Roberto Martinez has admitted he will consider reinforcing his midfield in January – but has challenged his existing players to prove they can carry on filling the void created by Darron Gibson's long-term injury.
Martinez has been left to plan without the 25-year-old after he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament playing for the Republic of Ireland on Tuesday.
The Spaniard has already expressed a hope Gibson could return before the end of the 2013/14 campaign but hasn't ruled out adding to his numbers when the window reopens in the New Year.
And speaking ahead of Everton's 2-1 win over Hull on Saturday, Martinez said: "This is a one-off incident and something that in January we will have to look into because we need to see how we are going to react.
"But I’m pleased with the numbers and the quality we have in that area. We are going to assess it in the next three months.
"At the moment it is an opportunity for other players in the squad to show what they can do and that’s the normal competitive edge we have. We need to be able to handle suspensions and we need to be able to handle injuries.
"Obviously Darron will be a big miss but the focus is to make sure there is a good recovery period for him and that we work on aspects that will help him become stronger as a human being as well as a footballer.
"We have to use this setback in his career as a springboard for the next years he has at our football club."