Paul Ince says he is flattered to be linked to the Middlesbrough post
Ince has been out of management since leaving Blackpool in 2014.
The former England and Boro midfielder was in there running for the Wolves job earlier this season.
His price on landing the Middlesbrough post has dropped from 40/1 to 3/1 today.
And while the 49-year-old admits he would take the call from Boro chairman Steve Gibson, he is backing caretaker manager Steve Agnew to get the job full time.
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"Firstly, I’ve no idea where the Middlesbrough link has come from. I’ve been out playing golf all day, and got home to calls asking about it," he said.
"The truth is, I haven’t spoken to Boro. The chairman has my number, but he hasn’t called.
Personally, I hope Steve Agnew gets the job and keeps them up.
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"I had a fantastic three years at the club – I had great times there, and really enjoyed my time there with Terry Venables.
"It’s a great place. Every time I go up there – most recently for the FA Cup game against Man City – I get a great reception, which isn’t always the case with my former clubs!"
Steve Agnew is currently in temporary charge of Middlesbrough
Ince played for Boro between 1999 and 2002 after a stint at Liverpool. The former Manchester United star heeled keep Boro in the Premier League before moving on to Wolves.
And Ince puts a lot of Middlesbrough's success down to chairman Gibson, who has been in sole charge of the club since 1994.
"It’s a massive club which will always have a special place – the chairman, Steve Gibson, is one of the best you could work for in football, and he always looked after me," Ince said.
"On a personal note, I hope they can survive for him. He’s put so much heart, soul and money into the club that he deserves more than relegation.
"He stays true his managers, which is rare in football. If I were to go back into management – and that’s not a guarantee because I’m enjoying my BT work so much at the moment – he’d be the type of chairman I’d want to work for.
"So I’m gutted to see them struggling, but I think they’ve still got a chance to get out of it. There’s still 25 per cent of the season still to go."
Ince (right) is a regular TV pundit, having not managed since 2014
Ince played for Middlesbrough for three years
Middlesbrough sit second bottom of the Premier League – five points from safety. Manager Aitor Karanka was sacked earlier this month after failing to win a league match since Christmas.
But despite the turmoil Ince believes his former club will escape the drop.
"They’ve got a run of three games now – Swansea and Hull away, before Burnley at home – where it’s absolutely vital they pick up some points. A few wins there would change everything," he said.
"If they’re going to get those results – whoever’s in charge – they’re going to need to start scoring goals. I know that, last season, they were a very defensive unit, and they didn’t concede many, but you can’t replicate that in the Premier League – the gulf in quality is too vast.
"If they can start to nick a few points here and there, they’ll have a chance. Especially at home. I remember playing in a crucial relegation fixture in my time at the club, and I scored to make it 2-2 against Bradford. That got us going again, the next week we beat Arsenal, and the rest is history."
As for Ince, he remains confident he will get back into the management game eventually.
"I’ve been frustrated that I haven’t had more job offers, because I think my CV is better than many people give me credit for – given that most of my teams had no budget – but it is flattering to be linked with a club that means so much to me," he said.
Paul Ince was speaking exclusively to the Paddy Power blog.