Championship

Middlesbrough must seek to land Jason Puncheon to further enhance promotion hopes

Middlesbrough must seek to land Jason Puncheon to further enhance promotion hopes

According to a recent report from The Daily Star, Middlesbrough are close to sealing a double deal for Muhamed Besic and Yannick Bolasie. The duo currently play their football at Premier League side Everton but neither have featured in Marco Silva’s matchday squads for their opening two league matches against Wolves and Southampton, thus plunging their futures at Goodison Park into doubt with less than two weeks left of both the European and indeed the loan window.  

And it appears that Tony Pulis’ Boro are on the verge of luring both to the Riverside Stadium, and with that double deal close to completion, the Teessiders should now add £4.5 million-rated Premier League star Jason Puncheon (as per Transfermarkt) to further enhance their promotion hopes.

The Breakdown

Ultimately, with deals for messrs Besic and Bolasie close to completion, the North East outfit look set to sign two hugely talented players that, on their day, can certainly produce the goods in the Premier League let alone the Championship, not least DR Congo international Bolasie who earned a move to Everton as a result of starring for Crystal Palace in the top-flight.

And with Besic enjoying a fine stint on loan at the Teessiders in the second half of last season, appearing 17 times for Pulis’ side to help them reach the Championship play-offs, if not a return to the Premier League, the Boro boss will know that the 25-year-old adds a great deal of quality and strength to his midfield ranks.

Thus, the Everton pair will go some way to enhancing Middlesbrough’s promotion hopes for the remainder of the season, and adding Crystal Palace’s Puncheon, another player they have been linked with recently, would only seek to further enhance those credentials.

The 32-year-old has been at Selhurst Park since 2014 after a four-year stint at Southampton, and in that time he has appeared 161 times for the Eagles, netting 16 goals and laying on 22 assists.

Yet injuries restricted the winger to just ten Premier League appearances last term, and with Palace strengthening over the summer in the form of Max Meyer, and finishing the season strongly without the Englishman’s influence, it remains to be seen whether he features in Roy Hodgson’s plans.

Yet one mustn’t forget that, prior to injury, Puncheon was a regular in the Palace side such was what he gave to the London club going forward, be it out wide getting crosses into the box, or indeed playing in a more advanced role down the middle.

And his experience and ability to play in more than one position is sure to be of interest to Boro chief Pulis, who of course worked with the 32-year-old during his time in charge of the Eagles between 2013 and 2014, which remains Puncheon’s best season in front of goal in a Palace shirt.

And such is the long, hard slog that is a Championship campaign, options in many areas of the pitch and indeed experienced players will certainly help Boro in their quest to return to the top-flight.

Thus, with a deal for messrs Besic and Bolasie reportedly close, adding Puncheon would go some way to further enhancing their promotion credentials.

Boro fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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