Boro captain delighted with Carling Cup draw

Mark Roberts looking forward to pitting his wits against former Premiership side

BORO captain Mark Roberts said he is looking forward to pitting his wits against ‘some real quality players’ after Boro were drawn at home to former Premier League side Portsmouth in the first round of the Carling Cup.

Boro were handed a home tie against probably the biggest team in the first round of the competition when the draw was made on Wednesday morning and Roberts said he can’t wait to take on last year’s FA Cup finalists.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better draw,” Roberts told The Comet.

“To play a team in that was in the Premier League last year in the first round show just want promotion from the Conference can do for the club and shows what doors can be opened.

“We’ve been looking forward to the draw and I remember when I was at Accrington and we were drawn against Leicester City and that was a great feeling and this is the same.

“Portsmouth have some really good, real quality players and they’re going to try to hold on to them this summer.

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“We’re guaranteed a full house with this draw and I’m really looking forward to the match.”

Boro are scheduled to play Pompey in the week commencing August 9, but before the Carling Cup comes to town the club must try to secure a new sponsor after they were dealt a financial blow this week when Megaman told the club they will no longer be able to continue their main sponsorship of the club.

The company’s three year deal ended on May 31 and Boro were hopeful that Megaman would renew their deal with the club for another period now that Boro are in the Football League but the energy saving lamp specialists decided that the current economic situation prevented them from doing so.

The club’s commercial manager Clive Abrey said: “All good things come to an end and that’s the case with our shirt sponsorship agreement.

“Megaman has been a great sponsor to work with over the last three years and although they will continue to be involved with club in other capacities they have decided to move aside and allow another company to put their name on our playing kit for the forthcoming season and beyond.

“We didn’t expect this to be honest and we are now anxiously seeking a new main sponsor for next season. If any company is interested in registering an interest for this prestigious role, we would be keen to talk to them.”

Following Megaman’s decision Boro’s shirt deal for the 2010-11 season has been put on hold.

The club is now eagerly searching for a new sponsor and may have to start life in the Football League with both a new home and away kit.

Megaman’s managing director John Murphy said: “Working with Boro during the past three years has been both valuable and enjoyable, and we have shared some great times. But like all well-run companies, we regularly review what we need to do and how best to allocate our promotional budgets.

“For the coming year we are planning some radical changes to our marketing strategies, and will be getting involved in some exciting new approaches.

“Unfortunately, a continuation of the old sponsorship deal doesn’t fit into those plans. However, our relationship with the club continues to be extremely cordial and we will hopefully be able to help them out occasionally as and when suitable opportunities occur.”

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