Everton loan star will return to Barcelona at season end - report

FC Barcelona

Gerard Deulofeu will be returning to Barcelona at the end of the season according to Mundo Deportivo

The loan market is usually synonymous with the lower leagues - young pretenders trying to prove themselves or washed up hacks giving their wrecked knees another evening of rest, ice, compression and elevation.

But one team in the Premier League who have utilised the loan system with absolute aplomb this summer gone are Everton.

Romelu Lukaku has of course been superb, as has Gareth Barry in the heart of midfield. But the young man who arrived from Barcelona hasn’t been bad either. Gerard Deulofeu has been a superb addition to the side - making impressive cameos in a to-and-fro battle with Kevin Mirallas for a starting berth.

His goal against Arsenal for instance was masterful - and it prompted Roberto Martinez to begin dreaming of a world where Deulofeu stays at Goodison Park for a second year:

"He has surprised me and everyone that he is ready now and wants to help the team. He is incredibly arrogant in the right way, has belief in himself and his finish against Arsenal was exactly what he deserved. We have an agreement that it could be extended an extra year as long as the parent club do not need the player."

That however now seems unlikely.

Reports in Spain however suggest that Barcelona have been so impressed with his performances in England - that he will be used in the first-team from next season.

It is believed that Tata Martino has been impressed with Deulofeu, and fellow loanee Rafinha who is at Celta Vigo. The belief therefore is that both players will not be loaned out next season - despite first-team opportunities being slim at the Nou Camp.

It is a shame for Everton. Deulofeu has looked very promising this campaign - and the hope would have been for him to continue his development at Goodison Park.

Now he faces a battle to get into the Barca team in 2014-15 - while Everton will have to consider other options as a replacement come June.

image: © mariosp

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