Romelu Lukaku will take legal advice in response to Everton chairman Farhad Moshiri’s claims that he decided to leave Merseyside because of a voodoo he encountered on a pilgrimage to Africa.
The Belgian arrived at the club back in July for a fee of £75m and has gone on to claim 16 goals under Jose Mourinho.
Speaking to shareholders earlier this week, Moshiri seemed to claim that Lukaku was set on signing a new deal at Goodison Park
“With Romelu I wasted two summers trying to keep him. I spoke to him, his agent, his mother,” he said.
“We tried to offer him a better offer than Chelsea. He wanted to play for Chelsea though – at that time. ‘The money that agents can get from players moving club is immense and nothing has to be disclosed.
“Bill (Kenwright) has been like a father to many players, but ultimately it’s the agents they rely on. If I tell you what we offered him, you won’t believe it, and we offered him an even better deal.
“His agent came to Finch Farm to sign the contract then Lukaku phones his mother and there was a pilgrimage to Africa and some sort of voodoo that says he had to sign for Chelsea. What can you do?
“He’d gone to LA and wouldn’t go back, his brain had gone. Luis Suarez had to bite a few players to get his move.”
Lukaku, a Roman Catholic, is said to be ‘sad and angry’ at these claims, and his representative has claimed that legal advice will now be sought in response to the comments made by Everton’s chairman.
“Romelu’s decision had nothing to do with voodoo,” he said.
“He distances himself from these beliefs and this statement and will now see what judicial steps can be taken in relation to them.”
“Romelu is very catholic and voodoo is not part of his life or his beliefs.
“He simply had no faith in Everton and no confidence in Mr Moshiri’s project. That is why he did not want to sign on any condition.
“He wanted to make the next step in his career and wanted the security to be able to leave.”
What Moshiri has said here is nothing short of startling, and of course incredibly racist. To use voodoo as an explanation for a black player’s decision that you don’t like strikes at the very heart of the institutional discrimination that still pervades the beautiful game and indeed society as a whole. Lukaku didn’t even go to Africa over the summer.
Lukaku is right to take legal action against such obvious slander – racially motivated slander – but ought to also remember that the nonsense of Moshiri and mediocrity of Everton as a whole is now a thing of the past.