Friday, February 3, 2023

Middlesbrough Add More Steel To Their Defence And The Fans Love It

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Sourav Bhakat
An ardent sports lover who loves to sleep, eat and watch Manchester City play. In that order.

Middlesbrough have secured the signing of Calum Chambers who has joined them on a season-long loan. With this deal, Aitor Karanka has resumed his impressive transfer form after a couple of weeks pause. Chambers signifies a pretty substantial catch for the Teesiders who are increasingly looking like a team who are on their way to finishing lot higher up the table than initially thought.

After a sparkling season for the Saints, Chambers was touted as the next big thing and he made the subsequent big-money move to Arsenal. But his career has snagged comprehensively since then. Never quite consistent enough to guarantee first team action, the defender has been played in various positions as a stop-gap option during emergencies and it has harmed his development to a large extent. And apparently, the Gunners were adamant that the team gives some assurances of utilising the player in the central areas of the defence more often. But it will certainly be to the team’s requirement where he eventually ends up playing. And as Karanka has shown this season, he is not shy of utilising a player in multiple positions. Which would probably mean that Chambers will end up essaying various roles here as well.

Though Boro have been busy in the market, their depth is lacking quality and Chambers will be able to deputise for the injured Marten de Roon if required. But he is likely to compete for a place in the heart of the defence with the likes of Gibson, Ayala and Espinosa.

Middlesbrough have been impressive thus far and are yet to lose a match which illustrates the priorities for Karanka as he looks to tighten up at the back and is backing his philosophy of not conceding before scoring a goal. For Chambers, this will be a great opportunity to remain in the Premier League and earn valuable minutes. He is unlikely to spend too many comfortable minutes with the focus on compact and diligent defending in Karanka’s side but he will relish the challenge of developing further under the former Real Madrid assistant coach.

Boro fans welcomed him with open arms while the Arsenal fans showed their love for the lad with their best wishes and some could not help but take a dig at the Riverside club.

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