Romelu Lukaku is tipped for big things
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The front page of Spanish sports newspaper Marca featured a picture of Anderlecht’s highly-rated youngster Romelu Lukaku on Tuesday alongside the caption: “Mourinho’s secret dream.”
It is hardly a secret that 17-year-old Lukaku is in all the big clubs’ sights after his splendid first professional season, which saw him crowned Belgium’s youngest ever top scorer and get a couple of good goals in Europe. It is not the first time either that Marca has put Belgian players on display like this. Last year, it was Standard’s Steven Defour and, in April, Eden Hazard of Lille was linked to the Madrid giants. So even if Marca claim Real want Lukaku even more than other targets such as Hugo Almeida, Mario Gomez, Amauri or Fernando Llorente, it remains to be seen whether the young striker actually does leave Anderlecht this season.
Lukaku’s agent, Christophe Henrotay, says that while he did speak to Real about Lukaku, this is only because they are keeping tabs on him. “There is no rush in signing him. Liverpool, Chelsea, Barcelona and other big clubs are also following Romelu, but that does not mean they want to get him right away,” Henrotay says in Belgian newspaper De Morgen. “If Anderlecht get past Partizan Belgrade and into the Champions League proper, he can learn a lot at the highest level.”
Then there is the question of whether Romelu is too young to move to such an elite team such as Real. Father and former pro Roger Lukaku is sober and laidback about the rumours, saying he is pleased at Real Madrid and Mourinho’s interest. “For us, it is important that Romelu finishes school. He has one more year to go, after which he will still only be 18 and there will be ample time to move abroad. But you never know. In the end, Anderlecht will have to decide, given that Romelu has just signed a new five year contract with them. There will be no surprises as we have clear agreements on how a move away would be handled.”
Anderlecht manager Herman Van Holsbeeck says the club are “flattered at the proof of international recognition for one of their players. It is an honour for our club that Real wants one of our players - it means recognition for our youth academy and the way we coach our young talents.” Van Holsbeeck adds, however, that "no concrete offers have yet been made for Lukaku, not by Real Madrid nor any other club.”
Interestingly, little under a month ago, Chelsea’s Didier Drogba was reported to have called Romelu Lukaku, urging him to sign for the London club if he left Anderlecht. Chelsea are father Roger’s favourite as far as a transfer goes, while Romelu is known to be a big fan of the Chelsea striker. To be continued…