Everton will travel to Leicester City for a key Premier League clash but will have to make more adjustments to the squad after injuries have continued to hamper Marco Silva’s attempt to dig the club out of the hole it finds itself in.
Speaking during the pre-match press conference earlier today, Silva confirmed that club captain Seamus Coleman would miss the game with an undisclosed injury. The veteran fullback has been displaced in recent weeks by on-loan Djibril Sidibe so might not be missed too badly on Sunday.
Additionally, midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin and forward Theo Walcott are the latest additions to the walking wounded, with Silva expressing that both are “big doubts” to play this weekend.
Fabian Delph has been training with the squad but has struggled to shake off his hamstring issue and is lacking match fitness as well.
“Bernard is working with the team and did a full session yesterday morning,. It is the type of injury where he needs to build confidence and work more days with the team to see how he will react. He is getting better every day and it is possible Bernard will be able to play soon.
“It will be difficult for Fabian to be fit. Let’s see how he will be the next few days. Morgan is a big doubt for the match, Theo the same. And more bad news is that, unfortunately for us, Coleman will be out as well.”
Silva has reverted to using Schneiderlin and Tom Davies as his midfield pivots with Beni Baningime as cover, but the youngster also picked up an injury midweek lining up for the U21s. Jean-Philippe Gbamin and Andre Gomes are out with long-term injuries and if Delph has not recovered in time, Everton could have a situation where they have no defensive midfielders left in the squad to start the game against the second-placed Foxes.
The only players he would have available to him that can play in the middle would be Davies, Sigurdsson, Alex Iwobi and youngster Dennis Adeniran - not an enviable task trying to slow down the James Maddison-led Foxes with that motley crew.
Things don’t get better further up the pitch either, with Bernard back in full training but little match fitness, which means he’s likely going to be on the bench. If Walcott does miss out then Anthony Gordon could make his full Premier League debut for the Blues in the starting lineup on the left and Richarlison switching to the right.