Chelsea snapped up Ross Barkley for £15million (BBC) in January 2018 and at times he’s looked like a potential bargain addition at Stamford Bridge.
After an injury-hit start with the Blues, he has become a first-team regular this season under Italian boss Maurizio Sarri.
The central midfielder built up his reputation with Everton as a creative playmaker and many have tipped him to be the next Frank Lampard in England.
He enjoyed a brilliant three-game goalscoring streak in October this season in the Premier League and was buying into Sarri’s attacking philosophy.
But he’s gone completely off the boil since and finds himself lucky to still be getting regular minutes.
The 25-year-old has not scored outside of his three-game streak and is struggling to leave his impact on games, whether that be from starts or off the bench.
Barkley continues to get opportunities to impress due to the mixed form of loanee Mateo Kovacic, while academy graduate Ruben Loftus-Cheek is sidelined through injury.
According to the Sun, midfielder Loftus-Cheek may need an operation on his back and it’s been suggested he could miss the rest of the season.
Cesc Fabregas is another central midfielder out of the running and he’s made a permanent exit away from Stamford Bridge to Monaco.
There is a huge opportunity for Barkley to nail down his spot in a midfield three alongside Jorginho and N’Golo Kante, but he’s continuing to blow it with ineffective displays.
England international Barkley is at this best when he’s positive on the ball and direct with his play, but fans haven’t seen enough of that in the last month.
He surely can’t continue to keep getting chance after chance if his current form continues.