Manchester City players were shocked by the decision to loan Gareth Barry out to Everton, according to Toffees full-back Leighton Baines.
The former Aston Villa midfielder showed his class in Everton's defeat of Chelsea on Saturday with a man-of-the-match performance.
He is on a season-long loan from Eastlands after being told he was not part of new manager Manuel Pellegrini's plans.
And Baines says many of of 32-year-old's former City teammates in the England camp were disappointed to see him leave the Etihad.
“I’ve known Gareth through the England setup and I’ve always rated him really highly,” Baines said.
“The City lads on the last international break were saying that they can’t believe that they haven’t kept him and he doesn’t play for them. That says enough about his worth for any team he plays in.
“Everyone rates him who he plays with and he has come in and shown what a great asset he is going to be for us.
“We’ve seen straight away what he can give to the team.
“I’m sure Gaz will tell you that he has not played as much as he would have liked and he has already produced a performance like that. If he plays like that most weeks, he is going to add to the team," he added.
Saturday's performance from Barry included a brilliant last-gasp tackle to prevent Samuel Eto'o from scoring and the 1-0 win was Roberto Martinez's first Premier League victory as Everton boss.
And Baines highlighted Chelsea's attacking intent as a reason for the Toffees ability to finally record a win after three draws in the league.
“A large part of that [win] was because we played someone who came to try and beat us," he said.
"The sides that we have played against have sat back and kept men behind the ball and tried to frustrate us. They have been difficult to break down.
“A side like Chelsea are going to come here to try and win the game. They are challenging for titles. It made the game more open and probably made for a better watch.”
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