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08th Aug 2019

Neville: Lukaku’s lack of professionalism is contagious

Jack O'Toole

Former Manchester United captain Gary Neville has said that Romelu Lukaku’s lack of professionalism at the club was contagious.

The Belgian international is on the verge of joining Inter Milan just two years after joining United for £75 million from Everton.

Lukaku scored 42 goals in 96 games for the Manchester club and now looks set to end his eight year stay in the Premier League to join the Serie A.

The 26-year-old scored 15 goals last season, in comparison to 27 goals in all competitions in his first campaign at Old Trafford, and Neville feels that he never controlled his weight while he was in Manchester.

It’s not the first time Neville has taken aim at Lukaku’s shape with the former England defender lambasting him for his fitness in April.

“You watch him for 25 minutes, he looks like a world-beater but you see him make one run and he looks knackered,” he said on Sky Sports.

“Football players should know their bodies inside out, you know when you can eat, when you should relax, the portion sizes.

“I am not sure how he hasn’t corrected this problem. It is not a reflection on the sports science department at the club, something isn’t right.”

Lukaku admitted he put on too much weight last season in an interview with Men’s Health but stresses that his extra weight stemmed from playing in a different style with Belgium at the FIFA World Cup.

“In the Premier League, I cannot play with the same amount of muscle as international football,” he said.

“That was something that when I came back I knew straight away: ‘Nah, I cannot play in this style like this.’ I had to lose muscle basically. So you just stay out of the gym, drink a lot of water, and a lot of veg and fish and it helps.”