No pressure on £29m Romelu Lukaku as he returns to Everton, says manager Roberto Martinez

The Belgium striker spent last season on loan at Goodison Park

Roberto Martinez says that Romelu Lukaku is not facing the usual pressures at Everton familiar to a record transfer signing despite his £29 million fee, because his loan season there has already established the Belgian striker at the club.

Lukaku joined Everton permanently this month, as the most expensive signing in the club’s history by some distance. He scored 15 league goals for the club last season and along with Gareth Barry, signed on a free transfer from Manchester City, his arrival allows Martinez to maintain the squad that finished fifth in the Premier League in May.

The Everton manager said: “At the end of the season it wasn’t clear we were going to get him. For me, at 21 Lukaku is one of the best players in world football. That is not my bias, the stats show it with the amount of goals he has scored at a young age.

“Everything he has as a striker is exactly what we wanted long term. So that is a real success. Sometimes you spend a big amount on a player and that puts massive, massive pressure on him because he has to settle in and fulfil expectations. This is almost the opposite. It allows Rom to be more confident and happier because we showed incredible faith.

The Bosnian midfielder Muhamed Besic is one of Everton’s few summer signings, here playing in a friendly against Celta Vigo The Bosnian midfielder Muhamed Besic is one of Everton’s few summer signings, here playing in a friendly against Celta Vigo (PA)
“Possibly every Evertonian wished to have him at Goodison on a permanent basis. You will never get another season where you have to pay a record fee for a player who has no pressure on him at all because it is what everyone wanted. Everyone knows what to expect. There are no false expectations. He is a very natural signing.”

Martinez has also signed the Bosnian midfielder Muhamed Besic from Ferencvaros for £4m and the winger Christian Atsu on loan from Chelsea. He denied that Everton had simply stood still rather than improved their squad as other teams around them have done.

“No, it is the opposite. In terms of spending a lot of money we sold £40m of  value in Marouane Fellaini, Victor Anichebe and Nikica Jelavic and we spent £13m on James McCarthy. Now we bought Lukaku so in terms  of money we have balanced very well.

“Yes, we have the same players but they are a year older, with more experience and have incredible talent. We bought Mo Besic and another loan signing from Chelsea. We have got another two young players who I feel are at the level to help the first team. So overall we have a bigger group and we have the continuity that we wanted.”

Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
News
Claudia Winkleman and co-host Tess Daly at the Strictly Come Dancing final
people
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
News
Elton John and David Furnish will marry on 21 December 2014
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick