It was a move seven years in the making and 10 years since he last wore the shirt, but Chelsea proudly declared on their website earlier this month that Romelu Lukaku had “come home. Romelu Lukaku has his second debut against Arsenal on Sunday. Also, it turned into a dream afternoon as Lukaku opened the scoring. Also, he has put in an “unplayable” performance which the player himself described as “dominant”.
His strike was his first goal for the club. Although he has failed to hit the net in his three years. Also, in the previous 15 appearances at Stamford Bridge between 2011 and 2014. Then he was a peripheral figure and never given a Premier League start.
European champions, Chelsea, earned a 2-0 victory over their well-beaten London rivals. Also, the early signs are Thomas Tuchel’s side will take some stopping this season with Lukaku on board.
‘What a start for Lukaku’
Belgium international Lukaku returned to “the club he supported as a kid”. He has returned also for a second spell after moves to Everton, Manchester United, and most recently Inter Milan, to whom the Blues paid a handsome £97.5m.
That fee made Lukaku, 28, the Premier League’s second most expensive player of all time. He is just after Manchester City’s £100m Jack Grealish.
About the match against Arsenal:
Against Arsenal he did not disappoint, showing the kind of form that saw him rebuild his reputation in Italy. He has scored 64 goals in 95 appearances and helping Inter Milan to a first title since 2010 – after a difficult time at Manchester United.
Lukaku began perfectly, tapping in after just 14 minutes with his third touch of the game. After that, he has celebrated by putting his finger to his lips. Only a superb save from Bernd Leno denied him a second. Also, he has touched Lukaku’s diving header onto the bar.
Overall, he completed 19 of his 20 passes against the Gunners and contested 15 duels, more than any other player.
“What a start for Lukaku,” boss Tuchel told BBC Radio 5 Live. “In the beginning, he struggled to touch the ball a little bit. Then he was very well integrated.
“He proved his value for the squad already. He linked well with Mason Mount and Kai Havertz upfront and gave something to the game that we did not have already.”
Asked about his performance, Lukaku told Sky Sports: “Dominant, I would say. I try to improve every time andalso have a long way to go but today was good to win.
“I worked hard throughout the week. We knew it was a big game and we did well. As an individual, I want to help the team and I want to continue doing that.”
‘His touch was immaculate’
Last season, Timo Werner scored just six times in the top flight, despite having an expected goals (xG) rate of 11.5, whereas Lukaku netted 24 goals from an xG of 23.8.
As a team, Chelsea scored 58 goals in the league with a conversion rate of 10.4%, down on Inter Milan’s rate of 16.1% as they netted 89 goals in winning the title.