Thomas Vermaelen’s three-word Romelu Lukaku statement sums up Man Utd mistake

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Thomas Vermaelen’s three-word statement on Romelu Lukaku summed up what Manchester United are missing as they search for a striker.

United have been linked with Harry Kane and Erling Haaland in the summer transfer window as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer seeks a centre-half to lead his attack.

Either of those could cost in excess of £150million – while the £67m Inter Milan paid for Lukaku two years ago is increasingly looking like a bargain.

United sold Lukaku to Inter two seasons after paying £76m to prise him away from Everton, where he had scored 87 goals in 166 games.

He hit the net 42 times in 96 games for United before being sold by Solskjaer in the summer of 2019 .

But the powerful striker has really hit his stride at Inter, scoring 23 goals in his first Serie A campaign and 24 in his second as he helped fire the Nerazzurri to a first top-flight title in 11 years.

Lukaku's performances have attracted the attentions of other top clubs around Europe, with the striker believed to be on the radars of both Chelsea and Manchester City despite having insisted he is committed to Inter.

And his Belgium team-mate Vermaelen has underlined exactly what United have missed since shipping out the striker, who scored in his country's Euro 2020 warm-up win over Croatia on Sunday.

Lukaku, Vermaelen, Kevin de Bruyne and Co will open their Group B campaign against Russia on Saturday.

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And speaking at a press conference ahead of the clash, former Arsenal defender Vermaelen heaped praise on the Inter hitman.

“Lukaku is dominant,” said Vermaelen, now playing for Vissel Kobe in Japan.

“He had a fantastic season at Inter, let’s hope he’ll show the same at the European Championship too.”

Lukaku only scored twice at the Euro 2016 finals in France, where Belgium were knocked out by Wales in the quarter-finals.

But he has found the target 60 times in 96 games for his country – and will no doubt be out to further silence his doubters at this year's tournament.

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  • Harry Kane
  • Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
  • Serie A
  • Euro 2020
  • Manchester United FC
  • Erling Haaland

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