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Lukaku making big improvements under Koeman

Striker could be in for a big year

Everton v Middlesbrough - Premier League
Romelu Lukaku of Everton celebrates
Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Romelu Lukaku has missed some time this year with injuries, but in the few games that he has featured, he’s been pretty much unplayable for defences.

(Click here for a larger view of the stats)

Manager Ronald Koeman, while impressed with Lukaku’s progress, feels he still has some way to go.

Compared to his three previous years at Everton (including his first on loan from Chelsea), the striker appears to be improving in just about every single category measured by Opta Stats and analyzed by Oulala - pass completion, chances created, shots, shot accuracy, successful take-ons, take-on success rate, minutes per assist, minutes per goal, and finally, minutes per goal/assist.

Sunderland v Everton - Premier League
Romelu Lukaku
Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Lukaku is only 23 and will only continue to get better from here, but it does appear that he is getting better at some of the simple things that have made him frustrating to watch - his first touch, and his work rate off the ball.

His agent Mino Raiola recently said to the press that the player was in talks with the club with a view to a new contract. This is a welcome change in tone to his regular outbursts wherein he talks about moving his player to one of Europe’s top clubs.

Everton will have a hard time keeping a hold of Lukaku if they don’t get this new deal sorted out sooner than later. Even with an improved contract though, it is very likely that the agent, the player’s father and the rest of his coterie will be clamoring for a transfer should the Toffees fail to make it into European football next season.