The Belgium international endured a difficult period at Manchester United under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who deemed Lukaku incompatible with the style of football he was attempting to implement at Old Trafford.
Lukaku subsequently joined Inter and, under the tutelage of Antonio Conte, the manager who once attempted to bring him to Chelsea, his confidence was restored and rebuilt his reputation as one of Europe’s most prolific strikers.
The 28-year-old spearheaded Inter’s Serie A title-winning campaign last season, their first in a decade, and claimed he remained committed to the Serie A champions, despite their grim financial plight that, in part, led to Conte’s departure.
Chelsea, meanwhile, had identified their former striker, who failed to make the grade in west London after arriving as a raw teenager from Anderlecht, as the ideal candidate to fill the glaring hole in a squad which had just won the Champions League.
The Blues made several offers for Lukaku over the course of the summer window, offering the likes of Marcos Alonso and Davide Zappacosta in part exchange, and it wasn’t until the third time of asking that the striker took matters into his own hands and asked Conte’s replacement, Simone Inzaghi, to help him seal a return to west London.
‘When Chelsea made their third offer I knew it was serious and I was no longer with my head in Milan,’ Lukaku told HLN.
‘Chelsea offered €110m plus Zappacosta, but Inter said no. So I told Inzaghi: Inter pulled me out of shit but I wanna leave only because of Chelsea.
‘I didn’t want to go behind Inter’s back. They got me out of the shit. I was in a deep hole at Man United.
‘After training I went to Inzaghi’s office. I didn’t want to ruin the atmosphere because I was no longer with my head in Milan. So I asked him: please find an agreement.’
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