Todd Boehly has been handed a headache ahead of the upcoming transfer window regarding the future of Romelu Lukaku. The 28-year-old has been linked with an exit from Chelsea this summer after struggling to acclimatize to life back in the Premier League.
The Belgium international found the net just 17 times in 44 appearances this season, failing to warrant the entirety of its record-breaking £ 97.5million switch. And, his overriding misfortune in front of goal saw him relegated to the bench, with Kai Havertz often preferred in a false-nine role.
Lukaku, who is now valued at around £ 59million by CIES Football Observatory, has split with his agent in an attempt to push through a transfer away from Chelsea, according to the Mirror. The striker is claimed to have turned to lawyer Sebastien Ledure, who is said to already be in negotiations with Inter director Beppe Marotta over a potential return to Inter Milan, albeit an unlikely prospect at present.
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His desire to return to the San Siro follows the infamous bombshell interview that he conducted with Sky Italia just weeks before the January transfer window opened. Lukaku expressed his love for Inter and their fans, even telling former-teammate Lautaro Martinez to stay put amid rumors tying him with an exit from the Italian giants.
Ironically, in what could be an attempt to retain the Belgian’s services, Chelsea have reportedly registered new interest in Martinez ahead of the summer. According to The Athletic, the Blues are eager to sign the Argentine striker.
So with that in mind, football.london take a look at how Thomas Tuchel could lineup next season with Martinez and Lukaku reunited on the frontline.
Tuchel used a 3-4-1-2 on several occasions this season. It proved relatively successful, though it was often Kai Havertz alongside Timo Werner or Lukaku with Mason Mount in the number ten role.
But, more importantly, Martinez and Lukaku operated in a front-two at Inter. The duo, who had a great understanding of one another’s movement, ran riot in Serie A.
With the ability of Ben Chilwell and Reece James in the wide spaces, Tuchel will be crowned with a deadly, interchangeable trident that could cause havoc.
A more familiar shape used by Tuchel at Chelsea, though it hasn’t proven successful with Lukaku spearing the frontline. But, with Martinez, the Belgian could enjoy greater success.
A close-knit front three, as pictured above, will take Chelsea close to competing with Liverpool and Manchester City. Tuchel has a playmaker, a forward-runner with a creative spark and a finisher.
A formation which hasn’t appeared much at Chelsea under Tuchel, but one that proved successful for the German boss prior to his west London ventures. Very attacking, yes, but with a strong double pivot and the work-rate of Mount, if tuned to perfection, the Blues have a winning formula.
As aforementioned, Lukaku and Martinez worked well as a front-two at Inter, with the latter often dropping off. A very ambitious lineup, but one that could open the flood gates if Chelsea are in desperate need of a goal.