Thursday, March 30, 2023

Why Middlesbrough Can Be The Most Impressive Of The 3 Promoted Teams This Season

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Arka Tarun Mukherjee
Arsenal fan and football expert, Arka Tarun Mukherjee actually used to play cricket at semi pro level. An ardent student of football tactics, ATM is very passionate about the tactical aspects of the game and has a dream of being a football manager in the future.

Middlesbrough secured their passage back to the Premiership after a wait of seven long years when they secured the runner-up spot in the Championship table of 2015/16. manager Aitor Karanka guided his team to the second spot, 4 points adrift of eventual winners Burnley. After the heartbreak of losing to Norwich in the playoffs last season, securing the automatic qualification spot this season proved vital as the club qualified for the Premier League directly without having to deal with the lottery of the playoffs once again.

Boro are in line to experience some massive windfall after their promotion as the new £3.2 billion deal guarantees all the teams in the top division to have some insane amount of cash. The club has already shown their intent in the transfer market, with the financial security allowing the freedom of paying decent chunks for the right players who will not only secure Premier league survival but will aid the team in their push for a respectable finish and slowly stabilize the team so that they are able to replicate the old days where they were a team with some serious players and reputation.

Their 42-year old manager, Aitor Karanka, who worked as an assistant to Jose Mourinho during his time at Real Madrid, is quite pragmatic in his managerial approach. Like his peer, he also likes to build his foundations on the base of rock solid defence. Having been an established defender in his playing days known for his exceptional understanding of the game and anticipation, the current Middlesbrough boss really knows how to construct a mean defensive unit. Last season, Middlesbrough conceded the least amount of goals in their division (18) with a record of an astonishing 8 goals (only) conceded in their home games. This type of defensive discipline can be an absolute asset for any team let alone the one which has just got promoted to the Premiership.

Apart from having the best defensive record and discipline, the Riverside club has also the best transfer window of all the other two newly promoted clubs in Burnley and Hull City. They have brought in quite a few players already with Victor Fischer, Victor Valdes, Marten De Roon, Antonio Barragan, Bernardo Espinosa and Alvaro Negredo being some of those names. To be fair, Boro have left behind Burnley and Hull so far in the market that there is absolutely no comparison. 

The brilliant transfer business has already put the team in a very strong position which when coupled with their defensive solidity and tactical flexibility makes the team a good bet for not only surviving the drop but also claim a place near the top half of the Premiership table. Burnley do have an awful record in recent years after being promoted while Hull City never threatened to be a club who can cement a place in the top flight after the wonderful exploits of Phil Brown in 2008-09 season when the Tigers earned praise with their performances. Hence, it can be pretty easily concurred that Middlesbrough would clearly be the most impressive team which will be promoted to the Premier League next season.

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