(Stanley Chou/Getty Images)
The Belgian's fitness has been a cause for concern since he was withdrawn just half an hour into the friendly with Dundee last Tuesday but Roberto Martinez is confident that his main striker will play against Watford.
Lukaku came off at Dens Park feeling what his manager described as "heavy-legged" and Martinez has dismissed fears that he damaged a hamstring.
The chances of him appearing in Duncan Ferguson's testimonial appear slim, however.
“We’ll assess him” he told evertontv. “I don’t think we’re going to take any risks with him on Sunday [against Villarreal].
“I would say from a medical point of view, he is fully fit. It is just a case of making sure we give him a good introduction to work with the group because he’s not had a chance to do that yet.
“I wouldn’t risk him in a pre-season game - but Rom will be fully fit for the start of the season against Watford at home.”
Reader Comments (53)
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1 Posted 01/08/2015 at 18:23:37
3 Posted 01/08/2015 at 18:37:01
I would much rather see Mirallas who has a 1 in 3 scoring rate.
Or we could buy a new striker? Unlikely I know...
4 Posted 01/08/2015 at 18:55:40
5 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:13:21
6 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:17:21
Martinez is too stubborn, he keeps referring to the way Barcelona play, but taking away the clearly superior talent they have, the one thing that has set Barcelona aside over the last 7 year's is how damn hard they work when they have NOT got the ball.
They press, they harry, they close down and hurry the opposition into a mistake until they have the ball back themselves.
When does this Everton team ever do that??
We are not even a good passing team anymore let alone a team that presses opponents relentlessly.
Also this team is nowhere near as fit physically as the sides Moyes had. The guy had his failings no doubt, but he had the physical side of things bang in tune more often than not.
7 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:25:56
8 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:36:06
If you have to be substituted after 30 minutes while grabbing at your hamstring, with the excuse being "heavy legs", doesn't thy mean you're not fully fit? Honestly, it can't be both. Why lie? Why not just tell the damn truth for once!!
I could see us doing a Newcastle from a few years back. Completely lacklustre performances with a weak manager and not be able to pull off an escape.
I honestly think we dodged a bullet last season. This summer was the time for the supporters to force the board into bringing in a qualified manager for a club the stature of Everton. But last season's escape led to supporters saying "Give him one more season, give him at least 10 games", etc.
The guy came to us having relegated his previous club. And he's using all the same tired sound bites about us that he did Wigan. So we ask why the board doesn't show ambition? The fan base needs to look in the mirror for that answer. We're an apathetic group, settling and settling over and over. Do any of you think for one second that the side across the park would have accepted a new manager that had just been relegated the prior season? Hell no. But we do, and we're giving him a third season.
9 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:37:31
10 years ago Swansea were in Division 4 or whatever it's called these days! Then in came a chairman with a long term strategy and plan and now I look at their team with a degree of envy! How did this happen?! As a child growing up in Swansea I never thought this could ever happen.
A chairman with vision is a must! It really hits home how one of the Giants of the English game are standing still! A bad start to the season will have us in big trouble! As teams are definitely coming up behind us!
Also, I mentioned to a number of my mates the apparent interest in Ashley Williams and the collective response was "Why would he go there?"
12 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:50:35
13 Posted 01/08/2015 at 19:57:18
Many clubs have already bedded in their new signings and some have already scored. Lambert just scored two for instance. Other clubs just have to stop Rom and Kevin and then we will not score.Our whole midfield who regularly start games do not score and that includes the much vaunted Barkley. It would be better to have Jags up front as he scored five last season (I am being sarcastic).Who will start for us against Watford and who will be on the bench ? We have a choice between Howard, Coleman, Jagielka, Stones and Baines with Barry and McCarthy in midfield Cleverley, Mirallas, Barkley and Lukaku if fit.The bench is dependant upon who is walking fit. Perhaps Robles, Naismith, Kone, Oviedo with Osman and a kid or two. There will be no Gibson, Hibbert, McGeady, Besic, Pienaar and Deulofeu. Who on earth is going to come off the bench as a game changer? Certainly not Kone or Naismith. Osman when fit is still our best bet and that is pretty dismal.
15 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:26:28
I take it, 'with the group', he is talking about the team. So, correct me if I am wrong, did he not play with them all last season and should this have not given him a good introduction, or am I reading this comment wrong?
16 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:36:50
What on Earth does that mean?
17 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:39:05
He must have been around Finch Farm being assessed while half the squad went all the way to Leeds. So what on Earth does Martinez mean?
"Not had a chance to do that yet"!!! Wait, Roberto, he has been with them all pre-season, for Christ's sake.
18 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:43:18
How's Lukaku not been with the group??
He's been here two years and played in how many pre-season matches this summer??
Talk sense man for Christ sake.
Maybe Barkley was shit today because he encountered more "sticky grass"?
Dear God another season of this.
19 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:44:56
I think Martinez means well and wants to do the right thing but don't treat us like idiots. I find I never read his post match comments anymore, preferring to wait for Ken Buckley's take to get a proper feel for the game. Ken's always quite positive but does it in the right way.
Anyway, I hope Rom's fit for Watford because we're fucked if he isn't.
20 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:48:45
Roberto dearest, can't we prepare a proper squad for the start of a season for heavens sake? We knew we needed some kind of potency upfront all of last season, you know your assembled midfield isn't exactly goalscoring.
Do something, how about inspiring actions for a change instead of inspiring words? Deflating stuff.
21 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:52:25
Who's betting now he's not fit for Watford, there'll be another bullshit statement Saturday morning saying he's not quite ready blah blah blah.
It could also be a factor why Kone was pulled at half-time today, knowing his injury record he couldn't possibly play 90 mins today and expect to be fit for next Saturday as well.
Let's wait and see, but I'm feeling decidedly uneasy and we haven't kicked a ball yet!!
22 Posted 01/08/2015 at 20:57:16
It's so disheartening........
24 Posted 01/08/2015 at 21:20:04
25 Posted 01/08/2015 at 21:24:30
26 Posted 01/08/2015 at 21:27:22
27 Posted 01/08/2015 at 21:35:33
We'll soon find out... the new season is upon us.
28 Posted 01/08/2015 at 21:44:49
Going on that statement, it will take over a month for any new signings to play, as he will have to have a good introduction of working with the group, as he won't have had the chance yet. (That's scary!)
29 Posted 01/08/2015 at 22:05:32
All my hopes that last season could have been a blip... well, they are already gone, and Roberto's bullshit talk has got my goat already.
I'm hitting the gin.
30 Posted 01/08/2015 at 23:45:39
And these 'heavy legs' of Lukaku's could become a convenient excuse for a poor start to the season.
31 Posted 02/08/2015 at 00:51:41
32 Posted 02/08/2015 at 01:41:49
33 Posted 02/08/2015 at 02:15:55
Also equally worrying.
34 Posted 02/08/2015 at 03:16:13
More likely, it's the typical mysterious disappearing money, taking out loans we don't need, so Bill's "Friends of Everton" can get richer off the back of high interest payments.
If RM gets the push, forget aspiring towards someone like Klopp (who also has a relegation on his CV by the way). The new manager will have to work on the same budget as his predecessors.
I was interested to see Stephen Brown's take on Swansea's renaissance. A couple of years back, we played them at Goodison in an evening kick off, and I met a lad from the family that built the stadium. Not a billionaire amongst them. Just a man with a plan.
Interesting to see their fans now see themselves as ahead of us.
Lowest transfer spend of the Prem, and half the Championship, so far. Not like we're not in need of the players is it?
35 Posted 02/08/2015 at 08:04:28
36 Posted 02/08/2015 at 08:13:41
You're spot on Stephen. I doubt we will see any action on the transfer front (unless they sell John Stones) from the club until the last few days of the window.
Lukaku, if fit, will lead the line next week but I don't think we play to his main strength of running on to a ball and terrorising the opposition defenders. Once we hold up play, I think he becomes a lot less effective as a goalscorer.
I hope, but don't really expect, that we will all be pleasantly surprised to see the Club buy a sensational midfield maestro in the nest week or two. (Honestly, only been drinking tea!)
I think this season, we will see if the manager has got it, or not. I'm hoping we will be faster and more effective this season than we were last; but I don't think we will be as good as the first season under Martinez.
We have a lot of old players that we try to keep going; but they should have been replaced by quality players years ago. I'm not so sure, if Martinez were replaced, as some want, that we would attract a manager who would do much, if any, better.
I looked at the match yesterday and, although I like him, Naismith was ineffective. His passing was poor and so was his vision. Kone? Well, he looks fitter, I'll give him that but whether he'll do a job as a main striker, I'm not so sure.
If Lukaku is fit, I'd agree that Mirallas is probably our best option to play just behind him. I don't think Naismith should be in the team but that's where we hit the brick wall.
Not just Naismith, but Pienaar and Ossie, should not be first team regulars, nor Kone. Squad players, fair enough, but not the first team.
However, the money will not be there to replace them, so it's almost certain that they will be first-team regulars, unless not fit.
We're stuck with the same players with maybe and addition or two; Cleverley and Delefeu are good signings but that's a total outlay of ٢ million. Dearie me... frightening!
38 Posted 02/08/2015 at 09:01:22
All this talk from RM about securing 2 players early on (with minimal spends) and 2 later on (when Sky money / player sales happen) is just coprolite to cover up our normal transfer MO.
39 Posted 02/08/2015 at 09:52:37
Stones will be sold and we will sign more mediocre players with the funds if there is enough time left in the window.
Goodison is an embarrassment. Talk about let it all go to pot!
We have become a crap club with only one redeeming feature -- wonderful passionate support, which unfortunately won't last forever.
Yes, I am a very cheesed-off Evertonian of over 50 years.
40 Posted 02/08/2015 at 09:56:40
41 Posted 02/08/2015 at 10:03:52
Passionate support or not, the patience of that support will be in very short supply this season unlike last where the majority were prepared to give Martinez the benefit thanks to a solid first season.
This season, a bad start could turn into a fatal one for Martinez and the one thing we can't have is Goodison like the anxiety-ridden mortuary it was all last season.
We can't allow malaise to fester on deep into the season like last time but, whatever happens with Martinez, let's not forget the real problem remains the board at Everton.
42 Posted 02/08/2015 at 10:10:27
Whether it's the board or management, it's completely inept. The pre-season once again appears to be a complete shambles with players picking up muscle injuries and appearing "heavy legged".
43 Posted 02/08/2015 at 10:18:23
We have all been saying this since June. The season starts next week, we have 2 central defenders, 7 first teamers down with hamstring injuries, 3 strikers at the club 1 injured the other 2 not worth a toss in a bucket. The papers linking Lukaku, Stones, Mirallas and McCarthy with last-minute moves away and a manager spouting complete bollocks every time he opens his mouth.
So yes, mate, 7 days to sort it out, to get players in, to get them to gel and then win more games than last season.
44 Posted 02/08/2015 at 10:28:49
The season hasn't even begun yet and I genuinely get the sense that some ToffeeWebers would like to see us as a club fail, just so they could say "I told you so!" That type of attitude is pathetic to say the least. I love my club and will SUPPORT them. I may not always like some of the things that happen, but i'll always wish them the very best.
And one final thing. How does a thread relating to Lukaku being fit, resort to the posts being entirely negative and anti-Martinez, anti-Kenwright? It makes little or no sense and is one of the reasons why so many people get frustrated with what could be an excellent site. I look forward to seeing Lukaku fit for the first game and hope we get a couple more players in as has been suggested by Roberto. Judging by the past transfer windows he's come through with those players as promised. Some players better than others but that is to be expected. I think we should all be more supportive as then and only then will we be helping our team to return to where it should be.
45 Posted 02/08/2015 at 10:39:27
47 Posted 02/08/2015 at 11:24:25
48 Posted 02/08/2015 at 11:31:30
The club is tied to the bank in far too many ways and obviously it is difficult to appeal to their good nature when asking for money they want to make a profit, and if that happens to harm our re-building plans, so be it. A borrower is rarely the master of their own destiny.
50 Posted 02/08/2015 at 11:40:05
The storm clouds are clearly gathering at Goodison, meanwhile the silence is deafening from the CEO, Chairman and anyone else associated with the club.
Hearing the Swansea success story in a relatively small town/city, shows how it's not just about money, but a valid business plan or just plain old ambition.
Sadly, were defunct in both departments.
51 Posted 02/08/2015 at 12:37:47
I really worry that a board who are now relatively awash with money after the tv deal still don't invest in the team unless we sell players. The money is haemorraging out into bank accounts other than EFC.
It's so blatant and transparent and still they are trusted to run the club, I truly despair at the morons who continue to make excuses for these shysters.
52 Posted 02/08/2015 at 13:54:53
If he breaks down against Watford we will be in the relegation zone come November.
53 Posted 02/08/2015 at 14:29:54
But this board has no spine.
54 Posted 02/08/2015 at 14:45:43
55 Posted 02/08/2015 at 15:00:53
If the likes of Kone and Naismith are not up to watfford then look at the manager and board for not having signed better over the last 2 years. Besides, Mirallas can play up top and Barkley reckons he's a striker
56 Posted 02/08/2015 at 15:57:19
Yes, we used to have a winger who knew how to get to the bye line and cross a ball on The Latch's head. That sort of thing is alien to Roberto.
Oh yeah, and Big Bob walked on water of course!
57 Posted 02/08/2015 at 16:00:34
10 years ago one Roberto Martinez was playing for Swansea and from 2007-2009 he managed them, taking them up to the Championship.
Which tells us what...?
We have a good manager in who just needs proactive executive drive and support?
He has reached the limit of his abilities at Championship level? As in the "Peter Principle" which tells us that anyone will only rise to a position in their work were they become incompetent, because they will advance no further having been promoted from a prior position at which they excelled.
58 Posted 02/08/2015 at 18:06:59
59 Posted 02/08/2015 at 18:18:32
60 Posted 02/08/2015 at 20:34:42
Some great posts, but anyone who says Kenwright isn't a visionary, couldn't have been at the game today. Give Duncan a testimonial, get him to thank me, at the end of his speech, and let the cheers rain down!
I had a thought on the way to the game today. Just like our team, I am not really ready for the football to begin just yet.
61 Posted 04/08/2015 at 15:31:21
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