Mixed news on the injury front

, 4 April, 0comments  |  Jump to most recent

Martinez is not willing to gamble on the readiness of Jagielka whose hamstring issue is complicated
Roberto Martinez has provided updates on some of his injured players this week, clarifying in particular Phil Jagielka's condition ahead of the crunch game with Arsenal on Sunday.

He also suggested that while Arouna Kone is unlikely to feature before the end of the season, Bryan Oviedo and Darron Gibson could yet see first-team action.

The manager told reporters at his pre-match press conference this morning that Oviedo has continued his remarkable recovery from a double leg-break in January and expects him to be available for selection by Costa Rica for the World Cup Finals in June.

The 23-year-old also has an outside chance of being fit enough to play in the Blues' final game of the season at Hull City.

Gibson, meanwhile, is close to resuming full training with the senior squad after missing the last 6 months following surgery on a ruptured cruciate knee ligament he suffered on international duty for the Republic of Ireland. Though he will be eased back into action, the midfielder could be available for some of the final games of the campaign.

Martinez has also indicated that he expects Steven Pienaar to return before the season is out, too. The South African apparently suffered knee cartilage damage during the FA Cup defeat at the Emirates last month and, while his manager has been pleased with his progress, he did not give a timescale for his return.

Evertonians will likely not see Kone in a Blue jersey until next season, however. Though there were hopes that he would be able to play some part in the run-in of the current campaign, his recover has been slower than expected.

Jagielka had been expected to play against Newcastle 10 days ago but his return to action has been delayed by the nature of his hamstring problem, an issue that Martinez doesn't want to risk aggravating.

"It is not a straightforward hamstring problem," the manager said. "It is in between two muscles. He is medically fit but when you have played over 30 games you have to be very careful of a recurrence in that injury. The gamble of Phil playing and getting injured now is huge.

"It would be stupid for me to take that gamble. It could be that in two or three days we do a scan and everything is healed and he can rejoin the group, but we need to take the approach that he has to be 100%."


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