Ronald Koeman delivers Everton summer transfer pledge
By Matt Farr
Ronald Koeman has insisted that Ross Barkley will not be leaving Everton this summer.
Barkley, 23, has been linked with the exit door at Goodison Park after being on the receiving end of criticism from the Everton boss earlier in the season.
Koeman had grown frustrated at his performances, urging the England midfielder to improve his game and show he was a top player.
But speaking to the Sun, Koeman has insisted that Barkley is going nowhere.
His contract with the Merseyside club will just have a year left to run at the end of the season, and negotiations are yet to begin over an extended deal.
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The lack of movement in negotiations has sparked panic among some groups of Everton fans, but Koeman’s latest declaration has allayed fears that Barkley will be leaving the club.
He told the Sun: “Ross wants to win titles and play Champions League football. But he still has one more year and we keep the best players.
“I didn’t have any comments from his side that he would like to move or will not sign a new contract.”
Koeman had sat down with Barkley during Everton’s Dubai training camp in January to discuss his long term future.
But the talks between the pair were positive, and Koeman is confident that Barkley will remain an Everton player this summer.
Football Insider verdict
Barkley has been inconsistent, but selling him would be the wrong move, as Everton’s loss will inevitably become someone else’s gain. Koeman’s tough love approach will reap rewards in time, but it can be understood why the patience will be tested. Barkley has become an established name in the Everton camp, and a regular first team player, but he is not always living up to his full potential. But Everton’s ambitions of competing regularly for a place in the Premier League’s top four and in Europe will not be achieved if they sell their most talented players.
In other Everton transfer news, this Toffees star is expected to sign a new mega-money deal within the next 48 hours.