Chelsea have been playing exceptionally well over the last couple of months and reportedly ready to bid £35 million for Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain, in the forthcoming summer transfer window, according to a report in the Sun.

The Argentinean forward has been targetted by the Blues' billionaire owner Roman Abramovich, who sees him as an ideal long-term replacement for Ivorian striker Didier Drogba who will leave Stamford Bridge in the summer, according to a number of reports.

"Higuain is top of the shopping list. He has a phenomenal goal scoring record for Real and for Argentina but he helps make lots of goals too. He would be perfect for us, the sort of player who would thrive in the Premier League," a Chelsea source was quoted as saying. The player has scored 25 times in 51 appearances for the Spanish giants this season.

However, Chelsea will reportedly face competition from big-spending local rivals Manchester City, who also have eyes on the 24 year old.

Meanwhile, in news that could help City clinch the deal, Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho - who saw his side get knocked out of the semi-finals of the Champions League this year, on penalties, to German club Bayern Munich - is rumoured to be interested in Higuain's Argentine compatriot Sergio Agüero. The City striker has had a stunning debut season in the Premier League, scoring 29 times in 36 appearances for the Citizens.

It could be that a swap deal is in the works, involving the two Argentines. According to an earlier report in IBTimes UK, Real Madrid are willing to offer Higuain along with £8.5 million in exchange for 24 year old Agüero.

Mancini will, however, be wary of giving up Agüero after his performances this season and particularly since he was signed from Spanish side Atletico Madrid for a fee of £38 million and has been instrumental in City's relatively successful season so far.

As far as Higuain is concerned, the young forward has had a slightly difficult time in the Spanish capital, with French striker Karim Benzema getting the nod to partner Portuguese winger Cristiano Ronaldo up front more often than not. Higuain, therefore, could be interested in a move to get regular playing time.