Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Are the Changes a Sign of How New Boss Is Thinking?

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Are the Changes a Sign of How New Boss Is Thinking?

Article excerpt

Byline: PHILIP TALLENTIRE

THE Tony Pulis era didn't begin with a much-needed win.

Aston Villa were the Yuletide party-poopers, snatching all three points thanks to Robert Snodgrass's 75th minute header.

The result leaves Boro three points adrift of the top six in ninth position with a crucial game to come at Preston today.

Speaking in his press conference, Pulis said he wasn't happy with Villa's goal, insisting it was poor from a professional point of view.

He also said he would make changes for the Preston game and claimed he was bringing players on whom he didn't know.

Pulis also said he thought Boro had a good squad on paper and those players should be good enough to do well in the Championship.

Due to reporting restrictions placed on The Gazette we are not currently asking the manager questions but if we were, these would have been the issues we would have addressed.

What is the length of Pulis's Boro contract and will he be adding to the coaching staff? The Gazette understands that when Tony Pulis agreed to manage Boro some of the finer points of his contract had yet to be nailed down.

The terms of his deal are likely to have been agreed by now and the fans will be keen to see how long he'll be staying.

So far, Pulis hasn't brought in his own backroom team and used Jonathan Woodgate as a sounding board on Saturday.

But who will he be appointing behind the scenes and when can we expect more details? Was the decision to include George Friend at left-back tactical, or does Fabio have an injury? The Brazilian has been a regular starter at left-back for most of the campaign so far but wasn't in the 18 on Saturday.

Fabio was subbed at half-time on Boxing Day with George Friend retaining his place against Villa.

Pulis is thought to like big, strong full-backs and Friend certainly fits that description. …

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