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."

News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
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

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star