Everton manager Roberto Martinez has revealed he believes midfielder Gareth Barry deserved an England recall as recognition for his fine firm, reports ITV
The 33-year-old, signed from Manchester City in the summer, greatly impressed with the Toffees during a loan spell at Goodison Park last season, which earned him a permanent deal with Everton. He’s been consistent at the heart of the midfield, but his last England cap came all the way back in 2012.
Under manager Roy Hodgson, England are evolving into a more interchangeable, industrious and faster team in the midfield, with the Three Lions having lined up with a diamond formation in their fixtures after the World Cup.
The likes of box-to-box midfielders Jack Wilshere (Arsenal) and Fabian Delph (Aston Villa) have been preferred over Barry, with their excessive pace a factor in regaining possession for Hodgson, but Martinez feels Barry has been too good to leave out.
“He is the best defensive midfielder in the league. Teams have invested massive amounts of money into bringing in the best foreign players to play in that position – Fernando and Fernandinho at Man City – but you go through all the players in that position and Gareth has been the most consistent.”
“He has been overlooked for England – I don’t know the reason behind it but it allows him, at 33, to concentrate on being able to play every game for us. On one side, I feel he deserves the reward and I don’t understand why he is not getting it but on the other, it will extend his career at club level and that is important.”
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