Middlesbrough recovered from letting an early two-goal lead slip to secure a rousing 3-2 victory at Watford and continue their climb up the Championship table.

After collecting just two points from their opening seven league games, Michael Carrick’s side have now managed successive victories.

Local boy Josh Coburn scored the 63rd-minute winner that halted an improbable comeback by Watford, who now sit just a point above their visitors having won just one of their last eight league fixtures.

Boro, who won their first league game of the campaign last weekend, raced into a 2-0 lead after only 12 minutes, courtesy of Riley McGree’s brace.

Their opening goal was one of stunning simplicity. Jonny Howson slid the ball in front of McGree, who had drifted between defenders. If that gap was large, so was the one left by Watford goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann at his near post into which McGree calmly steered his shot.

After Vakoun Bayo had steered a tame header wide at the other end, Boro extended their lead, again with the greatest of ease.

Matt Crooks moved into the Watford penalty area unchallenged and slid the ball square to McGree, who side-footed another shot past the motionless Bachmann.

Having been gifted the space in which to carve out opportunities in the Watford half, the visitors then reciprocated when Dael Fry failed to cut out a Ryan Porteous through ball and Bayo slid his shot under the advancing Seny Dieng to bring hope back to Vicarage Road.

Just as Watford had not learned their lesson, neither did Fry. The Middlesbrough central defender failed to cut out another forward pass, this time from Yaser Asprilla, and allowed Bayo to sprint clear again. This time, Dieng forced the Watford striker wide and watched on gratefully as Bayo skewed his shot wide.

The home side drew level in the 51st minute after Dieng had flung himself low down to his left to brilliantly parry away a downward Bayo header.

From the resulting corner, Imran Louza’s delivery found its way to the edge of the Boro area where Wesley Hoedt connected with an extraordinary half-volley.

Middlesbrough set about trying to retake the lead.

Isaiah Jones’ control let him down as he sprinted on to one Crooks pass, but Coburn was less profligate when Crooks split the Watford defence with another.

The 20-year-old, whose introduction into the Boro side by Carrick has coincided with their upturn in form, calmly stroked the ball past Bachmann.

The visitors held on this time but only just as Watford substitute Matheus Martins cut inside and curled a shot that clipped the crossbar three minutes into added time.