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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 3:46 pm 
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He only played 2 games for us but IF DDG had gone to Madrid last summer I'd have been pretty happy with Valdes in goal for a season no idea what his form was like at Liege but he was number 1 for them until they were out of contention for honours so gave matches to a few academy lads.

I know a lot of the U21 players used to buzz about having him around he just had a complete breakdown with LVG over something and the bridges never got repaired.

I don't think he'd have signed without assurances that he was coming in as number 1.

Lets not forget 2 years ago Barcelona were pretty gutted that he'd decided to leave he was without doubt one of the top 5 keepers in the world.

My only concern with him at Utd was he's vulnerable on crosses like most keepers who've grown up in La Liga it takes them a while to adjust to the physicality on set pieces but I think he's good enough to adapt quickly to it


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:30 pm 
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Hope you're right :fonz:

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2016 7:51 pm 
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Quote:
Brad Guzan is close to becoming Aitor Karanka’s ninth signing of the summer as Middlesbrough’s manager continues to remodel his promoted side.

The 31-year-old USA international goalkeeper is no longer wanted by Aston Villa and is expected to join on a free transfer after agreeing a two-year deal. Guzan would be expected to challenge fellow newcomer, the former Barcelona and Manchester United keeper Víctor Valdés, and Dimi Konstantopoulos for a starting slot in the Premier League.

Guzan is unlikely to be the final close-season signing as Karanka is very much in the market for a centre-half. The Spaniard had agreed a near £10m deal to sign the Serbian defender Neven Subotic from Borussia Dortmund but the club medical revealed a rib problem, the transfer collapsed and Subotic was then forced to undergo chest surgery. He is not expected to return to training with Borussia Dortmund until well into next year.

Karanka has turned his attention to Harry Maguire, the 23-year-old Hull City centre-half. However, Maguire is unlikely to be released cheaply and seems much needed at the KC Stadium where injury will sideline Michael Dawson for the first three months of the season.


How is this fraud getting a move straight back to the prem worst keeper in the league by a mile last season


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2016 12:25 am 
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Baffling. Literally haven't heard anyone say "Yeah this move makes sense". Mental. Mental. Mental.

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 7:18 pm 
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Middlesbrough appear to have fought off competition to sign Arsenal defender Calum Chambers on loan.

The 21-year-old has slipped down the pecking order at the Emirates after initially impressing following a move from Southampton, opening the door for a temporary switch away from the club.

There was little shortage of interest in the thrice-capped England right-back, with Roma, Valancia, Espanyol, Hull, Stoke and West Ham all credited with an interest.

However, it is Boro who seem to have won the race, with Sky Sports reporting a deal is close.

Arsenal, though, are not thought to be open to the idea of allowing Chambers leave permanently, despite the imminent arrival of Shkodran Mustafi, who is set to arrive from Valencia to strengthen their defensive ranks.


Will he play?


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2016 11:19 pm 
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I think he will soon enough. We have looked ropey as at the back recently. Whether or not he's the answer I've no idea. Doubt it to be honest.

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 9:13 am 
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Yeah must admit haven't seen much of Boro only saw the first half hour of the Everton match and a bit of the game vs Sunderland.

Do you think you'll stay up?


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 10:26 pm 
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I think we can do it but I think we'll scrape it if we do.

Everton and Spurs were just better than us, but no one would be expecting us to beat them.

It's the games vs Sunderland, Burnley et al that determine our season and I think we can beat them..

Also Chambers did indeed start today and from what I understand he was absolutely dire

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 11:36 am 
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Was never that convinced by Chambers made the move way to early just wasted the last few seasons


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:01 pm 
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Quote:
Middlesbrough are closing in on the signing of the Aston Villa striker Rudy Gestede, with Aitor Karanka’s side expected to pay around £6.5m to secure the Benin international.

Gestede, who scored five times in the Premier League last season, has caught the attention of several Premier League sides despite starting only eight Championship matches for Villa this season. Crystal Palace and West Bromwich Albion, as well as Newcastle United, were also interested in signing the former Blackburn striker but it appears Middlesbrough have won the race after convincing the 28-year-old to move to the north-east.

Gestede was in the crowd at the Riverside Stadium for Boro’s 3-0 defeat by Liverpool and is expected to sign a three-year contract with the club.

His departure could lead to the Scotland striker Jordan Rhodes heading the other way, with Villa’s manager, Steve Bruce, interested in signing the player purchased from Blackburn last year.

Newcastle may now turn their attention to Brentford’s Scott Hogan, with Palace and Swansea both prepared to pay £15m for Newcastle’s Serbia striker, Aleksandar Mitrovic.


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2017 1:07 pm 
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Quote:
Middlesbrough are in talks with Rudy Gestede after agreeing a fee for the striker with Aston Villa.

Benin international Gestede joined Villa from Blackburn in July 2015 and has scored 10 goals in 55 appearances.

But the 28-year-old has started only three games since Steve Bruce took over at the Championship club in October and was left out of Villa's squad for Monday's 1-0 defeat at Cardiff City.

"I would envisage something would happen there," Bruce told BBC WM.

"The two clubs have agreed a fee and he's up there for talks."

Bruce added that Villa are close to bringing a new player in on loan.

"It is agreed verbally but there is still some work to be done. I will only improve us if the right player comes along," he added.


Bit of a strange signing unless Negredo is already off I remember him struggling to settle last time he was in England with City.

Not sure Gestede is really good enough he's very good in the air and probably suits the way Boro play


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 10:50 pm 
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Quote:
Patrick Bamford is undergoing a medical at Middlesbrough with a view to signing a four-and-a-half-year contract with the Premier League club after Chelsea accepted an initial offer of around £5m for the striker. The transfer fee for the 23-year-old could rise to as much as £10m depending on appearances and various clauses being triggered.

Bamford leaves Chelsea without ever making a senior appearance for the club he joined from Nottingham Forest for £1.5m five years ago. He has been loaned out to six clubs, including Middlesbrough, where he scored 19 goals during the 2014‑15 season and was named Championship player of the year.

His most recent loan spell was with Burnley, where he played for a total of 34 minutes this season across six substitute appearances. Bamford also saw little action in the previous campaign – he never started a league game during a loan spell with Crystal Palace that was cut short, and five of his seven league appearances for Norwich, during the second half of the 2015-16 season, were from the bench.

With 18 months remaining on his contract at Chelsea and no prospect of breaking through at Stamford Bridge, Bamford was keen to secure a permanent transfer and avoid another loan move. He will hope that a fresh start at Middlesbrough helps to reignite the promising career that has stalled since he left the Riverside a little under two years ago.


This guy has just wasted 18 months with crap loans will be interesting to see if he gets chances straight away.

Boro need more goals but is he really going to start ahead of Negredo?

Sounds like Rhodes is off and Nugent is already gone


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:56 pm 
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Quote:
Steve Gibson has no intention of selling Middlesbrough after rejecting a £50m offer for a stake in the club.

Gibson, who steered Boro back from the brink of financial ruin in 1986, is not interested ether in a full sale or a partnership, but is open to potential new commercial avenues.

Sources on Teesside have confirmed that the owner and the consultant Peter Kenyon met the Chinese businessman Chien Lee, whose OGC Nice Investment Group Ltd owns the French club Nice, and associates in October.

Subsequently, an offer amounting to around £50m was made for a 50% stake in the club, although it was swiftly rejected. However, the two parties could yet work together as Gibson attempts to increase Middlesbrough’s global profile.

The 59-year-old local businessman joined the club’s board at the age of 26 and led it through liquidation in 1986 before reluctantly taking on the role of chairman eight years later.

Gibson has backed the head coach, Aitor Karanka, in the transfer market to enable him to end Boro’s seven-year Premier League exile with promotion last season.

Lee has previously held talks with Hull City, but failed to strike a deal with the Allam family, and is also understood to have made overtures to Middlesbrough’s north-east neighbours Newcastle United and Sunderland.

News of the discussions with Gibson emerged as rumours circulated that Karanka had parted company with the club on Monday evening after criticising sections of the Riverside crowd in the wake of the 3-1 Premier League defeat by West Ham United on Saturday.

However, the speculation was ill-founded and the Spaniard, who was banished from the training ground for 48 hours after a bust-up with some of his players last season before Gibson brokered a truce, remains in post.

That said, it is understood that his comments have not gone down well, albeit there is an acceptance that he may have misinterpreted exhortations from the stands to “attack, attack, attack, attack, attack” as encouragement to play the kind of long-ball football he appears to detest.

Karanka, who accused fans of having “a short memory”, said after the game: “I am really upset with the last 10 minutes because we didn’t play in the way that we have to play, in the way that we know to play, and it was because the atmosphere was awful today because they [the crowd] demanded a lot of the players.

“We don’t know how to play in that way – playing that way, we didn’t create one chance. The team was broken on the pitch and it’s a thing that I don’t like at all, so we need to improve. They need to understand where we were last season, two seasons ago. I think these players deserve more respect.”


Jesus Christ been a while since I saw Kenyon's name no surprise he's a consultant these days bet he charges fortunes for giving people access to investors

Would be a shame if we lost another club to foreign owners but I guess you need investment to survive these days in the cut throats business of modern day football

Gibson seems like a good egg though


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:24 pm 
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I write a lot about football, which inevitably means I write a lot of stupid things about football. One of the stupidest came after the second week of the current league season when I wrote that Middlesbrough’s games would be exciting to watch.

My only excuse is that those first two games, against Stoke and Sunderland, were actually rather thrilling. Twenty-three games later, Boro’s games have seen a total of only 46 goals, fully 13 fewer than Southampton’s, the next lowest at 59. The last time a top-flight team’s games finished the season with more than 13 fewer goals than anyone else was 20 years ago, when Leeds turned the trick.

The Whites’ manager for most of that season? None other than George Graham, who made a career out of keeping things tight at the back. And that’s exactly what Aitor Karanka is doing. He joined Boro in November of 2013, and for the rest of the season they had the best defence in the Championship. The next season they had the best defence in the Championship. And again the next season, promotion season. Karanka worked under José Mourinho at Real Madrid. Did I mention I predicted their games would be exciting?

The miserly goal totals have only decreased as the season has progressed. Their last six games have produced only seven total goals. The problem, of course, is if neither team is scoring much, you’re not scoring much yourself. And in fact Boro have only scored three times in their last eight matches, none of which they’ve won.

This would be embarrassing in any other context. But Boro are back in the top flight after seven years in the second division, and the only item on the agenda is survival. As everyone except Eddie Howe knows, the first thing you do is get the clean sheet. Boro have registered five 0-0 draws, four of them against teams higher in the table.

But now and then you need three points, and that’s a different task altogether. Boro have fewer wins than anyone in the division, and don’t seem to have a plan for getting more. As a result, after a decent first half of the season, they’ve been inching toward the relegation zone. Each win by a team below them means further jeopardy – they’ve already been overtaken by Swansea City – and the bottom three surely beckons unless they can find a reliable route to goal.

They had hoped to find one in the January window, a natural market for relegation candidates. It made the difference for Sunderland last year, and may do the same for Hull this year. And Boro tried, they really tried. For weeks they had Bojan in their sights, but he went to Germany. At one point a headline in the Middlesbrough Gazette read ‘Boro close in on Jesé’, but he went to Spain. At least Robert Snodgrass stayed in England, but he preferred the Thames to the Tees.

In the end, Boro wound up with Rudy Gestede, Patrick Bamford, and Adlene Guedioura. His brilliant cup volley notwithstanding, there’s no evidence that Gestede is anything more than a good Championship striker. Patrick Bamford might get strong marks in my literature classes, but not in Premier League action. Guedioura can bring only the faintest of impetus to the midfield. They’re no closer than before.

The odd thing is that they have the single most exciting attacking player in the league, the incomparable Adama Traoré, whom I’ll keep calling Tornado until it catches on. He’s been in and out of the line-up, mainly because the boss doesn’t trust him to defend. But the boss has also figured out Boro need goals, so Traoré has started the last four games in the hope he can make something, anything happen.

But here’s the killer stat. In 1117 minutes on the pitch, he’s delivered only 11 key passes. That means by far the most prolific dribbler on the planet creates less than a chance a game. Moreover, he has yet to record a goal or an assist, and his pass completion percentage is one of the lowest on the team. He’s a solo act, glorious to watch, but his very unpredictability makes it hard to combine with his teammates. At the moment there’s a No End Product sign around his neck, and flashing red.

So the side is stuck for creativity. Viktor Fischer is down the pecking order. Adam Forshaw has had a fine season, but he’s there to deliver the first pass, not the last. Unless Guedioura is having a monster day, the playmaker has to be Stewart Downing or Gastón Ramírez. For those keeping score, that’s one player who’s been told he can leave and another that wants to.

You can imagine how frustrating it’s been for Alvaro Negredo, who’s used to much better service. To say he’s been feeding off scraps is an insult to scraps. His technical skills have been underused because he’s playing primarily as a target man, behind only Sam Vokes, Christian Benteke and Troy Deeney in aerial duels per game. To be fair, though, he’s only played well in spurts, and has occasionally seemed off the pace. He’s 31 years old, and doesn’t seem to have drunk from the Zlatan fountain.

You can also imagine how frustrating it’s been for the supporters, who begged for Traoré and have been consistently critical of the safety-first approach. In the loss to West Ham, with Boro down a goal late, the Riverside fans chanted “attack, attack, attack!” At the ensuing press conference, Karanka, for whom the word ‘tetchy’ seems to have been invented, responded quite irrationally that he wasn’t going to play long ball no matter what the fans wanted. Needless to say, the fans weren’t chanting “lump it, lump it, lump it”, and why the heck did you buy Rudy Gestede anyway?

All season I’ve picked Boro to stay up, mainly because ‘defence keeps you up’ is one of those reliable sayings that mean you don’t have to think. There’s no denying the defence is good: Ben Gibson is a future England star; Calum Chambers and of late Bernardo Espinosa have played well; Fabio has been a two-footed revelation at full-back; Victor Valdés is showing his class in goal.

But backing Boro to stay up, although not quite stupidity yet, is looking less and less like wisdom. This coming weekend is an important test: they go to Selhurst Park to play a side that even under Sam Allardyce has only one clean sheet in eight. If Boro draw a blank there, the smart people may start backing the drop.

Peter Goldstein


Getting worried BC?

That cup win might restore some confidence


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:34 am 
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We are f*cked IMO.

No bottle, players who don't want to play for the club, no creativity, very little pace, very little guile, no idea where the goals will come from, defence is good but we aren't infallible and the manager sadly does not seem to be learning anything. I've backed AK relentlessly and still don't want to see him go after what he's done, but he's making life very difficult for himself. Going 5 at the back vs Crystal Palace was absurd.

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2017 11:37 am 
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Have to admit I've not seen much of Boro but what I have seen isn't great you basically rely on Negredo to knock something down to someone who's not even there most of the time.

It seems AK can set a defence up which is good but he hasn't worked it out going forward in the championship he always had strikers who were top quality championship players but they can cut it in the Prem.

I hope you stay up but you wonder if he'll survive if you do


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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:16 pm 
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Aitor's gone !

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 Post subject: Re: Smoggie Life
PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:57 pm 
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It's a bit late but they just don't even try to score goals I know they have a good defence but if you're not even trying to score how can you expect to win?

Not sure if it's him calling all the shots in terms of transfers but they haven't purchased PL quality attacking players they've got guys who score in the Championship & Negredo.

I think this is a case of hit the panic button and hope they get a new manager bounce because everyone else is picking up points and they are sinking like a stone.


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