Darren Bent backs Romelu Lukaku to outscore Cristiano Ronaldo
Darren Bent has backed Romelu Lukaku to score more goals than Cristiano Ronaldo in the Premier League this season.
Lukaku rejoined Chelsea from Inter Milan for a club-record fee of £97.5 million this summer.
It was also an emotional homecoming for Cristiano Ronaldo, who returned to Manchester United after 12 years.
Ronaldo and Lukaku finished top of the scoring charts in Italy’s Serie A last season.
They will be keen to revive their rivalry in England.
Bent feels that Lukaku will get more game time and score more than Ronaldo this season.
He told talkSPORT: “I look at Chelsea and the goals that they get – a lot of those are going to come through Lukaku.
“But with United and Ronaldo, Mason Greenwood is going to chip in with some.
“So will Bruno Fernandes and (Marcus) Rashford when he comes back.
“Ronaldo might not play as much, whereas Lukaku will always start.
“Listen, I think Ronaldo will get goals, I have no doubt about that, but I think Lukaku… well, he’s 1-0 up already.”
Chelsea have an abundance of creative attacking players in their squad.
However, their only genuine goalscorer is Lukaku.
The Belgian was brought in with the sole purpose of converting the plethora of chances created by the team.
Lukaku is in his prime and will be a guaranteed starter as a number nine for the Blues.
By contrast, Ronaldo is a 36-year-old heading towards the end of his career.
The Portuguese star is one of the iconic greats in the game and can still decide a match single-handedly.
However, expecting Ronaldo to play regularly could be asking too much of him.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may use the five-time Ballon d’Or winner more sparingly and rest him against weaker opposition.
Ronaldo may also be deployed on the left wing if Solskjaer starts Edinson Cavani or Greenwood up front.
These factors may well prevent Ronaldo from outscoring Lukaku in the Premier League this season.