Matt Crooks reveals what Dan Barlaser can offer to Middlesbrough after Rotherham switch

Matt Crooks reveals what Dan Barlaser can offer to Middlesbrough after Rotherham switch

Middlesbrough midfielder Matt Crooks was delighted the club completed the signing of his former Rotherham United team-mate Dan Barlaser in January.

Barlaser joined Riverside Stadium on a three-and-a-half-year deal last month after an impressive season with the Millers, where he scored two goals and provided seven assists in 28 league games.

The midfielder returns to his native North East after a successful spell at New York Stadium, having first been loaned out by Newcastle United in July 2019 before making a permanent move the following October.

He helped the Millers to two promotions from League One during his time at South Yorkshire and spent the first two years of his tenure at the club playing with Crooks, who departed for Riverside Stadium last summer.

Now the pair will be reunited on Teesside and Crooks says he will help Barlaser settle in while also providing a glimpse of what he will bring to Michael Carrick’s side.

“It always makes it easier when you have someone you know in the dressing room, so I’m happy to help Dan settle in. I know when I first came it was Wingy (Lewis Wing) for me and it makes it easier, especially on that first day, to just settle in.” Crooks told Teesside Live.

“Of course I had a fight with some guys the last time I played Boro before I joined, so I had to apologize a bit on my first day! Even then gaffer Neil Warnock, I yelled at him at halftime! But yeah, having Wingy with me helped me initially.

“Dan’s a great boy and a really good player too, so he’ll blend in seamlessly with all the boys. I’m sure when he gets his time on the pitch he will show what he can do.

“He’s a very good player. He’s very technical and has a wide range of passes. He can also take a brilliant set piece. He’s just a very good player with a good eye for passing. So I am sure that he will help us to go in the right direction.”

Think you’re a die-hard Middlesbrough fan? Try to score 20/20 on this quiz all about the club

The judgment

Barlaser is an excellent signing for Middlesbrough.

He has proven to be more than a capable championship-level performer for the Millers this season, and as Crooks points out, he has a number of qualities that will make him a great asset to Boro.

Barlaser is likely to be seen as a long-term replacement for Jonny Howson and could form an exciting partnership with Hayden Hackney while no doubt improving under the tutelage of Carrick, a midfielder who has spent much of his career at the top level during his playing days.

Crooks’ comments are a clear endorsement of Barlaser’s skills and having a familiar face around will be invaluable as he adjusts to life in his new surroundings.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *