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Romelu Lukaku spending too much time on the fringes

06/10/2014  Comments (6)  jump
Neil Jones in the Echo suggests Evertonians are entitled to expect a little more from Lukaku than they are getting right now.

» Read the full article at Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (6)

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Jim Bennings
1 Posted 06/10/2014 at 21:54:06
Romelu Lukaku is being shown up at the minute by Steven Naismith.

One man is giving 110 percent, is getting himself into scoring positions, is doing the basic things such as receiving the ball, holding it and laying it off; that man did not cost 㿈 million but was a free transfer 2 years ago.

Now I don't want to go down the boring road again of Lukaku's transfer value, I understand that is Martinez not Lukaku who made that decision, but I am becoming more and more concerned by Lukaku and his overall demeanor and body language. He is, and has been playing the game, disinterested, almost as though now he's had the World Cup, he's had his big money move away from Chelsea, he looks a pale shadow of what we first signed on loan a year ago.

There were always concerns about his commitment when things aren't going his way, and it was Jose Mourinho who first stated the one reason he was frozen out at Chelsea was his lack of motivation. Well, all Lukaku is doing at present is proving every word Mourinho said was true. It certainly looks as though he has serious motivation issues.

The guy doesn't posses the same passion and desire as Steven Naismith to get himself into scoring positions, I mean it should have been Lukaku where Naismith was getting on the end of Baines cross, we talk about a lack of service, well what was that cross?? That was perfect for a centre forward but Rom was nowhere to be seen.

It's not even just his inability to be in the box, it's his all-round shocking control; he doesn't get his body between ball and man, he doesn't win enough headers – again look at the headers Naismith wins.

I don't know how or when but something has got to change soon regarding Lukaku. Martinez needs to get inside his head and reignite some kind of passion and start getting him more hours on the training ground. We can't blame the toe injury, if it was that bad, he wouldn't and shouldn't be on the pitch.

People's patience will only last so much longer.

James Stewart
2 Posted 06/10/2014 at 22:32:58
Quite right. Forgot the price tag his performances have not been good enough. Doesn't hold the ball up or run the channels. Must do a lot better.
Andy Crooks
3 Posted 06/10/2014 at 22:25:03
Jim, Naismith took serious abuse on this site when he was played out of position and struggled. He was always hard working but has flourished in his best position.

Lukaku is playing in a style and line-up that, due to injuries, is not enabling him to show his best. He is low on confidence and has carried an injury. The bile towards him over the last few days on this site is truly remarkable and totally unfair.

He has shown himself to be a fine striker and as the team grows in confidence we will see him at his best. When we signed him, did you immediately declare it to be a mistake? All of us can point out when a player has a poor game but slamming Lukaku on every thread is pointless.

Jim Bennings
4 Posted 06/10/2014 at 23:07:39
No, Andy, when we signed him, I was happy because I thought we were getting the same hungry-looking Lukaku as we saw early last season, the game-changing, match-winning Lukaku.

I understand the injuries and entire setup hasn't been favourable for him so far this season but that doesn't excuse the fact he is not pulling his weight or putting in a shift at the minute.

We just can't keep making excuses for him. If he's playing out left too much then Martinez needs blaming and asking why buy? If not ,then why is Lukaku drifting our there?

Why is he not down the middle and using himself as the spearhead for our attack?

Jim Bennings
5 Posted 06/10/2014 at 23:15:58
I can stand here now and say I desperately desperately want Rom to come good and score 18-20 goals and put in big performances, I don't deny I was a big fan of him right throughout last season and I wanted him here, not at 㿈 million exactly... but I thought, "Okay, he guarantees you goals, let's have it." But I can't hide my disappointment with him so far.

Yes, he can get better, he has to get better doesn't he?

So come on, Rom, bring back the good times of last season.

Harold Matthews
6 Posted 06/10/2014 at 23:43:07
When Eto'o had a free tap-in against Krasnodar, two defenders were marking Lukaku. When unchallenged Naismith scored on Sunday, Jags and Lukaku were each marked by two close attending defenders. His presence attracts people and leaves space for others.

Last season, fans were delighted when he scored but when he didn't they moaned like hell about his touch and not being able to hold the ball up. It was a major gripe. His ball-retaining ability was zero. With no team-mates around him it was a give-away every time. The lad took plenty of stick, especially on ToffeeWeb.

This season, probably with the help of Dunc and a few quiet words from Joe Royle, he is doing a much better job of holding and laying off the ball. Yes, he's still fumbling quite a bit but he's getting there. It can't be easy. For him, it's a whole new way of playing but he's an intelligent lad and knows it has to be done. Not just for Everton but also for his place in the Belgium team where his narrow range of abilities hinder his selection.

When Martinez convinced the club to buy Lukaku, I'll bet he described the player he will gradually become over the next two or three years. Right now he will have been instructed not to rush things but to try and concentrate on getting it right and, like all people learning new skills, he will look slightly slow and not too good.

I also kept a close eye on him when Baines, Pienaar and Naismith were engaged in their usual fast, intricate passing. On one occasion, he successfully joined in but at other times he lagged behind and was unsure about where to position himself. This is another area he will improve.

Martinez is taking risks and I like it. Pienaar confessed to not being anywhere near ready and was shocked to be picked but he needed game time. The same with Oviedo and young Browning. Hibbert could have easily gone the 90 minutes but Tyias was treated to a 75,000 Old Trafford experience he will never forget. The lad thrives on confidence and this will have done him the world of good. Let's not forget, players dropping from the senior England squad to the U21s cost our lad his place.

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