Transfer Insight on Real Madrid's Eden Hazard Plan and Romelu Lukaku's Future

Dean Jones@DeanJonesBRFootball Insider at Bleacher ReportMay 31, 2019

LONDON,ENGLAND - MAY 9: Eden Hazard of Chelsea controls the ball during the UEFA Europa League Semi Final Second Leg match between Chelsea and Eintracht Frankfurt at Stamford Bridge on May 09, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)
Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

Eden Hazard said goodbye to Chelsea fans in the minutes that followed the final whistle of Wednesday's Europa League final in Baku, Azerbaijan, and Real Madrid are now preparing to lay out the red carpet to welcome him at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Sources in Spain told Bleacher Report that Zinedine Zidane has made it clear Hazard is a priority in this transfer window as he intends to build a team around the Belgium international next season.

That is why Real are now expected to pay more than they were initially willing. Previously it was believed they would not top the 100 million mark (£88 million), yet that stance is believed to have altered after Chelsea held firm over their belief he is worth closer to 120 million (£106 million)—despite the fact that he is heading into the final year of his contract. Madrid will ensure Zidane gets his wish and hope to find some middle ground.

Privately, Hazard stated his intention to leave weeks ago in the hope it would encourage the club to agree terms over a transfer fee. Discussions were rare in the buildup to the Europa League final, but an agreement is expected to be thrashed out over the coming days.

Hazard also needs to agree personal terms, though that is not expected to become an issue as he knows he will be set for a pay rise.

Once he is through the door, Real will also accelerate the final stages of an agreement for Eintracht Frankfurt forward Luka Jovic, who is expected to cost 70 million as the German club barter for the highest possible fee.  

Hazard and Jovic will provide fresh energy, creativity and goals to the Madrid front line for next season, and once both signings are confirmed, it is expected they will also look to make one more significant signing in midfield and another at full-back.

Teenage Santos forward Rodrygo Goes and FC Porto defender Eder Militao are already signed and sealed. 


Why Romelu Lukaku is wanted at Inter Milan 

Antonio Conte's arrival at Inter Milan opened the door for Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku to make a transfer from Old Trafford, and negotiations should move forward next week over the terms of a potential deal.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - APRIL 10:  Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Manager of Manchester United in discussion with Romelu Lukaku of Manchester United during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final first leg match between Manchester United and FC Barcelona at Old Traf
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Key to the deal is that Lukaku's agent, Federico Pastorello, also represents Conte, and the former Chelsea boss has wanted the Belgian as his striker since his first season at Stamford Bridge.

Conte was frustrated that Lukaku ended up at United instead because he believes his teams' style of play would suit the striker perfectly.

Now he must wait to discover whether the transfer becomes financially viable.

Since whispers of the move first began, sources in Italy and the UK have held doubts over whether Inter would be willing to pay the £70 million fee it will take to get Lukaku out of United—as well as match his terms of around £300,000 per week.


Unai Emery must decide on priorities

Arsenal's Europa League final defeat has a knock-on effect for the manager's summer rebuild.

Unai Emery is not happy with the quality of his squad, and sources at Arsenal believe he would ideally sign four new players for his starting XI.

His budget is stuck at £45 million following the European disappointment, though, so the Gunners manager must decide which area needs fixing most urgently.

Defence is an obvious place to begin, but Emery also wants a creative midfielder, and the club have been tracking £30 million-rated Ryan Fraser from Bournemouth.

Extra funds will only be made available by selling players.


Leicester fighting off big clubs

Leicester City are going to be one of the Premier League's most intriguing clubs during this transfer window.

Manchester City are interested in Ben Chilwell, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are keen on Harry Maguire, and just about every top-six team would like to sign James Maddison.

The message is that none are available, but insiders at the club believe Chilwell and Maguire could both leave if the right offer comes along.

Maguire has popped up on Tottenham's radar as they contemplate life after Toby Alderweireld, who is almost certain to leave. But talks have been taking place about a pay rise for Maguire at Leicester.