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Barkley returns in time for pre-season tour

ESPN staff
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Ross Barkley excelled at Everton last season prompting a World Cup call-up © Getty Images
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Everton will welcome the return of England midfielder Ross Barkley ahead of their pre-season tour of Thailand on Thursday.

The 20 year old was part of Roy Hodgson's squad during a disappointing World Cup campaign, featuring in every group game, and has been linked with a move to a host of clubs including Manchester City.

However, Irish full-back Seamus Coleman is set to miss the tour after withdrawing from Everton's friendly against Tranmere Rovers as a precaution over a hamstring concern.

Speaking to the club's television channel evertontv, manager Roberto Martinez said: "He will miss the Thailand trip to give proper consideration to his injury, for proper treatment and to remove any chance of aggravating that feeling that he had.

"We don't really know the extent of the injury yet but it is sometimes a little bit of a setback that comes with pre-season preparation and getting a lot of volume into the bodies. Hopefully it is going to be just a minor setback."

Coleman, who made 36 league appearances last season, will be joined on the sidelines by long-term absentees Bryan Oviedo and Arouna Kone.

Meanwhile, former Manchester United midfielder Darron Gibson made his first appearance in nine months, appearing for 45 minutes against Tranmere.

The 26 year old suffered serious cruciate knee ligament damage during Ireland's victory over Kazakhstan last October.

"Darron looks really strong," Martinez added. "It's been very frustrating for him to spend such a long time away from the football pitch. But when you see him using that technical ability he has and the quality he brings to the side, he is like a fresh player coming back to us."

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