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Why Leighton Baines should not immediately replace Brendan Galloway for Everton

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The first choice full back should not immediately return to the Everton first team while the youngster impresses in his absence.

Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Leighton Baines should not immediately return to the Everton first team upon his return from injury with Brendan Galloway performing so well.

Baines has been a constant in the Everton side for a number of years, his partnership with Steven Pienaar on the left hand side having been one of the best for the last decade.

An injury before the start of the season has seen him miss the start of this campaign though, with him not expected back for at least another month.

While his injury was considered a blow at the time, it has proved to be anything but with youngster Brendan Galloway deputising in his absence and impressed considerably.

Despite his inexperience, Galloway has looked both solid defensively; with him once again enjoying another stellar afternoon in the 1-1 draw with rivals Liverpool.

While he has not contributed as significantly as Baines going forward, he has been anything but a disappointment, with his cross for Steven Naismith's opener in the 3-1 win over Chelsea still standing strong in the memory.

Indeed, the entire Everton defence has enjoyed a more stellar start than they did last season despite his introduction into it. Bringing Baines back in immediately could disrupt that settled unit.

Similarly, removing a youngster who is thriving in his new found role, and improving all the time as a result of it, would not only be harsh, but potentially something that could be damaging to his so far rapid development with the senior side.

For those reasons alone, Baines should not instantly return to the side when he returns from injury.

Aside from those, not introducing him immediately allows him to slowly build up his fitness and match speed once again, without the pressure of knowing the side are relying on him to perform.

That would be beneficial to Everton, who wouldn't be risking their first choice and could bring him back slowly, an ideal situation for both club and player.

For now, he should not return immediately with Galloway impressing. When he does, he will know he now has firm competition for his place, something that is also good news for both Everton and Baines.