MIDDLESBROUGH have held ‘productive’ discussions with David McGoldrick, and are close to making the striker their fourth signing of the summer.

McGoldrick was at Boro’s Rockliffe Park training ground on Friday to discuss a potential deal with Chris Wilder and the rest of the Teessiders’ recruitment team.

The 34-year-old is a free agent following his release from Sheffield United at the end of last season, and is set to sign a deal with Boro that will enable him to remain in the Championship.

Friday’s talks have been described as ‘productive’, with McGoldrick set to be reunited with Wilder after the pair enjoyed success together at Bramall Lane.

The Republic of Ireland international joined Sheffield United from Ipswich Town in 2018, and scored 15 goals as a Wilder-led Blades side won promotion to the Premier League.

He scored ten goals in the top-flight across the course of the following two seasons, and while he was not necessarily a regular starter in the Premier League, he remained an extremely valued member of Wilder’s squad.

“He came in and excited everybody from the first day in,” said Wilder at the time. “He scored goals in our promotion year, and he’s got a great attitude and work ethic. He’s one of the favourites of the punters, a favourite with the players and one of the best players I have ever worked with.”

It is that experience, leadership and professionalism Wilder is keen to add to his squad, with McGoldrick set to be one of three attacking players added to Boro’s first-team group this summer.

Andraz Sporar, Aaron Connolly and Falorin Balogun have left since the end of last season, with Chuba Akpom and Uche Ikpeazu also expected to depart in the next few weeks, so while Wilder accepts there is a need to sign a marquee forward to become the first-choice option, the Boro boss is also keen to add some much-needed depth to his attacking ranks.  

The signing of McGoldrick would help with that, with the Nottingham-born forward capable of slotting into the side as and when required.

Boro have completed three signings so far this summer, adding goalkeeper Liam Roberts, wing-back Ryan Giles and centre-half Darragh Lenihan to their ranks.