Middlesbrough play Rochdale at Spotland this evening, and Boro boss Tony Pulis is certainly experimenting with personnel.

Middlesbrough’s set-up has been relatively similar throughout pre-season so far, in terms of team selection and formation. However, Pulis has selected a young team for tonight’s game and will be hoping for some youngsters to make their mark.

The likes of Harry Chapman, Nathan Wood and Lewis Wing have all impressed so far, with all three playing a part in previous pre-season games against Accrington Stanley and SV Sandhausen.

Dael Fry maintains his spot at centre-back alongside Wood, and both could feature next season in the first-team. Ben Gibson could be on his way out of the club, and with Dani Ayala still making his way back to full fitness, Fry and Wood could deputise.

Defender Enes Mahmutovic is starting the game at right back, and if he performs well, he could be a vital back up to first choice full back Ryan Shotton. With the recent departure of Fabio da Silva, Middlesbrough are said to be in the market for a back up, but the 21-year old will be hoping to make an impression.

Equally, the substitute bench sees former-Blackpool loanee Callum Cooke, as well as Alex Pattison who spent last season on loan at National League North side York City. Both are attacking midfielders and may get some minutes on the pitch at Spotland this evening.

Another surprise inclusion is the reintroduction of Martin Braithwaite. The striker has just returned to full training with Middlesbrough following his World Cup campaign with Denmark, where they reached the round of 16.

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Lifelong Boro fan - from the highs of watching Juninho and the Carling Cup victory, to the lows of Gordon Strachan and Lee Dong Gook

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