They were one of the founding members of the Premier League in 1992. The club's main rivals are Sunderland and Newcastle United, however the club also takes part in Yorkshire derbies with several other Yorkshire clubs; most notably Leeds United.
The club's highest league finish to date was third in the 1913–14 season and they have only spent two seasons outside of the Football League's top two divisions. The club came close to folding in 1986 after experiencing severe financial difficulties before the club was saved by a consortium led by then board member and later chairman Steve Gibson. Middlesbrough were controversially deducted three points for failing to fulfil a fixture against Blackburn Rovers during the 1996–97 Premier League season and were subsequently relegated. They were promoted the following season and spent eleven consecutive seasons in the top division before relegation. Middlesbrough won the League Cup in 2004, the club's first and only major trophy. They reached the 2006 UEFA Cup Final in May 2006 but were beaten by Spanish side Sevilla. On 24 May 2009, Middlesbrough were relegated to the Championship, failing to extend their 11-year stay in the Premier League.
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