After what must have felt like a lifetime of waiting even though it was only around a month, Middlesbrough fans have finally been able to welcome the man they hope will provide the assists and some goals to get them back to the Premier League.
Neil Warnock has been shrewd in the transfer market up until now, but Boro have splashed some cash on promising Argentinian midfielder Martin Payero from Banfield, an outfit from the top flight of his native country.
After playing for his nation at the Olympic Games, Payero has arrived on Teesside to pen a three-year contract with Boro and he will fill the void left in midfield by both George Saville and Lewis Wing this summer.
According to TEAMtalk, Boro have spent the best part of £5 million on the 22-year-old, which is a major investment but not quite on the levels of when they spent £15 million on Britt Assombalonga in 2017 when they had just been relegated from the Premier League.
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He couldn’t help fire Boro back into the top flight of English football but there’s hope that Payero can be the catalyst for success, and the addition has pleased manager Neil Warnock very much.
“Martin will be a great addition to the squad,” Warnock said, per the club’s official website.
“I think he will be an exciting signing, we’re delighted to get everything done, and we’re looking forward to working with him.
“I know Martin is looking forward to it, and he can’t wait to play in front of our fans.”
Most of Middlesbrough’s signings this summer have been typical Warnock ones – the likes of Matt Crooks and Uche Ikpeazu provide a physical presence but this signing of Payero is different.
The Argentinian is a playmaker as evidenced by his assist stats in last season’s Copa Diego Maradona for Banfield and he will arrive at Boro match-fit having played at the Olympic Games for his country.
It may be too much to expect him to be thrown into the team for Sunday’s clash with Middlesbrough considering he will need to settle in the country and learn the Warnock way, but when Payero is ready to fully fire we could see one of the Championship’s new big stars.