The odds on Everton striker Romelu Lukaku leaving have been cut further after he confirmed that he will not be changing his mind over rejecting a new contract.
The Toffees were close to finalising a contract for Lukaku, but the two parties could not agree over one aspect of the deal which was a release clause. Whilst Everton wanted one close to £100million, Lukaku and his people wanted way less than that and nearer £70million.
Lukaku stated earlier this month he had turned the deal down and would not be coming back to the table and he has reiterated that the decision will not be changing anytime soon.
“The decision has already been made so I can’t talk about that,” said Lukaku whilst on international duty – confirming that his decision was also built on ambition, and he clearly feels Everton will not be able to match his.
“There is nothing wrong with ambition. You have to embrace it and where you are as a footballer.”
“There is nothing wrong with ambition. You have to embrace it and where you are as a footballer.
“I’ve made a long way until now but the road is still long and I know I have to improve and get better. I want to help Everton as much as I can, as well as the national team. I think a lot of stuff can be achieved.
“Sometimes people will mistake things that I say but it’s just ambition that I have; I want to win titles and trophies and I don’t think people should take that as arrogance – people should embrace it.
“This is what footballers need to achieve if they want to become the best, and I think young kids need to learn that too.”
The odds now suggest that Chelsea and Manchester United are favourites with both ranked at 3/1 to be Lukaku’s next club.
Our Football Insider Graeme Bailey admits that Everton have been left reeling by Lukaku’s stance.
“Everton are gutted, I am told that they firmly believed the deal was in place – and now they have seen him admit publicly that he wants to leave,” said Bailey.
“He is not going to be signing a new deal, that is clear and no matter what, Everton are waking up to the prospect of losing the Premier League’s top-scorer. They don’t want to sell but Lukaku has made it clear to the club he wants out.”