Romelu Lukaku haunted West Ham United yet again as he netted twice on his Premier League debut for a rampant Manchester United in a 4-0 win on Sunday.
Lukaku netted either side of half-time before Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba completed the scoring against slow-starting West Ham, who lost their opening Premier League game of the season for the 11th time.
The Belgian striker, who cost United £90m this summer from Everton, has now scored 11 times in his last 11 league appearances against the Hammers.
The result means Jose Mourinho still has never lost a home match on a Sunday in all competitions – a run stretching 112 games.
Manchester United Two summer signings were handed starts – Nemanja Matic and Romelu Lukaku, but Victor Lindelhof didn’t make the squad. West Ham gave Premier League debuts to their four new additions – Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Marko Arnautovic and Javier Hernandez.
United’s main problem last season was scoring at Old Trafford as they managed just 26, which was two less than relegated Hull City. Lukaku was snapped up to improve that tally and took just 33 minutes to introduce himself to his adoring crowd.
Marcus Rashford – lively throughout – sprinted at the heart of the West Ham back four and slipped a delightful ball through to the Belgian, who smashed a first-time effort past Joe Hart via the inside of the post.
Lukaku didn’t have to wait long until after the break to double his league tally. Mkhitaryan clipped a free-kick into the box from the left and Lukaku rose ahead of his marker Arthur Masuaku, who seemed to be sharing a joke with the striker before the ball was played in, to glance home from eight yards out.
West Ham almost replied instantly when Edmilson Fernandes’ cross found Marko Arnautovic, who got the wrong side of Daley Blind, but his header was tipped onto the crossbar by David de Gea. That was as good as it got for the visitors as they struggled to get former United man Javier Hernandez into the game on his full debut.
United pressed on for more goals as Lukaku hunted a hat-trick. He was denied by a brilliant sliding block from Pablo Zabaleta on 64 minutes before Rashford struck the inside of the post with a fabulous effort from 25 yards.
With West Ham pushing for a late salvo, United struck twice late on with Martial finishing off a flowing move instigated by Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pogba curling home a fantastic effort from 20 yards.
This was Mourinho’s biggest Premier League win as United manager, and their biggest home win in the Premier League since his Chelsea side beat Arsenal 6-0 in March 2014.
Man Utd: De Gea (7), Valencia (7), Jones (7), Bailly (7), Blind (7), Matic (9), Pogba (8), Mata (8), Mkhitaryan (8), Rashford (9), Lukaku (9).
Subs: Fellaini (6), Martial (7)
West Ham: Hart (6), Zabaleta (5), Reid (6), Ogbonna (6), Masuaku (5), Noble (6), Obiang (6), Fernandes (5), Ayew (5), Arnautovic (6), Hernandez (6)
Subs: Cresswell (6), Sakho (6), Rice (6)
Man of the match: Nemanja Matic
Man of the match – Nemanja Matic
“I can’t think of one reason why Chelsea sold him.” That was Gary Neville’s assessment after Matic’s impressive display on his Premier League debut for Manchester United.
The midfielder won possession more times than any of his team-mates (11), played more passes (69), had more touches (89) and covered more ground (11.41km). As if that wasn’t enough, he also got the crowd out of their seats when he embarked on a mazy run down the right wing that saw him jink past several West Ham players.
Romelu Lukaku has now scored on his Premier League debut for three different clubs (West Bromwich Albion, Everton, Manchester United).
The Red Devils have won more opening day games in Premier League history than any other side (17), while West Ham have lost the most (11).
The Belgian also became the 18th player to score on his Premier League debut for Manchester United, and the fourth to score a brace.