Isaiah Osbourne has revealed how Stewart Downing played a part in his move to Middlesbrough.
The Aston Villa youngster moved to The Riverside last week on loan, and he made his debut in the weekend loss at Crystal Palace.
And Osbourne admits that Teessider Downing - who left Boro for Villa in the summer - was full of praise for his hometown club.
"I spoke to Stewart before I came to Middlesbrough," said Osbourne.
"He obviously knows Middlesbrough inside and out, and he said that it's a great group of lads to be involved with.
"For me, though, it was not just about what Stewart had to say because I knew that Middlesbrough were a good club, having watched them in the Premier League over the years. It was also the good things I heard about the manager.
"I spoke to Stiliyan and Martin O'Neill about the manager.
"They both said that he likes teams to play football and that I will see a lot of the ball in his team. I love to get the ball down and play football.
"Basically that was what they said to me, 'if you want to get the ball down and play it on the deck, go and play for Middlesbrough'. I'm looking forward to my time here."
Osbourne remains hopeful he can have a major impact during his stay at the club, and he is targeting goals.
"The one thing that Martin O'Neill wants from me is to score more goals from midfield," said Osbourne.
"It's something I'm hoping my time at Middlesbrough will improve. I've never been one for scoring many goals but it's an area I would like to add to my game.
"It's been difficult being the new man and the new face in the Middlesbrough squad, but all the lads have been supportive since I arrived.
"It's been easy for me to settle in. Now I'm just looking to play as many matches as I can while I'm with Middlesbrough."