Chelsea are at risk of missing out on the acquisition of prolific striker Andrej Kramaric after Leicester City tabled a £7.9 million bid for the HNK Rijeka star.
According to the Daily Mail, the Blues are believed to have already reached a pre-contract agreement with the Croatia international, but now their plans to bring the player to west London in January have been cast into doubt following a surprise offer from the Foxes.
Nigel Pearson is on the lookout for attacking reinforcements at the King Power Stadium and is hoping to steal a march on Jose Mourinho after making an enquiry for the 23-year-old talisman.
With 21 goals in just 16 appearances in 2014/15, Kramaric is rapidly building a reputation as one of the most prolific marksman in all of Europe at the moment, and his fine form is reflected by the widespread interest in his signature.
Four clubs in Italy - AC Milan, Inter, Juventus and Atalanta - have all tried and failed to entice the talented star to Serie 'A', with it believed he is holding out for a lucrative move to England's top-flight, though Rijeka will only sell to the highest bidder.
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Kramaric is understood to have just six months remaining on his current contract, so his club are conscious of not losing their prized asset for nothing next summer, and are seeking a fee of around £8 million for his services in the New Year.
Chelsea see the front-man as a possible replacement for Didier Drogba at Stamford Bridge, as the 36-year-old will be out of contract himself at the end of the season, but the Croatian is likely to find regular action difficult to come by with competition for a starting spot from Diego Costa and Loic Remy.
Leicester would therefore probably present a more attractive option for Kramaric, as he is likely to get significantly more playing time with the relegation-strugglers.
Tottenham Hotspur have also been mooted as admirers of the emerging talent, but like Chelsea there would be increased competition for places in Mauricio Pochettino's squad at White Hart Lane with Emmanuel Adebayor, Roberto Soldado and Harry Kane already fighting for inclusion.