Gerard Deulofeu would have no interest in leaving Everton for Barcelona should the La Liga champions activate a buy-back clause in the 22-year-old's contract. The Spain international moved to Goodison Park permanently last summer, but could yet return to the Nou Camp should the Catalans meet his asking price.
Toffees boss Roberto Martinez confirmed earlier in the season that Barca were free to sign Deulofeu for £6.3m ($9.1m) this summer or £8.4m in the subsequent two transfer windows – throwing the player's long-term future at the club into major doubt. Those concerns have been accentuated by a spell out of the first team during the second half of the campaign, which has coincided with a run of one league win in Everton's last eight games.
But despite potentially having the opportunity to return to Barcelona in the near future, a move back to his homeland does not interest Deulofeu, who is more focused on digging his side out of their current plight. Everton face Liverpool in the Merseyside derby before taking on Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-final.
"A lot, because all the time I say I love Everton, I love the fans," Delofeu responded when asked about his admiration for the team, according to Sky Sports. "We have a chance in the FA Cup and we need to take this chance. But I love Everton and for the moment I am a player for Everton but for the future I do not know. I'm so happy here.
"I think we played well in the first half of the season, but I think we concede a lot of goals. When we are winning 1-0 or 2-0, maybe we don't take responsibility together and say: 'Now it is time for defence together and no conceding'. Now we are in 11th position and it is so difficult to arrive at the European positions. It's difficult because all the teams in the Premier League are difficult to play against."
Some of Barcelona's recent troubles, which have seen them lose their last three league games in a row – the latest slip-up coming against Valencia and saw Atletico Madrid draw level on the points at the top – has been attributed to the lack of options – particularly in wide positions – available to manager Luis Enrique. Though Deulofeu would solve those issues, it is uncertain whether he is ready for the pressure that comes with playing for one of the biggest clubs in the world.
Deulofeu's fortunes this season have mirrored his club's, with the player starting with four goals and 10 assists in his first 21 appearances of the season, but the turn of the year has seen Martinez often overlook the youngster. Everton's loss of form has seen them drop into the bottom half, but Deulofeu has not lost confidence in Martinez.
"The manager's work is so good," the La Masia youth product added. "We need to stay altogether and all take responsibility, because the manager does not play on the pitch. Yes, it is a difficult position, but now is no time to think about this, we have a nice week with the derby and the chance to reach the FA Cup final. In my opinion I am happy with my coach.
"This week is the most important, because the results have been bad this season, and we stay in a bad position, and we have a chance in the FA Cup. It's so important, and we need to go to the semi-final with confidence, and first we need to play at Anfield together, to win and take three points."