Send us your pictures, video, news and views by texting DST to 80360 or email us
Boro broaden European links
MIDDLESBROUGH are working on ways to improve their international recruitment network while Mark Venus presses ahead with attempts to become the club’s next permanent manager.
Claims that Jose Mourinho’s former assistant at Real Madrid, Aitor Karanka, was at the Riverside Stadium on Saturday are not believed to be true, although he does have links to the club through Peter Kenyon.
Kenyon, the former Chelsea and Manchester United chief executive, has struck up a strong relationship with Middlesbrough chairman Steve Gibson in recent months in the hope of coming up with a plan to seal a Premier League return.
It is understood that Karanka, who could be a possible solution if the positive start under Venus does not continue, is now a contact in Spain the club can turn to in the pursuit of new players.
A delegation from an Italian club attended Middlesbrough’s 4-0 win over Doncaster Rovers on Friday night as part of Gibson’s attempts to widen the transfer net.
A similar delegation from Italy also spent the weekend of the Yeovil Town match last month on Teesside, with the Middlesbrough chairman keen to broaden ideas and links around Europe in the hope of landing better players at affordable prices.
Much work has gone in to transforming the club’s scouting system during the Tony Mowbray era and that is set to continue, with Gibson keen to expand options on the continent.
There have already been links made to Croatia, Brazil and Italy, while Spain and Portugal have been explored in the last six months because of Gibson’s talks with Kenyon and Mourinho’s agent Jorge Mendes.
Planning for the future remains an ongoing topic inside the corridors of power at the Riverside Stadium, but Venus is understood to remain in the box-seat to become Mowbray’s successor.
Gibson is understandably assessing all options on the managerial front and interest has been high in the position from home and abroad.
But Venus impressed in his first game in charge by guiding Middlesbrough to a comfortable victory over Doncaster and he will be in charge for this Saturday’s trip to Blackburn Rovers.
Gibson’s stance is believed to be the same. He is keen to see how Venus approaches and copes in the role temporarily and if he succeeds will think about appointing him until the end of the season.
And yesterday he outlined his reasons for taking the captaincy off Rhys Williams and handing it to Jonathan Woodgate.
Venus said: “Woody epitomises this football club. He’s from the area, he’s played at the highest level, he came back here and he commands respect from all the players.
“He’s an absolute winner, he’s a great pro and if that doesn’t tick enough boxes to be captain I don’t know what does.
“Jonathan is going to be the football club captain now and when he doesn’t play I’ll just pick someone to wear the armband.
“When Woody plays he will wear it and he’s the captain for all of the off the field things that happen and all the discussions between me and him. He is the captain now.”
Comments are closed on this article.