Inter Milan hope to offer Romelu Lukaku £41m over five years, including bonuses, if they can convince Manchester United to sell the Belgian striker.
Inter’s latest proposal for Lukaku would guarantee United £63m, including add-ons, but structured over two or three years. It is believed that is still short of United’s expectations with the club wanting more than the £79m they paid Everton in 2017.
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Sky in Italy say the Serie A club are reluctant to match that asking price and would prefer to find some middle ground.
Sky Sports News reported on Wednesday that Lukaku’s absence from United’s pre-season friendly win over Leeds was the beginning of the departure process, with the striker missing the game with what is described as being related to a minor ankle injury.
Negotiations are continuing between the clubs but Inter remain frustrated with the situation regarding Mauro Icardi. The Argentine is surplus to requirements but the Nerazzurri are yet to receive any firm offers as they attempt to operate within FFP perimeters.
They are also no closer to offloading Joao Mario, Radja Nainggolan and Miranda.
Lukaku’s contract expires in 2022 and United are holding firm with their valuation of Belgium’s all-time leading scorer following his 48 goals in 81 international matches by the age of 26.
They are also fully aware of his impressive Premier League scoring record of 113 goals in 252 games for United, Chelsea, Everton and West Brom.
Inter head coach Antonio Conte, who made Lukaku his primary target, has spoken very little to the media during this process, with his only appearance in front of the cameras coming at his unveiling press conference which was restricted to 30 journalists. He did not speak before or after Inter’s opening friendly in Switzerland.
However, Conte is scheduled to speak to the media on Friday in Singapore where United and Lukaku are due to arrive on Thursday ahead of a friendly between the sides this weekend. His pre-match news conference is expected to be dominated by Lukaku themed questions.
Conte was keen to have his squad in place before their tour of Asia where they face United on Saturday before playing Juventus and PSG in front of the Suning Group club owners.
Instead they are in the situation of having to face tough opposition reliant on a number of young strikers, with no sign of Lukaku or his other target, Eden Dzeko, arriving, while Lautaro Martinez is on holiday after his involvement in the Copa America.
Conte has previous form for making his feelings on transfer failings known. In 2014, he resigned as Juventus manager after reportedly objecting to the club’s transfer policy.
Sky Sports News has previously reported that Juventus are interested in Lukaku but no offer has been made by the Turin club, as they also keep an eye on the Icardi situation.
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