Middlesbrough step up striker search, Watford man discusses future plus Chelsea to beat Aston Villa to shock deal

There’s just over a week to go until the start of the new Championship campaign – and Middlesbrough are still hoping to make more signings before their season opener at Fulham.

By Joe Nicholson
Tuesday, 27th July 2021, 9:00 am

Here are some of the latest Boro-related stories from around the web.

Boro in talks with striker

Boro have previously been linked with South American frontman Rodrigo Muniz.

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Rodrigo Muniz playing for Flamengo.

It appears the 20-year-old striker will be allowed to leave Brazilian side Flamengo this summer, and it’s been reported there is interest from across Europe.

Yet according to fresh reports from Brazilian media outlet Coluna Do Fla, Boro is now his most likely destination for Muniz.

It’s been claimed that Fulham and Dubai-based club Al Nasr remain interested in the player, yet the report claims a meeting was held this week between Flamengo representatives, as well as Boro chief executive Neil Bausor and coach Leo Percovich.

If Boro do pursue a move it’s likely the initial deal would be a loan move, potentially with an option to buy.

Reported target focussing on international tournament

Another striker who has been linked with Boro this summer is Watford striker Andre Gray.

The Teessiders were said to be interested in a loan move for Gray, who is representing Jamaica at the Gold Cup in the USA.

When asked about his future, Gray said: “My future is down to Watford. If they want me to stay, I am going to fight for my place in the Premier League.

“I believe I am good enough. But I am not thinking about club football. I am focussed on Jamaica and trying to win.”

Former keeper set for shock move

Finally, former Boro goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli looks set to seal a shock move to Chelsea.

The 29-year-old, who made 42 appearances while on loan at Boro last season, is a free agent after his contract expired at Fulham.

According to the Daily Mail, Bettinelli has turned down advances from Aston Villa and will now sign a two-year deal at Chelsea.

Bettinelli will become the Blues’ third-choice keeper following the departure of Willy Caballero, and will add to Chelsea's homegrown contingent in the squad.

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