The former Liverpool winger’s future in East London has been heavily questioned following Slaven Bilic’s arrival and the ensuing acquisition of French international Dimitri Payet.
Furthermore, the Chronicle recently accredited fellow North East outfit Sunderland with making a £7 million bid for Downing, having seen an initial bid reportedly turned down.
Fresh reports, however, claim Aitor Karanka’s side currently lead the chase, with Boro hoping to finalise a deal in the coming week with payment discussions over a £6 million transfer ongoing.
Would dropping down to the Championship be a wise option of Stewart Downing?
Considering his age, Downing is now at a critical stage of his career where his next move is arguably his most important, both financially and from a sporting perspective.
He knows Boro well from his time there, and on last season’s basis there is no reason why the Riverside outfit can’t go one better and claim an automatic promotion spot.
The foundations are there for the club to become an established Premier League outfit again, and what better challenge lies ahead for Downing than helping his former club reclaim their spot at the top?