Downing worry for Boro
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
England international Stewart Downing is facing a spell on the sidelines.England international Stewart Downing is facing a spell on the sidelines.
The Middlesbrough winger is suffering with a knee problem, the same one he injured whilst with England earlier this year.
Now Downing, who has had surgery to correct the problem, is suffering swelling and is due to visit a specialist.
Downing has been forced to pull out of the England Under-21 squad to face Wales and Germany over the coming week.
The injury to Downing further weakens Boro's midfield, where manager Steve McClaren was already looking to strengthen ahead of Wednesday's transfer deadline.
Due to concerns over Downing's immediate fitness, Boro are reportedly ready to resurrect their interest in Rangers wide-man Peter Lovenkrands.
Their move for Sporting Lisbon's Rodolph Douala looks to have failed, which could mean a bid for Lovenkrands - who trained with the Teessiders last month.
Boro are also still pursuing central midfield targets with Fabio Rochemback remaining their number one option.
Rochemback is due in England in the next 48 hours, although the deal is far from certain to go through - mainly complicated by the fact that although he is at Sporting Lisbon, he is owned by Barcelona and both those clubs need to be happy before a deal can be formalised.
McClaren is also believed to be looking at Tomas Galasek, Sean Davis and Abel Xavier - who was with the club last week - although time is running out for Boro to land any other of their transfer targets.
Also on the transfer front - Boro are still hoping to trim the number of strikers at the club and both Joseph-Desire Job and Szilard Nemeth could leave in the next 48 hours.