FEATURE: A coming of age? Romelu Lukaku. Europe’s finest.

Upon becoming Anderlecht’s youngest debutant aged just 16 in 2006, Romelu Lukaku had begun to pave the way for a trajectory of success many would consider to be relatively unprecedented.

 

A target man with so much more to his game, this is a player who has amassed 136 career goals by the mere age of 23. For the sake of comparison, this is bettered only by Neymar and Messi, and places Lukaku above the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Luis Suarez and Wayne Rooney. This is the calibre of the young Belgian. 

 

As recently as February 2017, Lukaku’s four goal haul in a 6-3 trouncing of AFC Bournemouth at Goodison served as a timely reminder of both his ability and potential; his 16th strike of the Premier League season moving him top of the Golden Boot placings with four months of the season to play.  Lukaku has continued to attract the attention of Europe’s powerhouses, with Bayern Munich, Athletico Madrid and Manchester United marked as suitors of interest, and regardless of how soon a move comes to one of the dominant forces of the European game, a move to a team of this stature is of indisputable inevitability.

Arriving at Goodison Park in the Summer, Ronald Koeman was far too aware of his main transfer priorities. Whilst additions to an Everton side in much need of rejuvenation were of undeniable importance, keeping Lukaku was central to Koeman’s success in his maiden season as Everton boss. Lone behold, Koeman managed to convince Lukaku to stay “for at least one more season”, and he has flourished in an Everton side that has seen a marked improvement in 2017; six games unbeaten including a 4-0 demolition of Manchester City. 

Lukaku possesses ability that cannot be seen as common at 23, and as he rests at the top of the scorers charts in his 5th Premier League season, only time will tell as to just how far this prodigious talent goes in the game, but if I were a betting man? To quote one Harry Redknapp in his words on a young Frank Lampard, “he’s going right to the very top”.

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