ROMELU LUKAKU showed what Chelsea lacked with a dominating performance against Brighton.
The Belgian, 28, started his first game since a draw with Zenit St Petersburg earlier this month and opened the scoring in the 28th minute.
Lukaku displayed great desire and foresight, striking space in the post from the corner to head Chelsea in front of goal.
But in the first five minutes, the striker showed why the Blues spent £97.5 million on him in the summer.
Antonio Rudiger sent a hopeful ball forward and Lukaku, grappling with Dan Burn at 6ft 6in, flashed the ball before sprinting past the Brighton defender to keep possession.
It set a goal for Mason Mount and Lukaku continued in that vein throughout the night.
He is the target whenever Chelsea are in trouble and need the ball – it happens often.
And more importantly, he answered Jorginho’s call for more goals with Speak Italian before the game: “I hope our strikers can score, score, score and be the top scorer and not me, to be honest.”
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Lukaku repeatedly holds the ball or passes the ball to Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi with a chest touch or smart warm-up.
Had that pair produced a better end product in the final third then Chelsea would have been out of the way by that point. Danny Welbeck headed the equalizer for Brighton at the last minute.
But they shouldn’t be blamed for Chelsea dropping points again at home, after draws against Everton, Manchester United and Burnley – final minutes beat Leeds is their only win in five home games.
Instead, Tuchel should look at his midfield.
Jorginho is quiet and Mateo Kovacic is unusually taciturn. Neither were able to help the Blues follow the team instead of relying on Lukaku to hold the ball before bringing the others in.
And the central defenders are also at fault when they put pressure on Brighton in defence.
Indeed it was, but with the arrival of N’Golo Kante in the 67th minute, the Seagulls could have scored the equalizer sooner.
Kante pushed Chelsea higher and his introduction led to more chances – Lukaku dribbled well in the box but his shot was quickly knocked out by Burn.
In contrast, Chelsea could not close Marc Cucurella and his perfect pass was returned by Welbeck. leaving the Blues eight points ahead of the top team Manchester City.
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https://www.the-sun.com/sport/4361233/chelsea-verdict-lukaku-tuchel-brighton/ Romelu Lukaku proves he’s world class but the Tuchel title challengers have a lot of work to do