West Bromwich Albion fans were completely divided over a potential return to the club for Gareth Barry.
The 38-year-old was released from his contract back in June, but manager Slaven Bilic wants the player to return after his successful rehabilitation of a career-threatening knee injury.
But a deal for the Premier League’s record appearance holder hit a stumbling block last week after it emerged the Baggies were locked in a financial dispute with his former club Everton over an unpaid clause.
Now though, it appears that’s been sorted, much to the delight of Bilic.
He told Express & Star: “He’s been there before in big games, has massive experience, massive quality and that’s why we want him to sign as soon as possible.
“He’s close. He had an operation on his knee and he worked really hard. To cut a long story short he’s been training with us and he looks good.”
Fans on Twitter were split at the news of Barry’s potential return.
Am i genuinely the only person who sees no value in this whatsoever..?
— Matt (@GGrubbie) October 31, 2019
Gareth Barry re signing can only benefit the squad especially the young lads who with the more senior pros who are trying to get this club promoted , he’s a winner who knows what it takes to get over the line to acheive , on & off the pitch big asset #wba
— Jason Wheeler (@lebouf1976) October 31, 2019
Seen a couple of Albion question re-signing Barry as it will block Harper’s chances of a 1st team chance?
To be clear, the only player blocking Harper is Harper himself. He needs to sort his head out & start showing the attitude that got him his chance in the first place #WBA
— Paul Harris (@Hero_Taylor9) October 31, 2019
Unsure on Barry, genuinely don’t think he’ll play anymore than 5 games for us from now until the end of the season #wba
— Griffgrove (@JSWAlbion) October 31, 2019
— Lee Williams (@LeeWilliamsWBA) October 31, 2019
— Safiya Outlines (@SafiyaOutlines) October 31, 2019
What do we think?
Gareth Barry has had a superb career and he could have called it quits in the summer and that fact would have stayed the same. Now, it seems he wants one final go at competitive football. Baggies fans will be hoping his experience can help take the club all the way back to the Premier League this season, as he managed to take them to the play-offs in the last campaign with a total of 24 Championship appearances to his name (TransferMarkt).