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Boost for Everton ahead of crucial Crystal Palace clash

Lampard should have a couple of faces back in his matchday squad

Everton Training Session Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

Everton have just two games left in the 2021-22 Premier League season and their future participation in the top flight is still not secured. The Toffees sit a point ahead of Leeds United and two in front of Burnley, with both the Blues and Clarets playing tomorrow ahead of the season finale on Sunday evening.

A win tomorrow against Crystal Palace will ensure safety no matter what way results go in the other games. However, any other result on Thursday night will mean Everton will go to an unhappy hunting ground at Emirates on Sunday needing to pick up points, possibly three, against an Arsenal side that will desperately be looking for a win to try and snatch a Champions League spot from their North London rivals Tottenham.

Speaking ahead of the Palace game during his pre-match press conference, Frank Lampard did have some welcome squad news, revealing that Michael Keane had recovered from his illness and would be in the matchday squad, and would also be joined by on-loan midfielder Donny van de Beek. Defender Ben Godfrey is still recovering from his injury and could be a gametime decision.

“Michael Keane has recovered and is fit to start.

“Ben may be in the squad and that’s just testament to him for striving to get fit. He’s in the squad and I’ll take a decision on whether he is involved at all.”

Jarrad Branthwaite is suspended following his red card on Sunday and will only be available for the Arsenal game, while Salomon Rondon’s season — and possibly his time at Everton — is over as he will be suspended for three games following his wild lunge which also saw him sent off in the loss against Brentford.