Where will we see Romelu Lukaku next season?
Whilst Mirallas will be a great asset for the Toffees next term, particularly with schedule that is likely to be hectic thanks to their participation in the Europa League, Romelu Lukaku is the man they really need to keep on Merseyside if they are to prosper.
Currently the Premier League’s top scorer, it’s no surprise Lukaku took the Everton Player of the Year Award and also no surprise that the striker has a host of clubs on his tail. The 24-year-old is said to be unsettled at Everton and has refused to sign a new deal, though has pleaded with the media to stop speculating about his future. Lukaku’s 24 goals have been crucial in getting Everton back into Europe, though he feels as though it’s time for a new challenge and both Chelsea and Manchester United are ready to offer him it.
Lukaku left Chelsea in 2013 after a successful loan spell at Everton and having started just once for his parent club. The striker set the Toffees back £28million but has more than lived up to his transfer fee and now, Chelsea are willing to spend more than double his initial fee to tempt the hitman back to Stamford Bridge. Jose Mourinho is also said to be keen on the striker after losing Zlatan Ibrahimovic to a serious knee injury. The Reds are set to hijack Lukaku’s return to the Blues with a bid totalling £85million bid and a deal worth £230,000-a-week.
That said, whilst it is reported Antonio Conte remains keen on the Belgian as he looks to take Chelsea back to the top, it’s possible that the Italian may favour Alvaro Morata. The Real Madrid man wants away from the Santiago Bernabéu following limited game time this season and has recently turned down a staggering £147million switch to the Chinese Super League as he looked to remain amongst Europe’s elite leagues.
It remains unseen whether Conte will try to sign both Lukaku and Morata but with Diego Costa bound for China, the Italian will need to replace Spaniard who currently boasts 23 goals this season. Lukaku made just one senior start for the Blues during his initial spell but has since gone on to score 106 goals in all competitions in 227 games and possesses immense firepower, the type that will make him thrive in Europe.
The striker also boasts great resilience needed at Europe’s top clubs. Following his brace against former club Chelsea last season, back in March, Lukaku experienced a frustrating goal drought for Everton and did not score again until late August. He remained positive and finally notched a hat-trick away to Sunderland, a showing which more than set him on his way as he now sits as the league’s top scorer, three goals ahead of second-placed Harry Kane.
Following his Player of the Year award win, Everton chairman Bill Kenwright pleaded with the striker to stay: “”I do hope we see many more goals from you, Rom.” Despite the pleas of Kenwright and any Evertonian, it’s unlikely Lukaku will be swayed and as the season concludes, he edges closer and closer towards that exit door.