Everton hope to have experienced midfielder Gareth Barry back in action sooner rather than later, after a leg injury sustained against Sunderland proved to be not as serious as was first feared.
The veteran was needed hospital X-rays after being forced off just 13 minutes into the 1-1 draw at the Stadium of Light, with the Toffees initially fearing a broken leg which would have meant a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
However, the results of his tests suggested far less serious damage, with Barry also having an upcoming international break to begin his recovery.
“Happy to confirm it’s not the broken leg we were worried about. There is ankle damage we must assess,” boss Roberto Martinez confirmed.
The Toffees will also assess the fitness of James McCarthy, after he finished the game on Wearside with a tight hamstring.
Martinez admitted: “It is a bit of a concern because he had the same injury a few weeks back when he missed the game against Manchester United and it is in that area. We are hoping that it is more fatigue than a soft tissue problem.”
The point for the Toffees on Sunday was enough to lift them into the top half of the Premier League table, above city rivals Liverpool.
However, Martinez’s men have only won three of their 11 league games so far this season and have conceded 20 goals in the process.
Everton are available at 1.73 to win at home to West Ham in their next game on Saturday November 22, with the Hammers 3.98 to take all three points at Goodison Park.