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Report: Chelsea and Bayern Munich talking surprise swap deal

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Stuart Franklin

Although we're very much on Diego Costa watch on the striker front, there's some intriguing news from Germany that might mean we don't chase after the Atletico Madrid centre forward after all. With the impending arrival of Robert Lewandowski at the Allianz Arena, Mario Mandzukic is going to be even more out of favour than he was before, and that could mean good news for any team in the hunt for a new striker. Which would be us:

Piraux is citing Bild, who claim that Mandzukic's representatives have already met with Chelsea and that this deal is very close to completion. That's not to say it's going to happen -- Bild aren't always accurate and swap deals virtually never happen in real life -- but this is a very interesting idea. Using Mandzukic as a makeweight in a David Luiz deal would have several benefits for Chelsea, the most important of which is the fact that there would be no transfer fee included in Manzukic's Financial Fair Play hit.

But is he good enough? I think so. He's the sort of striker who can excel against packed defences, using strength and aerial ability to open teams up, and that's where we've been most lacking since Didier Drogba moved on. I don't think this move would be in addition to Diego Costa -- for me it's one of the other, and I'd probably choose Mandzukic given the ~€70 million financial swing between the two, even if it does come along with the need to spend money on a midfielder.

Oh, and speaking of midfielders, if I'm Chelsea this is my counteroffer: David Luiz and €20 million for Javi Martinez and Mario Mandzukic. A boy can always dream, right?