Connect with us

Leagues: Championship

Tony Mowbray Joins Middlesbrough: What It Means to Boro Fans

The Wembley Cup at Wembley Stadium Tottenham Hotspur v Celtic (0-2) 26/07/09 Celtic Manager Tony Mowbray as he wins his first trophy for the club Photo Roger Parker Fotosports International

Tony Mowbray took over as manager of Middlesbrough yesterday. I think all my fellow Boro fans will be delighted at this news.

For a start, he has taken a side out of the Championship before when he took WBA up, which wasn’ t something that his predecessor could have claimed.

But his appointment is more important than merely what he can achieve on the pitch. Mowbray, a locally born lad who captained the club with distinction in the 80s, will innately understand the club. He knows the local culture and he can set about restoring some warmth and heart to Middlesbrough FC; a warmth and heart that many feel was drained out of the club by Strachan’ s tenure.

A club like Middlesbrough has no tourist fans, it has no casual supporters. If the local community isn’ t engaged, inspired and excited by the football club then you get what Strachan created – dwindling attendances, disillusion and disappointment. Even the club shops sales were depressed.

Mowbray will understand the relationship between the club and the community. He will hopefully reconnect the youth team to the first team and once again bring local kids through. While you might argue only Adam Johnson and Stewart Downing have been big successes from the youth development at Middlesbrough that is to miss the point. By constantly feeding home-grown players into the first team, it gives the local community faith in the club. It bolsters the sense that dreams can be achieved through the club; that it’ s not just an inert institution.

This is so important to an unfashionable out of the way clubs like the Boro. It is part of their civic duty and certainly Chairman Steve Gibson sees it that way. The club is there for the people, to serve and feed their hopes and dreams on and off the pitch. Mowbray instinctively will understand this. A football club is more than just the eleven players on the rectangle of grass and I can see only good things happening under Mowbray. This might not even be promotion, not immediately, he’ s got all the Celtic players he dumped on Strachan to get rid of first, but more important than promotion, I think we’ ll see happier, more exciting times and just as importantly a bit of soul return to the club.

Editor’s Note: Johnny’s new book: “We Ate All The Pies: How Football Swallowed Britain Whole” is available via Amazon US or Amazon UK.

200+ Channels With Sports & News
  • Starting price: $33/mo. for fubo Latino Package
  • Watch Premier League, World Cup, Euro 2024 & more
  • Includes NBC, USA, FOX, ESPN, CBSSN & more
Live & On Demand TV Streaming
  • Price: $69.99/mo. for Entertainment package
  • Watch World Cup, Euro 2024 & MLS
  • Includes ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 + local channels
Many Sports & ESPN Originals
  • Price: $6.99/mo. (or get ESPN+, Hulu & Disney+ for $13.99/mo.)
  • Features Bundesliga, LaLiga, Championship, & more
  • Also includes daily ESPN FC news & highlights show
2,000+ soccer games per year
  • Price: $4.99/mo
  • Features Champions League, Serie A, Europa League & NWSL
  • Includes CBS, Star Trek & CBS Sports HQ
175 Premier League Games & PL TV
  • Starting price: $4.99/mo. for Peacock Premium
  • Watch 175 exclusive EPL games per season
  • Includes Premier League TV channel plus movies, TV shows & more
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in Leagues: Championship

Translate »