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Ancelotti: Allan and Iwobi could make Brighton trip

The Everton boss may have some, if not all, of his current absentees back in time for Monday’s game

West Bromwich Albion v Everton - Premier League
Both Allan and Alex Iwobi missed Monday’s draw with Crystal Palace through injury
Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Carlo Ancelotti has said Allan and Alex Iwobi could return for Everton at Brighton on Monday, but a number of others remain unavailable.

Both players missed the 1-1 home draw with Crystal Palace, but Ancelotti said both have since returned to training.

The Everton manager added that Jordan Pickford resumed training today following his own recent injury, but he, like Fabian Delph and Bernard, will not be ready in time for Monday’s trip to the Amex Stadium.

Speaking at Friday’s pre-match press conference, he said:

“We are checking Allan. He trained normally this morning, but we have three days to see how it goes. Maybe he can be available.

“Iwobi will be available. Jordan Pickford started training today, but I think he’s not 100 per cent, and we don’t want to take a risk for this game. Delph and Bernard are following their individual programmes.”

Ancelotti added that André Gomes, who was substituted in the first half of the Palace draw with injury, will also miss the Brighton clash due to his hamstring injury.

He offered an update on Abdoulaye Doucouré, who has not featured since March 4 due to a fractured foot, saying he expects he will return to action before the end of the campaign next month:

“He will play again [this season]. Doucouré had a scan last week. Everything was OK. He’s going to have the next scan in three weeks and if the scan is OK, he can start to train.”

On Monday’s draw with Palace, which saw Everton pay for missing a host of chances by conceding a late equaliser, Ancelotti said he hopes his side heed this cautionary tale.

He reiterated Everton, currently eighth, are still in the thick of the battle for European qualification, and that learning from their mistakes against Palace will stand them in good stead against Brighton:

“The biggest lesson is that, when we have the possibility to kill the game, we have to kill the game.

“In football, until the last second, you never know what’s going to happen. Unfortunately, we conceded a goal in the last period, which we were not used to.

“We have to accept the result and also keep the performance, which was much better compared to the past games, and try to win the next game.

“It is a big fight for the European positions. We are there. We could do better, yes; at home, we could do much better. But we have to say we had a fantastic run away; this is the reason why we are in the fight now.”

Brighton have won plenty of plaudits for their style of play, but have struggled for wins and currently sit 16th.

They are only six points clear of the relegation zone, and while Ancelotti has been impressed by them, he urged Everton to take the game to them, while reminding them of their defensive responsibilities, too:

“Brighton is playing good football. They have a clear idea - they like to play, it’s true.

“We have to defend properly and use our quality. We don’t want to play a game to wait, to try to do something on the counter-attack.

“We would like to have control of the game with our quality, with our ability, and of course, taking into consideration that defending well will be important.”