By Will Butcher
Romelu Lukaku and Kevin Mirallas were forced to stump up £13,000 in private jet fees to fly back from Cyprus in midweek after Everton refused to foot the bill, according to a report.
The pair and their fellow Belgium internationals based in the north-west of England hired a private jet to make a speedy return ahead of the weekend’s Premier League fixtures.
Burnley, Liverpool and both Manchester clubs agreed to stump up the £6,500 per head cost but the Toffees refused because Everton do not play until Monday night, when they face Sunderland.
According to the Daily Mirror, striker Lukaku, who scored twice as Roberto Martinez’s side strolled to a 3-0 win in the 2018 World Cup qualifier, is upset with the decision.
“All the other clubs agreed to pay the £6,500 cost for their players,” The Mirror quoted a source as saying. “Lukaku wasn’t happy when Everton told him they wouldn’t pay.
“Mirallas was in the same position, and the two of them ended up paying for the flights themselves.”
This comes after a window full of speculation surrounding the powerful striker, who was strongly linked with a return to Chelsea before deciding to stay at Everton.
Everton’s number 10 left Chelsea for Goodison Park two years ago when he became the Merseysiders’ £28million club-record signing following an impressive season on loan at the club.
Lukaku has scored an impressive 61 goals in 127 appearances for Everton, including 25 in 46 matches last season in a team that finished in a disappointing 11th in the Premier League.