Everton manager Roberto Martinez says that he will wait until the end of the season to resolve Gareth Barry’s future at the club.
The veteran midfielder is currently on loan at Goodison Park from Manchester City, and has been one of the Toffees’ most consistent and important performers in a stunning opening few months of the season.
However, there is no agreement to make the switch a permanent one once the campaign finishes, with Barry set to be out of contract.
Everton have been linked with a move to make the 32-year-old their own player, but Martinez says that he just wants the player to keep focused.
“Gareth has been vitally important in what we have achieved so far this season and I would like that to be the case for many, many years to come, but that is a conversation we are going to have in the summer,” he told The Guardian.
“The agreement was for the season and for Gareth to just enjoy his football and I don’t want to change that. I don’t think there is a real need. There is trust about what we agreed and all I want now is for Gareth to continue concentrating on his football for the second half of the season. I don’t want him thinking about his future, which might distract him from enjoying his football and that was the agreement we had.”
City are believed to be in no rush to extend Barry’s deal, and reportedly willing to accept £1m in January to allow him to make a full-time switch to Everton.