Hull City manager Nigel Adkins has tipped Middlesbrough as one of the three clubs he believes will earn promotion to the Premier League at the end of the season.
Adkins, who watched his side fall bottom of the Championship following a 1-0 defeat at former club and now league leaders Sheffield United, has predicted a top-flight return for the Blades alongside Leeds United and Tony Pulis' Boro.
Pulis' men began Saturday afternoon joint top of the league, however a first defeat of the campaign at the Riverside against ex manager Aitor Karanka and his Nottingham Forest side saw them drop two points outside the top two.
But despite the Blades and West Bromwich Albion occupying the automatic promotion places heading into the international break, Adkins has envisioned a Middlesbrough promotion come May 2019.
The 53-year-old reflected back on Boro's 1-1 draw with the Tigers last weekend, calling Pulis' side a good one who are "well equipped".
"We had three close games,” said Adkins.
“Middlesbrough who we drew with, Leeds United on Tuesday, and Sheffield United (on Saturday).
“They are three teams who I think will get promoted this season. Three good sides.
“Why those three? The three teams all play different ways and it shows there’s different ways to play football and win games.
“Middlesbrough are well equipped in what they go and do.
“Leeds, whether they can keep everyone fit is the other side of it, but some of the football they play is really good.
“And Sheffield United are now well equipped. They have an excellent manager, an excellent group of players and are going to be able to deal with injuries.
“They have got a real passionate support who will get behind them.”