Barclays Premier League: Everton boosted by Kevin Mirallas injury news

Kevin Mirallas
Image: Kevin Mirallas: Taken off on a stretcher on Monday

Everton boss Roberto Martinez says the club have received good news on Kevin Mirallas' ankle injury, with the Belgian forward set to be back in action for the Christmas period.

Mirallas was carried off on a stretcher in the closing stages of Everton's 3-1 victory over QPR on Monday after a robust challenge from Jordon Mutch.

But subsequent scans have shown the damage was not as serious as initially feared, with Mirallas in contention to play at home to Stoke on Boxing Day.

For him to extend his stay is incredibly good news for us.
Everton boss Roberto Martinez on Steven Naismith's new deal

"We were very, very worried after the game. It was an incident when you felt there would be damage but the damage is the least it could be - it's great news," said Martinez, speaking at his press conference ahead of Saturday's match with Southampton.

"It's to the ligament in his ankle but he's a quick healer and I don't expect him to be out for too long - the game on Saturday is a bit too early but I wouldn't rule him out for any of the fixtures in the Christmas period which is fantastic news."

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Everton manager Roberto Martinez says the ankle injury to Kevin Mirallas is not as bad as first feared.

Martinez said there had also been positive developments for Leon Osman, who has been struggling with a foot injury since facing Manchester City on December 6.

Surgery

The club had prepared for a worst-case scenario of Osman requiring surgery, but Martinez said that was now unikely.

"He's progressing well and I don't expect him to be out for too long either," said Martinez, who also described Darron Gibson and James McCarthy as "50/50" for Saturday's match.

Everton forward Steven Naismith signed a new three-year deal this week, and Martinez said the Scot was a key figure in his plans for the future at Goodison Park.

"I truly believe he is in the best moment of his career and he has a lot of years at that level in front of him," he said.

"He will get better with games because he is a player who relies on his intelligence and the way he has been performing for us over two seasons has been impressive. For him to extend his stay is incredibly good news for us."

Meanwhile, Martinez said he was not expecting major developments during the January transfer window.

"I am very pleased with the squad - it is strong and good in numbers - and I don't expect any major changes in January," he said.

"I am delighted because I measure the day-to-day work, what we have in the squad and the potential that I can see for the second half of the season."

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