In a transfer window in which Boro were linked with a host of players, including returns to the Riverside Stadium by fan favourites Albert Adomah and Adama Traore, along with scouting talent from League One in the form of Sunderland’s Josh Maja and Portsmouth’s Jamal Lowe, Boro eventually ended up with just two incomings.
Rajiv van La Parra
Boro started their transfer dealings early, before the January transfer window had even opened. Rajiv van La Parra was first linked with a move to Boro in mid-December and watched Boro’s 2-0 win over Ipswich Town the stands along side Steve Gibson.
The loan move for the Huddersfield Town winger was wrapped up when the transfer window officially opened, with then-Huddersfield Town boss David Wagner saying “Rajiv is 27 and understandably wants to play regular football.”
Boro boss Tony Pulis “he’s one of the players we were looking to add to the squad, he’s got tremendous pace.”
“I think he will be a really good signing for us and offers something that we’ve been looking for.”
Although joining Boro in the hope of regular football, the Dutchman has failed to claim a regular place in Boro’s starting XI.
John Obi Mikel
Rumours first surfaced that John Obi Mikel may be looking for a move back to English football surfaced on January 14th, when he was reportedly spotted at Boro’s Rockliffe Park training ground having held talks with Tony Pulis and the Boro hierarchy.
After meeting with Boro, Premier League side Crystal Palace and Championship rivals Aston Villa and Derby also made contact with the former Chelsea midfielder, however the Nigerianretuned to Rockliffe Park for further talks on January 21st before wrapping up the short-term deal 3 days later.
“I’m pleased to get him in. He is a man with a lot of experience and quality,” Tony Pulis said upon welcoming the Champions League winning midfielder.
“He has a winning mentality and he wants to be here to be a part of what we are looking to achieve.”
Mikel made his first Boro appearance in the FA Cup 4th round draw with League Two’s Newport County, after the game Mikel said “it has been easy to fit in. The lads are amazing and when you come to a dressing room together like it is then that helps.”
“We all have a good banter and that is what I have missed. I am here for that. To be part of a team.”
“I have until the end of the season here and we will see what happens. It is my aim, my goal, as is the dressing room, to get promoted to the Premier League.”
“It is a great club. It is a Premier League club. They should be in the Premier League. Hopefully we can achieve that.”