This site uses cookies to improve your experience and to provide services and advertising. By continuing to browse, you agree to the use of cookies described in our Cookies Policy. You may change your settings at any time but this may impact on the functionality of the site. To learn more see our Cookies Policy.
Dublin: 9 °C Tuesday 18 December, 2018

Big Sam hails fit-again James McCarthy as Everton's 'shining light' in United loss

The Ireland midfielder came off the bench against Manchester United earlier.

James McCarthy (file pic).
James McCarthy (file pic).
Image: Martin Rickett

EVERTON MANAGER SAM Allardyce had some high praise for Ireland international James McCarthy after their 2-0 defeat to Manchester United earlier.

The 27-year-old midfielder took another step forward in his recovery from nightmare injuries which have plagued him of late as he was sprung from the bench at Goodison Park.

McCarthy started his first Premier League match of the season against Bournemouth on Saturday, but was substituted at half-time, and he put down another half-an-hour of game-time this afternoon.

Allardyce was quoted by the Liverpool Echo as saying:

“We recovered from going a goal down with our substitutes and James McCarthy for me was the shining light of the recovery — because he actually went and tackled somebody and showed the rest of our team how to we had to go about our job in shutting Manchester United down.”

McCarthy has been dealing with hamstring injuries for the last 18 months, and Saturday was just his second Premier League start of 2017.

He hasn’t donned the green jersey since Ireland’s 3-1 World Cup qualifying win over Moldova back in October 2016.

Allardyce came under fire on Twitter for his decision to introduce the Ireland midfielder for Wayne Rooney when his side were 1-0 down, while fans at the ground voiced their unhappiness.

But the Toffees manager stood by his decision post-match and added, of the psychological hurdles McCarthy has been facing:

“There is still some doubt in James’ mind because of the length of time he has been out and the injury recurring in the same area. We are delicately managing it, like we have with Yannick Bolasie.

Everton v Manchester United - Premier League - Goodison Park Allardyce opted to take Rooney off. Source: Peter Byrne

“We won’t see the best of Yannick Bolasie for eight or nine matches but we have to put him on otherwise we will never get him into the swing of it again.

“It’s not an ideal situation to be in — and James McCarthy has been out for 18-months to two years which is even longer than Yannick, even though it has been a lot of little injuries rather than one serious injury.

“We will try and overcome that problem.

“If we can put Seamus Coleman back in that and Bainesy back in that we will get a stronger team I think. And if we can find someone in January who can score goals we will get better.”

The42 has just published its first book, Behind The Lines, a collection of some of the year’s best sports stories. Pick up your copy in Eason’s, or order it here today (€10):

  • Share on Facebook
  • Email this article

About the author:

Emma Duffy

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel