Barcelona and Bayern Munich have identified Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku as a possible alternative to Robert Lewandowski and Sadio Mane respectively.
Spanish giants Barcelona want to sign Polish legend Lewandowski this summer after he confirmed he wanted to leave Bayern Munich.
Lewandowski scored 50 goals in 46 games for Bayern last season and 344 goals in 375 appearances during his eight-year stay at the German club.
But the 33-year-old confirmed earlier in the week that he was looking for a new challenge this summer, saying his ‘story is over’ at Bayern Munich.
Given Lewandowski’s stance, Barcelona are optimistic they will bring him to the Nou Camp in the coming weeks, but Chelsea’s Lukaku has emerged as a back-up option.
Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo say Barcelona will look to move for wantaway striker Lukaku if a deal for Lewandowski fails to materialise.
Lukaku, who only returned to Chelsea last summer, is keen to leave Stamford Bridge after a dismal season in which he scored just eight Premier League goals.
The Belgian would ideally like to return to Inter Milan but it remains to be seen whether the Italians are able to secure his signature, even if Lukaku takes a pay cut.
But Lukaku is not short of options this summer as reports in Spain say Bayern Munich are also looking at Lukaku as a replacement for Lewandowski if they fail to sign Mane from Liverpool.
Mane has reportedly agreed a deal with Bayern but the clubs still need to reach an agreement for a player who helped Liverpool reach the Champions League final last month and challenge for the quadruple.
Chris Sutton, the former Premier League striker, has said it will be a ‘massive blow’ for Liverpool if influential forward Mane does leave Anfield.
‘If you’re Liverpool, you don’t want to sell him for any amount,’ he told BBC Radio 5 Live’s Monday Night Club.
‘They would bounce back strongly with Mane still in a Liverpool shirt. I’m not saying he is irreplaceable, because Klopp’s recruitment has been excellent, but Liverpool’s level of consistency has been down to that forward line.
‘Mane has been so versatile – he plays off the left, centrally in that false nine position – and I think they would struggle to replace him like for like really quickly.
‘I can’t think of another player who would come in quickly and do the job he has done. I think it would be a massive blow to Liverpool if he left.’
Former Italy star Antonio Cassano, meanwhile, said last month he would boycott Barcelona games if they signed struggling Chelsea striker Lukaku.
Speaking on BoboTV, the former Roma, Real Madrid, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Sampdoria star said: ‘I’m in love with Barca’s philosophy, but if they sign Lukaku I won’t watch a game anymore.
‘He can’t play three passes with Chelsea where he has no competition, at Barcelona they play 55 passes before going for goal, how could he do it?’
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