£33m Chelsea flop could replace Romelu Lukaku and repeat Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte mistake

Romelu Lukaku

AS Roma are already preparing for life without Romelu Lukaku and are reportedly considering swooping for a former Chelsea flop as his potential replacement.

Lukaku is set to return to Stamford Bridge after spending the last two seasons on loan in Serie A due to falling out with previous manager Thomas Tuchel. He returned to the club in 2021 for £97.5million but just months later, he expressed in an interview, his desire to one day return to Inter Milan.

He spent last season on loan at the San Siro, scoring 14 goals in all competitions. After returning to London, he was shipped out on loan again, this time to Roma. The Belgian forward has had a better campaign at Stadio Olimpico, contributing with 19 goals and four assists in 42 games thus far.

However, Roma will not lift the Serie A trophy with his former club Inter set for glory for the first time in three years. Although Lukaku held talks with Mauricio Pochettino after returning from his spell with Inter, he insisted on a reunion with former Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho.

At the end of the season, Lukaku is due back at Chelsea where he has another two years remaining on his contract. Pochettino has told reporters that he would consider bringing Lukaku back into the fold next season.

He explained: "He’s a Chelsea player, so for sure we will pay attention. It’s an option. But still, we did not take any decision."

However, a report by the Sun claims that the club hierarchy will look to cash in on the Belgian, while sanctioning another loan spell is not on the cards. 'Several teams' are said to be pondering offers to meet his reported £38m release clause.

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Meanwhile, the report adds that Roma are said to be considering Michy Batshuayi as Lukaku's replacement. The former Blues man joined the club as the first signing of the Antonio Conte era when he signed for £33m from Marseille and spent six years at Stamford Bridge between 2016 and 2022.

He struggled to live up to expectations, netting 25 goals in 77 appearances following Lukaku's departure to Everton two years earlier while Jose Mourinho was the the helm at Stamford Bridge. Batshuayi's form has improved in Turkey, however, with 43 goals and five assists in 72 games.