Premier League • England

Chelsea transfer explodes into life as plan changes to demolish key hold-up for ‘best possible striker’

Rasmus Hojlund and Romelu Lukaku

Chelsea could be about to receive a breakthrough in their attempts to offload Romelu Lukaku, whom Juventus now want to sign ‘at all costs’, according to an Italian report.

Lukaku spent last season on loan at Inter after struggling since his return to Chelsea. The expectation all along was that the Nerazzurri would try to extend his second spell with them beyond this summer.

However, in a shocking twist, Lukaku began negotiating with their arch-rivals, Juventus. It has put him in an awkward situation while he and Chelsea desperately try to go their separate ways.

After already sending several fringe players to Saudi Arabia, the Blues have a €50m (£43m) offer on the table from Al Hilal, which they would be willing to accept – unlike Lukaku. Therefore, they are urgently hoping Juventus can firm up their interest into something concrete.

But there has so far been a belief that Juventus will only be able to bid for Lukaku once they have offloaded Dusan Vlahovic. So far, many clubs have considered the Serbia international, but none have made him a priority.

Now, though, there has been a twist that could benefit Chelsea. According to Calciomercato, Juventus are now studying ways to bring in Lukaku – who is deemed to be the ‘best possible striker’ for coach Massimiliano Allegri – before getting rid of Vlahovic.

Juventus now want Lukaku on loan

The Serie A side are hoping to convince Chelsea to accept another loan exit for Lukaku, even though they would have been willing to pay €40m (£34.4m) now if it wasn’t for Vlahovic being stuck in Turin.

Any loan proposal by Juventus would likely have to contain some kind of clause for a permanent transfer to convince Chelsea, who still have the 30-year-old under contract until 2026.

They are optimistic that their new formula can accelerate a move that everyone wants to go through. Lukaku has sorted out everything on his side with Juventus, so it is just down to the two clubs to agree to the right solution.

Juventus want to sign Lukaku ‘at all costs’, which is why they are now willing to overlook the Vlahovic obstacle. Careful financial considerations will have to be made, though, despite their insistence on bringing in the Belgium international.

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