Wednesday, September 27, 2023

The 1 Thing Karanka Has To Do In January To Ensure Middlesbrough Remains In The Premier League

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

There’s been quite some transfer talk lately and unsurprisingly so considering the transfer window a less than 10 days away. Most of the attention will be on the big spenders in the Premier League. The likes of Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City are likely to be active in the window, and even Arsenal, known to keep their spending power under the lid, could fork out some money.

Down at the bottom, things aren’t always so merry. The North East has seen some spending in recent windows and Middlesbrough, who made it to the top flight after seven long years, are likely to make hay while the transfer window sun shines.

Aitor Karanka went in for some pragmatic buys last summer but the results have been mixed. The fans would have taken the 14th spot at Christmas even though the expectations are pretty high these days.

Boro have had an alright first half of the season. The standout results have been the win in the Wear-Tees derby and courageous draws against Arsenal and Manchester City.

The team has largely relied on the good defensive discipline to grind out draws and haven’t been able to convert them into wins. The stats prove the aforementioned as Boro have drawn the highest number of games this season, have managed just 16 goals from 17 games but have conceded the least number of goals outside the top eight places.

New Middlesbrough Manager Press Conference

The numbers pretty much prove that Karanka simply cannot overlook their goal-deficient attack. Alvaro Negredo came with a lot of promise but simply hasn’t been consistent enough. He has managed just five goals and is the club’s top-scorer.

Boro’s gameplay is designed to work on the counter, so it’s no surprise that players like Fischer and Traore have excited the fans. The duo possesses pace on the flanks but have often found wanting with their final product. However, the recent returns of Stuani and Ramirez will help with the creativity.

A new striker is almost a must if Boro wants to avoid any final day drama. Even though Karanka has gotten his side to be stingy at the back, he simply cannot persist with Negredo for five more months. The club needs someone who has played in a similar setup before and doesn’t look out of sorts when played up front.

Whom should they sign? Well, that’s really for Karanka to see. However, there have been stories popping up. Of late, Rudy Gestede is one. The Frenchman had a failed spell at Aston Villa and there are doubts if he is the answer.

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