Chelsea midfielder Ross Barkley has issued a sly dig at former side Everton after commenting on his improvements since moving to the club, in comments published by The Independent.
The 24-year-old left Goodison Park for Stamford Bridge in January, after rising through the ranks on Merseyside, and initially struggled to establish himself in the Blues’ ranks under Antonio Conte.
Barkley has been issued a new lease of life under Maurizio Sarri this season though and has credited the Italian for helping to coach him, which he says he did not receive much of during his time with Everton.
“Over the years I haven’t really been coached much. When you go through the youth system, you’re always going in to do analysis work, you’re looking at every way of improving and your coaches are always on top of you. And once you go into the first team it can change, because game to game managers are focusing on weekly results, not player development.
That’s just the way it can go. Some players are more fortunate than others to have coaches fully focused on improvement. I believe that if I did have that type of approach from a coach when I was younger then maybe I would have improved a lot more. Where I am right now is where I believe I should be.”
Barkley missed England’s World Cup campaign but is hoping to earn a recall to Gareth Southgate’s side after an increased amount of playing time this season.