Woodgate doubt for Boro

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Gareth Southgate concedes Jonathan Woodgate could miss Middlesbrough's opening game of the season.

Woodgate is currently working his way back to fitness after undergoing a knee operation at the end of last term.

The defender has yet to feature in Boro's pre-season programme and is rated doubtful for the first match against Blackburn Rovers on 11th August.

Boro boss Southgate admits the centre-half could be absent from his plans for the opener, but is confident he has enough cover at his disposal.

"Woody is obviously a doubt for the start of the season," Southgate told the Sunday Sun.

"He's not into full training yet and with him we've got to be a bit patient.

"The recovery from the operation that he had could be 12 weeks, could be 14.

"That couple of weeks takes us into the start of the season, but we knew that was a possibility and fortunately it's a position we've got a fair amount of cover in."