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Rafael Benitez hopes fit-again Jean-Philippe Gbamin can boost Everton midfield

Everton v Crystal Palace – Premier League – Goodison Park
(Image credit: Jon Super)

Everton manager Rafael Benitez is looking forward to injury-plagued Jean-Philippe Gbamin providing proper competition in midfield this season.

The Ivorian has played just three times for the club – one of which was an 11th-minute substitute comeback appearance 20 months after his first two outings – since his arrival in August 2019 due to a serious thigh muscle strain and ruptured Achilles tendon.

However, he has featured in all four pre-season matches the club have played so far and Benitez is hoping the 25-year-old can bolster an area which has been an issue over the last couple of years.

“Obviously, he has had big injury problems in the past and now he is training well,” Benitez told

“I can see him challenging for a position and that is good news for us.

“He is doing well, and he is working hard like the rest of the midfielders. The competition will improve the levels of the players and the team.”