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Martinez hails Barkley return

Last Updated: Mon, 10 Mar 2014 13:19

Everton manager Roberto Martinez was particularly delighted with the display of Ross Barkley in the FA Cup loss at Arsenal on Saturday.

It was the attacking midfielder's first start since he broke a toe at the beginning of February but at the weekend he looked to be back to the sort of form which put him firmly in the frame to go to Brazil this summer.

Barkley set up Everton's equaliser in the 4-1 defeat with a lung-busting break and a great cross which was eventually bundled home and boss Roberto Martinez says the midfielder is looking refreshed.

"I thought he was a real threat, especially on the counter-attack," Martinez said.

"He had two or three incidents that, if we had been a little bit sharper, we could have taken advantage of.

"He looked powerful and fresh again after the injury. Overall, I thought his contribution was very good and he was back to his normal self."

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