Transfer Rumour: Manchester United and Chelsea set sights on contract rebel Romelu Lukaku
Latest reports reveal Lukaku wont renew his contract and both PL giants are ready to pounce on the opportunity of signing him.
What’s the story
Romelu Lukaku’s contract situation with Everton has alerted Chelsea and Manchester United, who are supposedly on the look out for a striker in the summer. The Belgian was expected to sign a contract extension with the Merseyside club, but he has apparently chosen not to.
A fortnight ago, manager Ronald Koeman had stated that Lukaku was close to signing on a new contract. "It's still close to being signed -- maybe I need to sign that contract then we can finish with all the stories,'' the Everton manager had said.
However, latest reports reveal that Lukaku won’t renew his contract and both the Premier League giants are ready to pounce on the opportunity of signing him.
In case you didn’t know...
The towering striker joined Everton on a season-long loan from Chelsea in 2013, a deal which was made permanent in the following summer window. Gradually, Lukaku has gone on to become the most important player of the side and has time and again attracted a lot of interest from the big guns.
The 23-year-old has been in sumptuous form for the blue half of Merseyside this season as well and is the top scorer of Premier League (19 goals) along with Harry Kane.
The heart of the matter
With Lukaku scoring goals left right and centre, he was bound to attract attention from the teams on the upper echelons of the Premier League. While Chelsea have registered interest in re-signing him before as well, Manchester United have jumped into the fray now.
For the league leaders, Diego Costa’s future looks uncertain as reports emerged that he wants a multi-million move to China after a bust-up with Antonio Conte. Though the rumours were quashed by the manager, it looks highly unlikely that Costa will stay in London for the next season.
On the other hand, United are still to tie down their talismanic striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic to a new contract and would want to be ready for a future without the Swede.
The reason thrown around for Lukaku not signing a contract extension which would have seen his wages rise to £140,000 a week is that the Belgian wants to play for a Champions League club. While Chelsea are on course to qualify for Europe’s biggest tournament, United are still some way from finishing in the top four.
Moreover, the Red Devils are widely believed to be behind Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann and a move for Lukaku looks highly unlikely, even if Zlatan doesn’t sign an extension.
Both for Lukaku and Chelsea, the move would do a world of good. While Chelsea will find an able replacement for Costa (if he chooses to move), the Belgian will have a giant club to play for and a chance of winning silverwares every season.