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“Everton flop” – How did the UK media react to Lookman’s outstanding Europa League final performance?

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The performance of Super Eagles attacker Ademola Lookman in Atalanta BC’s UEFA Europa League final against Bayer Leverkusen has been the topic of discussion in the football community, Soccernet.ng reports.

The former RB Leipzig forward single-handedly scored a hat-trick in the clash, making him the first player to ever achieve this in a Europa League final.

However, this stellar performance has been largely overlooked by the UK media, who have sensationalized other aspects of the match and ignored his contribution.

How UK Media Perceived Lookman’s Performance

Born in England, Lookman began his career with Charlton Athletic before joining Everton, where he struggled to make an impact. He was then loaned to RB Leipzig, where he gradually found his form.

During his time at Everton, Lookman scored just four goals in 48 appearances, leading to his being labeled a flop. Even during a loan spell at Fulham, he managed only four goals.

In their coverage, some UK media outlets focused on his past struggles. For instance, The Mirror referred to him as an “Everton Flop” who had put up a magnificent performance to break Bayer Leverkusen’s unbeaten record.

Ademola Lookman

Lookman was pivotal to Atalanta’s victory, yet Sky Sports only mentioned Atalanta’s Europa League win, featuring another player’s image in their social media graphic.

SkySports on Ademola Lookman

Nigerian Journalists React

Many Nigerian journalists have called the UK media’s reportage “disrespectful,” arguing that the Nigerian star should be celebrated for his heroics rather than linked to his past struggles.

“Why ‘Everton Flop,’ @DailyMirror? This is disrespectful. You guys can do better,” said France-based Nigerian journalist Ojora Babatunde.

A Togolese Editor-in-Chief of Infosports1, Aime Atti, also criticized the coverage, calling it nonsense: “A ‘bird’ calling a Super Eagle a ‘flop’ on the night the latter netted a hat-trick. That’s nonsense.”

Journalist Toyosi Afolayan from Bounce Sports added, “A man who isn’t a teen anymore has developed and is now a better player.”

Lookman Emerges as a Big Contender for African Player of the Year

Lookman emerged as the hero in Dublin. His hattrick secured the 3-0 win and inflicted the previously unbeaten German champions’ first defeat of the season on Wednesday night.

As a result, the Nigerian attacker stands out as a frontrunner for the CAF Player of the Year award, with an impressive record in the 2023–24 season.

His achievements include clinching the Europa League title with Atalanta, earning an Africa Cup of Nations silver medal, contributing three goals and one assist during the tournament, and being named AFCON Man of the Match as well as Europa League Man of the Match.

Currently, Lookman has an impressive tally of 15 goals and eight assists for Atalanta this season, further solidifying his position as a standout player deserving of the prestigious award.