Everton are still fighting for a European spot but they face an uphill battle to be in the Europa League next season since their last Premier League game is against Manchester City.
The Toffees are currently eighth on the league table, tied on points with Spurs who are one position above them thanks to their superior goal difference. A win in their final match of the season should be enough to catapult them into Europe next campaign but beating Man City is not going to be a walk in the park.
If this task wasn’t already hard enough, Carlo Ancelotti has revealed that James Rodriguez will not be fit enough to feature in the matchday squad on Sunday.
The Everton boss said in his press conference: “James Rodriguez is unfortunately not available for this game. He has not recovered from the problem with his calf.
“Unfortunately he did not finish the season well. Now he will be focused to prepare for the Copa America with his national team. I hope to have him back next season at his best.
“I think the Copa America is in his mind now [his season is over] but he was really disappointed not to be able to help the team in the final part of the season. But he has to be ready for the start of next season and to try to avoid the problem that he’s had.”
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The absence of James will be a big blow for the Ancelotti’s plans since the South American had the talent to carve open Man City’s rigid defence. But with him missing out, Sigurdsson is going to keep his place and is expected to play in the playmaker’s role.
Apart from James Rodriguez, Seamus Coleman is also going to miss out after the player picked up a knock during the 1-0 win over Wolves in midweek.
The manager added: “Also, Coleman had a problem during the game against Wolves and will not be available for the game but he will support the team as a captain.”
Carlo Ancelotti is expected to use a 4-4-2 formation on Sunday at the Etihad so there’s a big chance that someone like Alex Iwobi will slot into the right-hand side of midfield in place of Coleman.