Chelsea are confident of signing Romelu Lukaku this summer after reports emerged of a disagreement over his new contract with Everton
According to the Mirror, Romelu Lukaku has decided against signing a new contract with Everton after disagreements over the release clause, alerting Chelsea to the possibility of signing the Belgian superstar this summer.
Everton are apparently demanding that Lukaku’s new contract include a release clause of around £90 million, however Lukaku and his agent Mino Raiola are adamant that the release clause can be no more than £70 million.
Raiola had previously said that Lukaku was on the verge of signing a new contract with the Merseyside club and reiterated his stance once more last week, saying Lukaku would “99.99%” sign a new contract at Goodison Park.
However, it appears that talks have now broken down after the dispute over the release clause. Lukaku has said on several occasions that he feels he is ready for a step up to Champions League football and it seems likely that he is reluctant to tie himself down to a club that realistically might not be in the competition in the near future.
Several clubs had already tried to sign Lukaku in the summer, with Manchester United and Bayern Munich having bids rejected. Even Chelsea had a bid of £57 million rejected in the summer, according to the Mirror.
The Mirror claim that Chelsea will now reignite their interest in the striker this summer. With Diego Costa’s future beyond this season uncertain, Chelsea need a ready made replacement for the powerful forward, a role Lukaku can perfectly don.
They also state that both Real Madrid and Juventus are interested in the striker. Madrid are looking to heavily invest in their squad this summer and might also need replacements for Karim Benzema, who most recently was linked with a stunning swap move to Arsenal for Alexis Sanchez.
Madrid have a habit of buying the most talented players in the world and with his record in England over the past few years, there is no doubting the 23-year Belgian international’s immense potential.
Juventus, on the other hand, recently signed Gonzalo Higuain in a massive £78 million deal but with the Argentinian striker turning 30 at the end of this year, it is possible they could be looking at a more long-term option.
The Bianconeri have also been signing young, talented players in recent years and although Lukaku is not as unknown as some of the players they have snapped up, he would be a brilliant addition to their side.
However, if it comes down to a price war – which Everton will no doubt encourage should Lukaku refuse the new contract and decide to leave – Chelsea and Real Madrid remain the clear favourites for his signature this summer.