Ronald Koeman has seen top young players sold despite his wishes before, and he’ll see it again, but will do everything in his power to make sure Everton’s top talent stays at Goodison Park.
The new Toffees boss knows that young stars Romelu Lukaku, Ross Barkley and John Stones are in demand, having been linked with powerful European clubs as far and wide as Manchester United to Real Madrid.
Lukaku’s status is especially problematic given his seeming desire to leave Everton. But Koeman said he’ll try to convince Lukaku there’s room to improve on Merseyside.
And hopefully his experience being run through the gamut at Saints will help him.
“I know that experience. I have that experience,” he said. “Over the last two years, I always had a lot of interest in the players. First of all, like everybody, we want to keep these key players because you don’t sell your best players.
“But that is about meetings that I will have with this kind of players. Then we will see what happens.
Barkley seems the most important piece to keep, though all three carry value for different reasons. As the post on Everton’s site points out, Stones could benefit under one of the best center backs of his generation in Koeman.