In our latest instalment of the Transfer Flashback series, we take a look back at a certain moment and look at how things might have changed those initial reactions.
A number of Middlesbrough fans seemed quite happy when Aden Flint was sold by the club to Cardiff this summer.
BBC reported that the 30-year-old swapped Teesside for Wales in July in a transfer that earned ‘Boro £4m plus add-ons, having come to the club from Bristol City for £7m the previous year.
In the wake of the deal being completed, Hartlepool Mail writer Joe Nicholson felt that it was a sensible move from Middlesbrough’s point of view, albeit with the caveat that they risked being light on centre-back options.
Nicholson wrote in the Hartlepool Mail: “Many supporters weren’t convinced by Flint during his time at the Riverside.
“The defender’s height and aerial prowess did prove useful in his own penalty area, yet, at the other end of the pitch, he scored an underwhelming one goal all season.
“Flint’s distribution and ability on the ball also came under scrutiny, which would have been an issue under new head coach Jonathan Woodgate.”
The statistics from WhoScored.com back up some of Nicholson’s assertions about Flint at Middlesbrough – he won an impressive 4.9 aerial duels per game but had a mediocre passing success rate of just 70.5%.
The defender’s scoring return had indeed plummeted at the Riverside Stadium, with a solitary goal in 39 Championship appearances. In the same number of league games the previous year with Bristol City, he scored eight times. [via TransferMarkt.co.uk]
When Flint’s departure from Teesside was confirmed, these Middlesbrough fans on Twitter seemed quite pleased to see him go:
where’s the party?
— Ryan (@RyanWilsonUTB) July 19, 2019
Not at all bothered by this as long as we invest it wisely
— Mike (@Michaelallen_99) July 19, 2019
Outstanding business by the club !
— Charlie Teasdale (@Cteasdale95) July 19, 2019
— David Mellor (@davidpaulmellor) July 19, 2019
Aden Flint at Boro
Seemed a lovely man
Good for the dressing room
On the pitch, the turning circle of a tractor and the not much more ability, disaster of a signing if we really got/get anywhere near £6m the club have done very well #Boro
— Andrew (@wheatmann5477) July 19, 2019
Cheese turns quicker than Aden flint
— Blain (@BlainAllinson96) July 19, 2019
Given the impressive start that Flint has made to his Cardiff career, perhaps those unflattering views about the defender have been misplaced.
The 30-year-old is averaging an excellent six successful aerial duels per game, up from 4.9 last season, and he is also averaging more tackles (1.4) and interceptions (one) per game for Cardiff than at ‘Boro, where his respective averages were 0.9 and 0.7 per game. [via WhoScored.com]
Dael Fry has a higher aerial duels average of seven per game, but Flint’s match average is still notably higher than Middlesbrough defenders Daniel Ayala (5.1) and Ryan Shotton (3.5). The Cardiff man has also averaged 5.3 clearances per game, only slightly lower than Ayala’s 5.4 and significantly higher than Fry’s 3.7 and Shotton’s 3.6.
In the match at the Cardiff City Stadium, Flint won five aerial duels and two tackles, as well as making four clearances and one interception. [via WhoScored.com]
Although Middlesbrough have still conceded one goal fewer than Cardiff in the Championship so far this season, Flint’s solid start with Neil Warnock’s side suggests that his departure from Teesside ought not to have been hailed so emphatically by some ‘Boro supporters.
Middlesbrough fans, has your opinion of Flint’s departure from the club changed since his move in July? Share your views by commenting below!
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