• Premier League

Everton plan Barry signing talks

ESPN staff
May 9, 2014
Gareth Barry is about to become a free agent with his Manchester City contract expiring © PA Photos

Roberto Martinez will speak to Gareth Barry about the possibility of a permanent move to Everton next week.

The 33-year-old has made a significant impression during his season's loan from Manchester City, helping Everton to fifth place in the Premier League.

Manager Martinez, who admitted to being flattered by being linked to the Spurs job, was interested in making Barry's deal permanent in January as part of an ultimately unsuccessful move to bring fellow midfielder Jack Rodwell back to Goodison Park from City on loan.

Premier League rules prevent any side taking two players on loan from the same club but the deal to buy Barry, which would have circumvented that problem, was shelved when the Rodwell move fell through.

Martinez has made clear he wants to keep Barry, describing him as "an incredible footballer". The England international is out of contract at City this summer, and is considering his options, but will discuss his future with the Everton manager.

Martinez said: "I'm going to be speaking with all the players after the final game. We're going to make sure that we've got a real indication of where we are with every player. It's no different with Gareth.

"He's been an incredible footballer to have, Gareth Barry. He's set really high standards. He's been an example.

"It's no coincidence that we've had so many successful stories among our young players, when we have senior players with such incredible standards."

Despite Barry's help, Everton's push for a Champions League place has fallen short after a run of three defeats in their last four games.

But Europa League qualification has been secured ahead of Sunday's trip to Hull, when the midfielder is set to return, having missed last Saturday's 3-2 loss at home to City because he was ineligible to face his parent club.

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