Ronald Koeman’s regimen of ‘tough love’ for Ross Barkley has been paying off dividends in spades for Everton, with the midfielder hitting a rich vein of form and resulting in an England call-up earlier today as well.
There has been some chatter about the player’s future too, with him entering the last year of his current contract next season, and when asked about it today, Koeman was pretty firm and decisive with his choice of words.
“I think every situation is different. Ross is a boy from Everton, and what we need to show to him is the best reasons to stay. Of course his situation is different because Ross is running out, next season is his last year of his contract.
"Football is a business, you make decisions. He needs to sign a new contract or you sell the player."
Koeman insisted this wasn’t an ultimatum to the player.
"It was no ultimatum. But football is a business.
"I think the player needs to understand this, it’s not an ultimatum but I spoke to Ross about a new contract and it’s up to the board to get that over the line. If not then the player could see a new future for himself, but that is normal, it’s not strange talk.
"At Southampton we had Nathaniel Clyne, he did not have a new contract and we sold him.
"The player has to understand that if he doesn’t sign a new contract, he needs to make a decision for the club so that they know what happens next year.
"Ultimatum is strong, I don’t like that word."