Manchester United defender Eric Bailly has joined in the show of support for under-fire striker Romelu Lukaku.
Romelu Lukaku started the season for Manchester United in stunning form but the goals have since dried up, causing some fans to turn against the Belgium international.
Lukaku has scored 11 times this term in 15 appearances but has not found the back of the net since last month’s 4-0 win over Crystal Palace.
Jose Mourinho has already backed the striker, calling him “untouchable” and urging supporters to lay off their £75million summer signing.
And the Ivory Coast defender defender Bailly has similarly come out in support of his team-mate ahead of United’s Champions League clash with Benfica on Tuesday night (7.45pm).
“I think Romelu is an excellent player,” the Ivory Coast international said.
“I’ve played against him and now I’m fortunate to be in the same team as him.
“Everyone knows what he is. He’s been doing well for us and scoring goals and it’s important that he keeps doing his job.
“He is such an important part of the side and we all appreciate what he brings to the team.”
Speaking after United’s 1-0 win over Tottenham at the weekend during which Lukaku took some flak from supporters, Mourinho said: “Romelu is one of the players that should be untouchable in terms of the respect of everyone.
“It’s not one goal or the ball goes against the post or a save by the opposition keeper that can make Romelu’s contribution below the top level.
“He is playing extremely well for us and yes I have to protect my players when I feel they deserve it.
“And Romelu always deserves it because what he does for the team is fantastic. Playing football for a striker isn’t just about scoring goals.”