Jonathan Woodgate has been confirmed as the new Middlesborough head coach. Robbie Keane has been named as one of his assistants.
Woodgate, a former club captain is joined by his ex-Leeds and Tottenham team-mate, and current Republic of Ireland assistant manager Robbie Keane. Also on the ticket are Leo Percovich, who was previously on the coaching staff at the club from 2013-2017, and one-time Boro man Danny Coyne, as goalkeeping coach.
The 39 year-old believes it’s important to have members of the backroom staff who know the club well. Woodgate feels he has landed a coup in the form of former Republic of Ireland international and record goalscorer Keane.
“I’ve brought Leo (Percovich) in as part of the staff and I think it’s really important that I tap into Leo,” he said.
“He was brilliant under Aitor, he had his back, he was trustworthy, he has a connection with the whole of Middlesbrough and he brings a lot to the party.
“As well as Robbie Keane – I think that’s a fantastic appointment for the football club. You can look at the history, at the amount of times you’ve had a striker of his ilk in the backroom team, and it’s very rare that we’ve had it.
“We’ve got to have a philosophy at the club and I certainly believe in it. It’s what I’ve grown up believing in.
“I’ve had managers play the style of football that I want to play and I’ve bought into it and my coaching staff have done exactly the same.”
Woodgate has given the Boro fans some clues as to what style of play they can expect from his new-look team.
“We want to get fans on the edge of their seat. We want as many fans back in the stadium as we can by playing attacking, exciting football with high pressure, pressing in different areas,” he said.
“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 and that’s really important for this football club."