Roberto Martinez on the similarities between Ross Barkley and Wayne Rooney

Ross Barkley

Martinez has described Barkley and Rooney as 'street footballers'.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has been talking about the similarities that young star Ross Barkley shares with Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney.

Barkley returned from an injury he picked up during pre-season in Everton's 3-0 win over Aston Villa at Goodison Park.

The Everton boss sees parallels with the academy product that left Merseyside for Manchester United 10 years ago for around £27 million.

Martinez is quoted in the Daily Mirror highlighting Barkley's love of the game and his appetite to play, saying: “The big strength Ross has is he doesn’t look at football as having expectations, he just goes in there with a raw love – he just wants to play.

“He is a kid who loves playing. When you watch someone in a park, then that is the way he plays – he truly loves it.

“He’s a street footballer like Rooney – 100%. Sometimes we have to drag him away from training because at the end he’s in there with the young kids, playing two v two and he loves it. We take him away because he doesn’t see the energy it takes out of his body.”

It looks as though Everton have taken every measure possible to ensure that Barkley's stay at Goodison Park is longer than that of Rooney's, as the 20-year-old signed a long-term contract at Everton at the start of the season.

His performances from last season in particular appears to have attracted interest from the more wealthy Premier League sides in the division with Manchester City rumoured to be strongly interested in him - and there has even been the odd rumour of him making a move across Stanley Park to local rivals Liverpool, though that move looks a bit far-fetched.

Barkley's impetus, movement and power was missed in the early stages of the season for Everton, and he is clearly an important player for them going forward. His desire to play and impress is clearly a huge factor in him becoming such a great talent.

If he achieved half of what Rooney has in his career then he will be a happy man - but Evertonians will be hoping it is at Goodison rather than elsewhere.

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