Belfast Telegraph

Martinez: Lukaku looks a bargain

Boss Roberto Martinez branded Romelu Lukaku a £28million bargain after he fired Everton to a 2-0 win at West Brom.

The Toffees' record buy scored inside two minutes at The Hawthorns for his first goal since making his loan move from Chelsea permanent.

He curled in from the edge of the box after Jonas Olsson's poor clearance before Kevin Mirallas added a second thanks to Ben Foster's mistake.

It sealed a comfortable win for Everton and Martinez believes Lukaku, who scored 16 goals on loan at Goodison Park last season, can be a steal.

"He is only a young man and I'm sure money can be spent in many ways but I didn't mind the sum because he was money well spent," he said.

"When you bring a player into the club it's always a gamble but in this case it wasn't at all because we had the advantage of working with Rom over last season.

"For us it was very important to keep him. I felt he developed a homely feeling, his relationship with the fans is quite unique and he is everything you expect in a striker. He is young, wants to win, he works extremely hard and he has everything."

It was Everton's first win of the season and Martinez felt it was deserved, although he offered support to opposite number Alan Irvine.

He said: "We scored at the right times and created chances. West Brom were fantastic though and they are in transition and trying to bed some players in. They play with a lot of energy but I felt we never looked like conceding until the last minute."

Irvine has been unable to play most of his summer signings after they arrived late in pre-season, with Joleon Lescott still out after a knee injury.

He gave debuts to substitutes Sebastian Blanco and Georgios Samaras but the Baggies were jeered off after their third blank in a row.

And Irvine knows, despite being a work in progress, they need results.

He said: "It needs to be as quick as possible, we are not in that pre-season period we would like to have been in when we were trying to build the team. We're in the season and it's important to get good results.

"What I would say is that the players are working extremely hard to get there. We are seeing some good things but some mistakes are very costly for us.

"Jonas and Ben are experienced Premier League players and don't usually make those mistakes.

"These lads are generally very consistent and they are devastated about the goals. Mistakes happen and we have to accept that and move on."


From Belfast Telegraph