Chelsea re-sign Romelu Lukaku - but how does he compare to the strikers they already have

Romelu Lukaku returns to Chelsea from Inter Milan.Romelu Lukaku returns to Chelsea from Inter Milan.
Romelu Lukaku returns to Chelsea from Inter Milan. | Getty Images

Chelsea announced the re-signing of Romelu Lukaku after agreeing a £97.5 million deal with Italian side Inter Milan.

Lukaku has signed a five-year deal with the European champions and is expected to provide the goals that will see Chelsea put up a fight for the Premier League.

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The Belgium international first joined Chelsea in 2011 as a man with a growing reputation and even though he stayed on till 2014, his time at Stamford Bridge was mostly as a back-up to more established names.

This time,Lukaku returns as genuinely one of the sought after strikers in world football having led Inter Milan to their first league title in a decade and helping himself to 24 league goals and 11 assists.

At a glance: 5 keys points:

  • Idolises Didier Drogba- although Lukaku’s first stint with Chelsea was unsatisfactory, he’s always said that was glad he was able to play alongside his childhood herol Didier Drogba.
  • The Belgium international comes from a football family, his father Roger Lukaku had over 20 caps for Zaire while his younger brother Jordan Lukaku, plays for Lazio. 
  • Lukaku struggled between the ages of 12 and 14 due to his size  and his mother had to always show proof of his ID  because people felt he was older than most of his mates. 
  • Lukaku made his international debut for Belgium at the age of 17 under Dick Advocaat
  • Lukaku managed only 15 appearances during his first stint with Chelsea which ended in 2014 
Romelu Lukaku in his first spell at ChelseaRomelu Lukaku in his first spell at Chelsea
Romelu Lukaku in his first spell at Chelsea | AFP via Getty Images

What has been said:

Lukaku said he was happy to have re-joined the club he supported as a child. "I came here as a kid who had a lot to learn, now I’m coming back with a lot of experience and more mature.

"I have supported Chelsea as a kid and now to be back and try to help them win more titles is an amazing feeling."

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Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia also expressed her delight in seeing the deal through: "We are absolutely delighted to be bringing him back to the club he loves, and are excited to be adding his talent to our Champions League-winning squad.”

Background

Chelsea are eager to sign a world class striker this summer and had identified Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland but the German club refused to entertain any talks.

Thomas Tuchel then quickly switched attention to the 28 year old Belgiun international who scored 87 goals for Everton between 2014 to 2017.

He also scored 42 times for Manchester United between  2017 and 2019 before moving to Inter Milan where he helped them win their first Scudetto in a decade.

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Inter Milan, like most teams in Europe, have to reduce their wage bill as clubs adjust their finances having suffered from the wreckage of the coronavirus pandemic that forced football to be played behind closed doors for almost two seasons.

Chelsea won the UEFA Champions League and Super Cup and have now turned attention to wrestling the English Premier League from Manchester City, the club they beat in Porto to win the champions league.

How Lukaku compares to other Chelsea strikers:

Lukaku’s arrival will all but bring an end to Tammy Abraham’s time at Chelsea and it remains to be seen with Roma and Westham all reported to have submitted bids for his services.

Chelsea's German striker Timo Werner challenges Villarreal's Argentinian defender Juan Foyth during the UEFA Super Cup football match.Chelsea's German striker Timo Werner challenges Villarreal's Argentinian defender Juan Foyth during the UEFA Super Cup football match.
Chelsea's German striker Timo Werner challenges Villarreal's Argentinian defender Juan Foyth during the UEFA Super Cup football match. | AFP via Getty Images

Timo Werner who arrived from Leipzig will likely be used from the wings and there are some who believe he is much better off coming from the left side of attack, allowing him to cause damage with his pace even though his finsihsing hasn’t been to the standards required.

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Then there is Champions League hero Kai Havertz who has been used as a false nine in some games but with just four league goals, you’d think his time upfront would be over now that the team has a proven goal scorer.

Romelu LukakuTimo Werner Tammy AbrahamKai Havertz 
Games played32291218
Goals 24664
Assists11813
Shots per game2.72.31.51.2
Passing accuracy72.578.872.784.9

Lukaku himself knows that if there is one club that is quick to look for solutions it’s Chelsea.

He’ll have his time as the focal point but he’ll have to hit the ground running and provide the goals that will keep Tuchel in his job and Stamford Bridge rocking, but unlike most strikers who arrive at Chelsea though, Lukaku has experience of both the club and the league and knows exactly what to expect in almost every scenario.

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