Former Boro manager open to return as Pulis leaves Middlesbrough FC
Boro are searching for a new manager, as Tony Pulis' managerial spell came to an end this morning after his contract at the club expired.
Having failed to guide Boro to the Championship play-offs, finishing a point behind Derby County, time was called on Pulis' 18-month spell as manager.
Boro confirmed on Friday morning that Pulis' contract would not be renewed. "Middlesbrough FC can confirm that the contract of manager Tony Pulis will not be extended" read a club statement.
Steve Gibson said "I'd like to thank Tony for his hard work and commitment over the past 18 months. He has been a joy to work with and a complete gentleman."
"Two years ago, we invested heavily in the squad in terms of transfer fees and salaries in an attempt to regain our Premier League status. This happened before Tony's arrival."
"Over the past 18 months, Tony has been proactive, not only in the ambition to win football matches and promotion to the Premier League, but also in addressing our financial position in order to comply and respect the Championship Fair Play criteria."
"You never know"
Former Boro manager, Aitor Karanka, has emerged as a candidate to replace Tony Pulis.
The Spaniard spent three and a half years as Boro manager, gaining promotion to the Premier League before leaving the club by mutual consent in March 2017.
When asked about a return to Boro, Karanka said "especially in football - you never know."
"The relationship I have with Steve (Gibson) is amazing."
"In my case, I arrived in a completely new country. New club, new league, new competition and you need time."
"When you arrive you have a squad but you have to add to it with players you really want."
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"With those players, you are improving the quality of the team and how strong you are on the pitch."