I'm proud of Juventus interest, admits Lukaku

The striker says reports linking him with the Italian champions are welcome but has stressed he is solely focused on Belgium's opening World Cup game for now
Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku admits he is proud to hear of reported interest from Juventus.

The 21-year-old is likely to leave Chelsea this summer following his return from a loan spell at Everton, with Wolfsburg among the clubs thought to be interested in his signature.

Italian champions Juve have emerged in recent days as reported frontrunners in the race for his signature and Lukaku concedes the rumours are welcome to hear.

"I'm proud of Juventus' interest in me, but I'm just thinking of Belgium for now," he is quoted as saying by Sky Italia.

Marc Wilmots' men have not been at a World Cup since South Korea/Japan in 2002, when they reached the round of 16.

The appearance was Belgium's sixth in succession, making their absence from the 2006 and 2010 finals all the more glaring, and Chelsea striker Lukaku said the European nation will be desperate to perform.

"It's been 12 years that we haven't played in a big tournament, so now we are here and hopefully we will show the people that we can play good football," Lukaku said.

"We don't feel much pressure, we are a young team, we are relaxed, everybody is confident in themselves.

"We have a good team, we have already played for four years together so we are ready now.

"We all started [our preparations] in Belgium before we left so we know how it is to play in Belgium but it's obviously a great moment to play for your country and especially at a World Cup.

"We are all very proud we are Belgian so now we have a chance to represent our country at the greatest competition in the world."

Lukaku, 21, said the feats of past heroes at World Cups makes playing at the event all the more special.

"The World Cup is a bigger dream because all the big players played at a World Cup like Ronaldo, Thierry Henry, [Zinedine] Zidane. They all played at a World Cup.

"So now we are here but it's not about me, it's about my team-mates.

"We are here as a team, it has been 12 years now so we want to perform well."

Belgium open their Group H campaign against Algeria in Belo Horizonte on Tuesday, and Lukaku said the challenge should be similar to that presented to them in their recent 1-0 friendly win over Tunisia.

"[It will be] the same [type of] game as against Tunisia but they (Algeria) have more qualities.

"But we are ready, we have a lot of confidence in ourselves and we are here to show our best football and hopefully we will do well," he added.