Middlesbrough FC news and transfer rumours: Boro linked with in form forward plus injury latest

Middlesbrough are just one of the clubs who have been linked with Crawley Town forward Bez Lubala this week.

Wednesday, 6th November 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 6th November 2019, 11:20 am

The 21-year-old only joined the League Two side from Birmingham City in the summer and has hit the ground running, scoring seven goals in 16 league appearances for The Reds.

Lubala’s recent form has inevitably led to speculation, and, according to TeamTalk, Sheffield Wednesday are leading the chase to sign the attacker in January.

The report claims Boro, Wigan and Peterborough have also watched the youngster in recent weeks.

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Forward Bez Lubala has impressed for League Two side Crawley Town this season.
Forward Bez Lubala has impressed for League Two side Crawley Town this season.

Former team-mate backs Woodgate

Gary O’Neil says his former team-mate Jonathan Woodgate has all the attributes to succeed in management and should be given more time at Middlesbrough.

Boro are 22nd in the Championship after 15 games and winless in eight, yet O’Neil doesn’t believe it’s time for another change.

“He was a leader in the dressing room and hugely respected,” said O’Neil asked about Woodgate’s playing days in an interview with 888sport.

“He was a fantastic player who’d had a fantastic career so you were drawn to him and respected that he’d played for Real Madrid

“They’ve obviously decided that he is the man for them and even though he’s very young managerial-wise he did have the experience of working under Tony Pulis last year.

“There has obviously been a huge cut in the budget so Jonathan Woodgate is not working with the same budget others had in previous years and with that has come a drop-off in performances and points return.

“I just think that clubs need to be very careful with always changing. I hope that Middlesbrough give him longer.

Injury latest

Boro look set to be without several players for Saturday’s Championship trip to QPR.

Ryan Shotton (knee), Darren Randolph (thigh), George Friend (thigh) and Rudy Gestede (hamstring) have all missed recent fixtures, while Ashley Fletcher also picked up a calf issue ahead of Saturday’s defeat at Derby.

Marcus Browne is also expected to miss the match at The Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium after pulling his hamstring during an under-23s game on Monday.

Ben Liddle, who has been in the first-team squad this season, also had to be withdrawn due to illness.