Midfielder is yet to make his mind up on next step once his lucrative contract with Manchester City expires next month
Everton FC must persuade Gareth Barry to reject a move to Major League Soccer if they are to sign him on a permanent basis this summer.
The influential midfielder is yet to make his mind up on the next step once his lucrative contract with Manchester City expires next month.
Arsenal, Tottenham and AS Monaco have all been linked with the 33-year-old, but the ECHO understands that Barry is only weighing up two options; either staying at Goodison Park or heading Stateside.
One possibility for Barry is to become the star player and captain for City’s forthcoming MLS franchise New York City FC, which is set to launch in 2015.
However the former England international would not be short on offers from other American clubs should he decide to take his young family to the USA this summer instead.
Any potential permanent move to Merseyside would not be hampered by wage demands, with Barry fully aware the Blues could not match the bumper £125,000-a-week salary he has earned during his time at the Etihad stadium.
Everton’s Gareth Barry (left) and Fulham’s William Kvist Jorgensen in action
Money is not believed to be the major motivating factor in the defensive midfielder’s thinking though, rather whether or not to experience playing abroad before he hangs up his boots.
However, the Blues hope that his enjoyable spell at Goodison, when he has become a popular figure in the dressing room and close pals with midfield colleague James McCarthy may cause him to abandon the idea of crossing the pond or at least delay it for another season.
One compromise would be for Barry to agree a one-year deal with the Blues, leaving him free to join New York the season after next.
Either way, it remains to be seen whether tomorrow’s trip to Hull City will be Barry’s final appearance in a Royal Blue shirt.
But whatever happens the Everton players will be under instructions to treat the fixture without sentiment, but the same intensity as every other game this term.
Roberto Martinez wants to thank the club’s ‘sensational’ fanbase by signing off with a win over the Wembley-bound Tigers.
There were only two away Premier League games where Everton did not sell out their full allocation of tickets (Click to find tickets) – one being a 350-mile round trip for a midweek evening clash at Newcastle United.
“The last game of the season is in front of our away fans, who have been sensational,” said Martinez.
“We want to thank them for their efforts and the way they have been allowing us to be at ease in every away ground.
“The performance has to be for them and we are well aware that Hull will try to prepare for the game knowing they then have to prepare for the FA Cup final as well. It’s going to be an interesting game and we want to finish the season as strongly as we can.
“I know the players will be making sure they use the game to put themselves in the starting line-up for the final. They won’t under-perform or take the game lightly.”
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