Gareth Southgate believes homegrown talent will be a key factor behind Middlesbrough's Premier League return.
Boro find themselves outside England's top flight for the first time in 12 years this season following relegation last time around.
Southgate acknowledges it will not be easy for the North East side to bounce back at the first attempt and that the right mentality will be required to achieve the feat.
The club's long-serving manager wants players with grit and determination such as Matthew Bates, who recently committed his future to the club, and David Wheater to spearhead the club's fight back to the Premier League.
Whether Boro will be able to hang onto the services of talented defender Wheater with Aston Villa reportedly mulling over a big-money offer remains to be seen.
"Throughout the club, people have to realise that we have got a huge challenge on our hands if we want to win promotion this season," stated Southgate.
"It's not going to be a case of just turning up and getting straight back up.
"It's going to be a scrap and we need people with a winning mentality who will embrace that challenge. I know Matthew has that mentality.
"We want the heartbeat of the club to be local boys and we feel that the likes of Matthew and David Wheater can be the backbone of the side, along with others like Brad Jones, who also came through the club's Academy.
"We have got other local lads too, of course, who will play a big part, though they might have to be patient in their development."