Roberto Martinez insists Kevin Mirallas' future is at Everton
Last Updated: 05/11/15 11:24am
Roberto Martinez has dismissed recent speculation linking Kevin Mirallas with a move away from the club - insisting he is integral to his plans.
Mirallas signed an extension to his contract in the summer, but has only started three games this season with two of those coming in the Capital One Cup.
Mirallas has cut a frustrated figure this campaign, and was sent off for a reckless challenge in Everton's draw against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium in September.
But Martinez has asked the Belgium international to bide his time for a return to the starting line-up and rubbished reports he could be willing to let him leave in January.
"It couldn't be further from the truth," said Martinez. "Kevin has been a very important player while I've been at the football club.
"The start of the season has been challenging for him individually as he's had a couple of niggles, a couple of injuries. Then he had the sending off, so he wasn't available for three games."
Martinez also denied there was a rift between him and the 28-year-old, insisting Mirallas' attitude has not been called into question once this campaign.
"The way he's been working in training has been very impressive," added Martinez.
"I think he's improved as a footballer and it's important for us that Kevin is fresher now going into the second half of the season, and we'll get the benefit of that.
"Kevin Mirallas is a very important player for Everton, he knows that, and all he wants now is to get important playing time, because the start of the season has been quite frustrating for him."