Strachan favourite for Boro job

Boro chairman Steve Gibson is hoping to name Gareth Southgate’s successor as manager within the next 48 hours.

Gibson told BBC: “Once the decision had been made – and that was two or three weeks ago – about replacing Gareth, we needed to build a strategy and a timetable of implementation.

“In order to do that, we needed to be fair with Gareth, treat him with the respect he deserved, and the first step in that strategy was to remove Gareth from his duties. That’s been done.

“I had made enquiries before I did that, and I told Gareth that. We had, as I said, a strategy and we started the implementation of that strategy.

“We are well on with it. I have been very busy today with it; tomorrow will be another busy day.

“I don’t expect us to have somebody in place before the Preston game, but I do expect us to be able to make an announcement before the Preston game.

“Nothing is certain in football, but I am hopeful we will have an announcement before the weekend.”

Gibson added: “When this situation happens, there’s a lot of speculation and I am not going to narrow down that speculation in any way.

“I have employed three managers fresh: Bryan Robson brought us in a fantastic six years, and I hope he is remembered for that; Steve McClaren was the most successful manager in the club’s history.

“The circumstances for Gareth were somewhat more difficult in a changing football world where it became more and more competitive.

“A period of Gareth’s reign was quite successful, Steve McClaren was very successful, so I wouldn’t rule out a rookie manager, but I suspect that’s not the path I will be going down.”