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Ronald Koeman (left) thinks Romelu Lukaku is destined for greatness.
Ronald Koeman (left) thinks Romelu Lukaku is destined for greatness.
Image: EMPICS Sport

Ronald Koeman says Lukaku must leave Everton to fulfil his potential

The 23-year-old Belgian striker would be a good fit at Barcelona, the Toffees boss says.
Nov 9th 2016, 4:56 PM 9,604 15

IN A STRANGE move, Everton boss Ronald Koeman has suggested that star striker Romelu Lukaku must leave the club to reach his potential.

The Belgian striker has scored 35 goals in 82 games for the Toffees and is widely adored by Everton fans, who were likely stunned by the Dutch manager’s remarks.

While clubs have regularly expressed interest in prying the 23-year-old away from Goodison Park, it has been a source of great pride to Everton fans that Lukaku has remained at the club.

However, Koeman bizarrely changed tack at a press conference this afternoon, admitting he wants the player to stay but accepting Lukaku is destined for bigger and better things.

“Everton should normally not be the end for him,” Koeman, who has been in a war of words with the Ireland management team of late, said.

“Romelu will not have made the most of his career if he plays for Everton for the remainder of his career.

“He has the potential to play for a bigger club than Everton.”

Koeman believes Lukaku, who has been linked with a move to Manchester United and a return to Chelsea, would be a success at his former club Barcelona and he feels he has the ability to match the achievements of Dutch legend Patrick Kluivert.

“I think his finishing is very good,” Koeman added.

“He keeps his calm and is one of the best I have ever seen — both as a player and as a coach — when it comes to making that final decision in front of goal.

“His attacking movement is great. I think he can still contribute more defensively.

“I think he can emulate Patrick Kluivert, who also rose to prominence at a young age and enjoyed a fantastic career.

“He eventually played for Barcelona and I can see Lukaku doing the same.”

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