Manchester United endured a rather bizarre season last time out, didn’t they? The emotions were tipped towards either jubilation or despair, with seemingly nothing in between.
While it remains to be seen how Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will fair next season, we can now discuss the current crop of players and both the likely incomings and outgoings. With that in mind, one player who is certainly having his name thrown around is Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku.
The rumours have begun to spiral, with Gazzetta Dello Sport (via Daily Mail) now reporting that the forward has agreed personal terms with Inter Milan ahead of a proposed move. This comes only a matter of days after The Sun reported Lukaku had been told he was to be allowed to leave.
There certainly appears to be traction to this one, but perhaps we should have a closer look as to why. The Belgian signed for United in 2017 in an initial £75m deal, and while he looked to have instantly taken to life in Manchester, the forward has distinctly dropped off since.
Lukaku scored just 12 goals in 32 league games this season. Four less than his total of 16 last season, and less than half of his 25 scored during his last season at Goodison Park. His stats were certainly not aided by the fact he made 10 of his 32 appearances off the bench. Yet, there’s a reason he’s not starting.
The Belgian scored twice in United’s incredible 3-1 win away at PSG, but that was at the start of March. Amazingly, the forward actually failed to score a club goal for the rest of the season and those stats are simply not good enough.
Indeed, it’s not as if Marcus Rashford’s stats are much better, scoring 10 goals in 33 league games. Still, the England star did provide six assists, whereas Lukaku failed to register one. Rashford also (in the Premier League) had a higher pass completion rate, shots and dribbles per game, while also creating more key chances per game (stats via WhoScored).
The England international provided far more to the team than his Belgian counterpart, doing so while five years his junior. According to The Sun, Lukaku earns £225,000-a-week, which are pretty staggering figures, considering he has reportedly (per the Telegraph) fallen out of favour.
It seems Solskjaer favours Rashford, something seemingly unlikely to change over the summer. While Lukaku has not been a failure at United, it is perhaps time to move on as both parties look ahead to what is hopefully a brighter future.
United fans, is this the end for Lukaku? How will his time be looked upon once he does leave? Join the discussion by commenting below…