West Bromwich Albion were reportedly offered a chance to sign Chelsea midfielder Ross Barkley in the final days of the summer transfer window.
According to the reports in the Telegraph, West Brom were approached by Chelsea to know whether they would be interested in acquiring Ross Barkley on loan. However, his massive £110,000-a-week wages at Chelsea meant the Championship outfit never really had a chance to finance a deal of any kind for the 27-year-old Englishman.
Barkley joined Chelsea from Everton in a deal worth around £15 million back in 2018 but failed to impress at Stamford Bridge. The former England international has only made 86 appearances for the Blues to date and has been on the squad’s fringes for the last couple of years, with recurring injuries only adding to his struggles.
To resurrect Barkley’s career, the Blues loaned him out to Aston Villa last summer. He showed flashes of his quality and started very well in the early part of his loan term before another injury hampered his progress. When he returned, the Englishman’s performances were largely unimpressive. Therefore the Midlands club opted not to sign him permanently.
Earlier in the summer window, Barkley was linked with the moves to Everton and West Ham. He was even touted to complete a late deadline day move to Sean Dyche’s Burnley, but nothing materialized, leaving the former Everton man at an awkward crossroads at Chelsea.
In a recent interview, Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel revealed his frustrations at the inability to find a new club for the player who he believes would be a good addition for many sides. “He tried to go on loan again, to find a club, but it is not easy,’ Tuchel said. ‘The situation out there, the financial impact from corona to clubs abroad and clubs also within the country is huge. It’s not easy to find clubs who are able to invest.
“It’s hard to see people struggling and struggling with the situation. But the quality that Ross brings to the pitch could help a lot of clubs in Europe,” the German boss added.
Barkley is not favoured at Chelsea and has been frozen out of the Blues star-studded starting XI. Surprisingly, he is included in Tuchel’s Premier League squad, but it’s unlikely he will get any meaningful game time as Tuchel already has Jorginho, N’Golo Kante, and Mateo Kovacic at his disposal in midfield. Moreover, the Blues have signed another midfielder in Saul Niguez, which sends Barkley further down the pecking order.
Barkley’s contract at Stamford Bridge is set to expire in June 2023. That suggests he could well be moved on next summer or even in January to avoid losing him on a free. A year ago, it would have sounded shocking that Barkley was contemplating a Championship move, but that’s the harsh reality of how far his career has fallen after rising to the limelight when coming through the ranks at his boyhood club Everton.