Romelu Lukaku can emulate Didier Drogba claims Andre Villas-Boas

Andre Villas-Boas backed Romelu Lukaku to become as big a Chelsea legend as Didier Drogba after the Belgium sensation completed his "dream" move to Stamford Bridge.

Lukaku yesterday put the finishing touches on his transfer from Anderlecht to his boyhood idols and Villas-Boas had no fears about throwing the 18-year-old in at the deep end.

Lukaku has been compared to Drogba, who has established himself as one of Chelsea's all-time greats during seven glittering years at the club.

And manager Villas-Boas was confident the new kid on the block could emulate his hero, saying: "If he performs to the level that Drogba has performed for this club then why not?"

But the Portuguese also warned the Blues' latest signing he faced "the biggest competition of his life" trying to oust Drogba, Fernando Torres, Nicolas Anelka, Florent Malouda and Salomon Kalou from the squad.

Villas-Boas added: "He is tremendously powerful, very strong in the challenges.

"Despite his size, he has an explosiveness and an ability to react quickly which looks pretty amazing.

"He just has to break through this competitive level and, for sure, he will get opportunities this year."

Lukaku welcomed comparisons with Drogba, telling his new club's official website, www.chelseafc.com: "We have similar playing styles, but I am also very fast. I want to learn from him how it is to play here at the Bridge and how to prepare for games.

"I can also learn from the other strikers and experienced players in the squad.

"I think if you are clever on and off the pitch you will get accepted and that's what I want."

Lukaku will not be Chelsea's final summer signing if Villas-Boas gets his way.

But the 33-year-old admitted Roman Abramovich would have the final say on whether the club made another bid for Luka Modric before the transfer window closes.

The Blues have seen offers of £22million and £27million rejected for Tottenham playmaker Modric this summer and have been linked with a £30million bid for some weeks.

Spurs chairman Daniel Levy has repeatedly insisted Modric is not for sale at any price but manager Harry Redknapp yesterday admitted it could be in the club's interest to let the 25-year-old leave and spend the transfer fee on reinforcing their squad.

Villas-Boas is already exploring alternatives to Modric, hinting Chelsea would not be held to ransom over the Croatia star and that billionaire owner Abramovich would veto any move if he believed that to be the case.

"It doesn't depend on me. It's not my money!" said the new Blues boss, who also insisted his own opinion on transfers was taken into account.

"It depends on a lot of things. It depends on the club's decision, if they are willing to go forward or not, up to which value, and to decide whether they want to keep the interest in the player."

He added: "Luka, on this particular occasion, is a young player but there would be for sure a sensible price to pay."

Sport
England's women celebrate after their 3rd place play-off win against Germany
Women's World CupFara Williams converts penalty to secure victory and bronze medals
Arts and Entertainment
Ricardo by Edward Sutcliffe, 2014
artPortraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb go on display
News
newsHillary Clinton comments on viral Humans of New York photo of gay teenager
Arts and Entertainment
The gang rape scene in the Royal Opera’s production of Gioachino Rossini’s Guillaume Tell has caused huge controversy
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'