Portsmouth confident signing Middlesbrough's O'Neil

Portsmouth are confident of welcoming back Middlesbrough midfielder Gary O'Neil before the weekend.

The Portsmouth News says moves to bring the ex-Fratton favourite have progressed significantly and the Blues are hoping to tie things up before their Manchester City clash.

This is despite Middlesbrough chief executive Keith Lamb insisting O'Neil has not handed in a transfer request as previously thought and any offer for the midfielder would be rejected.

However, that is not going to deter Tony Adams, who is eager to bolster his side and spend a transfer kitty bolstered by Jermain Defoe's Spurs exit.

O'Neil's fee is likely to be priced at around £3m, although the precise figure will depend on issues over instalments from his previous transfer.

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