Middlesbrough of England midfielder, John Mikel Obi has received another addition to his lofty status at the English Championship club, as he has been handed a stand-in captain’s role by the coach, Tony Pulis.
In recognition of Mikel’s immense height of experience, with captain’s roles at almost every other team he has played for, Pulis felt no qualms in handing Boro’s skipper’s band to the January signing.
Mikel, who is current Super Eagles’ captain, was Nigeria’s under-23 team skipper en route to bronze at Rio 2016 Olympics as well as at Tianjin Teda of China in his first season in China, having also sparingly got the band at Chelsea on a number of occasions.
In keeping with that tradition, Mikel captained Middlesbrough for the first time and his status inspired the squad to a 2-0 win away to Bolton Wanderers at Macron Stadium on Tuesday.
It was a very symbolic return to winning ways for the side, under Mikel’s charge, as Boro had lost their last six games, such that Pulis would be glad with his choice of his stand-in captain for the matchday 41 tie, as his regular skipper, George Friend, was ruled out with injury.
Mikel was an apt choice by Pulis because, since joining Boro from Teda in January, he has started the last 13 games for the Riverside club, who are two points out of the promotion playoff spots, with five games to go.