Since returning from a double leg break, Ross Barkley has emerged during a pre season of general despondency in the transfer market for the club as a player who could provide an added option to the Blues ranks this campaign. More importantly, his potential could see him long term become a massive player for the club.
Barkley showcased his ability to play centrally between opposition defence and midfield lines against DC United above; cutely finding space to receive a ball from Rodwell before slipping Billy through for the second goal.
The Wavertree born lad is the epitome of the modern day player being comfortable in numerous positions; indeed he played as a forward in Everton’s FA Youth Cup team. Barkley ‘s versatility would make him even more valuable at a club like ours who started fewer players (20) than any other team in the league last season.
In the Villarreal game Barkley was initially deployed as a central midfielder and showed his willingness to get beyond the striker by almost scoring from Baines whipped delivery here.
I would see Barkley playing in one of the wide berths, presumably on the right cutting in as he does in the above screenshot atBremen. In a 4-2-3-1 this would mean Barkley playing in the final third closer to the opposition goal where his passing incision (something we lack) will be really useful.
Clearly at a time when morale amongst fans is low the Barkley hype will grow but I would see Moyes using him sparingly in the opening months of the season, selecting the games he feels Barkley can grow into the team.