Ross Barkley became a Chelsea player when he moved to Stamford Bridge from Everton in January 2018. He signed a five-and-a-half-year contract and was given the number 8 shirt.
Barkley arrived with a wealth of experience for a player so young, having already made 150 Premier League appearances for Everton, as well as being named in England squads for both the World Cup and European Championships.
His versatility ensures he can play just behind the striker, in a deeper midfield role or in an advanced wide position, with his ability to get on the ball and create chances one of the player’s biggest strengths.
Barkley joined Everton at the age of 11 and quickly caught the eye due to his strength, desire and outstanding technical qualities.
His Everton debut arrived on the opening day of the 2011/12 campaign and early on in his career he also spent time on loan at Sheffield Wednesday and Leeds United.
Barkley scored his first Everton goal on the opening day of the 2013/14 season and after being given a key role in the Toffees’ midfield, the consistency and quality of his displays ensured he was named in the England squad for the World Cup in Brazil that summer.
The 2015/16 campaign was Barkley’s most fruitful in terms of goals scored, with the midfielder netting 14 times.
He registered his first England goal in a 6-0 Euro 2016 qualifying win over San Marino and was subsequently included in the squad for the finals.
Last season, Barkley was a regular in the Everton midfield and created more goalscoring opportunities for team-mates than any other English player in the Premier League, as well as chipping in with six goals of his own.
After signing for the Chelsea, Barkley made his debut when he came on for the injured Willian in the first half of our League Cup semi-final second leg against Arsenal. The midfielder was then handed his first start for the club in a home game against Bournemouth. Injury then ruled him out for almost three months, but he was back in the matchday squad before the end of the season and looked lively in the hour he played in our final league game at Newcastle.
After a solid pre-season, Barkley started our opening-day win at Huddersfield on the left-hand side of a new-look midfield, with Jorginho playing deep and N'Golo Kante further forward on the right.
Over the early part of the campaign it was one of either Barkley or Mateo Kovacic selected to play alongside Jorginho and Kante and the former Everton man impressed when called upon, with the quality of his performances earning him and England recall.
After scoring his first Chelsea goal in a 3-0 win at Southampton, having also teed up Eden Hazard for the opener, Barkley then fired home a dramatic late equaliser in a 2-2 draw against Manchester United.
A week later, at Burnley, he supplied a superb pass from which Alvaro Morata broke the deadlock and scored the second of our four goals on the day with a wonderful left-footed drive from distance.
After representing England through the younger age groups, Barkley earned his first senior cap in 2013 when he came on in a World Cup qualifier against Moldova at Wembley. The midfielder was subsequently named in the squad for the finals and came off the bench in England's opening game, a 2-1 defeat to Italy. He then completed the full game as the Three Lions drew 0-0 against Costa Rica in their final match of the tournament.
Barkley scored his first international goal in a 6-0 Euro 2016 qualifier against San Marino, and although he was selected in the squad for the finals, he didn't feature.
Barkley missed out on selection for the 2018 World Cup squad but his impressive early-season form at club level led to an international recall for the UEFA Nations League and he started every game, including the memorable away win against Spain, as England topped their group to reach the finals.