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Page last updated at 14:47 GMT, Wednesday, 30 September 2009 15:47 UK

Boro must show flair, says O'Neil

Gary O'Neil
O'Neil has made more than 60 league appearances for Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough midfielder Gary O'Neil believes his team-mates need to play with more confidence if they are to achieve success this season.

Boro have lost their last two home games, to West Brom and Leicester, and O'Neil has called on his colleagues to play with greater drive and focus.

"We need to have more belief in ourselves," he told BBC Tees.

"We are a good side, we need to be braver on the ball and get on it and show people what we can do."

With just a point to show from the club's last three games, Middlesbrough have slipped down the Championship table into fourth place, just a point ahead of five other clubs and six points behind leaders Newcastle.

And O'Neil admits form must improve if they are to be considered genuine contenders for automatic promotion.

"It's a concern that we're struggling in general," he added.

"If you're going for promotion and you're 2-0 up away from home (Boro drew 2-2 at Coventry in identical circumstances) then three points should be the only outcome."

Despite being linked with a move away from the Riverside, O'Neil has made more than 60 league appearances and has featured in all but one of the club's league matches so far this season.

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see also
Southgate expects Boro response
29 Sep 09 |  Middlesbrough
Middlesbrough 0-1 Leicester
29 Sep 09 |  Championship
Williams rues late Boro slip-up
28 Sep 09 |  Middlesbrough
Coventry 2-2 Middlesbrough
26 Sep 09 |  Championship

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