Ronald Koeman to do 'everything' in attempt to keep Ross Barkley at Everton

The midfielder's current contract is set to expire in 16 months time, with talks yet to open between the club and his representatives over a new deal

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Ronald Koeman has promised that he will do “everything” within his power to keep Ross Barkley at Everton, as the club plans contract negotiations with the midfielder’s representatives.

The 23-year-old’s current deal expires in 16 months’ time and, with talks regarding renewed terms yet to begin, speculation has grown about Barkley’s long-term future.

An out-of-sorts Barkley was regularly left out of Everton’s starting line-up by Koeman earlier in the season, but he has since regained his manager’s trust.

Koeman now insists that he has no intention of allowing the England international to leave Goodison Park and, ahead of West Bromwich Albion’s visit on Saturday, the club are ready to negotiate.

“There are players who finish the contract at the end of next year, and he's one of them,” Koeman said. “We will do everything to keep Ross. The talks are planned.”

Everton’s top scorer Romelu Lukaku is another player whose future remains up in the air. Last month, Mino Raiola, Lukaku’s agent, claimed that a deal was “99.9 per cent” done, having said the same in December.

Koeman confirmed that the Belgium international has still not put pen to paper on new terms, but added: “I heard it is close."

Asked whether a show of commitment to the club from Lukaku would help bring players to the club in the summer, the Dutchman said: "In football you don't get guarantees.

“What will happen for next season will be for next season. It is not the right time to talk about next season.”