‘I love Boro but business is business’ - City ace won’t give former club any favours
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Ben Gibson admits he will forever be in Middlesbrough’s debt but that won’t stop him looking to get one over his former club on Saturday.
Gibson will head back to where it all began for him in football this weekend with Norwich. Boro gave the defender his opportunity as a youngster and were even there for him when it all went wrong at Burnley.
The Teessiders let him train there to keep fit after falling out of favour at Turf Moor and it set up his summer move to the Canaries, where he has fitted straight in at the heart of Daniel Farke’s back four.
“It’s going to be bizarre playing against Boro,” he admitted. “It’s not an occasion I’ll enjoy, it’s certainly not a game I put on my list to say I’m buzzing to play against Middlesbrough.
“I clearly love the club, it’s my home, the team I grew up supporting, but as far as I’m concerned it’s business if I’m selected.”
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“That stadium when it’s full and the team are on a good run, like Middlesbrough are at the minute, would be rocking if fans were allowed in.
“I’ve had memories there that will last me a lifetime, not just as a player but as a supporter. I wish the fans were in but that’s the nature of the world right now.
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“I’ll drop a text in with some of the lads beforehand and have a bit of crack, probably with the staff as much as anything.
“I know the staff a lot better than some of the lads now. We’re friends, some of the staff are as close as family, but this is strictly business on Saturday. We’re on a run of seven unbeaten, if selected I’ll be desperate to win the game. I’m employed by Nowich. I owe it to supporters here and we’re desperate to keep the run going.”
Gibson is playing with a smile on his face again and has shown signs of getting back to being the defender that was talked about as a future England international when he was at the Riverside.
He is revelling in the responsibility Farke has placed on him and the way the German likes his defenders to play.
“I’m absolutely delighted with the way things are going here,” Gibson told the Teesside Gazette.
“The transition has been seamless. The club has massive similarities with Middlesbrough, a family club, they try and take care of you in every aspect of your life.
“We’re really open and expansive, (and) like to dominate possession. I’m not giving any secrets anyway, we like to play out from the back and really control games.
“I’m enjoying getting it through the thirds, being comfortable with the ball and in possession. I honestly can’t speak highly enough of the club, structure, the place, it’s a beautiful part of the world.”