Everton hero warns Liverpool & Man United off of ace

Former Everton defender Alan Stubbs has told the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United to forget about summer moves for Ross Barkley.

The 20-year-old midfielder has emerged as one of the Premier League’s very best young players this term, playing a key role in the Toffees’ impressive season which almost yielded Champions League qualification.

Naturally his performances have alerted some of the division’s big hitters, with cross-city rivals Liverpool said to be plotting an audacious £38m move and United having been linked with him for some time.

Everton have sold a number of big name players in recent years to balance the books, with Marouane Fellaini having left just under 12 months ago to follow the likes of Wayne Rooney and Mikel Arteta away from Goodison Park.

But Stubbs believes that Barkley will not be going anywhere this summer:

“When someone of his talent comes along they stick out like a sore thumb, Ross was like that as a young boy.” He told talkSPORT.

“He had a hunger I’ve only seen before in Wayne Rooney. He wanted to be the first on to the pitch, practising all the time. He just loves football.

“The club are in a different position than we were five years ago, where we had to maybe sell one of the big stars.

“The club is in a much healthier place at the moment. Keeping Leighton Baines last summer was a huge statement.

“We’ve now got players in abundance who can kick us on to the next level. It’s important now as a club that we start to keep these players, rather than sell one or two every now and then. Barkley is the future.”

Although he won’t be moving during the summer according to Stubbs, the ex-Toffee believes that Barkley will go to the World Cup:

“He’s got to go Brazil, he’s the future for England. Whether he starts or is just in the squad, he’s got to go.”