Lukaku tests negative for COVID-19 and will play for Belgium

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Serie A - Parma v Inter Milan

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Romelu Lukaku has tested negative for the novel coronavirus after an outbreak at his club Inter Milan and has travelled to Belgium for their World Cup qualifiers, Belgian officials confirmed on Monday

The participation of the 27-year-old, who is his country’s record goal scorer, in matches against Wales, the Czech Republic and Belarus, was uncertain after four players at Inter tested positive last week, forcing the postponement of the weekend’s Serie A match against Sassuolo.

But Lukaku was negative in tests late last week and again on Monday, after which he was allowed to leave Milan by the city’s health authority, officials said.

His inclusion comes as boost to a Belgian squad who must do without injured skipper Eden Hazard and key midfielder Axel Witsel.

They host Wales in Leuven on Wednesday at the start of the Group E campaign, before taking on the Czech Republic in Prague on Saturday and Belarus at home next Tuesday.

(Writing by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town; Editing by Clare Fallon)