Former Chelsea assistant manager Gianfranco Zola feels that Romelu Lukaku would fit in well at Inter Milan under Antonio Conte.
Lukaku is Conte’s primary transfer target but Manchester United are demanding £75million (€83m) for the Belgian striker, according to the Sun. Inter’s Sporting Director Piero Ausilio told Sky Italia nearly two weeks back that the Nerazzurri have made an official approach for Lukaku, saying: “It was an official contact as it should be between two important clubs like Inter and Manchester.”
A report from Gazzetta dello Sport claimed that Inter Milan were not willing to pay United’s asking price for Lukaku and would instead pay €60-65m and add a player as part of the deal.
The Nerazzurri made a bid of £54m for the 26-year-old striker which Man Utd rejected, according to ESPN.
Discussing the potential deal, Gianfranco Zola feels that the Belgium international has the right attributes to play under Conte. Speaking to FCInterNews, the former Italy international said: “In addition to the purchases already made, I read that Lukaku could also arrive. He would certainly be a player of great impact, he has the right characteristics for the game of Conte and he is a striker who, coming from a championship like the English one, could find so many advantages in Italy: At the physical and athletic level, the Premier League is preparing you really well right now and I am sure it can have a big impact in the Italian championship.”
Lukaku had a pretty underwhelming 18/19 season at Old Trafford, scoring only 15 goals in 45 appearances. The Belgium international hasn’t featured for the Red Devils in their pre-season games so far and there’s no telling whether he will be a regular under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer next season.
A move to Inter Milan will certainly be useful for Lukaku as he should be a starter under Conte. However, Inter will first have to meet United’s valuation of the 26-year-old.
Conte himself has confirmed his interest in the player. As quoted by the Telegraph, Conte said: “Lukaku is United’s player and this is the reality. You know very well that I like this player but also in the past when I was Chelsea’s coach and tried to bring him to Chelsea. I think today Lukaku is a player with United. This is the reality.
“I think that in this moment if you’re talking about a player from another club it’s right to not talk about Lukaku because we have great respect for United.”