Chelsea: The first six fixtures of the 2021/22 Premier League
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Chelsea are in ‘hot’ talks with Inter Milan over the potential signing of Romelu Lukaku, reports say. Thomas Tuchel wants a new striker after allowing Olivier Giroud to leave. And while Erling Haaland is their preferred target, the Blues appear to be making contingencies behind the scenes.
Chelsea have been quiet in the transfer window so far.
Unlike in previous years, when the Blues have spent with enthusiasm, they’re yet to recruit a marquee name.
Chelsea know they need a new striker to replace Giroud, who was allowed to join AC Milan for £2million last week.
As things stand, Haaland is their top target. However, with the Borussia Dortmund star valued at £150m and with the Bundesliga giants in no mood to sell, they’re looking at alternatives.
And The Sun say Chelsea are in ‘hot’ talks with Inter Milan over a potential deal for Lukaku.
The Belgium international previously insisted he was happy to stay at the San Siro, despite the agonising departure of Antonio Conte as manager.
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Express Sport was told earlier in the campaign that Lukaku was happy with life in Italy and had no plans to return to the Premier League.
But, despite that, it seems Chelsea are doing everything they can to ensure the hitman returns to Stamford Bridge.
Lukaku previously joined during Andre-Villas Boas’ time in charge but didn’t set the world alight, enjoying loan spells at West Brom and Everton before moving to the latter on a permanent basis.
Chelsea thought they were going to bring him back to west London in the summer transfer window of 2018, when Conte ruled the roost.
But that didn’t happen, with Manchester United hijacking their pursuit and bringing him to Old Trafford instead.
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Lukaku spent two years at United, scoring 28 goals in his first season before struggling following the sacking of Jose Mourinho.
And he’s been outstanding in Italy ever since, enhancing his reputation as one of the best players on the planet in the process.
Speaking in July, former Liverpool star Peter Crouch urged Lukaku to consider a move back to Chelsea.
He told Paddy Power: “Romelu Lukaku has to be a target for Premier League clubs, without a doubt.
“Look at the money you’d have to spend to get Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappe or even Harry Kane. It would cost a lot less to get Lukaku, yet he’s a banker for Premier League goals.
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“He gets better every season and I wouldn’t bet against him winning the Euros Golden Boot now. Belgium are a top side and he’s going to get more goals.
“The obvious English destination is Chelsea, though. He’d fit in there. They’ve got pace, which suits him, willing runners, and they’d have an abundance of ability around him.
“He’s been at Chelsea before and I think he’s got something to prove there. I could see him being a good fit under Thomas Tuchel.
“Similarly, if Chelsea sign Erling Haaland, they are title contenders without a doubt. They’ve got a squad capable of a title challenge and will have confidence after winning the Champions League.
“If they get Haaland, they’re 100% in it. It’s going to be a fascinating season to see if anyone can topple Manchester City.”
Lukaku isn’t the only player being linked with Chelsea.
They’ve been tipped to go after Harry Kane, even though the chances of Tottenham selling to a direct rival appear to be remote.
There’s interest in Bayern Munich hitman Robert Lewandowski, who could leave the Allianz Arena behind for a new challenge in the Premier League.
And talk of a potential deal for Antoine Griezmann is refusing to go away, either.
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