Ross Barkley – The Blemished Diamond

How do you solve a problem like Ross Barkley. The 23-year-old Toffee has placed many an Evertonian into quite the quagmire this summer. Ross’s under par performances, on and off the field it seems, have caused uprisings comparable to that of the storming of Bastille to take place. Season ticket holders marching down Goodsion Road, pitchfork in hand, demanding to take the perm clean off the head of what was once Everton’s prodigal son.

So how do we put this circus to bed?
One apparent solution I’ve seen discussed on the wonderful social forum that is Twitter, is to leave the Wavertree born Toffee to rot on the sidelines. So we continue to pay the wages of a talented footballer, to leave him on the sidelines, out of nothing more than principle? The cry from the Goodison faithful has been to turn the spineless mentality displayed over the last decade, into a firmer one, capable of winning. But I’m afraid when it comes to winning, there is no room for principle.

Let’s just have a brief overview of the situation. Ross was managed incorrectly under court jester Roberto Martinez. As a result he placed himself psychologically on a certain pedestal. Ronald Koeman enters the fray, with his typically bulldog, to the point approach. Koeman’s assesment of Ross doesn’t please the Ross., who has been assured under the previous regime, that he’s the dog bollocks. A diamond, according to some knobhead Spanish car salesman.

Ross Barkley ultimately is a confused, 23-year-old lad. A lad whose head is evidently west at the minute. Those who are older, remember being 23, don’t you? The majority of you didn’t know your arse from your elbow, and didn’t have a clue what you wanted from life. His already fairly fragile mindset is then subsequently subjected to some pathetically over the top abuse online. The lad has seemingly gone from hero to zero in the space of 12 months.

Speaking strictly football, yes Ross does sometimes leave a bit to be desired. His decision-making in particular at times is scrutinized. But for me, he’s never really had that level of quality consistent coaching required on his rise to the first team fray. The talent is there, it is raw, and it has not been nurtured. Bobby brown shoes tried to mould him into an intelligent number 10, when being honest he was never destined to take that role. Ross should have been coached into a Stevie G mould. A big, fuck off centre mid, a powerhouse, with a rasping right foot. Martinez tried to force his big build into the boots of a petit playmaker, when at the end of the day, that’s just not our Ross. Even Koeman had him out wide last year.
The point is, it’s been a rough sea for Ross lately. Maybe he is being a dickhead. Maybe turning down 100k a week at the club you love is a shithouse move. But you’re naive if you don’t think his agent, much like a young Mr Rooney, is selling him tales of worship and fatter wage packets at other clubs. There seems to be no genuinely legitimate journalism surrounding the issue, Twitter rumours aside, so it appears there is more than meets the eye.
So what do I reckon? Give the lad a break. Get behind him, give him the benefit of the doubt, and show the lad we want him to succeed. Let him shake off the cobwebs that seem to be affecting his already battered head, and allow him to getting back to being our very own boss little diamond.

Becasue at the end of the day, I’d be having a lonely cry in the toilets of GT4 if Chelsea start a chorus of “We’ve got a diamond…”
The shower of shite.
– Ben ( @bcwilloww )

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