Romelu Lukaku: Everton Made Statement Keeping John Stones
Romelu Lukaku believes Everton made a statement by keeping John Stones at the club over the summer.
Stones, 21, was the subject of several summer transfer bids from Chelsea but ultimately stayed at Goodison Park. He has gone on to cement his reputation as one of the best young players in the Premier League with a number of impressive performances at the heart of Everton’s defence.
And his team-mate Lukaku, speaking to Sky Sports News HQ ahead of Everton’s trip to West Bromwich Albion on Monday Night Football, praised the club for holding firm.
“It’s a statement for the club, for me,” Lukaku said. “It’s nice to see that John showed his character and the club did their job to keep the player.
“But it’s up to us to help John improve to reach the top level, as he is doing at the moment. I think the club made a statement by keeping him here at the club.”
The likes of Stones and Ross Barkley have played key roles at the club so far this season, and Roberto Martinez has not been shy to play Everton’s next generation in the Premier League.
“Every time we have a guy from the under-21s with us, he has adapted very well, and it’s all credit to the academy,” Lukaku continued
“They are delivering, and we as players try to make sure they work hard like we do. Last weekend, when Tyias Browning and Brendan Galloway got the chance, they did well.
“They have great examples of Ross and John coming through.”
Lukaku moved to London as a teenager in 2011, and the Belgium international can see similarities between his situation and Anthony Martial’s arrival at Manchester United from Monaco.
“Yes, of course [there’s similarities]. But at the end of the day, I always look at myself,” Lukaku said.
“It’s good for him what is happening to him at the moment, but I always look to myself to improve. Wherever I’m at, I try to win games, that’s the most important thing for me – and to score goals.
“It depends where you arrive to and the moment [you arrive]. For me, I was 18 years old, I had just finished school, I had never lived on my own and then from one day to another I was in London all by myself, at a fantastic club where I learned a lot of stuff.
“It was a nice experience, that experience made me a stronger player and improved my mental strength as well. Now I’m 22 and I can always look back at that nice period.”