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Feb 2, 2011

Chelsea failed in Lukaku bid

Chelsea made an approach to sign the €30 million-rated Romelu Lukaku during the January transfer window, according to Anderlecht general manager Herman Van Holsbeeck.

Blues owner Roman Abramovich spent in excess of £70 million on transfer deadline day, bringing in former Benfica centre-back David Luiz and Liverpool striker Fernando Torres.

The sudden outlay of cash subsequently drew criticism from Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, who accused Chelsea of hypocritical conduct in the transfer market.

However, it now seems Abramovich's winter bill could have been in excess of £100 million had he got all three of his targets, with 17-year-old Belgium forward Lukaku earmarked as the new Didier Drogba.

"Chelsea wanted to buy this winter," Van Holsbeeck told Belgian TV show Reyers. "We said no. He is not ready, and we still keep one to two seasons. His price? €30 million."

Meanwhile, John Terry has responded to Wayne Rooney's warning that Chelsea will be flying thanks to the new arrivals of Torres and Luiz, by admitting the Chelsea camp is "buzzing".

Carlo Ancelotti's men beat Sunderland 4-2 on Tuesday in a display of attacking football that had been missing since the opening two months of the season, and Terry has not given up hope of cutting down Manchester United's 10-point advantage.

"To sign Torres and Luiz is a huge statement for the club," Terry told the London Evening Standard. "There is a buzz around the camp and it is great that we're in the market again for two massive signings.

"Everyone has been going on about the ageing players and we have just brought in two very young players who are hopefully going to be around the club for a long time. They can bring so much going forward and defensively.

"I'm delighted Fernando is on the same side. We have had some great battles. I was very impressed when he made his debut against us and scored. He is one of the strongest out there. His pace is frightening, his heading is unbelievable for his height and his finishing is top drawer, as we have seen against us a few times.

"I'm just delighted [we've signed him] because there were rumours that a few other clubs had been chasing him."

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