Middlesbrough midfielder Jonny Howson insists that the only fair way to decide promotion and relegation is by completing the season, despite the fact Boro would survive relegation if things were decided on Points Per Game.
Jonathan Woodgate has endured a tough first year in management, with Boro still not out of the woods in terms of relegation if the remaining nine games of the season are played.
Currently, Boro sit 19th in the Championship table, two points clear of Charlton Athletic, who are 22nd and in the final relegation spot. If things are played to a conclusion, Boro, Stoke City, Huddersfield Town, Wigan Athletic, Hull City will be battling to avoid dropping into the bottom-three.
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In the eyes of Howson, however, the only fair way to decide things in the Championship is by playing to a conclusion.
“Speaking from a personal point of view I believe you’ve got to finish the season,” he said to TeessideLive.
“There will be complications and some people will be upset, but whatever happens that’s going to be the case.
“We can’t do anything about what’s happened, but I believe to get an outcome you need to finish it otherwise it’s not fair with regards to relegation, promotion, play-offs, you need to complete the full season.
“How many times have we seen it when it’s come down to the last few games and someone comes from nowhere to get promoted or escapes relegation, so the only fair way out is to finish the season, however that happens.”
This week, clubs are starting to return to training grounds and putting the initial plans in place for the campaign to resume.
So far, the German Bundesliga has restarted, but Europe’s other leading divisions are awaiting the green light.
This might be surprising to some fans given Boro would be out of the woods in terms of relegation if the season is scrapped.
However, it is testament to the professionalism of someone like Howson that he wants to resume and get things finished the final way.
It’s been a tough year for Boro, but there should be faith in that group of players to win their battle against the drop.
Thoughts? Let us know!