Roma’s loan signing of Romelu Lukaku from Chelsea for the season was one of the best deals done by a Serie A club during the summer transfer window. The 30-year-old is regarded as one of the leading strikers in Europe, while his record in the Italian league speaks for itself.
This will be Lukaku’s third spell in Italy. He spent two seasons with Inter Milan between 2019 and 2021. After one season back in the Premier League with Chelsea, he returned on loan to Inter in 2022, while this latest deal sees him play his football in Rome.
Jose Mourinho Knows the Belgian Very Well
Roma manager Jose Mourinho will be hoping the signing of Lukaku will help his side’s chance of winning the Serie A title this season. They now have football odds of +4000 to win the league championship in what would be their first success since 2001.
Mourinho coached Lukaku when he was Chelsea manager in 2013, while he also signed him for Manchester United in 2017 for £75 million. He knows his best attributes, and he will set up his team to provide the striker with as many goal-scoring opportunities as he can.
In his opening two seasons with Inter, Lukaku scored at least 30 goals in all competitions in each campaign. That number is a realistic target once again for the Belgium international. He has shown that when fit, he enjoys playing in Italy, as he is physically able to dominate defenders when in possession of the ball.
Roma Continues to Improve As A Team
Lukaku has joined Roma at a good time. Their results in Europe over the last couple of seasons show that they are a team on an upward trajectory. In 2022 they won the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League, beating Feyenoord in the final, while earlier this year, they were beaten in the final of the Europa League by Sevilla.
The former Inter striker joins a squad that includes Tammy Abraham, Paulo Dybala, Houssem Aouar, and Renato Sanchez. He will offer something different to all those players, and they all should enjoy having Lukaku on the team, as he will help create spaces for them to take advantage of.
Chance For European Silverware
Lukaku has the unfortunate record of playing in four major UEFA competitions and he has finished up on the losing team in each of those. His Manchester United side lost the final of the 2017 UEFA Super Cup to Real Madrid. When at Inter Milan, he was runner-up in the Champions League and Europa League, after going down to Manchester City and Sevilla respectively, while he lost the UEFA Super Cup on penalties to Bayern Munich earlier in his career at Chelsea.
Mourinho will treat this season’s Europa League as one of his priorities. Not just to try and avenge his painful loss in the final earlier this year, but it also represents a chance to qualify for the Champions League.
With Lukaku in their team, Roma will be considered one of the strongest contenders for the trophy along with Liverpool and Brighton.
Lukakau made his debut for Roma in a 1-2 defeat to AC Milan, coming off the bench in that home defeat. He will be hoping he can inspire his side to better results from the starting XI following the international break.