Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka says he is proud of his team’s position in the Championship promotion race, but acknowledges that they have to continue fighting to achieve their goals.
Boro are second in the league and have not lost in seven games, with their last win a 2-0 triumph over Derby in front of the television cameras which underlined their progress and potential.
Today they face an Ipswich side who are equally as strong, and have an eight-game unbeaten run to protect at Portman Road.
Karanka said: “It’s good for us to be at the top of the division; when you look at where we are you can be proud.
“It’s not a coincidence because we’ve been working hard to be in this position but now we have to keep working hard in the same way and move on to our next game. Of course, if someone asked me in August would I take where we are now in December I would have.
“And if I was asked about our position right now I would say it’s very good, but we have to fight for more.
“That’s the team spirit we have and the main thing for me is that the players always want more.
“Ipswich is going to be another interesting, very tough game against a very typical Championship team.
“They have a lot of quality and are strong and powerful so it’s a good test for us, but when we play them we have to think about our own game.
“Mick McCarthy is a successful coach here in England and everyone speaks well of him because he’s a very good manager. Last week it was Derby, who for me are the best team in the league under Steve McClaren, who was very successful here. We beat them, so we have to keep going in the same way.”