Barkley looking ahead to Euro2016

, 3 May, 107comments  |  Jump to most recent

Ross Barkley says he more mature now than when he played for England at the 2014 World Cup and he feels more confident in the England camp.

The 22-year-old is almost certain to be included in Roy Hodgson's squad for next month's European Championships in France but it remains to be seen how integral a part he will be of England's quest to win the tournament for the first time.

Hodgson has given Barkley more and more playing time during the qualifying stages and pre-tournament friendlies but neither he nor Dele Alli, another player who will be eyed closely, are yet considered automatic starters.

There has been much talk about whether both players can operate in the same team together as attacking midfielders and while Barkley himself feels they can, the decision obviously rests with Hodgson, a manager renowned for his more conservative outlook.

“I feel more important to the squad now, and more confident when I go into England camps because I've played over 20 games,” Barkley says. “I think I've matured as a player since the World Cup.

“I definitely believe we (him and Alli) can play together if asked, in this tournament and in the future. It's up to Roy what he sees in each game, whether he needs both of us, or one attacking midfielder with a bit of balance.”

Barkley will be joined by at least one Everton team-mate when Hodgson announces his squad for Euro2016, with John Stones expected to be among the travelling party, while Phil Jagielka, Leighton Baines and Tom Cleverley face anxious waits to see if they are selected.

Barkley believes that Stones has the potential to captain his country one day and become a stalwart for the national team for years to come.

“At a young age he's a leader at club level," Barkley continues. "He talks a lot and leads by example.

“He's not your typical English defender, he's more of a ball-playing centre-half, and at international level that's what you need from your central defenders, as well as being solid at the back.

“He's the type of player you would normally see in a Spanish side. He's an unbelievable player, he'll probably play for England for the next 10 or 15 years and reach over 100 caps.”


Reader Comments (107)

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Brent Stephens
1 Posted 03/05/2016 at 19:34:54
I'd like to see him go the Euros and get game time. Part of his continuing development, playing at the highest level, and hopefully would do his confidence a world of good.
Minik Hansen
2 Posted 03/05/2016 at 19:49:09
Exciting times coming yet again. COYB.
Colin Glassar
3 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:06:35
Ross will struggle to get a start as we all know Roy loves lallana, Milner and (even on crutches) Henderson. Now if Ross played for the rs he might get a sniff.
James Stewart
4 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:33:04
Henderson doesn't even get in the RS side, no way he should be anywhere near the squad let alone the team.
Bob Cumiskey
5 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:36:32
Good luck to Ross in the Euros. I don’t think he will have a guaranteed start though.

Hope he takes any chances he gets with both hands.
Tony Abrahams
6 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:36:38
Colin, he has been getting a sniff, so it's up to him, to prove he deserves to play.

Peter Morris
7 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:51:30
I'm sorry to say this but I think Ross has gone backwards since the World Cup. He has matured in years but his game management remains naïve, unpredictable and unreliable, and he appears to have lost his youthful 'verve'. Plus, the percentage of times he surrenders possession is bordering on the criminal. A total enigma to me.
Dave Ganley
8 Posted 03/05/2016 at 20:58:22
Henderson has been injured for a good portion of the season, that's why hes not in the RS side. As for Barkley, its got nothing to do with who he plays for, its more to do that he has been poor this season, especially in the 2nd half of the season, is overweight and Martinez's tactics have sent him totally tonto!!

Allied to that, if the comments that came out of Wembley at half time suggesting he had to be consoled by Jags because if boos for the team are correct, then absolutely no backbone either. Needs to grow a pair and sort himself out and make himself above criticism as opposed to coasting through games and expecting the world to step aside while he waltzes through the defence!!

Oh and a bit of effort wouldn't go amiss either. These are the reasons why he isn't first choice, not because he doesn't play for the RS. It appears the RS have higher standards than we do which is why they tend to get more players picked. Harsh statement but very true.

Alastair Donaldson
9 Posted 03/05/2016 at 21:22:26
Largely depends on how Hodgson wants to play him. He's looked ponderous, slow, heavy and a bit clueless recently. A dip in confidence definately, but he really needs a more settled / forward role no10; he can't tackle evidently, so is that enough for a top flight player.
A change of coach for us would answer some of these questions.
Still, hope he goes and does well... he does seem to benefit from Roy's system.
Brian Harrison
10 Posted 03/05/2016 at 21:31:44
Wouldn't surprise me if Hodgson left him out of the squad. A few weeks back some were questioning whether he would take Rooney. So not sure of how Hodgson will select his squad, on how many forwards or midfield players. But for me on the last 6 months form I think Ross would be a lucky boy to make the squad.
Dave Lynch
11 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:13:41
Tin hat on time.

Bottom line is he's not good enough, he has proven that over the past couple of seasons with us.

At his age, Rooney had pulled up trees, Ross is not a world class player, he's average.

Anybody who thinks otherwise is kidding themselves.

Fran Mitchell
12 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:18:34
Good player, while not world-class, very badly managed.

The style does not suit him (our style suits nobody), the coaching staff are not helping him.....but he has a number of assists and goals, and is still young.

Average he is not. Nor is he world class. But he is a very good player, and I expect him to do well in the summer.

Jeff Armstrong
13 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:31:20
There is a top player in there somewhere, but we have the wrong management team in place to help him, l see him making the same mistakes he was making 4-5 years ago when he first started breaking through.

If someone doesn't shake him up soon, I fear another Rodwell.
Brian Williams
14 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:45:26
To me, Ross is a good player who occasionally does exceptional things. The problem is that the "occasion" is happening less and less. With the right coaching and a good dietician, he could become a player who does exceptional things on a regular basis.

Unfortunately he's not what you'd call an "intelligent" player and plays by instinct. When you coach instinct out of him by making him play to a rigid set plan, you negate his positives. IMHO.

Eddie Dunn
15 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:46:15
Ross plays better for Woy than us. but let's face it, he isn't a patch on Alli.
Alli knows when to play it, is instinctive, has aggression and is the real deal.
Eric Holland
16 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:48:05

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Dave Older
17 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:48:33
Ross has bags of ability and we have all seen flashes of it, but is he really good enough for England? Not for me... Whenever I have watched him play this season, he has not dominated one game. He should have pushed on by now.

Maybe it is the phenomenal one's management style that has brought him down, along with the rest of the squad this season. His form this season doesn't warrant a place in the squad for me.

Delle Alli, however, is different gravy and is far more deserving of an England spot, minus the punching of course... Show us what you are made of, Ross, and prove me wrong!!!!

Dave Lynch
18 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:51:46
In other words Eric, they are talking bollox again.

I blame Osman.

Bill Gall
19 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:54:18
Who said that Woy is definitely going to pick him, maybe if he doesn't, then people will realize how far his standards have fallen this season.
Dave Lynch
20 Posted 03/05/2016 at 22:59:33
Sorry Fran but IMO he is average.

I don't care how badly he's coached, he is not an instinctive footballer, he is not a classy player, his passing and decision making is awfull, he hardly ever puts a tackle in and couldn't head a queue, his free kicks and corners are also woefull.

Ok he makes the odd run forward and all to infrequently has a shot from outside the box but that does not make him a good footballer.

Damian Wilde
21 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:04:56
Completely agree with Dave.
Ray Robinson
22 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:08:02
Strangely enough, his best goals HAVE tended to be instinctive. I think his poor form has been down to thinking too much and complete loss of confidence!
John Daley
23 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:13:51
"...he has been poor...overweight...had to be consoled...absolutely no backbone...needs to grow a pair and sort himself out"

Bloody hell Dave. Sounds just like the casting director from Fight Club mulling over whether to give fucking Meatloaf the role of 'Bitch tits Bob'.

John Malone
24 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:26:53
Have to agree with most of above comments too much off Roberto's smoke has been blew up Ross' fat arse!

He's miles off Delle Alli he play's like a school kid which has got to have a lot to do with the bullshitter gaffer we have telling him it's ok to lose the ball when it's definitely not!

He could be world class with the right coaching!

Jon Cox
25 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:34:38
Dave 20,

Totally agree, but that's enough about Lukaku.

What about Barkley?

Keith Harrison
26 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:55:25
If Ross is looking forward to the Euros it must be because he has a new 60" 4k Ultra HD telly, because if he plays the next three games like the last one, he won't need a passport.
David Barks
27 Posted 03/05/2016 at 23:57:43
John Cox,

Way to come off as a completely uneducated footballer. Lukaku is probably the only reason we aren't down there fighting with Newcastle and Sunderland. Lukaku scored goals, made runs.

Why the hell would Lukaku have been taking corners and be expected to be making all these tackles. Barkley is the one in midfield. I much prefer my striker to be up top ready to pounce.

Barkley has been poor, slow on the ball, easily brushed off the ball, terrible defensively, and looks over weight. He should be doing much much more. At least Lukaku contributed with goals, which is his job after all.

Charlie Lloyd
28 Posted 03/05/2016 at 00:10:01
Agree with most.

Galls me to say but he has not developed as we would have hoped. He doesn't have the passion that is required along with the intelligence.

A player who looked world class on the local park who never transferred it to the top stage.

That's reality.

Geoff Risebrow
29 Posted 04/05/2016 at 00:18:08
Barkley is a very frustrating player to watch but is definitely not average. Some of the comments on here make me laugh. The stick the young lad gets is disgraceful.
Andrew James
30 Posted 04/05/2016 at 00:32:29
Yeah he is awful.

Beat about five players on Saturday who couldn't stop him before shooting wrong.

Terrible player.

He plays in one of the hardest positions going and just came second highest scorer in a team which is poor thanks to our manager.

I've read some BS on this site but to hear the above is ridiculous.

You all used to revere Cahill and Arteta. Guess what...young Ross just outscored their average goal hauls. Yeah but he is shite.


He is awesome and still learning.

Anthony Dwyer
31 Posted 04/05/2016 at 01:05:28
I love Ross, he's one of our own, and he's got tonnes of ability.

That said, I don't feel he has the balls to reach out and take his spot as a main player for England.

He certainly has more ability than most of England's midfield players, but Henderson, Milner and even Lallana have the bottle to assert themselves on the games, ultimately forcing Roy to pick them.

Ross needs a stronger mentality, he needs to become fitter and he has to prove that he himself truly believes he has what it takes to run the England team, rather than just being happy being a part of the squad.

Sean McCarthy
32 Posted 04/05/2016 at 01:41:14
Andrew #30.... He is awesome and still learning

You watching the same player as me?? The one I see looks overweight, can't tackle, can't head, doesn't chase back, never looks up, can't pass, invariably makes wrong decision and can't beat the first man from a dead ball. At his age our old friend Steven Gerrard was running games and scoring spectacular goals on a regular basis.

He's no better than Rodwell was. If any mug offers £30m in the summer we should bite their hands off!!!!

I hope he goes the Euros as he might lean a few things from watching Dele Alli at close quarters. A player 3 years YOUNGER!!!

Mark Andersson
33 Posted 04/05/2016 at 02:21:59
Some harsh comments for a player who is one of us.

Ross could be great but has lost confidence playing in a shit loosing team. Not helped by disgruntled fan

He is a confidence player needs to be loved. Martinez has missed managed the whole squad. Personally I think Ross would be better off playing for city or Chelsea.

Mick Davies
34 Posted 04/05/2016 at 03:06:52
Barkley looking ahead to Euro2016'
Nice for him . . . 10's of thousands of supporters were looking ahead to this season in August
Phil Walling
35 Posted 04/05/2016 at 06:08:59
Perhaps Hodgson can do more for Ross by way of improving his decision making skills about every aspect of his game than the two Ms have managed.I somehow doubt it.

Those who descibe him as ' glorious' in the present stage of his development are ignoring the inherent qualities which set the likes of Gasser, Gerard, Lampard and Alli apart. And those don't include bodybuilding !

Darren Hind
36 Posted 04/05/2016 at 06:36:39
You'll be amazed how the other players getting forward to give him options will improve Ross's decision making.

He is a brilliant talent who has spent much of the last two seasons being expected to be the sole creator in a team where possession is king, movement is none existent.
Unlike Lukaku, people like Wellbeck, Kane and Vardy will ALWAYS be up for it and he wont have to play with 8 players who barely venture over the half way line.

I'm no England fan, but I'm looking forward to seeing our two much maligned youngsters against the best

Then we can satisfy the philistines by flogging them for top dollar and bringing in a big lump to play central defence and another water carrier to replace Ross

Sam Hoare
37 Posted 04/05/2016 at 07:07:41
'He's no better than Rodwell was.'


His form has dipped these last few months but still has more assists/goals than most AMCs except Mahrez, Payet, Alli.

Could do with being a bit fitter and may not be 'world class' but this lad is already a very good player and one of our own. He's still very young too and needs the right coaching to push him forward.

Jim Bennings
39 Posted 04/05/2016 at 08:10:53
There's maybe an argument for two sides of the story with Barkley.

On one hand people keep blaming his demise in form and fitness on Martinez.
Maybe that carries some truth but I'm looking at the bigger picture more.

How many other players that have been big players in the past have still flourished playing for bad managers?

You'll find there is quite a few

I go back to a 18 year old Wayne Rooney who was a shining beacon of light in one of our worst ever season's in 2003/04, he was the only player who shone that season and was a leader of men despite playing amongst dross.

Many other players are a prime example just look at the likes of Gerrard across the park when he's played in average Liverpool teams under mismanagement, he's still took the game by the scruff or going back a few years it didn't stop Matthew Le Tissier producing outstanding moments in a poor Southampton team.

Only time will tell whether it's down to management with Barkley but whoever comes in needs to get hold of him and drastically improve his spacial awareness.

I don't think your ever going to turn him into a heart on the sleeve player that gets stuck in winning tackles and headers, that's just his personality, it comes over as lazy but that's just his demeanour.

What we need is get him trimmer, fitter and get him more intelligence on the ball because at times he's like the kid at school who always thought he was better than everyone else and doesn't pass the ball and I've witnessed this in Ross even when he's had good options in front of him so we can't keep blaming a lack of movement from others, that's an easy way out.

I think he has talent Barkley but he's 23 this year, I don't always see a great football brain there, hopefully if a new manager comes in he'll work on this and make certain it improves no end.

At the moment there's many players that don't get Barkley's hype but are well ahead of him, the lad Mane at Southampton for one and even Mark Noble at West Ham.

Tony Hill
40 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:01:42
Wonderful player, fragile confidence, crap coaching.
Paul Cherrington
41 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:01:54
People need to lay off Ross – he's not perfect by any means and has areas he needs to improve on but he is a very good player. The problem with him at the moment is the problem with the whole team – namely, Roberto Martinez.

I think he is being confused and weighed down with too much information prior to games by our 'manager'. He is one of those players you need to let play his instinctive game and build the team around to suit that.

I'm not saying this means he should be allowed to stand around and do nothing off the ball, of course... but again, I really do get the impression he's been told to do that and it's okay by Martinez.

He seems to play much better for England when I watch them – which tells you something is up with what's happening at Goodison.

Tony Abrahams
42 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:08:16
I agree with a lot of your post ,Darren 36, but I don't think Ross, will really improve until he decides he wants to be the boss!

Can't believe that people were saying he had to be consoled by Jagielk at Wembley though? It looked to me that he just happened to be the player in from of our skipper, in the tunnel, and Jags, was getting ready to bounce into the changies, to finally give it to the manager.

I might be wrong but that was some transformation in the second half against Man Utd, once we changed our tactics, and decided to have a really good go. To become the player we hope Barkley can be, he's got to start doing the same thing.

Believe you're the best, Ross, and start having a proper go; otherwise, you're best telling Hodgson you would sooner just go on holiday with your mates and watch it on the telly!

Si Turner
43 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:12:42
Why is it that fans rip an arse out of Ross at every opportunity but don't seem to comment on the form of others who have underperformed like Coleman, Stones, McCarthy?

Ross is playing in the hardest position on the pitch and has only scored 2 less goals and assisted 3 less than Alli who has played in a team playing better and scoring more goals.

The same fans who rip Ross would kick off if Big Bill sold him...

I am waiting to see what a different coach can bring out of Ross next season because Martinez has majorly restricted his game and I think there is a lot more improvement in him yet.

Ste Byn
44 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:15:21
Dave Lynch (#20), I totally agree. People got wrapped up in the hype with this kid, really want to believe he is the next best thing. I've kept my eye on him from day one and never been impressed.

Yes, he has got goals this season, that's down to the position he's playing and the fact he has got one hell of a shot on him. He does show some skills now and then, but he has played football since he was a dot at Everton so I would expect something out of him.

Comments used to come out of Everton that he was amazing in training; well, think of them fellas that can do everything with a football in keep-ups, flick it here, there everywhere and look amazing. Put them on a football pitch and they can't do shit.

Jim Bennings
45 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:19:49

Good point, they've all underperformed not just Barkley.

This is why I don't buy into best squad for 30 years rubbish, they are all overrated in my opinion but are hiding behind the fact we have a poor manager.

I will be interested to see what happens once a new manager is in place, people predict a dramatic turnaround in fortunes but I'm not so sure to be honest.

Don Alexander
46 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:30:31
I don't know what it is with Ross either. He's no right to be still considered "promising" at his age but for all the excitement that he sometimes generates when running with the ball he regularly seems to end up in blind alleys, negating the panic he's just caused to the opposition. He fizzles out way too frequently.

Just why he and Lukaku are excused boots when it comes to tackling back is something I'll never get my head around either.

Oh for a coach who can coach!

Ian Riley
47 Posted 04/05/2016 at 09:31:11
Take the sqaud as a whole! Are any of our players improving? I would struggle to pick one for player of the season. Barkley has taken the flack because he is one of our own. The England manager appears to get more out of him than Martinez. Let's look at the bigger picture. Players at Everton are not developing under our coaches.

Who goes?

Iain Latchford
48 Posted 04/05/2016 at 10:08:57
There's definitely a great player in there, but it does seem to be that he isn't being developed in the way he should be.

I thought in he looked woefully out of shape in the semi final. He hardly moved in the first half and looked extremely sluggish for a lad of his age. When you also consider things like Deulofeu only being able to last 60 minutes in a match, I'm concerned that the conditioning side of our training is not up to scratch.

Get them running up and down some sand dunes!!

Ernie Baywood
49 Posted 04/05/2016 at 10:48:55
Don #46 - the way we setup, all there is in front of him is blind alleys.
Damian Wilde
50 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:02:01
Ross is another Rodwell. In about four years he'll be playing for a Sunderland/similar type club.
James Stewart
51 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:17:02
Shame on you Damian and Jim, the constant stick Barkley gets on here is ridiculous. He's a local lad, cost us nothing, plays in a shit side and currently has:

Barkley – 12 goals /8 assists.

For Comparison:

Mane – 14 Goals/ 6 assists
Payet –12 goals / 10 assists
Coutinho – 12 goals / 6 assists
Noble – 7 Goals/ 4 assists

We have many problems, Barkley is not one of them. I find it disgusting the stick he gets from his own fans. One of the few Everton players who can hold his head up after this season.

Ian Tunstead
52 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:28:10
Damian, 50. You could be right but a lot has to do with who the manager is. A good manager will get the best out of his players by giving them encouragement and confidence but also giving them a kick up the backside when needed. Granted, Ross has scored a few goals this season but the amount of times he has scuffed shots or put it into row z or delayed his shot and missed an opportunity is very frustrating. Although is much easier to score goals when you have no defensive responsibilities.

A good manager would drop Barkley and advise him that if he wants to get back in the team suggest to him he should stay longer after practice like top players such as Ronaldo and Lampard would do practicing their shooting long after everyone had left.

I look at Spurs and think this time last year Stones was a head of Eric Dier, Barkley was a head of Ali and Lukaku was a head of Kane but our manager is taking our players backwards and their manager is turning his into top players.

As for Rodwell, I always thought he was massively over rated. When he first came into the team people were comparing him to Beckenbauer and Rio Ferdinand. I said at the time he would be lucky to be the next Anton Ferdinand and said he would more likely have a similar career to someone like Jermaine Jenas. But under a decent manager Rodwell was at least playing first team football and playing to his strengths which always gave him a chance of breaking into the International set up and raise his profile.

Geoff Risebrow
53 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:40:48
Spot on James Stewart. Damien and Jim's comments are incredibly embarrassing and totally inaccurate. 'He will end up like Rodwell in 4 years', you couldn't make it up! Mark Noble better than Barkley! That's like saying Ronnie Rosenthal is better than Peter Beardsley!
Iain Latchford
54 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:50:50
Think how good he could be if he was fit.
Iain Latchford
56 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:53:57
This is top ten hardest working player in the EPL (Feb 2016)

Andrew Surman, Bournemouth - 303.85km (188.80m)
Gareth Barry, Everton - 297.64km (184.94m)
Craig Dawson, West Bromwich Albion - 278.57km (173.09m)
Etienne Capoue, Watford - 278.43km (173.00m)
Darren Fletcher, West Bromwich Albion - 271.46km (168.67m)
Mark Noble, West Ham United - 271.31km (168.58m)
Matt Ritchie, Bournemouth - 268.71km (166.96m)
Yann M'Vila, Sunderland - 268.59km (166.89m)
Dan Gosling, Bournemouth - 267.91km (166.47m)
Ross Barkley, Everton - 267.31km (166.09m)

I'll get my coat.....

Brent Stephens
57 Posted 04/05/2016 at 11:59:19
James #51. Your goals / assists stats are a good reminder to people (like me) who get on Ross's back for being lazy.

I have to say I just love the way this guy can float past a couple of opponents, and the way he can shoot with either foot. I guess it's just the "if only" – if only he'd also keep goal-side of the man he's picking up, rather than just let the guy amble past him in second gear; he doesn't need to tackle just jockey.

To end on a positive note, if he can develop his reading of the game and decision-making, then what a diamond.

Brent Stephens
58 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:05:12
Ian (#56), – well that stat on Ross for hard-working puts me in my place. I didn't realise that he's in the top 10. But then didn't Fat Les get into the top 10 with Vindaloo?
Jim Bennings
59 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:05:43

Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

I never directly criticized Barkley, I'm simply saying he needs to improve on lots of things.

He's scored more goals this season but ask yourself what's he done since early December apart from score a couple of pens against Newcastle??
His form hasn't been good enough.

He's got potential but he needs to take responsibility more and can't keep blaming the managers style for all of it, some of it yes but he needs to be big enough to say "enough is enough, I'm going to dictate this game myself and lead from the front".

Certain players grow bigger when given the responsibility of playing in a poor team and it brings the best out of them, others tend to go missing for months like Barkley and Lukaku.

Shane Corcoran
60 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:06:44
Stat attack on ToffeeWeb.... again.

He scores goals and makes assists you say... well then surely that's countered by his lack of workrate. What, he's the tenth hardest working player by distance covered in the Premier League?

Well I'm actually shocked if that's correct. I wonder how those stats work. I mean when Ross is jogging on the spot when an opponent is two metres away from him do those steps get included?

Iain Latchford
61 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:39:10
Brent, I'm not sure how those stats are calculated, but you could probably just jog about for 90 mins and cover a fair bit of distance. In addition (Noble apart) all of the players play for teams in the bottom half of the table. Looks like Howe certainly gets his team working hard though. Interesting how everyone always mentions Leicester's work ethic, when they have no players in that list.
Phil Sammon
62 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:46:21
If those stats are for the duration of February is there a chance some teams played more than others?

I'm not convinced either way.

Jim Hardin
63 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:47:41
Amazing to me how much criticism Barkley gets on here. He has good stats and attacks into the box. He does make good passes and doesn't lose the ball any more than DelBoy does. In a proper team I think Ross would be a standout and would stop the double teaming of Lukaku. He has looked pretty good in the England side when played with other players and in a system that allows him to play to his own strengths.

Odd that Barkley is 22 and cannot make mistakes but another 21 year old (22 this month) on here gets excused for everything because he is "young" and "learning." Seems to me such logic should apply to attacking mids also or are they just minted as is?

Give the lad a break. Of all the players other than perhaps Baines, he seems to be the player who takes being a Toffee the most to heart.

Iain Latchford
64 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:52:20
Phil, I think the stats are up until February 2016, rather than February alone. 166 miles in one month would be impressive.
Peter Gorman
65 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:59:15
Jim, there is no doubt from me that Barkley is a special talent; he can do things with the ball few others can, not even Del boy. At his best he is fantastic.

But, to put it mildly, his 'football intelligence' is not all that high (based on numerous observations - he often fails to spot or doesn't choose the best option) and his character also seems a bit lacking.

People have gone on at length about Martinez driving all the confidence out of him but the best players are not so fair-weather. That is essentially the margin we are looking at; if the lad can not self-motivate, if he suffers from crippled confidence, then he will never really be a top player, just a good one, which is still ok in my book but nothing too much to write home about.

I would never advocate giving him grief from the stands but I would advocate not going on at length about what a brilliant player he is. He isn't, and on the evidence will probably never be. Would love to be proved wrong.

Patrick Murphy
66 Posted 04/05/2016 at 12:59:38
Barkely shouldn't be relying on stats to convince us that's he's a good player, his natural abilities should do that for us. However, as some have mentioned above, he is a confidence player and needs to be playing in a side that is doing well.

Are Everton failing due to Ross's form or is it the other way about? I tend to believe that his team-mates have let him down big time, the manager, has, like he has done with so many of our talented players hung him out to dry. Stones is another confidence player who also hasn't lived up to our great expectations this season, and he has had his head turned by transfer speculation.

Purely on ability these two players given an even break will play for England for many many years and one if not both of them will if they leave Everton, will probably collect many medals for their new clubs. I don't want to see either of them in any shirt other than the Royal Blue of Everton or their national jerseys.

The club won't move forward if it allows young talent to leave and join other clubs. Some fans seem to yearn for players who will run around a lot and get stuck in at every opportunity, we do need those sorts of players in the team but not at the expense of the more talented players. The McCarthy's, Besic', Barry type of player have their roles and they, Barry apart haven't pulled up any trees this season, in fact how many players in the current squad can say they have given everything for the cause?

I'm hoping that a new manager will look at the squad, rid us of those players that aren't good enough to be here and keep those players which he can build a team around, Stones and Ross are both players who meet the latter criteria and any talk of taking the money and running should be given short shrift. Lukaku I have my doubts about purely because he doesn't seem to be a team player but if a new boss thinks he is worth keeping I wouldn't argue.

If Roberto stays in charge I would hazard a guess that two if not all three of our star players will leave and that really doesn't bear thinking about no matter how much money Mr Moshiri is willing to invest in the club.

Craig Walker
67 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:00:23
I'd love Ross to succeed at Everton but I'm pretty confident that it won't happen. He's had great games in an Everton shirt but not often enough.

He's consistently too greedy. If there's a break on goal and he has the ball he chooses the wrong option every time. When he needs to keep the ball down, he blazes over the bar. When he needs to lift it, he hits a daisy cutter. He goes missing in the big games too often.

People say that he's young, he's still learning and that he's very much a confidence player. He's not 16. If you look at the likes of Rooney, Gerrard, Lampard, Scholes, they were dictating games at the same age.

I agree that he's offered more than a lot of players this season but he's not as good as he thinks he is. I thought he was the worst player on the pitch in the semi-final.

Thomas Lennon
68 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:07:45
Seeing as the hardest working player (George Boyd) in PL 2014-15 during the game ran 12km on average, the figures given above (300km) cannot refer to distance run during game time in the month of February, must be totals for the season.

For comparison a 53 year old man (me) can run 10km in under an hour - but of course I am not intermittently standing still then sprinting flat out etc. These figures might mean more in terms of working hard if we could see a measure of speed & acceleration (i.e. quality) rather than just quantity.

Paul English
69 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:21:03
"We've got a diamond in Ross Barkley, he plays alongside James McCarthy" fuckin what !!!!!!
Iain Latchford
70 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:31:35
Personally I don't think footballers are anywhere near as fit as other "elite" athletes. Look at boxers, cyclists, runners, swimmers etc. They're up at the crack of dawn putting the miles in, or in the gym most of the day. It's total dedication. Footballers seem to pop into training for a couple of hours, jump over some little hurdles, stand about, then go home.

As professional athletes, running 12 km in 90 mins shouldn't be hard, whatever they do it.

(13.1 miles in 1 hr 44 mins, November 2014.)

Tom Bowers
71 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:31:47
A lot of good posts regarding Barks and Rom.

Ross's form fell off significantly over the last few months but before that his support to Rom was very effective. The lad has great talent but something happened to his attitude and concentration. He also seemed to have gained weight which slowed him a little.

This could be due to problems with Martinez regarding motivation but then again it may just be the lad himself. I cannot see him getting much playing time with Hodgson and his RS picks especially as he loves Sterling who really is crap.

Rom will always score goals but is so different to Vardy, Kane and Aguerro who are all much more mobile and do more off the ball.

Not sure what the intention is for next season because if Rom goes then Niasse would seem to be the replacement although not yet been able to prove himself. Certainly the money from Rom could be used to buy a speedy support striker as what we have doesn't fill the bill.

Damian Wilde
72 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:41:59
I don't think anybidy is saying he can't play well, he can pass well, score goals, etc. Does this excuse not trying to win the ball and lazily trotting about? Or frequently lising the ball?

Also, some people need to calm down, we're not giving him 'stick', just giving our opinion, which happens to differ from others.

Maybe we're frustrated because he could be/do better.

Paul English
73 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:45:03
Barkley is so unfit, overweight, can't tackle, can't head; he lacks aggression, lazy, doesn't score enough, or make enough goals, loses possession......

Other than all that, he's not a bad player!!!!!

James Marshall
74 Posted 04/05/2016 at 13:58:59
I agree with Dave@11 - Barkley has his moments, but he doesn't dominate games and is way too inconsistent to be trusted in a big tournament. Mistakes are punished, and we've all seen it with Ross this season. He also doesn't work hard enough, and if you make mistakes or don't work hard at an International tournament, then you're a liability.

He gets away with it over a season at club level. I'd take him but start him? Nah.

Phil Walling
75 Posted 04/05/2016 at 14:03:00
It must be Boredom Week on ToffeeWeb. I've noticed before that – whenever we've 'over-vented our spleen' on Martinez and Kenwright, hastened the departure of Stones and Lukaku, succeeded in getting Howard sent back to the USA, and competed with each other to write off the likes of Niasse – it's always poor old Ross who gets put up to cop the flak!

I can't recall how many times we've argued over his merits and weaknesses – I know I've initiated two threads on the subject that never reached any useful conclusion – but I've had a fit of conscience and just wanted the lad to know that it's because we all want him to succeed so much that his career merits so much debate.

In all truth, he's a bloody good player and one who I am sure will benefit from the forthcoming European Competition. Go show 'em, Ross!

Mick Barrett
76 Posted 04/05/2016 at 14:07:20
He needs to start putting a shift in fit us before he starts thinking about the Euros...
Brian Keenan
77 Posted 04/05/2016 at 14:40:52
I think Mr. Barkley would have been a better Chef than a footballer. He could indeed make me a nice salad of course.
Jay Wood
78 Posted 04/05/2016 at 15:22:19
Shane @ 60

"Stat attack on ToffeeWeb.... again."

Like it or not Shane, but stats can inform a debate and opinion.

Can we put our trust in only qualitative data, that is, the singular opinions of posters such as these offerings?

Craig Walker @ 67: "He's consistently too greedy. If there's a break on goal and he has the ball he chooses the wrong option every time. When he needs to keep the ball down, he blazes over the bar. When he needs to lift it, he hits a daisy cutter. He goes missing in the big games too often."

Paul English @ 73: "Barkley is so unfit, overweight, can't tackle, can't head; he lacks aggression, lazy, doesn't score enough, or make enough goals, loses possession. Other than all that, he's not a bad player!!!!!"

Or is it fair to balance such an extreme evaluation with quantitative data as some have posted here, which makes a nonsense of such views?

I'm not denying people's right to have contrary opinions, but if those opinions can be challenged and shown to be flawed by hard data, then give me a 'stat attack' every day of the week.

Peter Gorman
79 Posted 04/05/2016 at 16:04:24
Jay, definitely agree stats can inform a debate but they should never dictate it.

What is the old adage about lies, damn lies and statistics?

According to stats; wee little Leon Britton of Swansea was once the finest passer of a football the world ever did see. I watched him shortly after the news broke and his contribution to the game was minimal for all his great stats.

Paul English
80 Posted 04/05/2016 at 16:25:35
Jay@ 78. For all I said about Barkley...., a top class coach would work wonders for him, I'm sure!
Jay Wood
81 Posted 04/05/2016 at 16:42:30
Peter @ 79 and Paul @ 80

Agree with you both.

My point is, certainly in regard to assessing a footballer, qualitative data is extremely subjective and oft times determined by the preconceptions some have of particular players.

In such cases, they are only determined to see the bad in a player and so remain blind to his better attributes.

As Paul says, we could better judge a good number of our younger players under the guiding hand of a different manager.

Personally, I see plenty (and then some!) in the likes of Stones, Barkley, Deulofeu and Lukaku who, within a better set up, would transform us into a ... truly 'phenomenal' team.

Craig Walker
82 Posted 04/05/2016 at 16:54:03
Jay (#78),

I can't quantify how many times I've been frustrated with Ross because he's chosen the wrong option, e.g. he breaks with the ball and has a player to his left and right but he gives it to the wrong one, or when he's tried to beat a player when there was a pass on, or when he's passed it sideways when he should have beaten a player, or when he's received the ball and should be turning but passes it straight back to where it came from, or when he's shot when there were better placed team mates or when he's passed when he should have shot.

If you haven't seen this happen an awful lot then you need to get your head up from the facts and figures page in the matchday programme and take note.

Frank Thomas
83 Posted 04/05/2016 at 17:08:24
One of Ross's many strengths is the ability to make world class defence splitting and consequently goal making passes across the park very similar to Steven Gerrard.

To fulfil his potential he has to conquer is his own desire. He wants to score goals and play in the number 10 role. Good?

We saw it last week the pass was on for Niasse simple tap forward but Ross kept it and had three players around him when he tried a shot. He did not score If you look at the MotD replay from behind the goal he could not have scored the goal was completely covered. The defenders are catching on to his cross box runs. The 2nd goal came because he actually passed it at the end of a similar run.

Ironically in his 1st season with Roberto he was spraying passes around like Kante (Leicester) and so many Everton players were scoring that defenders were trying to mark others and leaving gaps for Ross to score.

For the last two years Ross's average position has moved closer and closer to the goal. yes he is scoring more goals but leaving greater gaps. In the Southampton away game we saw Ross passing and running from the centre of the park this is were he can make the greatest impact.

If he leaves Everton that is where any manager will order him to stay for the majority of his playing time.

Jay Wood
84 Posted 04/05/2016 at 17:12:21
Craig @ 82. Read my post @ 81.

I've seen all you mention too, Craig. I've also lost count of the number of times I've thrown my hands in the air and said "FFS Ross!"

But there are also many more times I have purred with pleasure at some of his play.

I used your post @ 67 as an extreme example of how folk like yourself exaggerate the 'bad' of Ross to confirm your own prejudice against him.

When someone says (as you did) "If there's a break on goal and he has the ball he chooses the wrong option every time. When he needs to keep the ball down, he blazes over the bar. When he needs to lift it, he hits a daisy cutter", a person might conclude "strewth! he must be crap!"

But when the stats place him up there with his peers with 12 goals and 8 assists (never mind the evidence of my own eyes) ... well, against your quoted comments, you're clearly talking bollocks, Craig.

Oh! And FYI when watching Everton, I'm 100% focussed on the game, with no time or inclination to post on here or the live forum, or bury my head in data sites or the match day program.

But thanks for your concern and advice on that front. Much appreciated.

Tom Bowers
85 Posted 04/05/2016 at 17:19:54
Decision-making has been poor and I thought it would have improved this season but it hasn't and the same can be said for others such as Deulofeu. These players although young should have moved to the next level and it appears the right coaching has not been applied in some areas.

Lennon appeared rejuvenated for a while but then seemed to be chasing shadows and running into people. Mirallas has been nothing like his old self and, apart from his goal last weekend, Cleverley runs a lot but achieves little.

As I indicated earlier some of this can be laid squarely at RM'S feet as it just seemed he was unable to raise the intensity levels when it mattered in so many games.

Dave Ganley
86 Posted 04/05/2016 at 18:32:29
John... he probably has the build to audition for fightclub although, to be fair to Ross, I am not sure hes in Bitch tits Bobs league... maybe needs few more visits to Greggs for some lardy pasties before hes ready to compete in the saggy moob category.
Tony Kost
87 Posted 04/05/2016 at 18:43:36
He should be very fit for the Euros – given that he has taken things so easy for the last few months. I hope he doesn't expect to be matchfit!

He shouldn't be so sure he's going given his current club form.

Si Turner
88 Posted 04/05/2016 at 18:48:54
I will take stats over an over exaggerated criticism anyday just like I would over exaggerated hype.

Anyone who honestly believes that Barkley is average needs to give their head a wobble.

Darren Hind
89 Posted 04/05/2016 at 19:02:15
I think people who follow the game closely will Know Ross will make mistakes before a ball is kicked. He is a creator and a lot of his work requires lesser players to be on the same wave length. most of the time ours are not.

Those who think blaming lack of movement is an "easy way out" are either deaf dumb, blind or don't watch Everton. The way we line up, our system, does not lend itself to options we are rigid and The options are as limited as it gets.
The more limited the options, the easier it is for the opposition to nullify his game.

BTW, "Get him more intelligence on the ball"? if ToffeeWeb have a dumbest statement of the year award . . .

Tony A

I don't think he has it in him to be the boss Mate. He is not a Keane or a Souness. Boss's are good with or without the ball, but when Ross doesn't have it, he may as well not be on the pitch.

Jamie Barlow
90 Posted 04/05/2016 at 19:23:56
I've no problem with Ross when we have the ball. With better coaching and better fitness he will be a great player. When we don't have the ball, I'm the total opposite. I can't stand watching him. That's probably where the stats about the distance covered comes from. Running away from whoever has the ball on the opposite team.
Damian Wilde
91 Posted 04/05/2016 at 19:29:59
All these 'great' players and we've done poorly. I see Rom has netted, is it 25? So some can still do fairly well even with a shit manager. Could someone tell me the great talent that is Ross, when he last hsd a 'superp game'?
Tony Kost
92 Posted 04/05/2016 at 19:51:23
Si Turner @81, I agree – the last thing that Ross is, is average – far from it. But his current form isn't good enough for EFC at the moment – never mind England.
Ernie Baywood
93 Posted 04/05/2016 at 22:20:58
I think the last few months have clouded opinions. In the first half of the season I was in awe of Ross (though many disagreed). He was brilliant. In the second half of the season the team collectively fell apart.

Still a diamond. Just needs a manager to help him shine.

Peter Gorman
94 Posted 04/05/2016 at 22:21:11
16 Dec 2014 - "Roberto Martinez hailed Ross Barkley as 'exceptional' after the England midfielder's man-of-the-match performance inspired Everton to victory. Barkley set Everton on their way to a 3-1 win over Queens Park Rangers with a stunning goal and showed why his manager believes he can one day become England' s answer to Michael Ballack."

Praise indeed from our manager. But this is the same Michael Ballack who got booked in the 2002 World Cup semi-final and, knowing he would miss the game in any event, shortly afterwards scored the goal that sent Germany through. In fact, he honestly carried that team throughout the tournament.

I wish it were true but I can not see any of Ballack's drive and determination in young Ross. It is frankly insulting to Ballack to make the comparison but since when has Martinez let truth get in the way of a good yarn.

To reiterate my point earlier; Ross is a lovely player on his day, one of our own and definitely a bit unique. But like all the players this season, his character has been found massively wanting. We could do without the hyperbole.

If this club ever truly aspires to be successful; to win titles and get beyond semis, then it isn't Barkleys at all we need but more Ballacks.

Ray Robinson
95 Posted 04/05/2016 at 22:30:02
Peter #94. We don't need more Ballacks. Martinez spouts enough already!
Laurie Hartley
96 Posted 04/05/2016 at 22:43:44
Ian's stats are surprising for other reasons than Ross being in the top ten:

Not one player from Leicester. That would surprise many. Only one player from the top ten clubs – Noble of West Ham.

Gareth Barry – Our oldest player is the hardest working in the team and 2nd in the Premier League. Does this mean that we are not letting the ball do the work? Why isn't McCarthy in the list? I find it very confusing.

His comments about John Stones's leadership qualities are for me very significant.

As far Barkley and his weight. Harold (God rest him) pointed out earlier in the year that both Browning and Besic had put a lot of muscle on from work in the gym and suggested that this had slowed them down. It looks like that could be the case with Ross Barkley. I want the lad back that used to burst out of our half and run at opposing defences.

Ian Riley
97 Posted 04/05/2016 at 23:21:00
Two options here for the development of our younger players:

1) The club sell Barkley, Lukaku, and Stones and we watch their development on match of the day. Oh yes, the club make a good sum of money.

2) Say goodbye to Roberto and his fantastic coaches. Hire a manager whom will develop the young players.

Barkley is not fulfilling his potential at present. Let's hope the club can see it before he wants to move on. The manager has failed to leave him on the bench and take him out of the firing line. He is not beyond being dropped for playing poor or a lack of confidence.

Our expectations are way of track with the way the team have played this season.

Dan Davies
98 Posted 04/05/2016 at 23:56:08
With the right manager I think the whole squad would be transformed. Barkley this, Stones that, Deulofeu, etc, etc.

I believe with a fresh approach from a different manager the likes of Barkley, Stones, if they stay with us could, kick on big time and be not just the future of EFC but two of the best English players in the Premier League.

To write them off now under Martinez is very short sighted – but hey, that's just my opinion.

Paul Cherrington
99 Posted 05/05/2016 at 08:59:40
For me Barkley is a player in the Pirlo mould in terms of how he plays and where he should play. I think he needs to be in a 3 man midfield where the other two do the running for him and then give him the ball in space to do his thing (as well as being prepared to cover if it doesn't come off).

This is what I mean about building the team around him. this set up would bring the best out of him. don't remember many people moaning about Pirlos lack of tackling or tracking back with that set up as it made up for that.

I read an interview with Pirlo where he described himself as a wandering gypsy on the football pitch. By that he meant he moved around all the time just trying to find a bit of space to play in and pick a pass. I think playing him like Pirlo in that deep lying role would enable him to do that more than where he is playing at the min.

Tony Abrahams
100 Posted 05/05/2016 at 10:12:58
I hear my dad say the same thing about Barkley after every home game Darren, and can't believe the manager is prepared to let it happen.

People go on about stats, I often wonder which is more valuable, talent or belief? Barkley possesses one, but not the other. Unless he finds it, It will continue to hold him back, just as much as Everton's tactics do at the minute.

Shane Corcoran
101 Posted 05/05/2016 at 11:11:03
Jay #78, stats can be used in a conversation no argument. But these stats have been stated and left there for people to wonder what has been omitted, in which case they are useless.

In all my days of playing football, I've never received a yellow card. That is all.

Dave Ganley
102 Posted 05/05/2016 at 12:31:42
Comments supporting Barkley and suggesting he is this amazing talent typify we are where we are. He has, along with many others at the club, put in sub standard performances for the best part of 2 years. Once in a blue moon he does something special then folds back into his shell and just stands in, well space,marking no ine and bothering no one.

Most of the Everton players do nothing. They are not special, they are not a team and they do not perform. This last 2 years has been some of the worst football witnessed on a sustained basis for many a year. Martinez can take a huge slice of the responsibility but so can the players.

They are not the best for a generation, they are not fit to lace the boots of the mid 80s team much less the Holy Trinity. They are average players who rightly should be talked about in the same breath of the mid 90s teams. Their record is similar to that. No heart, no chemistry, no putting the fans before personal aims, very little effort and shit football.

You can throw all the stats you like at this, but the bottom line is we have a shit football team and the likes of Barkley is part of that shit football team. Do you think any top club would put up with the lazy attitudes displayed by our players? No me either. The longer we apologise and make excuses for shit performances the longer they will keep happening.

Just saying Barkley is one of us is rubbish too. If he really was one of us he would know how much we actually hurt but these insipid performances, especially at the khazi across the park. Instead we get the same shite and complete lack of effort again and again. If these players are really so good then they're doing precious little to convince me and many others.

The table doesn't lie and it says we are.mediocre at best. Probably about right. Good job there is the likes of Villa Sunderland and the Geordies in this league or we would have been up the proverbial creek without said paddle. That's how good our players are!!

Dave Lynch
103 Posted 05/05/2016 at 12:46:09
Dave Ganley.

A shining light in world of apology and blind ignorance.

Gavin Johnson
104 Posted 05/05/2016 at 12:54:07
I thought Barkley deserved the plaudits he received earlier in the season, to score 11 goals from midfield mean you're doing some things right. Some people were still moaning about him then, but you can't please everyone.

This all said, he's not been playing particularly well for a couple of months now. Too many times he runs down blind alleys. Even in this form, he looks about the only player along with Lennon capable of doing anything in this pedestrian Everton team. It says a lot about where we are in the league and the changes we need to make this summer.

Ray Robinson
105 Posted 05/05/2016 at 13:06:45
I saw recently some stats that confirmed that Leon Britton of Swansea was the best passer of the ball in the Premiership. Along with Scott Parker, Ray Wilkins, Joe Allen and countless others who merely passed / pass the ball sideways or backwards 5 yards, it proves nothing – other than statistics without context prove absolutely nothing.
Paul Cherrington
106 Posted 05/05/2016 at 15:17:16
Jesus, when will people stop having a go at the players as if it's all their fault? It's clear as day that they are playing under and to the manager's instructions. Or is it mere chance that every single one of them looks unfit, uninterested and disorganised?

Yes Ross and the others could ignore him and play their natural game but then they would probably be out of the team and a job. How long would you last in your own job if you chose to ignore express directions/instructions from your line manager and do it your own way?

Like it or not, when your boss tells you to do it that way you have to do it. Most of our players will look rubbish while this clown is in charge. I suspect Ross would love nothing more than to put his foot in a bit but has been told not too.

Craig Walker
107 Posted 05/05/2016 at 16:05:44
Joe "the Welsh Xavi" Allen had the best stats in Europe for pass completion when the RS signed him. So what? He gives the ball to the nearest man. My mum can play like that. Doesn't make him a good player.

What are Ross's stats like against the top teams? How many winning goals has he got when it's mattered? How many derby goals or assists for example? It's one thing converting two penalties against Newcastle...

Phil Chatterley
108 Posted 06/05/2016 at 02:17:46
Wake up blues .He ìs not good enough.
Peter Roberts
109 Posted 07/05/2016 at 12:57:32
Two great feet, great ability running with the ball, has flair. He just needs to shed a few kilos and get mentored and managed properly. Very talented player.

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