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Karanka open to transfer ‘surprises’

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LONDON — Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka (pic) is open to more signings before the transfer deadline tomorrow despite his side’s strong start to their Premier League campaign.

An uninspiring 0-0 draw away to West Brom on Sunday took Middlesbrough to five points from their first three games and secured their first clean sheet of the new season.

Karanka had been left disappointed last Wednesday when his side crashed out of the League Cup following a 2-1 defeat after extra time to Fulham at Craven Cottage.

But Karanka, a former Real Madrid defender, was delighted with the response of his players at The Hawthorns and credited a strong transfer window for their promising first few weeks of the campaign.

“It was an important point because after last Wednesday we played 120 minutes and lost the game,” Karanka told Sky Sports.

“West Brom are a difficult team to play so I am pleased with the players.

“The discipline was good and the second half in particular, it was not easy to play the way we wanted. But if you keep this spirit we will win games.

“This team have been fighting to get into the Premier League. We have learned you always have to be 100 per cent in this league. I am pleased we have an international break to recover.

“Now we are five points on the table because the club have done well in the transfer market. I have almost the squad I wanted in pre-season.

“Now it’s just about adding the right players because the squad are almost full. The market is the market and surprises can happen.”
—Agencies