Fry is good enough to learn from his mis­takes

Sunday Sun - - Football -

DAEL Fry’s costly clanger against Nor­wich City is likely to do the young de­fender more good than harm. For starters, he now knows that boot­ing the ball into Row Z is the best op­tion in a tight sit­u­a­tion. Cer­tainly we should not be sur­prised to see Fry make such a mis­take. He’s still at the bot­tom end of a long learn­ing curve.

And the ex­perts reckon that cen­tre-backs don’t reach ma­tu­rity un­til they are in their late 20s.

Garry Monk should still be ap­plauded for giving Fry a run in the side when he had more ex­pe­ri­enced op­tions.

The 20-year-old Mid­dles­brough­born lad has gained ter­rific con­fi­dence from this spell which will only ben­e­fit his fu­ture ca­reer.

Boro have been well aware of Fry’s po­ten­tial for a long time. He’s got all the at­tributes to be a top player.

In fact it would be great to think that he could fol­low in the foot­steps of fel­low Teessider Ben Gib­son.

How­ever no­body is guar­an­teed a first-team place, es­pe­cially at a young age, so Fry must con­tinue to work hard at im­prov­ing ev­ery as­pect of his game.

There is hot com­pe­ti­tion for cen­tre-back places.

It took a long time for the £3m sign­ing of Ryan Shot­ton to be­come a re­al­ity, but the for­mer Birm­ing­ham City man is an­other who can com­fort­ably do a job for Boro at this level.

Shot­ton is not just a cen­tre-back. He has played at right-back and right-wing in the past, and also cen­tre-for­ward, where his 6ft 3in height can be used to good ef­fect.

How­ever Ryan has been brought in pri­mar­ily as a cen­tral de­fender, which in it­self should be enough threat to keep Fry on his toes.

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