Inter Milan’s ‘preference’ emerges as Chelsea push to seal Romelu Lukaku transfer


Chelsea want to sign Romelu Lukaku. However, it’s been claimed Inter Milan would prefer to sell fringe players this summer instead of the Belgium international. And that’s a blow to Thomas Tuchel’s side, who want to re-sign the striker a decade after he first moved to Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea won the race for Lukaku back in the summer transfer window of 2011, bringing the hitman in from Anderlecht.

But he struggled during his time at Stamford Bridge, failing to score from 15 appearances for the club.

Since then Lukaku has rebuilt his career, impressing at Everton and Inter Milan with a mixed spell at Manchester United in between.

On Monday, it emerged Chelsea had seen a bid for their former forward rejected by Inter – who would want at least £100million to consider selling up.

And Sky Sports’ Michael Bridge has claimed the Serie A giants would prefer to jettison fringe players instead of Lukaku as they look to balance the books in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.

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“I have to say at the moment it’s not likely,” he told Sky Sports. “The key here is that Romelu Lukaku isn’t pushing for a move.

“He doesn’t want to leave Inter Milan, he’s happy even after the departure of Antonio Conte in the summer.

“There are problems with Inter Milan, they need to cut their wage bill they need to sell players.

“But their preference is to sell fringe players, they’ve got a very big squad they don’t want to sell their best player.

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“They’ve just won Serie A, they’ve just ended Juventus’ dominance, they’re champions. Simone Inzaghi is the manager, the head coach, but all we’re being told by our colleagues in Italy is that Lukaku is happy.”

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Lukaku isn’t the only striker Chelsea are targeting.

Their preference would be to sign Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund, but the Norway international isn’t on the market this summer.

Dortmund have already lost Jadon Sancho to Manchester United and don’t want two massive departures in the same window, too.

Chelsea also have interest in Harry Kane, who failed to show up for Tottenham training on Monday.

But their prospects of landing the England international appear remote given the rivalry between the two teams.

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Chelsea have already lost Olivier Giroud this summer, selling the France international to AC Milan to make room for Lukaku.

And Tammy Abraham could be next, with the England international linked with Arsenal and West Ham amid uncertainty over his long-term future.

Speaking in July, former Liverpool star Peter Crouch urged Lukaku to consider a move back to Chelsea.

He told Paddy Power: “Romelu Lukaku has to be a target for Premier League clubs, without a doubt.

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“Look at the money you’d have to spend to get Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappe or even Harry Kane. It would cost a lot less to get Lukaku, yet he’s a banker for Premier League goals.

“He gets better every season and I wouldn’t bet against him winning the Euros Golden Boot now. Belgium are a top side and he’s going to get more goals.

“The obvious English destination is Chelsea, though. He’d fit in there. They’ve got pace, which suits him, willing runners, and they’d have an abundance of ability around him.

“He’s been at Chelsea before and I think he’s got something to prove there. I could see him being a good fit under Thomas Tuchel.

“Similarly, if Chelsea sign Erling Haaland, they are title contenders without a doubt. They’ve got a squad capable of a title challenge and will have confidence after winning the Champions League.

“If they get Haaland, they’re 100% in it. It’s going to be a fascinating season to see if anyone can topple Manchester City.”





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