Why Barkley Should Stick With The Toffees


Manchester City have been heavily linked with a huge bid for Everton’s gifted youngster Ross Barkley. According to The Guardian, mega-rich City could be willing to pay £50m for the English darling.

Now obviously if that bid materialises it would be tempting for both Everton and Barkley, as that kind of money is life changing.

But if I could advise the player, I would warn him against such a move.

We all know Ross is a very talented player and his stock would have only risen after his World Cup showing, not many in the England squad can say that!

As a footballer, he excites the crowd. He has craft and vision. His ability to control the ball whilst running directly at opponents, shows glimpses of a young Paul Gascoigne. He can score a wonder goal or two.

Basically he has all the tools to go on and succeed at the top level of European football.

But he’s still only twenty, so he isn’t the finished article yet. Staying at Everton for another two years could be key in Barkley reaching his full potential.


Well its simple. At Goodison, he’ll get more game time. Look at the current crop of English talent City have at their disposal; Joe Hart, Micah Richards, James Milner, Jack Rodwell and Scott Sinclair. Only Joe Hart is a regular starter, after Hart only Milner managed more than ten league starts last term with the EPL champions. Sinclair went to WBA on loan (did nothing) and between them Rodwell and Richards only managed three starts!

Man City’s England contingent have been wary of the lack of first team exposure for a while now. Adam Johnson departed the Etihad in 2012 complaining about the lack of first team opportunities. Gareth Barry and Joleon Lescott, who were both key members of the championship winning squad in 2011/12, both left on free transfers this summer without much fuss. If press reports are true then Micah Richards and James Milner also want to depart in search of more games elsewhere. Seems quite strange especially considering the Champions League demanding you have a certain amount of home grown players in your pool.

Rodwell is the one Barkley should look at closely. They both made their way into the Everton first team after developing through the Toffees youth ranks. Jack also had terrific potential but his career has stalled at City. Obviously injuries have hampered his time in Manchester but you’re not allowed too much time to learn from your mistakes or a chance to get used to your surroundings at City. If you don’t hit the ground running then the chances are you’ll be dropped and it will take you a long time to get back into the first team. That’s what happens at most elite clubs these days.

That is a lot of pressure for a player who still needs to develop.

Plus at Everton, Roberto Martinez will have his team perfectly set up to help the youngster. He will have Gareth Barry and James McCarthy (should he stay) playing behind Barkley and that will see them giving him the ball and protecting him if needs be.

At City where would he fit in?

They already have Yaya Toure, Fernandinho and David Silva. They’ve also just signed Fernando and still have James Milner and Jack Rodwell. The chat about Toure going looks like that is all it is, chat.

For me, Ross Barkley should hope that no bid comes in. He needs to get into the Everton side and cement himself a regular starting berth. He should be looking to start thirty games plus next term in the Premier League. His target in terms of goals should be to get into double figures. With his vision for a great pass, Barkley should be creating more assists, he didn’t create a single goal last season. At Everton, he will also get a chance to shine in the Europa League which should give him his first taste of European competition.

Then the ultimate goal, in terms of international football, should be getting into the England first team in time for the Euros in 2016.

Once he’s proved himself at Everton and is starting for England, then and only then should he consider leaving Goodison. In the summer of 2016, Ross Barkley will be twenty-two.

There is no need to jump at the first chance at a ‘Top Four’ club and the wages that they can tempt you with. Look at Gareth Bale, he turned down Man Utd and Arsenal for Spurs. He managed to grow as a player at White Hart Lane and has now just won the Champions League with Real Madrid.

So remember Ross, patience really can be a virtue and it can come with the best rewards!

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