Transfer gossip (Jan 19): Owls swoop, Boro eye former Leeds striker

Graphic by Graeme Bandeira.

Graphic by Graeme Bandeira.

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SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY are set to complete the loan signing of Aston Villa’s former Middlesbrough left-back Joe Bennett today.

The 25-year-old saw a loan spell at Bournemouth cut short earlier this season.

Bennett moved to Vila from Boro in a £2.75m deal in August 2012 - and is expected to undergo a medical today.

Bennett, who spent part of last season on loan at Brighton last term, joined the Cherries on deadline day last September but failed to make a single appearance before suffering an Achilles injury.

The arrival of Bennett could see Rhoys Wiggins, who has struggled for game time at Hillsborough, leave the club with Brighton and Bristol City interested.

Meanwhile, Leeds United full-back Sam Byram is at West Ham today, where he is expected to put the finishing touches to his move to the Hammers - after snubbing the advances of Everton.

The Blues were in the box seat to land Byram, only for the United player to opt for a move to the capital in a change of heart.

Middlesbrough are expected to come back in with a second offer for Fulham frontman Ross McCormack after seeing an initial £8m offer rebuffed by the Londoners.

The former Leeds United forward is at the top of Aitor Karanka’s January list of targets, which also includes Blackburn Rovers marksman Jordan Rhodes - also wanted by Sheffield Wednesday - and Crystal Palace’s Dwight Gayle.

Boro have held discussions with the Fulham hierarchy regarding McCormack, who has hit 15 goals already this season, with the Teessiders keen to add some attacking armoury to harden their drive for automatic promotion.

After seeing their initial bid for McCormack knocked back, the Riverside Stadium outfit are now preparing another offer for the 29-year-old, who left Leeds for Fulham in an £11m move in the summer of 2014.

Fulham remain intent on keeping McCormack, whom former Boro boss Tony Mowbray was interested in when he was at Leeds.

The Craven Cottage remain under a transfer embargo and fear that factor - allied to the loss of McCormack’s goals - would prove seriously detrimental to their campaign.

But Boro are widely expected to test their resolve once again.

Boro are set to confirm the signing of Swedish utility player Victor Lindelof - able to play in the back four and in a holding midfield role - today.

Lindelof is currently at Benfica and is a Sweden U21 international.

Rotherham boss Neil Redfearn is continuing to work towards boosting his striking numbers, with former Leeds striker Luciano Becchio on his wishlist along with former frontman Alex Revell.

The Millers are seeking international clearance to enable Becchio, a free agent and training with the club, to be part of their plans for this weekend’s trip to Cardiff.

Chris Maguire is expected to head out on loan against shortly when his temporary stint at Oxford expires with the Millers also keen to find new clubs for Greg Halford and Jordan Bowery.

Loan left-back Harry Toffolo has returned to parent club Norwich City.

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