Michael Could Be Tonge-inc For Hill

Last updated : 23 January 2012 By Rob Miles (BarnsleyBoy)

Stoke City midfielder Michael Tonge is set to secure a loan move to Oakwell as Reds boss Keith Hill looks to bolster his depleted midfield.

Hill has lost two key players in recent weeks with Jacob Butterfield’s season being ended by a knee ligament injury whilst Leicester swooped to take Danny Drinkwater last week, thus curtailing his loan period with The Reds.

This has seen Hill step up his January recruitment drive and it is believed he is close to typing up a short term move for ex Sheffield United man Tonge.

The 28 year old started his career at Bramall Lane and was a revelation for the Blades, scoring 21 goals in 262 games whilst helping them to the Division One Play-Off Final in 2003 and then finally to Premier League promotion in 2006.

These sterling performances earned the former England Under 21 international a £2m move to Stoke in 2008, but he has found it hard to break into Tony Pulis’ side, making just 12 appearances in his four years at the Britannia Stadium- his last one in a 2-0 FA Cup win over Cardiff 12 months ago. During this time Tonge has spent time out on loan at Preston and Derby and now could be set to return to South Yorkshire to help Hill push his side towards the top half of the Championship table.