Middlesbrough manager, Garry Monk, is desperately trying to ward off the advances of Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool for defender, Ben Gibson.
- Middlesbrough set to frustrate Arsenal and Chelsea by keeping star despite relegation
- Gibson away with England team
- Monk wants to keep Gibson
- Targets promotion next season
Following Boro’s relegation last season, Monk’s side isn’t in the strongest position when it comes to keeping their best players, and while Ben Gibson’s uncle, Steve, is the owner of the club, the 24-year-old could find it hard to turn down a move to one of England’s biggest teams.
Monk insists that Boro want to keep Gibson, as he’s a ‘focal point’ in a team eyeing promotion next year.
“Ben is obviously a big focal point for this club,” the manager said.
“I’ve watched him over the last couple of seasons and I’m well aware of what he can bring to this football team.
“One thing I know from experience is that it’s important to keep your best players.
“Ben is one of those so it’s important that he stays.
“It’s important that we keep that core of players together to give ourselves the best possible opportunity of achieving the club’s ambition, which is to go back to the Premier League.
“Of course discussions will happen and it’s my job to sit down with the players and show them the way forward and how we are going to do things.
“This club is in full control of its own destiny and what it wants to do. I want to keep our best players and the club is in agreement with that.”
Gibson played 90 minutes in every single one of Boro’s Premier League games last season, even managing to score and assist once.
The England international was Boro’s highest ranked player on Squawka by far, has a pass accuracy rate of 84% and made zero defensive errors. He also made eight defensive actions on average per game, and created three chances overall.