Belgium’s Romelu Lukaku ‘scared to celebrate’ goal due to VAR

Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku is “scared to celebrate” when he scores after having three goals ruled out after video review at the European Championship, teammate Jérémy Doku said on Monday.

Lukaku had two goals overturned by VAR in Belgium’s shock 1-0 loss to Slovakia last week, one for offside and one for an earlier handball by Loïs Openda. VAR spotted another offside when Lukaku scored in the 2-0 win over Romania on Saturday that got Belgium’s campaign on track.

Lukaku has yet to score a valid goal at Euro 2024, but Doku said his teammate remains upbeat.

“He would have liked to have the goals because, now when he scores, I think he’s scared to celebrate,” Doku said. “He didn’t have a lot of luck, but he’s happy.

“He’s happy because we won our last game. Of course, as a striker, he always wants to score and of course you think of your individual stats, it’s normal. But he’s happy with the impact that he’s having on our team and the chances he’s creating.

“If you watch the games you can see how important he is for us. He didn’t score, but he gave an assist and that’s important as well.”

Belgium takes on Ukraine in its last game on Wednesday in Group E, the most even of all at Euro 2024 will all four teams on three points each.

“The pressure is there, but we just want to win the game,” Doku said. “We don’t have to look at the other teams. Even if we had already six points we’d want to win the game. Now there’s a little more tension of course, but that’s what we like.”

Information from The Associated Press was used in this story.