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Lee Hendrie identifies key issue that Middlesbrough may need to address in January

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Sky Sports pundit Lee Hendrie has admitted that Middlesbrough may need to sign a striker in the January transfer window in order to push on in the Championship this season.

Boro opted to part ways with Britt Assombalonga earlier this year whilst Ashley Fletcher also moved on to pastures new.

Whilst Warnock was able to bolster his attacking options in the summer window by swooping for Uche Ikpeazu and Andraz Sporar, Boro have been relatively toothless in-front of goal at times this season.

Ikpeazu has only managed to find the back of the net on two occasions for his new side whilst Sporar has failed to score in his last four league appearances.

Having recently suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Hull City, it will be intriguing to see whether Middlesbrough are able to bounce back by delivering an impressive attacking display against Peterborough United on October 16th.

Making reference to Middlesbrough, Hendrie has suggested that they may need to add to their options up-front if they continue to struggle for consistency in the Championship.

Speaking on the latest episode of the Sky Sports EFL Podcast about Boro, the former Aston Villa midfielder said: “They haven’t really had a prolific goalscorer when you look at it.

“Assombalonga when he first came in that was when he had his great season where he scored all of them goals and then all of a sudden, that’s an area that really stands out for me for Boro.

“For all of the great play that they have, I felt that Bola does really well, Tavernier on that right-hand side, they really go and get forward and bringing in a good addition in Crooks, I thought that he would add goals.

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“But I just look at the front-line again and this is my problem and it is obviously evident that this is why they are not winning games and watching the game at the weekend they had some very good chances to be clear and out of the way of Hull.

“I can see the frustration from Warnock and I think he’s tried to mix it up more in that forward area with obviously Assombalonga not being there but I just feel that that’s an area that’s a stand-out position for me where I think that if they can get someone in [in January] who can be a bit more prolific they can certainly start moving up the table.”

The Verdict

It is hard to disagree with Hendrie’s comments as Middlesbrough have only managed to find the back of the net on 11 occasions this season.

Whilst it would be naïve to write off the likes of Sporar and Ikpeazu at this stage of the season, Boro will need this particular duo to step up to the mark in the coming months if they are to achieve a relative amount of success in the Championship.

Providing that Middlesbrough continue to falter in-front of goal, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if Warnock tries to bolster his squad in January.

By drafting in an individual who is capable of delivering the goods on a consistent basis at this level, Boro could potentially emerge as contenders for a top-six finish next year.


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

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Lee Hendrie identifies key issue that Middlesbrough may need to address in January

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