Ross Barkley: Chelsea to sign Everton midfielder for £15m


Chelsea manager Antonio Conte feels the club have taken a “good opportunity” to sign Everton midfielder Ross Barkley.

The 24-year-old is expected to have a medical with the London club on Friday prior to completing a £15m move.

When asked about the deal, Conte told reporters Barkley was a “good prospect” but warned he was recovering from hamstring surgery in August.

“He’s very young and has a lot of space for improvement,” said Conte. “He is very strong, good technique.”

The Chelsea boss added: “He’s a good prospect but at the same time, it will be very important to understand, if the player signs, we must have patience to help him recover.

“Don’t forget he had a bad injury, a surgery and this player has not played for seven months.”

Barkley had hamstring surgery in August, the same month in which he turned down a move to Chelsea on transfer deadline day.

The England international rejected a new deal at Everton and is out of contract at the end of this season, opening the door for a cut-price move.

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Everton manager Sam Allardyce said on Thursday the club had been resigned to losing Barkley for some time.

And now, barring late hitches, he is likely to secure a move to Chelsea.

It will mean the player is leaving Goodison Park after 13 years, having joined Everton as an 11-year-old in 2005.

The academy graduate has played 150 times for Everton in the Premier League, scoring 21 times since making his debut in 2011.

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