Middlesbrough's record signing Alves has quiet debut

Middlesbrough's record signing Afonso Alves had a quiet debut in their 1-0 victory over Fulham.

Boro boss Gareth Southgate is relishing working with new £12million record signing Alves who had a quiet debut after coming on as a 57th-minute substitute and playing alone up front.

Southgate added: "I knew he'd struggle physically because he's not ready, but I had to counter that with the lift he would give the crowd for the last 15 or 20 minutes.

"I think he'll probably be better playing alongside somebody and we asked a lot of him in that role today. It will do him the world of good to have dipped his toes into the water and see what the Premier League is about.

"He has had quite a mad two weeks and it has been a tiring spell. In an ideal scenario you bring a player in and allow him to train for a few weeks and get up to speed, but we didn't have the privilege of that position today."

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