Late on Monday, an article in the Italian media discussed the feasibility of Romelu Lukaku’s exit from Chelsea, and how the situation was blocking half of Europe’s transfer market.
Should he return to Inter, it could create a domino effect, but everything needs to be sorted by June 30th because of the Growth Decree deadline that would allow the Italians to make the player’s wages more affordable.
The gist was that Lukaku needed to have a chat with Chelsea to try and force an exit, but with him on international duty with Belgium, that needed to wait.
Well, that’s now over, and Corriere dello Sport have an article on what will happen next, which starts with the striker returning to England.
It’s said Lukaku ‘flies to London to free himself from Chelsea’, as his ‘priority is to return to Inter’, where the ‘hypothesis is a double loan and then the redemption’.
Corriere explain that ‘since last night’, Lukaku has been ‘free from commitments’, since he didn’t travel with Belgium to Poland for the Nations League, and he will ‘devote himself to his real big summer goal, which is to return to Inter’.
In fact, ‘everything suggests that Lukaku will act in person, meaning that he will go to London to meet Chelsea and get the green light to get back into Nerazzuri colours’.
It’ll be tough, because ‘the first enquiries carried out by Sebastien Ledure’, the player’s ‘trusted lawyer’, showed that Chelsea have ‘no intention of granting a free loan’.
While the first requests were of €25m, it has since dropped to €20m, which still remains ‘far from Inter’s availability’.
There is also the option of inserting Denzel Dumfries in any deal, but that would be in a separate operation.
Either way, Inter ‘have now understood that to re-embrace Lukaku, it will not be enough to pay his salary, but something will have to be paid for the loan’.
The €20m remains too large, ‘but a white smoke could be reached around (and no more than) half that figure’, and there will be work put in ‘on the overall formula of the operation’.
The idea would be to set up something more complex than just a year long loan, and this ‘prior arrangements would be made to renew the loan for another season once the first campaign is done, meaning in the summer of 2023’.
Then, in 2024, ‘the redemption of the card by Inter would take place’.
It could work, but the clock is ticking, and everything needs to be done by June 30th.