Middlesbrough F.C. were promoted to the Premier League after finishing second in the Championship in 2015/16. They will be playing in the Premier League for the first time since 2008/09 and it has been a long wait for their fans. Middlesbrough was one of the founding members of the Premier League when it started in 1992/93 and it will be their 15th season as a Premier League team.
Where is Middlesbrough?
Middlesbrough is in North East England and traditionally their biggest rivals are Sunderland and Newcastle Utd, although they have a strong rivalry with Leeds Utd as well. The derby match between Middlesbrough and Sunderland is called the Tees-Wear Derby, named after the rivers that run through the cities. Middlesbrough have played at the Riverside Stadium since 1995 and it has a capacity of 34,742. Between 1903 and 1995, Middlesbrough had played at Ayresome Park, but because the stadium was built in a residential area it was not possible to increase the capacity above 20,000. So, after over 90 years, Middlesbrough moved to their new stadium and Ayresome Park is now a housing estate in the town. Middlesbrough play in red shirts and socks with white shorts. The club badge consists of a red lion with the words Middlesbrough Football Club and 1876, which is the year of the club's formation. The symbol of the town of Middlesbrough is a blue lion so the football club kept the same image but turned it red to match the colours of the team.
What is Middlesbrough's nickname?
Middlesbrough has two nicknames. The first nickname is the Boro, and has been in common usage for decades. The name is a shortened version of Middlesbrough. However, Middlesbrough has a second nickname which is the Smoggies. Historically, Middlesbrough was a town built on heavy industry such as iron and steel, and this brought a lot of pollution to the area. There was often 'smog' in the air, which is a mixture of fog and smog. Because of this, fans of other teams used to call Middlesbrough the Smoggies as an insult. However, Middlesbrough fans started to use the nickname positively and are now called the Smoggies in a more affectionate manner. When Middlesbrough reached the UEFA Cup Final in 2007, you could see flags that read 'Smoggies on Tour'!
What is the history of Middlesbrough F.C?
The club was founded in 1876 but they didn't play in the professional leagues until 1899, when they were elected to the second division. Apart from two seasons, they have spent their entire history in the top two divisions of English football. One of those seasons was 1986/87, when they nearly went bankrupt due to financial problems. In 2004, Middlesbrough won their first and only major trophy when they won the League Cup. This win meant that they qualified for the UEFA Cup for the first time and they reached the UEFA Cup Final in 2006 where they eventually lost to Sevilla. The highest Middlesbrough have ever finished in the Premier League is seventh (2004/05) and their highest ever finish in the top division was fourth (1938/39).
Who are Middlesbrough's star players?
In 2015/16, were runners-up in the Championship which meant promotion to the Premier League after seven seasons away from the top division. Middlesbrough’s top scorer was David Nugent, with 8 league goals but the goals were shared with a lot of his teammate; Uruguayan internationals Cristhian Stuani (7) and Gaston Ramirez (7), Ghanaian international Albert Adomah (7), and Scottish international Jordan Rhodes (6) were also amongst the goals last season. Middlesbrough's manager is the Spaniard, Aitor Karanka. Middlesbrough is Karanka's first managerial job but he has had lots of experience from his time as an assistant to Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid. Karanka will have to use all of his experience and make some useful addition to the Middlesbrough squad if they are going to avoid a fight against relegation.
Prediction 2016/17: 16th
Key player: Cristhian Stuani
Did you know.......?
Middlesbrough once held the world record for the highest transfer fee paid for a player. They were the first team to pay £1000 for a player when they signed Alf Common from rivals Sunderland in 1905.
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Things you might not know about Middlesbrough
Brian Clough who won the European Cup twice as manager of Nottingham Forest was born in Middlesbrough and scored an impressive 197 goals in 213 games for the Boro.
Middlesbrough's record defeat and victory are both the same, 9-0 against Brighton (1958) and 0-9 against Blackburn (1954).
Brazil's World Cup winning midfielder, Juninho Paulista, made over 150 appearances for Middlesbrough.
During the 1966 World Cup, the North Korean team stayed on Teesside and beat Italy at Ayresome Park.
In 1801, Middlesbrough was a farm that was home to 25 people. Today the population is over 140,000.