KEVIN MIRALLAS believes the return to fitness of “scary” Marouane Fellaini can land a psychological blow for Everton ahead of Sunday’s derby.
Fellaini is winning his battle to be fit after being sidelined by a knee injury suffered while on international duty with Belgium earlier this month.
The midfielder, a huge influence behind the strong start to the season for David Moyes’s side, sat out his country’s World Cup qualifying wins against Serbia and Scotland and missed Everton’s 1-1 draw at Queens Park Rangers last weekend.
However, the 24-year-old has responded to treatment and is expected to line up in the 219th meeting with neighbours Liverpool at Goodison this weekend.
And Mirallas is convinced the sight of compatriot Fellaini in the starting line-up will give Everton a mental boost.
“I think he will be playing on Sunday,” said the attacker. “He is a fantastic player and when he’s not there it’s harder for the team to get good results.
“It’s also good to have Marouane available because he is scary for the other team. People in the opposition fear him. It will be really important for him to play. He would be a psychological asset.”
Sunday’s game is likely to be too soon for Darron Gibson – missing since September 1 with a thigh problem – although Tony Hibbert could be involved.