Founded in 1876, Middlesbrough Football Club remained an amateur side until 1889, when they joined the Football League. After three years, they were promoted to the First Division, where they stayed for over 20 years. In 1913-14 the club recorded its highest ever league finish of 3rd. The team was also founding member of the Premier League in 1992.
During the 1980s, the club came close to liquidation, with the club's demise having been officially announced by several media sources. However, Middlesbrough was saved by a consortium brought together by Steve Gibson and completed their Football League registration for the 1986–87 season with just ten minutes to spare. During the 1990s, Bryan Robson took over as the club's manager and oversaw a period in the club's history which saw several high-profile foreign players join the club for big money. However, after two seasons, the club were relegated from the top flight once again.
Throughout the Premier League years, Middlesbrough developed a reputation as cup contenders, reaching the finals of both the FA Cup and League Cup in 1997. Moving into the 21st century, under the management of Steve McClaren, the club scaled to new heights, winning the League Cup in 2004 by beating Bolton Wanderers Football Club 2-1 and reaching the UEFA Cup final in 2006.
Juninho Paulista is considered one of the club's greatest ever players, enjoying three seperate spells at the club during the 1990s and 2000s. Club legends include Tony Mowbray, Gareth Southgate and Brian Clough. Middlesbrough's greatest ever goalscorer is George Camsell, who scored 345 goals for the team. Other high profile former players include such names as Paul Gascoigne, Paul Merson, Mark Viduka and Fabrizio Ravanelli.
Since 1995, Middlesbrough have played at the Riverside Stadium, having previously occupied Ayresome Park for almost 100 years. An all-seater stadium, the Riverside has a capacity of 34,988 and the club has planning permission to expand that to 42,000 in the future.