Baines to miss final two Everton games

Everton will be without Leighton Baines for the final two Premier League fixtures of the season – against West Ham and Tottenham Hotspur – after the club’s official website confirmed the defender has had ankle surgery.

Baines was substituted in the Toffees’ last outing, a 2-0 home defeat by Sunderland, and manager Roberto Martinez revealed earlier this week that the England international was to see a specialist over his ankle complaint.

Martinez has since added that Baines has gone under the knife and the recovery period means he won’t be ready to return until pre-season. “Leighton had a little bit of instability in his ankle that flared up in the last two weeks and was really painful in the last game,” Martinez said. “We got it checked and he needed a little bit of repair work so he had surgery (on Wednesday).

“It was a straightforward operation to clear the ankle and give it good stability,” the former Wigan Athletic boss added. “He will be out now until the start of pre-season but it is exactly what he needed. He was trying to play through the pain barrier.”

Martinez also noted that Baines has been carrying the problem for three years and that it had deteriorated in recent weeks, causing the former Latics full-back great discomfort and necessitating the need for action, even though Baines was willing to continue turning out.

Everton go into their last two games of the campaign in 11th place, visiting Upton Park this weekend and welcoming Tottenham to Goodison Park to end the season. With Bryan Oviedo also on the injured list, it’s expected Luke Garbutt will deputise for Baines on the left of Martinez’s back four.

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