Middlesbrough manager Tony Pulis was disappointed with the underwhelming January transfer window his team endured, recognising fans’ frustrations after a month which saw just two first-team players brought in.
Boro missed out on a number of targets and failed to bring in any players on deadline day, and Pulis accepted that they wouldn’t be taking the same momentum from the window as some of their promotion rivals.
“I’m disappointed,” he said. “I think everybody around the football club will be disappointed.
“There’s no hiding the fact that there’s players we wanted to bring into the club that we’ve not been able to.
“There’s areas of the team that ever since I joined the football club, 13, 14 months ago that I’ve wanted to strengthen and unfortunately we’ve not been able to do that again.”
Rajiv van La Parra and John Obi Mikel were the only players brought in in January with Danny Batth, Grant Leadbitter and Harry Chapman among those to have left.
I’ve had three windows here and I’ve signed three permanent players. You’re hoping and praying you’d do more than that.Tony Pulis
“In some respects it’s made the team a little bit weaker than stronger,” admitted Pulis.
“When you think of Danny going to Stoke, that’s left us a little bit weaker there.
“Mikel and Van La Parra are good signings and will help us at the back end of the season, I’m sure.
“I’ve had three windows here and I’ve signed three permanent players - McNair, Saville and Flint.
“You’re hoping and praying you’d do more than that.”
Despite transfer failings, Pulis refused to lay any blame with chairman Steve Gibson, who he noted had invested huge amounts of money into the club under the stewardship of Garry Monk.
His overall message was one of togetherness, saying that now more than ever, the team would need the support of the fanbase.