Manchester United legend Phil Neville has said that he was always certain that Ross Barkley was going to make it to the England squad for the World Cup.
The 20-year-old enjoyed a breakthrough season at Goodison Park in the 2013-14 campaign, establishing himself as one of the best young players in Europe and helping the Toffess finish as high as fifth in the Premier League.
The youngster’s performances were so good that England manager Roy Hodgson decided to name him in his 23-man squad for the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil. Although Barkley is likely to be largely a squad player, there have been calls for him to make at least substitute appearances.
Neville, who played for Everton from 2005 until 2013 after joining the Merseyside outfit from United, has now said that he was always certain that Barkley was destined to play for the Three Lions.
The 37-year-old former England international made his opinion known on social networking site Twitter.
Neville, who retired from international duty in 2007 and is now a first-team coach at the Red Devils, also said that he is pleased with England’s recent performances.
The 1966 World Cup winners got the better of Peru 3-0 with ease in a friendly international at London’s Wembley Stadium on Friday – their final game on home soil before the gala tournament in Brazil.
England will now jet off to Miami to take on Ecuador and Honduras in two more friendly matches before departing for Brazil for the World Cup.
Neville believes that Hodgson and his men are “heading in (the) right direction”.
"@ZainUnited123: @ are you satisfied with England's recent performances ?" Yes heading in right direction— Philip Neville (@fizzer18) June 1, 2014