Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Club News

Renewing old acquaintances...

A lot has happened since Tony Mowbray and Jonathan Woodgate first crossed paths..

16 August 2019

Sponsored by

Tony Mowbray and Jonathan Woodgate first crossed paths almost 30 years ago, when the Rovers boss was still playing for Middlesbrough, whilst a 10-year-old Woodgate, the current Boro chief, was only starting his youth career.

We noticed the photo above via Woodgate's own Instagram account earlier this week and just felt that with the gaffer's peroxide blond hair and suspect scarf, it was just too good not to put to good use.

The Rovers boss popped along to Nunthorpe Athletic, where Woodgate was a member of the club's youth squad before going on to have a stellar senior career with the likes of Leeds United, Newcastle United, Real Madrid, Boro, Tottenham Hotspur and Stoke City.

Little did either of them know then that Mowbray would sign the defender for Boro in 2012, and tomorrow they come up against each other as managers for the first time.

“Woody’s early into his tenure and I think the supporters will be very patient and understanding," Mowbray said when discussing the 39-year-old's first job as a boss.

“They’ll take confidence from scoring three goals at Luton Town the last time they hit the road and we will have to make sure they feel our quality in possession, our pace and strength.

“I think Woody’s career, when you think of the likes of [Steven] Gerrard, [Frank] Lampard, [Wayne] Rooney starting to get into coaching, Jonathan Woodgate has played for Real Madrid and reached a Champions League semi-final with Leeds United and played for Tottenham Hotspur.

“Does he deserve to have a go? I think so. In six months time he’ll know what it’s like to win as a manager, draw as a manager and lose as a manager. He’ll see how it feels and how the emotion really grips you as a manager.”

Our gaffer still has a family home in the Middlesbrough area and admits he's had plenty of discussions about Woodgate's summer appointment and this weekend's game in recent weeks.

And he's urged the Rovers supporters to play their part in hopefully the first three point haul of the season on home turf.

“I’m just a normal bloke really, yet when I go home I’ve got such an ugly face I’m instantly recognisable on Teesside," Mowbray explained.

"There doesn’t seem to be any hiding places there, even when you’ve got your face under a hood.

“Everybody tells you what they’re thinking about the Boro and everyone has an opinion. I support Woody as well as I can as everybody has to start somewhere.

“I would imagine that Middlesbrough will bring a lot of supporters to our home with it being only one-and-a-half to two hours maximum up the road.

“We need to make sure that Ewood Park is bouncing. I was at my son’s Under-10s game at the weekend and every dad I spoke to that morning told me that they would be at our game at Ewood," he added.

“I think almost half of Teesside will be coming, so let’s hope there’s a bumper crowd and we put on a performance to get a result for us and get us up and running in the league.

“We’ll look to take the confidence from the win from Tuesday night."

View this post on Instagram

Blackburn on Saturday and Tony Mowbray. I remember being so happy when I first met him as a 10 year old playing for Nunthorpe Athletic #BoroLegend #UTB

A post shared by Jonathan Woodgate (@jonathanwoodgate39) on

Advertisement block