Chelsea are ready to smash their transfer record to re-sign Romelu Lukaku this summer.
Lukaku has confirmed to Everton that he will not entertain signing a new deal at Goodison Park as he feels he is ready to move onto the next level.
Football INDEX Talk – At £4.05 Romelu Lukaku is trading in the top-ten, but what a player he is. With a big move this summer, surely still a worthy buy.
The 23-year-old is currently the top-scorer in the Premier League and had at one point been close to agreeing fresh terms, but the two sides fell out of over a release clause – with Everton wanting it to be worth over £100million, something which the player would not agree too.
“He [Lukaku] told me he won’t sign a new contract,” Everton boss Ronald Koeman confirmed.
Sources close to Chelsea have confirmed to me that Lukaku is very much in their sights and they are ready to make a move for the Belgian star and bring him back to Stamford Birdge – and they realise that they will have to smash their transfer record to do so, with a fee of around £70million expected.
Chelsea have re-signed players before like Nemanja Matic and David Luiz, and they will move for Lukaku – with his camp making no secret of his desire to link back up with the London giants.
Lukaku’s camp are touching base, as you would expect, with clubs around Europe – but Chelsea are very much the favoured option for the player – who wants to make an impact at the club he feels he was never given a fair chance at previously.
Goals in the Premier League this season:
Romelu Lukaku (23)
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 13, 2017
Lukaku first joined Chelsea for £10million back in 2011, but he only ever played less than a dozen times for the club – instead spending time out on loan firstly with West Bromwich Albion and then with Everton, whom he joined on a permanent basis in 2014.
Now after nearly four-years on Merseyside, Lukaku is ready to move on and I understand he has made it clear to his representatives that Chelsea is his first option.
I understand Chelsea could bring in at least two new forwards this summer. As well as Lukaku they are still interested in Swansea’s Fernando Llorente – as coach Antonio Conte is a huge fan of from their time together at Juventus.
Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata is another option who they would pursue, if as expected Real Madrid make him available for transfer this summer, whilst Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez is also a possible option.
At least one of Chelsea’s current forwards will be moved on, with Michy Batshuayi likely to be first out of the door – knowing that he does not feature in Conte’s plans.
Chelsea were also hugely upset by Diego Costa’s stance in January and have made it clear to him that they will not allow him to disturb the squad in such a manner again.
We spoke to SkyBet’s Dale Tempest about the market surrounding Lukaku, and they believe at the moment he is still likely to remain at Everton.
“Lukaku has had an amazing season with 23 goals an odds-on to take the Premier League top-scorer award,” Tempest told TheGamblingTimes.com.
“He is genuinely a class act that you would pay £80 to £100million for and you expect that is what Everton will want.
“The fact that he is still 11/10 to stay at Goodison suggests no top club is yet ready to make that commitment.”