Chelsea still in the race to sign Romelu Lukaku

Everton striker Romelu Lukaku

Everton striker Romelu Lukaku

Jose Mourinho is keen to wrap up the signing before the club's pre-season tour of the U.S., and it is believed that United grew frustrated with the pursuit of Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid, and were silently working on the deal for Lukaku, as they used Wayne Rooney as a makeweight for the deal.

Everton will hope that is the case as it increases the chances of a bidding war to take the asking price closer to the £100m tag they privately put on the 24-year-old Belgium worldwide.

Lukaku to United, Morata to Chelsea?

United are in for Rodriguez after pulling out of the deal to sign Morata.

Chelsea would have to make wholesale changes in order to accommodate Lukaku, who scored 87 goals during his time at Everton, but Higginbotham thinks the former Anderlecht starlet will be able to help Manchester United play in a number of different ways.

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Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata is still a target, so too Tiemoue Bakayoko and Antonio Rudiger, meaning Chelsea could have to push through a couple of quick deals or risk Conte heading for the exit door. Man United made a decision to let him go rather than wait for him to recover from his cruciate injury but he would jump at the chance of staying at a top-level Premier League club (and one in the Champions League especially). They will now have to get creative to complete Costa's return, and are reportedly considering a short-term loan to China for the rest of the year.

The striker was sold to Everton for £28m by Mourinho during the Portuguese manager's second spell in charge of Chelsea in 2014.

Meanwhile, Jack-Pitt Brooke of the same outlet reported the Spaniard has been left "surprised and stranded" as a result of the Red Devils switching their attention to Lukaku, having been "convinced as late as Wednesday that he was days away from being a United player". "United do not want to be held to ransom because every club knows United are the richest club in the world so they're asking top dollar".

The 24-year-old has been holidaying in Los Angeles with close friend and United midfielder Paul Pogba and the Express cite Marca as saying that the striker has now passed his medical tests ahead of his switch to United.

Yet we have been informed that United's offer for Lukaku is still some way short of Everton's valuation, with the initial offer not containing enough guaranteed money to satisfy Goodison Park chiefs.

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