The Belgian striker went into the tie with a huge point to prove. His performances in the previous game showed his lack of sharpness and pedigree inside the 18-yard-area. Four days on and it was a rejuvenated Lukaku, much like the one we’re used to seeing in the Premier League. He terrorized a rather flaky Irish defence and worked in tandem with creative geniuses like Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard. Lukaku was rightly handed the Man of the Match award. Here’s a look at his two strikes on the day:

This is how Twitter reacted to the Belgian’s performance at Bordeaux:

However, before Lukaku broke the deadlock, he was target to immense criticism from the fans.

Is Romelu Lukaku Stamford Bridge bound?

Chelsea's Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku (R) vies with Aston Villa's Dutch defender Ron Vlaar (L) during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge in London on August 21, 2013. Chelsea won the game 2-1. AFP PHOTO/OLLY GREENWOOD RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO USE WITH UNAUTHORIZED AUDIO, VIDEO, DATA, FIXTURE LISTS, CLUB/LEAGUE LOGOS OR LIVE SERVICES. ONLINE IN-MATCH USE LIMITED TO 45 IMAGES, NO VIDEO EMULATION. NO USE IN BETTING, GAMES OR SINGLE CLUB/LEAGUE/PLAYER PUBLICATIONS. (Photo credit should read OLLY GREENWOOD/AFP/Getty Images)

OLLY GREENWOOD/AFP/Getty Images

It is credit to performances like these why Antonio Conte wants to bring the former Chelsea striker back at Stamford (via ESPN ). Lukaku could partner Diego Costa to form a formidable strike force. The Belgian’s pace could even see him play as wing-forward and if the Italian opts to deploy a 3-4-3 setup at the club, the current Everton maverick could play on either sides of the #9.

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