Both Burnley and Hull are yet to make a single first-team signing since confirming their promotion to the Premier League at the first attempt, Middlesbrough have already secured six with the promise that their most exciting business is still to come.

Middlesbrough have recruited Denmark winger Viktor Fischer, La Liga defenders Bernardo Espinosa and Antonio Barragan, Dutch midfielder Marten De Roon, former Barcelona and Manchester United goalkeeper Victor Valdes and Hearts defender Jordan McGhee (loan).

Aitor Karanka has also dipped into his list of contacts to edge Boro towards deals for Champions League-proven centre back Neven Subotic, who is yet to hit his prime at 27, and Valencia striker Alvaro Negredo. He was one of the finest attackers in England as recently as 2013/14, netting 23 times in all competitions for Manchester City.

It puts Boro in a great position to thrive on their return to the Premier League after seven seasons away. Given how much more active they have been than Burnley and Hull and the fact that they finished six points ahead of the Tigers and just four behind Burnley, it seems remarkable that Boro are such a big price with bookies to be top promoted club (5/4), but this price is sure to disappear quickly on the Betfair Exchange.

It was the runners-up who acclimatised to the top flight best last term, with Watford taking the title race to the final day much as Boro did, but brushed off any disappointment of finishing second by taking 13th place in the Premier League.


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