Football

Koeman: Barkley will leave Everton

But Toffees boss says there's no offer for Spurs-linked midfielder

Everton manager Ronald Koeman has confirmed Ross Barkley is set to leave the club after the player told the Dutchman he wants a new challenge.

The academy graduate, who is heavily linked to Tottenham, is in the final year of his contract and was told by Koeman he needed to make a decision on whether to accept the new deal on offer or be sold this summer.

Koeman revealed Barkley told him at the end of the campaign he was looking to move on.

"Ross told me at the end of the season he wanted another challenge," said Koeman, adding he "100 per cent" expects the 23-year-old to leave.

"His personal situation is really not so difficult: we made a good offer to him to sign a new contract, he declined that contract and told me that he is looking for a new challenge.

"It is his decision, I need to respect that and then we will see what happens but, what I heard from the board is there is not really an offer on the table for Ross.

"My priority is not Ross, with respect, it is his decision. I look more to other players. I knew (this) at the end of the season...

"Everyone knows what the situation is and that's enough, I don't talk any more about this."

Barkley is currently injured, having had surgery on a minor groin problem, and will be out for possibly the next month.

However, he will be expected to return to training as normal when he has recovered and Koeman has no plans to isolate him from the main group.

"He had his groin surgery last week and normally it takes three to four weeks before he is back," he added.

"He has one more year of contract and we work with respect for people and, if he is back after his surgery, he will be part of first-team sessions."

Asked whether he had noticed a change in the player since his return for pre-season, Koeman said: "No, he is the same."

Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola has confirmed Manchester City are "still looking" to add to their summer spending spree, although he refused to comment on the possibility of hijacking Real Madrid's move for Kylian Mbappe.

City have been the major shoppers in the transfer market after splashing out a English Premier League record total of £200m (S$355.5m) to bring Benjamin Mendy, Bernardo Silva, Kyle Walker, Ederson, Danilo and Douglas Luiz to the Etihad Stadium.

But it remains likely that they will continue their spree after being strongly linked with moves for Arsenal attacker Alexis Sanchez and Monaco's teenage striker Mbappe.

Mbappe has been on City's radar throughout the summer, although there have been strong suggestions in Spain that Real have agreed a fee of £160m for the 18-year-old.

Ahead of this morning's (Singapore time) International Champions Cup encounter against Real Madrid in Los Angeles, Guardiola refused to comment on the speculation.

"They are Monaco and Arsenal players, so nothing to say," he said.

While he confirmed that City were still looking at options in the market, he was coy on whether another striker was on the agenda.

"We have the two exceptional forwards in Gabriel (Jesus) and Sergio (Aguero)," he said.

"We will see. The market finishes on Aug 31, which is not good for the managers.

"The competition (English Premier League) starts on Aug 12 and the market is still open. That is not good for all the clubs. We will wait until the end of the transfer window." - WIRE SERVICES

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