Jose Mourinho could ruin Ange Postecoglou’s first transfer window at Tottenham by signing striker target Romelu Lukaku for Roma first, according to a bombshell report.
Lukaku has had an eventful two years, to say the least. Following a brilliant 30-goal campaign with Inter, Chelsea sensationally re-signed him by smashing their transfer record with a huge £97.5million deal in August 2021.
However, Lukaku’s return to Stamford Bridge did not go to plan as he managed just eight Premier League goals during the 2021-22 season. He was also dropped by then manager Thomas Tuchel over a stunning interview in which he revealed his desire to go back to Inter one day.
The Belgian was resultantly loaned back to Inter last summer in an attempt to get his career back on track. But he struggled with injury problems and could not recapture his previous form with the Nerazzurri.
Inter have snubbed the opportunity to sign Lukaku on a permanent basis after learning he has held talks with their fierce rivals Juventus. But Juve might not sign him either as their ultras have publicly protested against such a deal.
Due to these factors, Lukaku is now back at Chelsea but is looking for a way out. Surprisingly, he has emerged as a target for Tottenham, with Postecoglou aiming to find another striker who can help Richarlison replace Harry Kane’s goals.
On Monday, it emerged that Spurs had begun initial talks with Chelsea to see if there was the possibility that a deal could be struck.
And earlier on Saturday, Spurs’ latest approach for Lukaku was met with positivity from Chelsea chiefs. However, according to fresh reports emerging from Italy, Mourinho and Roma might be about to hijack the transfer.
Roma could beat Tottenham to striker
As per Il Messaggero (as cited by Voce Giallorossa and Sport Witness), Roma are eyeing Lukaku as a ‘last-minute’ option to improve their forward line.
Roma’s owner, American billionaire Dan Friedkin, tries to complete a statement signing every summer and Lukaku is the player he is currently considering.
The move would certainly be a controversial one, given the 30-year-old’s close links with Inter. And it would lower Lukaku even further in the estimation of Inter supporters.
However, Roma know that Lukaku has the ability to score at least 20 goals a season in Italy, and he would therefore take them up a level.
Mourinho currently has Tammy Abraham and Andrea Belotti as centre-forwards in his squad. Abraham got off to a great start at Roma but has struggled to replicate that form since and is currently recovering from an ACL injury.
Interestingly, Lukaku moving to Roma would see him replace Abraham for the second time. Chelsea sold the Englishman to Roma five days after Lukaku joined in that whopping £97.5m deal two years ago.
Mourinho, of course, was in charge of Spurs between November 2019 and April 2021. His greatest triumph at Roma so far is helping them win the Europa Conference League in May last year, which is the club’s only major European trophy to date.