Paul Merson has hit out at Ross Barkley’s omission from the current England squad.
Barkley has failed to make the squad since being unused member of the 23-man party taken to Euro 2016.
The 22-year-old has shown glimpses of his quality for Everton this term, and Merson believes Gareth Southgate has made a mistake in not selecting the midfielder.
“He had a blinder against West Ham and surely he’s going to be around for years to come. You’ve got to pick players like that for the future,” Merson wrote in his column for the Daily Star.
“If he was Spanish you can guarantee he’d already be playing regularly for Spain. We’re wasting his talent.
“Other countries must laugh at us when they see how we treat kids like Barkley. We complain about too many foreign players coming to play in the Premier League.
“But then we can’t find room in the England squad for one of the most talented young players we’ve got.
“Being in the England squad would help him because he’s got Wayne Rooney there to learn from.
“Sometimes Barkley is guilty of making bad decisions. But if Everton are patient with him and he gets a good run in the team it could start to work for him again.
“He has a good coach there now in Ronald Koeman who should be able to get the best out of him. But it’s time he was back in the England squad.”