By Mukwuzi Joseph
Chelsea have a new meeting with Inter Milan planned for today to finalise a move for Romelu Lukaku and bring the two clubs closer together on the asking price.
That’s according to Gazzetta Dello Sport, who say there is currently a €5m difference between what Chelsea are offering and what the Italian champions want.
They say that the Blue have already put up €110m for Lukaku, but Inter have deemed that not enough as their ‘minimum threshold’ is €115m.
Negotiations yesterday went on for eight hours, including a lunch break, with them starting at 11am and going from there.
This is backed up by corrire Dello Sport, who also say there is a €5m difference between the two clubs that needs to be resolved.
Like Gazzetta, they carry information regarding yesterday’s meeting, explaining that Marina Granovskaia led the talks with Inter CEO Beppe Marotta and general manager Piero Ausilio and ‘outlined the contours’ of the deal.
According to their information, Chelsea have so far offered €110m and tried to include Marcos Alonso or Davide Zappacosta in the negotiations, but this was rejected by Inter, who don’t want anything like that.
They want the money straight up so they can clear their debts and reinvest in the squad, having already set up several potential transfers using the money available.
Gazzetta back all of this up, saying Inter weren’t interested in Alonso or Zappacosta because they do not value them as Chelsea do and are concerned about their wage bill.
After negotiations were resumed in the afternoon, Chelsea made their first bid of €110m, raising it from €100m earlier in the week, but Inter made it clear they want €115m, which would be paid over three or four years. So far, there has been no discussion about bonuses.
They say that Lukaku would like the deal done as soon as possible so he can play in Wednesday’s European Super Cup, but it’s not clear if that will happen.
The newspaper believes that if an agreement is found today, then things could move quickly and give him his wish.
Corriere say the same but add that Lukaku may be forced to renounce some of the bonuses he is still owed from last season to make the move happen with the speed he’d like.
He does already have an agreement in place with Chelsea on a contract worth €12m a year plus €3m in bonuses, but unless the Blues can reach an agreement in the talks today, he won’t be signing that any time soon.