Inter Milan have pinned a staggering £102.5million price tag on Romelu Lukaku’s head amid speculations about Chelsea’s interest in the Belgium international.
According to Italian news outlet Tuttosport, the reigning Serie A champions are determined to fend off potential suitors for their prized asset and are ready to fight tooth and nail to retain Lukaku this summer.
Inter splashed out a club-record £68m to sign the 28-year-old from Manchester United in summer 2019. Despite his underwhelming career at Old Trafford, Lukaku has developed into one of the fiercest strikers in Europe’s top-five divisions since moving to Italy.
The ex-Everton star has netted at least 30 goals in both his seasons at Inter, playing an instrumental part in the Nerazzurri’s Serie A title charge this past season. Indeed, Lukaku has fully repaid the club’s trust in him as new boss Simone Inzaghi hopes to build his side’s title defense around the Belgian superstar.
Lukaku’s blistering showings over the past two years earned him an improved contract for the new campaign, with Inter increasing their forward’s salary from £125,000 to £140,000-a-week.
Despite pledging his future to the red-black colors just recently, Lukaku could still be on his way out of Lombardy this summer.
Chelsea are keen to bolster their attacking options ahead of the new season following Timo Werner’s lackluster debut Premier League campaign. His quick movements between the lines aside, the German has failed to convince Thomas Tuchel regarding his finishing.
Additionally, the 2020/21 Champions League winners are set to sever ties with Tammy Abraham and have already waved goodbye to Olivier Giroud, who left London for AC Milan.
Tuchel is intent on solving his side’s scoring woes by hiring Borussia Dortmund’s goal-machine Erling Haaland. The Norwegian’s name features the top of Chelsea’s wishlist, though the Bundesliga giants continue to play hardball on his price tag.
After selling Jadon Sancho to Manchester United, Die Borussen are hell-bent on keeping hold of Haaland, even though he would be able to leave for £70m next summer.
Dortmund are adamant their prized possession won’t leave the Signal Iduna Park for less than £150m, a figure deemed to excessive by Chelsea.
Although the Londoners hope to test the Germans’ resolve by tabling a British-record £130m bid, it seems highly unlikely they’d be able to convince Dortmund to green-light the deal.
Therefore, Chelsea could turn their attention to Lukaku.