Middlesbrough FC news: Ex-Boro and Nottingham Forest manager opens up plus Jordan Hugill’s admission

Former Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka has opened up on the early stages of his time at the club and support he received from Boro chairman Steve Gibson.

Saturday, 21st September 2019, 6:05 am
Updated Saturday, 21st September 2019, 7:05 am
Aitor Karanka managed Middlesbrough between 2013 and 2017.
Aitor Karanka managed Middlesbrough between 2013 and 2017.

Karanka was appointed at the Riverside in 2013 after taking charge of a side which was languishing in the bottom half of the Championship.

In an interview with Spanish newspaper AS, Karanka discussed several periods of his managerial career so far, including his time at Nottingham Forest, and how he was given time at Boro.

In his first full season with Middlesbrough, Karanka reached the Championship play-off final before his side were beaten by Norwich.

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The Spaniard remained in charge, though, as Boro finally won promotion to the Premier League.

When discussing the Norwich defeat, Karanka said: “We lost it and I went to the box to greet my parents and the owner (Gibson) took me and told me that nothing was happening.

“I grabbed him and said: ‘What do you mean, nothing’s happening? We just lost a final’. He told me to be calm again and the following year I would be promoted. That trust marks you and in fact, that friendship continues.”

Jordan Hugill’s admission – Things didn’t quite work out for the Boro-born frontman during a loan spell at his hometown club last season.

Hugill scored just six league goals in 37 appearances for the Teessiders following his switch from West Ham in the summer of 2018.

The 27-year-old has started this campaign in scintillating form, though, scoring five goals in seven Championship games for new club QPR, who he signed for on loan in July.

During an interview with Metro, Hugill was asked about his time at Boro, to which he replied: “At Middlesbrough things just didn’t happen — nothing against Middlesbrough, that's my club, where I grew up and was a season-ticket holder.

"I love that club to death. But sometimes things don’t go the way you want them to go."

Under-23s beaten by West Ham – Finally, Boro’s under-23 side lost 4-3 to West Ham on Friday night.

Boro came from 2-1 down to take the lead courtesy of goals from Rumarn Burrell and Sam Folarin but conceded twice in the final 18 minutes.