Everton handed injury boost ahead of clash with Newcastle United as Frank Lampard could hand debuts to two players heavily-linked with a January move to St James’s Park
After guiding the Toffees to FA Cup victory over Brentford on Saturday, Everton travel to Tyneside aiming to improve on their league record which has seen them win just once in their last 14 games.
Eddie Howe’s side will be aiming to make it back-to-back victories having secured three-points against Leeds United before the squad jetted off to Saudi Arabia for some warm weather training.
However, the Magpies task will not be made any easier by the expected return of Dominic Calvert-Lewin to the Everton line-up.
Calvert-Lewin’s return of five goals in nine games against Newcastle is equalled only by his five strikes against West Ham.
The striker has played just six times this season and although he completed 90 minutes against Aston Villa last time out, he was left out of the squad for Saturday’s game as a precaution.
But Everton and Lampard will not only be buoyed by the return of Calvert-Lewin however, as Donny van de Beek and Dele Alli could both be handed debuts.
Both players were subject to interest from Newcastle last month, with Van de Beek reportedly rejecting the chance to move to the north east on-loan before a last-gasp approach from Newcastle for Alli was also rejected.
The duo were cup-tied for the FA Cup game at the weekend and could be thrown into the team by Lampard this evening.
There could also be St James’s Park returns for two players that had short but successful spells on Tyneside.
Andros Townsend spent just six months at Newcastle and despite his best efforts, he couldn’t prevent relegation back to the Championship in 2016.
Salomon Rondon, on the other hand, was never a Newcastle United player, joining on-loan from West Brom, however, his impact alongside Ayoze Perez and Miguel Almiron at the end of the 2018/19 season helped Newcastle become one of the most exciting Premier League sides for a brief period.
Everton will definitely be without Fabian Delph, Abdoulaye Doucoure and Ben Godfrey through injury however.