Anderlecht keeping starlet
Anderlecht starlet Romelu Lukaku has shunned reported interest from Chelsea and insists he is staying put.
Last Updated: 14/10/09 5:48pm
Anderlecht starlet Romelu Lukaku has shunned reported interest from Chelsea to stay with his club.
A host of teams, including Manchester United and AC Milan, are known to be keeping tabs on the striking sensation - who is already a first-team regular at the Constant Vanden Stock Stadion, despite being just 16.
Chelsea were believed to be leading the chase for his signature in the summer, but the player's father, Roger, who himself used to play, has advised him to stay in Brussels.
And the youngster is happy to follow his father's advice, although he does have a soft spot for Chelsea.
"I have a picture of (Didier) Drogba on my wall and I love (Nicolas) Anelka. But I have no problems. If I can continue my progress with Anderlecht then perhaps I can join Chelsea," he is quoted as saying.
He made his debut for Anderlecht's first team at the end of last season and they were quick to tie him down to a professional contract.
He started the new season in fine style, with three goals in his first seven matches.
Anderlecht general manager Herman van Holsbeeck admits the attention in Lukaku is substantial.
"Ever since he started to play, they've been calling for him," Van Holsbeeck told Het Nieuwsblad. "But I immediately hang up the phone then.
"It's good that we managed to keep such a player. Together with him and his family we made some agreements concerning the future.
"I think it's better for him to stay here for a while. Meanwhile, some teams have asked to buy him, but let him play with us for a while. We won't do that."
His father Roger admits he is keeping a close eye on Romelu, and his other son Jordan - who is also with Anderlecht.
"I'm trying to protect him as much as possible and want him to get good grades," he said.
"Everyone who has nothing to do with my son has to stay away from him, even family or friends, because now everyone wants to talk to Romelu.
"We decided that staying was the best option, and Romelu agrees with that."