Rafa Benitez takes his side to the Etihad Stadium as Everton resume their Premier League campaign after the last international break of 2021. The Toffees have been winless in their last five league games with their last victory coming back in September.
A major reason for this dip in form and consistency is the myriad of injuries that piled up in the short period. Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison, Seamlus Coleman, Abdoulaye Doucoure, Jean-Philippe Gbamin, Yerry Mina, Fabian Delph, Alex Iwobi, Lucas Digne and Andre Gomes have been out at some point of time in the last five games.
While the likes of Richarlison, Coleman, Delph, Digne, Iwobi and Gbamin have returned, uncertainty over the fitness of DCL, Doucoure, Mina and Gomes still continues to cause concerns. With the Toffees facing the Premier League champions, Benitez would have wanted to have a strong squad at his disposal.
Ahead of the Man City clash on Sunday, the Spanish manager gave an injury update on the quartet that was sidelined. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much respite for the team and the fans.
Everton Injury News
“To be fair, all of them [DCL, Doucoure, Gomes and Mina] are progressing well but are not ready yet. The squad is fine and the training sessions have been intense. We know we’ll play against a good team but we are confident” (via Club’s official YouTube channel)
Gomes picked up a calf injury against QPR while Mina has been unavailable since the October international break. Doucoure suffered a metatarsal fracture meanwhile Calvert-Lewin has been sidelined since September with a quadriceps injury and his return date still remains unknown. Benitez was further questioned if there is a time frame for the return of Doucoure and Calvert-Lewin.
Each one is different. I said before, they are getting better, but you have to be sure that they are 100% fine. Doucoure has a metatarsal injury, something that has a timeframe, the bone has to heal. I think one week-two weeks, he can be fine if does not have any problems. For Dominic at least two-three weeks we have to wait, he is progressing well but still needs some time.
With Calvert-Lewin unavailable, Richarlison is likely to spearhead the attack. Delph’s renaissance against Tottenham Hotspur makes him a strong candidate to start alongside Allan. The Toffees face four out of the traditional top six in the next six weeks and Benitez will be banking on the returns of Docuoure and Calvert-Lewin to boost the first team.
What will be the result of Everton’s clash against Manchester City?