Middlesbrough earned their first league win of the new Championship season as Rudy Gestede's header gave Garry Monk's side a 1-0 victory over visitors Sheffield United at the Riverside Stadium this evening.
United started brightly away from home and they might have stolen an early lead, only for Leon Clarke to see his shot blocked inside the box following some smart work from Kieron Freeman on the right.
Boro were unable to put too much together in the opening stages although a switch to a more direct approach soon proved enough, as Gestede showed great aerial prowess to leap beyond his marker and send a looping header beyond United stopper Jamal Blackman.
Pushing higher up the pitch continued to work for the home side and Monk's men almost doubled their advantage around the half-hour mark, when Gestede again rose highest before being thwarted by a smart interception by Freeman.
Cyrus Christie impressed out on the right flank for Boro and his cross was almost knocked home just before the break, Gestede heading over the bar after cleverly arriving late.
Following a tepid showing inside the Boro half, the Blades came close to pulling level in the second half thanks to an effort from Paul Coutts that saw Darren Randolph tip the midfielder's speculative drive wide of the post.
United came close to earning themselves a late point when Dael Fry seemingly turned into his own net under pressure inside the box, only for the linesman to raise his flag for an offside much to the bemusement of Jack O'Connell.
That attempt proved to be the last for the Blades as they were unable to claw themselves back into the game, leaving Monk's charges to open their home account with a victory.