David Moyes may opt to play Tony Hibbert alongside Johnny Heitinga tomorrow night.
Hibbert has recently returned from the groin injury that forced him to sit out Everton’s hectic Christmas schedule, and he was included in the 18 man squad that drew 1-1 with Blackburn last Saturday. However, despite having Heitinga and Duffy to call on for the FA Cup clash against Fulham tomorrow, Moyes stated that he is considering partnering Hibbert with Heitinga at the heart of the Toffees’ defence.
Moyes said: “Sylvain and Jagielka are both progressing well but won’t be available for this game.
“So far Shane has done really well in the games and it is terrific for the boy. He has got something and he has a chance. He will certainly make a really good career in the game and we hope it is at Everton.
“The level is going to step up shortly and the more you play, the more people expect from you. In your first couple of games as a youngster people do not expect too much.
“When you stay in the team then the supporters’ and the manager’s eye gets drawn to you. We want him to keep doing things simple and not over-complicate things, and if he keeps playing as well as he has done in the last two games then we will all be happy.
“The decision for me is that I will have Tony Hibbert fit and available, so do I put him in because of his experience, albeit not being a centre half? So we have got that in our mind as well because the games now are really important games.
“We have got to win in the cup to get through and we have games coming up that are against really top teams. We have to decide if Shane is the right one for the job.”