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Chris Wilder likens Middlesbrough transfer situation to Everton and West Ham

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Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder has likened the Teessiders’ unsuccessful search for new forwards to the situation that Premier League duo Everton and West Ham United have faced this summer. 

The Boro boss has made it no secret that he is looking to add more forward firepower this summer and has revealed that the Championship club have made offers for three top flight strikers but for the time being they’re yet to strengthen in that area.

Speaking to BBC Radio Tees, Wilder suggested that issues in landing new forwards are not exclusive to the Riverside outfit and namedropped Everton and the Hammers as two other clubs experiencing them.

He said: “If you look at probably every club outside of the top four or five in the Premier League, everybody is after centre-forwards and we’re no different. Everton need a centre-forward. West Ham are struggling to get a centre-forward over the line. That’s just the market we’re in at the minute.

“We’re looking abroad, we’re looking closer to home. We’re looking at fees, we’re looking at frees and we’re looking at loans. We’re looking at who can do a job for us. It is a difficult market but I’m sure when the window closes we’ll have some good players in that position. Steve understands that, and we’ve had many a meeting regarding that.

“Centre-forwards are the players that take you to the next level, and without being too critical of the boys last year, I think if we’d have had a 15-20 goal striker last year we’d have got into the play-offs and maybe even a little bit higher. Steve has always backed managers and he understands that’s such an important part of any team.”

With Andraz Sporar, Flo Balogun, and Aaron Connolly all departing the club, Wilder is left with Duncan Watmore and Josh Coburn as his only forward options.

A move for Newcastle United’s Dwight Gayle is reported to have stalled but it is believed that Boro are closing in on the signing of Brentford’s Marcus Forss.

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The Verdict

Wilder is right to highlight the issues that many clubs are facing in their search for new strikers as a reminder that Boro supporters need to keep the faith.

Prolific forwards are always hot property but it seems this summer more than most there are lots of teams looking for them but unable to get a deal done.

It seems Boro are leaving no stone unturned as they look to strengthen in the final third, which could well be the final piece of the puzzle as they look to push for promotion this season.

Their lack of a regular goalscorer was costly in 2021/22 and how effectively they can solve the problem could be the difference between a successful campaign and a disappointing one.


London-based sports journalist at Snack Media EFL accredited, graduate of New Associates and the University of Brighton

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Chris Wilder likens Middlesbrough transfer situation to Everton and West Ham

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