Roberto Martinez offers Everton injury update ahead of Southampton clash

Kevin Mirallas suffered an ankle injury in the 3-1 win over QPR but Roberto Martinez thinks he may only miss this weekend's game against Southampton.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez believes that Kevin Mirallas will only be out for this weekend's clash against Southampton at St Mary's, but should be available for the rest of the Christmas fixtures.

Mirallas left Goodison Park on crutches after Monday night's 3-1 win over Queens Park Rangers after being on the end of a poor challenge from Jordan Mutch.

But Martinez said the damage suffered by Mirallas is the least possible.

There was also good news in terms of Leon Osman, with Martinez revealing that the experienced midfielder will not need an operation on an ankle injury, whilst Darron Gibson and James McCarthy are both rated 50/50 for this weekend's trip to the South Coast.

The Everton manager also said that John Stones won't be rushed back into first team action, saying his return was ahead of schedule after sustaining an ankle injury in October.

Martinez was asked about the role of Ross Barkley and whether he saw his future in the deeper midfield role, something which the Everton boss thinks could be his role going forward.

He told reporters: "Ross Barkley is a player who could master several roles in the team, including that deeper position. He controlled the QPR game."

On Southampton, the Spaniard is anticipating a very difficult game against Ronald Koeman's side despite the Saints losing five consecutive games after an extremely promising start to the season.

"I don't assess Southampton in their current moment of form. I assess them over what they have done all season. They are a joy to watch. They are based on attacking football and full of flair. I really like watching Southampton and they are a team who can compete for the top six.

"I am impressed and not impressed with the job Ronald Koeman has done. I know how good of a manager he is. But he has adapted quickly."

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