Lukaku Boost For Blues

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Roberto Martinez says he expects striker Romelu Lukaku to make his return from injury against Burnley this weekend.

The Blues boss is also hopeful Leon Osman can recover from the knock he sustained against Swansea City to feature against the Clarets.

Lukaku - Everton's leading scorer - has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury, while Osman limped off with just 28 minutes played of Saturday's 1-1 draw at the Liberty Stadium.

"Rom is training today with the group and I would expect him to be fully fit for Saturday," said Martinez on Tuesday. "Last Saturday he wanted to be involved but it was a real risk in terms of where the injury was.

"But he's been working really well with the medical department and probably now we've got the green light to allow him to join the group.

"If he trains and doesn't get any reaction over the next few days then clearly he will be fully fit and available for the next six games, which is exactly what we want.

"With Leon, we're really pleased with the scans and it's a soft tissue problem that, knowing Leon, maybe he's got an opportunity to make it for Saturday.

"We're going to give him treatment over the next few days and see how he reacts, and then maybe on Friday we'll make a final decision. But it's not as bad as we thought at the beginning and that helps."

Osman's replacement in Wales was winger Steven Pienaar, who impressed on his first appearance since suffering a knee injury in mid-December.

And, despite four months of no first-team action, Martinez is confident the South African will be able to play a key role in the remainder of the campaign.

The Blues boss added: "In a way, Stevie's refreshed and probably every game that is left is a great opportunity for him to enjoy his football.

"Yes, we'll have to assess him straight after every game to see how his body copes with it but there shouldn't be any problems.

"Stevie is a very fit boy by nature and obviously this season he's been really unfortunate. But now we feel Stevie is fully fit."
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