If I was Roberto Martinez, I’d throw Gareth Barry straight in against Chelsea on Saturday.
Barry is a big-game player. Manchester City are in the process of changing their personnel, so it’s not as though Barry has become a bad player overnight.
City are just moving in another direction, and I’ve previously said it was a real coup for Everton to snap him up on loan.
Against a Chelsea midfield with the likes of Frank Lampard et al, Barry is exactly what Everton need.
There’s no substitute for experience, and there would be nothing Barry cannot do that he hasn’t previously been able to do.
He’s never been fast, he’s never been one to drop a shoulder and go past people. He does what he does and he does it well.
James McCarthy may have to be content with a place on the bench, but there’s still a chance Martinez could put him into the heart of the battle.
Provided the Spaniard doesn’t upset the balance of the team, I can’t see it being a problem.
Gerard Deulofeu is proving a bit of a wild card for Everton, and I’m sure he will be played at some point this weekend.
Not many opponents are yet truly aware of what danger he poses – in fact, perhaps Everton are in the same boat as well.
In this day and age, it’s unusual for players to slip completely under the radar, although Deulofeu has only been on the fringes of the Barcelona first team so far.
He’s an unknown quantity. For how long, though, will depend on how effective he proves.