By the time you read this Romelu Lukaku may have made his big-money move to Manchester United. And by big, we mean huge. The reported fee is £75 million. It’s eye-wateringly gigantic.
Whether it will prove to be money well spent we will find out in the next season of the Premier League. Until then it will be debated whether Lukaku is actually worth that amount of cash.
If you were being harsh Lukaku might be described as an old-fashioned centre-forward. One who has pace, power and an ability to break the back of the net with his strikes. It is also arguable that he has far from a deadly finisher. Clinical he is not. Subtle? Never. He’s a battering ram.
His goal return is still good, though at 0.47 goals per game in his career. Does that wow you? Well, that’s what £75m gets you these days.
There is no surprise that he has ended up at United. The deal provides a fascinating insight into how transfer business actually works. Lukaku has the same agent as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. All three signed for United last summer.
And there was us thinking that clubs tried to get the best players available rather than the players who work with their best agent.
What £75m doesn’t get you, by the way, is the favourite for the Golden Boot. Lukaku is second favourite behind Harry Kane at +500 with Paddy Power. Kane is +300 with Bet365. For the record, Kane averages 0.54 goals per game over his career and has won the title the last two years.
Lukaku was four goals behind Kane last season and it would be reasonable to expect that a move to a more incisive and dangerous United team should see him bolster his tally. It is also possible that in a more incisive and dangerous team, however, that the goals are shared around more. Lukaku is no longer a big fish in a small pond.
In reality, these two don’t have much to beat. Alexis Sanchez, who was third, has had his problems at Arsenal, fourth-placed Sergio Aguero is always seemingly having to prove himself to Pep Guardiola while next on the list was Diego Costa, who is set to be bombed out by Chelsea.
Something else £75m doesn’t get you is the favourite for the player of the year. Lukaku is seventh on the betting list at +2000 with 888Sport. Eden Hazard is +900 with Unibet and Kane is next best at +1000 with paddyPower.