It is highly unlikely that Chelsea attacking midfielder Ross Barkley returns to Aston Villa, journalist Luke Hatfield has told This Is Futbol.
Barkley spent last season on loan at Villa, where he initially impressed. The £18m-rated 27-year-old scored in his first two games against Liverpool and Leicester City, both victories, as Dean Smith’s side made a strong start to the campaign.
However, as the season went on, Barkley eventually found himself in and out of Villa’s starting XI, unable to maintain the kind of form he had showed prior.
Would you take Barkley back
Asked by TIF if a permanent move is now completely off the table, Hatfield of the Express & Star said:
“I’d say so. I don’t think we saw enough from Ross Barkley at Villa for the club to really stick a bid down. I think the money that Chelsea would want and the wages that he’s on is astronomical, really.
“He started really well. I think everyone kind of straight away wanted to kind of throw the money at Chelsea. But then, you know, after he picked up that hamstring injury, he really struggled.
“The money that’s wanted, I just don’t think the finances and the player’s age really add up at all.”
With the likes of Mason Mount, Timo Werner, N’Golo Kante and Jorginho, the Blues already have options when it comes to those attacking and midfield positions.