Former Everton defender Michael Ball reckons the return of midfielder Andre Gomes will be crucial to the club turning around their form.
The Toffees currently sit in the relegation zone having lost their last four Premier League games, and fans are growing frustrated with the team’s level of performance under Marco Silva.
They made a promising start but have tailed off rather drastically, which seems to have coincided with the absence of midfielder Gomes, who has been nursing a rib injury.
The Portuguese made a returning cameo appearance against Burnley, but his influence from the start will be a big positive for Everton in the eyes of Ball.
Writing in his latest Liverpool Echo column, he said: “When Andre Gomes is playing he’s probably head and shoulders one of our best players.
“A new face and someone a little bit fresher and eager to get on the front foot is something we’ve been lacking. When I talk about leadership I don’t mean someone screaming and shouting I mean someone demanding the ball and asking questions of the opposition.
“Gomes has shown that and he can unlock defences with his ability. Fingers crossed he can bring some fresh air into our team.”
Without a doubt Everton have missed Gomes and his playmaking abilities can help Dominic Calvert-Lewin or Moise Kean really start to fire.
The £22 million signing from Barcelona (BBC Sport) is a hugely intelligent player and his creativity has definitely been missed – Everton have scored just twice during the last four defeats.
With Gomes absent, Silva’s side have looked devoid of ideas in the final third, but his return should inspire those around him.