'I'm Raring To Go'

Tom Cleverley is eyeing a return from injury against former club Aston Villa on Saturday – and hopes to mark the occasion with a goal.

The Everton midfielder has been recovering from an ankle injury sustained in the 0-0 draw at White Hart Lane against Tottenham Hotspur back on 29 August.

Having battled back to make the bench in October’s meeting with Arsenal, a minor setback kept him from making his first-team return.

But, having worked his way back to full fitness once again, Cleverley is eyeing his comeback when Villa come to town on Saturday.

“The last few months have been massively frustrating,” he conceded. “I don’t think any player wants to get injured but when you are settling in at a new club and finding your feet pretty quickly – which I thought I was – then it is even more so.

“You have just got to back yourself to come back from it, work as hard as ever, and hope that, when I do get back into the team, it feels like I have never been away.

“Whenever you have a long-term injury, you are susceptible to a couple of hiccups. I just had a little one with my groin in a training session, but you have got to expect these things. It is hard coming back from a long lay-off.

“But I am as fit as ever now and raring to go.”

Cleverley certainly enjoyed the previous meeting between the Blues and Villa, as he scored the winner in a five-goal thriller while on loan there last season.

And while he has so far managed to dodge some jests from his new teammates about that goal, he is hopeful of repeating the feat this time around.

“I’d like to think I won’t get too much stick for that!” he added. “I was just doing my job on the day.

“I was doing my best to impress people. Hopefully I can get another goal in this fixture – but for Everton this time!”


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