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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jul, 22, 2006

Southgate still keen on Huth

Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate is still confident of signing Chelsea defender Robert Huth.

The deal seemed to be scuppered when the German player failed a medical at the Riverside Stadium last week due to an ankle injury.

However, after watching his side go down 1-0 to Rangers in a friendly at Ibrox thanks to a Thomas Buffel goal just before the interval, the new Boro boss claimed he was optimistic about completing the Huth deal soon.

He said: 'Robert unfortunately had an injury in the World Cup that he reported with and we needed to be a bit clearer about it before we were able to sign him.

'But we are in discussions with Chelsea to see how it's progressing.

'I wouldn't want to put it in percentage terms because it is a bit of an unknown.

'We were disappointed not to have been able to do it but we are still monitoring the situation.'

Southgate watched the first half of the game against the Scottish side from up in the main stand but insists he will be down in the technical area when the season begins in earnest.

He said: 'I was upstairs for the first half because it was only a friendly game and you get a clearer view.

'It gives you an opportunity to look at things and see how they are working out but I think I will be down on the touchline when the season starts.'

Despite the defeat Southgate was happy enough with his side's workout against a team who are a fortnight ahead of them in their pre-season preparations.

He said: 'Generally speaking I am pleased with what we did.

'We played some good football and created some good chances and in fact we probably had more chances than Rangers did.

'The positives are we have been working on keeping position and we did that. Some mistakes we made were down to fatigue while we need to tighten up on other things.

'But generally speaking we played well.'

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