Belfast Telegraph

Lukaku in £80m no to Manchester United ahead of return to Chelsea

By Miguel Delaney

Romelu Lukaku has made up his mind to go to Chelsea, and is set to turn down Manchester United for a return to Stamford Bridge that will cost upward of £80m.

The 24-year-old gave a number of clues to his future while on international duty with Belgium, stating that he “knows what’s happening”, and significant progress has already been made on a move to the new champions.

United made an enquiry last week and, while they were not given a firm ‘no’, the Old Trafford club were told that a deal with Chelsea is very close.

With Lukaku (below) said to currently be on wages of £80,000 a week, that figure is likely to be doubled in a move back to London, although the Stamford Bridge hierarchy will hope to pay less than Everton’s asking price of £100m.

There is a belief that can be brought down to £80m, although the Goodison Park club are in an exceptionally strong negotiating position since their recent takeover.

Sources also say that Everton would actually prefer to do a deal with Manchester United because they are interested in players coming the other way, especially Sergio Romero and Chris Smalling.

When pressed on how his agent Mino Raiola “likes to do business with United”, Lukaku responded: “I’m the player, I will take the decisions. I know what’s happening, but I can’t tell you anything more.”

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