Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku set to join AS Roma on season-long loan

Noah Strang
By:
Noah Strang
30/08/2023
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Romelu Lukaku to join Roma on loan

Chelsea’s Romelu Lukaku will join Roma on a season-long loan. The Belgian was spotted leaving a private plane in Rome.

News Insights

  • Lukaku has been linked to Inter Milan, Juventus, and Tottenham.
  • Roma will pay a £5m ($9.8m AUD) loan fee and £6m ($11.7m AUD) of Lukaku’s wages.
  • Under Mourinho in the 2017-18 season, Lukaku scored 27 goals in all competitions and won the Europa League.
  • Chelsea will likely make a move for a striker before the window closes.

Chelsea’s Romelu Lukaku is set for yet another Serie A loan. Instead of joining Inter or Juventus, like many expected, the Belgian striker will head south to Rome to play for former Chelsea manager José Mourinho. 

Lukaku rejoined Chelsea two years ago following a successful stint at Inter Milan. The striker then immediately clashed with then manager Thomas Tuchel, and was loaned back to Inter for the 2022-23 season. 

The Belgium international was spotted landing in Rome in a private jet piloted by Roma owner Dan Friedkin.

Lukaku's Chelsea return continues to disappoint

When Romelu Lukaku rejoined Chelsea from Inter Milan two years ago, Chelsea fans and Lukaku rejoiced. That move was supposed to be the end of Lukaku’s redemption arc after failing to perform in the Premier League during prior stints at Chelsea and Manchester United. 

Unfortunately for Lukaku and Blues fans, the sweet feelings surrounding Lukaku’s return quickly turned sour. The big Belgian scored against Arsenal in his first Premier League match for Chelsea, but only scored seven goals during the rest of the season. 

Lukaku also gave an infamous interview to Sky Italia where he criticised Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel and expressed his desire to go back to Inter. 

Since that interview dropped, stories about Lukaku leaving became a near constant. They quieted when Lukaku joined Inter on loan last season, but reemerged as the season came to a close. 

Lukaku has been linked to Inter Milan, Juventus, and Tottenham over the past few months. A move to Roma puts this speculation to an end for the time being. 

Roma will pay a £5m ($9.8m AUD) loan  fee and £6m ($11.7m AUD) of Lukaku’s wages while he is on loan at the club.

Mourinho says Lukaku “needs to feel important.”

Roma manager José Mourinho has not yet committed on or confirmed Romelu Lukaku’s move to Rome. However, it is safe to assume the Portuguese manager is excited about Lukaku’s return to Italy. 

Mourinho has experience getting the best out of the Belgian striker. The 60-year-old manager coached Lukaku at Manchester United for a little over a season. 

Under José Mourinho in the 2017-18 season, Lukaku scored 27 goals in all competitions and Man United won the Europa League. 

At his best, Lukaku is probably the best striker in Serie A. Getting the best out of him is a difficult task though. Injuries plagued Lukaku last season and there are questions surrounding his mentality. 

Mourinho, speaking to The Times in 2021, said of Lukaku that, “He's a big guy, physically so strong, but there is also a kid inside who needs that love, needs that support, needs to feel important.

Chelsea still without a striker

Chelsea’s inability to score is no secret. The problem is so severe that some speculated Romelu Lukaku might actually stay in London and play a role in Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea side this season. Recent reporting makes it clear that this will not be the case. 

Without Lukaku, Chelsea’s only striker options are new signings Nicolas Jackson and Christopher Nkunku. The latter of those two has suffered a long-term injury and will miss most of the season, so Jackson is Pochettino’s only real striker available. . 

Chelsea will likely make a move for a striker before the window closes. Juventus’ Dusan Vlahovic is one of the names linked to the Blues. 

Recent reports say Chelsea outcast Romelu Lukaku is set to join Roma on a season-long loan. The Belgian was spotted leaving a private jet in Rome. If the move is confirmed, it will be Lukaku’s second straight season on loan. Lukaku will also be reunited with his former manager José Mourinho.