Nottingham Forest, Swansea City and Birmingham City are all looking to lure George Friend away from Middlesbrough this summer, as the defender weighs up the Teessiders’ offer for him to remain.
As per Football Insider reports, Boro have tabled an offer to the free agent to stick around for the 2020/21 campaign, as Neil Warnock looks to retain the defender’s service for his first full season in-charge at the Riverside.
However, there’s added competition for Friend, with the same report indicating that Forest and Swansea are in the mix to sign the 32-year-old and could offer him a fresh opportunity in the Championship after a long stint in the North East.
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In terms of Birmingham’s interest, Aitor Karanka has recently been appointed at St Andrew’s, which gives his interest a little bit of background.
He managed Friend at Middlesbrough, with the pair winning promotion together during the 2015/16 campaign.
Friend has been with Boro since the summer of 2012 and has made 299 appearances for the Teessiders during his time with the club.
Those appearances have been across a number of competitions, including the Premier League, Championship, Championship play-offs, FA Cup and League Cup.
Friend has been a great servant for Middlesbrough and it is little surprise that Warnock wants to keep him around for the new season.
However, he’s made almost 300 appearances for Boro now and might fancy a fresh start.
Nottingham Forest and Swansea are attractive options given their success in 2019/20, whilst linking back up with Karanka, who was so successful at Boro, might also benefit the defender.
Thoughts? Let us know!