Carlisle United have today signed Middlesbrough midfielder Connor Malley on a half-season loan deal which keeps him at Brunton Park until January 2021.
Newcastle-born Malley, 20, was snapped up by Sunderland as a youngster before making the switch to the Riverside.
He established himself in the under-18s, before stepping up to become a key part of the under-23 squad which, in turn, earned him a place on the first team bench for their Carabao Cup meetings with Rochdale and Preston during the 2018/19 campaign.
A three-year deal was signed with his parent club in 2019 and he spent the second half of last season on-loan with Scottish Championship side Ayr United, where he scored once in his five appearances prior to the lockdown.
Manager Chris Beech said: “Connor is a player I’ve been aware of for a while now.
“We’ve tracked him way back to when I first arrived at the club. He’s a talent, that’s for sure, and another player Middlesbrough have very high hopes for.
“He brings different attributes to what we’ve got in our group, and that’s a huge positive about this recruitment.
“As the games start to come thick and fast, and the anomalies of injuries and suspensions start to work their way in to your playing environment, it’s important we’ve got quality players with us that complement each other and provide us with a variety of tactical options. This move does just that.”
“He’s a creative attacking midfield player, he’s a good size and, at 20 years of age, is physically ready to step into League Two football,” he continued.
“Connor has good feet and has that magical knack to put himself in positions to be able to weave in and out of players and make things happen from those advanced areas on the pitch.
“On his day he’s an exciting talent to watch.
“He’s north east born and bred and it was no surprise that Middlesbrough were really keen to make sure he came to the right place if they were to allow him to go out on loan.”