Everton will have no choice but to sell Ross Barkley unless he signs a new contact, manager Ronald Koeman has warned.
Much has been made of the future of star striker Romelu Lukaku, who reportedly turned down a lucrative offer to extend his contract beyond 2019 and scored twice in Sunday’s 4-2 home Premier League win over Leicester City.
But Barkley’s deal expires one year sooner in 2018 and Koeman concedes there will be little Everton can do but cash in on the 23-year-old if he does not commit his future to the club soon.
“We offer him a new contract and then [there are] two possibilities,” Koeman said at his post-match media conference.
“One, he signs that contract. If he doesn’t sign that contract, then we need to sell the player.
“It is simple, it is not so difficult in my opinion.”
The perfect way to finish the week off. pic.twitter.com/SMbtpfLdB2
— Ross Barkley (@RBarkley20) April 9, 2017
Lukaku’s double helped Everton to a seventh consecutive top-flight victory at Goodison Park, with Barkley setting up the first of his two goals with a perfect cross.
Koeman continued: “We try to keep the best players. We have spoken a lot about Ross and Rom because they are really important. Most of the time their quality can be the difference between Everton and the opponent, like it was [against Leicester].
“You need those kind of players on the top level because they make the difference.
“We know Rom is a great finisher but Ross played really well between the lines, with a great view of the game and a nice assist. I think he should have scored one too but he played very well.
“They [Barkley and Lukaku] were outstanding and that is what you want to see – your best players performing that way. But the whole team performance was outstanding as well.”
Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham have been among the teams linked with a move for Barkley.
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