Middlesbrough manager Neil Warnock has claimed that his side are ‘a bit light of options at the back’ after Anfernee Dijksteel’s recent injury.

Middlesbrough already have Paddy McNair and Marc Bola out injured, with the duo both expected to miss the trip to Reading this weekend. Another who could sit out the upcoming game against the Royals in Anfernee Dijksteel.

The Dutch right-back limped off early in the second half in their recent defeat to Blackpool with Warnock admitting the extent of the injury is yet to be determined.

When asked how long he would be out for, Warnock didn’t have a specific timescale. But he revealed that it looks to be a hamstring injury.

“I don’t know. They said it was hamstring, but I don’t know how serious” the Boro boss said.

“And then with McNair and Bola too, we’re a bit light of options at the back aren’t we?”

At present, Middlesbrough have defenders Dael Fry, Grant Hall, Sol Bamba, and Lee Peltier fit. Peltier will likely deputise at right-back, whilst wingers Isaiah Jones or Marcus Tavernier will have to become a makeshift left-back and fill in if Dijksteel misses out.

Thoughts

Middlesbrough allowed left-back Marvin Johnson to leave on a free, and fellow full-backs Hayden Coulson, Jack Robinson and Djed Spence to depart on loan. This now looks to be an error on the boards’ part, as injuries have taken their toll again, just as they did last season at the Riverside.

If they had even one of those four at their disposal it would plug a gap, even temporarily, whilst they await the returns of their first-team players.

Instead they will need to play particular players out of position, when they would be better used further forwards. Jones and Tavernier, case in point.