Everton’s Romelu Lukaku explains why he left Chelsea

Romelu Lukaku

The Belgian forward admitted that the chance to play regularly and be involved in a long-term project was critical.

Everton forward Romelu Lukaku has admitted in an interview with The Guardian that he left Chelsea to secure first-team football and was convinced by the Merseyside club’s ambitions to commit to a long-term project.

The Belgium international is one of the most promising young strikers in English football and was being tipped as the man to replace Didier Drogba at Stamford Bridge after he joined from Anderlecht.

However, after loan stints at West Brom and Everton, Lukaku opted to sign permanently for the Goodison Park outfit instead of biding his time in West London.

The powerful attacker’s fortunes have been mixed since moving to join Roberto Martinez’s men, but he looked back to his imperious best in scoring a brace against Southampton last weekend.

Lukaku has spoken out about his time at Chelsea and states that he has no regrets over his decision to leave the Blues.

“When you’re 18 and leave your family and go to such a massive club and don’t play for a whole year, it does a lot to you,” he told The Guardian.

“When you go to Chelsea at a young age it’s up to you if you want to survive. Sometimes it depends on the situation, too.

“I made the decision to leave. I chose. I thought: ‘I’m 21, what is going to happen now?’

“I could easily have stayed at Chelsea to fight for my place but I didn’t know what the manager’s ideas were with me and I didn’t know what the club’s plan was for me.

“Here the plan was clear – bring young players over, grow them into top players and win titles along the way. I saw myself as part of that, so that’s why I signed here on a permanent deal.”

Lukaku’s pace and power will be critical to Everton having a successful season, with early signs that the Belgian is set to be a hard man to stop this term.

His partnership with Arouna Kone and Ross Barkley have been noteworthy so far in 2015-16, with the Toffees netting five goals in their first two games.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch