Romelu Lukaku is ‘struggling’ at Chelsea because he doesn’t fit in with the way Thomas Tuchel wants to play football.
That’s according to former Italy striker Antonio Cassano, who believes the Belgian striker is ill-fitted to Tuchel’s idea of the game.
Lukaku arrived back at Chelsea in a £103.5m deal from Inter Milan in the summer, securing the Blues the elite level striker many believed they desperately needed.
He started life at Stamford Bridge in fine form, with a dominant display and goal against Arsenal on his debut, a potential sign of things to come.
He’s struggled in the Premier League and Champions League over the last few weeks, though, failing to score in any of their last four league games or the defeat to Juventus in Europe.
In all of those games, he’s cut something of a frustrated figure, with a glaring miss against Southampton, which was later ruled offside anyway, reminiscent of the kind of form he showed at his failed spell with Manchester United.
With four goals in ten games to his name so far, nobody is panicking just yet, but Cassano is not convinced by what he has seen.
“Lukaku is struggling, he clings to the defender, and it’s his teammates who go looking for him,” he said on Twitch, relayed by FC Inter 1908.
“Tuchel doesn’t have to learn from Conte how to make Lukaku play; a coach shouldn’t dare to say things like that to someone who has won what he has won.
“Tuchel, though, could take all kinds of strikers, but Lukaku has nothing to do with his idea of the game; at PSG, at Dortmund, he had different strikers.
“When you play with Conte 50 metres from the goal, it’s easy, and then playing in Italy is another thing; in England, you have animals defending; in England, he struggles because Lukaku doesn’t have that kind of characteristics.
“Chelsea are distorting themselves to get Lukaku into the game, it’s Lukaku who has to follow Chelsea’s idea, but he doesn’t have the characteristics Tuchel wants.”