Everton boss Roberto Martinez sheds light on when Phil Jagielka will return

The veteran defender has not played since October due to a knee injury.

Everton have received a massive boost ahead of the Christmas period, after Roberto Martinez revealed that Phil Jagielka is ahead of schedule in his recovery from a knee injury, Sky Sports reports.

The 33-year-old has not played since the Toffees lost to Arsenal in October, after suffering medial ligament damage, but Martinez explained that due to his excellent progress, the veteran could be back around the turn of the year.

"We are well on track or probably ahead of what we expected. We are in probably [in] the final 15 days before he can rejoin the group," he said.

"Realistically we are talking about joining the group for Boxing Day and Stoke, or Spurs at home. That week seems realistic for him to come back.

"It has been a straightforward knee injury and he's recovering really well," he added.

Although Jagielka would previously be considered a stalwart of the side, Everton have done extremely well since he was sidelined. Since the defeat at the Emirates, the side have gone on a seven-game unbeaten run in all competitions, which has also seen them book themselves a place in the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup.

Nevertheless, it could be argued that the side have certainly missed his presence. Although Ramiro Funes Mori has done a good job filling in alongside John Stones, the goals they conceded against the likes of Bournemouth and Crystal Palace would have been a major source of frustration for Martinez, and may have been prevented had they had the experienced Jagielka available. 

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