Is Martinez about to take an unnecessary risk with Everton?

Everton Goodison 2

Everton star James McCarthy has suggested the Toffees could name a strong side in the Europa League, just three days before an important game against Arsenal.

Everton midfielder James McCarthy has suggested in the Liverpool Echo that the Toffees are going to take a determined and aggressive approach into the game against Young Boys this week.

Everton lead their Europa League opponents 4-1 after the first leg, which would seemingly provide manager Roberto Martinez with the chance to rest players ahead of an important game against Arsenal this weekend.

However, McCarthy’s comments suggest that Everton may stick with a stronger side despite already holding a healthy advantage over their European opponents.

“Arsenal’s another big game in the league, but we first have to take care of Thursday,” said McCarthy.

“We have a big lead but we won’t take any prisoners. We have to put a show on and it is two big games coming up.”

Martinez has two possible approaches if he feels Everton can’t afford to start two or three fringe players, to hold key stars back for the game against Arsenal.

He could go in with his straight up strongest team and then withdraw players when it becomes obvious Everton are going to win the tie.

However, the risk with that approach is that his best players could be fatigued ahead of the weekend or pick up little injury problems, which could otherwise have been avoided.

The second is to go with a mixture and keeping one of his first choice players in defence, midfield and attack and keeping them in the side throughout the game against Young Boys.

That should give the spine of the side some strength and allow them to see out the game, with plenty of fresh legs ahead of the weekend.

Everton are going to be tested this weekend against an Arsenal side, which will wear the Toffees down and test out their legs over the 90 minutes.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch