Boro seal Woodgate capture
By Alex Livie
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Middlesbrough have confirmed the permanent signing of Jonathan Woodgate.
Middlesbrough have confirmed the permanent signing of Jonathan Woodgate from Real Madrid.
The defender has got his career back on track since moving to The Riverside on loan from Real Madrid.
Having impressed on Teesside, it had been suggested Real would look to bring Woodgate back to Spain in the summer.
However, the Madrid giants opted not to summon the England international back to Spain and this allowed Boro to push through a deal.
The two clubs came to an agreement over a £7million deal and this allowed Woodgate to agree terms on a four-year contract with his home-town club.
Boro boss Gareth Southgate has admitted it is a huge coup for Boro to seal the permanent capture of Woodgate.
"It's a real boost for us, not only for now but in terms of planning for next season," said Southgate.
"The opportunity to bring in a player of this quality does not happen very often. We said when he signed on loan that it was a coup but to get him now on a permanent basis is massive for this club.
"He's shown us this season that he's as good as there is in the Premier League and that's not something I say lightly."
Southgate had made securing the services of Woodgate one of his top summer priorities and wrapping up the deal before the end of the season will enable the Teesside chief to explore other avenues.
Woodgate has missed only eight of the 41 games Boro have played since his arrival and he will provide a solid backbone for Southgate to build around.