Former Newcastle United defender promoted to managerial role

Jonathan Woodgate has been appointed as Middlesbrough manager.

Friday, 14th June 2019, 2:01 pm
Jonathan Woodgate, second right, is unveiled as Middlesbrough manager.

The former Newcastle United defender succeeds Tony Pulis in the role at the Championship club, which just missed out on the play-offs last season.

Woodgate – who had two spells as a player at Middlesbrough before joining the coaching staff – has appointed Robbie Keane to his backroom team.

“We want to get fans on the edge of their seat," said the 39-year-old. "We want as many fans back in the stadium as we can by playing attacking, exciting football with high pressure,.

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“I’m not just talking about gung-ho, I’m talking about players running the extra yard, knowing when to press, how to press and I’m looking to bring kids through the system. That’s really important for this football club.

“In the last few years we’ve maybe gone away from doing that, but I know every player from the Under-12s to Under-23s to first team level. I know what they can do.

“I won’t be frightened to put a young player in, and the fans can start connecting with them, because they have a hunger and a desire to learn and go forward.”

Woodgate joined Newcastle in January 2003 from Leeds United. He helped Sir Bobby Robson’s side reach the semi-finals of the UEFA Cup and finish fifth in the Premier League in his only full season at St James’s Park.

Jonathan Woodgate.

He was sold to Real Madrid for £13.4million in the summer of 2004.

Meanwhile, Mike Williamson, another former United defender, was unveiled as Gateshead manager yesterday.