MIDDLESBROUGH’S next manager looks certain to be on the look-out for at least one new striker as soon as they fill the breach left by Tony Pulis – amid talk that Slavisa Jokanovic is set to be interviewed for the post.

Former Fulham boss Jokanovic is thought to have been shortlisted along with a number of others, as Boro chairman Steve Gibson looks to make the right appointment before tinkering is carried out with the squad.

It has also been widely reported that former England captain John Terry, who is currently Aston Villa’s No 2 ahead of the Championship play-off final, is interested in the post and Boro are aware, while Jonathan Woodgate is still firmly in the mix too.

Whoever is brought in will soon learn how striker Britt Assombalonga, the leading scorer for the last two seasons, has got growing interest in him and Middlesbrough will be happy enough to move him on to reduce the club’s wage bill.

As reported in The Northern Echo earlier this month, Sheffield United are the front-runners for his signature after sealing promotion to the Premier League.

But it has now emerged that Fulham, relegated from the top-flight and armed with parachute payments to try to get back up at the first attempt, are ready to do battle for his signature.

As well as still being armed with top-flight monies, the Cottagers are also likely to sell players this summer – including £20m striker Aleksandar Mitrovic.

And Assombalonga, with a proven record for scoring in the Championship with Nottingham Forest and Middlesbrough, is regarded as an ideal target to slot in and boost manager Scott Parker’s options following relegation.

The Blades’ interest in him will complicate things, but Middlesbrough do look well placed to offload before the start of the campaign – and that would mean Pulis’ successor having to bring in an adequate replacement.

Jordan Hugill will return to West Ham following his half-season loan, while Rudy Gestede and Martin Braithwaite are also available. Ashley Fletcher, after a decent finish to the campaign, looks the most likely of the forwards to be still at the Riverside, although not even that is certain.

Middlesbrough chairman Gibson has spent this week considering the options on the managerial front, with Woodgate still the front-runner for the job despite news of the interest in Jokanovic.

Woodgate, the club’s former player and captain, is looking for a break into management and has survived a cull of the backroom staff this week, which also included the departure of former Boro defender Curtis Fleming.

But Woodgate is far from certain to get the job. It is even unlikely that an appointment will be made this week because Gibson is determined to assess the credentials of the all the contenders, with a short-list being drafted.

Lincoln City’s highly-rated young boss Danny Cowley is known to be under consideration within the Middlesbrough boardroom, and his track record in the lower leagues with the Imps has been outstanding.

The 40-year-old led Lincoln to the League Two title this season and West Brom have already made contact in their search for a new boss following Darren Moore’s exit.

Barnsley’s Daniel Stendel is another to have emerged on the bookmakers’ radar in recent days. The 45-year-old German guided Barnsley to promotion to the Championship this season and would be someone who fits the sort of model Middlesbrough are believed to be looking at.

Terry is keen to take a step into frontline management, while Ajax’s reserve team boss Michael Reiziger is still being mentioned. Jokanovic would excite fans having impressed during spells at Watford and Fulham.