Winger Stewart Downing says the Middlesbrough squad are learning quickly just how tough the Premier League is.

Downing wary of ruthless Prem

Downing wary of ruthless Prem

Boro have made a solid start to life back in the top flight and sit 16th in the table with six points from their first seven games.

Downing, an experienced Premier League player from his time with Aston Villa, Liverpool and West Ham, says adapting to the difficulty and intensive nature of the league can take time.

The 32-year-old has warned his team-mates that clubs punish mistakes in the top flight much more and it's a ruthless league.

"Mistakes are a big thing because if you make them in the Premier League, you get punished," he said in the Gazette.

"You might get away with one or two errors in the Championship, but you'll get punished at this level. It's just the little fine margins, but that's what the lads will learn along the way.

"It'll get easier with the more games they play, and they'll get better."