Alves expected to impress

05 August 2008 09:39
Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate is confident that striker Afonso Alves will be a big success for his side in the coming campaign. The 27-year-old scored six goals in 14 appearances last term following his big-money arrival from Heerenveen in January and Southgate expects the Brazilian to continue that sort of strike-rate. He told the Northern Echo: "It's impossible to put a 20- goals prediction on any player, but what we know is that if we give him a couple of chances he will score goals. "I'm confident he will score but it's difficult to predict how many. "He has shown in pre-season and in other games last season, that not only can he score, he can score two or three in a game. That's an asset any team needs. "He's got an instinct and a composure in front of goal. He likes the challenge of the Premier League and of coming up against defenders, so I think the league games will bring even more out of him. "Afonso's attitude to pre-season has been excellent. He was quite cool about the goals he scored at Hibs, but I'm sure he will be quite chuffed to get a couple before the start of the season."

Source: ESA