Everton have signed Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku for a club-record fee of £28million. The Belgium international, who spent last season on loan at Goodison Park and was their leading scorer with 16 goals in 33 appearances to help them finish fifth, has agreed a five-year contract. Reports of the move began emerging in the 21-year-old’s homeland earlier on Wednesday and the striker tweeted a picture of himself on a plane with the message “Time to write a new chapter…..”. Press Association Lukaku was manager Roberto Martinez’s primary summer transfer target and while the fee may have blown their previous record – £15million for Lukaku’s compatriot Marouane Fellaini when he moved from Standard Liege in 2008 – the Toffees boss believes the striker’s age and potential mean it was worth paying. The press conference to unveil Lukaku was delayed by more than 80 minutes as Everton were still waiting for a final piece of the player’s paperwork to be returned to the club.
Monk sparked controversy last month when he branded Stoke’s Victor Moses a cheat after the Swans were beaten at the Britannia Stadium. His latest frustration came during a stale Barclays Premier League contest at Goodison Park as his side, who were later reduced to 10 men, were denied a penalty after an unspotted handball by Toffees defender Antolin Alcaraz. Shelvey barged into James McCarthy for an obvious second bookable offence after receiving a first yellow card for a petulant act. Monk said: “The first, you can’t kick the ball away. That is the one I am disappointed with Jonjo with. It is something he needs to learn from very quickly. “Once we are on a yellow, at this moment in time, the way things are for us, it becomes highly likely we will end up with a red. Any sort of contact usually results in a red.” In those circumstances, Monk was pleased with the result. He said: “I thought we were brilliant defensively after that. I said to the boys, you will probably never get a harder point than today in terms of the way the game panned out. I’m proud of the players and they should be proud of themselves.” Everton boss Roberto Martinez conceded the game was a flat occasion and even joked that it might have helped had his side conceded the penalty. He said: “I haven’t seen it but maybe we should have conceded early and opened the game up. For two teams with an incredible footballing philosophy, it was a bit of a bad game from an attacking point of view. “We had to work really hard to stop Swansea but in terms of the way they were trying to run the clock down, I felt they were clearly very focused on defending well and they did extremely well but it became a frustrating game for us. “We were just a little bit pedestrian. The way we moved the ball wasn’t quick enough. We didn’t have our normal tempo in possession and that allowed us to get frustrated. “I think the red card was against us in terms of allowing Swansea to have a clear role from that point until the end.” Everton also lost defender Alcaraz with a shoulder injury after he collided with Wilfried Bony. It had only been a fourth appearance of the season for the Paraguayan, whose first season at the club was marred by injury, and now he faces another lengthy spell out. Martinez said: “That is a real negative. Antolin has damaged a joint in his shoulder. We will assess him tonight and tomorrow and now it seems he is going to be out for a long spell. It is a real shame.” Press Association Swansea boss Garry Monk bemoaned more bad decisions but insisted he does not complain about referees after his side’s goalless draw at Everton. Monk said: “I didn’t know you were allowed to play with two goalkeepers. “I thought it was a great save from Alcaraz, with very strong wrists. It is something I will be showing my goalkeepers in training to make sure they get down well with one arm. “But it was only with one arm, so I’ll let that one go. He actually saved the ball. It is not like it just struck his arm. We all saw it, all the players saw it, but the ref didn’t see it.” Referees chief Mike Riley has also been in Monk’s firing line of late but the Swans boss has now met with him and Professional Game Match Officials Limited technical director Howard Webb to discuss grievances. Monk said: “The comments I made at Stoke were for a reason. I just wanted clarification on a few different decisions that have gone against us with Mike and Howard and we had a good conversation. “I am not here to complain about the refs. I think the refs do a great job. It is just about getting clarification so I can relay that to my players. “At this moment in time we are having a lot of wrong decisions in a short period, and it is affecting us. We have to get through this period where the odd 50-50s go against us, rather than for us.” Monk, however, had no complaints about the 72nd-minute dismissal of Jonjo Shelvey – apart from with the player himself – which left his side needing to cling on for a point.
Syracuse picked up a big signing Wednesday – literally.Six-foot-8, 290-pound offensive tackle Denzel Ward from Simeon Vocational High School in Chicago signed with the Orange. Ward is a three-star recruit and is ranked No. 79 at his position by Scout.com.Broadcasting his decision on Campus Insiders, Ward reached first for a South Florida hat before redirecting his arm to his left over a Vanderbilt cap and grabbing a hat with Otto the Orange’s face on it.Going into national signing day Wednesday, Ward had narrowed his teams down to Syracuse, South Florida and Vanderbilt after turning down offers from other programs including Florida, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Wisconsin.He joins two-star guard Aaron Roberts – another Chicago product – as the second offensive lineman in the Orange’s Class of 2014. Ward also becomes the seventh recruit from the Midwest to pledge to SU in the incoming class.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Comments Published on February 5, 2014 at 11:06 am Contact Phil: email@example.com | @PhilDAbb Facebook Twitter Google+