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Middlesbrough part company with Pulis

Credit: PA

Middlesbrough have parted company with manager Tony Pulis after the club missed out on the Sky Bet Championship play-offs.

The club confirmed on Friday morning that Pulis' contract would not be renewed, ending an 18-month reign on Teesside.

A club statement said: "Middlesbrough FC can confirm that the contract of manager Tony Pulis will not be extended."

Pulis arrived at the Riverside Stadium in December 2017 to replace Garry Monk at the helm and attempt to drag an expensively-assembled squad back into the Premier League at the first attempt in the wake of relegation.

However, Boro lost out to Aston Villa in the play-offs last season after finishing the campaign in fifth place, and despite being in contention for automatic promotion for much of the campaign which has just ended, they slipped away alarmingly and were ultimately pipped to a top-six spot by Derby.

Chairman 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.

"He has ensured that the club is stable and strong for the future. He leaves us in excellent condition."

Former Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel joins Middlesbrough on short-term deal

Mikel has signed for Tony Pulis' Middlesbrough Credit: @Boro

Champions League winning midfielder John Obi Mikel has joined Middlesbrough on a short term deal.

The former Chelsea man, 31, was a free agent following the end of his deal with Chinese Super League side Tianjin TEDA.

While reports had linked him to European giants AS Roma and Wolfsburg, Mikel was was keen to return to the U.K. where his family remained during his two year stint in China.

Boro boss Tony Pulis said of the acquisition, the club's second in the January window after Rajiv van La Parra joined on loan from Huddersfield earlier in the month,

"I'm pleased to get him in. He is a man with a lot of experience and quality.

"He has a winning mentality and he wants to be here be a part of what we are looking to achieve."

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Middlesbrough appoint Tony Pulis as new boss

Tony Pulis was sacked by West Brom and replaced by Alan Pardew. Credit: PA

Middlesbrough have appointed Tony Pulis as manager following the departure of Garry Monk.

The Sky Bet Championship club parted company with Monk on Saturday after the 2-1 victory at Sheffield Wednesday left them ninth in the table.

Pulis has been out of work since November when he left Premier League strugglers West Brom, but the Teesside club have now announced he will be the man they hope can lead them to promotion.

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Gareth Barry is now the Premier League record appearance holder

Gareth Barry broke Ryan Giggs' Premier League appearance record Credit: PA

Aged 36, West Brom midfielder Barry set a new Premier League appearance record, breaking that previously held by Ryan Giggs, and Pulis said of his captain for the evening: "Gareth has been a wonderful professional and still is.

"We hope he keeps performing like that until the end of the season."

In his programme notes, Wenger wrote: "It's an incredible achievement but he is a marvellous player.

"He's been underrated because he is always focused, determined, strong in the challenge, has good vision, a top-quality left foot and is also a very good defender.

"He's a very intelligent player on the pitch and breaking Ryan Giggs' record is a remarkable achievement because it shows this guy has dedicated his life to the game."

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