Does £97.5M for Lukaku really constitute good business for Chelsea?

Inter Milan is a club in an almighty financial mess at the moment and if you had to pick a number on a scale of one to Barcelona, in order to accurately reflect the economic peril they're in, you would probably say nine.

It's a disastrous state of affairs down at the San Siro and an indication of how things are rarely as they seem in football. 

After all, it was only a few months ago that Inter managed to win the Serie A after almost a decade of domination by Juventus, yet here we are a week from the Italian top-flight starting and the defending champions are extraordinarily priced at 4/1 in the latest football betting markets to defend the title. 

It really has been a summer to forget for Inter with the feeling of euphoria replaced by one of total dread around what could happen next.

Needless to say, it’s easy to see why the latest football betting tips indicate Juventus will once again win the title this season whilst Inter tread water. 

Astonishingly though, and despite the fact that Inter’s finances are practically on life support, they still seem to have got the better out of Chelsea by demanding the Blues part with around £100 million for the services of Romelu Lukaku.

Indeed, one almost has an out-of-body experience when they consider that Marina Granovskaia paid a club that's quite literally struggling to keep the lights on, an eye-watering £97.5 million.

Lukaku is obviously a very good player, which is evident alone from the stats that show he enjoyed a fruitful season in Serie A last season as he scored 24 goals in 36 games.

Impressively, the Belgian also chipped in with ten assists in what was undeniably the season of his life.

But when you take into account the player’s age, the step-up in difficulty as far as the Premier League goes, and the fact that Inter have debts of over £400 million, it does seem like a lot of money all of a sudden. 

Crucially, there's also the possibility that Timo Werner enjoys a far more productive season in the Premier League after a tough debut campaign.

It does seem like a matter of time before the German finds his range but now that Lukaku has arrived, and especially due to the magnitude of the fee he's worth, Thomas Tuchel will be expected to start him from the off. It feels like Chelsea went for the hardcore option when signing up fresh talent this season.

Admittedly, they've picked up a good player, but with a lot of firepower in the dressing room already, you can't help but question whether it was really necessary?

Consider, also, the fact that Chelsea could easily have waited on in preparation for who becomes available next summer.

They could have found the goals they needed for another season before triggering Erling Haaland's relatively low release clause of £75 million in 2022.

The 21-year-old Norwegian superstar is said to be very keen on a move to Stamford Bridge but after the extensive Lukaku outlay, will it now be possible for this to happen?

There are a lot of question marks around Lukaku’s arrival in a league where he has only ever once scored over 20 goals in a season.

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When all is said and done, you can’t help but feel that Inter Milan have somehow managed to pull the wool over Chelsea’s eyes here.

This article was most recently revised and updated 2 years ago