CHELSEA have agreed a £97.5million deal for Romelu Lukaku – after they refused Inter Milan’s demands to break the British transfer record.
The Blues finally settled on the cash-only price for the striker after holding firm and refusing to cough up a further five million Euros – around £4.2m.
That would have taken the price for Lukaku up to £101.7m, which would have surpassed the record £100m Manchester City splashed out on Jack Grealish last week.
But the two clubs eventually reached an agreement after a week of haggling.
Chelsea are hopeful of announcing the return of the Belgian on Monday.
Lukaku has agreed a £200,000-a-week contract to make the switch back to Stamford Bridge for the second time in his career.
The Belgian had previously been on the books of the Blues between 2011 and 2014, between the ages of 18 and 21.
There is a slim hope the deal will be done and Lukaku in England in enough time for the opening day Premier League clash with Crystal Palace.
Blues owner Roman Abramovich has agreed to splash out the biggest fee he has ever paid after Thomas Tuchel made it clear the side needed a top-class striker.
The German chief believes signing a Lukaku, Harry Kane or Erling Haaland-type forward was the only way to mount a serious Premier League challenge this season.
Having led Chelsea to Champions League glory last season, Abramovich has placed a huge amount of trust in Tuchel.
In fact, the Russian billionaire trusts him so much so he has stumped up nearly four times as much as he sold Lukaku for in 2014.
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That year, Chelsea allowed Lukaku to join Everton for just £28m.
Still aged just 28, Chelsea believe they are signing a striker in the peak of his powers.
And Blues officials hope Lukaku will help bridge the gap back to the top of the domestic game, including Liverpool and the two Manchester clubs.
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