Want a fun stat to cheer you up after a loss?

CHESTER, PA - JULY 25: John Terry #26 of Chelsea scores a goal against the MLS All-Stars in the first half during the 2012 AT&T MLS All-Star Game at PPL Park on July 25, 2012 in Chester, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

I had tweetdeck open after the game and happened to come across 1 or 2 tweets that happened to make me laugh a little. Several fans from a club up in the north of England are always looking to laugh at the price other clubs payed for strikers and write them off as a waste (I wonder why?). Tonight's target was Romelu Lukaku, the 19 year old who has had himself a pretty solid pre-season to date.

The comment "Still not sure how Chelsea fans can defend Romelu Lukaku's price tag..." really had my scratching my head. With that in mind, I thought I'd take about 3 minutes of my life, look up some numbers, and give it a try. I looked up 12 world class goalscorers, and determined how many goals they had scored at the professional level in whatever leagues they had happened to play in through the same age as Lukaku is today. After the jump you can find the results.

Pretty good list, no? How do you think Lukaku would compare? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller? Well, here you go:

  • Romelu Lukaku - 41

Did you realize he was that prolific in Belgium? He was. Eight of those goals came in European competition as well, so he's not padding his numbers against slouches. Oh yeah, and did I forget to mention that he'd rival Cristiano Ronaldo as the most intimidating overall athlete on that list? He is, as his combination of size, strength, and speed is nearly impossible to find. If you dropped Romelu Lukaku into the NFL draft, he'd leave the scouting combine as one of the hottest prospects out there without ever touching a ball.

Look, many of these guys I've highlighted would have had better numbers against lesser competition. Several of these guys were facing lesser competition than Lukaku and still put up lesser numbers. In the end, it probably doesn't mean a whole lot. What it should do is serve as a reminder that scoring goals is a hard thing to do, and 99% of the young players out there struggle with it. Have some patience with Romelu as he's really, really young still. Not beating out Didier Drogba, Fernando Torres, Nicolas Anelka, Daniel Sturridge, and Salomon Kalou at the age of 18 is forgivable.

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