Tony Pulis: Under-fire boss says Middlesbrough can make play-offs

By Dafydd PritchardBBC Sport Wales at the Liberty Stadium
Tony Pulis
Tony Pulis saw his side beaten by League Two Newport County in the FA Cup on his last return to South Wales

Manager Tony Pulis insists Middlesbrough still believe they can reach the Championship play-offs despite losing their past six matches.

Boro were beaten 3-1 at Swansea City on Saturday, the first time since 2000 they have lost six games consecutively.

They remain eighth but are now four points adrift of the play-off places.

"It's not me believing, it's the players. You've got to get the players believing, and I think they believe they can do it," said Pulis.

"They'll have a day off tomorrow, clear their heads. At this time of the season, they're fit, it's just mental. It's just mental more than anything."

Middlesbrough fans called for Pulis to be sacked during Tuesday's home defeat against Bristol City and, although a small travelling contingent at the Liberty Stadium made for less vociferous opposition to the manager, there was still a strong sense of discontent in the away end.

But before the match at Swansea, Boro chairman Steve Gibson had reportedly indicated that he was willing to stand by Pulis.

"I came up to Middlesbrough for Steve and he's the man that counts," said Pulis.

"Whichever way you cook it, I came up for Steve and we've got a good relationship. He's a good fella."

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