Manchester United have reportedly joined the likes of Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea in the summer pursuit of Everton superstar Ross Barkley.

The Daily Mirror are claiming that Manchester United have developed a keen interest in Everton superstar Ross Barkley. The Toffees midfielder has been attracting interest from the likes of Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea. And it seems the Red Devils are the latest one to follow suit and be embroiled in the summer transfer battle for the Englishman.

Ross Barkley’s days at Everton seem numbered now. With just over 12 months left on his current deal at Goodison Park, Ronald Koeman has handed the player an ultimatum to either agree an extension with terms that will see him pocket £100,000 per-week, barring which he will be sold in the summer.

Barkley’s indecisiveness perhaps, stems from his treatment by Ronald Koeman, who has often dropped the player to the bench, criticising him often in an attempt to bring him to raise his game.

While Barkley has always been an electric player, his inconsistency is what has undermined his talent, something both the player and Koeman are keen to remove. In fact, of late, the Evertonian has started producing good displays on a consistent basis – which has driven up the interest in him.

Tottenham, especially, were told to be in the lead for Barkley, with Mauricio Pochettino something of an expert in getting the best out of young talent. Barkley’s work-rate would also be a factor that would be a major positive for Pochettino, who has an impressive core of young talent at his disposal.

Arsenal and Chelsea, though, have emerged as competitors. Chelsea need to beef up their midfield and find a perfect partner for N’Golo Kante. Matic and Fabregas have done commendable jobs at different points in the current campaign but both have fallen short on a few occasions.

Arsenal, on the other hand, are struggling with numbers in the midfield and could see an exodus of senior players in the summer. Ross Barkley envisages the kind of box-to-box midfielder that is necessary at Emirates while his creativity means he can more than make up for the loss of any creative midfielders in the summer.

However, Manchester United, who have always maintained a keen eye on Barkley, are also in the race to sign the 23-year-old now. The player was once touted as the true heir to Wayne Rooney and while he has failed to live up to the billing so far, he still may be about to follow into his footsteps.

Jose Mourinho is looking to find a replacement for Wayne Rooney and who better than the player who was touted as his heir, to replace the Manchester United record-holder. The report states that Rooney has accepted that his Manchester United career may be about to end and is considering a return to Everton.

Out with the old, in with the new? (Picture Courtesy - AFP/Getty Images)

Out with the old, in with the new? (Picture Courtesy – AFP/Getty Images)

Ronald Koeman has already expressed his desire to bring the player back to Goodison and an agreement could well be reached between the two clubs – one that sees the two players move to either direction, along with a considerable chunk of money towards the Toffees as well.

Manchester United are still far from their menacing best but the Devils seem to have found their teeth finally, with the club currently on a 22-game unbeaten run under Jose Mourinho, who looks every bit the manager to bring back the glory days at Old Trafford.

Mourinho had always maintained that he loved Rooney as a player and lamented this season that he got to manage the player so late into the player’s career. Barkley, bearing the same skill-set as his compatriot, is likely to provide Mourinho with a chance to do what he wished.

Who knows, Barkley might just become the torchbearer of the new United.

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