Maurizio Sarri: Ross Barkley “was in trouble” when he arrived at Chelsea

Maurizio Sarri has explained how Ross Barkley has gone from a player “in trouble” to “a complete player” at Chelsea.

The former Everton midfielder has been in inspired form for the Blues this season following a tricky debut season at the club.

The 24-year-old has been directly involved in seven goals in 15 appearances in all competitions this season.

Sarri on Barkley: “At the beginning, he was in trouble”

Ross Barkley

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 05: Ross Barkley of Everton reacts after a missed chance during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Everton at White Hart Lane on March 5, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Sarri has opened up about Barkley’s struggles in West London when he first arrived at the club.

The Italian coach has since watched the player go from strength to strength over the past few months.

Sarri has admitted his surprise towards the player’s rapid rejuvenation at Stamford Bridge.

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Sarri said:

“At the beginning, he was in trouble.

“Then he started to improve in every training, in every match.

“And so I am surprised if I think back to the first month, but not if I think of the last two months.”

Sarri on Barkley: “He is a complete player”

SEVILLE, SPAIN – OCTOBER 15: Ross Barkley of England (top) celebrates with team mates as as Raheem Sterling of England (obscured) scores his team’s first goal during the UEFA Nations League A Group Four match between Spain and England at Estadio Benito Villamarin on October 15, 2018 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Now, Barkley has begun to transform into “a complete player” at Chelsea, Sarri claims.

The 59-year-old has tipped the midfielder to become crucial for both the Blues and England.

Sarri added:

“I like very much him because I think he is a complete player.

“He has physical qualities. He is fast. Technically he’s very good: he has a good kick with the left foot, and with the right.

“He’s improving in moving the ball. He’s quicker, mentally quicker, and he’s improving tactically.

“I think he’s on the way to becoming a very important midfielder, not only in England.

“Barkley, I think at the moment from a tactical point of view, is a step ahead of (Ruben) Loftus-Cheek.

“Loftus-Cheek arrived later because, in the first part of the season, he had two or three little injuries.”


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