Chelsea loan Romelu Lukaku to Roma on season-long deal

By Sports Desk August 31, 2023

Romelu Lukaku has joined Roma on a season-long loan from Chelsea, ending the long-running stand-off between player and club.

The PA news agency understands the Serie A club will pay an £8million fee with no obligation to buy while also taking on the Belgium striker’s wages, which will be reduced from the £325,000-a-week he earned at Stamford Bridge.

Blues manager Mauricio Pochettino hinted last week that there could still be a place for the 30-year-old in his plans if a deal could not be agreed before Friday’s transfer deadline.

However, PA understands that Roma owner Dan Friedkin’s prioritising of Lukaku’s signing as a critical part of the club’s hopes to return to the Champions League for the first time since 2019 prompted them to ensure a deal was done.

Lukaku has not played for Chelsea, whom he joined for £97.5m from Inter Milan two summers ago, since May 2022 and spent last season on loan back at Inter, helping them reach the Champions League final.

The club were keen to re-sign him this summer but he was reportedly unhappy after being left out of Simone Inzaghi’s starting line-up for the final against Manchester City in Istanbul, which Inter lost 1-0 after Lukaku came on and missed a late opportunity to level the game.

Juventus had also been keen to take him on loan earlier in the summer but it is understood Chelsea had been holding out for a permanent sale, albeit one that would recoup a significant proportion of the fee they paid in 2021.

Lukaku, who first played for Chelsea between 2011 and 2014 but made only 15 appearances between loan spells at West Brom and Everton before being sold to the Goodison Park outfit, will link up with Jose Mourinho, with whom he worked during his time at Manchester United.

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