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Friend signs new Middlesbrough contract

George Friend. Credit: PA

Middlesbrough full-back George Friend has signed a contract extension which will keep him at the Riverside Stadium until the summer of 2020.

The 28-year-old, who joined the club from Doncaster in July 2012, played a key role in Boro's promotion to the Premier League at the end of last season and has been named in the PFA Championship Team of the Year at the end of the last two campaigns.

Friend said: "For me, committing to the Boro for another four years is because of so many things - a fantastic chairman, a brilliant manager and staff, great team-mates, absolutely amazing fans and a beautiful area in which to live.

"I am very grateful and thankful to everyone who has encouraged and supported me. What I can promise in return is to continue to try to give 100 per cent commitment to the club."

Middlesbrough captain to miss start of the season

Leadbitter pictured celebrating 'Boro's promotion to the Premier League. Credit: PA

Middlesbrough captain Grant Leadbitter will miss the start of the Premier League season after undergoing surgery to repair a hernia problem.

The 30-year-old midfielder was a key figure in Boro's promotion drive last season despite playing through the final two months of the season only after having a series of painkilling injections.

Leadbitter has now had an operation, but the problem was more extensive than first thought and he will not now be fit for the start of the new season.

A statement on the club's official website, www.mfc.co.uk, said: "Grant Leadbitter is set to miss the start of the 2016/17 Premier League season after undergoing surgery earlier this year.

"The Boro skipper had an operation to correct an injury he had been carrying for the last two months of the season and further investigation has shown that the injury is worse than first anticipated."

Middlesbrough open talks with Valencia over Negredo

Middlesbrough are hopeful of striking a deal which will bring Valencia forward Alvaro Negredo to the Riverside Stadium.

Could we see this man in a Middlesbrough shirt next season? Credit: PA

The newly-promoted Teessiders are understood to have opened talks over the 30-year-old former Manchester City frontman as head coach Aitor Karanka looks to boost the firepower at his disposal in the Barclays Premier League.

However, the negotiations are proving painstaking with Boro seeking an initial loan agreement without taking on full responsibility for the player's existing financial package.

Discussions are understood to have been ongoing for some time and, while progress has been made, any deal remains distant.

Madrid-born Negredo scored 23 goals in his one season at City before returning to Spain to join Valencia, initially on loan and then in a £19million permanent switch.

He has managed just five league goals in each of his last two LaLiga campaigns, although his physical presence has proved a major weapon.

Middlesbrough sign ex-Manchester United goalkeeper

Former Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes has signed a two-year contract for newly promoted Premier League side Middlesbrough after his unhappy spell at Manchester United.

The club tweeted an image of Valdes alongside his new boss Aitor Karanka.

The 34-year-old spent part of last season on loan at Standard Liege after falling out of favour with former United boss Louis van Gaal.

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