Aitor Karanka: Middlesbrough hope Kike Sola deal is 'close'

Kike Sola
Kike Sola has scored three goals in 10 games for Bilbao in 2015-16

Athletic Bilbao striker Kike Sola may be close to completing a loan move to Championship side Middlesbrough, says head coach Aitor Karanka.

Former Osasuna forward Sola, 29, has made 10 appearances for Athletic this season, scoring three goals for the Spanish La Liga side.

Boro currently have strikers Kike, Cristhian Stuani, Diego Fabbrini and David Nugent in their squad.

"He's bringing us something we don't have now," Karanka told BBC Tees.

"He's another striker, he's a second striker or sometimes number 10. His skills are different and he can play English football because he is strong and his skills are good."

Karanka has led Boro to the top of the Championship, five points clear of second-placed Hull after 25 games, but wants to assemble a squad capable of completing the job.

"You don't want a lot of players in the squad who can play one position," said Karanka. "You need 25-30 players, when you have players who can play in different positions.

"For example, Emilio Nsue came here as a winger but I knew he could play right-back and because of that I have the opportunity to sign other players."

Benfica defender Victor Lindelof is another player linked with the Teessiders during the January transfer window.

"He's on the list but our list is big," said Karanka.