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Romelu Lukaku
Gender Male
Ethnic Belgian
Job Belgian Footballer
Desc Lukaku swapped Manchester United for Inter Milan in the summer and is flying in Italy. He’s scored 14 goals in 22 appearances for the San Siro side since his move

Affiliation

Org Belgia National Team
Club as Player Inter Milan
  Manchester United
  Everton FC
  Chelsea FC

Relationship

Agent Federico Pastorello

2013 09 29 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku on himself] I watch every single game in the Premier League - [the full] 90 minutes. I take my time to study and to learn other strikers’ movements and to learn about other defenders. I want to be one of the best in this league, so you can only learn from the best by watching the best. After training I go home and record every game. I have a satellite and I just watch the games. My aim is to go down as one of the greatest

2016 01 09 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku on taking his mother’s advice to join the Toffees] He (Martinez) actually called me three times and I didn’t pick up on the first two, so I’m glad I answered eventually. I discussed it with him, I spoke to Chelsea, I spoke to my mother, and eventually she said: ‘Go to Everton.’ I haven’t regretted it

2016 08 27 Retrieve

[Everton forward Romelu Lukaku talks about his football heroes] Drogba, Anelka, Brazilian Ronaldo, Adriano at his peak at Inter was unbelievable. The step overs from Brazilian Ronaldo, every now and then I’ll do a step over real quick and have a shot. Anelka, his off-the-ball runs, I love Thierry Henry as well, for me those two had the best off-the-ball runs in behind I’ve ever seen. Drogba’s leadership, mentality and his big goals, his big, big goals, and Adriano’s power on the pitch. I’ve never seen something like that, it’s very sad that he ended like he did but for me, at his peak, he took the striker’s dimension to another level

2016 11 12 Retrieve

[Belgium forward Romelu Lukaku talks about Thierry Henry’s influence on him as assistant coach of Les Diables Rouges] It’s not easy with him, he’s very demanding. I hadn’t experienced that before. Even when I make a good pass, if the ball bobbles a little bit, he pulls me up on it. I think he sees in me characteristics he also had when he was younger. That’s why he’s so intransigent with me. Thanks to him, I’m more intelligent in my movement, and so I’m caught offside less. He’s also teaching me things about finishing, controlling the ball and how I see the game. Back in the day, he made ten assists a season, I’d like to emulate him

2017 07 15 Retrieve

[New Manchester United signing Romelu Lukaku talks about the reasoning behind his new number] I always asked my mother what number, and I used to play with the No 10 because my mother’s birthday is on 10 October, so it’s the tenth month of the year. That’s why I played with No 10. I asked for the No 9 because I’m a striker. Strikers play with No 9. It’s a nice number, and I asked the permission of Zlatan Ibrahimovic. I want to thank him, as well, for allowing me to wear that number

2018 10 20 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has told Thierry Henry that he aims to break the Frenchman’s record of 175 Premier League goals] Now I’m talking to Thierry Henry saying: ‘I’m coming for you on 175!’ I’m laughing saying it to him but, deep down, inside he knows I’m dead serious!

2019 03 23 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku on Zlatan Ibrahimovic who taught a valuable lesson while at Manchester United] I remember one training session. Because we were both strikers, we were never on the same team and, at one point, there was a 50/50 challenge. He went full-on against me! That is why he changed me. It was an eye-opener. The guy had to fight to be in the position he is in

2019 06 12 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku said he expects a ‘busy summer’ as he cast doubts over his Manchester United future amid growing links to Inter] I have a contract with Man United. I’ll speak with my club and my agent Federico Pastorello to make the best decision. I am going to enjoy my holidays with my family now. I know what I’ll do but won’t say it. We’ll see. If I expect a busy summer? Yes.

2019 06 12b Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has revealed he would jump at the chance to work with Antonio Conte at Inter Milan] Well, Conte has gone to Inter, for me he is the best coach in the world. With regards to my future, I have already made a decision that I still cannot reveal publicly, out of respect to Manchester United with whom I still have a contract.

[Lukaku went on to reveal his admiration for the Italian top flight] I am a big Serie A fan, those close to me know that I have always wanted to play in the English league and in the Italian: I love Italy. And then Cristiano Ronaldo arrived, Maurizio Sarri is going to Juventus, [Carlo] Ancelotti will be at Napoli: Serie A will be exciting. My club and agent will talk about [the transfer bid], but my mind is made up. I have a contract with Manchester United, it is up to them to decide. I will speak to the club and my agent to make the best decision. In any case, I am sure that it will be a very busy summer

: 2019 06 21 Scapegoat Romelu Lukaku has been disrespected at Man Utd. It is baffling why United fans would be happy to see the back of him. The problem isn’t that he’s not good enough, it’s that the team around him simply cannot provide him the service he needs. He has proven - time and again - that when he gets the ball in the right areas he will score

: 2019 06 25 Romelu Lukaku’s agent Federico Pastorello has confirmed that Inter Milan are trying to sign the Manchester United striker this summer

: 2019 07 05 Wissam Ben Yedder continues to be linked with a move away from Sevilla, with the France forward reportedly a target for Manchester United should they sell Romelu Lukaku.

: 2019 07 08 Unsmiling Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku have been photographed heading on Manchester United’s tour of Asia, despite speculation of transfers away from Old Trafford.

2019 07 11 Retrieve

[Manchester United and Intermilan have begun negotiations regarding the sale of Romelu Lukaku to the Italian club] It is good that Conte went to Inter, for me, he is the best coach in the world. As for my future, I have already made a decision that I still cannot communicate publicly out of respect for Manchester United with whom I have a contract. I am a big Serie A fan, those close to me know that I have always wanted to play in the English league and in the Italian one, I love Italy. The club and my agent will talk about it but I have already made my decision

: 2019 07 12 Intermilan sporting director Piero Ausilio confirmed the Serie A club have made an ‘official approach’ to Manchester United for Romelu Lukaku.

2019 07 13 Retrieve

[The future of Romelu Lukaku at Manchester United remains firmly up in the air] You guys [the media] will know something next week

Let’s see when the season starts. We’ve not had any bids that we’re considering. All my conversations with the players I will keep confidential. That’s between us - that’s my privilege. There’s been so much speculation but yes he should be fit for Wednesday. He trained with the team yesterday but he wasn’t useful today

: 2019 07 29 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has not included Romelu Lukaku in his latest squad for their friendly with Kristiansund on Tuesday amid ongoing speculation linking him with a move to Intermilan.

: 2019 07 31 Paulo Dybala for Romelu Lukaku? Lukaku has become a £75 million makeweight at Old Trafford, with his 42 goals in two seasons not proving enough to persuade Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that he should be favoured over Marcus Rashford in the number-nine position

: 2019 08 02 Romelu Lukaku isn’t short of pace, and he has the data to prove it. Diogo Dalot was at the head of the pack with a top speed of 36.43kph, with Lukaku just behind him on 36.25kph. Tahith Chong, Marcus Rashford and new signing Daniel James, renowned for his explosive pace, rounded off the top five

: 2019 08 05 Manchester United’s interest in Mario Mandzukic has been cooled following the end of talks between the club and Juventus over a swap deal involving Paulo Dybala and Romelu Lukaku. Mandzukic was being offered by Juve along with Dybala as a makeweight in their bid to usurp Serie A rivals Inter to the signature of Belgium striker Lukaku.

: 2019 08 05b Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku spent Monday training with Anderlecht as reports regarding his future and a potential Old Trafford exit continue

: 2019 08 07 Manchester United and Intermilan are continuing discussions regarding the transfer of Romelu Lukaku amid reports that the Belgian striker has been fined by the Old Trafford club

: 2019 08 08 Romelu Lukaku has completed an €80 million move to Intermilan from Manchester United, putting an end to a summer saga that sees the striker join forces with long-time admirer Antonio Conte.

2019 08 08b Retrieve

[Lukaku made an appeal for a better understanding of his needs from his United team-mates when asked to address his lack of goals. He told reporters in October 2018] With Belgium I’ve been playing for 10 years, since I was 16. Players know me much more. Here, I still think my teamwork between myself and my team-mates can improve and be much better. It’s something that we’re working on. The players need to know me and know my movement. When that starts clicking I think the results I have with Belgium will also come here

2019 08 09 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku said Intermilan were the only club he wanted as the Belgian striker thanked Manchester United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in a farewell message] Inter were the only club I wanted, because Inter is Not For Everyone. I’m here to bring the Nerazzurri back to the top. I’m really happy to be here! Thank you for the support. Forza Inter

To everyone involved with Manchester United - from the board to the manager and his staff, the players, and the fans. Thank you and good luck for the future @manchesterunited

2019 08 13 Retrieve

[Intermilan striker Romelu Lukaku has aimed a dig at the Premier League, saying that unlike in England, training in Serie A is real work] It’s hard man. It’s different. In England, it’s a lot of work. But over here, it’s real work

[But the Belgian appears happy to have made the move to Italy, though he doesn’t seem too interested in seeing the sights in Milan] The city is nice. I don’t mind. I didn’t come to live. I came here to help the team achieve something

2019 08 21 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has hit out at Manchester United for not doing enough to protect him in the media and claims he, Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez were continually made scapegoats] They have to find somebody. It is Pogba, it is me or it is Alexis. It’s the three of us all the time. They have got to find somebody to blame. I put my hand up, like, this year I don’t think I was the only one playing bad. A lot of people were playing bad but they had to find the culprit. If they want to put the blame on me, you know what, f* it, do what you gotta do. I think the team has so much potential to do some great stuff. There is a lot of talent. But it is not only talent; you really have to build a team

[Lukaku also took issue with suggestions he did not suit Solskjaer’s intended style of play] A lot of people don’t think I should be part of that system. That’s my feeling from the conversations that I have. I just know. For me, the thing that makes me laugh a lot is: how the hell is s
* going bad in my team, but when I play in my national team, it’s good? And I’m happy. I didn’t play the last six weeks of the league, like the last three weeks or something before the end of the season and then I had another three weeks off before I had to play for the national team, and then we go and play with the Belgium team. And nobody there complains because I think the perception in my country is changing slightly. A lot of people were saying a lot of stuff. For me, it took years for a lot of people to change their perception. Man U might not get that time. It’s s* that it happens like that

When I go and play for my country, we play the style of play that we want to play probably with Man United and I do well over there. So is it me? Four goals in the World Cup, three weeks ago I scored three goals in two games, and before that we played Switzerland and Iceland in September and I scored four goals in two games. I’ve scored 48 goals for my country. We all know that international soccer is different than club football but the playing style we play in the national team is the one we want to play at Man United. So is it me? Or do we need to have a conversation from man to man and tell each other the rules?

[Lukaku added that he felt United did not do enough to defend him] I think a lot of stuff has been said where I didn’t feel protected. A lot of rumours, ‘Rom is going to go there, they don’t want Rom’ and nobody came out and shot it down. It was for a good three, four weeks. I’m waiting for someone to come out and shut it down. It didn’t happen. I had my conversation, told them it was better to go our separate ways. I just wanted you to say, ‘Rom is going to fight for his place’, but it never happened for four, five months. It was all, ‘He’s got to go, he doesn’t deserve to be there’. Well, okay, then I want to go now. There is fighting for your position, but also being somewhere that people want you to be. If you’re happy, you find a way, it doesn’t matter if you’re on the bench or starting. But nobody told me that was the situation, so I thought for two, three weeks to analyse, see all this s
* coming out in the media. Who leaks it? Not me. Not my agent. I see it on my phone come out of nowhere. I told them, ‘It’s not good for me to be at a place where I’m not wanted’

2019 08 22 Retrieve

[A return to west London was on the cards that summer before Manchester United swooped in] I was gone, I was going to Chelsea. I was looking for an apartment, an apartment for my mum to stay in close to the practice facility, so I don’t have to drive too far. And then Man U came. At Man U everybody was… I felt the trust more, where everybody wanted me to be there and that’s the true story. People say ‘Yeah, my agent [Mino Raiola]’ and stuff like that - my former agent at the time - he did his job, he got the best opportunity for me, but the people wanted me the most and that was Man U. Everybody was wanting me. There was no doubting. They came and they told me - I was in New York - I get a phone call from this number and I’m like, ‘Who’s this?’ Pick up, Jose Mourinho. ‘Rom, how are you doing?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, what’s up, boss?’. ‘I’m gonna get you back, we’re gonna pay £75m plus £15m in bonuses by next week, so I expect you in LA. So go and do your s*** in LA and I’ll see you after [in pre-season]’. I felt the dude was lying, like ‘I’ll see you’. Then the next thing I know, I wake up and had to go back to Everton on the July 7 and July 6, I wake up in the morning and I see they’ve agreed the deal, so I’m like, ‘Man! They came in hard!

[Lukaku added on linking back up with Mourinho] When [I was at United], I remember we were in Moscow two years ago, we played CSKA, I told him, ‘Yo man, I wanted to kill your arse so bad’ and we laughed about it. Me and Jose our relationship is… everybody has their own personal relationship with him, but me and him we bump heads. We bump heads, but I love him as a man. I think he loves me as a man, but we bump heads all the time. All the time. He might be picking on me, but then I’ll be picking on him. But he’s my guy, for sure, he’s my guy

2019 08 31 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has fired back at pundit Gary Neville for questioning his professionalism, citing the praise of his former coaches as proof of his commitment to the game] Don’t question my professionalism. I live for this game. I am at home all the time. I try to do everything to improve. He (Neville) can talk about my fitness but he should never say anything about my professionalism, that I don’t work hard enough. That is something he cannot say. All the coaches I have had say the same thing about me. What did Ole Gunnar Solskjaer say when I was on the training ground? What did he say? That I always work hard and always do my best to try and improve myself. Same with Jose Mourinho and Roberto Martinez. Now Antonio Conte will say it. Last year was just a bad year. It happens in football. You just have to move on. I am not going to sit here and react in a negative way. We are grown men. He is a pundit. He gets paid to say this kind of stuff. I am paid to play football. I just want to do my best for Inter Milan. That is it

I was training by myself for the last couple of weeks in Manchester with one of the physical coaches. From Singapore until I moved here, I was basically only doing running and not training on the pitch. When I got here they asked me what I had been doing. I had not done any group training, only running, so we kept the running part going. They introduced me to the group exercises and then they organised some friendlies and that was it. When I arrived, the first four days were about building up the physical aspect, getting as fit as possible for the first game - do a lot of physical work and adapt tactically to what he (Conte) wants on the pitch. How we play involves a lot of pressing, being in the right positions. You have to be alert and sharp in training

[When asked if he knew why United thought he had a fitness issue] No

2019 08 31b Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has admitted he does not know why his tenure at Manchester United did not work out] I don’t know. I don’t try to look back at it. The way I look at it is that I beat all the odds. Coming from where I came from, growing up the way that I did, I think I beat the odds. No-one thought I would do the steps I have in my life as a professional footballer, only me and my family. For me, the Manchester United experience is one I am grateful for - not a good one because we didn’t win and I wanted to win with the club - but they gave me a chance. I got to play for one of the biggest clubs in the world, so I will always be respectful to them. At the end, I thought it was better for me to move on and try different things. I wish them well for the future. Now I am on my own path and I am very happy in Serie A

It is a good move for Alexis Sanchez. He played in this league before. The people here know him. In the Premier League he did really well when he was at Arsenal. He has had a difficult time at Manchester United. Coming here was the right move, in a good dressing room, where the manager wants winners who can really help the team. He is going to be part of that. He is going to add a lot of competition to the squad we already have. Now it is up to him to show it. I really believe he is going to do well for us. We are here to help him out. Hopefully, he can add that little spark to our team

2019 09 01 Retrieve

[Gary Neville has urged Manchester United to sign players who want to play for the club. Lukaku hit back at the former Red Devils defender] He can talk about my fitness but he should never say anything about my professionalism, that I don’t work hard enough. That is something he cannot say. All the coaches I have had say the same thing about me

2019 09 02 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku revelled in his goalscoring display to lead Inter to a second successive Serie A win, despite being the victim of racial abuse against Cagliari] I’m very happy about these first two league victories and about tonight’s success. It was a tough match, we had to fight but that’s what we’ll have to do in every game, I’m happy for the team and for our fans. To score wearing this shirt is a great feeling, I want to help the team even more, through assists too. The goal is to continue like this

[On his partnership with Martinez, Lukaku believes they’ll keep working better together over time] It’s improving week after week and I’m happy about his goal, which was important for us. Now there will be a break for national team commitments, it will be important that we all come back in good condition and then work best in preparation for the matches at San Siro against Udinese and Slavia Prague [in the Champions League]

2019 09 02b Retrieve

[Inter striker Romelu Lukaku has called on football federations and social media companies to do more to tackle racism after he suffered abuse during Sunday’s Serie A game against Cagliari] Many players in the last month have suffered from racial abuse. I did yesterday too. Football is a game to be enjoyed by everyone and we shouldn’t accept any form of discrimination that will put our game in shame. I hope the football federations all over world react strongly on all cases of discrimination! Social media platforms (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook…) need to work better as well with football clubs because everyday you see at least a racist comment under a post of a person of colour. We’ve been saying it for years and still no action. Ladies and gentleman, it’s 2019 instead of going forward we’re going backwards and I think as players we need unify and make a statement on this matter to keep this game clean and enjoyable for everyone

2019 09 02c Retrieve

[The Rossoblu were at it again on Monday, when they released a statement addressing the abuse aimed at Romeru Lukaku] Cagliari does not want to underplay what occurred last night, it endorses the respectable moral values of its people from all the stadium sections. But firmly rejects the outrageous charge and silly stereotypes addressed to Cagliari supporters and the Sardinian people, which are absolutely unacceptable

[The club expressed its intent to] to identify, isolate and ban those ignorant individuals whose shameful actions and behaviours are completely against those values that Cagliari strongly promotes in all their initiatives

[The one thing that Cagliari did get right on Monday was claim that everyone has a responsibility to partake in the fight against racism] We believe our commitment needs a real support by the rest of the football stakeholders starting from all the true supporters, to all the stewards in the stands, from police and security agents, passing to media and as well through Lega Serie A and FIGC.

2019 09 03 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku was happy to head for the exits at Old Trafford, with it suggested that he, Sanchez and Paul Pogba had become scapegoats for the recent struggles endured by the Red Devils] It is Pogba, it is me or it is Alexis. It’s the three of us all the time. They have got to find somebody to blame. I put my hand up, like, this year I don’t think I was the only one playing bad. A lot of people were playing bad but they had to find the culprit. If they want to put the blame on me, you know what, f*ck it, do what you gotta do. I think the team has so much potential to do some great stuff. There is a lot of talent. But it is not only talent; you really have to build a team

2019 09 03b Retrieve

[Curva Nord fans at San Siro - a vocal section of the Inter support - have responded to Lukaku’s comments with an open letter addressed to their club’s new signing. The supporters defended Cagliari and claimed racism is not a real problem in Italy] Hi Romelu. We are writing to you on behalf of the Curva Nord; yes, the guys who welcomed you on your arrival in Milan. We are really sorry you thought that what happened in Cagliari was racist. You have to understand that Italy is not like many other north European countries where racism is a real problem

[The group continue, claiming such chants are common to ‘help our teams’] We are not racist and so nor are the Cagliari fans

Please consider this attitude of Italian fans as a form of respect for the fact they are afraid of you for the goals you might score against their teams and not because they hate you or they are racist

2019 09 10 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has described himself as a killer on the field as he approaches his 50th international goal for Belgium] I’ll get to that 50th goal. I have to say that I was more concerned with the 30th, when I was able to break the record. I don’t dream about the 50. I really don’t. I’m relaxed. I am a killer on the field, but not next to it. I was happy with that goal. It was a long time ago that we had scored another goal on the counter. If we can play like this, we are deadly. The best counter-attacking team in the world

[After seeing Kevin De Bruyne set up three of Belgium’s goals, Lukaku also turned provider against Scotland and was impressed by his team-mate’s sweet first-time finish] I am happy that I could give an assist to De Bruyne. He finished it nicely. The finish was more beautiful than the pass itself

2019 09 12 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku says he was scapegoated during his time at Manchester United] Scapegoated. Meaning ‘You. Are. The. Reason. This could be the team I need. There’s the love I have for this area. The love that I have for Inter. And it was the perfect moment for me to leave England. I didn’t want to be there anymore

[Lukaku was criticised for a perceived weight problem] Normally I have a fine digestive system. I digest everything very quickly. That’s how it had been my entire life. But what the nutritionist said to me was it had stopped working. I’m good now. My body is in the zone

[Now happy in Milan, the Belgium international believes the set up at Intermilan is perfect for mounting a campaign to dethrone perennial Scudetto winners Juventus] The group of players we have here is a special group. And we have the right leader in front of us take us to the right places. Inter is an ambitious club. It wants to get back where it needs to be. I want to help them build something here. It’s the right move for me

[The former Everton man revealed that Conte had been courting him for years, starting when he was 21. According to Lukaku, Conte said ‘come play for me’, as he was moving to Merseyside, while the coach was at Juventus] In the end, I told him, ‘I’m not coming to you now. But the next opportunity, I will be there’

2019 09 17 Retrieve

[Luciano Passirani who claimed Lukaku can only be stopped with 10 bananas denies he’s racist] I don’t see any other player in Italy now like Lukaku. […] I really like him. The only way to stop him is to say, ‘Here are 10 bananas that you can eat’

2019 09 17b Retrieve

[Programme director Fabio Ravezzani on Luciano Passirani’s banana joke] Mr Passirani is 80 years old and to compliment Lukaku he used a metaphor that turned out to be racist. I think it was a terrible lack of momentary lucidity. I cannot tolerate any kind of errors, even if momentary

2019 09 17c Retrieve

[Passirani has now attempted to set the record straight and says he would like the opportunity to apologise in person to Lukaku] I have been in the world of football for 40 years and have never received a suspension for behaviour in any of the roles I have held, but I accept the decision made against me

I would not like to pass for a racist. My partner who has lived with me for 17 years is black, I have two black granddaughters. I am not a racist and I believe I am an educated person in every respect. In my career I met so many black players and I never had any problems

2019 09 17d Retrieve

[He was the target of abuse in Intermilan’s win over Cagliari at the start of September. Monkey chants could be heard as the Belgium striker converted a penalty in the 2-1 win, with Lukaku posting on Instagram afterwards] Football is a game to be enjoyed and we shouldn’t accept any form of discrimination that will put our game in shame. Ladies and gentlemen it’s 2019 - instead of going forwards we’re going backwards

2019 09 17e Retrieve

[Cagliari to face no punishment for racist Romelu Lukaku chants] The Cagliari Police have indicated that in the phase before the penalty kick, and only on that occasion, from the Curva Nord section, usually occupied by the home supporters, there have been chants, shouts and whistles towards Lukaku, who was preparing to take the penalty kick.

From the area on the left looking towards the goal some chants were perceived by individual spectators but they were not noted by the service staff, nor from the collaborators of the federal prosecutor, as discriminatory, because of the whistles and screams mentioned above. The assumptions cannot be proved, in terms of size and real perception

2019 09 20 Retrieve

[Following the game against Cagliari during which he was subjected to monkey chants, Lukaku released a statement which said] As players we need to unify and make a statement on this matter. Many players in the last month have suffered from racial abuse … I did yesterday too. Football is a game to be enjoyed and we shouldn’t accept any form of discrimination that will put our game in shame. Ladies and gentlemen it’s 2019 - instead of going forwards we’re going backwards. I hope the football federations all over the world react strongly on all cases of discrimination

2019 09 21 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku hailed his relationship with head coach Antonio Conte after scoring in Intermilan’s 2-0 derby victory over city rivals AC Milan] My relationship with Conte is very strong. He is a coach who really helps me. At the age of 26, I want a coach like this, who motivates and helps me every day. I am very happy to be here and to be working with him. This match is very important for us and we are pleased with the three points. The game with Slavia Prague was difficult, but we prepared well and gave a strong reply

2019 09 30 Retrieve

[Inter’s Curva Nord organisation - the club’s primary ultra organisation - gained attention when they came to the defence of Cagliari fans who racially abused Romelu Lukaku during a Serie A fixture at Sardegna Arena in early September 2019] Open letter to Romelu Lukaku. Italians are not racist. You have to understand that Italy is not like many other north European countries where racism is a REAL problem. In Italy we use some ‘ways’ only to ‘help our teams’ and to try to make our opponents nervous, not for racism but to mess them up

After the latest theatre show surrounding ultras’ apparent racism by those who want to pick up the easy popularity points which are borne out of ignorance, Milan’s Curva Nord has once again decided to repeat the difference between real racism and the instrumented version which do not concern the ultras – as all the fake moralists out there love to make out in order to create needless panic and freely condemn our world…

2019 11 15 Retrieve

[Lukaku not surprised by racism in Serie A as Inter star says UEFA ‘must act’] I knew that sooner or later it would happen. I was ready for it, because before coming here I spoke with some friends who played in Serie A and they warned me about it. At Cagliari it was a difficult moment. Serie A and UEFA had to do more. UEFA must act. We can promote a ‘No To Racism’ campaign, but if we do nothing to counter this phenomenon, it makes no sense

I’m having fun in Italy. People on the street are very kind to me and my family likes it here too. I want to concentrate on this. When I’m not playing well, I want [Conte] to tell me about it. I’m 26, I know I can improve

[Lukaku had been a slight doubt for the Russia game, but he says he is raring to go ahead of Saturday’s match] I’m fine now. I got a knock against Dortmund a few weeks ago, but now it’s much better. If Martinez will let me play in the game, I will be happy to give my contribution. Tomorrow will not be easy, but we won’t be lacking motivation. We want to get a positive result

2019 11 16 Retrieve

[Lukaku: Solskjaer wanted me to stay but I made decision to leave Man Utd in March] Solskjaer has my eternal respect. He understood me when I said in March that it was time for me to leave England. I have been in the Premier League as an 18-year-old boy and now I am 26. Solskjaer wanted to keep me, but I was ready for something new

[Lukaku is enjoying worked under the former Juventus and Chelsea boss, with the Italian’s tactical approach considered to suit his game] I have had a good relationship with trainer Antonio Conte for three years and I know exactly what he expects of me. The first two weeks at Inter I worked very hard with the group and when my teammates got some rest, I trained individually. Thanks to my football intelligence, I integrated easily. We play in a system with two strikers and that suits me. Anyway, I already knew my team-mates in advance

2019 11 28 Retrieve

[Lukaku demands UEFA action on racist abuse from ‘whole stadium’ at Slavia Prague] I said it last time when I was with the national team. UEFA now has to do something about it, because things like this in stadiums is not right. Today it happened twice with me and that is not right with people. We are in 2019, there are many players with many different nationalities in their teams. When there are people that for me are bad, at the stadium, that’s not a good example for the kids. I hope that UEFA now do something about it, because the whole stadium did it when Lautaro scored the first goal, and that’s not good for the people watching this game

2019 11 29 Retrieve

[Slavia Prague have hit out at Inter striker Romelu Lukaku following his complaint that he was racially abused during the midweek Champions League fixture between the clubs] I said it last time when I was with the national team. UEFA now has to do something about it, because things like this in stadiums is not right. Today it happened twice with me and that is not right with people. We are in 2019, there are many players with many different nationalities in their teams. When there are people that for me are bad, at the stadium, that’s not a good example for the kids. I hope that UEFA now do something about it, because the whole stadium did it when Lautaro scored the first goal, and that’s not good for the people watching this game

2019 12 05 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has released statements following Thursday’s ‘Black Friday’ headline in Corrie dello Sport] Instead of focusing on a battle between two teams.. corriere dello sport comes up with the most dumbest of headlines I have ever seen in my career. You guys keep fuelling the negativity and the racism issue instead of talking about the beautiful game that’s going to be played at San Siro between two great clubs. Education is key. You guys of corriere dello Sport should do a better job at that. Thanks to all the fans and other journalists to highlight for the support and let’s all look forward to tomorrow’s game. Forza Inter

2019 12 23 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku has spoken about the racism he has faced while playing for Inter Milan this season] [I thought] I’m going to score. I’m going to win. I’m going to go home. I’ve been confronted by it many times in life. You build a type of shell. I take my anger out on the field

[Corriere dello Sport previewed a match between Inter and Roma earlier this month with a front page that featured pictures of Lukaku and Chris Smalling, with the headline: ‘Black Friday’] You guys keep fuelling the negativity and the racism issue […] education is key

2019 12 23b Retrieve

[Inter forward Romelu Lukaku says Cristiano Ronaldo warned him that Serie A was the hardest place to score in the world] He told me this is the hardest defensive league in the world. He said he’d scored goals everywhere, but this was the toughest place to do it. And if Cristiano Ronaldo thinks it’s difficult, then it must be really difficult. It is harder than England. The football is more intense there, but here everything is pattern of play

[He believes he and close friend Paul Pogba were scapegoats for the Red Devils’ difficulties] It was always ‘Yes, but..’ right from the start. I scored against Real Madrid in the European Super Cup but missed a chance. It was: ‘But he missed that one’. I scored against West Ham in my first Premier League game: ‘Yes, but … ‘ From then on, I started to wonder how it was going to go. One year at United erased eight years prior to that. [Pogba and I] were blamed for Manchester United’s fall

2019 12 29 Retrieve

[When Romelu Lukaku complained of racist behaviour by Slavia Prague fans in the Champions League, the Czech side denied such chanting happening - and instead called on Lukaku to apologise for the accusation] We must reject that there has been racist chanting of the whole stadium. We analysed available footages, and none confirmed Mr Lukaku’s statement. The club has already apologised for individuals’ behaviour and it would be appropriate for Mr Lukaku to apologise for his words too

2019 12 30 Retrieve

[Lukaku: Man Utd spell was not a bad experience, it made me stronger and calmer] The period there had made me calmer. I don’t look at it in a negative way; it really helped me mentally to be ready and to grow as a player and as a person. I will never see it as a bad experience because it helped me be where I am today

Clearly now that I’m at Inter there are benefits from what I learned in Manchester both from a sporting and non-sporting point of view. I prepared a lot and I am much calmer. In my head, there is much more serenity and composure. I am a person who when things are not going well, shows it through so much anger. I’m stronger after the Manchester United experience

2020 01 08 Retrieve

[Czech side Slavia Prague were later fined by Uefa after their fans had been caught making monkey noises] Uefa now has to do something about it, because things like this in stadiums is not right. Today it happened twice with me and that is not right with people. We are in 2019, there are many players with many different nationalities in their teams. When there are people that for me are bad, at the stadium, that’s not a good example for the kids. I hope that Uefa now do something about it, because the whole stadium did it when Lautaro [Martinez] scored the first goal, and that’s not good for the people watching this game

2020 01 15 Retrieve

[Lukaku has no regrets on leaving Man Utd following Coppa Italia brace] I must thank my team-mates, the coach, the backroom staff and the fans. Everyone has helped me from day one. Inter were my best option. I can grow here and I can give my contribution. My role is to help the team in any way and I know that the fans like this. I must keep this up. Obviously, scoring is the objective, however, I’m not just thinking about myself, but also the team. I’m here to achieve this and I hope to win something. However, for now, I’m only focused on Lecce

2020 01 24 Retrieve

[Lukaku: Antonio Conte told me I was trash in front of Inter stars] I remember one of my first Champions League games against Slavia Prague when I played really bad - like I was trash that day - and I really got it from him in front of the whole team. He told me that I was really trash and that he would take me off after five minutes if I would have done it again.

It’s little things like that. And we played the Milan derby just after that and I played one of my best games of the season. He just gave me that - he stepped on my confidence but it woke me up at the same time. He does it to everybody, it doesn’t matter who you are. Everybody is equal. It had never really happened to me before. It had never happened. The manager, he tells it straight to your face if you’re doing well or wrong

[Lukaku also credits the formations used with Inter and Belgium, where Roberto Martinez is head coach, for his strong form] When there is a lot of movement around me, here and with the Belgian national team, I am at my best because then I can create myself and I can be at the end of the delivery. Right now, the systems we are playing, here at Inter with the 3-5-2, and with the Belgium national team in a 3-4-3 with players close to me. Here [at Inter] we play in a system where you have to be in a certain position but at the end of the day, if you stand in the right position, you get chances. It is different with the Belgian national team, where there is much more freedom but I have more players around me

2020 01 24b Retrieve

[When discussing the managers who have brought the best out of him] I think Roberto Martinez, Ronald Koeman and now Antonio Conte. I think Jose Mourinho - if he would have had the players that he wanted, he would have done better than what we did. Steve Clarke, massive mention to him, because he gave me the opportunity to play in the Premier League aged 19. And obviously my first coach at Anderlecht, Ariel Jacobs, who gave me the chance when I’d barely turned 16. He called me from school, they called me like, ‘Yo, you have to come with the first team’, and he played me straight away.

Those are the coaches that forever I will respect them. At the end of the day, I’m always an open-minded guy and at the end of the day, as a footballer, you have to do what your manager asks. I’ve never had any problem with any manager I’ve had - it shows my professionalism and my willingness to work

[Lukaku added on his exit from English football] Last year was difficult for me on the professional side, because stuff was not going how I wanted and I was not performing as well. So I had to find it within myself what was lacking and came to the conclusion that it was time for me to change environment. I made my decision around March, and I went to the manager’s office and told him it was time for me to find something else. I wasn’t performing and I wasn’t playing. I think it was better for both sides to go separate ways. I think I made the right decision. Manchester United has made space for the younger players to come through so I think it was a win-win situation for both of us

2020 01 28 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku claims to be living the dream at Inter, with it always an ambition of his to follow in the footsteps of San Siro legends such as Ronaldo, Christian Vieri and Adriano] To play in Italy and for Inter was a dream I had. The first final I watched as a kid was Inter-Lazio. I wanted to play for Inter, who always had great strikers like Ronaldo, Vieri and Adriano

[The first final I watched as a kid was Inter-Lazio. I wanted to play for Inter, who always had great strikers like Ronaldo, Vieri and Adriano] Everything started in a friendly between Belgium and Italy. I noticed that he played with two attackers, Eder and [Graziano] Pelle, and they created a lot of chances. I understood that with his style of playing, I would have had a lot of chances to score and it would enhance my physical abilities. After the game, we talked a little and he told me that he was going to Chelsea, but it wasn’t possible for me to follow him there. So, I told him that if he went somewhere else in the future, I would follow him

2020 02 02 Retrieve

[The result sees Inter move above Lazio into second place in the table, three points behind leaders Juventus, ahead of next weekend’s Milan derby at San Siro] The match against Fiorentina in the Coppa Italia gave us a boost. We knew that it wouldn’t be easy here in Udinese, but in the second half we did well. We managed to score two goals and get all three points. It’s an important victory on our journey. We must now keep this up and turn our attention immediately to the derby against Milan

2020 02 04 Retrieve

[Lukaku lavishes praise on ex-Man Utd team-mate] Ibra is a champion, I respect him. In Manchester I could train every day with him, that was the most beautiful thing for me. It will be nice to play against him He is a great champion and professional. For me it’s normal that he can do those things at the age of 38. He works a lot; he always gave me advice when we played together in Manchester

2020 02 08 Retrieve

[After a friendly between Belgium and Italy in Brussels in November 2015, Lukaku had been struck by the Azzurri’s style of play] I understood that with his style of playing, I would have had a lot of chances to score and it would enhance my physical abilities. After the game, we talked a little and he told me that he was going to Chelsea, but it wasn’t possible for me to follow him there. So, I told him that if he went somewhere else in the future, I would follow him

[striker has admitted himself, he excels when surrounded by players adept at creating and exploiting space with intelligent running and crisp passing] When there is a lot of movement around me, here (at Inter) and with the Belgian national team, I am at my best because then I can contribute myself and I can be at the end of the delivery. Right now, the systems we are playing, here at Inter with the 3-5-2, and with the Belgium national team in a 3-4-3 with players close to me

[He says he learned a lot at United. And from Ibrahimovic] I remember one training session. Because we were both strikers, we were never on the same team and, at one point, there was a 50/50 challenge. He went full-on against me! That is when I knew this guy wants to compete and this guy wants to fight for his spot. That is why he changed me. It was an eye-opener. The guy had to fight to be in the position he is in. So, I learned just to focus, work hard and enjoy it as well

2020 02 10 Retrieve

[Lukaku insists Inter never gave up in stunning comeback against Milan] We did really well during the second half. They played well during the first half, as we left them too much space and we struggled. However, we came out well after the interval. We completed the comeback and we’re delighted with the win. I think that everyone has seen this team’s mentality, we never give up and we’re always looking to win. I’m here to win and my only aim is to help the team get results. I want to thank all of the fans, my team-mates, Mister [Antonio] Conte and all of his backroom staff for the support that they’re giving me

2020 03 03 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku sees Manchester United heading in the right direction] They are going the right direction. It’s a process, but they will get there

[He said of Rashford] Not surprised about what he is doing. He [has] been working hard

[Lukaku of his spell with United] It was always, ‘Yes, but … ‘ right from the start. I scored against Real Madrid in the European Super Cup but missed a chance. It was: ‘But he missed that one’. I scored against West Ham in my first Premier League game: ‘Yes, but … ‘ From then on, I started to wonder how it was going to go.

2020 03 19 Retrieve

[Lukaku describes life in isolation] I almost went crazy one day. I can’t go out, I can’t go shopping. I’m locked up in the house. I miss everyday life, being with my mom, with my son and brother. I’m with my physiotherapist, they bring me food every day. At noon lunch arrives on time, I eat fish and vegetables. They provided me with an exercise bike. I asked in our group chat who had one at home and after two hours they brought one to each of us

You have to be careful. My mom, for example, has diabetes, so I can’t even go home and touch her

The Nerazzurri were my favorite team as a child thanks to Adriano, Ronaldo and Christian Vieri, with whom I now have an excellent relationship. Conte already wanted me at Chelsea, I have never had any doubts and since I arrived in Milan I have concentrated on training and on returning to the best form.

2020 03 19b Retrieve

[Lukaku reveals he was ‘really close’ to Juventus move] I was close, really close [to joining Juve], but my mind was always set on Inter and the manager. As a kid I looked up to Adriano, Ronaldo and [Christian] Vieri. Obviously when Inter came - and the manager Conte wanted me at Chelsea and Juve as well - I wanted to go there and see what it was like, keep my head down and work

One bad year can happen to everybody, and I was done [at United]. It was a difficult situation. I had to make a decision over going somewhere where I can learn other aspects of my game and work with somebody that wanted me as well. Ole wanted me to stay but I told him it was over. I didn’t have the energy. All credit to him because he’s been a man and he helped me make the move away.

They are going the right way because they are bringing in the right players. Ole is doing a good job and the results are good. I wish them nothing but the best. As a club they gave me a platform that I had never seen in my life.

2020 03 22 Retrieve

[Lukaku himself said he was close to joining Juventus] I was close, really close [to joining Juve], but my mind was always set on Inter and the manager Antonio Conte

2020 04 03 Retrieve

[Lukaku on life at Inter] We’re good. Working hard. I’m running around after my son. It’s just difficult, I miss the competitiveness, the training sessions, playing in front of the fans, that’s the most difficult thing. Being competitive with another team.

[On trying to improve his game at Inter] Right now it’s a moment for me to analyse my game and see what I’ve done in the last six months and to take it forward and add something else to my game. That’s the plan. I want to be everything. I told you (Henry) that four years ago, that was one of the first conversations in the national team. I said I want to be a guy that has double figures in goals and assists so step-by-step it’s coming. Twenty five [goals], 10 [assists] would be nice. 20 [goals], 20 [assists] is not easy… I need Lautaro or Alexis Sanchez to do me a big favour. But they’re already working well with me, we’re exchanging really well. It doesn’t matter who I play with up front. When you mature it’s not only about yourself anymore. Obviously scoring goals is my thing, my drug, it’s what I live for but the older you get you have to use your intelligence as well because I always say I’m a student of the game. If I want to help my team I have to also be capable of giving assists because it cannot only be me. It has to be the guy next to you. Everybody has to feel important. If I can’t shoot myself I will always try to find the last pass. When we do the analysis of the game, when we shoot from positions where we don’t have to shoot from he (Conte) stops the clip and then he says ‘look, the big player finds the pass’

It all started on the first day when I got there at Inter. Me speaking Spanish helped because then on the field straight away we knew left, right. I asked him ‘what do you like from your partner?’ I said to him ‘when I get the ball I like my partner to move quickly around me and be dynamic as well because that’s the way the coach wants us to play’. It helps me because some games I have to play more like a target man and then he will help me more with these movements and some games we both have to be dynamic and run into the space. The way we work in training is that every day we do video analysis of the way we work so it’s rare we will make the same mistake the next day. He (Conte) will show it in the video before training so he expects in the session that we don’t make the same mistakes. If you have a manager who’s on you like that every day, it can only be good. I’m 26, I always think about improving and getting better so I don’t mind

It was my team in Italy when I was a kid [because of] R9, Adriano. So for me it’s like a dream [to join Inter]. R9 was playing there when I was like six or seven. 1998 was my first memory of football. The UEFA Cup final they played, the World Cup, and then R9 got injured, he missed two years then he came back 2002 but then he went to Madrid. And then it was you (Henry), Drogba, Adriano. What Ronaldo did at that time I think, man

2020 04 03b Retrieve

[Lukaku questions delay to suspend Serie A following coronavirus outbreak] Health comes first. Why should we play if there are people in the world who are risking their lives? Why was it only necessary for a player to test positive in order for football to stop? It’s not normal. I will admit that I do miss football, but now the most important thing is people’s health. Everything else comes secondary to that

What I miss most is competing with opponents, being in full stadiums and feeling the support from the fans. I am using this time to analyse my performances and indeed, more generally, everything I have done in the last six months. You can always improve in football

I was close, really close [to joining Juve], but my mind was always set on Inter and the manager. As a kid I looked up to Adriano, Ronaldo and [Christian] Vieri. Obviously when Inter came - and the manager Conte wanted me at Chelsea and Juve as well - I wanted to go there and see what it was like, keep my head down and work

2020 04 13 Retrieve

[Lukaku heaps praise on Inter strike partner Lautaro] Amazing, the guy is really a beast. He is doing so well, he keeps improving, I love him.

[Lukaku compare his experiences in Serie A with his time in the Premier League] I think Serie A is really good. With the Premier League, the intensity and the power of the game is really up there. But tactically in Italy, I think you get a little more tested. It is not as easy to score a goal as people think, every game you have to prepare and play in a different way. Both of these leagues are really good; every league has its strengths and it’s nice for me to discover a different league. I love both Italy and England, both countries have been very welcoming to me

[Lukaku wasn’t quite as kind when Inter team-mate Marcelo Brozovic entered into the comment section, jokingly calling the Belgian ‘ugly’] You are uglier than me! With that new hair you look like a pornstar! I don’t like it, go back to your old haircut

2020 04 18 Retrieve

[Inter star Lukaku doesn’t think he’ll play in Premier League again] I don’t think so but I loved my time at Everton for real.

[Inter were down 2-0 at the break against their city rivals, only to storm back with a four-goal second half to win the match 4-2] Conte when we were 2-0 down against AC Milan. He didn’t scream at all, he told us what to do and where to find space and we did the business.

2020 04 19 Retrieve

[Lukaku weighed in on the differences between playing in Serie A and the Premier League] Tactically here, you get tested every week. [But] the speed in the Premier League is higher

2020 04 21 Retrieve

[Lukaku claims Inter squad had coronavirus symptoms in December] We had a week off in December, we returned to work and I swear that 23 out of 25 players were ill. I am not kidding. We played against Radja Nainggolan’s Cagliari and after about 25 minutes, one of our defenders had to leave the pitch. He could not continue and almost fainted

[Lukaku said of the game against Cagliari] Everyone was coughing and had a fever. When I was warming up, I felt a lot hotter than usual. I hadn’t suffered from a fever in years. After the game there was a planned dinner with guests from Puma, but I thanked them and went straight to bed. We never did the Covid-19 tests at that moment, so we’ll never know for sure

We’ve got seven players who all live in the same street. The difference with England is enormous, as there we’d go out to dinner about once every four months, whereas here it’s every four weeks

I dream of ending at Anderlecht, so the circle will be closed and I will have been a professional footballer for 20 years. Then I would like to travel and let it all go. I will never become a commentator, but now I am taking a training course. Who knows, maybe I will become a coach

2020 05 02 Retrieve

[Lukaku explains how Drogba & Anelka made him a star] Everything happened quickly there. I was only 18 years old, I had just finished high school three months earlier, I had graduated and suddenly I was already on the train to London. There I met Didier Drogba, he was doing physiotherapy. He told me immediately that I had to show him the ‘Blue’ character. From that day on we started talking every day for at least an hour, before training, after training. He, Anelka and every other player in that locker room showed me what it takes to become the person I am today. It wasn’t so much the coach as the players, they had a mentality that made them say ‘OK, let’s go win’. It was a great experience, I saw how they won the Champions League, the FA Cup and this has served me well so far

A man on a mission. I didn’t realise it during the World Cup in Russia, I was a bit euphoric, we got to the semi-finals and we’re talking about a small country with only 11 million inhabitants. The pain came a month later when I reviewed all the videos from the World Cup. That was difficult, because you think you really came close. And that only hit me afterwards

2020 05 21 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku admits to having not laid a finger on the Champions League trophy when Chelsea conquered Europe in 2012, with the Belgian still resenting Andre Villas-Boas for leaving him out of a successful squad] Di Matteo told me that I would stay with the group until after the final. He thought everyone should come along, including the ones who were suspended and the few boys who were not in the Champions League squad. I am also grateful to him for that.

This win is one of the things I’ve always dreamed about. You want to celebrate something like that with the team at that time. That is nice in itself at the age of 19. I am happy for the whole club, but there is one man who took a lot from me: the previous trainer (Villas-Boas). I will never forgive him for that

I didn’t touch it with a finger. Because I didn’t win this trophy myself. This has been the case since I was 11: if I have not contributed anything, it is not my trophy. Only if you have contributed to a cup or a title yourself, you can also show it off

Once I had to play in the front left, another time in the front right. You don’t develop that way. Then at some point you have to think about yourself. So I told the club what I thought of it. I know Villas-Boas was also under pressure, but that’s why he didn’t have to treat me like that. Di Matteo approached me completely differently, he immediately involved me in everything. That should have been much earlier. Really, I never forgave the previous coach

2020 06 22 Retrieve

[Romelu Lukaku issued a rallying cry to his Inter team-mates after Sunday’s 2-1 win over Sampdoria saw them move six points behind Serie A leaders Juventus] It was very important to win, as from now to the end of the season it’s 12 finals, they are all life or death. Now we have to focus and get fired up for Wednesday. Every game is tough from now and they will not be easy for anybody. We worked really well in training, the team is in good shape physically, but we have to keep going and get even stronger, because it’s going to be a game every three days