Where does Romelu Lukaku rank among extensive list of Chelsea striker flops?

Some clubs are really good at buying strikers. Chelsea are not one of them.

With reports that Romelu Lukaku has instructed his agent to get him back to Inter Milan this summer, it looks like he is destined to be forever remembered a Chelsea flop.

When he returned to the club last summer it felt like it would be a story of redemption, but alas it is not to be.

However, Lukaku can at least console himself in the knowledge that he is far from alone when it comes to strikers who hugely disappointed at Chelsea.

Chris Sutton

When Chelsea paid £10million for Chris Sutton in 1999, the only thing that looked more over-inflated than the transfer fee was the player's ego.

In fairness, Sutton was a Premier League-winner with Blackburn, where he boasted a respectable record of 59 goals in 161 games. That total included two 21-goal seasons, although two absolutely duff ones too.

During his time at Blackburn, Sutton had all but retired himself from international football (after playing 11 minutes against Cameroon) due to considering himself too good to play for England B.

That made his 1 goal in 28 games for Chelsea very satisfying to watch, as he blew his big move and cemented his spot in the flops hall of fame.

Paul Furlong

It may be difficult for modern fans to accept, but once upon a time Chelsea were signing strikers from the Championship for club-record fees.

In the early 1990s, Paul Furlong was really impressing for Watford in the second tier. Two seasons of scoring at roughly a goal every two games inspired Chelsea to fork out what was then an absolutely astronomical £2.3million for him.

he did help them get to the semi-finals of the Cup Winners Cup, but managed just 18 goals in 85 matches before being shipped out to Birmingham City at a loss.

Andriy Shevchenko

For years, Andriy Shevchenko was arguably the most feared striker in Europe due to his exploits at AC Milan. His time at the San Siro had seen him win a Ballon d'or, Serie A, the Coppa Italia and the Champions League.

He left Milan having scored 175 goals in 296 games, leaving him as the club's second all-time top goalscorer, and Chelsea looked like they had pulled off a real coup by getting him.

It took a British-record fee of £30.8million to do that, though, and it's hard to say they got any real value from him.

In fact, his nine Premier League goals in two seasons came at a cost of around £3.42m each. The previous two seasons saw Shevchenko score 54 goals in 80 games. Chelsea couldn't have known it at the time, but they had paid top-dollar for a spent force.

Adrian Mutu

Adrian Mutu was one of the first big-money signings through the door at Chelsea following the takeover from Roman Abramovich. The Romanian was a symbol of their new wealth, with Chelsea paying nearly £16million for him.

He started brilliantly too and it looked like money well-spent. However, it quickly unravelled as he fell out with Jose Mourinho before being banned for seven months due to drug use.

Mutu scored just six Premier League goals in 27 appearances for Chelsea, although their financial hit was at least lessened by the player being ordered by the court to pay then €17m in damages.

Mateja Kezman

Bringing strikers from the Eredivise to the Premier League should come with some kind of warning or caution. The likes of Alfonso Alves, Jozy Altidore, Jon Dahl Tomasson and Vincent Janssen have been true Premier League horror-stories.

Chelsea were not immune to falling into this particular trap either, as they took the plunge on Mateja Kezman.

Kezman had blasted 129 goal in four years at PSV Eindhoven and was joining one of the top clubs in the country, but even that wasn't a sure thing.

The Serbian found the step-up just too much and managed just seven goals in all competitions for Chelsea before they gave up on him.

Robert Fleck

Robert Fleck's move to Chelsea ahead of the first Premier League season was a very controversial one.

Chelsea made a club-record £2.1million bid for the Scotsman but Norwich turned it down flat. Fleck was having none of that, though, and he went on strike to force the Canaries' hand.

He was successful in doing that, but there was another controversial twist when Norwich insisted on a clause in the deal preventing Chelsea from playing Fleck against them when they were due to meet two weeks later.

To the delight of the Norwich fans, Fleck was atrocious at Chelsea and managed just three Premier League goals in 40 matches before being shipped off on loan deals to Bolton and Bristol City.

He did later return to Norwich, but he was never the same player again.

Romelu Lukaku

Manager of Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel and Romelu Lukaku

Sometimes, it is just not meant to be for a player at a particular club, is it?

Romelu Lukaku was a self-confessed Chelsea fan and he got his big move there as a teenager in 2011. He never really got his chance there, though, despite very successful loan spells at West Brom and Everton, and he was moved on without ever getting on the scoresheet for Chelsea.

When he returned 11 years later it looked like a much better fit. Lukaku was an experienced and proven goalscorer and big things were expected, especially after the £97.5million fee.

Again, though, it hasn't really worked out. He appears to be at constant loggerheads with Thomas Tuchel and it looks like he will be shown the door again this summer.

Should he go, he does so with a combined record of 15 goals in 59 games for Chelsea.

Fernando Torres

You have to congratulate Fernando Torres here. Being the biggest club flop on a list that includes the name Winston Bogarde is a feat that is surely tough to achieve.

Fernando Torres is not only the biggest ever Chelsea flop but arguably the biggest ever Premier League flop too.

Chelsea paid £50million for the Spaniard in 2011 after he had scored 65 Premier League goals in just 102 appearances for Liverpool. It looked like it was a major coup, but the reality was very different.

In total, Torres actually played more Premier League games for Chelsea than he did Liverpool, but he could only manage 20 goals.

He won more honours at Stamford Bridge though, it must be stressed, including a Champions League, but that Premier League title continued to evade him.

READ MORE: Where next for Cristiano Ronaldo? Real Madrid, PSG and Newcastle United all interested

Latest news