Joey Barton has revealed that the reason Ross Barkley refused to move to Chelsea on transfer deadline day was that manager Antonio Conte switched off his phone.
Barkley’s Chelsea link was heavily talked about on the day with some even claiming that he had undergone medical – something which the player later denied.
But according to Barton, Barkley refused because he was not given any clarification on his potential Blues role.
“I heard a really interesting thing about what happened with the Ross Barkley transfer.” Barton told TalkSport. “Conte turned his phone off and Barkley’s representatives were trying to contact him.
“He wanted to say: ‘Look, where am I going to play’ and Conte turned his phone off. That is why Barkley got cold feet and never signed.
“He thought: ‘Well, if the manager isn’t answering the phone to me he clearly doesn’t want me’, and that is why he went back to Everton.”
The Blues were heavily hit by the loss of Nemanja Matic to Manchester United, but spent no less than £57 million on transfer deadline day to total their key signings to five this summer.
It is still believed that they will go after Barkley during the January transfer window as the player’s contract runs out at the end of this season.