Next Match:

Crystal Palace (A) Sat 31 Jan 2015, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Boss Still Has Stoke Decision

by Adam Clark @efc_adamclark

Everton boss Roberto Martinez says he will use the next two days to assess his options before deciding on how best to compensate for the loss of Leighton Baines.

The full-back will be out for up to six weeks after he suffered a broken toe in last weekend's Merseyside derby and Martinez must tinker his team for Saturday's 3pm visit of Stoke City.

Gareth Barry plugged the gap left when Baines limped off against Liverpool, with a midfield reshuffle allowing the introduction of winger Gerard Deulofeu.

Leon Osman is another contender to step in to the starting line-up having been named on the bench five days ago, while Costa Rica international Bryan Oviedo is a possible like-for-like replacement.

Veteran centre-back Sylvain Distin has also deputised for Baines in the past, leaving Martinez with no shortage of avenues to explore.   

But asked if he had already decided on his plan for the Potters, Martinez told evertontv: "Not yet. Training is very important for those aspects to realise how the players are, where they are.

"I think Gareth Barry did really well against Liverpool to step into that role and be himself.

"Obviously, we've got other options at the football club, defenders who can slot in in that position and that's something that I'm going to look into.

"I'm happy that we've got options. You don't want to lose players but you always know you're going to miss players through suspension, through injury, and the level of a squad is measured in those moments.

"I'm excited to see how as a team we can take this opportunity to show there is real desire and competition for places in the squad."

Tickets for Saturday's game are available from just £32 for adults, £21 for concessions and £16 for juniors.

To buy, click here or call 0871 663 1878.

Alternatively, visit the Park End Box Office at Goodison Park, Everton Two in Liverpool One or TicketQuarter in Queen Square.

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