Shanghai target Chelsea and Stoke players to join Anelka in China

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Shanghai Shenhua are not content in simply signing Nicolas Anelka from the Premier League and have set their sights on another double swoop in the English top flight.

The Chinese club have shown their big dreams through not only signing Anelka of late, but also appointing former Fulham boss Jean Tigana.

With the club still seeking their first Chinese Super League success having finished second on three previous occasions, these new recruits do not spell the end of their ambition.

Shanghai are keen to rekindle Anelka’s former Chelsea partnership with Didier Drogba and with the Ivory Coast striker out of contract in the summer, they may be able to offer the most lucrative package.

Drogba was primarily liked with a switch to China in January which never materialised, but with Gonzalo Higuain being heavily touted as a Chelsea summer target and Andre Villas-Boas being keen to bring his own flavour to the squad, his days could be numbered at Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, Shanghai will be able to offer a big salary at least on par with the £200,000 a week that Anelka is reportedly making, alongside giving Drogba the two-year package that he wants.

The other Shanghai target is slightly more surprising, but is perhaps more likely to go through.

Matthew Upson has struggled to make an impact at Stoke since signing from relegated West Ham in the summer and has only managed five Premier League appearances for his new club.

With Jonathan Woodgate also going a prolonged spell without picking up another injury, Upson may be deemed surplus to requirements at the Britannia Stadium, especially as he is already behind Ryan Shawcross and Robert Huth.

However, Drogba will still be critical to Chelsea’s hopes of finishing in the top four this season and this can be backed at 4/9 in the Premier League odds.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.