The first international break of the season came pretty quickly after Everton had played just four games of the new season, so Monday's game at Goodison Park against Burnley will feel like another season opener with the Blues looking to make it two out of two at home.
Speaking during his press conference today, manager Rafa Benitez started off with an injury update on club captain Seamus Coleman who returned early from Republic of Ireland international duty with a hamstring issue.
“It was not very bad to be fair, so he can be available for Monday.
“The majority of the players are fine. We have two or three issues but Yerry Mina is training already and Ben Godfrey is also. Seamus will be available. Fabian Delph still has a problem with his shoulder.
“The others are coming back, Tom Davies also, so we are in a good situation at the moment.”
The question on everyone’s minds though is James Rodriguez, and if he is fit and available to play starting on Monday night.
“He’s training with the team, obviously we have been talking about his future and we had some clubs interested.
“He’s still here, he’s training with the rest of his teammates. For match fitness he needs to play games and needs to play games in a row, and at the moment he’s a little bit behind the others.”
Rafa added on how he was planning to reintegrate James into his squad.
“Obviously the team is doing well, the players they understand what we want to do. He has to understand that, we have to try to bring out the best from each player.
“In this case he has to adapt to the team and we will try to get the best from everyone.”
The Colombian superstar had been the subject of interest from Turkish side Istanbul Basaksehir, with media sources reporting that the player had rejected a move even if the two clubs would have been able to find an agreement.
“I was not in the conversations. I know there were some clubs that had interest, but that’s it.
“You know the Financial Fair Play rules, the problems we have with the salaries to bring players in, so it was important to make space for some other players. We couldn’t do it and now we have to manage that.”
Striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin sustained a toe injury in the preseason but has been playing through the pain barrier so far, and withdrew from the England camp in this last international break too.
“He is doing well, but he is one of the players you are expecting more [from]. He was not fully fit, and he was making an effort to be on the pitch
“He has been training with pain. I am really happy to see him trying in the training sessions, even when not fully fit. That is the reason why I am expecting even more.
“I know we talk about strikers in terms of goals, but he can contribute in terms of effort, assists and goals. He has to be great this year and he looks happy.”