Chelsea and Manchester City to battle over £30m Jamie Vardy

Chelsea's interest more firm than City's at the moment

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The Independent Football

Chelsea and Manchester City will fight over Jamie Vardy in January, according to reports.

Premier League leaders Leicester City will be desperate to keep the striker, who has 15 league goals this season, and will offer him a new contract and pay rise, but Chelsea are still likely to make an offer for the 28-year-old.

According to the Daily Telegraph Chelsea hold a much stronger interest for Vardy, rated at around £30million, than City do. 

Sergio Aguero's constant injury setbacks mean City could target another striker in January. Wilfried Bony and youngster Kelechi Iheanacho are the only other strikers in the squad, and the latter had to be left out of the club's reduced 21-man squad for the Champions League group stages.

Vardy would be eligible for that competition and would boost the club's homegrown quota. 

Chelsea have been woeful in front of goal this season, with Diego Costa their top Premier League goalscorer with only three goals. Radamel Falcao has continued the bad form he showed at Manchester United, while the injury-prone Loic Remy never really got a chance under Jose Mourinho.

Claudio Ranieri will be desperate to keep both Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, but the former non-League striker will know that January represents his best chance of moving to a Champions League club.