European champions Chelsea are reportedly set to resume their efforts to sign German forward Andre Schürrle from Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen. Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo sees Schürrle as a replacement for Ivorian striker Didier Drogba, who left Stamford Bridge on a free transfer earlier in the summer.
Chelsea have had a busy transfer period so far, signing Lille's Belgian playmaker Eden Hazard, Werder Bremen's midfielder Marko Marin and Brazilian Oscar from Internacional, with total spending in the region of £70m.
However, despite all the transfers in, the Blues are still short of attacking talent, with Fernando Torres of Spain and England international Daniel Sturridge the only recognised first-team strikers on the roster. Drogba and fellow Ivorian Salomon Kalou's departures have yet to be offset, despite Drogba's backing for the misfiring Torres as the club's new lead striker.
The Mirror reports Chelsea have offered Bayer Leverkusen £25m for Schürrle, who played for Germany during both the qualifiers for the 2012 European Championships and the tournament itself. The German club has already rejected one offer from Chelsea.
"We have received a very concrete offer from Chelsea for Andre Schürrle worth over €20m. Both clubs shoved figures back and forth for a while, but we eventually opted to hold on to Andre," Wolfgang Holzhauser, the club's chief executive, said. Meanwhile, Schürrle himself has admitted he would like to join the west London club.
"I don't think you would find any player in the Bundesliga who would say that they would not at all be interested," the 21-year-old explained, "Chelsea would have been very interesting for me. You don't get a chance like that very often in your life."
Chelsea have confirmed they want at least two more new faces in their squad before the transfer window ends and one of these is likely to be a defensive option to replace Portuguese right back Jose Bosingwa, who left on a free transfer earlier in the summer.
"The situation is that we are still looking to potentially strengthen the side," Ron Gourlay, the chief executive, explained. "The manager feels there are maybe one or two areas where we may need to strengthen. We are already very strong and have a big squad, but if we feel there are players out there who can strengthen the side in the right position, we will continue to do so but it has to be the right player at the right cost, because both these things are very important."