Can Chelsea lure Romelu Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge?
According to reports, Chelsea are in hot pursuit of Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku. Of course, as most of you will recall, the 28-year-old was once on the pay roll at Stamford Bridge, enduring a couple of loan spells at the likes of West Bromwich Albion and Everton, before joining the Toffees on a permanent basis without much of a crack at first-team football in west London.
It’s a familiar, yet frustrating story to how things often play at the Bridge. After all, Lukaku isn’t the first youngster to be sold on by Chelsea only for the Blues to want them back in the future, and given some of the young prospects that they have let go this summer, like Marc Guéhi and Lewis Bate, we’re sure he won’t be the last.
However, it’s no surprise that they are interested in bringing Lukaku back to the Premier League this season. He has rejuvenated his career at the San Siro, scoring 64 times in 95 appearances in all competitions for Inter Milan, and is considered to be one of the best strikers in the world right now. it’s fair to say that if Chelsea want to challenge on all fronts in the upcoming 2021/22 campaign, where they are considered joint-second favourites to win the Premier League in the football odds, they could do with a striker with such goalscoring exploits.
There is a big risk factor in bringing Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge as well. Whilst he is Everton’s leading Premier League goalscorer with 68 goals, things didn’t exactly go to plan for the Belgian international at Manchester United, where he spent just two seasons before moving to Inter. And with the Bridge often branded a graveyard for strikers’ careers, Lukaku’s could be the latest name added to list (and for a second time!).
Luring the 28-year-old back to west London will be no easy feat, though. Lukaku has openly expressed how happy he is at Inter Milan, and after that terrible stint at Old Trafford, who can blame him for finally enjoying his football again?
“Yes, I am staying,” Lukaku told VTM back in June. “I feel good at Inter. I’ve already had contact with the man who normally becomes our new manager [Simone Inzaghi].
“Maybe I shouldn’t say that yet … but it was a very positive conversation. There’s also the challenge of doing it again [winning the league].”
Not only is Lukaku settled at the San Siro, but according to renowned football journalist Fabrizio Romano, the Inter Milan board have no interest in selling their talisman — who he claims the club’s hierarchy deem ‘untouchable.’
Inter have received an approach from Chelsea for Romelu Lukaku. Bid around €100m including Marcos Alonso as part of the negotiation. ???? #CFC
Inter board turned down the proposal as they want to keep Lukaku – they’ve always considered Romelu as “untouchable”. @DiMarzio ???????? #Inter
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 2, 2021
Chelsea’s recent bid of around €100m and left-back Marcos Alonso, which was their third attempt at trying to strike a deal with the Inter chiefs was turned down, and the question now is; what can Chelsea do to get them to change their mind?
Of course, the obvious answer is to go big or go home. But then, Lukaku is not Chelsea’s first choice option. They originally had their hearts set on Borussia Dortmund’s goalscoring machine Erling Håland, who looks to be staying at the Bundesliga side for another season.
At just 21 years of age, the Norwegian would arguably be the better option for Chelsea, and we’re sure the Stamford Bridge faithful would rather see Håland donning their club’s blue jersey than Lukaku.
Yes, if Chelsea want to become more favoured in the football predictions for this exciting upcoming season, they need to add some firepower to their attack, and if they do lodge bigger bids, then the Inter board could finally crack. But for upwards of £100+ million, is Lukaku really the right choice?