Séamus Coleman ruled out of Everton tour to Thailand with hamstring injury
Return of Darron Gibson to action a boost for manager Roberto Martinez
Séamus Coleman of Everton has been left out of the pre-season tour to Thailand because of injury. Photograph: Paul Thomas/Getty Images
Everton defender Séamus Coleman will miss their pre-season friendly in Thailand to ensure he does not aggravate a hamstring problem.
The Republic of Ireland international came on at half-time in Tuesday’s friendly at Tranmere but was withdrawn in the second half. He will stay behind at the club’s Finch Farm training ground with striker Arouna Kone and defender Bryan Oviedo, who are still making their way back from knee surgery and a broken leg respectively.
England midfielder Ross Barkley returns to the squad for the match against Premier League newcomers Leicester in Bangkok on Sunday.
“We assessed Séamus’s injury this morning,” manager Roberto Martinez told evertontv. “He will miss the Thailand trip to give proper consideration to his injury, for proper treatment and to remove any chance of aggravating that feeling that he had.
“We don’t really know the extent of the injury yet but it is sometimes a little bit of a setback that comes with pre-season preparation and getting a lot of volume into the bodies. Hopefully it is going to be just a minor setback.”
Ireland manager Martin O’Neill may well be concerned by that uncertain prognosis with the Euro 2016 qualifiers due to begin against Gibraltar on September 7th, before a double-header – Gibraltar and world champions Germany – in October.
The 2-2 draw at Prenton Park saw the return to action of Republic of Ireland midfielder Darron Gibson to action following the knee injury he picked up last October in the World Cup qualifier against Kazakhstan at the Aviva Stadium.
The 26-year-old from Derry played the second half of the game against Tranmere and Martinez described his return as like having a new player after he could only mange two appearances last season.
“Darron looks really strong,” said Martinez. “It’s been very frustrating for him to spend such a long time away from the football pitch. But when you see him using that technical ability he has and the quality he brings to the side, he is like a fresh player coming back to us.
“We need to make sure we give him the right amount of work now and I think we’ll enjoy seeing Darron Gibson’s football this season.”
Seán St Ledger, meanwhile, has admitted that he is becoming concerned at his failure to land a new club with most managers already at an advanced stage of assembling their squads for the next campaign.
Speaking yesterday in Westmeath, where he has been touring clubs as part of the FAI’s annual Festival of Football, the 29-year-old suggested the Financial Fair Play rules were taking their toll at championship level, leaving many more experienced players facing a nervous end to the summer.
“It’s quite scary,” he said. “I thought I might have got a club now if I’m honest, but I suppose I was injured a lot last season and this is how it is. I’m fit now and want to get back playing as soon as possible and get a place back in the Irish squad.
“I’ve had a few options but it’s just about weighing them up and seeing what happens. It’s not an ideal scenario as clubs are back around now and there’s a lot of players still looking. I’m doing my own stuff at home, trying to stay fit but I’m not the only one in this situation. There are loads of players out there in the same boat. It’s about staying fit and seeing what comes up.”
The defender remains positive about his prospects of landing a decent deal but the delay has left him time to ponder the impending end of his career and what he will do next.
“I never used to think like that when I was younger but now that I’m older I’ve definitely considered it, whether it’s going into coaching or some business ventures. As you get older, and the way football is going now and friends who are working in offices, it’s something that’s realistic now.
“I’m like any other ordinary person. I have bills to pay and mortgages to pay. I have earned decent money during my career but at the same time, I still have things to pay and all that sort of stuff. The longer you go without being paid, the more you worry. I just have to keep my head down, work hard and something will come up.”