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United’s reliance on Romelu Lukaku revealed

José Mourinho confirmed the Belgian won’t get a rest over the international break.

Manchester United v Crystal Palace - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Romelu Lukaku was on the scoresheet again as Manchester United saw off Crystal Palace on Saturday, with the Belgian continuing his brilliant start to life at Old Trafford. Since his big money move from Everton, Lukaku has found the net seven times in the Premier League, and added four more in Europe. United couldn’t have hoped for much more.

However, United’s reliance on the Belgian is worrying — at least with Zlatan Ibrahimović on the sidelines for the foreseeable future. “Look without Zlatan we cannot rotate the striker, especially because Marcus Rashford is playing also in other positions,” José Mourinho is quoted as saying in an article in the Manchester Evening News.

The United boss also confirmed that Lukaku isn’t going to receive any respite over the international break. When asked whether he’d requested Belgium boss Roberto Martínez to omit him from his squad, Mourinho replied: “Belgium is Roberto’s responsibility and it’s his decision to play him or not to play him. I cannot, professionally speaking, say do this or do that. It’s Roberto’s responsibility.”

Gulp. Belgium are in action against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Cyprus in World Cup qualifiers over the next 10 days. Let’s hope Lukaku manages to make it through unscathed.