Belgium Under 19 assistant manager Erik van Meir believes Manchester City winger Jeremy Doku is “even more explosive than Eden Hazard.”
Speaking as a pundit for Belgian TV channel Play Sports (quotes via VoetbalBelgie.be), van Meir compared and contrasted Doku to the Chelsea legend, as well as his current teammate Jack Grealish:
“Some people continually say that he doesn’t score enough goals or provide assists. But he is oh so dangerous and almost continuously so. He can cause danger in close quarters and also from long distances. His starting speed is insane.”
“Doku is even faster than Eden Hazard in his best days. He is even more explosive than Eden Hazard, who was better on the ball. But I am sure he will put together better statistics than Grealish.”
After a rather muted debut against Fulham, Doku sprung to life with an influential performance versus West Ham at the weekend. His superb run and finish just after half-time got his side back into the game after the Hammers took a 1-0 lead.
Doku’s end product has been questioned
As van Meir mentions, the 21-year-old was criticised for failing to score enough at his previous team Rennes. In 92 appearances for the Ligue One side, he hit the back of the net just 12 times.
There are a couple of mitigating circumstances to take into account though. Doku did have his injury problems in France, which limited his effectiveness. Secondly, at City, he will be playing in a more dominant team where he should have more chances in front of goal.
Guardiola was fulsome in his praise of the City winger
City boss Pep Guardiola described Doku’s display against West Ham as “unbelievable” and it will be hoped that the Belgian international can maintain that level going forward.
With Jack Grealish set to miss the game against Red Star Belgrade this evening (Tuesday 19th September), Doku will be hoping to start for a third consecutive match.