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Everton vs. Stoke City: Team News and Gamethread

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Clive Brunskill

Welcome to 2014 everyone, hope you all enjoyed imbibing your beverage of choice last night, and now we can celebrate properly with some football. Everton takes on Stoke City to open the second half of their campaign, and expectations are high for all three points.

As you may have heard, Phil Jagielka is out for fortnight with a hamstring injury, and it would not be a shock to see Stoke try to test the backline in his absence.

Leighton Baines is available, and with such a quick turnaround it will be interesting to see just how much Martinez decides to rely on him. Don't be shocked if he sees limited action, especially with a quality opponent in the FA Cup on Saturday.

Finally, what of Ross Barkley? He is rumored to be the subject of an immense bid from Manchester United, and we all know how visions of grandeur can cause a poor performance.

As always join in the comments below to follow the match, we'll post lineups when they become available. COYB!

Everton XI: Howard; Coleman, Stones, Alcaraz, Baines; McCarthy, Barry; Mirallas, Barkley, Pienaar; Lukaku.

Everton subs: Robles, Hibbert, Jelavic, Oviedo, Naismith, Osman, Vellios.

Stoke XI: Sorensen; Cameron, Shawcross (c), Wilson, Pieters; Walters, Nzonzi, Adam, Whelan, Assaidi; Crouch

Stoke subs: Butland, Muniesa, Pennant, Palacios, Jones, Arnautovic, Ireland