3. PSG are set to test Everton’s resolve with January move for Romelu Lukakuhttps://t.co/gj7fIEjo6U
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) November 7, 2016
Essentially, PSG want Lukaku. The Parisians have apparently been wowed by his goal-getting prowess over the course of the past few seasons, making a 2017 move for his services appealing to the oil-rich folk that have bankrolled the French side’s rise to become Ligue 1’s dominant force. Toffees boss Ronald Koeman has insisted relatively recently that his Belgian marksman is not for sale, but football managers often go back on their word, so the cross-Channel giants are hopeful of luring him to the continent.
It’s hard to see Lukaku achieving much more than he has already at Everton. The striker has netted 50 league goals since his arrival, initially on loan, at Goodison Park, but the highest summit the club have reached in that period is the Europa League knockout stages. Simply put, the 23-year-old is bashing his head on a ceiling on Merseyside, and although they won’t want to admit it, the club are surely aware of this, too.
Granted, Ligue 1 is not the most prestigious of divisions – it’s often talked of as the weakest of the ‘big five’ in Europe – but in swapping Everton for PSG, Lukaku would be guaranteeing himself title challenges and regular appearances in the latter stages of the Champions League. On top of this, the Middle Eastern-backed side will be able to throw a huge salary his way, and even though we’re sure Mr. Lukaku is not short of euros in his bank account, any person in any walk of life will consider a pay-rise if offered.
With Lukaku having battered defences in the Premier League, it’s hard to see him having much trouble in France. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was scoring hatfuls well into his 30s, while even Mario Balotelli has managed to look good this season despite a couple years off the grid at Liverpool and AC Milan. The major issue that may face him is dislodging Edinson Cavani as the Parisians’ main striker, with the Uruguayan finally having made himself their star man after Ibra’s exit. But, with the South American now almost 30, Lukaku appears to be a long-term option for PSG.
It’s hard to see a scenario in which Everton keep Lukaku for much longer. As mentioned before, the Toffees are seemingly at a crossroads, with only major investment enough to lure the sort of players needed to challenge for the top four. But, with at least six teams in the division better and richer than them, outside of a miraculous, Leicester City-esque run, Champions League football on the blue half of Merseyside looks like a pipe-dream. PSG have the cash to pay anywhere north of £50m for Lukaku, which may prove too tempting should the player himself indicate that it’s time to move on.