Inter forward Romelu Lukaku is reportedly facing a battle to land a starting berth for the clash with Lecce on August 26 as he’s still considered overweight.
As noted by BBC Sport, the 26-year-old sealed a £74m move to the Nerazzurri on deadline day and so joined up with his new teammates deep into pre-season preparations.
Prior to that, an injury ruled him out of featuring for Man Utd in their pre-season games, while HLN note that the Belgian international spent time training at former club Anderlecht rather than reporting back to Carrington in the days leading up to his exit.
In turn, it’s to be expected that he’s well off the pace, and as seen in the video below, he joked about the training schedule and diet in Italy as he also looked exhausted trying to catch up and make himself available for Antonio Conte as soon as possible.
— The Peoples Person (@PeoplesPerson_) August 14, 2019
However, it looks as though he may well have to start the new Serie A season on the bench when Inter face Lecce next Monday night.
According to Corriere dello Sport, Lukaku isn’t expected to be at full fitness in time, and it’s suggested that he’s still weighing in at over 100 kilos.
For the reasons explained above, it’s understandable as to why he would be ‘out of shape’, but evidently he’s working hard to ensure that he’s in a position to be a key figure for Inter as soon as possible. Credit must be given to him as well given it’s added by CdS that he’s even working on his days off to get his fitness up.
It’s added in the report above that his increased muscle mass as he gets older could be a contributing factor, and so Conte and the Inter medical team will undoubtedly be doing their bit to get him at optimal fitness levels to ensure he can be a decisive figure this season, but perhaps not as soon as the Lecce game.