JONATHAN WOODGATE is adamant he does not want to lose Dael Fry ahead of tomorrow’s 5pm transfer deadline as he is convinced the 21-year-old centre-half will go on to be a senior England international.

Having completed the £2m signing of right-back Anfernee Dijksteel earlier today, Woodgate is hoping to bring in one more player before the transfer window swings shut. The Middlesbrough head coach is understood to be pursuing an additional attacking midfielder, although he insists he will not be panicked into a last-minute deal if his current targets fall through.

He will also spend transfer-deadline day monitoring any outside interest in his own players, with Burnley pondering a renewed approach for Fry. The Clarets had an £8m bid rejected on Monday night, and could opt to make an improved offer if the in-demand James Tarkowski leaves Turf Moor.

Middlesbrough sold Ben Gibson to Burnley for £15m last summer, but even if Sean Dyche’s side were to return with a similar bid for Fry, Woodgate would be urging the rest of Boro’s recruitment team to turn down the offer.

Last week, Adam Webster swapped Bristol City for Brighton for an initial fee of £20m that could rise as high as £25m, and Woodgate feels Fry is a superior talent to Amex-bound 24-year-old.

As a former international centre-half himself, the Boro boss knows a talented defensive prospect when he sees one, and having worked with Fry at academy and senior level, he is confident the youngster has what it takes to get to the very highest level.

“What was the (Burnley) bid (for Fry)? £8m or something like that? What did Webster just go for at Bristol City? I think that answers the question,” said Woodgate, when asked whether he thought Fry could leave in the final few hours of the transfer window.

“Dael Fry is a special player for me – I’d say he’s the most valuable player at the football club, worth the most money. In the future, I see him being a full England international. I don’t want Dael Fry to leave the football club, it’s as simple as that. It’s a really simple message.”

As well as holding on to Fry, Woodgate is also determined to keep Marcus Tavernier at Rockliffe Park despite ongoing interest from Barnsley.

The Tykes have made a number of inquiries about Tavernier in the last week, but even though the youngster was an unused substitute in last Friday’s season-opening draw at Luton Town, Woodgate is adamant he is not for sale. Similarly, the Boro boss will be rejecting any attempts to sign Tavernier on loan tomorrow.

“He’s someone I want to keep,” he said. “I really like Tav. He’s got that energy I like, and he can play in a number of different positions. I love him in training, I love his endeavour and his enthusiasm. He rattles into tackles, he’s up and down, and he scores goals.

“He just needs to add a bit of consistency to his game at times, but he’s learning and he wants to improve. He’s someone I want to keep here – Tav will play games for me.”

Whether Woodgate is able to add another player remains to be seen, but chief executive Neil Bausor and head of recruitment Adrian Bevington have spent the last couple of days sounding out potential options.

Boro have signed Tomas Mejias, Marcus Browne, Marc Bola and Dijksteel since confirming Woodgate’s appointment, but are still somewhat stretched in attack following the departure of Jordan Hugill and Stewart Downing.

“I’m not going to say what position, but we’re trying hard to get one in,” said Woodgate. “If it’s the right one, we’ll do it. If it’s not, we won’t. It’s really as simple as that. Myself, Neil and Adrian know what we want, and if it’s not right, we won’t do it.

“We haven’t got all this money these days, so it’s a bit different to a lot of managers who have been at this football club. But I’m still being backed. Neil, Adrian and the chairman are still backing me.

“They know what I want. Hopefully we can add one more, but all the recruitment lads are working so hard to get the right player in. But I’m not just going to get anyone in to fill a space. If that player is not right, I’m not going to put the chairman’s money in jeopardy.”

Dijksteel’s arrival increases Boro’s options at right-back, with Jonny Howson having played on the right of the back four in last Friday’s draw at Kenilworth Road.

The 22-year-old Dutchman has signed a three-year deal, having been an integral part of the Charlton side that won promotion from League One last season.

“He’s a good defender, and he’s got real energy,” said Woodgate. “You’ll see him going backwards and forwards when he plays. He needs to brush up on certain parts of his game, but he was the signing I wanted as my right-back right from the start. He was my number one at right-back, and the club have done a fantastic job of getting him.”

Dijksteel trained with his new team-mates for the first time this morning, and is available to make his debut in Saturday’s home game with Brentford.

“I’m really happy to get this deal over the line,” said the defender. “It’s taken a long time, but I’m here now and I’m really buzzing. It’s a big step for me, it’s a big club. I’ve progressed a lot, hopefully I can go higher and higher with Middlesbrough.”

Meanwhile, Boro youngster Sam Stubbs has joined Scottish side Hamilton Academicals on a season-long loan.