It looks like it is going to be the loan window or bust for Middlesbrough if they are to replace Adama Traore and add to a side weaker than it was last season.
Tony Pulis added Jordan Hugill on a season-long loan from West Ham on deadline day but was unable to bring in a replacement for Traore who exited to Premier League Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Boro were not content with their side, however, and tried to make a double swoop for Millwall’s George Saville and Jed Wallace, but the London club held firm and rebuffed two late approaches for the pair.
It now looks set to be the loan window for the Boro boss if he is to find a replacement for the 22-year-old.
And if they are unable to replace him, will the Riverside club he as effective this season as they were last year?
Pulis admitted his current side would not get promoted before signing Hugill on loan, and you can imagine signing the forward will not alter his mind too much.
Everton’s Yannick Bolaise was another target to replace Traore, but that too failed to materialise.
If they are unable to loan in a suitable replacement, then Boro might just be battling it out in the Championship again this time next year.
Despite picking up four points from a possible six in their opening two games of the new campaign, it remains to be seen how Boro react when they hit a slump.
If they have the players at their disposal to get them out of it and help bring them out the other side, they will able to compete at the top end of the league.
Time will tell, however, but it will undoubtedly be an interesting three weeks at the Riverside until the loan window closes on August 31.