Everton boss lauds Baines

Everton manager Roberto Martinez believes he has two of the best full-backs in he country and insists Leighton Baines can play a key role for England at the World Cup.

Last Updated: 06/03/14 at 16:40 Post Comment

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Baines was rested for England's friendly victory over Denmark having already been assured of his place in Roy Hodgson's squad heading to Brazil.

Baines and right-back Seamus Coleman - who is Everton's joint second-highest scorer this season with six goals - are giving Martinez plenty of cause for celebration.

Martinez said: "I think the full-back position is the most demanding in world football - you need to be able to defend in a unit, one v one, and full-backs are probably the players who can dislodge defensive set-ups and become vital in your attacking play. We are blessed with the qualities we have.

"Leighton has been playing really well of late and it was a great opportunity for the England manager to see other options (against Denmark) and we are delighted he was rested and can carry on preparing for the game against Arsenal.

"In the case of Leighton he has been such a consistent performer everyone knows what a player he is developing into and what he can bring.

"When you go into a major tournament experience plays a big part and Leighton is probably in the best moment of his career.

"I think he is in the peak of his career to help the national team and from our point of view to help our club.

"I am excited about the ending of the season with Leighton's form and making sure we are as strong as we can be."

Phil Jagielka is not expected to make the FA Cup quarter-final at Arsenal, but fellow centre-back Antolin Alcaraz is fit after more injury problems.

"It is very unlikely Phil Jagielka will be involved. If the game was tomorrow (Friday) he wouldn't be available," added Martinez.

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

m not sure about this distance covered malarky, plus that stat comes with *since February attached to it, that's just 1 month. I mean I have 27 open cases I'm 'working on' at the moment but believe me others with 10 cases work harder than I do. I just got back from a pub lunch, scampi and chips (+4 pints) in case you were wondering.

hurler
Wenger defends Ozil

C

isse should have appealed and explained that it was just a retaliation, just like Matic did. Apparently the FA are ok with retaliation.

Triangler
Cisse accepts FA charge

L

ove this guy. He's one of the few surviving players that I remember so vividly from Football Italia and Gazetta on Saturday mornings and Sunday afternoons.

HarryBoulton
Francesco Totti - The King Of Rome

Footer 365

Ryan Giggs enjoys working with Louis van Gaal; plays down rift reports

Manchester United assistant manager Ryan Giggs has played down talk of a rift with Louis van Gaal and hailed their "great working relationship".

Mesut Ozil defended by Arsene Wenger after Paul Scholes criticism

Arsene Wenger claims Paul Scholes "would have loved to play with Mesut Ozil".

Football Association names Martin Glenn as its new chief executive

The Football Association has named Martin Glenn as its new chief executive.

Mail Box

Why All The Hate For Robin Van Persie?

One Mailboxer can't work out why everyone is having a pop at Robin van Persie. Plus FA Cup anticipation, changing relegation, a Friday song and more Totti love...

Is Sissoko's Neck Very Distinctive?

Moussa Sissoko features in a really quite bizarre Distinctive Physical Features XI while we have mails on sexism, Angel Di Maria and Francesco Totti. Ramdom.

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company