MARVIN EMNES should end his six-year association with Middlesbrough by the end of the week.
Swansea City have been in talks with Boro to finalise a deal following the 26-year-old’s initial loan spell at the Liberty Stadium.
Garry Monk, the Swans boss, now expects to have Emnes around for pre-season training after progress was made over the terms of the fee involved for the player.
It is likely Middlesbrough will recoup a little more than £1m for a player who cost £3.2m when Gareth Southgate was in charge in the summer of 2008.
Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka is keen to strike a deal to increase his own spending power and the seven-figure sum that will arrive from the Emnes sale will do just that.
Sunderland’s Danny Graham is still in Karanka’s sights, although the Premier League wages and the contract he is on at the Stadium of Light complicates that from being an easy deal to pull off.
Swansea have been long-term admirers of Emnes and have repeatedly tried to take him to South Wales, where he initially went on loan in October 2010.
He has shown he has ability during his time on Teesside but he was unable to hit the heights expected of him on a consistent basis under managers Southgate, Gordon Strachan, Tony Mowbray and Karanka.
Emnes only scored two goals last season; one in August for Middlesbrough and then on the final day of the Premier League season he scored for Swansea at Sunderland before outlining a wish to stay there beyond his loan.
His best season in a Middlesbrough shirt was under Mowbray in 2011-12, when he hit the net 12 times, earned a new contract and was the subject of strong interest and hefty offers from Swansea.
Eventually Swansea look set to land their man and Middlesbrough will look to bring in a long-term replacement having missed out on Lewis Grabban to Norwich and Adam Le Fondre to Cardiff.
Karanka also hopes to offload Lukas Jutkiewicz to Bolton, where he enjoyed a successful loan, but finances are more limited at the Reebok Stadium and the £1m price-tag could prove more difficult for the Trotters.
Following Graham’s return to Sunderland, Middlesbrough are desperate for more firepower before the pre-season friendlies begin in mid-July.
As things stand Curtis Main, Lee Tomlin and Kei Kamara – who could return to Sporting Kansas City – are the only senior players capable of playing as the lead striker.
Options at home and abroad are under consideration, with Wolves striker Kevin Doyle still a name thought to be in the frame. Doyle opted for QPR over Middlesbrough last season, but Rangers’ promotion to the Premier League is likely to mean they look more expensive and high-profile recruits. The Irish international is still expected to move on from Molineux this summer.