Video: 2016-17 Fixtures - Middlesbrough: North-east derby marks exciting return to Premier League

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MIDDLESBROUGH have been handed a first-day assignment at home to Stoke City on their return to the Premier League after a seven-season absence.

Aitor Karanka’s side will host the Potters on August 13 with their first away game of the season being a juicy north-east derby at Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on August 20.

Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka

Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka

Middlesbrough’s full 2016-17 Premier League fixture list

Click on the video above to get the thoughts of The YP’s Leon Wobschall on the season ahead for Boro

Boro’s opening month of the campaign looks a benign one on paper and they visit WBA on August 27 and then host Crystal Palace after the first international break on September 10.

But November, on the flip side of the coin, looks arduous, with the Teessiders starting off with a trip to Manchester City - where they famously staged a big FA Cup upset in 2014-15 - on November 5 before hosting Chelsea on November 19.

Boro finish off November with a trip to champions Leicester City on November 26.

Boro will host east coast rivals Hull City at the Riverside Stadium in a midweek date on December 3 and will make the reverse trip to the KC Stadium on April 4.

Over Christmas, the Teessiders visit Burnley on Boxing Day and end the calendar year at Old Trafford against Manchester United on December 31.

They start 2017 at home to Leicester on January 2.

Boro welcome Sunderland on March 11 and finish the season at Liverpool on May 21.