Andre Gomes has re-joined first-team training and Carlo Ancelotti is optimistic the Portuguese midfielder can feature in Everton’s meeting with Liverpool on Sunday.
Gomes started Everton’s two matches immediately before football was suspended in March after recovering from a serious ankle injury sustained earlier in the season.
He sat out an intra-squad game at Goodison Park on Saturday to nurse a minor knock but barring any setbacks is likely to be available for this week’s Merseyside derby.
Yerry Mina and Fabian Delph, meanwhile, are “close” to training returns.
Midfielder Delph is recovering from a muscle injury and Mina, the Colombian centre-back, hurt a quad muscle soon after Everton resumed contact training last month.
Manager Ancelotti also confirmed Theo Walcott’s abdominal surgery last week was a success and the forward is expected to resume full training in three weeks, in line with Everton’s rehabilitation plan for the player.
“Andre Gomes is training with the team so he is not going to have a problem for Sunday.” Ancelotti told evertonfc.com.
“The physical condition of the team in general is good and we are looking to recover Yerry Mina and Fabian Delph.
“Mina has a check on Wednesday, so we will see with him [if he is ready to face Liverpool].
“We have to check on Fabian Delph, also.
“They are both close to coming back to training but remain doubts for the game on Sunday.
“If they do not play, we hope they will be with us for the match at Norwich, for sure.
"Theo Walcott had surgery last week, we hope he will not be long in recovery and can be ready to come back with us [in training] in three weeks."
Ancelotti revealed his players’ aerobic conditions have significantly advanced in the past 10 days after training restrictions were relaxed.
Everton’s in-house game three days ago was designed to aid the players’ push for match fitness, while serving as an opportunity to play at an empty Goodison ahead of the Premier League season restarting behind closed doors.
Ancelotti opted to limit his communication with players during more than two months away from USM Finch Farm.
He addressed his squad when they were reunited at the end of May, however, underlining the importance of a strong finish to the campaign as Everton target the top-six finish which would secure European qualification.
Everton have nine matches to bridge a six-point gap to Wolverhampton Wanderers in sixth, with Ancelotti overseeing a transition into more intense training as the resumption date heaves into view.
“The message [he delivered to the players when they were back together] was to work hard, to be ready, to start to focus on games and the restart,” added Ancelotti.
“It was not easy at the beginning of training, we were more focused on avoiding problems and staying safe than anything else.
“You had to keep social distance and pay attention to the Government’s rules, so maybe didn’t have the possibility to be 100 per cent focused on the work you were doing.
“Now it is completely different.
This video is for Season Ticket Holders and Official Members
This video is available for free to Digital Members
Free Digital Membership will provide you with the best possible experience when logged into the website, including access to the latest digital content.
Digital members will receive a monthly newsletter and get access to exclusive videos and regular member competitions offering money can’t buy prizes.
Your Digital account will also enable you to buy any tickets on general sale, and if you’re an Official member or Season Ticket Holder, the same login will allow you to access and manage your ticketing account.
To view this content you need to be a Season Ticket Holder or Official Member.
HOW EVERTON'S MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAMME HAS SAVED LIVES
“We are focused only on training and in the past week we concentrated more on the tactical aspect.
“We know that on Sunday we are going to play a very important game, so now we can say we have a 100 per cent focus.
“The players improved their aerobic conditions a lot since we started to have open training on the full pitch and in the past 10 days made a lot of progress."
On last weekend’s Goodison workout Ancelotti added: “It was organised to give the players the feeling of being at Goodison Park without the crowd.
“To check the pitch, with the new grass.
“It was a good training session.
“The intensity of the game was good.
“We have to improve but we are using this week to do that and prepare the team as best as possible.”