Following seven straight seasons in the Championship, Middlesbrough moved into the 2016 summer transfer window with an ambitious recruitment policy.
An influx of new signings were welcomed to the Riverside Stadium but one transfer really captured the imagination of football fans.
Indeed, an unsuccessful debut season with Valencia saw Alvaro Negredo fall down the pecking under at the Mestalla, and Boro were on hand to capitalise on his availability.
The former Manchester City star affectionately nicknamed as ‘the beast’ by supporters agreed to a season-long loan on the 20th July 2016.
Here’s how supporters reacted to the news shortly after it broke…
Negredo to Boro be some good business.
— Skinny Huncho (@HussunM) July 20, 2016
really really good signing #Middlesbrough
— Andrew (@_A_n_d_r_e_w_s) July 20, 2016
Boro going mad on signings valdes and negredo!
— LORD Kane Firth (@kanofirth) July 20, 2016
Negredo is a fantastic signing for Middlesbrough.
— Sir Johnny Love Buttons (@johnny_buttons) July 20, 2016
Negredo a HUGE signing for Boro
— James Whittaker (@northstokie) July 20, 2016
Great bit of business from Middlesbrough by the way with Negredo
— Brad Hunt (@bradhunt_) July 20, 2016
Negredo’s decision caught plenty of people by surprise and he was widely regarded as a coup due to his short and sweet career with Man City.
The Spanish centre-forward established a prolific partnership with Sergio Aguero during his time at the Etihad and he managed to notch 23 goals and provide 8 assists from 49 appearances for the club.
A strong physical presence with a deft first-touch and clinical poachers instinct to match, Negredo was a menacing prospect for Premier League defenders to deal with during his time at City but he failed to emulate that level of performance at Boro.
The initial hype surrounding his arrival culminated when he scored just 11 minutes into his debut against Stoke City, but excitement was rapidly replaced by disappointment as his next goal at the Riverside did not arrive until mid-December.
He finished the season with a respectable 9 goals and 4 assists from 36 appearances, but a lack of goal-scoring talent aside from Negredo sealed Boro’s fate as they were immediately relegated to the Championship after clinching just 28 points.
Negredo’s shock transfer certainly evoked plenty of excitement in the north east however, ultimately, a lack of quality throughout the squad failed to bring the best out of their marquee signing.
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