Rudy Gestede completes £6m Middlesbrough move

Rudy Gestede completes £6m Middlesbrough move

The Benin international target man has signed a deal which will keep him on Teesside until 2020

Sam France

Middlesbrough have got their January transfer dealings up and running with the signing of target man Rudy Gestede from Aston Villa.

A fee of £6million was agreed between the two clubs last week, and the Benin international has now put pen to paper on a three-and-a-half year deal after passing his medical at Rockliffe Park.

Villa have recouped the £6million fee they paid for Gestede in the summer of 2015, with the 28-year-old having scored ten goals for the West Midlands side in his year and a half at the club.

Speculation over Boro's forwards

The arrival of the new man is likely to hasten the exit from the Riverside Stadium of at least one of Boro's forwards already at the club, with David Nugent and Jordan Rhodes both the subject of intense transfer speculation.

Despite both forwards only joining the Teessiders last season, they have made a combined total of just eleven appearances for Middlesbrough this season and are thought to be wanted by numerous Championship clubs.

Conversely, there has been some suggestion that Boro could look to keep hold of Rhodes due to his partnership with Gestede from their time together at Blackburn Rovers. In the 2014-15 season, the pair scored over 40 goals for Rovers in all competitions.

Gestede yet to crack the top flight

However, with Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka favouring a single-striker formation, it seems more likely that both current backups to Alvaro Negredo will be replaced in January.

Gestede will return for his third spell in the Premier League, after featuring largely unsuccessfully in the top flight for both Villa and Cardiff City.

Prior to his arrival into English football with Cardiff, the 6'4" forward plied his trade for a number of years with FC Metz, where he came through the French club's youth system.