West Bromwich Albion face transfer window fight to extend Romelu Lukaku’s loan deal from Chelsea
Steve Clarke, the West Bromwich Albion manager, may be heading for a battle to prevent loan signing Romelu Lukaku from returning to Chelsea in the January transfer window.
The striker has impressed at the Hawthorns and is set to be unleashed on Southampton on Monday night after producing his best West Bromwich Albion performance in the defeat at Newcastle.
However, Albion are powerless if Chelsea recall the £18 million signing next year to cure their lack of goals.
The Belgium international, signed by Andre Villas-Boas, has made only one Premier League start for Chelsea since his move from Anderlecht and manager Roberto Di Matteo has disclosed that there is a clause in the deal that allows him to bring the player back to Stamford Bridge.
Clarke believes the teenager’s education would be better served by remaining at the Hawthorns for the rest of the season.
He said: “I haven’t spoken to Chelsea about what might happen, but I speak to Lukaku and I know he’s happy. He’s in a better place now than he was when he came to us at the start of the season because he’s played matches in the Premier League and he’s been a handful, he’s shown everybody that he’s a big talent and one for the future.