Marco Silva has landed a welcome boost for Everton’s trip to Aston Villa on Friday night, as the Express and Star understand Jonathan Kodjia is a doubt for the Premier League encounter.
The £8.1million-rated forward sustained an ankle sprain during the Villains’ opening day defeat away to Tottenham Hotspur, and missed his side’s subsequent clash with Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth as he is not expected to make his return to training until nearer the end of this week.
Losing Kodjia for our trip to Birmingham will be a blow to Villa boss Dean Smith, as the Claret and Blue side only have three recognised centre-forwards in their squad – with the other two being summer signing Wesley Moraes and 21-year-old Keinan Davies.
Smith has so far only awarded Davies three minutes of action in the top-flight, while Wesley is yet to put together a commanding performance in the Premier League having arrived from the Belgian Jupiler Pro League for a club-record fee in June.
Against Tottenham, the 22-year-old Brazilian recorded just a single effort on Hugo Lloris’ goal, lost 75% of his aerial duels and was dispossessed three times.
He struggled to fare much better against the Cherries, either, with Wesley striking one of his two efforts on target, won 30% of his ten aerial duels, and was dispossessed twice as Villa lost 2-1 on Saturday.
Wesley’s former Club Brugge teammate Marvelous Nakamba is a doubt for our trip, as well, as the Zimbabwe international is still building his fitness having skipped pre-season with his former side on the back of competing at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Centre-back duo James Chester and Kortney Hause are also expected to miss the game with hamstring injuries.