May 1, 2017
There’s a body of opinion among some Everton supporters that Lukaku doesn’t run enough, remains uninterested in games for long periods of times, can’t control the ball etc etc etc.
For the avoidance of doubt I’m not one of those supporters, and I want to demonstrate why….
Often pictures, graphics, numbers or tables can demonstrate a point much more so than words, but first let me explain the logic.
Lukaku is likely to finish the highest goal scorer in the Premier League this season, so I thought it useful to compare him to the other highest scorers since the Millenium.
So I’ve gathered some statistics together including age, team, number of goals scored, number of points won by the highest scorer’s team and critically Premier League position of that team.
|Season||Player||Age||Team||Goals scored||Team position||Points|
The striking point for me is that since 2000/1 the highest Premier League scorer has played for the Champions 7 times and 2nd/3rd teams a further 8 times. None of the Premier League’s top scorers have finished outside the top 4 other than Floyd Hasselbaink way back in 2000/1.
He’s also younger than all the previous top goal scorers other than Harry Kane last year.
His goals are almost exclusively from open play, he’s scored one direct free kick versus Crystal Palace earlier in the season at Goodison.
My personal opinion is that a striker’s first responsibility is to score goals. However I also think Lukaku’s overall game has improved immensely this season, and will improve further over time.
The main point though is he does his primary job, and in my opinion there’s not a better goal scorer in the Premiership at present.
So the scale of Lukaku’s achievement should he finish top scorer is immense. He’s playing for the team that will almost certainly finish 7th, will have gained a point number which for the top scorer has only been lower once since 2000.
The issue for me with Lukaku at Everton is not what he does for the team, it’s what else the team both in terms of tactics and personnel should be doing for him.
Lukaku is doing what great goalscorers do, he scores goals for fun, currently for the poorest team in over 15 years to host the league’s top goalscorer.
The message to the board, and to the doubting fans is we need to build around him next season, and in doing so he’ll score more again.