Ross Barkley will be hoping he has done enough to make Frank Lampard’s Chelsea starting XI for this evening’s game at West Ham.
Named on the substitutes’ bench at Leicester City on Sunday, the midfielder proved to be the difference between the sides at the King Power Stadium after netting the winner in the 63rd minute.
Signed from Everton in January 2018 with his deal at Goodison Park running down, the 26-year-old has divided the opinion of fans in his two-and-a-half years in west London.
Shining for the team on a handful of occasions, the England international has struggled to display the form that saw him make a big name for himself on Merseyside on a regular basis.
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Barkley has performed well for the Europa League holders since his start against Tottenham back in February and appears to be getting back to his best.
Excellent against Liverpool and former club Everton prior to the break in play, the talented player has made an impact in all three of Chelsea’s game since the restart, notably netting the winner at Leicester on Sunday.
While the game against the Foxes proved that Barkley still has a big role to play at Stamford Bridge, his 45-minute cameo also highlighted what he desperately needs to improve on.
Chelsea had a number of opportunities to put the FA Cup quarter-final tie to bed as Leicester looked for a late equaliser, with the midfielder guilty of some sloppy play in the final third.
Winning the ball in midfield to spark a counter-attack in the 88th minute, the Blues had four players on two just outside the box but they failed to make it count.
With Pedro in acres of space to the right of him and Tammy Abraham and Ruben Loftus-Cheek to his left, Barkley passed to the latter but the ball was behind his fellow England international.
Although Loftus-Cheek did well to get the…