Just as it seemed that Manchester United have trumped Chelsea to the signing of Romelu Lukaku, news from multiple sources have it that Chelsea have launched a counter bid of £75m for the much-sought-after striker : thus halting his eagerly anticipated move to Old Trafford.
Lukaku was expected to have his medicals with United’s medical team, who had arranged to meet the Belgian striker in Los angeles where he is currently having his holiday.
Chelsea were perhaps encouraged to launched their own bid when news came from Everton on Thursday that they have not reached any agreement with United to sign Lukaku.
Antonio Conte, it must be remembered, launched an aborted bid for the prolific striker last season.His latest action may be an attempt to bring Lukaku back to the club that first introduced him to the Barclays Premier league, especially now that they are struggling to find a replacement for their want-away Brazilian striker, Diego Costa.
Another aspect of the ensuring drama is that Chelsea’s bid does not include the fee Lukaku ‘s agent Mino Riaola would receive if his player chooses to sign for Manchester United.
The current situation will evidently benefit Everton, who stand to benefit from a bidding war that is likely to break out soon between the two Premier league heavyweights.
As the situation stands, it is now left for Lukaku to decide which of the two clubs he wants to sign for before the transfer market closes. And his final destination is anyone guess.
There is an ironic twist to the current Lukaku’s tranfer.It was Jose Mourinho, in his second spell at Chelsea, who sold him to Everton two seasons ago when he deemed him surplus to requirement.Today the same Mourinho, in his new managerial position at United, is now willing to shell our a huge amount of money for the same player he saw as insufficiently equipped to play for him two seasons ago at Chelsea. Has the stone the builder refused turned to the head cornerstone,as the idiom goes?
The current impasse will only be resolved by an auction; and the club Lukaku would eventually sign for would be determined by the one that is willing to offer him higher wages and add more to the £75m that both clubs have tabled for his signature.