Chelsea ‘reach an agreement in principle with Inter Milan’ over Romelu Lukaku re-joining Italian club on loan – with the Belgium international expected to ‘undergo his medical NEXT WEEK’ before completing £6.9m return to the San Siro
- Romelu Lukaku has not hidden his desire to move back to Serie A next season
- He suffered a disappointing campaign with Chelsea after returning for £98.5m
- Chelsea have reportedly reached an agreement in principle with Inter Milan
- Inter Milan will pay £6.9million plus add-ons to secure Lukaku on loan next term
- The Belgium international, 29, is expected to undergo a medical next week
Chelsea have reportedly reached an agreement in principle with Inter Milan over Romelu Lukaku’s return to Serie A next season.
According to The Athletic, Inter Milan will pay £6.9million plus add-ons to secure the services of Lukaku on a temporary basis ahead of the 2022-23 campaign.
The Belgium international is expected to undergo a medical next week before returning to the San Siro on loan.
Chelsea have reached an agreement in principle with Inter over Romelu Lukaku ‘s return there
It’s claimed Inter owner Steven Zhang (pictured with Lukaku back in 2019) has finally agreed to a loan package worth around £6.9million plus add-ons
The paperwork for the deal is still being finalised but Inter will not have an option or obligation to buy Lukaku after his loan spell in Serie A.
Chelsea are said to be reluctant to let the striker leave for a discounted price after paying £98.5m for his return to Stamford Bridge.
Therefore, Lukaku – who is contracted at Stamford Bridge until 2026 – will return to Stamford Bridge following the 2022-23 campaign.
The Belgian striker has not hidden his desire to move back to Serie A after a poor season with Chelsea, in which he scored just 15 goals in 44 appearances.
It emerged in Italy that Lukaku took the lead in pushing through the comeback, bypassing even his agent Federico Pastorello by picking up the phone to Inzaghi over two months ago.
Lukaku scored just 15 goals in 44 appearances after he returned to Stamford Bridge last year
Lukaku helped Inter win the Scudetto during two successful seasons there before making the return to Chelsea last year
It’s said the call took place at 8.30am on April 5 and, after wishing the coach a happy 46th birthday, Lukaku reportedly asked: ‘Mister, what can I do to return to Inter?’
The conversation came the day before Chelsea played their crunch Champions League quarter-final, first leg against Real Madrid.
They lost the match 3-1, with Karim Benzema scoring a stunning hat-trick, and Lukaku wasted one of Chelsea’s best opportunities on the night as he headed wide when well placed.
However, the Athletic have reported that it was the relationship between Chelsea’s new co-owner Todd Boehly and Michael Yormark – president of Roc Nation, who represent Lukaku – that pushed the deal over the line.
Boehly was convinced that Lukaku’s departure was best for all parties once the Belgian made it clear how determined he was to leave.
According to Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, it took three hours’ worth of talks to come to an agreement but one has finally been struck.
As a result, Lukaku will return to the side he helped win the Serie A title with in the 2020-21 season.
Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly (left) is convinced that Lukaku’s departure is best for all parties
Thomas Tuchel (left) is now identifying replacements in attack for the 2022-2023 campaign
Lukaku’s exit sharpens Tuchel’s need to find another goal threat and Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling is at the forefront of his plans.
Chelsea have not made contact with City but, with one year left on his deal, they believe Sterling, 27, would be valued at around £55m.
City have been prepared for Sterling’s departure and will not stand in his way but Sportsmail understands he is still considering his options.
Chelsea are also keen on Robert Lewandowski but his desire to join Barcelona makes a deal unlikely. RB Leipzig forward Christopher Nkunku and Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele are options as well.