Chelsea set to sign Croatia forward Andrej Kramaric for £7m

• Blues will immediately loan the forward to Vitesse Arnhem
• Leicester City had trumped Chelsea with offer of £7.8m
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Chelsea are poised to secure the signing of the Croatia forward Andrej Kramaric for around £7m, subject to a medical, with the player to be loaned immediately to Vitesse Arnhem.

The striker, who has scored twice in four appearances for the national squad, has been prolific for HNK Rijeka with 28 goals in all competitions this term and will join a trio of Chelsea players – Wallace, Bertrand Traoré and Josh McEachran – already on loan at Vitesse, with whom the Premier League leaders enjoy a close relationship.

The 23-year-old, who had also interested Juventus, will be contracted until 2019 and has been secured with one eye on the reality that Didier Drogba’s current deal at the club is due to expire in the summer. The Rijeka sporting director, Ivan Mance, had admitted earlier this week that the Croatian club had received an offer. “I can confirm that our office received a formal offer by London’s Chelsea,” he said.

Confirmation of his move to Stamford Bridge will represent a blow for Leicester City, who had hoped to sign Kramaric permanently themselves and, at £7.8m, had trumped Chelsea with their offer to Rijeka. Once Chelsea’s interest emerged, the Premier League’s bottom club’s aspirations had switched to securing the player on loan for the rest of the campaign, though even those have now been dashed with Vitesse the preferred destination.