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Forget Toni Kroos -- here's the Bayern star Chelsea should really be after

Lars Baron

Toni Kroos is the man of the moment, transfer rumours-wise -- the 24-year-old is embroiled in a contract dispute with Bayern Munich that has Europe's top teams scrambling to woo him. He's a brilliant player, but as good as he is, he doesn't solve anything like Chelsea's biggest need. But he's not the only one unhappy at Pep Guardiola's Bayern Munich: Mario Mandzukic is having it even worse. And unlike Kroos, he's a man the Blues should be extremely interested in.

As Zlatan Ibrahimovic showed during his bizarre season at the Camp Nou, Pep and 'strikers' are more or less incapable of coexisting, and Mandzukic, though good, is no Ibrahimovic. Bayern have been experimenting with using summer signing Mario Goetze as their centre forward, leaving Mandzukic out in the cold. Rumours of training troubles are starting to percolate. Robert Lewandowski is being brought in from BVB this summer. The signs are pretty bad for the 27-year-old getting much more time at the Allianz.

This is interesting because Mandzukic is an excellent, versatile, centre forward. Signed from Wolfsburg in the wake of Bayern's penalty shootout loss in the 2012 Champions League final (a pretty good day, if I say so myself), the Croatian was one of the major driving forces in their more successful followup campaign. He's a clear upgrade on Chelsea's striking trio, he'll help more next season than the likes of Romelu Lukaku would... and I have no idea why he hasn't been linked to us yet.

But if we're going to talk about Chelsea acquiring Bayern castoffs, Mario Mandzukic is your man.

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