Romelu Lukaku is a name that is familiar to most Manchester United fans and certainly Jose Mourinho, after working with the Belgian at Chelsea. Lukaku has recently informed Everton that he won’t be signing a new contract, although he still has two years remaining on his current deal. It’s almost as if Ronald Koeman can sit back and allow the bidding war to begin. The Belgian international has been key to Everton this season, scoring 19 goals so far this season. A goal scoring record like that deserves to be playing at a higher level, although I believe Everton are going places under Koeman. There’s no doubt that Koeman, should he still be there next season after the Dutchman has been linked with jobs at Barcelona and Arsenal, will want to keep hold of his star man, and there’s no question that Everton will demand similar figures to the one United paid for Paul Pogba last summer. But does this contract revelation mean Lukaku is Old Trafford-bound?
Maybe. Lukaku would fit into Jose Mourinho’s idea of a typical ‘number nine’. We’ve seen from his time at Chelsea that he likes his strikers to be strong and quick a la Didier Drogba and Diego Costa. The question mark over a move to Old Trafford would be Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s future. There’s speculation Zlatan will stay, and speculation that he won’t, I suppose time will tell. If Zlatan stays, would United feel the need to try and sign the Belgian or risk him going elsewhere? If Zlatan doesn’t stay, which seems unlikely as that would mean United and Zlatan would both need to pass up the additional year signed as part of his contract last summer, then United will try and sign a striker. However, I do believe that Zlatan will stay for another season, especially if United make the Champions League this season.
One factor that could swing in United’s favour regarding this transfer is Paul Pogba. The Belgian is good friends with the most expensive player in the world, and he could sway Lukaku to stay in the North West should he leave Everton in the summer. Also, Lukaku’s agent is football super-agent Mino Raiola, who is also Pogba’s, Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s and Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s agent, and he may be keen to deal with United again considering the money they spent last summer. The future of Wayne Rooney is also still unclear, and he could play a part in this deal, with the former Everton man dreaming of a Goodison Park return, and Everton said to be keen to resign the England captain.
The other possibility is that Lukaku rejoins Chelsea, and could very well possibly replace Diego Costa. Not too long ago there was speculation that the Spanish international was set for a big-money move to China, and no doubt that speculation will resurge in the summer. The deciding factor over a move to Stamford Bridge would be if Chelsea could find a buyer for Costa, therefore they could miss out.
There’s a chance Lukaku could sign a new deal and will stay for another season, but there’s no doubt he has earned himself a big move. The Belgian does have time on his side too, much to Everton’s advantage, as the striker is only 23. Personally, I think Lukaku would be a very good signing for United and he could elevate himself to another level playing alongside players like Paul Pogba, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Juan Mata who will feed him chance after chance. It seems Everton hold all the keys to any move happening, so it certainly could be an interesting summer.