Everton striker Romelu Lukaku is “ready for a big, big move” as Chelsea and Manchester United circle, claims former Belgium manager Georges Leekens.
The Toffees frontman has netted 21 times in the Premier League this season to spark further talk of big-money transfers.
He has also snubbed the opportunity to pen fresh terms at Goodison Park as he takes aim at the grandest stages in football, including the Champions League.
Leekens feels a man he handed an international debut to in 2010 should be setting his sights high, with his strengths making him an obvious target for Europe’s top clubs.
He told the DailyMirror: “Romelu has always been ambitious and Everton aren't at level of Barcelona, a Real Madrid or a Chelsea.
“He's not a boy any more. He's confident and ready for a big, big move.”
Lukaku has completed such a move once before, with Chelsea spending £10 million to acquire his services from Anderlecht in 2011.
He was, however, to be frustrated by a lack of opportunities with the Blues, leading to him catching the eye during productive loan spells at West Brom and Everton.
Leekens acknowledges that things did not go entirely to plan for the 23-year-old at Stamford Bridge, but he remains convinced that past experiences have been beneficial to a man yet to reach his peak.
He added: “Chelsea was his dream, but it maybe came a little bit too early. Obviously he picked up some little injuries - and the level at Chelsea was very high.
“The move to Everton has been very good for him, but sometimes you have to take a step backwards to take two steps forward. You look at Kevin De Bruyne, he did the same.”