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Boro to sign Colombian centre-half Bernardo Espinosa

Middlesbrough have announced Colombian defender Bernardo Espinosa is to be their second new signing of the summer.

Bernardo Espinosa (left) has been with Sporting Gijon since 2013 after spells at Sevilla and Racing Santander. Credit: PA

The 26-year-old centre-half will join the promoted Premier League side on July 1 when his contract with Spanish club Sporting Gijon expires.

The Championship runners-up have already recruited Denmark winger Viktor Fischer from Ajax this summer.

Ajax winger Viktor Fischer set to join Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka is closing in on his first summer signing as he prepares for life in the Premier League.

The two clubs agreed a fee of around £3.8m. Credit: PA

Press Association Sport understands Ajax winger Viktor Fischer is due on Teesside to undergo a medical and discuss personal terms with the two clubs having reached agreement on a fee of around £3.8m.

Sources close to the player have indicated there is a four-year deal on the table for the Denmark international, who made 34 appearances for the Dutch club last season.

Karanka has wasted little time in starting to reshape his squad in the wake of promotion having released veteran Jonathan Woodgate and fellow defender Damia Abella at the end of their contracts on Tuesday.

It had already been confirmed that injury-plagued utility man Rhys Williams would be heading back to his native Australia to join Perth Glory.


Middlesbrough forward Stuani charged by the FA

Middlesbrough forward Cristhian Stuani has been charged for an "alleged act of violent conduct" by the Football Association.

Boro have said they will appeal the decision. Credit: PA

An FA panel reviewed video footage of an incident during Saturday's 1-0 win over Preston which was missed by the match officials.

Middlesbrough have already confirmed they will appeal against the charge by the deadline of 6pm on Tuesday.

An FA statement read:

Cristian Stuani has been charged for an alleged act of violent conduct which was not seen by the match officials but caught on video. The Middlesbrough forward was involved in an incident in the 54th minute of their game with Preston North End on Saturday April 9, 2016.

The matter was referred to by a panel of three former elite referees who each reviewed the video footage independently of one another to determine whether they considered it a sending-off offence. For an FA charge to follow, the decision by the panel must be unanimous.

– Middlesbrough club statement


Karanka resumes coaching duties at Middlesbrough

Aitor Karanka. Credit: PA

Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka has resumed his duties at the Championship club.

There had been much speculation that the Spaniard would leave the Riverside after a failed attempt to smooth over a bust-up ahead of Sunday's 2-0 defeat at Charlton, which he missed.

But, in a statement on the club website on Monday evening, Boro said: "Middlesbrough Football Club can confirm that head coach Aitor Karanka will be resuming first-team duties with the club with immediate effect.

"We have 10 games left this season and as a club we are fully focussed on what remains of our Championship campaign."

Blackburn prevent Middlesbrough from going top

Blackburn prevented Middlesbrough from going top of the Championship as a pair of Boro old boys outshone Jordan Rhodes on his Ewood Park return.

Danny Graham celebrates Blackburn's second goal. Credit: PA

Both Burnley boss Sean Dyche and Hull manager Steve Bruce were present to see the team that could have moved above them in the table stumble to a 2-1 loss against Paul Lambert's side.

Hope Akpan's header early in the second half was added to by a goal from ex-Boro striker Danny Graham while goalkeeper Jason Steele, who came through the ranks at the Riverside, played a starring role in denying Rhodes on multiple occasions and only shipped one goal late on to Adam Forshaw.

Swansea loanee Matt Grimes' brilliant cross from the left was met by Akpan's head six yards out and he directed the ball back across Konstantopoulos for the opening goal.

Graham doubled the hosts' advantage with seven minutes to go by reaching the diminutive Jackson's flick-on from Steele's clearance, with both Dyche and Bruce having already left the ground.

Forshaw drove in a reply in stoppage time but Boro were unable to find a way past their old academy graduate Steele again.

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