Welcome to World Class: Romelu Lukaku
For some players, you can tell from a young age that they are destined for the top.
When a 16-year-old mountain by the name of Romelu Lukaku finished top scorer in the Belgian Pro League in the 2009/10 season, it was quickly decided that this kid was going to get back into football one day, and for one while everything. everyone agreed.
A move to Chelsea, and subsequent loans to West Brom and Everton, only increased his profile, and he continued to shine after sealing a permanent move to the Toffees in 2014. Records began to crumble and the hype only increased.
Then the move to Manchester United happened.
Its price tag of more than £ 75million was quite justifiable at the time. Chelsea were furious that they missed the opportunity to pay him off, and United were laughing. They had found their attacker for the next decade. The trophies were going to pour in.
While silverware was scarce, goals were fairly easy to achieve. Lukaku has scored 42 in 96 appearances for United, but for every goal thousands of memes have laughed at the Belgian.
He might have been a good goalscorer, but the vibe coming out of Old Trafford was that Lukaku was lazy, overweight, and technically underweight, and we don’t even need to mention how ridiculed his first touch was. . Instead of a superstar, he was usually compared to a donkey.
United fans would have made you believe Lukaku was a waste of money, so much so that there were celebrations when Inter were ‘duped’ into signing him for around £ 74million in 2019. The Italian side were thanked for sucking up all of United’s unwanted talent. .
For an average player, that abuse would be enough to derail him. His own fans ridiculed him daily, attacking both his talent and his appearance. This should eat at you, but not Lukaku.
Now far from the most intense spotlight in football, Lukaku took the opportunity to put his head down and rebuild his reputation, and barely a year later he has more than done that.
The catalyst for his rebirth was the discovery that Lukaku had in fact struggled with an undiagnosed problem with his digestive system. Neither Lukaku nor United understood this, which contributed to his decline in fitness.
He lost half a stone in just 12 days of finding and dealing with this problem, and that’s it. Lukaku was happy, healthy, confident and more determined than ever, and the rest of Italy knew the game was ending very quickly.
The Belgian scored 34 goals in all competitions in his debut season with Inter, a personal best for Lukaku and equal to the record set by Brazilian legend Ronaldo in his first year with I Nerazzurri in 1997/98. Estimated business indeed.
“In the past five months, yes. I don’t want to rank this group from one to five, but I’m part of it right now. ”
– Lukaku among the 5 best forwards in the world
He also managed to bring Inter back into the Serie A title photo. Inter were fourth and 21 points behind Juventus in 2018/19, but in Lukaku’s first year he was second, just one point less to go down in history.
Most importantly, he has banished demons from his past with United. His donkey nickname is a thing of the past, and he’s finally scoring an insane number of goals for one of the best clubs in Europe – as it’s always been meant to be.
Inter fans are showing him the love Lukaku has always deserved, but it wasn’t just the fans who recognized his greatness. Lukaku has received high praise from a number of his peers and gaming legends, including Inter hero Christian Vieri.
“In my opinion, Lukaku is the best striker in the world,” Vieri said (via Calciomercato). “Better than [Harry] Kane, [Robert] Lewandowski and [Luis] Suarez.
“He is not markable. He has too much physical strength and speed compared to others; it is a beast.
“To take off [Lionel] Messi and [Cristiano] Ronaldo, Lukaku is the best in the world to score goals. I put [Erling] Haaland in second place, but the Belgian is stronger. The others that you can mark, Lukaku, you cannot.
If there is one blow to Lukaku’s career so far, it is that he has yet to build the kind of trophy cabinet one would expect from a player of his caliber.
Despite the most impressive goal numbers you’ve ever found, the only reward for Lukaku’s side is the Belgian Pro League title he won at the age of 16. He has yet to lead a team to glory at the highest level.
However, you only need to look at the statistics to see how unfair this is. He’s a man who finished top scorer in the Europa League, a man who won a place in the Premier League’s Team of the Year and the man who sits at the top of the all-time rankings in Belgium. His pedigree is clear to see.
When you rack up the kind of numbers that Lukaku does, you easily find your way into the world-class medium.
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