Will it be a case of third time lucky for<br>Lukaku?

Romelo Lukaku has comeback to Inter Milan for his third reign from Chelsea. We discuss if it would be a third time lucky for him or not.

Staff Reporter
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It is fair to say that Romelu Lukaku's record-setting return to Chelsea in the summer of 2021

did not play out as planned. The Belgian returned to Stamford Bridge with a £98 million

price tag hanging around his neck, and that was considered to be money well spent at the


Steps to west London were retraced on the back of a productive spell in Milan with Inter that

delivered 64 goals through 95 appearances and a Serie A title triumph. With important

Premier League experience also tucked under his belt, there appeared to be little risk involved

in a deal for a fearsome No.9.

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Chelsea, though, struggled for consistency as a collective and those issues have carried over

into the current campaign. Early stumbles out of the blocks in 2022-23 led to the dismissal of

Thomas Tuchel and left the Blues scratching around for support in EPL tips as they slip to

30/1 for title glory and 11/10 for a top-four finish.

Lukaku is no longer around to aid their cause, with the decision taken to ship him back to San

Siro on a season-long loan. He has gone full circle in the space of 12 months, and history may

well repeat itself over the course of the next year.

That is because there is no agreement in place with Inter regarding a permanent transfer. As

things stand, a man who has previously turned out for West Brom, Everton and Manchester United will be due back in England next summer.

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A change in the dugout could see a slate wiped clean with parent employers, with those in

Italy aware that transfer matters may be taken out of their hands. Inter CEO Beppe Marotta

has said: "We absolutely want to get the best contribution out of Lukaku, and then at the end

of the season we'll sit down and discuss him with Chelsea. I don't know if a change of coaches means that his return is to be automatic."

Graham Potter is now calling the shots at Stamford Bridge and will want to cast an eye over

all of those at his disposal before making any future calls. That process will involve those

who are currently plying their trade elsewhere.

Lukaku may be out of sight at Chelsea, but he is not altogether out of mind. His pedigree

remains without question, with 100 Premier League goals on an impressive CV, and he is

more than capable of leading a line for the Blues if a system that suits him is implemented.


Tuchel was, rightly or wrongly, reluctant to cater to the demands of one player when drawing

up his tactical blueprint. With the likes of Raheem Sterling and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

now on board with the Blues, it may be that Potter favours a similar approach.

No definitive decisions have been made, though, and that is helping to keep all doors ajar. It

could be that Lukaku strolls back through one of those in 2023, with there still a chance for

him to make it a case of third time lucky on Chelsea's books.

Inter Milan Chelsea Fc Romelo Lukaku