English Premiership

Martinez wants Barkley rested

2015-03-25 11:01
Ross Barkley (AFP)

Cape Town - Everton manager Roberto Martinez has urged the England setup not to select midfielder Ross Barkley for the U21 European Championship later this year.

Barkley earned a call up to Roy Hodgson's full England squad for the European Qualifier against Lithuania at Wembley on Friday and the friendly with Italy four days later in Turin.

The 21 year old is also eligible to represent England in the U21 European Championship and almost certain to be chosen by Gareth Southgate for the tournament in the Czech Republic in June.

However, Martinez has insisted on more than one occasion that he believes Barkley has outgrown the under 21 set up because he traveled with the full England team to the World Cup in Brazil last year.

The Toffees boss believes a proper rest at the end of the season would do the youngsters development more good than travelling to the Czech Republic for another football tournament.

"We need to look after him and make sure he has that sort of standard for the rest of the season and has a proper break in the summer," Martinez said.

"Do that and we will have a player completely new for next season after the experiences he has had this season."

The Spaniard was particularly happy with Barkley's performance in the Europa League tie against Dynamo Kiev, despite Everton losing the tie.

"What Ross brings is the bigger the occasion, the bigger the performance and bigger the response," he said.

"What was pleasing last Thursday night was to see the 'old' Ross getting away from people, being so threatening with his forward pass and getting his shot away with either foot.

"He hit the post with his left foot and with his right foot. I loved seeing the signs of the 'old' Ross appearing."

Martinez is not the only Premier League coach urging caution against overusing young players with Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino also requesting that Harry Kane be left out of the U21 squad at the end of the season.

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