HITC Sport understands Southampton are eyeing a move for the Middlesbrough star.

Middlesbrough’s Ben Gibson in action with Burnley’s Ashley Barnes

Southampton are considering a move for Middlesbrough defender Ben Gibson, HITC Sport understands from sources close to the club.

Middlesbrough are facing a battle to keep hold of Gibson this summer following their relegation from the Premier League.

A number of clubs are keeping tabs on Gibson’s situation as they look to bolster their defensive options ahead of next season.

Gibson caught the eye for Middlesbrough last season despite their relegation and he was an ever-present in their side in the Premier League.

Middlesbrough’s Ben Gibson applauds fans 

Middlesbrough had one of the best defensive records last season and Gibson was instrumental in helping their defensive solidity.

Gibson was rewarded with his first senior England call-up in March and he kept his place in the squad for the recent clashes with Scotland and France.

Southampton are in the market for defensive reinforcements this summer with doubts continuing to surround the future of Virgil van Dijk, while the club have yet to replace Jose Fonte following his move to West Ham United during the January transfer window.

Middlesbrough are bracing themselves for offers for Gibson this summer and Southampton are hoping to steal a march on their rivals by luring the 24-year-old to St Mary’s.

Middlesbrough’s Ben Gibson in action with Sunderland’s Victor Anichebe

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