Downing told to forget quitting Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough have ruled out allowing Stewart Downing to leave this month.

Boro had opened talks with Tottenham over Downing's transfer earlier this month, but the deal has dragged on and the move is now dead.

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Boro boss Gareth Southgate insisted he was always keen for his England winger to stay and it now seems Downing will remain at the Riverside - until the summer at least.

"Stewart is not for sale, both myself and the chairman Steve Gibson told him that. He is a very important player for us," said Southgate.

"Stewart met with the chairman on Thursday and is probably letting it all sink in.

"January is an unsettling period for many players. Some think they are on their way when they aren't and some want to be on their way and end up staying.

"As far as we are concerned with Stewart, it is dead."

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