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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Lukaku was confident of Chelsea stay

Romelu Lukaku has admitted he was confident of securing a place in Jose Mourinho's team this season, before being loaned out to Everton on transfer deadline day.

Romelu Lukaku battles for the ball in Chelsea's 2-1 win over Aston Villa.
Lukaku is hopeful of impressing Jose Mourinho while on loan at Everton. 

The 20-year-old was on duty with the Belgium national team when he received a phone call on Monday night offering him a season-long move to Goodison Park and he has admitted it came as somewhat of a surprise.

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Lukaku, who returned to Chelsea following a successful season on loan at West Brom, was hopeful of remaining at Stamford Bridge, but revealed he held talks with Jose Mourinho which decided his future.

"I thought I would stay at Chelsea, but I was only 90 per cent sure," he is quoted in the Mirror. "I had some doubts about the game time I would get. At my age, I absolutely have to play. The arrival of Samuel Eto'o had nothing to do with it.

"Jose Mourinho called me and he was clear with me. It is better like that. I like it when a coach is honest. He is the best coach I have had. He wanted to make me better and did it with a firm hand. Together, we agreed that a loan was the best solution.

"Other clubs were interested. For Malaga, I was not allowed to go outside England. West Bromwich Albion was also there but I didn't want to choose the easy option. We must face challenges and mine will be at Everton."

Lukaku will be hoping he has done enough to earn a start for Belgium's World Cup qualifier against Scotland on Friday and the striker insists next year's tournament in Brazil was a key motivator behind his move to Everton.

"For my development and with the World Cup coming up at the end of the season, I cannot afford to stay on the bench," he added. "At Everton, I can continue my progress in a club that likes to play beautiful football.

"I got a phone call at about 7pm on Monday to tell me that I could go to Everton. We were signing balls and T-shirts. I said to the coach that I had something urgent and I went up to my room.

"I wanted to think and talk to my parents. I wanted to know certain things before I agreed. When you are on loan, you have to know that you are really going to play.

"Then I received a call from Roberto Martinez and he reassured me and said lots of nice things. And Kevin Mirallas was in my room with me almost the whole time. He told me how things worked at Everton and he encouraged me to come."


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