Romelu Lukaku’s move to Old Trafford was one that was not expected to be completed the way it was done.
The 24-year old was a Chelsea reject so he moved to Everton. At Goodison Park he blossomed. When the Premier League champions were reported to be set to sign him again and sell Diego Costa, it was what everyone believed.
However, Manchester United stole the deal to land the player. Ironically, it is Jose Mourinho who sold the player while he was at Stamford Bridge. Last summer Mourinho broke the football record when he lured Paul Pogba back to Old Trafford. The Portuguese sanctioned the deal costing £89 million paid to Juventus.
That deal brought back English football to the peak of transfer market deals – a tag Spanish football were holding firmly. Since when Newcastle paid £15 million for Alan Shearer in 1996, the English sides have not help the world record for transfer fees. It was Spain and Italy that were spending that much. The advert of Chinese and Arabian money tilted the deals as well but their presence was scattered across Europe.
Before the Pogba deal, Real Madrid broke records to land Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane and Cristiano Ronaldo. The record was also broken in 2013 to land Gareth Bale from Tottenham. However, since when Mourinho joined English football, he has been a big spender as Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich backed him.
The Premier League had gone on a little break after peaking in the market in 2007 where £609.36 million was expended. That was when Liverpool paid almost £30 million for Fernando Torres while United paid £30 million for Luis Nani and Anderson. This record was broken in 2013 when the deals reached £629.54 million. Last summer, that record went up to £1.16 billion, well with the big TV rights money coming in.
With deals like Lukaku happening already, at potential £90 million plus add-ons, the Premier League would easily break the transfer record. An all-time record is in sight.