Boss Relaxed Over Barry
Martinez reiterates plans for summer talks amid Arsenal link.
Roberto Martinez remains relaxed about the long-term future of loan signing Gareth Barry.
Arsenal are the latest club to be linked to the midfielder who has shone consistently at Everton since arriving on a season-long deal from Manchester City.
Barry’s contract with City expires in the summer and Blues boss Martinez says any talks of a permanent stay at Goodison Park will occur only at the end of the season – as per his agreement with the player.
Asked about the Gunners' reported interest at his press conference on Tuesday, Martinez said: "It doesn't change anything. I trust him implicitly.
"I enjoy working with him and I still think he's the best English player in that position and I'm just glad he's been able to show that at Everton, which could have a massive effect on him internationally.
"I'm glad there is talk because it means Gareth has been performing really well and there will be other options for him there. I still think the best for Everton and Gareth is to come.
"It's a hypothetical situation. All that matters is Gareth is fully fit, enjoying his football and being an important player at Everton Football Club. That's what we are enjoying at the moment. Everything else is not a concern at this time. He was sensational at the weekend."
Martinez went on to detail the reasons for bringing Barry to Merseyside and the goals they both set out to achieve.
He added: "With Gareth it was very clear from the beginning - he was a massive target of ours in the summer. We did everything to bring him to the Club and the relationship was to make sure he could go back to his best, enjoy his football and have a big role at Everton.
"That doesn't change. You saw the way he performed at the weekend. It's a joy to have him at the Club and his only focus now is to play as well as he can in every single game and I'm sure that the England squad could benefit from that level of performance.
"He was available in the summer for other clubs and he decided to come to Everton. We were very clear with what we wanted from Gareth - to put him in an environment where he could be important, we could use his experience and he could enjoy his football. That was always the case for this season.
"He has incredible human values. He's a person who needs to make footballing decisions. He's enjoyed an incredible career and is in a position that he can choose where his football happiness is going to be.
"At the end of the season, we will sit down and see if we've reached every single target we had and I'm sure Gareth is only focused on the games ahead and winning as many as we can for Everton."
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