If Romelu Lukaku leaves Chelsea for good this summer, then we will know why. It will be because he is not wanted by manager Jose Mourinho, and not because the striker does not want to play for the Blues.
That’s because the Belgium international has made it clear that he wants to play for Chelsea in 2014-15. In an interview with the World Soccer magazine, the 21-year-old said: ‘Yes. I wouldn’t sign a five-year contract with them otherwise’.
Lukaku’s answer was in response to a question whether he is preparing to play for Chelsea next season. From his statement, it is clear that the former Anderlecht starlet is ready to return to Stamford Bridge for the 2014-15 season, although in other interviews he has appeared open to moving elsewhere.
The Belgian youngster joined Chelsea in the summer of 2011, but has yet to make an impact at the Blues. Lukaku played on loan for West Bromwich Albion in 2012-13 and then for Everton in 2013-14. The stats below illustrate just how brilliant he has been in his loan spells away from Chelsea.
|Goals||Goal Assist||Big Chance Scored||Apps||Mins|
|West Brom (2012-13)||17||4||9||35||2,003|
However, Lukaku’s days at Chelsea appear numbered. Despite complaining throughout the 2013-14 season that he did not have a striker (because of the modest form of Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto’o and Demba Ba), Mourinho allowed Lukaku to go out on loan. And the stats above show just how prolific the youngster was for an Everton side that finished fifth in the Premier League.
Would Mourinho make a mistake if he allows Lukaku to leave Chelsea this summer? Perhaps not in the short term, as the Blues are set to sign Diego Costa from Atletico Madrid, but in the long term, the London club may regret it, especially given how ambitious Lukaku is.
‘I’ve always said that, by the age of 21, I wanted to be thought of as a top attacker’, he said. ‘I’m on the right road. I’m more intelligent, more effective in my forward play, my passing and my work in one-on-ones.’
Perhaps, Mourinho does not like Lukaku’s style of play and wants a different kind of centre-forward. But the Portuguese has convinced other players to change their style with success and at the age of 21, the Belgian can certainly modify his game a bit.