Rumour Mill: Norwich City close on Stoke striker Mame Biram Diouf, as Patrick Bamford loan link persists
- Credit: PA
Stoke City striker Mame Biram Diouf is being linked with a move to Norwich City ahead of Monday's transfer window deadline.
Talksport claim the former Manchester United and Blackburn Rovers forward is 'close' to joining the Canaries, as Potters boss Mark Hughes has decided the 28-year-old is surplus to his requirements.
The Senegal international has made 17 appearances for Stoke so far this season, starting nine of those matches and scoring three goals.
He has mainly featured as a substitute in recent months but did start last weekend's 3-0 loss at Leicester, as Hughes rested most of his first-choice players ahead of his side's Capital One Cup semi-final against Liverpool on Tuesday night.
The 6ft 1ins tall attacker scored 12 goals in 38 games last season after joining the Staffordshire club on a free transfer in the summer of 2014, after a profitable two years in Germany with Hannover, where he scored 32 goals in 68 matches.
Diouf rose to prominence with Norwegian side Molde, to earn his transfer to Manchester United. Limited involvement saw him spend time on loan back at Molde and then with Blackburn, for whom he scored a hat-trick against Norwich in the League Cup in August 2010.
The report also adds that City face competition from relegation rivals Newcastle United, who have grown frustrated in their pursuit of West Brom striker Saido Berahino.
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Meanwhile, the Daily Mail claim the Canaries are close to signing Chelsea striker Patrick Bamford on loan for the rest of the season.
The 22-year-old has returned to his parent club after a loan spell at Crystal Palace was brought to an early end, following nine appearances for the Eagles and no goals, with his six league appearances coming as a substitute.
Bamford remains highly rated however, having scored 19 goals in 44 matches for Championship side Middlesbrough last season.
Sky Bet have also slashed their odds on the England Under-21 international joining Norwich before Monday's 11pm deadline, to 5/1.