Bayern Munich star Mario Mandzukic is close to completing a £17.5million move to Atletico Madrid, crushing Arsenal’s and Chelsea’s hopes of signing the striker, according to German newspaper Bild.
Reports from Germany claim that the Croatian forward will sign a five year deal with the La Liga champions.
Mandzukic had two successful seasons with Bayern Munich but the arrival of Borussia Dortmund’s Robert Lewandowski forced the 28-year-old to consider his options.
The former Wolfsburg star expressed his desire to leave the Allianz Arena before the World Cup, with Pep Guardiola’s tactics not curtailed to his strengths.
He told Croatian paper Sportske Novosti: “’I met (Bayern chairman) Karl Heinz Rummenigge before the (German) 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.
“But, let’s be honest, I cannot play to my strengths under Guardiola’s style – no matter how hard I try.”
Although not a fan of his manager’s tactics, Mandzukic still managed an impressive 26 goals in 48 games last season, which has alerted Atletico Madrid as the perfect replacement for Chelsea-bound Diego Costa.