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Stoke City (A) Wed 4 Mar 2015, 19:45, Barclays Premier League

by Andy Lewis @efc_andylewis

Phil Jagielka says he and fellow injured star Leon Osman are ‘itching’ to get back into the action for Everton.

Jagielka hasn’t played since damaging medial knee ligaments in the defeat to Bolton on January 4, a game which was also the last time Osman featured for the Blues.

The midfielder had an operation to remove some floating bone from his knee and Jagielka has been grateful of the company in the treatment room.

The England man told evertontv: “I have had Ossie for company which has been good – although I am not sure everyone else thinks so.

“But we have been on best behaviour of course. We’ll hopefully be stepping it up in the next couple of weeks although we’ll probably be sat on the bench or in the stand the way the team are playing at the moment!

“But we are itching to get back. I am getting there. It has probably been the longest January ever but I have got over that and am out of the brace and starting to do more in training as well.”

Jagileka is pleased to have seen the team prosper in recent weeks and has been particularly impressed with the brawny performances of Denis Stracqualursi.

The Argentine’s lung-busting forward displays have been emblematic of the Blues’ recent revival.

And Jagielka said: “The win over Chelsea proves what a good team we have got. We have added quality in January - Nikica (Jelavic) has not played much yet – but Denis is like a new signing, the raging bull up front chasing everything down and he has got himself a couple of goals.

“The whole team looks different. The back four are doing fantastically and hopefully we can have a much better second half of the season to the first.”

Manager David Moyes revealed in his press comference before the draw at Wigan on February 4 that Jagielka and Osman were approximately four weeks away from a return.

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