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Jags Up For Accrington Visit

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Phil Jagielka is confident that his first experience of playing at the Store First Stadium can be a positive one.

The Blues captain has clocked up 500 career appearances but has not previously played at Accrington Stanley.

Jagielka could lead Everton against the League Two club on Wednesday evening in manager Roberto Martinez’s first game in charge of the Toffees on English soil.

“I’ve never played there before but my brother has and I have been to watch him,” Jagielka told evertontv.

“I know the changing rooms aren’t the biggest and that should be amusing when about 20 of us turn up to get changed. But the pitch has always been quite nice and I obviously know the manager with him previously being an Evertonian.

“It’s going to be interesting and they have been back for pre-season longer than us so as far as fitness levels are concerned they should be a bit further advanced, but I’m sure that’s why the manager picked this game, so that it will be a test for us.

“It will be nice to go there and hopefully put on a decent show.”

Like Everton, Accrington begin the 2013/14 season with a new manager at the helm.

Former Goodison Park forward James Beattie has taken control of the Lancashire outfit – his first venture into management.

Jagielka crossed paths with the 35-year-old briefly at the very start of his Everton career in 2007.

“Beatts pretty much left a week after I got here,” England international Jagielka added. “We swapped clubs – he went to Sheffield United and I came here, similarly to what Gary Naysmith did as well.

“I still speak to him and he lives around the corner. I will see him before the game but there won’t be any love lost when it comes to the kick-off.”

Wednesday's game against Accrington can be seen LIVE on evertontv. For more information or to purchase the game for just £3.99, click here.

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