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Ross Barkley ? next in line...?

By Denis Byrne :  26/10/2010 :  Comments (13) :
I'm sorry if this has already been covered and I missed it but I'm interested to hear about the latest in a long long long long line of prodigies to emerge from Goodison... I'm wondering when he might make his entrance and how long it is before obscurity prevails. On the other hand... some nice comments about us in the Independent's 'Five young players to watch' (oh god, how many times have we seen this?) ? "4. Ross Barkley; Everton

At Everton they know a good young player when they see one and at the club's academy, Barkley is rated as the next potential first-team recruit to follow in the footsteps of Wayne Rooney and Jack Rodwell.

Still very young ? he only turned 16 last month ? Barkley too plays for the England Under-17s. Primarily a box-to-box midfielder, he has been playing as a forward in Everton's FA Youth Cup team. One of the best young prospects in the country, he scored against Northern Ireland in the Under-16s Victory Shield game in October 2008 when he was still just 14.

He is a big, imposing player but he is also very versatile and, given Everton's record of pushing young players through, it would not come as a complete surprise if he managed to edge his way into first-team contention over the next 12 months.

He comes from the Wavertree district of Liverpool, the latest gem to be unearthed in a city that continually produces great footballers. Everton will want to sign him to a professional contract on his 17th birthday at the end of the year and, if they do end up losing Rodwell in the summer transfer window, then Barkley will be the next to come through.

In the England Under-17s team Everton also have Luke Garbutt, a left-back signed from Leeds United, who has shown great promise and could challenge for a first-team place come the end of this year".

Reader Comments

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Charlie Percival
1   Posted 27/10/2010 at 03:29:15

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Didn't he suffer a double leg fracture the other day on International duty?

Doubt he will ever be the player he could have been now.

Big Shame... Vaughan, Anichebe... (think there's others), now Barkley.
Pat Finegan
2   Posted 27/10/2010 at 03:48:18

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Charlie, I believe it was a double fracture of the tibia and fibula. I'm far from being a medical expert but I'm pretty sure this is an injury which can heal fully, especially at his age. When a tendon or ligament is injured it doesn't always heal fully. Ligaments and tendons are stretched constantly so if they don't heal fully it can be a problem (example: Yakubu.) If a bone doesn't heal, it is likely to break again but the athlete can still perform to the best of their ability. Bones just aren't put under as much stress as ligaments.

A few months ago, I tore my meniscus, partially tore my MCL, sprained my ACL, dislocated my kneecap and tore my patellofemoral ligament. I broke my arm a few years ago and it's perfectly fine now. My knee however, still feels far from 100% so I wanted to find out if it would ever fully heal. The above paragraph is my understanding of the differences between bone and ligament damage. Please correct me if I'm wrong, I'm not claiming to be a medical expert but if I'm right, Barkley could still end up being a great player.
Charlie Percival
3   Posted 27/10/2010 at 04:40:29

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Ye i know that tendons, ligaments are worse injuries and harder to recover from, but to think of plyaers like Eduardo, Alan, Smith, Cisse (I know the latter two were crap anyway), but it finished them off,, but your right he is a at the best age to have this injury if there is one. I dislocated my knee too and know it will happen again as its weak whereas bones can sometimes mend stronger than previous. I hope this is the case

Charlie Percival
4   Posted 27/10/2010 at 04:42:44

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What I was getting at too is I hope he can deal with the Psychological side, because4 he seems like a bit of a midfield general and he cant afford to lose any fire or authority in the role he pkays due to worrrying about the inury
Tony J Williams
5   Posted 27/10/2010 at 11:13:51

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I am not too sure about legs breaks, as it did nothing to stop Henrik Larsson from being a great player.

I would imagine with teh lad being so young, a bone break wouldn't be as devastating as if it happened in older age; however it may affect his growth and he could end up with a Chris Waddle...errrr. waddle.

What is more frustrating is that it happened when he was on internaltion duty.....just one more for the book.

I hope he recovers fully and is another gem like Rooney or Rodwell (to be honest still not overly convinced about Rodders yet)
Kevin Gillen
6   Posted 27/10/2010 at 12:45:30

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I watched the lad on Eurosport in the semis and finals of the England U-17 European Trophy winning tournament. He struck me as a physically strong, fast all action midfielder with courage and an eye for goal. He will be an ideal replacement for Gosling on the bench. I was more impressed by some of the young Spaniards who they beat in the final as centre mids, so I think he will end up as a second striker. I'm hoping the leg fracture isn't too bad and he makes a full recovery.
Peter Warren
7   Posted 27/10/2010 at 13:36:02

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Pat # 2 - without doubt you should claim to be a medical expert.
Ian Campbell
8   Posted 27/10/2010 at 14:28:25

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Charlie # 3

The difference is that those you mentioned Cisse, Smith, Eduardo all had 'open' breaks where the bone actually pierced through the skin due to the severity of the break and I would imagine that there were other complications in the recovery too. I dont think that barkley had that unless I am mistaken
Steve Edwards
9   Posted 27/10/2010 at 16:53:31

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It didn't affect a certain Peter Reid much and didn't Andy Grey break his leg before joining Everton. In fact I think Grey had broken his leg twice before he joined us.There's every chance he'll still come through.
James Flynn
10   Posted 27/10/2010 at 20:04:41

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Well, thank goodness, if it had to happen, it happened at 16, when the male body is in testosterone-production overload. Would bet on him recovering fine.
David Price
11   Posted 27/10/2010 at 20:09:24

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More worried about keeping him than recovering from injury.
He'll be fine and a future star for Everton, hopefully.
Liam Reilly
12   Posted 28/10/2010 at 16:00:15

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These are very important years in the boys' physical development, so hopefully its a one off and not the begining of another sicknote, because this lad has real potential.
Guy Wilkinson
13   Posted 28/10/2010 at 19:01:51

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I'm a doc.

Pat's was a fair summary. Hopefully the lad will be back to light running in the new year and could perhaps aim for a meaningless end of season game 1st team debut.

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