barkley

Ross Barkley progressed through the academy at Everton before making it into the first team.

However, the England man will be on the opposition when Everton visit Stamford Bridge on Sunday in the Premier League and he will have no choice but to ensure that the Toffees are put to the sword by the Blues as they look to keep with Manchester City in the Premier League race.

This will be the first time that Barkley will be playing against Everton since his move to Chelsea in January.

The player struggled after his move to Chelsea but he has picked form and impressed under new manager Maurizio Sarri this season and could be set to give loan import Mateo Kovacic a run for his money.

In a chat with Jamie Redknapp ahead of the game on Sunday, the England midfielder opened up about the game.

“I don’t think it will be the best,” he spoke about the reception he might receive from the away fans.

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“There might be a few who might say a few good things.

“I achieved my dream of playing for Everton, from a young age I always dreamed of scoring for Everton. In my living room I always used to tell my mum ‘one day I’ll score for Everton’ and when that happened it was unbelievable for me. I tried to achieve success there but sometimes these things happen in football.

“Coming to Chelsea was a big challenge for me.

“I was approaching 25 and I felt looking back I could have improved a lot more [at Everton].

“At Chelsea I knew I’d improve a lot quicker around better players, world-class players.

“I’m not nervous, I’m excited to play against my former club and team-mates – I understand how some of them play, so that could be an advantage for me.

“On the day I might get a few nerves as it will feel a bit strange. I’m looking forward to catching up with some of the staff there who I used to get on really well with.”

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Barkley admitted that his departure from his comfort zone in Everton to a very competitive club like Chelsea was a big challenge, and is one that he has relished.

He also spoke about his maturity as an adult and a player. He previously had tattoos on his left arm, but they’ve all been removed.

“I was very young when I got my tattoos,” he said.

“I was 16 when I got my full sleeve – I rushed into it. Over the years I didn’t really like having them. My mum told me at the time she wasn’t sure about me getting them and that I rushed into them – and she still says that to this day. I’ve been getting them removed over the last couple of years.

“I’ll be 25 in a couple of weeks. I feel like I’ve matured over the last couple of years, dealing with injuries and moving to Chelsea. I’ve had to push myself and I’ve really matured.”

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