Garry Monk: Finding Out Boro's Fixtures Is Exciting For Everyone

He feels that anticipation will be building among club and supporters now that the season ahead has been mapped out.

“Everyone will have games in there which mean something to them, and that’s what’s exciting about today,” he said.

“It’s great for the fans, who get to plan their home games and away days. They’ll no doubt be looking at the derby matches with Sunderland.

“It’s the same for players as well, whether it’s former clubs or games with happy memories they’ll have certain matches they are looking forward to.

“From a manager’s perspective, it’s about planning for what’s ahead, when we’ll have a free week and when we’ll be playing Saturday-Tuesday football. The key is focusing on ourselves and how we’re going to get as many points as possible.”

The much-anticipated Tees-Wear derby dates arrive back-to-back with clashes with Monk’s former club Leeds United, amidst tough tests against Hull City and beaten play-off finalists Reading.

The Boro manager says seeing these fixtures in black and white highlights the challenge of the Championship as the club target an instant return to the Premier League.

“Personally I don’t tend to look for any individual game – you have to play everyone at some point,” he said.

“But the fixtures show just what the league is and what you’re going to face. 

“It just shows you how congested and competitive the league can be. The fixtures will come at you thick and fast, but that’s exciting as well. 

“It’s a really good challenge, and one we’re all looking forward to – so we’ll take each and every one of these games as it comes.”

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