This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Middlesbrough added Onel Hernandez on loan from Norwich City in the final knockings of the transfer window and the Cuban will keen to hit the ground running at the Riverside Stadium.
The 28-year-old is a classic Neil Warnock signing, he arrives on Teesside with a point to prove having struggled for regular game time with the Canaries and the 72-year-old will be confident of getting the best out of him. Eight goals and 12 assists in 73 outings in the Championship is a respectable record considering the amount of substitute appearances he has had.
In competition with the likes of Isaiah Jones, Marcus Browne and Duncan Watmore for a spot on the flank, we gathered the thoughts of a selection of FLW writers on whether they believe Onel Hernandez will be a regular for Middlesbrough this season…
Onel Hernandez is a player that has to be firmly in Neil Warnock’s plans at Middlesbrough now following his arrival on loan from Norwich City.
The attacker brings to the table qualities that Boro do not have in their other attacking options and he is a direct player that is not afraid to drive at defences and make things happen in possession.
The 28-year-old showed with his excellent form for Norwich in the 2018/19 season, when he managed to score eight goals and provide nine assists in the Championship, that he can be a major force in the final third at this level when he is at his best.
Hernandez fell down the pecking order under Daniel Farke in the last two years or so a Norwich, but a move to Middlesbrough could well be the answer to unlocking his best form once again.
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If Boro get the best out of Hernandez he will be an excellent addition to the squad and the best way to do that is to provide him with regular chances to start.
It’s ultimately going to be down to the player.
Warnock has a few options out wide, so it’s going to come down to each individual taking their chance and making the position their own moving forward, including Hernandez.
He has shown with Norwich that he can be a very good player at this level, and his pace and direct style makes him ideally suited to what Warnock wants from his wide men. With the fixtures coming thick and fast over the next month, opportunities will present themselves to Hernandez and all the attackers in Boro’s squad, so it’s on them to deliver.
I don’t think the former Canaries man will manage to fully nail down a starting XI place week in, week out, but he certainly has the quality to make a big impact on the team this season.
It would seem to make sense for Middlesbrough to use Hernandez regularly during his time at The Riverside Stadium.
Hernandez is a high quality player who has shown in the past with Norwich that he can make a significant impact in the Championship, and he knows all about what it takes to win promotion from this division, having done so with the Canaries twice now during his career.
With that in mind, you do feel as though Hernandez is a player whose talent Neil Warnock will surely be keen to exploit, meaning you would expect him to get a considerable amount of game time while he is at Boro.
Indeed, you imagine Hernandez himself will have expected a guarantee of first-team opportunities when he agreed to make the move from the Premier League to the Championship, meaning it would feel like something of a surprise if he does not feature consistently while he is in the North-East.