Romelu Lukaku’s boyhood tryst with Chelsea, never brought into fruition due to loan spells and later success with the likes of Everton, could be rekindled. The London side are allegedly keen on singing the Inter striker and the Serie A outfit are purportedly considering a sale as well.
Here’s what could occur if the Blues secure the marquee transfer.
1. City’s Closest Rival
Pep Guardiola’s hold over the Premier League title could see a massive challenge if the Champions League winner secure Lukaku’s services.
A proven goalscorer with a clinical presence in the box, the creative and technically sound frontline of Chelsea’s squad will benefit further. In this respect, even the rebuild attempts of Ole Gunnar Solskjær at Manchester United and Jurgen Klopp’s hopefully resurgent Liverpool will pale in terms of squad ability when compared to Thomas Tuchel’s adept men.
This is bound to set the stage for an exciting title race.
2. Unfinished Business
His heroics in Italy are bound to be a point of herald. However, a return to Premier League football will be an opportunity for the Belgian striker to prove some of his doubters wrong on at least two fronts.
The United tryst left many labelling him to be lazy and unproven when it comes to top-flight football. His numbers at Everton were thus shrugged aside. Likewise, inability to break though the senior ranks at Chelsea despite numerous promising loan spells also saw him not given a chance to prove his mettle at Stamford Bridge.
As such, a return to Chelsea would permit him to settle that score as well as show his critics as to why he may be suited to the top echelons of Premier League football after all.
3. United Sell-On Clause
Interestingly enough, while Solskjær and company won’t directly benefit from a top striker joining a title contender, the club as a whole could receive a small joy elsewhere.
United inserted a sell-on clause in Lukaku’s transfer terms when he departed the club back in 2019 to join Inter. As such, any sale to Chelsea, which is likely to be a big-money affair, will also see United make a small amount of the transfer fee to their name.
Not a bad piece of business and would add to a transfer window where the Red Devils have already engineered to arguable bargains in the purchases of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane.
4. Way for Haaland Clear
Chelsea were highly touted to acquire Erling Braut Haaland this transfer window. The same was also said for Manchester City who were desperate to add a big name striker to their roster following the departure of Sergio Aguero.
However, with Lukaku being possibly pried away by Chelsea and City instead eager to make Harry Kane their own, the two financial giants will, on paper at least, be out of any race to acquire the promising Haaland.
This is good news for United who will see their path clear to trying to attract the Norwegian striker to Old Trafford next season. Therein, a Lukaku return could facilitate the reunion of Sancho and Haaland in the long run.
5. Big Loss for Inter
Inter are in a bit of a soup. Financial uncertainties and disagreement over transfer business saw them lose out on the managerial expertise of Antonio Conte. Further, Achraf Hakimi’s swoop by PSG earlier in the window likewise signalled a massive loss. Now with Lukaku potentially on the move as well, the giants of Italian football are slowly losing all their stars.
At this rate, it is paramount for the club to try and acquire attractive replacements for these key players. Pending that, Simone Inzaghi could be looking at a top 4 struggle rather than a title run.
6. Abraham and Werner’s Futures In Doubt
Any arrival of Lukaku at Stamford Bridge will cause domino effects in their existing roster. Most noticeably, Timo Werner’s spot in the middle of the attack would be rendered unnecessary given the goal-scoring prowess that the Belgian would bring to the side.
As such, the German star would have to look for a role either on the flanks or content himself with spending time on the bench. Likewise, Tammy Abraham could also begin to envision a reality away from Chelsea.
All in all, the Premier League could welcome back a player who has improved considerably since his last outing in England. Just how big of a difference could Lukaku’s potential arrival make to the title race?