Football: Nervy stalemate leaves Boro, Swansea in deep

Middlesbrough wasted a chance to boost their survival bid as the Premier League strugglers were held to a 0-0 draw by relegation rivals Swansea on Sunday.

Steve Agnew's side would have moved within two points of safety with a victory at the Liberty Stadium.

But instead second-bottom Middlesbrough remain five points adrift of 17th placed Swansea after a nervous, error-strewn encounter.

Middlesbrough, without a win in 12 league games, are four points behind third-bottom Hull, although they have a game in hand on both sides in the battle to avoid dropping into the Championship.

It was also a missed opportunity for Swansea, who could have pulled clear of the bottom three but instead remain deep in trouble themselves, just one point above Hull following their third successive game without a win.

Middlesbrough had to withstand early Swansea pressure, which saw Martin Olsson fire over and Jordan Ayew sting Victor Valdes' palms from 20 yards.

Swansea midfielder Tom Carroll went close to breaking the deadlock with a 25-yard drive that whistled past a post.

Iceland midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson produced a sublime touch to find a yard of space and unleash a 25-yard pile-driver which Valdes stretched to push away.

At the other end, Adama Traore dragged a shot wide before outpacing Alfie Mawson and picking out Adam Clayton at the far post.

Clayton did well to hold off Mawson but he was off balance when he took a shot which ended wide of Lukasz Fabianski's goal.

Sigurdsson's late free-kick was deflected wide, with the hosts believing a penalty might have been awarded after the ball had struck an arm.

In a frantic finish, Mawson's goal-bound header was cleared by Marten de Roon.

Middlesbrough's Rudy Gestede wasted an even better chance in the last seconds when he sent his far post header wide.