Martinez pleased with 'maturing' Barkley

by | 09/08/2015  47 Comments  [Jump to last]
Roberto Martinez says the signs of a more mature Ross Barkley against Watford yesterday bode well for the new season.

The 21-year-old scored a superb equaliser with a quarter of an hour to go in the 2-2 draw against the newly-promoted Hornets, evoking memories of his first goal for the Blues against Norwich two seasons ago.

And his manager believes yesterday's performance and his importsnt goal shows that Barkley has changed.

"I think youre looking at a Ross Barkley who has changed immensely, Martinez said after the game.

"He understood the moment of the game and what the team needed he played with maturity.

"His strike was world class, as good as it gets. It brings back memories of his first goal for Everton two seasons ago at Norwich.

"At that point we had a very brave, enthusiastic, young, raw Ross Barkley and I think with the same quality, you saw him be mature and responsible which is a fantastic sign for the season.

"His role in the team was magnificent for a young man.

Barkley, meanwhile, says that improving on his goals tally is one of his main targets this season after a disappointing return last term.

I was disappointed with my goal tally last year so to get my first goal in the first game is really good for my confidence, he told evertontv.

Thats what creative midfielders and attacking midfielders have got to do so its good to get my first goal of the season.

Im working on [scoring from distance] and Im working on trying to get a few tap-ins as well, but thats not the main thing."  

Reader Comments (47)

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Stephen Brown
1 Posted 09/08/2015 at 20:17:47
I'd like to see RM just let Barkley quietly go about his business until his form returns. Cracking goal yesterday by the way!
Dave Abrahams
3 Posted 09/08/2015 at 20:38:58
Stephen I agree entirely but Martinez can't let anything happen quietly, Ross wasn't great yesterday, scored a great goal and did better when he played further back after Barry went to fullback.

We all know Barkley has lots of talent, let him produce it at a steady pace, no sense in gushing over him when it obviously didn't.

Andy Walker
6 Posted 09/08/2015 at 21:39:32
world class
very brave

Señor hyperbole strikes again. How does this help Ross or Everton?

Denis Richardson
7 Posted 09/08/2015 at 21:47:35
Beat me to it Andy - take away the goal (which was a cracker) and young Ross had an ok game at best, some good touches and some shite ones. The whole team was gash in the first half.

But that's our Roberto, one good thing and 10 bad and he'll pump up the former and ignore the rest.

Sean McCarthy
8 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:00:36
"he understood the moment of the game"

He talks some shit!!!

Phil McKeown
9 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:08:12
What a load of crap. Ross was brutal yesterday and has been for quite some time. He looks like he has bulked up in the gym too much, at the detriment to his mobility. He also takes an unnecessary extra touch when he shouldn't and loses the ball either dribbling or with a wayward pass all too often.

I blame Martinez partly for his demise as sticking him on the left last season bloody ruined the lad's confidence. When are people going to realise that the boos ringing around Goodison are not directed at the players but the piss poor insepid philosophy from the manager and jokers in the boardroom.

John Crawley
10 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:17:58
To an extent I understand what he is saying about Barkley but I don't think the public comments help him at all, just let him develop on the quiet. I also think he isn't a no 10 and his future should be as a no 6 alongside either Besic or McCarthy.
Chris Gould
11 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:20:18
His left foot cross for Lukaku was also world class. The kid can play off either foot and should be encouraged to shoot more regularly. He is a confidence player, the goal will do him the world of good. I don't think we're looking for a new number 10. Where would that leave Barkley? Pushing him out wide will destroy him. He won't play in cdm as Martinez will not drop Barry and also has Cleverley who can partner McCarthy.
We need a new striker who can play the lone striker role. Hold the ball up and allow Barkley, Mirallas and Deulofeu to run in behind.
Harold Matthews
12 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:38:11
A great goal and a slightly better than average performance but, my goodness, the lad impressed me. Never have I seen him start a season with such a brisk spring in his step. A 40 yard dash to win the ball from a Watford counter-attack. What a transformation. Even his post-match interview seemed more mature. Has the kid finally grown up? Hmm. Has the Stones business given him a kick in the right direction. I think it has.
Chris Gould
13 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:40:40
John, if he isn't a number 10 then he isn't going to play anywhere. He doesn't tackle well enough or have the engine to be a number 6. He has a powerful physique designed for explosive movement. He gases out if he runs too much. He just doesn't have the endurance to get up and down like McCarthy or Cleverley. Barkley needs to be in a position where he can run at defenders and put his foot through the ball.
Jim Hardin
14 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:44:43
Well at least we have a new word to be used constantly by RM this season, "magnificent." The strike was magnificent but the player was average with too many unforced passing turnovers, mostly directly to the other team. Still, he was active and involved so that is a positive over last season. Hoping he finds his form and lives up to the labels of his coach.
Paul Tran
15 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:49:05
Now, now, we can't be having a go at Martinez for bigging up our players, surely? For the whole summer I've been repeatedly told that Garbutt is the best young left back in England and Stones is the best young centre half in Europe. And I didnt see Roberto's lips move. He can't compete with this site for praise!

Seriously, good to see Ross looking lively. Long may it continue!

Steven Higgott
16 Posted 09/08/2015 at 22:56:36
Great goal that shows us all what he can do.

If his awareness of what is around him, attacking or defending then we will have a good player maybe even a great player but that side of his game does let him down.

Let's hope this goal gives him the confidence to shoot more outside the box as he does have the talent.

Peter McHugh
17 Posted 09/08/2015 at 23:01:21
I thought Martinez was quiet last season about Barkley except he he was vocal about him needing a rest in the summer. The season before he was signing from the rooftops and Barkley was very good.

Personally I'm not overly concerned what Martine says I just hope Barkley performs well this season unlike last. Two great shots, one great cross and hopefully he's getting his mojo back.

Mark Andersson
18 Posted 10/08/2015 at 03:15:17
Have to agree with Chris 9. Ross was chasing back but never made the tackle. He did look fitter than last season. Martinez has to spin Ross to deflect that the team in general played shite.

Next he will be bigging up Kone, although I thought he made a difference. Don't get me started on Rom. For a big man, he is a shithouse. He half-hearted jumps to head a ball, and he pulled up when one-on-one with the keeper instead of going through him.

On a brighter note, they all can only get better, but that's more wishful thinking.

Colin Williams
20 Posted 10/08/2015 at 04:26:50
Just to let people know... the present/ future game is about anticipating and intercepting passes when not in possession of the ball... not going to ground. Players are being coached at all ages to, "read the game better" and steal the ball before the player receives the pass... so your on the front foot, moving forward and counter attacking is quicker and more effective.(also going to ground put's you out of the game)

Please, stop blaming players who don't put a tackle in... or don't go to ground to tackle... just because they used to do this! It doesn't mean they're not trying or lazy or can't be bothered! The game is changing... and players are adapting to a different playing field.( they are being coached and thinking differently!)

Just saying...people moaning because players don't tackle... now hopefully some supporters will also look at the game with a slightly different "slant" to the game and you'll know... one reason why this, "sometimes" does not happen. Tackling normally is a last resort.

Terence Leong
21 Posted 10/08/2015 at 06:00:31
Barkley's best position is a number 8 (is that what we call an attacking midfielder?).

He has got more in his locker than Frank Lampard. What makes Lampard valuable is his decision making (times his run), economically with the ball, doesn't take too many touches, but always shoots the ball with precision.

But Barkley can run with the ball, shoot with either foot. He reminds me of Gazza actually, but better built, less confident though i.e. Gazza keeps going, even when he makes a mis-pass.
And Gazza didn't really come of age until after Italia '90, when he was about 23 years old. Before that, he was seen as a prodigious player who was 'daft as a brush', fancy Dan who took the mickey out of players, but little end result.

Barkley can be that. Its whether we are patient enough to see that happen, and whether Martinez is prepared to let him off the lease a bit more.

Mark Andersson
22 Posted 10/08/2015 at 06:24:33
Good post Colin Williams, it's why I like TW. The game has changed a lot, although most of us old school fans still like to see a player make a crunching tackle.

Coleman was booked for a perfectly good tackle on Saturday and yet Deeney got away with a yellow instead of a straight red.

Phil Walling
23 Posted 10/08/2015 at 08:54:44
" It brings back memories of his strike against Norwich TWO SEASONS AGO," says it all for me. The lad shines so rarely that even his manager can recall those very moments !

Important though Saturday's goal was, I saw little in Rosses performance that improved on his form during the intervening time. The lad is possessed of a great physique, a terrific shot but absolutely no football intelligence. Playing him every game to see if he can suddenly gain that attribute will do nothing to exit the slough our team has wallowed in for the last twelve months.

Charles Cook
24 Posted 10/08/2015 at 09:03:35
For a lad with 'absolutely no football intelligence' the vision shown in his pass to McCarthy was pretty stunning .

He is a player who seems to be a magnet for over statement - at both ends of the spectrum .

I think a big issue for him, and our other midfielders , is who to pass to when there are so few options and so little movement .

That the system does n't suit him seems a bit of a theme on here and I'm not sure who else it suits.

Phil Walling
25 Posted 10/08/2015 at 10:41:34
Bloody hell, Charles, if he's gonna get praise for the odd correct decision and execution, Roberto's right -he is already the greatest in the history of the English game !

I just don't happen to think so.

Dave Abrahams
26 Posted 10/08/2015 at 11:16:40
Colin (16) your correct, football is becoming a non contact game, well it already is, young lads at every club are being taught exactly that, it's what is making the game more boring and the higher up the leagues the more the game is such a stop start game with the referee ruining the game because he made to stick to these rules.

The way the game is evolving it will drive more people away than attract them,especially fans of my age or era.

Jay Wood
27 Posted 10/08/2015 at 11:21:05
Colin #16

Excellent point about the reduced effectiveness of tackling in the game.

Only, it's really not a recent innovation. I recall 20 years ago the Repuclic of Ireland losing a play off game with Holland for Euro 1996 and the Irish players lamenting in bewilderment afterwards "they didn't tackle us!" The Dutch closed down and shepherded the Irish players, but they didn't dive in recklessly.

In the interim years many a foreign coach and player have echoed their own bewilderment at the British game's continued fascination with a full blooded tackle. I think it was no less a figure then Pepe Guardiola who said tackling is a last desperate resort which results because your team have lost control of the game play.

The British football viewing public still demand and enjoy a blood and guts challenge. I number myself in that group, but I also recognize the rules and their application by refs is outlawing many aspects of previously acceptable challenges.

The game has and will continue to evolve and we need to adapt accordingly.

So whilst calls for a mean hard bastard kicking anything that moves may satisfy a primordial desire in many of us, it is not the direction football is headed.

Now a few vocal hate-to-lose bastards who gee up both our own players and rile the opposition, I wouldn't say no to...

John Daley
28 Posted 10/08/2015 at 11:29:28
Well, he constantly gets slated for making the wrong decisions, Phil. Not exactly a level playing field if you're not going to give him praise when due. Anyway, simply pointing out when he's done something well, or had a positive impact, isn't the same as showering him with undeserved plaudits.

Everton players send stray passes all over the pitch from the first whistle until the last, they dilly dally on the ball, delaying the decision who to get shut to before shunting it back to whoever's behind them, the majority of them back off opposing players until they reach the edge of our box and then think 'hmm, maybe I should throw a belated challenge in'. Such sloppy, stilted play is endemic throughout the entire side, yet with Ross it's seemingly taken as conclusive evidence that he's nothing but a Benny from Crossroads headed lazy bastard.

I was delighted that he scored a screamer on Saturday as he's clearly a confidence player. He needs that willingness to try something different that resides within him to be resuscitated. Last season it went into hiding as he sought solace behind the simple, safety first option. It didn't do him, or us, any favours at all.

Tony Dove
29 Posted 10/08/2015 at 11:31:18
I can't understand the Ross bashers. Here is a potential international star with the ability to turn a game with one pass or shot. Not the finished product yet but we should be building the team around him. There are plenty of donkeys in the team,let them do the tracking back.
One of Roberto's few plus points is that he sees Ross' true potential. Unfortunately I doubt if he is the man to fully unlock it.
Charles Cook
30 Posted 10/08/2015 at 12:45:02
Phil , John has in part made my reply for me but just to clarify . I've no issue with you rating the player differently it's the over the top stuff that I was alluding to . Your response made my point probably better than I did .

I recognise I've been guilty of over eulogising the player but the slamming of him is ludicrous - and damaging . He was n't great on Saturday but did several good things and despite what several reports have suggested , recorded impressive ball retention stats .

These may or may not be important to you , they 're a part of the picture and if he's going to get called , let's do it fairly .

My point is wider than our little conversation Phil - just to be clear .

Phil Walling
31 Posted 10/08/2015 at 18:46:01
Nothing we say on here has any affect on the player or the management team. So, if in MY OPINION, Ross is the perpetual 'promiser', why shouldn't I say as much ?

This is his third season as 'the guy who should never be omitted' and, sadly, he is exactly at the same level (usually) as he was in his early days. Yes, he may be a good 'impact player' but, for sure, he ain't going to be an all-time great. Sadly.

I hope he proves me wrong but I wish he'd hurry up about it !

Tony McNulty
32 Posted 10/08/2015 at 19:03:52
Neville Southall came to the July AGM of the Everton Supporters' Club in London. He had loads of interest to say on various Everton topics. On Barkley he said that Ross was brilliant when he didn't think, and operated totally by instinct. However when he stopped and started wondering what to do, where to pass it, he was distinctly average.

I thought that this was quite an insight. Last season Roberto had him playing in different positions trying to think and become the complete player. Whereas his strength is operating by instinct, and he needs to be given free rein to do as his instincts tell him.

Our manager seems to have in his head some blueprint of how the game ought to be played, and often seems to try to fit players to that model. Whereas what is required is fitting the tactics and style to the strengths of the players.

It's easy being an armchair manager, I guess.

Andy Walker
33 Posted 10/08/2015 at 19:54:37
Colin 16, have you heard of a lad called John Terry, as you say just saying....,,.
Andy Walker
34 Posted 10/08/2015 at 19:59:50
Has anyone just seen Jamie Carragher run rings around our manager on Sky's pre match for WBAvMan City? If anyone still thinks Martinez has the knowledge and communication skills to manage our club, that just about kills it. A total joke. Martinez couldn't answer direct questions about are style of play and reverted to generalisation/deflection.
Oliver Molloy
35 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:02:46
How did Carragher run rings round him?
Ian McDowell
36 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:06:42
I thought Roberto handled and conducted himself superbly as ever in front of the cameras.
Andy Walker
37 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:28:15
As I said Oliver, he didn't deal with any of the question around Evertons style of splitting the CBs, dropping a central midfielder back to cover and splitting the full backs. They even showed the goal we conceded against Burnley which demonstrated the weakness of this strategy. Martinez response? Well we won 3-1 what the problem? In other words the conceding of the goal was an irrelevance. Well it was on this particular occasion but it ignored the fact that on 20+ other occasions last season it fucking wasn't as we didn't win due to this type of strategy which was exploited by the opposition.
Did you really see the programme? Can't believe it?
Oliver Molloy
38 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:33:50
No I haven't seen it. I will try and have a look,thanks.
Andy Walker
39 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:39:21
Fair enough Oliver, I found it really quite shocking and I'm trying not to be OTT. Carragher explicitly suggested it was better for a CB to play a forward pass to a midfield player further up the field, rather than split the CBs and let a midfielder such as Barry come and collect the ball from a CB position. Martinez just ignored this suggestion and gabbled on about nothing in particular in the hope we forgot the point Carragher was making.
Oliver Molloy
40 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:49:39
Well, if what you are saying is correct he would just ignore what Carragher was suggesting- any manager would.

A manager is not going to get into a "I'm right you're wrong " scenario with a football pundit on live tv.
Definitely got to get a look, talk sport are doing a programme on Everton tonight at 9 with Collymore - that should be interesting .

James Stewart
41 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:49:53
Barkley played just the same way as he always does on Saturday. Excellent strike but he had a poor game. His passing was atrocious. Martinez can blather on all he wants about maturity but when he has stopped misplacing 5 yard passes I might be inclined to pay more attention to this kind of hyperbole
Andy Walker
42 Posted 10/08/2015 at 20:53:37
Oliver of course you are right, my point is he didn't explain why Carragher's assertion was wrong or put a counter argument, he just ignored it.
Oliver Molloy
43 Posted 10/08/2015 at 21:01:14
Just listened to Collymore talking up his show. It sounds like he means business asking questions about Everton finances etc etc.
Andy Walker
44 Posted 10/08/2015 at 21:13:28
Report back!
Matt Traynor
45 Posted 10/08/2015 at 21:18:45
Didn't Collymore do a similar "expose" 18 months ago or so? I recall Colin Fitz, once of this parish, was an interviewee.

For all his many faults, Colly does seem to have a soft spot for Everton - maybe because we desperately tried to sign him when he went to the RS.

(Sorry for mentioning about us trying to sign someone decent)

Tony Abrahams
46 Posted 10/08/2015 at 21:27:18
Interesting Andy, but the truth is,there really is no answer to the way our team is set up defensively at the minute.

Phil, Charles might have went over the top when he called Ross's pass stunning, but read his post again because I'm sure you will agree with everything else he says at post 20.

Andy Walker
47 Posted 10/08/2015 at 21:35:38
Sadly Tony I think that's true. I just hoped our manager might be able to shed some light on it, but I don't think he knows himself after watching today.
Don Alexander
48 Posted 10/08/2015 at 00:09:21
I am not a fan of Martinez. I think he's established himself as a bullshitter, period. It does my head in when we're looking for a "No. 10 Playmaker" whilst we have Ross Barkley at the club. With a different manager Ross Barkley would by now be the first name on an England team sheet as a "No.10", never mind Everton's.

I've watched Ross and he's way too short on self-confidence and even arrogance. He and Martinez need to be forced to watch videos of Alan Ball, the ultimate Everton "No.10" (and yes, I know Hursty wore that number!) and then, maybe, at last, Ross will see the way forward....

Or does he really have to go elsewhere to develop under a manager with know-how?

Phil Walling
49 Posted 11/08/2015 at 06:59:17
Well, we all hope Ross can turn his cameos into consistent quality performances. I'm just one of the doubters that it will ever happen.

I suspect RM sees him ideally as his No.10 - certainly he has preferred him over Naisy since early this year - and if he cannot be accommodated in that role he has insufficient guile to be included elsewhere. Perhaps that scorcher last Saturday will have persuaded the manager that his money may be better spent on the return of Lennon - yet another right winger !

And, by the way, Talk Sport now hinting that Evans is a done deal so the shopping is all but over !

Paul Cherrington
50 Posted 11/08/2015 at 11:27:13
Interesting what Big Nev says about Barkley as I would agree with that point of view. I think he is being over coached when we should give him free reign to play how he wants and let others be the 'water carriers'.
Peter Murray
51 Posted 15/08/2015 at 01:56:28
Martinez confident that Barkley will recapture his best form this season. He sees his best position as Number 8.

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