MIDDLESBROUGH head to Barnsley tomorrow, with Neil Warnock admitting that Tykes striker Daryl Dike is exactly the type of front-man he would love to be able to sign this summer.

Dike joined Barnsley on loan from MLS side Orlando City in January, and the 20-year-old American has been a revelation in his first two months at Oakwell.

His seven goals in 13 Championship appearances have helped keep Barnsley in the heart of the promotion race, with his pace, physicality and athleticism making him ideally suited to English football.

Barnsley are reported to have a £17m buyout option for the striker, and the South Yorkshire club would almost certainly look to trigger it if they were to win promotion to the Premier League.

If they miss out, Dike might well go to the highest bidder, and while the American would almost certainly be out of Middlesbrough’s price range, he provides a template for what Warnock will be looking for as he attempts to overhaul his forward line this summer.

The Boro boss said: “I think they’ve probably got the best striker in the division in Dike. It’s said they’ve got a £17m buyout, so I would imagine if they go up, they’ll be buying him because he’s been unbelievable when I look at his clips. He scores goals, he’s big, strong and young. He’s got every attribute really.

“I’d have him tomorrow, but I don’t think Steve (Gibson) will mortgage the Riverside for that. He’s got a £17m buyout, but he’s got all the attributes. Good luck to them. I think the owners had a link with the club in America, which got them first choice, and he’s come over and been a revelation.

“I don’t think I’ve seen anyone quite like him in terms of having an impact straight away in a league like the Championship. He’s been unbelievable, and I think the rest of their players have just responded to his strength.”

Boro will try to stop Dike without Dael Fry, with the Teessider still a couple of weeks away from a first-team return.

Marcus Tavernier should also return for the final couple of games of the season, but neither Anfernee Dijksteel nor Sam Morsy are expected to play again before the end of the campaign.

Warnock said: “I think Dael will come back before Tav. I think Dael is going to be a couple of weeks. Tav is probably around three weeks, we might get him back for the last two games but I don’t know, roughly that sort of time.

“Dijksteel looked good yesterday, everyone in the club is watching his weight and he looked quite slim yesterday so we were quite pleased about that. We have to keep an eye on him the next few weeks because he’s got to come out firing on all cylinders for next season.”