Exclusive – Middlesbrough are ready to cash in on prized asset Dael Fry this summer, but the Championship strugglers want around £20m for their academy graduate.
Boro have struggled under the guidance of head coach Jonathan Woodgate this season, flirting dangerously with the relegation zone up until the halting of play in March – caused by the global coronavirus outbreak.
But young defender Fry has continued to impress Premier League onlookers – despite the Teesiders’ wretched campaign – and a source has told 90min that Boro are willing to part company for the right amount of money.
Newcastle United have also shown an interest, but that was registered before the proposed takeover bid from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, and the Magpies may look elsewhere if they gain a considerable cash injection.
Fry has been a key figure for Middlesbrough since making his debut in 2014, but the club are aware that their dwindling status in the Championship may make it difficult to keep hold of him. That said, Boro don’t intend to budge from their asking price of £20m.
That figure would usually not phase Premier League suitors, but clubs may not be as willing to part company with such a figure because of the coronavirus’ impact on club finances. A lack of matchday revenue, as well as in-store merchandise sales, are just two examples of income sources that have been sorely lacking since March.
As for Fry, he’s not only risen through the ranks at Middlesbrough, he’s also been recognised by England at a number of youth levels. Starting out for the Under-17s, he’s progressed through to the Under-21s setup and is approaching 100 league appearances for his hometown club.
His continued improvement may help Middlesbrough stave off relegation, and that may prove to be his final act for the club if a Premier League side matches his valuation.