Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku has denied claims made by Everton owner Farhad Moshiri that he opted to leave the club after receiving a “voodoo message”.
Moshiri told shareholders at Everton’s annual general meeting on Tuesday that the 24-year-old Belgium international received the message from “a pilgrimage to Africa”.
“We offered him a better deal than Chelsea and his agent came to Finch Farm (the club’s training centre) to sign the contract,” said Moshiri.
“Robert Elstone (chief executive) was there, everything was in place, there were a few reporters outside, and then in the meeting Lukaku called his mother.
“He said he was on a pilgrimage in Africa or somewhere and he had a voodoo and got the message that he needs to go to Chelsea,” added the 62-year-old Iran-born businessman.
But reacting to the claim, Lukaku through his representative told BBC Sport, “his decision had nothing to do with voodoo”.
“Lukaku is very catholic and voodoo is not part of his life or his beliefs.
“He simply had no faith in Everton and no confidence in Mr Moshiri’s project. That is why he did not want to sign on any condition.
“He wanted to make the next step in his career and wanted the security to be able to leave.
“He distances himself from these beliefs and this statement and will now see what judicial steps can be taken in relation to them,” the spokesperson added.
Lukaku joined Manchester United for £75m in July after rejecting a new deal at Everton.