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Boss: Kev Can Lead The Line

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Everton Remembers

Everton Remembers

Roberto Martinez is convinced Kevin Mirallas can be influential for Everton in a central striking role.

Since arriving at Goodison Park from Olympiakos 13 months ago, the Belgian international has been largely deployed as a winger or in an advanced midfield position.

But the 25-year-old proved to Martinez his ability to lead the Blues' frontline with an energetic cameo in the latter stages of the 1-0 win over Chelsea last weekend.

When Nikica Jelavic was withdrawn on 65 minutes, Mirallas was pushed further forward by the Toffees boss.

His pace and trickery caused numerous problems for the Londoners' weary defence, typified when he drew a cynical foul out of David Luiz, which led to a booking for the Brazilian defender.

“Kevin Mirallas is now in a stage of his career where he can play in many positions and understand a different way of playing,” Martinez told evertontv.

“He played in that position at his previous club Olympiakos, so we are all very aware of that option.

“At that time [against Chelsea] we were defending really well and were comfortable, but it is important to have pace and mobility up front. Kevin always gave us that outlet and that real threat going forward.

“We need to be able to adjust and adapt and Kevin as an individual showed what he can do.”

Martinez faces a welcome selection problem in attack for this weekend’s trip to Upton Park.

Romelu Lukaku is now available to make his debut and Arouna Kone, who missed last Saturday’s game, is expected to recover from a knee complaint.

With Jelavic also an option - along with Mirallas - Martinez admits he has plenty to consider.

“Those are the decisions you want,” he said. “We have got Romelu Lukaku ready to step in and help the team. Nikica Jelavic has done a great job for the side, and there is Arouna Kone who hopefully will be fully fit after that little knock that he had in training.

“The options up front are pretty strong and that’s where we want to be as a team.

“If you want to get the result that the performances deserve, sometimes you need a cutting edge up front and clearly we have got the personnel to do that.”

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