Middlesbrough’s manager Gordon Strachan was dealt a blow last night as his star winger Adam Johnson asked for permission to speak to Manchester City about a possible transfer, the Daily Express reports.
Roberto Mancini has expressed firm interest in the former England under-21 hotshot but may have to pay the north east club £9 million to get his man before the 5pm transfer deadline on Monday.
City are said to have made a £5 million bid for Johnson, but that will not be enough to tempt Strachan and Steve Gibson, the Boro’ chairman, to part with the club’s top scorer. His value will only have increased after his fine display at Doncaster on Tuesday, where he scored two excellent goals, in a 4-1 victory. Chelsea and Sunderland are also keeping a close eye on any developments.
Johnson’s contract runs out in the summer so the fee Middlesbrough are asking for is a large one, but they know they will be entitled to compensation in the summer should his contract run down due to the winger’s young age.
If the Teesside club do decide to sell then they could be tempted to put the money towards the £4 million rated Celtic striker Scott McDonald.
Strachan said: “There is no club who can turn down the right money for a player. But the perfect scenario would be if he stays.”
This season Johnson has made 23 appearances and scored an impressive 12 goals.
Is there any substance to this and should this rumour Fly or Die?