Roberto Martinez has revealed that a calf injury forced Ross Barkley out of Sunday’s 3-1 victory over Fulham. Normal 0 false false false EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE
The midfielder was replaced at half-time by Steven Naismith who went on to win the man of the match award for his superb 45-minute cameo.
The Scot played a key part in the Blues’ opener, with his deflected effort turned into his own goal by Fulham stopper David Stockdale.
Naismith later put the seal on the victory five minutes before the end after another substitute, Kevin Mirallas, had restored Everton’s lead.
Martinez did not disclose the severity of Barkley’s injury but was quick to praise the contributions of each of Everton’s three substitutes in the game.
“Ross had a knock on his calf halfway through the first half,” Martinez said. “With these soft tissue injuries, someone like Ross doesn’t think it will affect him and he wanted to run it off.
“He had to come off but during the season you are as good as your squad – it’s never been a game for just 11 players.
“Today the players who came on made a real difference and I do feel the contribution of Steven Naismith, Kevin Mirallas and Aiden McGeady reflect what we are as a group of players.
“We need to be proud of what we have in the dressing room.”