Hammer Stewart Downing appears close to completing a return to Middlesbrough after West Ham gave him permission to speak to his hometown club in the town where he was born.
Reports this afternoon suggest two clubs are said to have agreed a fee of around £5m. The 30-year-old will have a medical examination as early as Thursday before meeting with chairman Steve Gibson. Assuming he passes a medical it is claimed he will then join the Middlesbrough squad at their Marbella training camp.
Downing joined West Ham in 2013 and made 37 Premier League appearances for the Hammers last season. Downing is said to have agreed a five year deal worth as much as £70,000 per week together with a £1 million bonus if Middlesbrough achieve promotion to the Premier League.
West Ham will remove one of their highest earners off their payroll as the £50,000 week man leaves freeing £2.6m off the annual wage bill.
Downing’s exit is also likely to pave the way for a loan deal for Argentine midfielder Manuel Lanzini from UAE-based club Al Jazira.
Reports have suggested that Lanzini has agreed to join the Hammers on a season long loan deal. Lanzini was previously linked with West Ham in the past but the former River Plate star opted for a move to Al Jazira for a fee of around £5.25million.