Ross Barkley: Roberto Martinez tips midfielder for World Cup spot
Everton manager Roberto Martinez is convinced Ross Barkley would not be fazed by receiving an England World Cup call from Roy Hodgson this summer.
Barkley scored a superb solo goal in Everton's 3-0 win at Newcastle.
- Born Liverpool, December 5, 1993.
- Made debut, vs QPR, August 20, 2011.
- Scored first Everton goal, vs Norwich, August 17, 2013.
- Made England debut, September 6, 2013.
- Has gained three caps for England
It will only fuel a feeling on Merseyside that the 20-year-old should be on the plane to Brazil.
"All I can say is Ross is ready to help the national team, and nothing will faze him," said Martinez. "He would be very proud to represent England."
Barkley made his England debut in the 4-0 win against Moldova in September and now has three caps.
He was named in the squad for the friendly win over Denmark earlier this month and on Tuesday pressed his claim for a place at the World Cup with his sixth goal of the season.
Picking up possession 10 yards inside his own half, Barkley cut inside the Newcastle box before lashing the ball past Tim Krul.
"I know that Ross Barkley will be a phenomenal footballer for England," said Martinez. "But the timing has to be measured by the England manager. We all have to respect that.
"If the national team manager believes he needs Ross, he will be ready; if not, he will have a good summer.
Roberto Martinez Everton manager
“I know that Ross Barkley will be a phenomenal footballer for England”
"He needs to regenerate and recover after what has been his best and most demanding season as a professional."
Martinez likened Barkley to former Everton star Paul Gascoigne, although he also believes there is an element of ex-Chelsea and Germany Michael Ballack in his game.
"He has such a variety of strengths," said the Everton manager. "He can do things only top players can do. I don't think he has a like-for-like as a footballer.
"Sometimes he does things that remind you of Michael Ballack; at times it's Paul Gascoigne.
"Technically, he is as gifted as you are going to see. But what shocks you is the physicality that goes with it.
"On top of that is the character. Nothing distracts him from his role. He is a really down-to-earth, modern footballer. All he wants to do is enjoy his football and score goals. He is a joy to work with."