Midfielder Maikel Kieftenbeld returned from a two-game suspension for accruing 10 bookings in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Nottingham Forest and picked up another yellow card.
David Davis is closing in on a return following a knee injury but this game comes too soon, while Isaac Vassell (knee) and Jonathan Grounds (medial ligament) remain sidelined.
Lukas Jutkiewicz impressed as a second-half substitute against the Reds and will hope for a more prominent role against Boro.
Middlesbrough are without skipper Grant Leadbitter for the trip after he was booked for the 10th time this season in the 3-0 win over Leeds on Friday night.
Leadbitter had been an injury concern for the clash after hurting his hamstring in the 3-3 draw at Sunderland.
Rudy Gestede will not return this season after fracturing his ankle in the recent win against Hull.
Fabio is edging closer to fitness following a thigh problem but will not be in contention for the Blues game.
Pivotal game in Group E almost a pick ‘em with the bookies