Middlesbrough secured a crucial home victory against Preston North End at the Riverside Stadium on Saturday afternoon as they continue their pursuit of automatic promotion to the Premier League.

They currently sit in third place in the provisional standings, with eight matches remaining in the regular season. Although they are three points behind second-placed Sheffield United, they have played one more game than them.

Chuba Akpom continued his impressive scoring form as he opened the scoring in the 22nd minute, with Cameron Archer providing the assist.

This marked his fourth consecutive goal in the Championship, which is his best run since joining Middlesbrough.

Akpom has now scored a total of five goals this month, including two against Reading and one each against Swansea City, Stoke City, and Preston North End. He has scored a total of 24 goals in 31 games in the division.

Cameron Archer then scored twice, in the 51st and 58th minutes, to give Middlesbrough a comfortable lead. Marcus Forss scored in stoppage time to make it 4-0, rounding off a convincing victory for the home team.