“I cheered for Chelsea as a baby, and now coming again and attempting to assist them win extra titles is an incredible feeling.”
Lower than 12 months later, the Belgian striker leaves the membership, in all probability as a result of one of the vital costly switch errors within the historical past of the Premier League.
Lukaku’s return to Chelsea below a five-year contract price the Blues a report £ 97.5 million, however he despatched in 10 months on the primary mortgage couldn’t obtain the affect that neither he nor the membership hoped for.
His signing was supposed to show Chelsea right into a Premier League champion, so how and why did it go flawed?
A motion that ought to by no means have occurred?
When Chelsea introduced the re-signing of Lukaku, it turned out that they’d offered the final piece of the puzzle.
The 29-year-old has simply loved a stellar season at Inter, scoring 24 targets within the league and making 11 assists because the Italian staff ended a decade of dominance for Juventus and received the Serie A title.
Chelsea additionally had unfinished enterprise in Lukaku. He first joined them as a teen with Anderlecht in 2011, however left three years later with out scoring.
“I’m joyful and blessed to return to this glorious membership,” Lukaku stated on his return to Stamford Bridge.
“It was an extended journey for me. I got here right here as a baby who wanted to study quite a bit, and now I am coming again with extra expertise and extra adults. “
There was motivation and pedigree, and Chelsea desperately wanted a striker. It was a motion that made full sense.
He couldn’t hope for a greater second debut, as on August 22 he scored within the victory over “Arsenal” with a rating of 2-0, but it surely didn’t take lengthy for all the pieces to resolve.
After scoring twice within the 3-0 win over Aston Villa on September 11, Lukaku didn’t rating one other purpose within the Premier League till December 26.
“It was seen because the final piece of the puzzle,” Chelsea fan and cfcuk creator Tim Rolls informed BBC Sport.
“Folks have been excited. We had quick extensive gamers, and he was the piece that accomplished the puzzle. He was anticipated to make us rivals.
“At first he appeared on the enterprise, however for some motive it ended in a short time.”
Accidents and a coronavirus epidemic didn’t assist, however on the sphere he confirmed little power, leaping and ending abilities, which helped him rating 47 targets in two seasons at Inter.
Regardless of Lukaku’s return, the attacker typically appeared unmotivated.
A Sky Italia interview in December appears to substantiate this view as he stated he was “not joyful” along with his function in “Blues”.
“It [the return to Inter] was dominated by Lukaku. He made it very clear within the interview he gave, “stated Italian soccer skilled James Horncastle to BBC Radio 5 Stay.
“I believe the implication was that leaving Inter was not his determination. This was as a result of monetary difficulties and tensions that the membership was dealing with on the time.
“The circumstances of his departure largely performed into his thoughts and embarrassed him.”
A glove that simply did not match
On this interview with Sky Italia, Lukaku made it clear that a lot of his unhappiness at Chelsea is as a result of manner he was utilized by supervisor Thomas Tuchel.
The German coach rapidly dismissed claims that his system didn’t match Lukaku’s strengths, however he nonetheless tried to affect when he performed.
When Chelsea beat Crystal Palace 1-0 in February, Lukaku had simply seven touches – the least for a participant in 90 minutes of a Premier League match.
“It is not in regards to the system,” Tuchel stated later.
“The system will not be altering as a result of it’s the similar assault construction. We at all times assault 4-1, it is simply to construct, typically we’re 3-2, typically 4-1. It would not change something for him. “
Regardless of his difficulties, Lukaku completed final season as Chelsea’s high scorer, scoring 15 targets in all competitions, however given the numerous price paid for his signing, followers of Tuchel and Chelsea anticipated him to contribute extra.
“As a result of it is so costly, it must be one among Chelsea’s worst subscribers,” Rolls added.
“After we purchased Diego Costa, he instantly influenced the staff. He was the chief, however Lukaku was virtually the alternative.
“Different forwards could have wished him to steer, however he did not. We have been left with out a helm.”
Lukaku was additionally linked with Manchester Metropolis final summer season, and Mika Richards believes it will be a greater transfer for him.
“I believe if Lukaku was on Manchester Metropolis, he would have scored,” the previous Metropolis defender informed Monday Evening Membership final month.
“I believe the distinction is the system.”
Will the return of Inter restore Lukaku?
Inter didn’t defend their title final season and completed second to rivals Milan, though the purpose was not an issue for Simone Inzaghi, as no staff has scored greater than 84 targets for Inter within the league.
However the Italian facet will think about the return of the participant who scored 34 and 30 targets within the earlier two seasons on the membership, as a step that can give them a bonus over rivals within the subsequent marketing campaign.
Subsequent 12 months, Lukaku will probably be 30 years outdated, so time is now not on his facet, however joyful Lukaku kills Lukaku, and it’s clear that this will probably be a step that can swimsuit all events.
“There have been murals from Lukaku when he was final at Inter,” Horncastle added. “He was named the very best Serie A participant of the 12 months [Cristiano] Ronaldo was the highest scorer – that is how good he was.
It’s clear that he felt that he performed his finest soccer at Inter, that he’s understood, that he understands them.
“He ought to by no means have gone.”