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Everton's inconsistent start to the season continued on Sunday as Crystal Palace left Goodison Park with a 3-2 win. It was a frustrating afternoon for Roberto Martinez's side as his team continue to struggle against the Eagles, but the Spaniard has been handed better news today with the impending returns of duo Bryan Oviedo and Arouna Kone, who could feature against Swansea City in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday.
"We've got really good news about Bryan Oviedo being in the squad for the first time since his broken leg. Arouna Kone could be involved as well. He's available for selection even though we need to be a bit cautious," said Martinez.
"He's in a situation where he's been training with the group now for a while, and I do think that he's ready for 11-a-side. He played a game with the Under-21s last week so he is available for selection, but I need to take a decision tomorrow morning on Arouna," he added.
The returns of Oviedo and Kone will be a big boost to the Toffees, who have recently seen Darron Gibson return from a long-term injury too. The Republic of Ireland international, 26, is in line for his first start of the season against Swansea after coming off the bench against Wolfsburg and Crystal Palace, and he says he can't wait to start a game again.
"Obviously I can’t wait to start a game – it can’t come quick enough. I am biding my time. I know I can’t jump straight back in, because the lads did so well last year," said Gibson. "But hopefully that start comes sooner rather than later. I just have to be patient and wait for my chance. It has been frustrating to sit on the bench for the first weeks of the season. Luckily I got on against Wolfsburg and enjoyed it."
"The run of games coming up will provide an opportunity for the whole squad. I think everyone will get games somewhere along the line. The squad has improved and it is definitely strong enough to handle all these games. Any of the lads who do step in to play, I am sure will do a good job."
Meanwhile, the recent injury to Seamus Coleman means that Everton are short of bodies at right back, and Martinez could look to the free agent market for cover. Former Manchester City, Preston and Burnley full back Tyrone Mears is without a club after leaving Bolton Wanderers at the end of last season, and has reportedly been handed a trial by Everton.