OXFORD United have given up hope of bringing Marcus Browne back before tomorrow's transfer deadline.

The forward appeared to be available earlier this month, with Middlesbrough boss Neil Warnock saying in an ideal world he would get out and play games.

That prompted the U's to make it clear they would be interested in re-signing the 22-year-old on loan for a third time.

But the picture has now changed, possibly due to an injury to Ashley Fletcher, which means United have been told Browne will be staying on Teesside.

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It forces head coach Karl Robinson to look elsewhere if he is going to strengthen the squad before tomorrow's 5pm deadline.

He said: "Maybe Marcus is playing well in training and they’ve looked at it as an opportunity to keep him around the building.

"Neil Warnock is much better at this job than I am and I think he knows what he’s doing. I’ll leave that to him.

"We just know he’s not available, that’s come from the football club and the staff.

"If he becomes successful there it will be something we’ll be proud of because he’s a good kid."