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Romelu Lukaku Reveals He Could Have Made Chelsea Return in 2016 & 2017

Chelsea and Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku reveals how he could have returned to Chelsea in 2016 and 2017, with 'two opportunities to come back'.

The 28-year-old spent three years at Chelsea between 2011 and 2014, but only made a total of 15 appearances, failing to score once.

After that, he was released to Everton in 2014 and after three seasons, moved to Manchester United and then Inter before finally returning to Chelsea in August 2021.


Speaking about his return to Chelsea after seven years away from west London, Lukaku explained how he nearly arrived back at the club, earlier than expected.

"I knew I would improve as a player so it was just about timing," he told the official Chelsea website.

"I had two opportunities to come back, in 2016 and 2017, but it didn’t happen for various reasons.

"In the end, it happened because now is the right time, the right age, the team is doing well and everything is there for it to be successful."

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The Belgian international went on to grow in his time away from Stamford Bridge before making his return earlier this year.

He is now one of the most dangerous strikers in world football, but he is grateful for the struggles he faced in his first spell at Chelsea.

"It was painful and helpful, but I would say more helpful because it gave me the mentality and the mindset that I needed to become the player I am today.

"The team was very good but nobody saw the extra work they did after the training sessions.

"As an 18-year-old, I saw first-hand every day how much the players worked on their craft."

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