Rhys Williams closes on Middlesbrough return

Boro set to be boosted by return of Australian international after nearly two-years out

Middlesbrough star Rhys Williams is ready to return to action after nearly two years out of action with an Achilles problem.

The Australian international, a graduate of Boro's famed academy, has featured in just two first-team games since he ruptured his Achilles against Wigan in January 2014.

He made a comeback in January this year, but again broke down just minutes into an FA Cup tie at Barnsley, and only know is he nearing full fitness.

But the 27-year-old former Boro skipper, believes he can deliver a huge boost to Aitor Karanka by pushing for a first-team place.

"I am really good, I have become a lot stronger, slimmer ,I can jump higher, run quicker and run further, I am in the best condition of my life," Williams told Boro's club website.

And Karanka is delighted that he could soon have Williams available, who can play across both defence and midfield.

"Rhys is training with the team, and we are thinking that he can play with the Under-21s next week,” Karanka told a press conference on Thursday.

“He is really good, and feels better than last season. We are all really pleased.”

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch