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Hoyte forced to have surgery
15 Dec 2008 - 13:04:00
Middlesbrough right-back Justin Hoyte will play no part in the festive programme after being forced to undergo cartilage surgery.
Boro boss Gareth Southgate does not expect the former Arsenal defender to return to first-team action until mid-January, as the injury list at the Riverside Stadium continues to lengthen.
Mido and Gary O'Neil are currently struggling with hamstring injuries while Andrew Taylor missed the 1-1 draw with Arsenal after failing a late fitness test on his knee.
In addition, Didier Digard limped out of the game with a groin strain and could be doubtful for Saturday's trip to Fulham.
"Hoyte had a cartilage op on Friday so he's out for four weeks," Southgate told the Evening Gazette.
"He's had the problem for a couple of weeks. We thought we might be able ride it out, but he took another bang on it at Hull and we were forced later in the week to operate."
Southgate has also commented on the surprising news that Real Madrid are interested in signing Adam Johnson.
He said of the speculation: "(Real boss Juande) Ramos would have had the sporting director at Tottenham identifying young players in England.
"So, among the good young players, he's probably thrown Adam in as a name.
"All the players that have been listed are good young players - Adam is a good young player - but whether there's any credibility in it we'll find out I suppose."