Frank Lampard heaped praise on Seamus Coleman’s ability as a leader as he hailed his captain’s ‘immense effect’ on the Everton dressing room.
Coleman has been absent with illness over recent games that have seen questions asked about the character of the squad following defeats at West Ham and Burnley. He did make the bench on Wednesday but Lampard said he had not fully recovered and his presence was partly for his ‘voice’.
The Blues boss has confirmed Coleman is available for the tie with Man Utd, ahead of which he detailed the 33-year-old’s value to the squad.
Asked about his role in the Everton set up, Lampard said: “Huge role, and we’ve missed his presence. I know he was on the bench at Burnley but he wasn’t really fit to play. I wanted him on there because of his voice and how he is.
“He’s a fantastic captain of the club. Everything I heard before I came, from Carlo Ancelotti and others in the game, was about Seamus Coleman being an incredible captain and he’s delivered that and more. His effect on the lads when he speaks is immense.”
Everton go into the game just one point above the relegation zone following the 3-2 defeat to Burnley.
Lampard said his players understood the pressure of the situation, explaining: “These lads are human beings who want to do well in their job. They have to show that, they have to respond in the right way. It’s the only way I knew how to react as a player, to deal with football pressures, get on with the job and work. Sometimes you lack confidence, sometimes your confidence is great, so my job is to try and set the tone of that, and be positive going into the next game is the important thing.”
Coleman and Fabian Delph are available for the Saturday lunchtime clash having recovered from illness and injury respectively. Allan and Michael Keane also return following suspension.
Welcoming their availability Lampard, who is hopeful Yerry Mina will be fit for Everton’s home game with Leicester on April 20, said: “It’s a boost because you need your players and to be able to rely on them. There is no hiding the fact that we have Patterson out for the rest of the season and Andros Townsend out for a long period of time.
“Yerry Mina I think has played about 90 minutes for me – 70 minutes in the FA Cup and 20 minutes or so of a league game. He’s a huge player for us at the back.
“Delph I haven’t seen yet because he’s been injured, Tom Davies is just getting towards the latter stages of his recovery, so we know it has made the squad feel imbalanced because we are losing players and don’t have players to select in certain areas.
“There was a period when we had two main centre-halves injured. You only have to look at the short history of the Premier League and a big club down the road that lost two big centre-halves and the effect that can have on the spine of your team. There are parts when we’ve had to fight through and so to have players like that available again is a huge thing.”