Chelsea are not against sanctioning a premature exit for Romelu Lukaku despite his recent return to the fold, with one European giant joining the race, according to reports.
Lukaku re-joined Chelsea from Inter Milan after winning the Serie A title in 2021. In making the move back to Stamford Bridge, he became Chelsea’s record signing. Having never found the net in his first spell with the club, the Belgian has hit seven goals from 19 games so far this time around.
After firing in 30 goals for Inter last season, there is a feeling there is more to come from Lukaku. But his situation took a turn recently when he admitted he was “not happy” at Chelsea. He blamed Thomas Tuchel’s system and reflected “it was not the right time” to have left Inter.
Tuchel responded by dropping the striker, but the incident has since been brushed under the carpet. Lukaku came back into the action for a Carabao Cup win over Tottenham last week.
It seems he is ready to be reintegrated after apologising. However, he is still facing an uncertain future. According to El Nacional, Roman Abramovich is “considering his sale”.
The Chelsea chief would only do so if they can recoup a fee close to the €115m they invested in him over the summer. That would rule out any hopes Lukaku has of returning to Inter.
But there is one suitor willing to spend big for the Belgian, even if not quite to the same degree Chelsea did a few months back.
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The report claims Paris Saint-Germain are ready to bid €90m for Lukaku. He could then become their replacement for Kylian Mbappe; the Frenchman seems destined to leave on a free transfer at the end of the season for Real Madrid.
It remains unclear whether Chelsea would accept PSG’s offer for Lukaku. The former Manchester United forward has a contract until 2026.
But El Nacional suggest – somewhat surprisingly, even in this context – that he is “determined” to leave already. They also predict PSG could “seduce” him by teaming him up with the likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar.
Chelsea already know Lukaku successor
What’s more, the report claims Chelsea would be looking at Borussia Dortmund superstar Erling Haaland as their potential replacement for Lukaku.
Haaland has a €75m release clause in his Dortmund contract in the summer. It makes him an appealing target for many of Europe’s elite clubs.
Chelsea are keen to keep spending big to reinforce their status among such sides. They will face plenty of competition for Haaland, but could try their luck.
The Blues think the Norwegian is the “ideal successor” to Lukaku. Indeed, with 76 goals from as many games for Dortmund to his name, it is easy to see why.
But there have already been reports that Haaland would prefer a move to Barcelona if it is possible.
Due to their financial difficulties, though, there could yet be a chance for Chelsea to beat them to Haaland’s signature.
For now, they will be continuing with Lukaku until any concrete offers arrive.