TONY Mowbray believes Lukas Jutkiewicz is “the first part of a jigsaw” which will piece together Middlesbrough’s return to the Premier League, writes CRAIG HOPE.
The Boro boss insists that the 22-year-old is the first “major signing” of his Riverside tenure.
Mowbray has brought in several loan players and free transfers during his 15 months at the helm, but considers Jutkiewicz’s capture a significant one in his goal of bringing top-flight football back to Teesside.
“Lukas is the first part of a jigsaw we need to put together,” he told SportMail.
“He’s one of the first cogs in trying to restructure and rebuild.
“We’ve lost a lot of players but the ones who have come in have not been major signings, they’ve been ones who can help out and fill holes.
“Lukas is the first time we’ve spent any serious money.”
The 48-year-old added: “He’s just a good footballer and hopefully as we move on the team will be full of good footballers.
“That’s what you want, where you’ve got a team full of them and the phone never stops ringing for your players.
“That means the team is functioning well and the talent is there for everyone to see.
“It’s a case of starting that process and we’ve got to thank the chairman (Steve Gibson) for finding the money to push this deal through in difficult economic times.
“But hopefully we’ll be sat here in the future talking about another good player and then another good player coming in.
“We want selection issues all over the pitch.”
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