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The FA Cup Fourth Round

Woodgate slams Championship

Middlesbrough defender Jonathan Woodgate has said that he does not "enjoy" playing in the Championship and is determined to take the club back to the Premier League.

Last Updated: 25/06/14 at 16:47 Post Comment

Jonathan Woodgate: Defender doesn't enjoy Championship football

Jonathan Woodgate: Defender doesn't enjoy Championship football

The 34-year-old former England international centre-back joined Boro from Stoke City in the summer of 2012.

Having featured for the likes of Newcastle United, Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur, Woodgate has now claimed that he is keen on featuring in the Premier League once again.

The former Leeds United defender has also criticised the Championship for its direct and long-ball approach, claiming that 'playing' football in the second tier of English football is "very hard".

"The Championship is a lot of long ball," GazetteLive quotes him as saying. "There's not enough time and space to play much pretty football.

"Players work as hard as they can, teams beaver away and close down quickly and don't let the opposition play open and expansive football.

"We'd all like to be able to do that: 'play'. But the Championship is a very hard league to actually 'play' in.

"There's not a lot of time on the ball out there. It’s non-stop, it’s hectic in the Championship. That's why you have to work well as a team and graft in every single game.

"You have to win the bread and butter battle against teams before you can think of being creative and entertaining.

"I really don't enjoy this league. I want this club to be back playing in the Premier League. That's what I came back to Boro for.

"I haven't fulfilled what I wanted to do when I came here. That hurts. The idea was to try and push the team back into the Premier League. But I'm sure, I'm positive, that we will be up and amongst it next season."

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