Thibaut Courtois can shine for Chelsea says Romelu Lukaku

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Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku believes now is the time for Thibaut Courtois to return to Stamford Bridge, suggesting that he should usurp Petr Cech between the posts in west London.

Courtois has been on loan in Spain with Atletico Madrid for the past three seasons, where he's established a bourgeoning reputation as perhaps the finest young goalkeeper on the planet. During his time at the Vicente Calderon the 22-year-old has won La Liga, the Europa League, the Copa del Rey and appeared in the Champions League final.

Speculation in recent months has suggested that Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho was pondering what to do next given that he already has Cech, who has consistently been one of the best 'keepers in Europe for the past decade, in goal.

The Special One certainly has a welcome headache in that respect, with Courtois unwilling to return to Chelsea if he's to be a number two, and Cech unlikely to tolerate losing regular first-team action. 

Now Lukaku has given his opinion - and the striker seems to suggest that Courtois should be in goal for Chelsea next season, and not Cech.

When asked about his countryman's future, he told Sporza: "I don't know, I only read about it. You'll have to ask him. I think it's time. He's played at a very high level in Spain for three years. It's time to see him in England."

Lukaku's suggestion that it's time for Courtois to return to Chelsea and show what he is capable of will only add fuel to the fire. Cech has been a loyal servant for years in west London and deserves to be treated with the utmost respect - however there is no denying that Courtois is the future for the Blues.

One possible solution could be taking a Real Madrid-style approach and play Cech in the league, and then give Courtois cup and European games. That would protect both player's egos and allow Courtois to have a season of settling into life in the Premier League, while ensuring Cech is also happy. 

However Mourinho rarely has time for reputation and sentiment, so the rumours that Cech, who at 31-years-old has plenty of time ahead of him at the highest level, may be moved on could be true.

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Romelu Lukaku
Premier League

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