- 13 hours ago
Chelsea play HARDBALL over Lukaku transfer
The Belgian is the subject of intense interest from the Italian giants with whom he spent the last season on loan. Lukaku wants to stay in Milan, but striking a deal is proving tough. Inter are not willing to meet the Blues' asking price as financial issues continue to plague the club.
Chelsea, meanwhile, are keen to get the 30-year-old off the books and add him to their long list of outgoings as soon as possible. Lukaku returned to Stamford Bridge in 2021 in a deal worth a staggering €115 million, but he was unable to recapture the form he showed at Inter the season prior.
Having temporarily returned to his Italian stomping ground last term, Lukaku again experienced an up-and-down campaign, occasionally performing at the level expected of a high-profile striker but also struggling to consistently live up to the billing. Nevertheless, the Nerrazzuri want to keep the Belgian around.
Chelsea reject latest offer
According to the Evening Standard's Nizaar Kinsella, Chelsea have rejected Inter's latest approach for Lukaku. The Blues continue to hold out for at least £40m (€47m), a fee the Italian giants are not able to meet, at least in one bulk sum.
Inter were said to be prepared to offer a loan with an obligation to buy with the latter to be paid in instalments. Chelsea, however, have no intention to loan the player and the situation appears to have reached an impasse.
New Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino spoke on the matter during his first press conference: "The situation, all of the parts, know what we think. I think in that case he [Lukaku] needs to come back on the 12th or 13th to be in the squad to start pre-season. Like all of the players, when they arrive they come to my office to say hello. If he is still a Chelsea player."