Lukaku offers 'ideal characteristics' for Conte's Inter – Zola

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The Italian great talked up a potential move to the Serie A side for the Manchester United forward, who he thinks fits the club's manager perfectly

Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku is an "ideal" signing for Antonio Conte's Inter, according to Gianfranco Zola.

Inter head coach Conte has made no secret of his desire to sign Lukaku, who is at the centre of ongoing and, so far, fruitless negotiations between the Serie A side and United.

Lukaku – contracted to the Red Devils until 2022 with the option of a further year after joining from Everton in a £75million deal in 2017 – has not played for United during their pre-season tour.

Zola witnessed Lukaku firsthand during his time as Chelsea assistant last season and the Italian great talked up the Belgium striker's potential move to Milan.

"Lukaku would make a big impact at Inter, as he has the ideal characteristics for Conte's football and has the kind of physicality from the Premier League that puts him a step above the rest in Serie A," he told FCInterNews.

"Having said that, I believe the real strength at Inter will be Conte himself. He's really fired up after the Chelsea experience and then taking a year off. He'll want to transmit that determination to the squad.

"We know how good Antonio is at transmitting grit, intensity and sporting aggression. I am sure Inter will be one of the principle antagonists to Juventus this season."

Lukaku, who has acknowledged a desire to play in Italy and hinted his future could be away from Old Trafford with United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer preferring Marcus Rashford up front, scored 12 Premier League goals last season.

The 26-year-old scored 15 goals across all competitions as United finished sixth in the Premier League and lost to Barcelona in the Champions League quarter-finals. 

He has also earned the public backing of Conte as a player the manager would like to have with him in Serie A. 

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"He is a United player and for this reason we must show great respect for the club, for the player and also for my own players," he told a media conference earlier this month

"Lukaku is a player that I like because I consider him a player that could improve our team.

“On one side is my will and my hope. On the other side we will see what we find with the club."

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