However, if it comes down to a price war – which Everton will no doubt encourage should Lukaku refuse the new contract and decide to leave – Chelsea and Real Madrid remain the clear favourites for his signature this summer.
Mino Raiola had suggested that a deal was only a matter of time, with Lukaku prepared to sign amid speculation regarding his future.
He has bagged a stellar 19 goals, and he would likely improve any side in the Premier League.
Stamford Bridge might not be the best choice for Lukaku though, according to Wilkins.
Lukaku joined Everton in 2014 on a club record fee of £28 million after a spell plagued by loans at Chelsea.
‘If you look at Antonio Conte when he was at Juventus he had Fernando Llorente. While Chelsea have registered interest in re-signing him before as well, Manchester United have jumped into the fray now.
The Blues are sure the prospect of Champions League football and £70million-rated Lukaku admitting he had “unfinished business” at the club means they will land him. I’m expecting the team to take the momentum from the two results, to take the confidence they’ve gained from that and really play on the front foot. If he’s fit, he’ll start and he’ll play and he’ll score goals.
The news will be a crushing blow to Everton, who had hoped to persuade Lukaku to spearhead their European ambitions next season, with the backing of their majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri, the Guardian said.
Lukaku, who’s already the club’s all-time leading goalscorer in the Premier League, was supposed to sign a new contract several times over since the summer.
John Savage, brand manager for Walkers, said: “As long-time supporters of Leicester City, we know that something tangible really goes a long way with fans”.
Sampaoli added: “I think maybe we lost it on one or two fine details. Nothing to do with Mr Raiola, which baffles me”.