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2 Middlesbrough selection dilemmas Chris Wilder is facing ahead of club’s clash with Cardiff

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Middlesbrough will be aiming to boost their hopes of challenging Sheffield United for a play-off spot this evening when they host Cardiff City at the Riverside Stadium.

Boro lost ground on the Blades in the Championship at the weekend as they were forced to settle for a point in their clash with Swansea City.

Paul Heckingbottom’s side meanwhile managed to defeat Cardiff at Bramall Lane as they extended the gap between them and Boro to five points.

In order to have any chance of sealing a top-six finish next month, Boro simply have to beat the Bluebirds in front of their own supporters tonight.

Having witnessed his side’s performance against the Jacks, it will be interesting to see whether Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder opts to make any changes to his team for their meeting with Cardiff.

Here, we have decided to take a look at two Boro selection dilemmas Wilder is facing ahead of this particular clash…

Could Martin Payero be handed the opportunity to impress in this particular fixture?

When you consider that Matt Crooks will miss this fixture due to suspension and Marcus Tavernier is facing a race to be fully fit for the clash, Wilder may opt to hand Martin Payero the chance to impress in the heart of midfield.

After being forced to watch on from the sidelines for 13 games due to an ankle injury, the Argentine made his return to action in Saturday’s showdown with Swansea as a substitute.

In the 13 appearances that he has made in the Championship this season, Payero has only managed to show glimpses of his ability as he has produced two direct goal contributions at this level.

Providing that he does get the nod to feature this evening, Payero could boost his chances of participating in the club’s upcoming clashes with Stoke City and Preston North End if he produces an eye-catching display against the Bluebirds.

Will Wilder be willing to take a risk on Dael Fry?

Another player who is set to be assessed ahead of this fixture is Dael Fry who has missed Middlesbrough’s last three league games.

Only die-hard Middlesbrough supporters will get at least 20/25 on this higher or lower quiz

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Is the capacity of the Riverside Stadium higher or lower than 36,000

When you consider that Fry has managed to average a respectable WhoScored match rating of 6.81 in the Championship this season, Wilder will be keen to call upon his services tonight.

However, unless the defender has made progress in terms of his recovery from a calf injury this week, the Boro boss ought to resist taking a risk on him.

Sol Bamba has featured alongside Paddy McNair and Anfernee Dijksteel in the heart of defence in Fry’s absence and could be in line to make another appearance for Boro today.

Having played 209 games at this level during his career, Bamba will unquestionably be confident in his ability to deliver the goods against his former side.


Freelance writer for Football League World. Previously worked for 90min & GiveMeSport.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: 2 Middlesbrough selection dilemmas Chris Wilder is facing ahead of club’s clash with Cardiff

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