Romelu Lukaku after completing his loan move to Inter Milan went down as one of the most expensive transfer mistakes in Chelsea
Last September, the Blues paid a club record £97.5 million to wrest Lukaku away from Inter. At the time, it seemed like a brilliant move as he scored four goals in his first four games.
But a significant injury setback in November signaled the beginning of his downfall at Chelsea, as the Belgian striker struggled to reintegrate into Thomas Tuchel’s plans afterward, reacted angrily in a fiery Sky Italia interview, and only managed to score five more league goals the rest of the season.
After struggling to make an impact at Stamford Bridge, the same Blues for whom he had last year made a goal-scoring promise, Lukaku was forced to return to Inter Milan.
But where does Lukaku stand as one of Chelsea’s biggest-ever failed transfer deals? The 6 worst signings made by Chelsea are listed below:
Romelu Lukaku €113
Romelu Lukaku was envisioned as the linchpin, the player who would enable Chelsea to defeat Manchester City and Liverpool to claim the Premier League title.
The 29-year-old Belgian had just assisted Inter Milan in decisively defeating Juventus and ending their ten-year reign as Serie A champions a few weeks before he joined Chelsea in August 2021.
The Blues were obviously lacking a center-forward, and they believed they had found one in Lukaku, a member of their old development club.
Chelsea went to great lengths to acquire the former Manchester United striker. To pay for Lukaku, the club’s transfer department sold nine stars including some promising young players.
The departure was top by Marc Guehi, Fikayo Tomori, and Tammy Abraham.
Tammy Abraham €40
Tammy Abraham’s expulsion from Chelsea by manager Thomas Tuchel is one of the mysteries of the 2020–21 season.
Tammy Abraham, a recent Blues academy graduate, left during the busy summer transfer window to join former Blues manager Jose Mourinho in Serie A.
To put it mildly, Romelu Lukaku’s return during the same window caused a tumultuous period, whereas Abraham has scored 17 goals in 32 games for Roma this season.
Tammy Abraham of Roma set a new record for the most goals scored by an Englishman in a single season in Serie A.
Roma won the Europa Conference League final in Albania, defeating Feyenoord 1-0, giving the Italian powerhouse their first trophy in 14 years. Tammy Abraham was instrumental in Roma’s success.
Fikayo Tomori €29
Last season, a report claimed that Lampard was concerned about Tomori’s decline in performances, which led to his departure. Publicly, the ex-Chelsea legend stated that Tomori was allowed to leave temporarily because he couldn’t guarantee him minutes in January 2021.
Tomori went on to help AC Milan win their first Serie A title since 2010-11 with a win on the final day after leaving Chelsea.
Marc Guéhi €24
Marc Guéhi, another young English centre-back who was a bad investment for Chelsea, made just two Carabao Cup appearances with the senior team.
The 21-year-old impressed while on loan at Swansea last season and went on to become an important player for Crystal Palace in the 2021/2022 season.
Tino Livramento £6m
Tino, though not particularly popular among Chelsea fans, Southampton demonstrated serious intent when they paid £6 million for Livramento earlier this summer.
In the following season, the Youngster went on to become one of the Premier League’s most promising players.
Ike Ugbo £4m
After an impressive 2020/21 season with Club Brugge in Belgium, the academy graduate has long been expected to leave Stamford Bridge this summer.
Ugbo, who joined Chelsea as a nine-year-old, was a prolific scorer in the club’s academy but struggled on loan at Barnsley, MK Dons, and Scunthorpe United.
During the 2019/20 season, he spent time in Dutch football with Roda JC, where he rediscover his goalscoring touch, and he netted 17 times in all competitions for Brugge.