Tribal Football - Football News, Soccer News, Transfers & Rumours Latest Articles for Middlesbrough Mon, 29 May 2023 19:22:07 +1000 Tribal Football <![CDATA[Championship (p)review: The £180M all-or-nothing playoff - Coventry City vs Luton Town]]> <p>I'm the first to mock a silly football cliche, but some football cliches stand the test of time because they're true. The football media has spent years teeing up the Championship play-off final as the '(insert vast amount of money) game'. It started to get really comical when the number was 100m but now I think we're up to 180m. Even though it does come across as fairly crass hype, you can't argue with the sentiment or indeed the numbers behind it. <br> <br> The football world is now funded by TV broadcast money, for most clubs that is by far the most important number throughout their balance sheet. A Championship team who isn't getting Premier League parachute payments can expect to make 7-8m in broadcast money in a second tier season. Once they get promoted that number skyrockets to 100m and even if they're relegated in the first season the next two years of Championship broadcast money are elevated to 45m and 35m due to Premier League parachute payments. There's your 180m, win the Championship play-off final and across the three years it's all yours, lose and you're back in the shake up with the rest of the crowd trying to make the big league. <br> <br> This season Coventry and Luton being in the final changes the paradigm and, Middlesbrough and Sunderland fans aside, many would say for the better. If variety is truly the spice of life then surely it'll be great news for the Premier League to have two sides that have not been in the top level for many a long year. It's really hard for a perceived underdog side to make it into the top two and get to the Premier League, but the play-offs is the place where it can happen. Brentford, Huddersfield, Swansea, Blackpool and Hull all made the leap to the top level via the Wembley play-off route and were all pretty unfamiliar faces to the latest generation of Premier League fans at the time of their promotion. <br> <br> Despite the excellent recent rise of both clubs, for either of the two finalists a win would be utterly transformational. Luton had a horrible fall down to the national league not so long ago and have powered their way up to a third placed Championship finish this season. They couldn't have been closer to the Premier League in terms of their place in the pyramid and now being one game away in the play-off final. Much is made of their unique Kenilworth Road stadium and how it would fit into the Premier League landscape, I think it'd be a lot of fun. Coventry have been synonymous with off-field issues since their fall from the top flight. Whether it be rowing over exorbitant rents with former owners, having to play at Northampton and Birmingham throughout disputes, or even this season a potential standoff with new stadium owners. Neither club have had it great for the past couple of decades and only the most joyless would begrudge either side a happy ending to an already brilliant story. <br> <br> It's very easy to assume the 'go up, take the money, come back stronger' argument when it comes to Coventry or Luton in the Premier League next season. Part of me feels that's really sensible and the other part feels that's really unfair. The prudent long term view that was brilliantly executed in the last decade by Burnley says you don't take the big gamble in Premier League year one, you come down stronger and with a big financial advantage win promotion back to the top level. At this point, although a couple of seasons have gone by, the club is in theory in better shape and the gamble is far less. Burnley fans would tell you to be patient after they did the trick and spent eight straight seasons in the Premier League, Norwich fans would say just go for it after they played the waiting game only to waste their well earned transfer bounty. Of course Luton and Coventry would be hot favourites to be relegated if they go up, but you never know how many teams could self-destruct and how far a winning mentality built up over years of sound strategy, good recruitment and general growth and improvement can take you. <br> <br> And that's probably the best bit about Coventry and Luton being the Championship play-off finalists, the fact I don't particularly fear for the loser. I've just talked about teams gambling once they're in the Premier League, plenty have put the house on just winning the play-offs and fallen spectacularly when they've lost in the final. Derby County, Reading and Blackpool will all be in League 1 next season having been in Championship play-off finals over the past decade, while Sheffield Wednesday will be in the League 1 edition on Monday still trying to claw back the sliding door that closed on them after they lost the 2016 final. Luton and Coventry haven't got to Wembley by gambling, so maybe the truer comparisons would be Barnsley and Huddersfield who had big collapses following recent failed play-off campaigns, but again I'd question whether similar exoduses of management and star players would occur with these finalists. <br> <br> So that's my take on the best and worst case scenarios for winning and losing, and if you think I'm avoiding the elephant in the room of predicting who is going to be victorious then you're right. I am! It's such a close one to call, Luton maybe have the better team, Coventry the better star players. Luton bossed the regular season, Coventry were so knockout savvy in the semifinals. I can see it being super tight, maybe extra time, maybe penalties. The winner will richly deserve the fairytale ending to their brilliant rise and, with due respect to Brentford and Huddersfield wins, will be the underdog story of the decade in the '180m game'.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Wed, 24 May 2023 21:36:52 +1000 Benjamin Bloom <![CDATA[Middlesbrough fear losing free-scoring striker Akpom]]> <p>Middlesbrough are fearful of losing this season's top scorer Chuba Akpom.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Mon, 22 May 2023 15:32:40 +1000 Ansser Sadiq <![CDATA[Man City preparing to sell Steffen]]> <p>Manchester City are preparing to sell Zack Steffen.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Sun, 21 May 2023 23:54:45 +1000 Paul Vegas <![CDATA[Championship review: Robins proves himself at Coventry; Mpanzu a Luton icon; Carrick the real deal for Middlesbrough]]> <p>It's now to one game and two teams. We review the Championship promotion playoff semifinals which now has two sentimental favourites in Coventry City and Luton Town preparing for Wembley and a battle for a place in the Premier League... <br></p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Sun, 21 May 2023 19:56:58 +1000 Benjamin Bloom <![CDATA[Coventry stun Middlesbrough to reach Championship play-off final]]> <p>Underdogs Coventry City sealed their place in the Championship play-off final on Wednesday night.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Thu, 18 May 2023 15:31:24 +1000 Ansser Sadiq <![CDATA[Berbatov: Rooney destined for Man Utd return]]> <p>Former Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov has predicted an old teammate will manage the club in the near future.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Wed, 17 May 2023 14:41:33 +1000 Ansser Sadiq <![CDATA[Wolves attacker Ryan Giles: A pleasure to play for Middlesbrough]]> <p>Ryan Giles feels his career has now taken off thanks to a successful loan with Middlesbrough.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Sun, 14 May 2023 10:17:32 +1000 Paul Vegas <![CDATA[Championship review: Luton stun us all; BBD pays back Sunderland boss Mowbray; Coventry v Middlesbrough shootout]]> <p>Sunderland gatecrashed the playoffs, Luton Town proved what a well run club they are and Coventry City vs Middlesbrough promises to be a shootout classic. All this and more from the final round of the regular Championship season...<br></p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Thu, 11 May 2023 19:21:08 +1000 Benjamin Bloom <![CDATA[Solskjaer: Carrick will be Man Utd manager if he wants to be]]> <p>Former Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer can see Michael Carrick eventually returning to Old Trafford.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Wed, 10 May 2023 22:37:05 +1000 Paul Vegas <![CDATA[Morrison convinced Archer will stay with Aston Villa]]> <p>Former Crystal Palace and Birmingham City striker Clinton Morrison is certain Cameron Archer will have involvement with the Aston Villa first team next season.</p><a href=''>Read more on Tribal Football</a> Wed, 10 May 2023 03:15:01 +1000 Carlos Volcano