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Baines in a ‘positive place’ with Everton after seven months of injury hell

Leighton Baines admits he is feeling on top of the world after making his full return for Everton.

The left-back missed seven months of this year with ankle injuries but started in the weekend's 1-1 draw with Norwich City following two substitute appearances.

Baines got through the Canaries clash unscathed and insists he is in good spirits as he looks forward to the season ahead with his beloved Toffees.

"This last 10 days or so I've felt great," said the 31-year-old who is determined to push for a spot in Roy Hodgson's England squad for Euro2016.

"There has been no reaction and I'm close to being pain-free. I'm in a positive place. Getting on in a couple of games was good psychologically and it was good just to be in and around the first team again.

"It had been a long time. Seven months is a long time to be out and so there are going to be little ups and down and I can't expect to be perfect at the moment but I am really happy with where I am at.

"Hopefully there will be more opportunities to tick more boxes and get more minutes and that one on Saturday was a big one for me getting 90 minutes, it was a full game and required me to manage myself through that."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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