Mowbray defends Hoyte

Boro boss praises versatility and attitude of former Arsenal man

Justin Hoyte: Can frustrate fans but Tony Mowbray is full of admiration

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Middlesbrough manager Tony Mowbray has given his backing to Justin Hoyte following criticism of the player from some supporters.

The former Arsenal man has been asked to fill a number of roles in the Boro side this term, including in defence and midfield.

And Mowbray said he has done everything asked of him without complaint, describing the 26-year-old as a model professional.

"Whatever I ask Justin Hoyte to do, he does," Mowbray told the Evening Gazette.

"I ask him stay wide and run up and down, he does it. If I ask him to drive between centre-halves and full-backs, he does it. If I ask him to protect Tony McMahon behind him, he does it.

"It's great for a manager to have that. And yet I understand that if he gets in a great crossing position and puts it behind the goal, people get frustrated.

"I would like people to know that he's just a very, very good, hard-working professional. The fact I pick him most weeks is testament to his ability."