Roberto Martinez insists there is no chance Everton would consider selling Ross Barkley in January, even if they were to receive a world record bid.
The 20-year-old has been one of the brightest stars of the Premier League season thus far, and it looks almost certain that he will be part of the England squad which travels to Brazil for the World Cup Finals next summer. By that time, he may also have played a key role in the Toffees securing a place in the UEFA Champions League.
In what has been a hugely impressive campaign for the Goodison Park outfit, they currently stand fifth in the Premier League table, having lost just once so far, and are just two points behind leaders Liverpool. Barkley will be crucial if they are to maintain this form, but the midfielder has been linked with a big-money move in January.
However, Martinez has revealed that he and his club simply will not entertain the idea of letting the youngster leave. Indeed, even if a bid was made similar to that which saw Real Madrid land Gareth Bale for a world record £96million, the former Wigan Athletic boss insists the player would remain on the books of the Merseyside blues.
“Even if we got a Gareth Bale size valuation we would never even consider it in January,” he told the Daily Mirror. “Ross is an icon for us. He represents everything we are trying to do this season, so even if a stupid offer arrived in January it would never affect us.
“It is important for us as a football club to show we are making the right decisions. There is no question mark over Ross’s future, he is in the best moment of his time and is everything we want a player to represent at Everton. There is not even a question mark against whether he is going to be here in February or not.”