Everton assistant Shakespeare: Apollon game not an audition

Everton assistant Shakespeare: Apollon game not an audition

The 63-year-old has remained at home as he has a pre-arranged appointment to attend and that the Toffees will now be led by first-team coaches Craig Shakespeare and Duncan Ferguson.

Bellew's beloved Everton have struggled defensively this season, with Stoke and Swansea the only teams to have conceded more and the boxer is concerned for how they will fair in Sunday's Merseyside derby.

Everton are yet to win a match in Group E and need three points to avoid finishing bottom of the standings, although Apollon are no pushovers as they twice came from behind to draw 2-2 when they visited Goodison Park in September.

"The team for Sunday hasn't been picked so there is an opportunity as always in any training session for things to change", Shakespeare told reporters in a press conference held on Wednesday afternoon.

"Sam has a prior medical arrangement". It is a fresh start for us all.

The French worldwide will be one of Everton's most experienced players against Limassol, with numerous Toffees youngsters set to start.

"I will speak to him and find out what he wants to do".

The likes of Sandro Ramirez, Davy Klaassen, Muhamed Besic and Joel Robles will all be handed opportunities to impress the club's new management structure, while James McCarthy should see game time as he continues his recovery from a troublesome hamstring strain.

Allardyce underwent heart surgery back in December 2009 to fix a narrow coronary artery during his time in charge of then-Premier League side Blackburn Rovers.

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