Everton manager Roberto Martinez would be 'more than welcome' at Barcelona, says Gerard Deulofeu

The Spaniard has long been earmarked as a future Barcelona manager

Gerard Deulofeu believes Everton manager Roberto Martinez would be "more than welcome" at Barcelona.

Deulofeu spent last season on loan at Goodison Park and helped Martinez's side secure a fifth-place Barclays Premier League finish and Europa League qualification.

The Toffees were only pipped to fourth place by Arsenal in the final few weeks of the season and Martinez's instant success on Merseyside - following his switch from Wigan the previous summer - saw him touted by some as a future Barcelona manager.

While stopping short of suggesting that Martinez has what it takes to succeed in the Nou Camp dugout, 20-year-old forward Deulofeu was full of praise for his former boss.

Asked if he could see his compatriot managing at Barca or if he thought he was good enough to do so, Deulofeu said: "It is difficult to say.

"I had one lovely year with him, which was a great experience. He helped me a lot.

"If one day he came to Barcelona, he would be more than welcome and it would be good for him."

Everton broke their transfer record this week by splashing out £28million on Chelsea's Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku, another player who excelled while on loan with the Toffees last term.

And Deulofeu has backed his former team-mate to continue shining for the Merseysiders.

"I think Lukaku is a really great footballer - he helped Everton last year very much indeed," Deulofeu said.

"He has huge quality and I think he will do very well at Everton this season.

"If Chelsea decided to sell Lukaku, it is because they have their reasons.

"The only thing I can say is that I wish the best for him - I am happy for him to go to Everton because he is going to have a great season, which will help him a lot."

Romelu Lukaku is presented by Roberto Martinez as an Everton player following his £28m move Romelu Lukaku is presented by Roberto Martinez as an Everton player following his £28m move  

Following his successful stint in English football, Deulofeu is hoping to break into the Barcelona first team during the forthcoming season.

Such an achievement would be no mean feat given the plethora of attacking options available at the Catalan club, but Deulofeu has immense confidence in his own ability.

"I don't think it is a particularly difficult season (to break through)," the Spain international said.

"I believe in myself. I am very enthusiastic and I am going to try as hard as I can to show everybody that I can play for the first team."

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