Middlesbrough have been given first refusal on striker Jordan Hugill, according to West Ham news site Claret & Hugh.

The forward has joined Middlesbrough on a season-long loan from West Ham United, and looks to be settling into life on Teesside having impressed on his first start for the club against Bolton Wanderers last night.

Hugill assisted Boro’s opening goal of the night, teeing up George Saville to put the home side in front, and  he also scored his first goal for the club against Rochdale in the Carabao Cup second round last month.

He joined West Ham United from Preston North End in January for an undisclosed fee and played just 22 minutes in five months at the club. The Hammers believed Hugill’s short-term future is better placed elsewhere, and he signed for Middlesbrough in the summer.

Now with the East London side looking to cut their losses, they are prepared to allow the 26-year old to join his boyhood club Boro on a permanent deal next season, although no fee has yet been mentioned. They are also allowing Fiorentina to have first refusal on Edimilson Fernandes, who is another player the Hammers are prepared to show the exit door to.

Boro currently have competition for places in attack, with Martin Braithwaite, Britt Assombalonga, Rudy Gestede and Ashley Fletcher all in the pecking order alongside Hugill. But given Tony Pulis’ recent admiration and praise of Hugill, it seems the Welshman would want to bring the striker back to the club on a permanent deal if the offer was on the table.

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Lifelong Boro fan - from the highs of watching Juninho and the Carling Cup victory, to the lows of Gordon Strachan and Lee Dong Gook

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