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Dublin: 14 °C Tuesday 20 August, 2019
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Ex-Chelsea midfielder Mikel back in England to boost Boro's promotion bid

The 31-year-old has signed with the Championship club until the end of the season.

Mikel captained Nigeria at last summer's World Cup.
Mikel captained Nigeria at last summer's World Cup.
Image: Xinhua News Agency/PA Images

FORMER CHELSEA MIDFIELDER, and Champions League winner, John Obi Mikel has returned to England to sign a short-term deal with Championship promotion hopefuls Middlesbrough. 

The 31-year-old has spent the last two years in China with Tianjin TEDA but moves to the Riverside for the remainder of the 2018/19 campaign as a free agent.

Mikel, who captained Nigeria at last summer’s World Cup in Russia, spent 11 years at Chelsea and is a significant addition to Middlesbrough’s ranks as the club bid to return to the top-flight.

During his time at Stamford Bridge, Mikel won two Premier League titles, three FA Cups and a Champions League crown, and had been linked with a host of European clubs, including Roma and Wolfsburg, after his contract with Tianjin TEDA expired last November. 

“I’m pleased to get him in. He is a man with a lot of experience and quality,” Middlesbrough boss Tony Pulis said. 

“He has a winning mentality and he wants to be here be a part of what we are looking to achieve.”

Mikel is Middlesbrough’s second signing of the January transfer window following the arrival of Rajiv van La Parra on loan from Huddersfield earlier in the month.

Pulis’ side are currently fifth in the Championship.

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Ryan Bailey

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