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Southgate won't walk away
17 May 2009 - 11:11:00
Gareth Southgate has vowed to stay on as Middlesbrough boss even if they lose their Premier League status.
Boro's survival hopes have been left hanging by the narrowest of threads following Saturday's 1-1 draw with Aston Villa.
The 19th-placed Teessiders can now only survive if they win at West Ham United on the final day of the season and Hull City lose by a significant enough scoreline against Manchester United.
But despite relegation now being a virtual certainty and admitting to being hurt by the boos which rang around the Riverside Stadium at full-time, Southgate has vowed to fight on whatever division the club finds itself in next season.
"It has an impact I have to say," he said of the fans' jeers. "But I think emotions run high after a game like that, mine were high and so were the emotions of the supporters.
"I'd be lying if I said it didn't hurt, but I'm big enough to deal with it.
"Whatever happens at the end of the season, I'm going to go on holiday and, if we didn't stay in this league I'd want to take the team back up, I'm pretty clear on that."
Meanwhile, Southgate is refusing to accept that Boro's season will end in relegation until it is mathematically impossible to stay up.
He added: "It's going to be a very tall order for us now. We just have to try to win our game and see what happens elsewhere.
"But there are sure to be twists and turns on the way."