Interview

Ross Barkley: Lifting the Lid

Ross Barkley is the latest member of the squad to provide some behind-the-scenes snippets on life at Chelsea during the season, including who loves to take a shot, which young free-kick taker may emerge, and which jokers make everyone feel at ease.

The midfielder also answers a question from Olivier Giroud, who was the previous player to complete this Q&A…

Who was the best player in training towards the end of the season?

Pedro was really sharp.


Of the outfield players, who fancies himself in goal?


It is Olivier Giroud. After training sometimes when we have done some tactical work, we will do some shooting and he will go in goal and have a bit of fun, when the goalies have been working really hard and they have had a long session. Ollie will say give us the gloves, I will go in goal and he loves to do that. And he is decent at it! Higuain is as well, he can be a decent goalie.
 

Of the defenders last season, who would make the best striker?

I would say Zappacosta, or maybe Gary Cahill as a target man, but I say Zappa as he loves a shot and from the tightest of angles he is able to score goals.

Who did you sit with on away trips last season? What did you do to pass the time?

I sat with Billy McCulloch, one of the masseurs, and I sat with Robert Green but you do not really get conversation out of him, he always has his eyeballs stuck to his notepad or his laptop. It was just me and Billy really, and Gary Cahill when he travelled. To pass the time we just had a laugh really.

Who was good at lifting morale after a bad result last season?

Azpi is really good at it. Gary Cahill and David Luiz. The leaders of the squad. They were really vocal around the changing rooms and helped the team if we had a little dip. They were always positive and tried to push the lads on in training as well.
 

Who is the biggest joker in the dressing room?

I would say David, he is always messing about, and Toni Rudiger. Both of them are characters and are funny, in a way that makes it easy to be yourself around them because they are warm people and very funny.


Who is the quietest?

N’Golo is. N’Golo and Ruben. You get more conversation out of Ruben but N’Golo only speaks when he needs to so I would say N’Golo is the quietest.

Who is good at free-kicks in training who we might not know about?

People know about Marcos, they know about David and they know about Willian – when we are taking set-pieces it is mainly me and them. Emmy (Emerson) has got a decent free-kick. Someone the fans might not know about is Callum Hudson-Odoi, he has been working on free-kicks a lot and concentrating on technique with Gianfranco Zola. I can see that when he is back and has had more training, he will be able to showcase his free-kick ability.
 

Who is most active on social media and who should fans follow?

It has got to be either David or Willian, they are active in connecting with the fans. I am sure the fans probably follow many of the players but I would say they should follow Reece James, as a young lad you can see is going to have a future with the club


If you could book any music act to play at Under the Bridge [the venue at Stamford Bridge], who would it be and which players would you try to convince to come with you?

Can I choose someone dead or alive? If I can, I’ll choose Bob Marley. I would take Ethan Ampadu because he has hair like him.
 

Who did you eat lunch with at Cobham last season?

We all came in at different times because we trained in the afternoon. Mainly because we live very close, it was me eating with Zappa.

And the question from Olivier Giroud – which food do you prefer, French gastronomy or English food?

I like roast dinners from my mum, so I will say English food.

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