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Everton No2 Irvine delighted with squad depth

Everton assistant manager Alan Irvine says the squad's depth this season is the best it's been in years.

"Right now we have enough players to cope with four or five injuries as long as they are not to the same type of player or players in the same position," Irvine told evertonTV.

"We had a difficult spell when we played Metalist the first time - not because we had a huge number of injuries but because they were injuries to either creative players or goalscorers.

"We had the likes of Mikel Arteta, Steven Pienaar, Tim Cahill and James Vaughan out, so we were missing an awful lot of goals in terms of creating and scoring."

The current international break has afforded some members of the Blues squad additional rest time.

"The boys who have played in the majority of the games and aren't away on international duty have had a long weekend," said Irvine. "We felt we could send them away and start working from Monday."

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