Ross Barkley

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Barkley speaks out, denies reports that he underwent Chelsea medical

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Ross Barkley has finally set the record straight.

On his Twitter account Saturday, Barkley wrote in three separate tweets that he didn’t pull out at the last second of a Chelsea medical and that he’s decided while he recovers from his hamstring injury suffered in August, he’ll wait until January to decide his future.

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After it had been reported that Everton and Chelsea had agreed a fee for Barkley to join the London club, it was then confirmed by Everton owner Farhad Moshiri that Barkley had a change of heart at the last moment. That led to rumors and twists and turns in the tabloids that Barkley had undergone a medical and changed his mind in the middle of it to stay with Everton.

“The two clubs agreed a deal of £35 million ($45.3 million) and I think personal terms were agreed,” Moshiri told Sky Sports News on transfer deadline day. “After the medical we heard from Paul Martin, Ross Barkley’s agent, that he had changed his mind and wanted to reconsider his position during the January window — that is the latest.”

Barkley has one year remaining on his Everton contract but manager Ronald Koeman said earlier this summer that the Englishman isn’t in his plans moving forward.

Considering that agents receive a fee on transfers and not on free transfers, it appears that it was Barkley’s decision to stay until at least January, though his transfer value will drop significantly with the possibility that any club can sign him as a free agent six months later.

Barkley leaves Chelsea medical, but may move in January

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One of the wildest stories of transfer deadline day doesn’t have to do with a player rushing to get to a ground in time for a medical, or a team offering a crazy figure to land a surprise player.

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Nope, the top eyebrow raiser today comes from the cold feet of Ross Barkley, cold because he hasn’t played in some time due to injury and colder on account of this:

Sky Sports reports that Chelsea and Everton agreed on a $39 million deal for the 23-year-old Barkley, and the player headed to Cobham for a medical.

However:

“The midfielder travelled to London and began his medical, but Sky Sports News understands he changed his mind and is expected to return to Everton. Wow!”

Wow, indeed. Did the boyhood Toffee change his mind about leaving home, or just not like the feel of Cobham? Could Barkley be realizing that the grass isn’t always greener?

Well, perhaps it’s nothing like that. Barkley is out for 2-3 months, and could be had on a free in several months’ time. That wouldn’t make any friends at Everton.

Here’s The Telegraph’s Matt Law:

Ronald Koeman confirms Ross Barkley to leave Everton

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Ronald Koeman has confirmed that Ross Barkley will not play for Everton.

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Barkley, 23, has just one year left on his current deal at Everton but the playmaker has turned down a new deal with his boyhood club and Koeman revealed he wants a “new challenge” elsewhere.

When asked if he was certain Barkley would leave Koeman replied “100 percent” but he did state that there aren’t any offers on the table as things stand.

Ahead of Everton’s UEFA Europa League third qualifying round firs leg against MFK Ruzomberok at Goodison Park on Thursday, Koeman revealed the new about Barkley. 

“His personal situation is not so difficult. We made a really good offer to him to sign a new contract and he declined that contract and he told me he is looking for a new challenge,” Koeman said. “It is not Everton’s future anymore. It is his decision. I need to respect that and we will see what happens because what I heard from the board at the moment, it’s not really an offer on the table for Ross.”

The England international is currently recovering from surgery on his groin and is expected to be out until the end of August.

With Davy Klaassen, Wayne Rooney and Sandro Ramirez arriving this summer, plus the Toffees pushing hard to sign Gylfi Sigurdsson from Swansea City, it’s not difficult to see why Barkley sees his future elsewhere and the enigmatic attacking midfielder was criticized by Koeman on multiple occasions last season.

Where could Barkley go?

Tottenham and Arsenal are destinations which keep cropping up but neither are likely to spend over $30 million to bring him to north London and neither are exactly short of playmaking midfielders. It’s probably right that Barkley, once the brightest hope of English soccer, gets a fresh start elsewhere as his contract situation has left the fanbase, and Koeman, more than a little frustrated over the past 12 months.

After losing his starting spot with the English national team to Dele Alli over the past year, plus his regular spot at Everton under severe threat, Barkley’s career is reaching a pivotal stage.

The young talent who burst onto the scene ahead of the 2014 World Cup was supposed to be the next Rooney but his career is in real danger of petering out if he doesn’t find the right club to fit his talents and help him regain his form. The talent is there with Barkley but many, including Koeman, have questioned his commitment to truly realize his potential.

Transfer rumor roundup: Matic to Manchester United; Barkley, Everton news

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Tottenham Hotspur’s depth means it can wait out Everton as the Toffees demand plenty of money for young star Ross Barkley.

The 23-year-old England international won’t sign a new deal with Everton, and Ronald Koeman has been clear that he’s ready to cash in on the wantaway midfielder.

[ MORE: Latest on Ronaldo ]

Spurs are interested according to Sky Sports, but rolling their eyes at a requested fee of close to $64 million. So the North Londoners will wait, a move that makes sense given Barkley’s up-and-down form.

The Liverpool Echo says that Koeman is close to making it official with Sandro Ramirez, as the ex-Barcelona prospect will join Jordan Pickford and Davy Klaassen as new Toffees in a $7 million deal.

The BBC says Koeman will quickly move onto two more transfers, aiming to woo Gylfi Sigurdsson from Swansea City and center back Michael Keane from Burnley.


The Manchester Evening News says Manchester United is close to reuniting Jose Mourinho with defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic.

The tough-minded Serbian turns 29 in August, and would give Mourinho flexibility with Paul Pogba and Ander Herrera. United also has Michael Carrick as a deep-lying option.

Matic has 121 Premier League appearances and two titles since returning to Chelsea in January 2014.


 

Koeman not confident Barkley will stay at Everton; “not worried” either

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One week ago Friday, Ronald Koeman reiterated Everton’s stance that Ross Barkley is still very much wanted at Goodison Park, provided he signs a new long-term contract soon — very soon… like, before-the-start-of-the-summer soon.

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With the 2016-17 Premier League season coming to close with Championship Sunday in less than 48 hours’ time, time is running out on the (loose) club-imposed deadline for Barkley to accept and sign the contract offered to him. Whether or not the 23-year-old opts to sign, Koeman wants everyone to believe he’s not bothered either way — quotes from the Guardian:

“Either he accepts the contract, or we sell the player.”

When then asked if he felt confident that Barkley would stay, Koeman said: “No, because it is a long time that he is thinking about his future. But I’m not worried because I like to work with players who like to stay. And it is not about his decision. We will go on. We are looking for players in that position. Even if he stays, there will be more competition for him next season.”

“If you offer a player a new contract, and a good contract, that means that you like to keep the player. I spoke to the player, the board spoke to the player and his agent. We need an answer after the weekend. I don’t know what will happen if he doesn’t give any answer about that.”

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As Koeman says, Everton will either retain arguably their second-best player (Romelu Lukaku‘s future will likely turn into a protracted transfer saga as well), or they’ll cash in for a fee of around $30 million. The problem is, without UEFA Champions League football to offer incoming recruits, they’re unlikely to land a replacement of Barkley’s caliber.