Friday’s transfer rumor roundup: Kroos, Pato to Chelsea; Townsend’s exit

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They may currently sit 14th in the Premier League, but Chelsea are still in the business of big spending in the transfer market. The latest superstar in their crosshairs? Real Madrid’s World Cup-winning midfielder Toni Kroos, for whom they’ve already tabled a bid of more than $55 million, according to the Daily Star.

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The Blues are also close to completing the signing of 26-year-old Brazilian striker Alexandre Pato from Brazilian side Corinthians, according to a report from ESPN Brazil. With Diego Costa currently injured, Loic Remy perhaps on the move away from Stamford Bridge, and no other cover at striker present, Chelsea might just be willing to meet Corinthians’ $14-million asking price.

Leicester City have entered the Saido Berahino sweepstakes, according to the Mirror, as Claudio Ranieri‘s side makes a push for a top-four finish this season. Berahino, who was denied a move to Tottenham Hotspur in the summer, is also once again being heavily linked with a move to north London. West Bromwich Albion still aren’t looking to sell, though.

[ MORE: Thursday’s transfer rumors | Wednesday | Tuesday | Monday ]

Andros Townsend will likely leave Tottenham either this month or in the summer. Newcastle United will reportedly bid $17 million for the 24-year-old winger in January, as the Magpies attempt to stave off relegation once again. Very much out of favor with manager Mauricio Pochettino, Townsend has made just three substitute appearances in the PL this season.

Outside the Premier League, AC Milan’s on-loan (Monaco) forward Stephen El Shaarawy is the target of “a big Italian club,” according to ESPN FC. The mystery Serie A side — Juventus? Roma? — would reportedly end the 23-year-old’s loan spell in France by signing the Italian international on a permanent transfer in January.