Romelu Lukaku Talks 'Difficult Situation' at Manchester United, Inter Transfer

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistMarch 19, 2020

ROME, ITALY - FEBRUARY 16: Romelu Lukaku of FC Internazionale reacts during the Serie A match between SS Lazio and  FC Internazionale at Stadio Olimpico on February 16, 2020 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Silvia Lore/Getty Images)
Silvia Lore/Getty Images

Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku has opened up on the "difficult situation" he found himself in at Manchester United last season.

The Belgium international made the switch to the Serie A side last summer and has enjoyed a fine first campaign at the San Siro. 

In the previous term, he fell out of favour at Old Trafford under the tutelage of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. While Lukaku was able to score goals regularly in a red shirt, his profile as a forward didn't fit the way the United boss wanted his team to operate. Lukaku discussed his time at the club on Ian Wright's YouTube channel (h/t Marcus Banks of the Manchester Evening News):

"One bad year can happen to everybody in their career. It was just done for me. It was a difficult situation for myself. I had to make a decision.

"I had to go somewhere where I could learn other aspects of my game, work with somebody who wanted me. Yes [it bothered me that people were talking about my shape], it got to my head.

"Training is different, here you work hard. They work you hard. Speak to Ashley Young. There's a lot of difference, here the team is the team, there's like team bonding, we have two or three team dinners every three weeks, all together, nobody misses out."

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Lukaku also praised his current manager Antonio Conte, saying the former Chelsea boss has transformed Inter into the "most aggressive team in the league." "The manager puts it in us," he continued. "Be aggressive and press, the physical preparation."

The 26-year-old has been able to find the net frequently for Inter this season, with 17 goals in 25 top-flight appearances. Per OptaPaolo, this season Lukaku has proved he can score different kinds of goals:

Finding the net has never been an issue for the Belgian. During his time with Anderlecht, West Bromwich Albion, Everton, United and Inter, he's showcased a ruthless streak when chances fall to him.

At United, he was criticised for his conditioning and there was a sense he didn't fit in with the fluid attacking football Solskjaer wanted to play. 

Since leaving United, Lukaku has been able to develop more facets of his game under Conte. Italian football writer David Amoyal commented on how well the pair are working together:

Before the suspension of matches in Italy due to the coronavirus pandemic, Inter found themselves in the middle of a gripping title race. They were nine points behind leaders Juventus and eight behind Lazio in second spot, although the Nerazzurri had a game in hand on both.

Lukaku was a crucial part of that push, and as he enters what appear to be the peak years of his career, Inter are set to be the main benefactors.