Having scored just 31 goals in 28 Championship games this season, Middlesbrough are in search for attacking intent to resolve their woes in front of goal.
According to reports, Middlesbrough and West Bromwich Albion are both in advanced stages to complete a move for Newcastle winger Jacob Murphy in the remaining time of the January transfer window.
However, owing to the financial difficulties which the club is currently facing, Boro would initially sign Murphy on loan, with an option to make the move permanent in the summer.
Boro executives have already done the groundwork that would see the £11m-rated player move to Teesside, though they have been told to wait.
The reason for this lies in the shortage of attacking options at St. James Park, which has forced manager Rafael Benitez to place a condition that he’d only let the attacker go provided owner Mike Ashley sanctions a deal for a replacement first.
Another thing which might complicate the deal is the interest fellow Championship side West Brom have shown in the winger, who are reportedly impressed by the time Murphy spent at Norwich before moving to Newcastle in the summer of 2017.
Still, as far as Boro are concerned, they believe that they have the edge in the race to sign Murphy since the Newcastle management have given them the green light to sign the player.
Murphy isn’t a new player on Boro’s radar, as he was on the list of potential recruits which the club had drawn up last summer.
Boro again indicated their interest in the player come January and were informed that Newcastle would let him go provided they could secure a replacement first.
Before arriving at St. James Park in 2017, where he has managed 34 appearances in two seasons, Murphy was at Norwich City. The Canaries promoted him from their youth academy before loaning him to a number of clubs during his 11-year stay at the club.
Consequently, with him turning only 24 in February, Boro would get a potentially decent signing provided they could secure his services in the remaining hours of the January transfer window.