In an interview with The Northern Echo, Middlesbrough manager Neil Warnock admitted there is a problem at the club, but he said he is the man to put it right.

Middlesbrough succumbed to their fourth defeat in five games at the weekend, losing 2-1 at home to Queens Park Rangers. This means they have slipped to 11th in the Championship table and will be looking to next season with the play-offs now out of reach.

Manager Neil Warnock admitted that this is the ‘biggest challenge’ of his managerial career. There are players that do not want to be at the club, there are cliques to dismantle and an overhaul needed in the summer transfer window if they are to challenge for promotion.

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The Boro boss said he is already looking ahead to next season and issued a warning to the players in his dressing room.

“We have to get ready for July. It can’t come quick enough really,” he said.

“There are a lot of things I don’t understand. You get that at clubs. You get little cliques at clubs. As a manager you know they are there.

“I am sure if you spoke to two or three they will say I was the problem. Because they blame everyone else don’t they? That’s natural for footballers. I am not the problem. I have to solve the problem.”

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Eight players currently at the club will likely leave in just a couple of months time. Britt Assombalonga, Ashley Fletcher, Nathaniel Mendez-Laing, Marvin Johnson, and Jordan Archer are all out of contract, whereas loanees Neeskens Kebano, Marcus Bettinelli, and Yannick Bolasie will return to their parent clubs Fulham and Everton.

Boro have not got a large squad at present and purse strings are tight. Therefore it is likely Warnock will be looking to the free agent and loan markets in order to secure deals to help them achieve a place in the Championship top six come the end of next season in the hopes of getting promoted to the Premier League.