REPORTS suggest Reading are ready to offload striker Lucas Joao, with Middlesbrough one of several Championship clubs monitoring his situation.
With the Royals in an uncertain financial situation, Joao has been singled out as a player they can potentially offload for profit with a number of clubs ready to take a punt. The 28-year-old currently has one year left on his current contract, but manager Paul Ince may well have to make pre-season preparations without him.
An injury meant the premature end of last season, but he still managed to score ten goals in 24 appearances during a struggling season for the Berkshire side. In total, he has scored 38 goals in three seasons with Reading since signing from Sheffield Wednesday in 2019.
Joao also played for Portugal at senior level and has a cap for Angola, the country in which he was born.
Boro are looking for one or at least two strikers for next season after the return of Andraz Sporar, Aaron Connolly and Folarin Balogun to their parent clubs. Duncan Watmore and Josh Coburn are still among the forwards with Uche Ikpeazu and Chuba Akpom set to return from their respective loan spells.
Chris Wilder has declared his desire to correct his failures of last season with midfielder Matt Crooks finishing as the club’s top scorer with 11 goals. The Boro boss has already had a head start by agreeing advance deals after the club confirmed their shortlist. Sol Bamba, Neil Taylor and Lee Peltier were all released and their contracts ended this summer.
Premier League new boys Nottingham Forest have been credited with an interest in Joao with relegated trio Norwich City, Watford and Burnley spending next season in the Championship.