Middlesbrough set to battle Leeds for international midfielder Mo Besic

Mo Besic
Mo Besic

Middlesbrough and Leeds are preparing to do battle for Everton midfielder Mo Besic.

Besic, 25, spent the second half of last season on loan at the Riverside, and was an influential figure as Boro reached the play-offs.

Tony Pulis is reportedly interested in bringing Besic back to Teesside, however Leeds are also hopeful of completing a permanent deal.

Marcelo Bielsa's side were reportedly planning a £4.5million swoop for the Bosnian international, however Sky Sports have claimed today that Boro are still trying to sign the player on loan.

If a move isn't completed before this evening, both clubs could still negotiate a loan move before August 31.

Besic was arguably Boro's standout midfielder in the second half of last season after arriving in January.

It came after Besic had fallen out of favour at Goodison Park following an injury-hit spell on Merseyside, where he still appears to be surplus to requirements.

The Bosnian made 17 appearances for Boro, while his ability to break up play and run with the ball was fundamental for Pulis' side.

Even so, Boro are well stocked in the middle of the park, with Adam Clayton, Jonny Howson, Grant Leadbitter, Paddy McNair and academy product Lewis Wing all competing for places.

Pulis will also want to recruit more offensive players before tonight's deadline, after completing a loan deal for West Ham striker Jordan Hugill yesterday.

Everton winger Yannick Bolasie has also been linked with a move to the North East.