Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock has branded Gareth Southgate 'a disgrace' after the Boro boss fielded a weakened line-up in the defeat to Manchester City on Saturday.
Southgate, with one eye on last night's FA Cup quarter-final with Manchester United, rested striker Mark Viduka and centre-back Jonathan Woodgate for the 2-0 defeat which allowed City to move six points clear of the relegation zone.
By contrast, the Blades' 3-0 defeat to Chelsea and Charlton's 2-0 victory over Newcastle left Warnock's side just four points from safety.
'It's a disgrace. I know Gareth's a friend of Stuart Pearce's and they had Manchester United to face,' Warnock told Sky Sports News.
'But it's scandalous and I would love to see them lose their next six games and see how they feel in the last couple, under that sort of pressure.
'I don't think a club like Boro should disrespect Sheffield United. To not have any of those players playing against City, especially with the way they are playing at the moment, leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.
'He's only a young manager but I hope that one day it happens to him and he sees what effect it can have.
'They play West Ham next and Alan Curbishley is another mate of his. He'll probably not bother there, either.'