Mario Mandzukic
Mario Mandzukic Reuters

Atletico Madrid have verbally agreed terms with Bayer Munich over the signing of coveted striker Mario Mandzukic, the German club have confirmed.

Arsenal and Chelsea had been linked with the Croatian international's services in recent months with both Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho on the lookout for a striker.

However, the La Liga champions have finally won the race to sign Mandzukic having fended off interest from the Premier League giants, reaching a verbal agreement with the striker for a reported fee of £18m.

Having lost both Diego Costa and David Villa this summer, Atletico were desperately looking to bolster their attack and are also still in the hunt for Manchester City striker Alvaro Negredo and Argentinian wonderkid Juan Iturbe.

Bayern Sporting director Matthias Sammer confirmed the deal for Mandzukic. "We haven't signed anything yet but there is a verbal agreement between both Bayern and Atletico Madrid as well as between Mario and Atletico."

Despite finishing as Bayern's top scorer for the past two Bundesliga campaigns, the Croatian international expressed his desire to leave this summer after the club announced the signing of striker Robert Lewandowski earlier in the year.

"I met with (Bayern chairman) Karl Heinz Rummenigge before the cup final and told him I wanted to leave the club. I've had a fantastic time at Bayern. It's a great club and I never thought I'd want to leave, and especially not at this point in time." Mandzukic said earlier this year.

"But, let's be honest, I cannot play to my strengths under Guardiola's style - no matter how hard I try. I realised that after the 1-0 defeat by Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final first leg and, that being the case, it's best for all parties that we go our separate ways."

Arsenal and Chelsea were reportedly fighting for his services since then. However, the Gunners have finally decided to make a move for Barcelona star Alexis Sanchez while the Blues are still considering Fernando Torres and Demba Ba's future before signing another forward – having already completed the signing of Diego Costa.