Romelu Lukaku’s involvement in Belgium’s winner against Japan might seem minimal to a casual fan watching the game at home on a television. But it was his movement and his intelligence which created the space for his teammates to create and score the goal. Initially when De Bruyne had the ball, Lukaku moved away from Thomas Meunier who was making run on the right. His movement dragged away the Japan defender leaving Meunier in acres of space. It was an easy for De Bruyne to find Meunier with no opposition defenders blocking the path. As soon as Meunier has the ball, Lukaku immediately moves to the right changing direction so that the other Belgium player who is coming from the left is free. And to top it all off, Lukaku dummies to throw off the Japanese defence for one last time and Nacer Chadli has an easy finish to complete.
The record books won’t have Romelu Lukaku’s name for his contribution to this goal but if not for the Manchester United man’s intelligence and game awareness, Belgium surely wouldn’t have scored the goal. To follow the alerts, news and records from the FIFA World Cup 2018, do check out 2018 world cup apps.
But I think Rom is a player we know well because as a young man we saw his outstanding talent. His outstanding talent is the goalscoring ability that he has. When you see him at the age of 19 coming into the Premier League and making the impact he had with West Brom and seeing that slowly he was adapting to playing 90 minutes.
“He comes to Everton and you can see that mindset of a winner. Elite brain of wanting to become the best in his position. You see an evolution on the footballer.
“But it was significant to see someone that from the outside many people could say, well he would accept if you see a selfish action of Romelu Lukaku on the pitch because you are in front of goal and maybe you are hoping to score a goal.
“I think his decision of assisting that ball to someone who is in a better position speaks volumes of his maturity and his understanding of why we are here – to be a team, to help each other, to try to win games.”
Eden Hazard on Romelu Lukaku:
“What’s great about having Romelu is that he doesn’t need many chances to score.
“Maybe a few years ago, he needed more. The reason why he’s in the category of the very best strikers is that when he gets three chances in a game, he scores two.
“In terms of movement, he’s better than he was a few years ago. In terms of defending, he does more.”
Watch Lukaku’s run. Drags the defender inside to create space for Meunier and then dummies it brilliantly for Chadli. Brilliant work. pic.twitter.com/RKseQLdX7q
— Jake. (@YedIin) July 2, 2018