MIDDLESBROUGH will be offered the chance to sign Jordan Hugill on a permanent basis this summer, but West Ham United will be looking to recoup the £10m they shelled out to sign the striker just over a year ago.

Hugill joined Boro on a season-long loan last August, and has scored six goals in 31 Championship appearances this term.

He has spent most of his time ploughing a lone furrow at the head of the Middlesbrough attack, but his lack of success in front of goal has nevertheless persuaded West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini that he does not have a long-term future at the London Stadium.

Pellegrini will look to sell Hugill permanently this summer, but the West Ham hierarchy are unwilling to incur a major loss on the £10m fee that took the 26-year-old from Preston to East London in January 2018.

The Hammers will demand a similar price when the transfer window reopens, which is likely to scupper any prospect of Hugill remaining on Teesside.

Middlesbrough’s transfer plans will remain in a state of flux until their fate in the Championship promotion battle is known, and will also depend heavily on what happens to Tony Pulis beyond the end of the current campaign. Pulis’ contract is due to expire in the summer, and the Boro boss has hinted he could walk away when his deal ends.

If he leaves, his successor might have little interest in signing Hugill permanently, but even if he did, he would struggle to raise the funds needed to sign the Teessider if Boro fail to win promotion. If they were to make it to the Premier League, they could well set their attacking sights higher than Hugill, who has very little experience outside the Football League.

Meanwhile, Stewart Downing has been linked with a summer move to Rangers and a potential reunion with former Liverpool team-mate Steven Gerrard.

Downing is due to become a free agent in the summer, with Boro’s refusal to offer him a new contract on his current terms having resulted in the impasse that sees the 34-year-old unable to make another league start.

Gerrard has identified Downing as a leading summer target, with Rangers able to offer the former England international lucrative personal terms as they would not have to pay a transfer fee.