Grant Hall reveals how Jordan Hugill helped him make Middlesbrough decision and what it's like playing against Britt Assombalonga

Defender Grant Hall signed a three-year deal at Middlesbrough.Defender Grant Hall signed a three-year deal at Middlesbrough.
Defender Grant Hall signed a three-year deal at Middlesbrough.
Grant Hall may not know many of his new Middlesbrough team-mates but believes he’ll settle in quickly after moving to Teesside.

The 28-year-old centre-back joined Boro on a three-year deal last week and admitted manager Neil Warnock played a big part in his decision.

Hall spent five years at QPR and was the club’s captain before his contract expired a month ago.

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And the well-spoken defender thinks his personality both on and off the pitch will help him make the transition from London to the North East.

“It won’t take me long to settle,” said Hall when speaking to the written press during a video call via Zoom. “I’m easy going, I get on well with anyone so I’m just looking forward to meeting all the lads and getting started.

When asked by the Mail if he already knows any of the players at Boro, Hall added: “I know Marc Bola, I actually did a training camp with a mutual friend that we know with him.

“I don’t know him very well but I’ve met him before so we know of each other, I only really knew Ravel Morrison who was here last season, I played with him.

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“Everyone else I’ve not played with before so I’m sort of going into a completely new changing room so I’ll have to get to know everyone quite quickly.”

Hall also spoke to Boro-born striker Jordan Hugill who impressed for QPR during a loan spell from West Ham last season.

That conversation gave Hall extra assurance after making what he described an easy decision to move to the Riverside.

“I spoke to Jordan Hugill as well,” Hall added. “I played with him at QPR and he’s a Middlesbrough lad and he’s played at this club.

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“He told me all about the club and that obviously helped my decision as well.”

Hall played against Boro four times for Rangers, most recently during a 2-2 draw at Loftus Road last November.

The defender says he always expected a tough game before coming up against the Teessiders, particularly as they’ve often been challenging near the top of the Championship.

“Always difficult to beat Middlesbrough, always defensively very solid normally,” said Hall when quizzed on his encounters with Boro.

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“Last season was a little bit different but it’s always a game you go into thinking it’s going to be a tough game against Middlesbrough, normally they have a lot of experienced players in the team and when I’ve played against them they’ve always been around the play-offs.”

Hall is also looking forward to playing with striker Britt Assombalonga who scored twice during that 2-2 draw last year.

“Playing Middlesbrough earlier in the season we drew 2-2 at home and Britt scored both goals,” added Hall.

“I think on his day he is a handful for any defender in the division, he’s strong, he's quick, he scores goals when he’s at his best.

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“Last season I don’t really know what went on but when I’ve played against him he’s a handful, those type of players it’ll be nice for me to be playing with them rather than against them.”

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