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Romelu Lukaku wants to join Chelsea..

Chelsea warn Everton their next Romelu Lukaku bid will be final

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Since August 2015, we have all grown a year older and a year wiser, yet Chelsea curiously find themselves in almost exactly the same position they did 12 months ago.

The Blues may have lost their Premier League crown and changed managers twice, but their predicaments in the transfer market appear eerily similar.

Throw your mind back to last year and Chelsea were aggressively pursuing Everton star John Stones. Jose Mourinho publically declared his interest and launched three offers.

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Before that third bid, believed to be worth £35m, Chelsea officials told their Everton counterparts that it would be final. Reject it and the Blues would never return with another.

They have stuck to their word. Despite Stones being available for £50m this time around, Chelsea have sat back while Manchester City negotiate a deal. That may be because new manager Antonio Conte doesn't rate him or it may be because he has his eyes set on Stones' team-mate, Romelu Lukaku.

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Final bid

According to The Times, Chelsea are ready to spend over £60m to bring the Belgian striker back just two years after they sold him for £28m. They have already seen a £57m bid knocked back with the Toffees holding out for £75m.

Chelsea are willing to go higher but they will not meet that demand. Instead, they have issued the same ultimatum to Everton that they did last year. Their next offer will be their last and, should it be rejected, their interest in Lukaku will end for good.

Everton v Chelsea - Premier League

Sweeteners

That may seem like a lot of money for a player who scored just 18 Premier League goals last season but the deal is much more complicated than a straight exchange of cash.

For one, Chelsea inserted a sell-on clause into the original 2014 deal, meaning they will be owed a percentage of the fee back from Everton. It is also believed that Everton have not finished paying the instalments on the £28m deal, which can be written off to further reduce the final figure.

Everton v West Ham United - Premier League

The end of Costa?

But would the arrival of Lukaku signal the end of Diego Costa? The striker is widely believed to be angling for a return to Atletico Madrid. The La Liga club have publically pursued the controversial striker but Chelsea hope Costa will stay regardless of whether Lukaku signs.

Conte wants to play two strikers, meaning he will need four in his squad. Michy Batshuayi has already arrived from Marseille while Conte has suggested Eden Hazard and even Ruben Loftus-Cheek could contribute in attack.

One player who is likely to leave is Loic Remy, who has struggled for game time since arriving from Queens Park Rangers in 2014.

WAC RZ Pellets v Chelsea - Friendly Match

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Topics:
Chelsea
Everton
Football
Didier Drogba
John Terry
Premier League
Romelu Lukaku
Frank Lampard

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