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Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Romelu Lukaku could not turn down the chance to join Manchester United after hearing Jose Mourinho's plan to "rebuild the club,'' but cautioned that the Old Trafford club aren't getting a forward at the level of Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski or Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo.
Mourinho was in charge when Lukaku was given the green light to leave Stamford Bridge, but three years on he now sees the striker as a key piece of the puzzle at Old Trafford.
United forked out an initial £75 million for the Belgium international, whose mind was made up by his manager's plans rather than the persuasive powers of close friend Paul Pogba.
"We were just on holiday together,'' Lukaku said of the United and France midfielder, who he was away with in Los Angeles as the move was completed.
"At the end of the day I had to make my own choices.
"It was the conversation I had with the manager that really convinced me the most, the plans and how he wanted to rebuild the club and he wanted me to be part of it.
"It feels great [to be a United player],'' Lukaku said in Washington. "It is something I always wanted.
"I always wanted to play for a club of this stature. Now I am here I want to take my chance and try to deliver as much as I could for the club.
"I don't want to talk about personal ambitions. I just want to work hard on a daily basis and win as many games as I can.''
Lukaku highlighted that his goal was to join a winner, and feels has done that at Old Trafford.
"For me, it's all about winning,'' he added. "I want to win and now I'm at a club where winning is the most important thing.
"It's something inside of me, so I just want to win and I want to help my teammates deliver wins game in, game out.
Lukaku's goal against City was a goal any of Europe's elite would have been proud of, but Lukaku knows he is a way off being considered in the same bracket as the likes of Lewandowksi or Ronaldo.
"Yeah, of course [I want to reach that level] but winning trophies at the end of the day [is key],'' Lukaku said. "At the end of the day you want to win trophies.
"I'm a goalscorer, I've always scored goals throughout my career. Also in Europe, when I played in the Europa League, my record is really good.
"Now I think the Champions League is the next stage where I have to prove myself and the club wants to do well in it as well.''
Asked if he was at the level of Lewandowski and Ronaldo right now, he quickly replied: "No, no, no -- I'm far from that level.
"Drogba is more of a hold-up player, a target-man. I prefer to have ball to feet and run in behind.
"It's something we're totally different at. We might have physical similarities but I think we're totally different players.
"And I'm Romelu Lukaku -- at the end of the day I want to create my own history. I'm at Manchester United, he was at Chelsea.''