Ross Barkley will finally leave Everton in the January transfer window, but will not be moving to Chelsea, as he was expected to on transfer deadline day, last week.
The Toffees midfielder was involved in one of the more peculiar deadline day stories when it was rumoured that he had decided against a move to Stamford Bridge halfway through his medical with the Premier League champions.
However, the England international quickly moved to clear up the reports with a post on social media explaining that he simply decided against a deadline day move to the Blues due to his current injury problems.
Contrary to a number of reports in the press, I did not undertake a medical with any club at any point.- Ross Barkley (@RBarkley20) September 2, 2017
I simply decided that due to my injury, it would be best to make a decision on my future and assess all my options in January when fully fit- Ross Barkley (@RBarkley20) September 2, 2017
Now, according to the Mirror, Barkley will snub Chelsea in January and agree a move to Tottenham, instead, with the 23-year-old preferring the North London club to the reigning Premier League champions.
By the new year, Barkley will be free to discuss terms on either a January move or a pre-contract agreement with any club, as he will only have six months of his current deal at Goodison Park remaining.
Barkley could soon be lining up alongside Mousa Dembele at Tottenham. Images: PA
With Ronald Koeman already freezing the midfielder out of his plans over his refusal to sign a new contract, it isn't expected that Barkley will feature much for the Toffees before he leaves Merseyside, with his current hamstring injury expected to keep him out of action for at least a couple of months. This should open the door for Barkley to leave the club at the beginning of 2018.
With Barkley now set to leave in the new year, Everton will inevitably have to take a significant hit on the £35 million fee they reportedly agreed with Chelsea for the 23-year-old.
(H/T The Mirror)