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Yerry Mina gives Everton fitness boost as Mason Holgate suffers toe problem

Everton v Aston Villa – Premier League – Goodison Park
(Image credit: Dave Thompson/NMC Pool)

Defender Yerry Mina has made a timely return to fitness as manager Carlo Ancelotti has an injury worry over fellow centre-back Mason Holgate ahead of the new season starting next weekend.

Holgate, the Toffees’ most consistent central defender in the latter half of the previous campaign following Ancelotti’s arrival in December, limped off in the first half of Saturday’s 2-0 friendly win over Preston.

It is understood the 23-year-old left Goodison Park on crutches and will be assessed on Sunday but Mina, who missed the last three matches of last season with a thigh injury and has not featured in pre-season, will be fully fit for their opener at Tottenham in a week’s time.

“Mason had a problem with his toe. I hope it will be nothing serious,” Ancelotti told evertontv.

“Yerry started to train this week and he is going to be fit for Sunday.”

Ancelotti’s other options in central defence are Michael Keane, who will return to the squad on Wednesday after international duty with England, and 18-year-old Jarrad Branthwaite, who only made his senior debut in July.