Everton latest: Including 'next Pienaar' and Gibson fitness

South Africa Football Stadium

News and gossip from the past week at Goodison Park.

Tim Howard has had his say on why Leighton Baines missed out on the PFA Player of the Year shortlist. The American stopper feels the only reason the Everton left-back missed out on selection is due to his unglamorous full-back position. The former Wigan player has created more chances than any other player in Europe this season but still missed out on the list while the likes of Robin Van Persie, Gareth Bale and Eden Hazard received a nod.

Everton are hopeful that Darron Gibson will be fit in time for the fixture with Fulham on Saturday. The 25-year-old needs surgery on a troublesome thigh injury but it is expected he will delay the procedure until the summer in order to give Everton midfield cover in their languishing attempts at qualifying for European football. Gibson limped off at half-time during the 1-0 defeat at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

Everton are running the rule over the ‘new Steven Pienaar’ on a trial period. Daylon Claase is South African like the current Goodison left-midfielder and also started his career with Ajax Cape Town in his homeland. He spent time with the parent club in Holland before moving to Belgian outfit Lierse in 2010. He is available on a free transfer in the summer and could be a bargain buy for The Toffees.

Everton have once again been linked with Heerenveen striker Alfred Finnbogason. The Icelander has bagged 24 goals in 28 games this season following in the long tradition of striking sensations playing for the Friesland outfit and such form has seen him linked with the likes of West Ham, Sunderland and Aston Villa. Heerenveen claim no interest has been recorded with the club but they understand he may be a target this summer.

Maraoune Fellaini has divulged his feelings on the clubs struggle for wins recently; blaming it on fatigue. He echoed the sentiments of Sylvain Distin who also believed that not being able to rotate their squad has been an issue in sustaining a European challenge this campaign.

Everton are reportedly ready to ruin Real Betis’ hopes of signing Juan Carlos on a permanent deal this summer. The winger has been on loan from SC Braga this season but Portuguese press reports believe that Everton will purchase his economic rights in the summer.

Finally and Everton have also been linked with a move for Lazio’s Nigerian international midfielder Ogenyi Onazi by reports emanating from Italy.

What are your thoughts on everything Everton FC this week?

image: © celsoflores

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch