Middlesbrough are confident of agreeing a new contract with striker Mark Viduka as soon as the January transfer window closes.
The 31-year-old Australia international is out of contract at the end of the season and has been linked with a number of other Premiership clubs, but Boro chief executive Keith Lamb is confident of reaching an greement.
He said: "The transfer window means January is not the time to discuss the future of a player already under contract.
"Gareth Southgate could not have made his admiration for Mark more clear and both Mark and the fans know the manager wants him to stay.
"Everyone is aware of the difficult season we've had so far. Players and staff are dedicating all of their time and energy to our improving position on the pitch.
"Once the transfer window is closed, we will be only too pleased to sit down with Mark's adviser to discuss his future."
Viduka joined Boro in the summer of 2004 for £4.5million from Leeds United and has scored 28 goals in 83 appearances for the Teessiders.