I can emulate past managerial greats at Boro, vows Woodgate
Jonathan Woodgate is planning to follow in the footsteps of England boss Gareth Southgate as he launches his managerial career at home-town club Middlesbrough.
The 39-year-old has been appointed as Boro's head coach on a three-year contract after chairman Steve Gibson, as he has done in the past with Bryan Robson, Steve McClaren, Southgate and Aitor Karanka, handed the reins to a first-time boss.
Southgate and McClaren have since both gone on to manage England, while Robson presided over the club's first Premier League adventure and Karanka guided the Teessiders back into the top flight in 2016.
Asked if he too could use his time at the Riverside as a launchpad, Woodgate said: "Those managers have had great success and been incredible managers, especially Gareth, who has gone on to be England manager and has done an unbelievable job.
"This is the start of my pathway and hopefully it builds up like that."
Gibson appointed former defender Woodgate, who made a total of 112 appearances for the club during a glittering career which also took him to Leeds, Newcastle, Real Madrid, Tottenham and Stoke.
Asked what he had seen in Woodgate which he had also observed in some of his predecessors, the chairman said: "Basically the same qualities I saw in the others, a real determination, and great football history."