By Danny Wright
Joey Barton has destroyed Ronald Koeman’s decision to sign Cuco Martina for Everton during the summer transfer window.
Martina, 27, arrived at Goodison Park in July on a free transfer from Southampton as the Toffees looked for cover at right-back due to Seamus Coleman’s long-term injury.
The Curacao international had a nightmare of a game when Everton lost 3-0 at the hands of Tottenham on Saturday, sparking criticism from fans and pundits alike.
Now, after Martina has suffered a poor start to life on Merseyside, Barton, 35, has admitted that he is stunned that Everton didn’t decide to instead develop some of the younger full-backs that are making their way out of the academy.
“Well they’ve got a young boy Jonjo Kenny and another kid Callum Connoly, both right-backs who’ve done really well in the England youth sides,” said Barton on TalkSport, as shown on Alan Brazil’s Sports Breakfast’s official Twitter account on Monday morning.
“Instead of putting a second-rate foreigner in, which he [Martina] is. Judging off Saturday you have to say that.
He added: “Give your kids a chance, Everton have got a great academy because they’ve proven, and they will prove, that in time they are more than competent.”
— The Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast (@SportsBreakfast) September 11, 2017
Everton spent big during the summer transfer window making key additions to almost every area of the squad, however they have failed to win since the opening day of the season after Saturday’s loss to Spurs.
Koeman and his men were dealt with a very tough run of fixtures to start their campaign with Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham being their previous three opponents.
However if Everton want to have any chance of breaking into the top six this term, they must begin to start picking up points against these types of sides and Barton’s suggestion is to call on the youngsters to make a difference.
In other Everton news, fans have urged Koeman to promote this attacker after stunning display in Under-23 squad.