Romelu Lukaku has said that although he is thankful for what Antonio Conte taught him on and off the field, he is now motivated to do well against the Spurs boss in the Premier League.
Following Lukaku’s struggles at Manchester United, it was under Conte at Inter Milan that the Belgian managed to get his career back on track.
The Chelsea striker had an exceptional 2020/21 campaign, playing a key role in the Nerrazuri’s march to their historic Scudetto.
Lukaku decided to return to Stamford Bridge in the summer transfer window not long after Conte’s exit from the San Siro.
The 28-year-old has admitted that seeing the Spurs boss leave Inter was difficult for him to take and backed the Italian to be successful at Tottenham.
Lukaku told Sky Sports: “I speak regularly with Conte, not just about football but life in general.
“It hurt me when he left Inter, it was one of the toughest moments for me but I didn’t leave because of him. I knew that we could still win things at Inter with Inzaghi.
“I think Conte at Spurs could do what he did at Inter in Serie A. But he also knows that our Chelsea team is really strong.”
Lukaku warned Conte that he now sees him as an opponent, insisting he is looking forward to the challenge of playing against his Spurs side.
The striker added: “I see him as an opponent in the league, I never won against him so that’s an extra motivation for me.
“He was a massive influence on my career, he helped me so much on a mental level.
“He taught me how to be a professional and how to make sacrifices on and off the pitch to be ready for any challenge.”
However, Lukaku was dropped by Thomas Tuchel for the Liverpool match today after his comments in the press this week.
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Conte helped get Lukaku’s career back on track by playing a system that would make the best use of the striker’s attributes. So, if there is anyone that would know how best to keep the Belgian quiet, it is Conte.
Besides, the struggles Lukaku had against Cristian Romero in Inter’s clashes against Atalanta last season, might be another reason that the Chelsea man might not be particularly looking forward to playing Spurs.
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