• Barkley joined Chelsea for a fee of £15m plus add-ons on a five-year deal.
  • Barton says he cannot see the former Everton man starting games.

Joey Barton has expressed doubts as to whether new Chelsea signing Ross Barkley can fit into the team under manager Antonio Conte.

The former Everton midfielder put pen to paper on a five-and-a-half-year contract with the reigning Premier League champions after the two clubs agreed to a fee of £15m plus add-ons.

With just six months left on his contract, the Blues were able to secure a swift cut-price deal for Barkley.

Barton believes it could prove to be an even bigger bargain if the 24-year-old can return to his old form that saw former Everton manager Roberto Martinez call him "the best English talent he had seen" back in 2014.

"It is a good signing because £15m for Ross Barkley, if he can get back to the form he has got, is actually very cheap," Barton told talkSPORT.

"Everton have [also] got a good deal because you had a player running his contract out who wasn't going to sign a new one so you were going to lose him on a free."

However, Barton believes there are two issues surrounding Barkley at Stamford Bridge. The first is the job security of Conte, who has already conceded that Chelsea will not be defending their Premier League crown this season.

The second is a potential clash of style with the Italian manager as Barton cannot see his fellow Merseyside native starting games.

"The issue is going to firstly be whether Conte stays at Chelsea beyond the end of the season," Barton added. "If they don't win the title or progress in the Champions League, there could be question marks.

"We all remember the Roma game not so long ago when he looked like he was teetering. There's David Luiz's issue with him, he was maybe going to lose the dressing room - I don't know what is going on.

"And I can't see Ross Barkley starting for that Chelsea side. Drinkwater has come in and done well and then it is kind of Hazard and Morata beyond that. I don't really see where Ross Barkley fits in to the current Chelsea style under Conte."

Ross Barkley
Barkley has not played a single minute of first-team football this season Getty Images