Jol: I chose Bent over Everton loanee Lukaku

The Fulham boss decided not to pursue the young Belgian's signature having already brought in Aston Villa's forgotten man, while Sam Allardyce was disappointed to miss out
Fulham manager Martin Jol admits his regret at missing out on Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku last season, but claims he chose Darren Bent over the Belgian this summer.

After sealing a year-long loan move to Everton on transfer deadline day, the 20-year-old will be hoping to rediscover the form that saw him hit 17 Premier League goals during a similar stint at West Brom last season, but Jol insists he held no interest after bringing fellow loanee Bent to Craven Cottage.

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“I wanted to have him on loan last year,” Jol admitted.

“But, they wanted him to come back if he would have done well before January, and I said 'no, I want him for the whole season', I was wrong, I should have taken him for the four or five months.

“This year was different because they couldn't make their mind up and they needed their strikers.

“On the last day, he went to Everton and there was no chance for us. Because we already had Bent, and you can only have a [certain amount of] similar players.”

The Dutchman was not alone in his pursuit of the young striker, as Sam Allardyce admits he held a long-standing interest in bringing Lukaku on loan to West Ham.

“I chased him all summer to be honest,” Allardyce told reporters.

“But when it became the final day of the deadline we missed out an Everton managed to secure his position. We were more or less told he was going back to West Brom.

“We tried, but didn't manage to clinch it.”