Middlesbrough goalkeeper Darren Randolph has claimed his teammates are enjoying life under new boss Jonathan Woodgate following Tony Pulis’ departure over the summer.
The Teesside outfit have had a mixed start to the season and currently find themselves 18th in the Championship heading into the international break, but they are unbeaten in their last three league outings.
This comes after former Middlesbrough captain Woodgate replaced Pulis as manager back in June, following the latter’s failure to secure a play-off spot for Boro at the end of last season.
Randolph was first choice between the sticks for both managers, as he was ever-present in the league last term and has also started all six matches in this campaign.
When the Republic of Ireland international was asked to compare the two managers, he identified a marked difference in playing style but claimed the Boro squad have enjoyed making this significant tactical transition.
“They’re both very hands on, they take the sessions, the only real difference is the style of football,” he told Teesside Live.
“I think under Tony we were a lot more compact and defensive minded, which enabled us to go and stay in games and nick some goals.
“Now, we’re more expansive and open and attacking, so the lads are all enjoying it.”
Randolph’s comments provide further evidence that Boro absolutely made the right decision to part company with Pulis over the summer and replace him with Woodgate.
Despite Woodgate’s lack of managerial experience, the former defender appears committed to delivering an attractive brand of football and it appears this has rubbed off on the players’ satisfaction.
Randolph stops short of criticising Pulis in the interview, but he certainly alludes to the fact that Woodgate’s playing strategy is much more enjoyable for the players to execute.
It may take some time before this game plan brings rewards for Woodgate’s side, but I think he could well bring success to Teesside if he is permitted plenty of time in the role.