Graeme Souness: Jose Mourinho can’t say no to signing Romelu Lukaku

by Leo Nieboer

Former Liverpool midfielder Graeme Souness believes that Jose Mourinho could not turn down signing Everton’s Romelu Lukaku over the summer.

Mourinho offloaded the Belgian whilst at Chelsea ahead of their triumphant 2014/15 campaign for a fee of £28m after failing to impress during pre-season.

Since then, however, Lukaku has netted 64 goals for the Toffees, prompting the Portuguese into sending scouts to monitor his progress under Ronald Koeman this season.

And Souness has claimed that Mourinho would find it hard to reject the 23-year-old if the opportunity presented itself over the summer.

“He’s come on leaps and bounds, he’s involved in the games a lot more,” he said. 

“He’ll be attractive to the big guys if he finishes the season well. The big two in Spain, Man Utd, would Jose Mourinho say no to him? Maybe even Bayern Munich.”

Lukaku claimed more goals prior to his 23rd birthday than Michael Owen, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Luis Suarez and Zlatan Ibrahimovic – an emphatic indicator of raw goalscoring talent and, one suspects, a clear precursor for many more years of demolition.

And yet, in spite of that astonishing statistic, there remains a sizeable number of Everton supporters still unconvinced by the Belgian. But why?

A huge factor – and you don’t have to be an Everton supporter to discern this – is that Lukaku’s capacity for dominating defenders is matched by a tendency to completely disappear just when his team needs him. That FA Cup semi-final between United and Everton, for instance, held witness to a catalogue of blunders in front of goal.

Mourinho will have to be mindful of the mercurial nature of Lukaku’s talent when it comes to making a decision over whether to move for him ahead of the 2017/18 campaign.

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