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Romelu Lukaku learned Italian before leaving Manchester United

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It sounds like he really wanted out.

FC Internazionale v US Lecce - Serie A Photo by Marco Luzzani - Inter/Getty Images

Romelu Lukaku has slammed the door on his way out of Manchester United. The Belgian striker, who left for Inter Milan last month, has given an extended interview to ESPN, in which he declared that he “didn’t want to be [playing in England] anymore.” Well, a fair few United fans didn’t want that either.

There are a few juicy details that emerge over the course of an interview that contains effusive praise for his new boss Antonio Conte, and for his new club — for whom he has scored two goals in as many games. The Belgian’s apparent weight gain last season is said to have been the result of a “gastrointestinal problem”, while Lukaku is revealed to have started learning Italian even before Conte was appointed Inter coach back in May. By July, he could “have a conversation with anyone”. It doesn’t sound like he needed a second invitation.

There may well be some truth to Lukaku’s claim that he was “scapegoated” at United, but it’s unlikely to win him many friends. Last season he quite clearly wasn’t up to scratch, scoring fewer league goals than Glenn Murray. He was a poor performer during a poor period for the club as a whole, and it’s little wonder he’s happy to be out of the mess.