€8m 27 goals in 51 games striker set for second crack at Premier League

Former Manchester United striker Mame Biram Diouf is reportedly set to refuse a new deal at Hannover 96 ... with Stoke City waiting.

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has already seen himself linked with an old-boy in his quest for a new striker this season with Roque Santa Cruz continually linked with signing on at the Britannia Stadium after his release by Manchester City.

In the end nothing came of that interest as the Paraguayan decided to sign on permanently with Malaga; where he had an excellent loan spell last season.

It seems that strikers are high on the agenda then for Hughes and he is now being linked with a former Blackburn Rovers striker of a post-Hughes era.

When Mame Biram Diouf signed for Manchester United in 2009 he was considered a star of the future, one to watch and potential goalscoring sensation.

But as many have discovered over the years the former Molde FK striker struggled to make his mark at Old Trafford.

He was therefore given the opportunity to shine on a loan spell at Blackburn.

After that he returned to United and was subsequently flogged to Hannover 96; where he has been a revelation.

This summer however the club have had to deal with plenty of interest in the player with Stoke City now the latest team said to be keen on a deal for the 25-year-old.

His current contract in Germany expires in 2014 and the club are said to be talking over an extension with the player; and recently it looked as if he was ready to commit himself to the club.

But Stoke City’s interest appears to be a game-changer. Hannover supremo Dirk Dufner was speaking to Bild yesterday when he suggested that Diouf could be on his way out of the club this summer:

"He has brought an offer from Stoke; I do not know what he wants here."

It is believed that Diouf will not sign an extension with the club and will be available for €8 million as the club look to flog him rather than lose him for free this time next year.

This should be music to the ears of Stoke fans. Diouf has scored 27 goals in 51 games since playing in Germany and if he could bring that sort of form to the Premier League he could be the difference between safety and relegation in a transitional year for The Potters.

image: © apasciuto

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch