Killen 24, O'neill 35
GORDON STRACHAN celebrated his birthday by watching Boro turn in arguably their best home performance of the season,
There were just three survivors from the side which started against Barnsley six weeks ago, Danny Coyne, Gary O'Neil and Jonathan Franks.
It was a side which showed four changes from that which drew at Ipswich as Scott McDonald made his Boro debut to give Chris Killen his sixth striker partner in as many games and Boro their 12 different striking combination of the season.
Barry Robson returned from suspension, Franks started in place of Andy Taylor, while Emanuel Pogatetz returned from injury to replaced as Boro started with their 19th different back four of the current campaign.
David Wheater missed a game for the first time this season, suffering with a knee complaint, Justin Hoyte dropped to the bench, as did Lee Miller, while Taylor missed out altogether.
Middlesbrough: Coyne; Naughton (Hoyte 90), Grounds, McManus, Pogatetz, Franks, Flood, O'Neil (Capt), Robson, Killen (Miller 68), McDonald. Unused subs: Steele (gk); McMahon, Bennett, Lita, L Williams.
Barnsley: Steele; Foster (Capt.), Moore, Dickinson, Trippier (Hume 77), Teixeira, Doyle, Da Silva (Rodriguez 46), Hallfredsson (Hammill 58), Colace, Gray. Unused subs: Preece (gk); Macken, Potter, Butterfield.
Referee Carl Boyeson, East Yorkshire.
Middlesbrough O'Neil, 75, taking a free-kick too quickly.
Barnsley Dickinson, 74, dissent.
Attendance 17,775 (815 Barnsley)
Conditions Cold, slight breeze, occasional rain and snow.
Website Boro Man of the Match Eye catching performances from Jonathan Franks and Willo Flood, but Scott McDonald gets the vote.