English Premiership

'Everton must not only rely on Lukaku'

2016-10-21 22:15
Romelu Lukaku (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Manager Ronald Koeman has urged Everton to find a way of avoiding over reliance on striker Romelu Lukaku in front of goal, but praised the club's defensive record this season.

Belgium international Lukaku, who struck 18 Premier League goals last season, has continued his impressive form under Koeman, netting six of Everton's 12 league goals.

Koeman's side, who are sixth in the standings and have conceded just six goals after the opening eight league games, boast the second best defensive record in the top flight after leaders Manchester City.

"Of course, you'd like many players to score more goals. The players around Lukaku need to show more productivity. There is no pressure on Lukaku. It's one of his best qualities," the Dutchman told a news conference on Thursday.

"On the other hand we haven't conceded more than one every game but we need to create more and we need to score more goals."

The 53-year-old Koeman added that midfielder Ross Barkley's omission from last weekend's clash with City could be a wake-up call for him.

However, Koeman, who last month told Barkley to improve "in all areas", said the 22-year-old did not play at the Etihad Stadium for tactical reasons.

"They are quality players. He is young but he is not so young because he has been playing four years in the first team. It means you are not a talent anymore and need to show what you can do," he said.

"I changed him and I did not start with him but it can be different this weekend. If I am not totally happy or it is tactical then he does not start. Maybe last weekend was a wake-up call for him."

Koeman confirmed that left back Leighton Baines will miss Saturday's trip to Burnley after suffering a setback with his hamstring injury, while winger Aaron Lennon is available for selection after missing out against City.

Burnley manager Sean Dyche said injured midfielder Steven Defour will miss Saturday's game.

The 28-year-old, who has racked up three assists and scored once in seven league games this season, sustained a hamstring injury in 14th-place Burnley's defeat by Southampton on Sunday.

"Steven has got a pretty straight-forward hamstring injury. It's straight-forward as regards the scan. When players come off that quickly you are also a bit wary that it could be worse than it is," Dyche said.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Saturday, 20 January 2018
Brighton & Hove Albion v Chelsea, The American Express Community Stadium 14:30
Stoke City v Huddersfield Town, Bet365 Stadium 17:00
Arsenal v Crystal Palace, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Everton v West Bromwich Albion, Goodison Park 17:00
Leicester City v Watford, King Power Stadium 17:00
West Ham United v AFC Bournemouth, London Stadium 17:00
Burnley v Manchester United, Turf Moor 17:00
Manchester City v Newcastle United, Etihad Stadium 19:30
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Southampton v Tottenham Hotspur, St. Mary's Stadium 18:00
Monday, 22 January 2018
Swansea City v Liverpool, Liberty Stadium 22:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2017/18 season?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.