Chelsea striker Patrick Bamford and midfielder George Saville are poised to join Championship side Middlesbrough on loan deals. Boro boss Aitor Karanka, who worked as Jose Mourinho’s assistant manager at Real Madrid, hopes to add the talented duo to his ranks in the coming weeks.
Mourinho has already sent Nigeria international Kenneth Omeruo, 20, to the Riverside Stadium - and the gifted centre-back is now expected to be joined by his Blues’ teammates Bamford and Saville.
This is according to the Express, who claim that Karanka is desperate to prepare a side capable of competing for promotion to the Premier League come May. Middlesbrough, who last featured in England’s top flight back in 2009, finished last season’s Championship campaign in 12th place.
Karanka wants Bamford and Saville
"We are improving every day and showing we are a good team, but I also want to sign more players," Karanka told reporters. "We are not strong enough at the moment. I want players who can't sleep because they are worried that someone else will take their place.
"I hope we will sign the two from Chelsea. The club are working on that, but we have got seven games in 22 days so I'm concentrating on the games."
Middlesbrough have enjoyed an encouraging start to the season, beating Birmingham City 2-0 in their Championship opener before recording a convincing 3-0 victory over Oldham Athletic in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night.
And both Bamford and Saville are expected to jump at the opportunity to play regular first-team football with a club intent on securing promotion to the Premier League.
Premier League interest in Bamford
However, 20-year-old Bamford is reportedly on the radar of newly-promoted Premier League side Queens Park Rangers.
The England Under-21 international, who impressed on loan at MK Dons and Derby County last season, may hold out for that move to materialise - or wait for another Premier League offer - before accepting Middlesbrough’s invitation.
Watch: Patrick Bamford in action
Saville to jump at Middlesbrough chance
Saville, meanwhile, played a key role in helping Brentford secure promotion to the Championship last season. However, there has been no reported interested from any Premier League clubs, and the player will be keen to prove himself in the second tier of English football.
Mourinho currently has no use for either player in his first-team squad, with competition for first-team places fierce.
Neither Bamford nor Saville have made their senior competitive debuts for Chelsea - and it could be some time before either of them feature for Mourinho’s side.
However, an impressive season-long loan at the Riverside Stadium would at least give the Chelsea boss something to think about heading into the 2015/16 campaign.