Ross Barkley Aston Villa 2020-21Getty

Barkley braced for Chelsea return as Smith reveals Aston Villa transfer stance

Ross Barkley will be heading back to Chelsea this summer, with Aston Villa manager Dean Smith revealing that a permanent deal for the on-loan midfielder has not been discussed by his side.

The Villans took the England international playmaker on a season-long deal in the summer of 2020, with Frank Lampard sanctioning a move away from Stamford Bridge for the talented 27-year-old.

A promising start to his time in the Midlands bode well for Barkley, but he has struggled for consistency throughout the 2020-21 campaign and will be returning to his parent club when a deal at Villa comes to a close.

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What has been said?

Villa boss Smith told reporters when asked if an extended stay for Barkley will be explored: "No, Ross Barkley came in on loan at the start of the season.

"Obviously, Frank Lampard was the manager at the time we brokered a deal to bring him in on loan. 

"He’s got another two years left on his contract at Chelsea and that’s not been discussed at all."

How has Barkley fared at Villa?

Ross Barkley Aston Villa 2020-21Getty

Having struggled for regular game time as part of a star-studded squad at Stamford Bridge, a loan move was always expected to be put in place this season.

Barkley jumped at the chance to join Villa, with there plenty of potential be found in pairing him with Jack Grealish.

The former Everton star opened his goal account for the Villans on his debut, as Smith's side secured a stunning 7-2 win over reigning Premier League champions Liverpool on October 4.

The target was also found in his next outing against Leicester, but there has been just one further effort since then. Across 20 outings in the English top flight for Villa, Barkley has registered three goals and one assist.

More was expected and he will face another big decision on his future when returning to west London over the summer.

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