Martin Keown backs Everton duo Ross Barkley and Romelu Lukaku to emulate Liverpool stars

Barkley, Lukaku, Barry

The duo could become as good as Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres.

Romelu Lukaku's recent goal against Aston Villa in a 3-1 win at Villa Park on Tuesday night saw the Belgian take his tally for the season to 22 overall and 17 goals in the Premier League. That is the highest goal-scoring record of any player in the Premier League for Everton.

His form has been magnificent this season yet still he finds himself criticised by some on numerous occasions regarding his performances for Everton.

One man who certainly feels he can do better is former Everton defender Martin Keown. Writing in his column for the Daily Mail

He believes that Lukaku's form fluctuates too much and that he and the club need to demand more from his performances:

"There are times when he can play like a tiger but other times he is a pussy cat.

"I know he has 22 goals but maybe the club and the player himself need to demand more. When he gets on the pitch the game has to be the single most important thing in his life.

"Maybe I’m greedy but there’s one hell of a player there. Lukaku has all the attributes.

"He’s got fantastic pace but he needs to show that more often and when he wants to be he can be as good in the air as somebody like Andy Carroll."

But he did not just cast an eye on Lukaku. Keown was also critical of his Everton players who sometimes miss opportunities to play him in.

In particular he spoke about Ross Barkley, who he feels can become the Steven Gerrard to Lukaku's Fernando Torres at Goodison Park:

"He can certainly be tidier in his build-up play and I do feel Everton ignore him a lot. They can over-pass and miss opportunities.

"I also think the relationship between Lukaku and Ross Barkley has to improve. I’ve said in the past that their partnership could be like Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard.

"They were a superb duo and Gerrard used to put the ball on a plate for Torres. I think Barkley can improve in that area, to find space and play passes into Lukaku - but he can improve his movement to make it easier for Barkley.

"Those two certainly have the potential and the ability to create a special partnership."

The former Liverpool pair formed a destructive partnership under Rafa Benitez at Anfield and it nearly guided the club to a Premier League title back in 2008-09.

If Everton could ignite something similar among their current pair then they would, without doubt, be in the top six this season.

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