Boro to step up Smith interest
By Lewis Rutledge
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Middlesbrough are still looking to push through a deal for Alan Smith.Middlesbrough are looking to push through a deal for Alan Smith when he returns from Manchester United's tour of Asia.
Sir Alex Ferguson recently hinted that Smith could be set to leave Old Trafford as he admitted he could not be guaranteed regular football.
United chief executive David Gill said earlier this week there had been 'no firm offers' for Smith but Boro counterpart Keith Lamb has again stressed his interest in the player.
He said: "Our position hasn't changed. If you go back a few weeks it was well documented that we had agreed a fee with Manchester United for his transfer and were given permission to talk to Alan.
"Unfortunately Alan was away on holiday and when he came back he went straight off on tour with Manchester United, so we haven't had the opportunity to speak to Alan.
"But I'm sure that he is well aware of our interest and I'm sure that in the next few days the opportunity to speak to Alan will present itself.
"And if it's right for Alan and if it's right for Middlesbrough, then I'm sure that it's something that we might well conclude, you never know."
Boro boss Gareth Southgate also has huge admiration for Smith and hopes that he will soon agree a move to The Riverside.
"It's a situation that we are monitoring very closely," said Southgate.
"It's apparent that his future at Manchester United isn't certain and he falls into the category of being a quality player and a good character.
"That is of course someone that would interest us.
"It would appear that that situation is changing by the day, so if he wants to move on obviously the mindset changes."