Frank Lampard has confirmed Demarai Gray and Abdoulaye Doucoure have returned to full training but says a decision has not yet been made on their readiness to start Saturday’s Premier League meeting with Manchester City at Goodison Park (5.30pm GMT).
Lampard has not been able to call on Doucoure since his appointment as Blues manager, with the French midfielder sidelined for his first four matches in charge with a groin injury. Gray, meanwhile, has missed Everton’s past two games with a hip problem.
Lampard revealed Doucoure and Gray have trained with their teammates for the past “two or three days”. He added the pair will be in the matchday squad for the City game and says he will make a call on whether they will be in his starting XI over the next 24 hours.
Ben Godfrey has started to train individually as he steps up his recovery from a hamstring injury but is still “a couple of weeks away” from a return to First-Team action, according to the Everton boss.
It was confirmed last week that Yerry Mina will not require surgery to repair a high grade quadriceps tendon injury – and will instead be managed conservatively by the Club's medical department on his journey back to full fitness.
Midfield duo Fabian Delph (thigh) and Tom Davies (hamstring) remain out for Everton.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Lampard said: “With Doucoure and Gray, they are in training with us and in the squad.
“It’s whether they start which is the issue for me.
“Doucoure’s been out for around five weeks and, with Demarai, we have to be sure [about match fitness] coming into a game which requires this type of physical output to get a performance and potential result… It’s a big ask.
“I’ll have to decide whether they’re ready to start but they’ve both been training with us for the past two or three days, so it’s good to have them back in the squad.”
Lampard was also asked about Everton’s efforts to support Vitalii Mykolenko given the ongoing conflict in his native Ukraine.
“I have spoken to him and the Club have spoken to him,” Lampard added.
“He has every bit of support we can possibly give him from our end. He’s only been here for a short period, so it’s ultra-important he feels that from us.
“He knows that support mechanism is there.
“The decision on whether he is available to play [against Manchester City] will be for myself and him to speak about.”