Everton

Huge boost for Everton ahead of Saturday’s vital West Brom clash

Everton supporters have been pretty despondent in the Transfer Tavern in recent weeks after seeing their side seriously struggle for form in the Premier League, having failed to win any of their last five matches.

Sam Allardyce made a big difference to the Toffees’ fortunes when he took over at the end of November, leading them to four wins in five games, but they have since then picked up just two points from a possible 15 to slip four points behind eighth place Leicester City. And the Merseyside outfit were very much second-best in their last league outing, with a brace from Harry Kane as well as strikes from Son Heung-min and Christian Eriksen securing a 4-0 win for Tottenham at Wembley, thus leaving Allardyce with much to ponder ahead of their clash with West Brom on Saturday.

Thus, there have been many deflated Evertonians in the Tavern in the last few weeks, although their mood may well be improved by recent comments from Allardyce in his pre-West Brom press conference (via Ben Dinnery on Twitter), which suggests that Michael Keane is available for selection.

The 25-year-old missed their thumping loss at Spurs last weekend as well as their FA Cup third round defeat to Liverpool a week earlier due to a foot problem, but had prior to that started four Premier League games in a row to suggest that he is firmly in Allardyce’s plans.

And the former England chief confirmed on Friday that the centre-back, capped four times by England in the last 12 months, is to ‘return to the squad’ for the visit of Alan Pardew’s Baggies on Saturday, as the Toffees seek to pick up their first victory of 2018.

Landlord’s verdict: Everton have endured a wretched run of form in the last few weeks, with Sam Allardyce’s men failing to win any of their six matches since the 3-1 success over Swansea City back on December 18.

However, they may have received a huge boost in their quest to get back to winning ways against West Brom on Saturday, as the Toffees chief confirmed in his pre-match press conference that defender Michael Keane is to ‘return to the squad’ for the visit of the Baggies.

The 25-year-old missed their 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Tottenham last week but prior to then had started four successive Premier League matches, in which time Allardyce’s men kept two clean sheets to suggest that he’s a key part of their backline, and indeed the manager’s plans going forward.

Everton fans… what do you make of the news? Let us know!

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