MIDDLESBROUGH’S pursuit of non-league talent has continued with the club offering a two-week trial to Nigerian winger Samuel Folarin.

Folarin has left his current employers, Isthmian South Central League side Tooting and Mitcham United, for a two-week trial at Boro’s Rockliffe Park training ground.

The left winger will train with the Teessiders’ Under-23s side as he attempts to secure a permanent contract with the club.

He has previously had a trial with League One side Charlton Athletic, and is regarded as one of the brightest talents in the non-league game after stepping up to Tooting and Mitcham’s senior team this season.

Boro have increased their scouting of the non-league scene in recent seasons, with their most notable success coming courtesy of Lewis Wing, who was plucked from Northern League side Shildon United to become one of the club’s most influential first-team performers this season.

Boro’s senior side return to action against Stoke City on Friday afternoon, with Potters boss Nathan Jones anticipating a tough encounter against his opposite number, Tony Pulis.

Pulis led Stoke for ten seasons in two separate spells at the Bet365 Stadium, and boasts an impressive record against his former employers. The Boro boss is unbeaten in his last 14 matches against Stoke, with his most recent defeat against the Potters having come in November 1992 when his Bournemouth side lost to a Stoke team led by Lou Macari.

“Tony did fantastic work for this club,” said Jones. “I’d expect he’ll get well mentioned (by the Stoke fans) because he did a fantastic job.

“It will be a difficult game. Any time you face a Tony Pulis team, it’s a difficult game. If there’s any more motivation (on Pulis’ part), then it will be even more difficult for us.”

Having started the season as the favourites for the Championship title, Stoke have suffered an extremely disappointing campaign.

They head to Teesside sitting in 16th position, with Jones having been unable to turn things around since replacing Gary Rowett in January.

“We need time to change the environment and change the direction,” said Jones. “At the minute, we’re not used to winning games.”