Expect transfer update next week, says Romelu Lukaku, Latest Football News - The New Paper

Expect transfer update next week, says Romelu Lukaku

Inter Milan chief executive Marotta 'optimistic' about move for the Belgian

Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku has made his first comments regarding a prospective move away from Old Trafford, suggesting that there could be an update this week.

The 26-year-old was speaking in Australia, after United's 2-0 win over Perth Glory, during which he did not feature.

Inter Milan are keen on the Belgian, with new coach Antonio Conte having tried to sign the striker when he was Chelsea manager.

Conte seems intent on not missing out on Lukaku again - he has left out Mauro Icardi from Inter's pre-season training camp in Switzerland, leaving Lautaro Martinez as the only senior striker at the club.

Icardi has been the club's top scorer for the last five seasons, scoring 115 goals in 196 matches.

When asked about the transfer speculation, Lukaku told the media: "You guys will know something next week."

When asked if Lukaku will be at the club come the start of the season, United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: "Let's see when the season starts.

"We've not had any bids that we're considering. All my conversations with the players, I will keep confidential.

"That's between us - that's my privilege.

"There's been so much speculation, but yes he should be fit for (the match against Leeds United on) Wednesday. He trained with the team yesterday but he wasn't useful today."

Last week, Inter's sporting director Piero Ausilio travelled to London to discuss a deal for United's No.9, but reports have since emerged that both Inter's offer price of 70 million euros (S$107m) and their plan to structure payments over two or three years have not sat well with United.

However, Inter chief executive Giuseppe Marotta remains confident of the move, telling reporters: "Yes, I am optimistic about everything."

This comes after his comments last week, when he said that the club "cannot rush" the Lukaku deal.


Belgium's all-time top scorer found the net just 15 times for United in all competitions last season, his worst return since moving to the English Premier League to join Chelsea in 2011.

The man who handed Lukaku his international debut, Georges Leekens, believes Solskjaer is to blame for that.

He was quoted in the Daily Mirror as saying: "He's a fantastic footballer, but the change of coach at Manchester (United) hasn't worked well for him.

"He looked released when he played for Belgium, and you saw that in the way he played and scored in the recent qualifiers against Kazakhstan and Scotland.

"He needs confidence, he needs to feel wanted. When you hesitate over picking him, he feels it and he doesn't forget it.

"The moment he feels there's a doubt over him, he won't hesitate to do what he thinks is best.

"Now I think it's the right moment for him to go to Italy, to a country where the football is more tactical.

"He will like to take a little bit of revenge - and show Manchester United what they have been missing."

Former United midfielder Kleberson, too, believes the Red Devils could miss Lukaku if he leaves Old Trafford.

He said: "If Romelu Lukaku is to leave the club, it will be a big loss for Manchester United.

"I'm a big fan of Lukaku, he's a great player...

"If he starts up top, you can play off him and help the midfield and other forwards to score more goals.

"He can also drift out wide and cause problems for defenders there, he killed Brazil in the game at the World Cup from doing this, and he's very unpredictable."