Whether you rate Lukaku or not I’m sure your appreciation of him has gone up three fold the past few weeks! Since he injured his hamstring against QPR we have been treated to what life without Lukaku would be like. The answer is not a pretty one. Last week against Southampton and yesterday against Swansea we had to endure watching Arouna Kone leading the line in our famous number nine shirt. He’s nowhere near good enough to be wearing a blue shirt let alone wearing one that has been graced by Dixie, Bob Latchford or Big Dunc. People will argue he was involved in our goal yesterday, I’d give them their due he was. However it was a poor touch that led to McCarthy running on to the ball before crossing to Lennon. As a centre forward he has literally no attacking instinct and you just can’t see him scoring. Every time he does something good it’s followed up something equally as poor. If his first touch is good his lay off is short, if we break in numbers, when he turns out he always turns away from on rushing players. I’ll give him his due, his Everton career has been blighted by injuries but after playing the last four games it’s obvious he isn’t good enough.
I tweeted before kick off yesterday that I couldn’t see where the goals were going to come from. Apart from the two bits of football we played just before half time, one being the goal and the other being an intricate move finishing with Pienaar having a shot well saved, we looked so lacklustre in the final third. The majority of our efforts ended up being ‘pee rollers’ from outside of the box. As a front man Kone gives us no outlet both from an attacking and defensive point of view. When we need a ball to release the pressure he doesn’t hold it up, he’s poor in the air and unless players are running beyond him we’re not going to stretch teams.
Kone isn’t totally to blame as he doesn’t pick the team, but he does fall under the category of a ‘Martinez favourite’. I’m so fed up with his incessant need to leave his favourites on the pitch regardless of how they are playing. I read Martinez blamed our draw yesterday on trying to go for a second goal instead of holding on to what we had. If we’d had a centre forward of any quality yesterday we would’ve finished Swansea off at the start of the second half. Unfortunately when Swansea did start to turn the screw mid-way through the second half Martinez dallied with his subs and left Kone on. At the time we needed an outlet and someone to take the pressure off the midfield and back four. The rest as they say is history but there is no doubt if we’d had Naismith on earlier we’d have had a better chance of holding on to the lead.
For the time being our options are severely limited with only Naismith ‘according’ to Martinez as our only other recognised senior forward at the club. With six games remaining I’d bring some of the Under 21 players into the match day squad. Surely they would offer more enthusiasm and ability than Kone is currently displaying. Martinez promised that Kone would show us what we’ve missed now he’s fit. It’s clear to see what we are missing now and that’s Lukaku!