MIDDLESBROUGH look set to complete the signing of French trialist Malaury Martin.
The 22-year-old impressed during a spell at the club’s Rockliffe Park headquarters last week and is expected to join up with the rest of the squad at their Slovenia training camp this weekend.
Martin will pen a one-year deal with the Riverside club having been released by Blackpool at the end of last season.
Injury denied the midfielder the chance to make a single appearance for the Tangerines, who will face Boro in the Championship this season.
Martin had moved to Bloomfield Road from AS Monaco 12 months earlier and arrived with a big reputation having captained his national side at every level from U17 to U21.
And manager Tony Mowbray said: “He’s got talent.
“He’s a young player who’s trying to get his career back up and running after a bad injury.
“He can do a bit of everything, he could be a useful addition to our midfield.
“He can pass, tackle, defend and he has a great shot on him, so we’ll try to utilise his talents as we move on depending on whether we can finalise the deal.”
Boro, who jetted out to Slovenia yesterday, kick off their pre-season warm-up programme this evening when they take on Turkish side Istanbul BB in the Stojnci Stadium, Markovci.
They follow that with a trip to northern Croatia to take on Varteks Varazdin in Varazdin on Sunday.
The final game is next Tuesday against Turkish outfit Antalyaspor in Dravograd, which is to the north-east of the capital, Ljubljana.
Meanwhile, Boro have confirmed that Didier Digard’s proposed transfer to French side Nice has not yet been completed., though the midfielder’s move is expected to go through before the end of the week.
Digard, a £4million signing from Paris St Germain three years ago, still has one year remaining on his current contract but is one of the highest earners at the club.
And with Mowbray instructed to trim the wage bill this summer the 24-year-old’s departure could free up funds for movement in the opposite direction, starting with Martin’s anticipated arrival.
– CRAIG HOPE