Osman on Lukaku: 'He's a quality player'

Leon Osman thinks Everton would benefit from the Belgian forward returning to the club after a successful loan spell.

Everton midfielder Leon Osman will be pleased to see Romelu Lukaku returning to Goodison Park on a permanent basis following a productive campaign last term, helping Everton to a fifth-place finish. 

The 21-year-old scored 16 goals in 33 games for the Toffees last season and manager Roberto Martinez has said the club will sign a striker this summer - and a deal is said to be close to completion. 

Osman is quoted by Sky Sports from before reports of Lukaku's signing broke, saying: "He's a quality player. He showed that when he came last year and scored a number of goals. We could really do with him back and we hope he's coming back."

There were suggestions this morning that Chelsea be holding out for as much as £30 million, which may have been out of Everton's price range, but different reports have different figures, suggesting fees between £18 million and £25 million.

With Everton harbouring ambitions of trying qualifying for next season's Champions League after threatening to overhaul Arsenal last season, combined with their commitments in the Europa League this term, quality additions are needed as Lukaku joins Gareth Barry in making his loan move permanent.

Osman added: "The manager sees that he needs to strengthen and we welcome new players coming in because it adds competition. I'm sure the manager's going to bring more in. As to what positions he chooses to bring them in, that's up to him.

"It's great that the manager is bringing in players and he's bringing in quality players. We've all seen what Gareth Barry can do and we're pleased he's staying."

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