Premier League • England

Romelu Lukaku future latest: Striker makes Inter feelings clear – but Chelsea demand put transfer in doubt

Romelu Lukaku, Chelsea striker, during Premier League game v West Ham

Romelu Lukaku has reportedly made it clear to Chelsea that he wishes to return to Inter Milan this summer – but his chances of making the move look fragile due to a big demand made by the Blues.

The Belgian striker returned to Stamford Bridge last summer, the Blues shelling out an eye-watering £97.5m. However, despite a bright start, he struggled to adjust to Thomas Tuchel’s style and often found himself left out of the starting line-up. That said, the striker still managed 15 goals in what was a stop-star season.

But 15 appearances off the bench tells you all you need to know about Lukaku’s prospects at Chelsea. And the striker has not been shy in making his feelings clear about his lack of game-time and regret at leaving Inter last summer.

Indeed, those comments landed him in a heap of hot water at Chelsea. And while Thomas Tuchel has done his best to lift the striker’s mood, it looks certain that his signing has not worked out well for anyone involved.

His frustration at Chelsea has even led to claims of a reunion with Antonio Conte at Tottenham.

That, though, is a move which looks highly unlikely with Lukaku now reportedly making clear his wish to return to Inter.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Lukaku has made it clear to Chelsea he wants to leave this summer and rejoin the Nerazzurri.

And so desperate is Lukaku to make the switch, that he is seemingly willing to take a 50% pay cut to make it happen.

However, facilitating such a move looks tricky to say the least.

The 29-year-old still has four years left on his Chelsea deal and the Blues would require an enormous fee to let him depart.

Chelsea seeking massive loan fee for Romelu Lukaku

But with Inter Milan in all kinds of financial mess, they are under pressure to reduce their wage bill first.

As a workaround, the Telegraph claims Chelsea are offering Inter the chance to re-sign Lukaku on loan.

However, Chelsea are reportedly demanding £20m for a season’s loan – with even that fee seemingly beyond Simone Inzahgi’s side.

Sky Sports claims talks will continue in an effort to reach a compromise. And they state Lukaku’s lawyer is due to meet with Inter officials on Tuesday to try and come to an agreement.

Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta says his side are keen to re-sign Lukaku but are in “no rush” to secure his signature.

Chelsea need to reach compromise

Chelsea have blundered badly re-signing Lukaku. He clearly did not fit into Tuchel’s way of playing and his signing always smacked of one made by the board rather than the manager.

Romelu Lukaku celebrates his second Chelsea goal against Wolves

At £97.5m, Lukaku’s transfer is second only to the £100m British record fee Manchester City paid for Jack Grealish. It also puts the Lukaku deal seventh on the all-time global top transfers list.

Given his age as well – 28 at the time – Chelsea were mad to hand the attacker a mammoth five-year deal.

And while Lukaku always looks capable of a goal, his game is clearly not suited to Chelsea’s style.

Quite how they move him on though looks difficult to say the least.

Inter Milan want Romelu Lukaku back on loan from Chelsea

Inter Milan want Romelu Lukaku back on loan from Chelsea

Inter Milan want to sign Romelu Lukaku on loan from Chelsea this summer with Lukaku talking to lawyers

The Blues, understandably, do not want to take such a massive financial hit. Not that Inter could afford his signature anyway.

And you can well understand why, given the fee paid, why Chelsea want such an enormous loan fee for Romelu Lukaku.

The situation is a messy one for Chelsea and they clearly need a resolution before the new season gets underway.

Christian Pulisic, meanwhile, has also made it clear to Tuchel that he too wants more game-time in the 2022/23 season.