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Tranmere v Everton

Tuesday, 22 July 2014, 19:45

Friendly Match

Still no Gibson for Everton

Roberto Martinez has confirmed that neither Darron Gibson nor Antolin Alcaraz will feature for Everton against Chelsea.

Last Updated: 12/09/13 at 12:30 Post Comment

Gibson: Still a couple of weeks away from a first-team return

Gibson: Still a couple of weeks away from a first-team return

Everton midfielder Darron Gibson will not return to action in this weekend's Barclays Premier League clash with Chelsea despite resuming full training.

Gibson is yet to feature this term after suffering a knee injury in the Toffees' final pre-season friendly against Real Betis last month.

Defender Antolin Alcaraz, signed on a free transfer from Wigan in the summer, is also not yet ready to make his debut as he continues his recovery from a hernia operation.

Manager Roberto Martinez said: "Darron and Antolin are in training with the first team.

"Now it is a case of getting the match fitness. That could take a couple of weeks, depending on how they react.

"Darron and Antolin won't be fit for the weekend but they are not going to be too far away.

"For Darron, in a couple of weeks, he'll be getting really close."

Martinez will consider handing debuts to new signings James McCarthy and Gareth Barry for Chelsea's visit to Goodison Park.

The midfield pair were both signed on deadline day but McCarthy has trained little with the squad as yet due to international duty and also has a slight knock.

The other deadline day signing, Romelu Lukaku, will not be able to play against his parent club this weekend.

Martinez said: "It's been a real joy to see Gareth Barry around, with his daily standards.

"James McCarthy hasn't been able to train with the group yet, Romelu has been with us a couple of days.

"It is always great to have new faces being integrated into the group.

"I don't think it has been a difficult time for any of those players.

"It has been a good welcoming period. We can't wait to get the full squad working together."

Martinez has reported no other fitness concerns, aside from minor issues over McCarthy and Seamus Coleman.

He said: "We are getting the 15 players we had away back today.

"On paper it seems everyone is more or less fine. A couple have niggles or knocks - Seamus Coleman and James McCarthy after their game with the Republic of Ireland - but apart from those two everyone seems to be fully fit."


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