All the latest news, views and transfer rumours from Goodison Park...
Everton's pre-season got underway last night with a 2-2 draw at Tranmere Rovers, and midfielder Darron Gibson made his long awaited comeback at Prenton Park. The former Manchester United man has been out of action since October, but manager Roberto Martinez was encouraged with what he saw from the Irish international.
"Darron looks really strong," said Martinez. "What's pleasing is that he didn't look like a player who has been missing for a long time. He looked sharp and strong and a refreshed footballer and that's a good sign."
"It's been very frustrating for him to spend such a long time away from the football pitch. But when you see him using that technical ability he has and the quality he brings to the side, he is like a fresh player coming back to us."
Yet whilst one Irishman returns, another has been sidelined as Seamus Coleman hits the treatment table. The right back was taken off in the draw with Tranmere on Tuesday night as a precaution having felt some tightness in his hamstring. Martinez says that the defender will now miss the team's trip to Thailand, but is hopeful that it isn't a serious injury.
"He will miss the Thailand trip to give proper consideration to his injury, for proper treatment and to remove any chance of aggravating that feeling that he had," said the Spaniard.
"We don’t really know the extent of the injury yet but it is sometimes a little bit of a setback that comes with pre-season preparation and getting a lot of volume into the bodies. Hopefully it is going to be just a minor setback."
In transfer news, it was yesterday reported that Everton were on the verge of completing a deal to sign Anderlecht's highly rated striker David Henen, and Martinez gave some insight in to what fans will see from the former Monaco loanee when he arrives at Goodison Park.
"It is in the process of being completed," Martinez said. "He's a young, talented footballer who represents Belgium in the lower teams, in the under-18s and has had good experience in going to France."
"He is a bright boy and we feel he is something different that we haven't got in the under-21s so we are hoping he is going to be giving us something different in that group.