Major Fitness Boost For Blues

Yerry Mina, Andre Gomes, James McCarthy and Beni Baningime could all be part of the Everton squad for the Blues’ next Premier League game against Crystal Palace at Goodison Park.

Manager Marco Silva has received a significant boost after summer signings from Barcelona Mina and Gomes, Republic of Ireland midfield player McCarthy and talented youngster Baningime played a full part in a behind-closed-doors training game on Thursday at USM Finch Farm.

The quartet all came through unscathed in a 60-minute training game. They will continue to work over the next week and could be in line for a place in Silva’s squad for the home clash with Palace on October 21.

Colombia centre-back Mina resumed training with his teammates in mid-September following a month of rehabilitation. He was forced back on the sidelines after bruising his foot in a minor training-ground collision but is now in full training again and came through the behind-closed-doors clash with no issues.

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Portugal international Gomes is also closing in on a first Toffees appearance following his deadline day loan deal. The 25-year-old central midfield player has recovered fully from a hamstring injury which has frustrated his efforts since arriving from La Liga.

The midfield options have been further bolstered by the return to fitness of McCarthy. The 27-year-old, capped 41 times by the Republic of Ireland, has not featured since January 20 when he suffered a double leg break in the Toffees’ 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion at Goodison.

Academy graduate Baningime, who signed a new four-year deal with Everton in May, has been out of action after suffering an ankle injury in pre-season.

Skipper Phil Jagielka also played a full part in the game. The 36-year-old centre-back has returned to full training having recovered from a knee problem.



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