Rhys set for playing return

Asian Cup long shot Rhys Williams has this week returned to training and is set for a return to action with Middlesbrough’s Under-21s.

Williams was selected in Australia coach Ange Postecoglou’s provisional 46-man Asian Cup squad earlier this week despite being out with an Achilles injury since January.

The injury-cursed 26-year-old appears a long shot to make the final squad, with Postecoglou admitting he named him just in case.

However, the news of his pending return means Williams could mount a case if all goes well for the utility.

Boro boss Aitor Karanka confirmed the news, along with the return of Jonathon Woodgate, on the club’s website.

“They’ve both trained with us this week which is good news,” Karanka said.

“They could be our ‘transfer window’ signings.”

Middlesbrough have indicated Williams is likely to play for the club’s Under-21s on Monday against Burton Albion.