Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku has revealed the advantage of starting early in the Premier League. He said it made him realize that he will surpass the 100 Premier League goals mark due to the qualities he possessed.
The Belgium international joined Chelsea from his native club Anderlecht in 2011. He struggled to make his way into the Blues' first team that already had big name players in the lineup. Lack of playing time at Stamford Bridge saw him go out on loan.
He joined West Bromwich Albion on a season-long loan in 2012. He impressed for the Baggies and that saw him attract interest from Everton. The Merseyside club signed Lukaku initially on loan in 2013 and made the deal permanent a year later.
Lukaku's fine display for the Toffees saw his former club Chelsea and United come calling last summer. He snubbed an opportunity to join the west London club and made a switch to Old Trafford last summer.
The frontman has been in fine for the Red Devils and scored his 100th Premier League goal against Swansea City. He stressed that putting in more time on the training pitch helps him eliminate fear.
"In the Premier League, I started at 19 [years old], so I knew that I will be one of those guys that's going to reach 100. That's just the belief that I have in my qualities, but it all starts with the work that I put in," Lukaku told United's official website.
"Hard work eliminates fear. That's how I think. So, the more I put the work in, the more confident I am in certain situations because I've worked on it. I know what to do, I know where to do it and I don't fear anything. If I fail, it's no problem. There's another opportunity."
United will face West Brom in the next league tie on April 10 following their 3-2 win over Manchester City.
Lukaku will face his former club when the two sides clash on Sunday. They are in the relegation zone and are more likely to be one of the three clubs to be dropped to the Championship. The striker stressed it's painful for him to find the Baggies in this situation.
"It's a painful one for me, because a few of those guys are my friends, so it's hard for me to see them in that position," he explained.
"But sometimes it's good to, like, take a step back and then bounce and learn from it and try and improve on it. I just hope they don't go down and that they can learn from the mistakes that they made in the pre-season or whatever.
"I don't know what their problem has been this season, because you only watch the highlights, so you don't know what's happening in their game, but I just hope they find the key to success for the Premier League."