Roberto Martinez has described the Crystal Palace-bound Michy Batshuayi as a ‘natural goal-scorer’ after his ruthless brace in Belgium’s 5-1 thrashing of Iceland on Tuesday night, while speaking to RTL.
Just three days after Gareth Southgate’s England inched past the very same opposition in a tale of two penalties, a free-flowing Belgian side ripped Iceland apart like wet tissue paper at the King Badouin stadium.
While Kevin de Bruyne produced yet another midfield masterclass, setting up goals for Dries Mertens and teen sensation Jeremy Doku, it was a seldom-seen striker who was the star of the show.
Batshuayi offered a timely reminder of his lethal finishing skills as Belgium made it two wins from two in the Nations League, tapping home from a rebound early on before netting his 18th international goal with a gorgeous second-half back-heel.
Martinez, who has publicly expressed concern over Batshuayi’s lack of game-time at Chelsea, was thrilled to see the £33 million front man thrive in the absence of Romelu Lukaku.
“Michy Batshuayi has proven again that he is a real goal-scorer and his performances in the national team speak for themselves. I am very happy with his performance,” says the former Everton boss.
Nieuwsblad reports that Batshuayi is on the verge of a return to Crystal Palace, heading to Selhurst Park on loan for the second time in his career.
The Eagles are set to take over his £110,000-a-week wages, in the hope that the 26-year-old can rediscover the form that saw him score five goals in nine Premier League starts for the Londoners in 2018/19.
Speaking to RTBF after his two-goal haul, Batshuayi suggested that his move to Palace is imminent.
Crystal Palace’s record signings
Christian Benteke – £27 million
Mamadou Sakho – £22 million
Eberechi Eze – £19.5 million
Patrick van Aanholt – £14 million
Andros Townsend – £13 million