Middlesbrough pulled off quite the coup in January when they signed John Obi Mikel on a free transfer, with the 31-year-old signing a deal to the end of the season.
The 85-cap Nigeria international had spent the last year-and-a-half plying his trade in China with Tianjin TEDA. Whilst such a time spent in such an uncompetitive division may have seen Obi Mikel arrive at the Riverside Stadium off the pace, he has in fact hit the ground running for Tony Pulis’ side.
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The former Chelsea man certainly brings plenty of experience to Boro, and he knows how to win. In his time at Stamford Bridge, the 6’2” midfielder won two Premier League titles, three FA Cups, and one Champions League crown, amongst other prizes. That kind of history of success could see him become a big influence in the dressing room for the Championship club, who are chasing promotion to the top flight this season.
Mikel is clearly committed to achieving yet more success with Boro. As quoted by Teesside Live, the experienced star is excited about the notion of securing promotion, saying: “If we manage to pull it off, it would be amazing. It would be up there as one of my greatest achievements…I’m still hungry and want to win trophies…I want to achieve something with this club and that is to get this club promoted.”
Obi Mikel is proving how serious he is about this ambition with the quality of his performances for the club. It should provide a great boost to both the squad and the club’s fanbase to know that a player of such pedigree is so determined to achieve success at the Riverside.