John Mikel Obi was handed the Middlesbrough captaincy armband and he got one over his international teammate Oghenekaro Etebo as Boro beat Stoke City 1-0 in their Championship clash at the Riverside Stadium on Friday.
Britt Assombalonga scored the decisive goal for Middlesbrough in the second minute of the encounter.
Both Mikel and Etebo were in action for their respective clubs for the entire duration of the game.
The win boost Boro’s chances of picking a play-off spot at the end of the season.
Having failed to win their previous seven games before handing the captain band to Mikel, the Riverside club have now gone three games without a defeat, keeping three clean sheets in the process with Mikel a vital part of the success.