Kevin Phillips has heaped praise on Aston Villa midfielder Ross Barkley for his impact at the club this season.

The former Claret and Blue, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, claimed the 26-year-old was “one hell of a player” and was rightly being “talked about again” after an indifferent spell at Chelsea.

Barkley joined Villa on a season-long loan deal in September, leaving Stamford Bridge in search of regular first team football ahead of next summer’s European Championships.

However, he missed out on Gareth Southgate’s most recent England squad with 17-year-old Borussia Dortmund attacker Jude Bellingham selected ahead of him.

In five Premier League appearances this season, Barkley has contributed two goals and one assist.

Phillips is excited by the prospect of Barkley playing in front of a packed Villa Park after an outstanding start to the 2020/21 campaign.

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“Villa are a big club,” he told Football Insider.

“He has not played for the fans there yet but the atmosphere is amazing. It was amazing when I was playing and we weren’t doing so well so you can only imagine what it would be like now with the performances they have had. It is an incredible place to play football.

“It looks like Barkley is playing with freedom and he has great players around him. He has quality, there is no doubting that – one hell of a player.

“People are talking about him again which is great.”  

In other Aston Villa news, Darren Bent confused by prospect of John Terry quitting for West Brom or Derby County.