James Rodriguez doubt for Sheffield United game, plus change in goal for Everton
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James Rodriguez doubt for Sheffield United game, plus change in goal for Everton

Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti says James Rodriguez is a doubt for the Boxing Day trip to Sheffield United.

Rodriguez has missed the last three matches with a calf injury and Ancelotti confirms he won’t play against Manchester United in the Carabao Cup quarter-final tonight.

“James is not available,” the Italian told The Liverpool Echo.

“We are not concerned. We are sad because James is an important player for us, but if he is not able to play, he is not ready, we cannot push and force him to come back.

“I think, at least, he can be available for the next game, or for the game after. We have games every three days.”

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The Colombia international has a calf injury and is working individually to try and get back to full fitness.

Ancelotti says Rodriguez will need to return to team training before he can come back into the side.

Which, with just three days until their Bramall Lane visit, doesn’t give the 29-year-old much time.

James Rodriguez injury isn’t only update for Everton

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Ancelotti has also confirmed to The Liverpool Echo that there will be a change in goal against the Blades.

Whomever plays against Man United this evening – either Jordan Pickford or Robin Olsen – will the drop out on Saturday.

Pickford had been the undisputed number one, but a drop in form in recent times has seen that change.

Olsen was signed on loan from Roma in October and has played twice for the Toffees since, both in the Premier League.

Allan and Lucas Digne are also currently injured, while Seamus Coleman and Andre Gomes are close to returning to fitness.

Coleman played at the weekend as Everton beat Arsenal 2-1, while Gomes is also nearing a comeback.

Depending on if they feature against the Red Devils could indicate whether they’ll travel to South Yorkshire.

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