AS Middlesbrough prepare to play their final home game of the season at the Riverside Stadium this afternoon, Tony Pulis has described how much he has liked working in the Championship again and has not ruled out staying on as manager.

The Boro boss still hopes to steer the club back to the Premier League via the play-offs next month and just to stand a chance of that happening he knows back-to-back wins over Reading and Rotherham must be delivered.

Only when Middlesbrough’s fate for next season has been determined will Pulis then sit down with chairman Steve Gibson to discuss his contract situation, given there is the option of an extension at the end of his current deal which expires on June 30.

Since leading Stoke City to the top-flight in 2007, this has been Pulis’ first full campaign back in the second tier and it has given him a greater insight into how things have changed financially at that level.

Pulis said: “I need to sit down with Steve and go through everything. It’s been a great experience for me, the 18 months, because I’d been out of it for ten years.

“So to see it all working in action again and to work at a club with great expectations as well, to work at a club that had spent £55m, it’s been a real eye opener for me in lots of respects, being just a working class chap who believes in certain principles and values. But I’ll talk to Steve about it.”

After leaving Stoke in 2013 he then had spells in the Premier League with Crystal Palace and West Brom, so dropping back to the Championship has been a lot different to the challenges he faced at the top level. He was giving little away in terms of his contract situation.

He said: “It’s been refreshing to work with players outside the Premier League and surprising in some ways - but I’ll let you know about that later. I’ve been in the game a long time and I’ve had contracts that have lasted a year and I’ve been there for ten years with a rolling contract that’s just rolled and rolled and rolled to a point where me and Peter Coates (Stoke chairman) had an agreement.

“Contracts mean nothing, it’s the person you’re working with and whether you get what you want from him and whether he gets what he wants from you. People looking at the club I think will recognise it’s been a season of change in lots of respects.”

Middlesbrough’s promotion bid, which has faltered significantly in recent months, could have a huge bearing on Pulis’ future.

A failure to achieve the goal set out at the start of the season would mean less money being around to invest in the Middlesbrough squad over the summer to assist another promotion push. Pulis does not think that has to be the be-all and end-all, suggesting Middlesbrough can still make progress if things are done correctly behind-the-scenes which is what he has been recommending.

“There’s more than one way to skin a cat and this club has to understand and recognise there are different ways of doing stuff,” said Pulis. “But you have to be patient if you’re going to do it that way. We’re still on the backfoot and still catering for a lot of players who came in.

“Everyone thought by spending, similar to what Stoke have done, Nottingham Forest and other clubs, they’ve spent an absolute fortune thinking they will buy their way through it. For me that’s not the way to do it.”

Middlesbrough have certainly had to be frugal in the past. Tony Mowbray had to cut costs during his time in charge and that ultimately laid the foundations for Aitor Karanka to slot in and turn things around.

“Gordon Strachan has been here and had a crack at it and spent a lot of money. Other people have and other people,” said Pulis. “There has to be some serious talking and planning. It’s a smashing club, it’s a real good club. But everyone around the club, and you won’t get everyone because that’s the way it is today, they have to realise there’s a different way of doing things.

“Clubs are going to get promoted and struggle in the Premier League, unless it’s done properly. So you’re chasing to get there, you get there, you get relegated, you’ve got this massive bill, then you chase it again because you’ve got parachute money then you get deeper and deeper in trouble. You look at how many clubs have done that in the last ten years, it’s ridiculous.

“You’ve got to have strength of character and understanding to know where the club is going. And you’ve got to be honest and open and say this is how we’re doing it. But you’ll be stronger at the end of it and break the mould of ‘I want it, why can’t I have it? Why can’t it be done?’”