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Everton boss: These youngsters are waiting in the wings

Roberto Martinez Press Conference Considered

Roberto Martinez names several youths of promise currently at Goodison Park, all capable of making the step up to first team duties.

After last season's superb campaign signalled a future with plenty to look forward to at Everton, manager Roberto Martinez has hinted that things may get even better, with a little more help from the club's excellent academy.

The Toffees' Spanish manager recently told Sky Sports that pre-season is a time of real promise, especially with regards to discerning the youngsters that may be able to come into the first team setup.

And he is hoping that like Ross Barkley and John Stones did last year, he has more than one individual that can emerge to prove themselves valuable members of Everton's first team, and their future.

"It's important that when we start the season, I know exactly the numbers we need in the squad," said Martinez. "To be strong and competitive in every position and every area for all the tournaments that we're going to be involved in.

"We have five young players that deserve an opportunity, deserve to work with the first team, and we need to assess them and see how ready they are.

"Pre-season is an exciting time where you can make really good decisions, especially with youngsters, that have been out on loan and some of them have been really good in their development. I want to see if those players are going to be ready pre season.

"We need 22 outfield players, it's not only 15 that play and then 7 that are really young players. But the age doesn't really come into it, it's being ready for the demands ahead and being ready to be part of the team - the youngsters we have at the football club are getting very close and only when you bring them into the first team environment you can find out that they are in a position to be part of the first team squad."

Elsewhere, Martinez even went so far as to name some of the players he thought could step up to the Everton first team, with all likely to be given chances in the club's pre-season friendlies.

"We’ve got Tyias Browning, we’ve got Luke Garbutt, Conor McAleny, John Lundstram, even Chris Long to an extent, and Matthew Kennedy," the former Wigan boss said.

"We want to see how they react in the first team, how close they are to being ready – like John Stones and Ross Barkley were last season. And then we will make the final decisions."

Of the players Martinez mentioned, only Garbutt and McAleny have made their debuts for the club, so there could be plenty of exciting new faces surprising people at Goodison next season. 

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