The concept of “minnow teams” in the Premier League is fast losing ground as was the case last season when we saw an unprecedented amount of competition in, what is known as, the best league in the world. The beautiful success story of a club like Leicester City who played some quality football to win the title, ousting some very formidable sides show exactly how far a team can improve with practice.
The so called elitist hegemony among the clubs is now a thing of the past as most of the “historically great” and dominant clubs of the EPL have successively failed to create a mark for the past two seasons. Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC may be held as prime examples of this trend.
Not just Leicester but even teams like Tottenham and Southampton have been steadily rising through the ranks to become established and strong opponents. A team like Stoke City has maintained its place in the Premier League for nine consecutive seasons. Watford also had lukewarm success in the League last season and it is this trend that Middlesbrough will seek to emulate in the 2016/17 season.
After a fantastic run in the Championships, Boro look all set to face the challenges of the League head on. With whatever little that can be deduced from their Championship run last season and their current transfer activity, here are 5 reasons why Middlesbrough have it in them to be yet another Premier League success straight after promotion.
#1 Theoretically easy start
On paper, Middlesbrough look to have the ideal start to the season as their first five games are against teams that might just give them good practice for the remainder of the schedule. The way they are rearing to go, they might just give some of the teams a run for their money in their aim to the top. They open their campaign at home against a consistent Stoke City, a team as confident as they are about their upcoming season.
After that, they face Sunderland in their first away game before playing against West Brom and Crystal Palace. On paper, it seems like a steadily increasing difficulty level before they actually face the so-called big guns of the tournament. With most of the teams going through a transition phase this year, Middlesbrough may have their work cut out for them but if they can hold their own among a bunch of currently struggling teams, Middlesbrough are set to be the next success story of the newly promoted teams.