Ferguson Gives Team News Update

Everton will be without midfield pair Fabian Delph and Tom Davies for Saturday’s lunchtime clash with Aston Villa, with caretaker manager Duncan Ferguson otherwise reporting “more or less a clean bill of health” for the Goodison Park encounter.

Allan is in contention for a return to the starting XI after missing last weekend’s game at Norwich City through illness.

Ferguson confirmed Delph will be out this weekend with a minor injury, while Davies is a long-term absentee as he continues his rehabilitation from surgery on his hamstring last week.

Alex Iwobi is away on international duty with Nigeria at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Speaking at his pre-match press conference on Friday afternoon, Ferguson said: "The players have all trained really well this week, with a plenty of intensity. 

"We have more or less a clean bill of health. We have Fabian Delph [out for this weekend], and then the long-term injury [to Davies].

"We’ve had a good week and the players look upbeat. I’ve pushed them as hard as I could have possibly pushed them. 

"That’s the main thing from me – to make sure we keep that intensity.

"We’re in a good place at the moment on the training field, but that’s on the training field. Let’s hope we can do it in a game, because that’s where it counts."

Ferguson confirmed he will settle on his starting line-up for the Villa clash on Friday and revealed he expects to make changes to the side that were beaten 2-1 by Norwich at Carrow Road last time out.

The Scot insisted he will demand his Everton team perform with commitment, energy and courage from the first minute until the last at Goodison, as the Blues aim to achieve a victory that would lift them to within one point of Villa in the Premier League table.

"If you’re on a run like we’ve been on, then you’ve got to make some changes," he said. "It’s not been working. I’ll consider things tonight and name a team in the morning.

"We have got to show the fans we care about the Club – and really show that fight and determination to get results.

"Then, you’ll bring the fans along with you even more.

"The supporters need to see a team that’s fighting for them. That’s what we’re looking for."