Everton may need to go back to the drawing board, with Pascal Gross’s return from injury having been put back.
Seagulls midfielder Gross was expected to return for the clash at Goodison Park, but will miss the game after suffering a setback in his recovery from a pesky ankle injury. The news was confirmed by manager Chris Hughton to The Argus.
The German playmaker has been out of action since the start of September.
He has only made four appearances this season totalling 217 minutes of pitch time.
He is a big player for the south coast club, and was their best creative player last season.
That said, Brighton have actually been on a good run of form of late without him; their 1-0 win over Wolves last weekend was their third straight Premier League win.
Everton must prepare for March threat
Perhaps the idea of Gross returning for this game, followed by news he now won’t will give Everton a psychological boost.
Gross is very talented attacking midfield player.
He is to Brighton what Gylfi Sigurdsson is to the Toffees.
He is their go-to man for creating chances, and the fact that he won’t feature in Merseyside on Saturday is a boost for the hosts.
That said, Everton will have to prepare themselves to face Solly March instead.
March has been operating as the most advanced midfielder in recent weeks, and Everton midfielder’s Idrissa Gueye and Andre Gomes will have to keep tabs on the Englishman, who has impressed in Gross’ absence.
He has been the man to offer support to lone striker Glenn Murray, and it would be criminal for Everton underestimate him.