Sean Dyche is going to listen to his centre-forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s views on his fitness before deciding when the injured striker will return for Everton.
Calvert-Lewin’s injuries have almost become a trope for all the troubles that have afflicted the Blues’ over the last seasons as managers come and go and results keep declining.
The ex-England centre-forward has very rarely been fit and healthy for Everton over the last two seasons or so and has only managed just over sixty minutes in his current manager Dyche’s first game against Arsenal.
Since then he has been absent from the team once again and with a critical home fixture against Brentford coming up tomorrow afternoon, he is unavailable once more as the Blues’ search for a desperately needed win.
Now, it appears as though Dyche is going to take his striker’s own views into account when he is deciding when to bring Calvert-Lewin back into the side.
One of the things that has troubled me and I think many other Toffees’ supporters, is how much of DCL’s problems are genuinely physical and how much might be a psychological issue?
Has he become so spooked by his recurrent injuries and so is it possible that there is a mental barrier to him feeling ready to play?
I don’t want to push that theory too far but there does seem to be a brittleness to the player that is worrying.
At times too, he has seemed distracted by his off-the-field activities. There have been several modelling and advertising opportunities, which he has exploited.
That’s all fine and good and there’s nothing wrong with him trying to make the most financially of his image, however there was a suspiscion that he was perhaps at times more focused on those things than his football.
Anyway, whatever the truth or not of all that, Calvert-Lewin’s injury issues are a major and ongoing serious concern for Dyche and will probably prove a major, if not the, decisive reason why this team is relegated.
I’m not sure whether this approach of seeking his own self-diagnosis is going to help speed up his return to the team, let’s hope so. But, both player and manager will have to make some decisions soon or it will be too late for Everton.