Middlesbrough tipped to face nervy Play-Off campaign
The Championship Play-Offs has provided some of the most intense yet rewarding footballing moments over recent years.
For every dream made true under the iconic Wembley arch, the other sides are let with the ultimate heartache- a feeling that Middlesbrough fans know all too well.
After a run of poor results, Michael Carrick’s side find themselves eight points behind Sheffield United in the automatic promotion places despite playing one more game than the Blades.
Since their 2-1 triumph against Chelsea in the 1988 final, Boro are yet to win promotion to the Premier Leagye through the Play-Offs after three attempts.
Three years after that victory against Chelsea, Middlesbrough found themselves in the Championship Play-Offs once again.
Boro joined Brighton, Millwall and Notts County in the end-of-season campaign, but fell to defeat in the semi-final to the latter.
After a 1-1 draw in the home leg at Ayresome Park, Notts County edged out Boro in the second leg with a 1-0 victory.
24 years after that defeat, Middlesbrough fell victim to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Alex Neil’s Norwich City, with former player Cameron Jerome ultimately grabbing the winner.
Aitor Karanka’s side had managed to ease past Brentford with a 5-1 aggregate win in the Semi-Final, but ultimately failed to get over the final hurdle against the Canaries.
Most recently, Middlesbrough were knocked out of the Play-Offs by the finest of margins.
Boro came up against the in-form team of the whole division at the time in Aston Villa, with the help of the magnificent Jack Grealish.
Villa just managed to secure a 1-0 away victory at the Riverside before limitting Boro to a 0-0 draw in the return leg at Villa Park.
Michael Carrick’s side look destined to be a part of the Championship Play-Offs this season, and as it stands will face Luton Town, Millwall and Blackburn Rovers at the end of the season.
Either way, it will certainly be a nervy end to the season for Boro as they look to finally secure promotion to the Premier League and put their Play-Off history to right.