Middlesbrough's hopes of landing Heerenveen striker Afonso Alves could be hit by work permit problems.

Boss Gareth Southgate has put the Heerenveen hit-man at the top of his list of potential recruits, but the 26-year-old has only won five full international caps.

Alves made most of those appearances at the Copa America when the top Brazilians were absent, but Boro hope to claim that he is now central to new coach Dunga's plans.

The move will hinge on Boro winning an appeal for Alves as he will fail the initial criteria.