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The best Middlesbrough XI since the Millennium – Right-backs



Middlesbrough have endured more than their fair share of ups and downs since the turn of the millennium.

After spending much of the nineties between the top two tiers of English football, the Teessiders enjoyed a sustained period of success in the 00s as they moved away from being relegation strugglers to a side within 90 minutes of a major European title.

Steve McClaren oversaw the bulk of that revolution as he built a side with some of Europe’s highest profile names, changing the brand of football on offer at the Riverside Stadium to one which was the envy of many top flight clubs up and down the country.

A first major trophy came Middlesbrough’s way in 2004, before two successive seasons in the UEFA Cup which brought plenty of wonderful memories for supporters as they reached the final in 2006.

But for every up there’s a down as the club suffered relegation to the Championship in 2009 – something which took seven years to address as they made their return to the top flight under Aitor Karanka.

That return, however, was short-lived as they suffered relegation that same season as they find themselves once again in the process of rebuilding for their next journey to the top flight.

There’s been plenty of top players at the club during those 20 years, and in a new series we take a look at the best Middlesbrough XI to turn out since the turn of the Millennium.

This edition features the right-backs as we look at the FOUR contenders to make it into our side.

Can you name where these 15 Middlesbrough players started their career?

1 of 15

Where did Tomas Mejias start his playing career?

Danny Mills

He might have only been with Middlesbrough for one year, but what a year it was.

The full-back arrived on a season-long loan deal from Leeds United and was an instant hit due to his no-nonsense approach to defending – something which was always going to be a sure-fire winner with the home fans.

Of course Mills’ defining moment was his key role in the side’s Carling Cup final victory over Bolton Wanderers – a day which will ensure that he is remembered as a true club favourite.

Stuart Parnaby

He may not have been the best full-back of the Millennium, but in hindsight you can’t knock his loyalty to the club.

Parnaby joined the club’s academy at the age of 10 and spent 15 years with the club as he established himself as a first team option.

His biggest moment will surely be starting for Middlesbrough in the UEFA Cup final in 2006 – a game which will no doubt be the biggest moment of his career.

Justin Hoyte

He was signed for a fee of £3million after Luke Young moved to Tottenham Hotspur, and stuck around for far longer than many expected.

Despite being in the side that saw Middlesbrough relegated in 2009, Hoyte was a regular feature at the Riverside Stadium over five years as he looked to help the club secure promotion to the Premier League.

Hoyte may not be a name that is held is hugely high regard among supporters, but he deserves credit for sticking with the club during an incredibly difficult patch.

Emilio Nsue

Signed as a free agent in the summer of 2014, few would have guessed the impact that the versatile star would have.

Nsue was a winger and a forward at international level, but found his home as a forward-thinking right-back under Aitor Karanka in a side that would go on to reach the play-off final, before securing promotion the following year.

There ain’t nobody like Nsue.

But who gets your vote to be included in out Middlesbrough XI of the Millennium? Decide below!

Who is Middlesbrough's best right-back of the Millennium?

Danny Mills

Danny Mills

Stuart Parnaby

Stuart Parnaby

Justin Hoyte

Justin Hoyte

Emilio Nsue

Emilio Nsue

North East-based EFL writer and aspiring author

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: The best Middlesbrough XI since the Millennium – Right-backs

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