After a 3-1 win over Stoke City at the weekend, Middlesbrough’s play-off hopes are still alive as they take it to the final day.
However, just winning is not enough for them as they are relying on either Sheffield United or Luton Town to slip up too.
33-year-old Jonny Howson has been an important part of the Boro side this year winning player of the year but is also one of the players out of contract this summer.
However, the midfielder has insisted his mind is solely focused on the job his side have to do going into their final game rather than anything to do with his own future, as he told BBC Sport (via Teesside Live): We’ve taken it to the last game of the season and we’ll see what happens. All we can do is take care of ourselves and then we’ll see if that’s enough. When you are relying on other teams that is disappointing but in football anything can happen and we just have to take care of our business next weekend.
“It’s nice that we’ve got something to play for. I’ve had it a few times in my career where you go into the final games with nothing left to play for and, me personally, I don’t enjoy that. It’ll be even nicer if another team helps us out and we get into them play-offs though! No doubt there will be plenty of chances throughout the game next weekend.
“I think the biggest thing is, we need to go to Preston and win. If we fall short, we fall short, but what we don’t want to do is come off that pitch next weekend having slipped up, particularly is Sheffield United have slipped up as well because that’s like a double blow.”
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When asked about his future with the club, Howson responded: “I’m not too sure at this stage.
“It was mentioned that we will wait until the end of the season and we’re not at the end of the season yet so we’ll see what happens. Hopefully I can give you that same answer after next weekend as well!”
Chris Wilder’s choice to wait and discuss next season’s contracts until the summer is a brilliant idea as it ensures that all his players remain focused on the task they have with Middlesbroughm and they continue to play for their future.
From Howson’s comments, it seems like that is exactly the case as he is looking forward to his side’s upcoming game knowing exactly what is needed from them and what they want to achieve.
Furthermore, it is clear that the player desires the season to continue longer than this Saturday which would mean seeing Boro in the play-offs and as it stands, he is not overly concerned about his future.
That being said, despite his age, given that Howson received the player of the year award from Middlesbrough this season, he should be feeling hopeful about his future at the club.