Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka says he predicted Everton youngster Gerard Deulofeu's success

Middlesbrough take on Everton in the Capital One Cup this evening.

Aitor Karanka has told the Gazette that he gave the same advice to Everton’s Gerard Deulofeu as he did to Real Madrid’s Jese, when the pair were younger.

Karanka worked with Deulofeu and Jese when he was coaching the Spanish national side youth sides.

The Middlesbrough boss says that he saw the pair’s talents at an early age, and he told them that they had all the talent required to make it at the very top level.

“The first time I watched him play he was 14,” Karanka said. “He impressed me a lot.

“The first game he played with me, I took him and Jesé from Real Madrid, to my room.

“I told them at that time they had everything to be successful. Six, seven years later, one of them is at Everton and one is at Real Madrid, so I wasn’t wrong.”

Karanka will be aiming to stop Deulofeu tonight, as his Middlesbrough side are set to host Everton in the Capital One Cup quarter-final.

The former Barcelona winger has been in wonderful form for the Toffees so far this campaign, and he looks likely to start at the Riverside.

The 21-year-old has been Everton’s main supplier over the season so far, and his form has caught the eye of many observers.

Middlesbrough will be eager to stop him, but doing so is easier said than done.

Deulofeu’s willingness to run at defenders makes him difficult to mark, and Everton will be relying on the youngster to put in an excellent performance as they aim to make it into the semi-finals of the League Cup.

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