How Ross Barkley Can Grow To Dominate
Can Everton youngster Ross Barkley be the man to step up and replace Marouane Fellaini at the heart of the Toffees midfield this season after the Belgian left?
Last week new Everton boss Roberto Martinez insisted his squad needs to build their strength and fitness if they are to conquer the long, arduous climb to the top of the Premier League. This includes some of the most exciting youngsters in the league pushing through this season.
With Fellaini departing in the 11th hour of transfer deadline day, the core strength of the midfield also leaves with him. Some would argue that Martinez has a readymade replacement waiting in the shadows, and Toffees fans are excited to see him step up to the role of the dominating midfielder. The man in question is naturally Ross Barkley, who could prove a star player on Merseyside this season, especially after such a promising start to the campaign, with a wonder goal first up against Norwich under his belt.
Barkley was given some decent playing time under Moyes last season and impressed in the centre of midfield. Granted, he never shone out like Wayne Rooney did during his early days at Goodison Park but for a 19-year-old Barkley is progressing nicely.
He’s been able to learn off Fellaini and Leon Osman, two real stalwarts in this Toffees squad, and after stints at Leeds and Sheffield Wednesday he’s ready to push for starts at Everton. Yet what Barkley really needs is some muscle, an attribute Fellaini has in abundance and what makes the Belgian so difficult to beat one-on-one.
Barkley must use this early season to bulk up and throw his weight around on the training pitch. Building muscle quickly is no mean feat, Barkley may therefore want to consider increasing his protein intake drastically. It is now widely acknowledged around football that whey protein shakes replenish muscle breakdown and increase their strength. If Barkley gets his dietary programme right over the next few weeks he could end the season as one of the strongest in the league.
Granted, Martinez is likely to play a more fluid game than Moyes did, and focus will be on a more majestic passing game rather than contesting every loose ball. Yet Everton still need a muscular force in the middle and Barkley has the chance to develop into this role should he harness the power of whey protein and strengthen his upper body.
Technically he is a gifted footballer but he needs the strength that Rooney and Fellaini naturally had to make the step up. Martinez will give Barkley as much chance as any other player, so it’s down to the youngster to prove his worth.
Do you think Barkley can make the step up this season if he improves his body strength? Share your views below.
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