By support

9th Apr, 2017 | 7:35pm

Koeman delivers ultimatum to Everton 23-year-old, fans will be concerned

By Matt Farr

Everton manager Ronald Koeman has revealed his gameplan to put an end to the uncertainty regarding the future of midfield star Ross Barkley this summer.

The 23-year-old is approaching the final year of his contract at Goodison Park, and negotiations over a fresh deal have stalled.

But following Barkley’s man of the match display in Everton’s 4-2 win over Leicester on Sunday, Koeman has revealed the latest on what the future holds for one of his star performers.

As quoted by Telegraph reporter Chris Bascombe on his personal Twitter account, Koeman stated that Barkley would be offered a new deal.

However, the Dutchman was quick to add that if the midfielder declined their new contract offer, he would be sold by the club.

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Everton already face the prospect of losing top goalscorer and talisman Romelu Lukaku this summer after the Belgium international refused to commit his future to the club, and Barkley could be set to follow suit.

It could be argued that Lukaku’s absence would have a more lasting effect on Everton than Barkley, with the England midfield struggling for consistency in recent seasons.

Barkley’s performances this season have been mixed, but in recent weeks he has shown great improvement and established some much-needed consistency in his game.

Fans will definitely not want to see him leave the club in the summer.

He played a starring role in the recent win over Leicester, netting a superb assist for Everton’s second goal, and if he can maintain that level of performance, Everton would love to keep him on board.

Football Insider verdict

The current predicament of Barkley and Everton is one to keep a close eye on over the coming weeks, because it could change at any moment. The long-term future of Barkley ultimately lies in his performances on the pitch. When he is playing at the top of his game, he is a vital asset to Everton, but more often than not, he is not hitting that level. That makes him expendable for the right price, and Koeman’s firm message suggests he will not be afraid to cash-in on him if he doesn’t sign a new deal. There will be no shortage of potential suitors for a player of Barkley’s talents, but he has to do the hard work and fulfil his stuttering potential.

In other Everton transfer news, Matthew Pennington has agreed a new deal with the club.

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