Jonathan Woodgate opens up on Garry Monk's Middlesbrough spell ahead of Sheffield Wednesday meeting

Middlesbrough head coach Jonathan Woodgate says he rarely saw former Boro boss Garry Monk when the pair were both at the club two years ago.

Friday, 27th September 2019, 7:00 am
Updated Friday, 27th September 2019, 3:51 pm
Jonathan Woodgate was Middlesbrough's under-18s boss during Garry Monk's tenure at the Riverside.

Woodgate and Monk will come face-to-face this weekend when Boro host Sheffield Wednesday, yet their paths did briefly cross following Monk’s appointment at the Riverside.

Monk took charge of Boro in the summer of 2017, following the club’s relegation from the Premier League under Steve Agnew.

Woodgate had been part of the first-team coaching staff before taking up a role as under-18s boss, yet there was little interaction with Monk.

“I was in with Agnew. I was under the impression Agnew would get the job,” said Woodgate when asked about Monk’s time at Boro.

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“Garry got the job. They wanted me to continue at the club, I asked what role. I wanted to keep on learning. It was early for me to go into the first-team block and I had the opportunities with the 18s. That was important for me.“Very rarely did I see him (Monk). Maximum I seen him was three times on the training pitch, occasionally in the canteen. He kept himself to himself really.

“He wasn’t familiar around the players. Some managers do that, others don’t. I rarely seen him in the training ground. We trained up the top and he trained down the bottom.”

After spending a reported £50million in his only transfer window at Boro, Monk was sacked by the club just six months after his appointment.

When asked where it went wrong for the former Swansea defender, Woodgate said: “I think what was difficult for him at that time, he had too many players.“Sometimes when the squad was going up, the players who weren't playing, there would be six in the sports hall. So you've got the subs and then another six or so to keep happy.“I think the squad was probably too big in general to look after. It's still imbalanced now when you look at it, it's still really imbalanced.”“I'm not going to sit here and start blaming people, there was definitely an imbalance to the squad.”