Rovers are looking to sign free agent Stewart Downing and hope Tony Mowbray’s knowledge of the player can seal the deal.

Downing is free to leave boyhood club Middlesbrough having not been offered a new deal at the Riverside.

The winger, who turns 35 in July, will not be short of options, with Scottish Premiership side Rangers, as well as clubs overseas, likely to be in the running for his signature.

Downing would bring a wealth of experience to the Rovers squad, something Mowbray is keen to add, with 400 appearances for Middlesbrough, as well as 35 England caps and spells with Aston Villa and Liverpool.

Rovers are one wide option short following the departure of Craig Conway after he rejected the offer of a new contract and chief executive Waggott confirmed the interest in Downing.

He said: “We have a relatively young squad and I think Tony will be looking at some experienced players.

“Obviously he has known Stewart for a while.

“There’s a lot of things happening at Middlesbrough regarding their manager, could it be Jonathan Woodgate, and if is then would Downing stay with him?

“If it’s not him, then who is it, does he want to keep him? If he leaves, where does he want to go?

“If he is going to be on the move then hopefully the relationship Tony and Mark (Venus) have with him, and him knowing them, might put us in a strong position.”

Downing played 40 times for Middlesbrough this season, scoring twice, featuring in both matches against Rovers.

But he was one of four players not to be offered a new deal by the club, who are without a manager after the sacking of Tony Pulis, and is free to speak to other clubs.