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Stoke loan cast-off defender Martina

Defender to spend season at bet365 Stadium after difficult first campaign on Merseyside

Everton v Southampton - Premier League
Martina failed to make an impression after moving from Southampton last summer
Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Everton defender Cuco Martina has joined Stoke City on a season-long loan.

Martina, 28, joined the Blues in July 2017 on a three-year contract after being released by Southampton, reuniting with his former Saints boss Ronald Koeman.

But the Curacao international will spend the 2018-19 campaign with the Potters after he was one of four Everton players told by manager Marco Silva to train away from the first team [Liverpool Echo].

He was linked with a deadline-day move to Middlesbrough which fell through, while Everton were last week reportedly looking for £2 million for the full-back, but are now open to a temporary deal [Liverpool Echo].

He featured as a second-half substitute in the Blues’ first two pre-season friendlies - the 22-0 drubbing of ATV Irdning and the 1-1 draw at Bury - but has not been involved since.

Though naturally a right-back, Martina deputised primarily at left-back during Leighton Baines’ four-month calf injury in his debut season at Goodison Park, making 28 appearances.

But he often struggled in the Premier League, and with the signing of Lucas Digne and the emergence of young full-backs Jonjoe Kenny and Antonee Robinson, was likely to find himself starved of game time this season.

He will join up at Stoke with former Blues teammate Ashley Williams; the Welsh central defender joined the Championship side on loan two weeks ago after also being exiled by Silva.

Martina may soon be followed out of the Goodison exit door by Muhamed Besic and Yannick Bolasie, who have both been linked with moves away before the European transfer deadline and EFL loan window shuts.