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Opinion: 10 cap international should be on Middlesbrough’s radar as they look to address key area

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Middlesbrough manager Chris Wilder has already opted to make some alterations to his squad after the club missed out on a place in the play-offs last weekend.

As confirmed by Boro’s official website, Neil Taylor, Sol Bamba and Lee Peltier will be released when their contracts expire next month.

This could potentially be the start of an overhaul at the Riverside Stadium as two of Middlesbrough’s players are facing relatively uncertain futures.

According to a recent report from Football Insider, Boro are willing to listen to offers for Joe Lumley and Luke Daniels this summer.

It is understood that Wilder is keen to recruit a new goalkeeper this summer and thus is willing to part ways with this aforementioned duo if they attract interest from elsewhere.

Lumley produced three errors that directly led to goals last season in the Championship (as per SofaScore) while Daniels was limited to just 11 appearances in this division.

If Wilder is indeed on the lookout for a new shot-stopper, it could be argued that Gavin Bazunu simply has to be on his radar.

The 20-year-old emerged as a potential target for Sheffield United last month and is also believed to be attracting interest from fellow Championship side Preston North End.

Set to return to Manchester City when his loan deal at Portsmouth officially reaches a crescendo at the end of May, Bazunu has reportedly already told the club that he is hoping to play regular first-team football next season.

When you consider that Ederson has featured in all but one of City’s Premier League games in the current term, Bazunu’s hopes of overtaking the Brazilian in the pecking order at the Etihad Stadium are relatively slim.

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In order to keep Bazunu’s development on track, Pep Guardiola could opt to sanction a loan move to a Championship side and thus Boro should be keeping a close eye on the keeper.

A stand-out performer for Portsmouth in the 2021/22 campaign, Bazunu kept an impressive total of 16 clean-sheets in the third-tier.

During the 44 league games that he participated in, the keeper made 3 saves per fixture as he averaged a respectable SofaScore match rating of 6.99 at this level.

Capped on 10 occasions by the Republic of Ireland at senior level, Bazunu may now be ready to make the step up to the second-tier following his escapades in League One.

By hitting the ground running at Middlesbrough, the former Shamrock Rovers man could make the goalkeeping position his own as Wilder’s side look to launch a push for promotion.

Given that Bazunu is also attracting interest from the likes of Southampton, AFC Bournemouth and Everton, Boro may need to convince City to part ways with the keeper on a temporary basis by offering key assurances regarding game-time.


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

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Opinion: 10 cap international should be on Middlesbrough’s radar as they look to address key area

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