Jose Mourinho emphasized that Inter has no reason to harbor any ill feelings towards Romelu Lukaku and stressed the importance of the Belgian striker feeling appreciated, following his debut goal for Roma in their 7-0 dismantling of Empoli.
Lukaku, who arrived at Roma on a season-long loan from Chelsea in late August, is said to have sealed the deal with his former managers from Manchester United and Chelsea, particularly through a convincing phone call. Despite facing challenges with consistency in the previous two seasons, Mourinho offered insights into how to extract the best performance from Lukaku after his impressive goal-scoring display against Empoli.
Furthermore, Mourinho playfully remarked that Inter Milan should not hold any grudges against Lukaku, given their abundance of attacking options. This is despite the fact that Lukaku turned down the opportunity to join Simone Inzaghi’s team on a permanent basis in a rather unceremonious manner.
Mourinho, speaking to DAZN, stated, “I found him in good spirits. Romelu requires happiness; he needs to feel valued and desired. Upon his arrival here, he immediately sensed that the team required a player of his caliber. I believe he is genuinely content, and, of course, he has a winning mentality, which is intrinsic to his nature. Inter has no reason to be displeased because they won a derby 5-1 and possess an exceptional team with numerous attacking options. They should be pleased for their former coach who required Romelu.”
Since Lukaku’s transfer from Inter Milan to Chelsea for £98 million ($121 million) in August 2021, the towering 30-year-old forward has faced criticism for his inconsistent performances in the attacking third. In the 2021-22 season, he managed to score only 15 times for Chelsea and 14 times during his loan spell at Inter the previous season. If Mourinho can unlock Lukaku’s potential and keep him injury-free, there is a strong possibility that he could once again become a formidable force on the elite football stage.
Roma will commence their Europa League campaign on Thursday, facing Moldovan side Sheriff, with Lukaku poised to lead their attack once more.