Woodgate ‘over the moon’ with Tavernier deal


Middlesbrough boss Jonathan Woodgate says he is "over the moon" to tie midfielder Marcus Tavernier to a new contract.

Tavernier has been a key figure for Boro this season, featuring 26 times, and the club have moved to ensure he stays at the Riverside long-term.

The 20-year-old, who left Newcastle’s academy to sign for the Teessiders in 2013, has penned a new three-and-a-half-year contract.

The Riverside Stadium outfit have been relatively quiet this month thus far, making just one permanent signing while adding Patrick Roberts and Lukas Nmecha on loan, but fans will regard Tavernier’s renewal as a major positive.

The Boro boss feels Tavernier still has plenty of room for development and has backed the midfielder to kick on over the next few years.

Woodgate told the club’s official website: “I’m over the moon Tav has signed a new contract. He was a player I was keen to get tied up as soon as we could because of what he brings to the team.

“He’s had a good run of games this season and I think people can now see what he’s about. What he’s got to do now is keep working, and he’s got to keep improving. I don’t want people standing still, I want them hungry to improve all the time.”

Tavernier has been tipped as a future England international after impressing at youth level with the under-19s and under-20s.

The deal will allow Tavernier to fully focus on his football as Boro look to pull further clear of the relegation zone and potentially make a late push for the play-offs.