Romelu Lukaku reportedly won’t push to leave Manchester United this summer amid interest from Inter Milan.
According to the Mirror‘s Darren Lewis, United are in talks with Inter and are willing to let the Belgian go if the Italian side meet their £80 million valuation.
However, Lukaku and his agent, Federico Pastorello, want to show “respect for the club and its fans” and won’t force an exit. Rather, it will be left to the Red Devils.
Lukaku’s approach to a potential departure this summer comes after Paul Pogba publicly said he could be receptive to a “new challenge” elsewhere amid interest from Real Madrid.
The forward struggled to build on a promising first campaign at Old Trafford, in which he bagged 27 goals and nine assists in 51 games, with a difficult second season. He made 45 appearances in 2018-19, netting 15 times and setting up his team-mates on four occasions.
Lukaku’s national-team manager, Roberto Martinez, has suggested he might be better off leaving the club, per HLN‘s Kristof Terreur:
Kristof Terreur 📰🎥 @HLNinEngeland
Roberto Martínez on Romelu Lukaku: “I think the situation is quite clear. Romelu Lukaku and Manchester United have spoken to each other. It’s been quite open that a move would be beneficial for both parties. The next step is to find the right destination.” #mufc https://t.co/33noevVqXC
Football writer Jordan Clarke and commentator Tim Long both agree with the Belgium boss:
Jordan Clarke @FourFourJordan
Would personally be more disappointed if Lukaku was here next season more than him leaving. Better for him to find a team that plays to his strengths and better for United to find a player who offers more than what he does.
Tim Long 🎙 @timlongsports
Allowing him to leave after such a big initial investment would be a sign of the power & trust placed in the manager. There are more polished options available, capable of playing with more energy, movement, technique & intelligence. Get the right one, & thats a huge step forward
If United do manage to get their asking price for the 26-year-old, they would have plenty of funds with which to buy a replacement.
However, there aren’t many players out there as prolific as Lukaku can be when his strengths are played to.
Though Lukaku might have been disappointed with his final tally, only Pogba netted more in all competitions for United last season, but he played over 1,000 more minutes than the former Everton striker and had penalty duties.
United will lose a lot of goals from their team if they part with Lukaku, and there’s no guarantee they will be able to replace them even with a hefty fee from Inter.