MX23RW : Monday, February 18 02:52:51

Silva happy as Everton squad starts to take shape after injuries

Toffees have had to deal with fitness problems.

Everton manager Marco Silva is looking forward to soon fielding a full-strength team for the first time this season with Andre Gomes and Yerry Mina now back in training.

Silva said the pair should be ready to go after the upcoming international break, with both summer arrivals yet to make their debuts due to an injury-interrupted start to life at Goodison Park.

“Of course you want all the players available from the first day,” Silva said. “It didn’t happen until now. We did a very, very good job in the market and achieved something on the last day of the market but some of them came with small problems.

“Now it looks as though everything will go in the normal way after the next break and all will be available. We will be strong in that moment for sure.”

Gomes and Mina both arrived from Barcelona, with Gomes on loan and Mina a permanent deal, as part of Everton’s late push in the transfer market, but while it has been a long wait to get both ready to play, Silva denied it had been a frustrating start to his tenure at the club.

“These four months for me, of course we want to win always and to go through in the competitions but for me it’s a pleasure, I am proud to work here. I cannot tell you about frustration,” he said.

“We have had some things to solve, some red cards, some injuries as well but it is part of my job. I am here to find solutions, I do not speak about the players I miss.”

Everton face at least one more game with Gomes and Mina, though, as they travel to Leicester on Saturday.

Much like the Toffees, Leicester have been inconsistent at the start of the season, winning four but losing three of their opening seven matches.

“It will be tough game for sure,” Silva said. “It is always tough to play there. They are a good side, with good players and fast players in the attack line, a strong team.

“They have solved many, many games with set-pieces. A good example is last time (against Newcastle), they won the game with two corners and one penalty so they are strong in that moment.

“We have already analysed them, we know where they are strong but we know some places where we can win some advantages if we prepare well and we will go there to win the match.”

Silva is looking for a reaction from his players following their EFL Cup exit to Southampton on Tuesday night, when they went down 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

With seven changes made, the result was not a true measure of recent form but Silva accepted the fans were right to feel aggrieved at an opportunity missed in the competition.

“I am 100 per cent with them in this frustration, and I saw how the dressing room was in that moment, all of us were in that moment as well,” he said.

“It was a goal for us and it is not a matter of whether or not the coach makes changes or not, at the end we have to try to keep some consistency as well.”


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