Middlesbrough boss Jonathan Woodgate's candid response to side's stuttering start

Middlesbrough boss Jonathan Woodgate isn’t glossing over his side’s difficult start to the season but insists he still believes in his players.

Thursday, 17th October 2019, 6:25 pm
Jonathan Woodgate has admitted Middlesbrough's start to the season hasn't been good enough.

The Teessiders have won just two of their 11 league games so far this season and sit two points above the relegation zone ahead of Saturday’s meeting with West Brom.

Woodgate knows Boro must improve to compete with Slaven Bilic’s side, who are top of the table and have lost just once in the Championship this term.

“You sit down and analyse. We do need to do things better,” admitted Woodgate. “I am not stupid we need to improve, that starts with me, I’m at the top, that filters down to the coaches but the buck stops with me.

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“I have said you can’t get too high or too low. You need to realise what you need to improve on, examine everything going on.

“When you get beaten in different situations, people look at the little things. When you are doing well those little things don’t get brought up, as manager you examine everything. Sometimes you can look too hard, sometimes you just have to make little adjustments.”

Following his appointment in June, Boro’s hierarchy made it clear Woodgate’s appointment was part of a long-term process.

Still, the new boss knows that won’t wash forever.

When asked about it taking time to change the team’s style of play, Woodgate replied: “It can take time but how much time do you get? We will keep on going, doing what we do, if you keep working hard, setting the right standards the results will come.”

And despite Boro’s recent struggles, Woodgate does believe his players are better than what their league position suggests.

“I know those players care about the club,” Woodgate added. “You can only give it as much as you have got, you can only try to push them in right direction.

“It has to come from them. I have confident players in that dressing room who want to turn things around.”