Wednesday, 16th April, 2014

Everton manager Roberto Martinez says that he will slot Phil Jagielka straight back into the team as soon as the England international is declared fit.

The Everton club captain has been sidelined since February due to a hamstring problem that he suffered in the game against Chelsea.

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Martinez has confirmed that Jagielka is not too far away from full fitness, but is not available against Crystal Palace tonight.

"Phil is very much fully fit from a medical point of view. He's not too far away and he's been working really well this week. But, at the moment, we have the same squad as we had at Sunderland”, the Spaniard told the club’s official site.


The former Wigan manager has no doubt that as soon as Jagielka is fit he will slot straight back into the starting eleven and believes that the squad have missed their captain in the dressing room and on the pitch.

"Phil is our club captain and as soon as he's ready he'll go straight back into the team. We need him immensely. He's been very much influential, even when he hasn't been on the pitch.

"He's always had a real presence in the dressing room and had plenty of wise words of advice for the young players in the squad. He's our club captain and we need him on the pitch as soon as he can be."

The last time Everton finished in the top four of the Premier League was in the 2004/05 season under David Moyes. Liverpool finished fifth but went on to win the Champions League under Rafael Benitez at the end of the season.

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