Middlesbrough manager Tony Pulis has given chances to plenty of youth players this season, with lots of potential future first-teamers given their debuts in the domestic cup competitions.
The likes of Djed Spence, Stephen Walker and Nathan Wood all featured in the early rounds for Middlesbrough in the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup, and Lewis Wing, Marcus Tavernier and Dael Fry have all become regulars in and around the first team picture.
Boro boss Tony Pulis has spoken out about which players he expects to reach the top level, pointing towards two in particular.
“This club has a fantastic Academy and those players have to be given the chance to bloom,” says Pulis.
“Over the 18 months, I think we’ve done that.
“(Dael) Fry will play Premier League football, hopefully for Middlesbrough. Wingy (Lewis Wing) will.”
Fry has been a vital member of Boro’s starting eleven, playing 34 times throughout the season. He has operated as a centre back in a back-three and a back-four, as well as being used as a utility defender, playing at both right-back and left-back to good effect.
Lewis Wing has established himself in the first team and was even nominated for the club’s Player of the Year Award alongside Fry, although the accolade was given to goalkeeper Darren Randolph.
“There are others” said Pulis. “Djed (Spence) has been on the bench today, Connor (Malley) was close to being on the bench. There’s Woody (Nathan Wood), who I think is an outstanding young talent.”
Whether Pulis is at the helm or not next season, Boro fans will be hoping to see more young talent coming through the ranks in the near future.