- Lukaku was in rampant form as Belgium saw off Russia in their opening game in Euro 2020
- The Inter Milan star paid tribute to Christian Eriksen after scoring the opener in the first half
- Lukaku yelled “Christ, I love you” to the cameras after breaking the deadlock
- Eriksen collapsed on the pitch during Denmark’s game against Finland but is in stable condition
Romelu Lukaku paid a touching tribute to his club teammate Christian Eriksen as Belgium cruised to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Russia in a Euro 2020 Group B cracker.
There were concerns the match could be postponed following Eriksen’s plight as the Danish international collapsed in the 43rd minute during the other match against Finland.
But Denmark and Finland players, as per the wishes of Eriksen, soldiered on and resumed their clash which ended in a 1-0 win for Finland, with Belgium’s game against Russia following soon after.
Lukaku opened the scoring for his country after capitalizing on a mistake by Andrey Semenov.
It was the 28-year old’s celebration that caught the attention of the world as he rushed to the cameras before screaming, “Chris I love you.” In a delightful message to his Inter teammate Eriksen.
Belgium were 2-0 up before the break thanks to Thomas Meunier who slotted in after Anton Shunin failed to hold a cross.
Lukaku rounded off the scoring in the closing stages of the match with a composed finish to send Belgium top of Group B on goal difference.
There were a number of Eriksen’s club teammates in Belgium vs Russia game, and boss Roberto Martinez was among the first to express concern on the mental state of the players ahead of the game.
"It was a real shock. We have team-mates in that dressing and players who have shared a lot of time with Eriksen.” Martinez said before the game.
"We hope he has a full speed of recovery."
An update from the Danish FA which clarified that Eriksen was “awake” seemed to calm nerves not only around the world, but among the players as well.
Belgium were the highest-scoring European side in qualifiers, scoring a staggering 40 goals, and continued their impressive form in front of 34,000 fans in St Petersburg.
Their next game is against Denmark on Thursday, June 17, while Russia will face Finland in the other Group B game.
Relief as Eriksen continues recovery
Thanks to the swift action of medical staff at the Parken Stadium, Eriksen was conscious when he was stretchered off the field after collapsing.
UEFA was among the first bodies to issue a statement on the former Tottenham man’s health as they clarified he was stable and would undergo further tests.