Roll up for Everton reserves: Moyes names fringe side for Europa League tie

17 December 2009 12:55
David Moyes named an Everton line-up packed with reserves and untried teenagers yesterday, but insisted he had not left himself open to the same condemnation as Wolves counterpart Mick McCarthy.

Veteran goalkeeper Carlo Nash, 16-year-old defender Jake Bidwell and midfielder Adam Forshaw, 18, will make their Everton debuts against Belarussian side BATE Borisov, just 48 hours after McCarthy caused uproar by fielding a shadow side against Manchester United.

Bidwell and Forshaw were not even on the original squad list, but Moyes flatly denied he was adopting the same cynical approach as the Wolves boss.

Fringe: Goalkeeper Carlo Nash (left) and young defender Seamus Coleman (right)

'You cannot draw comparisons between us and Wolves, because there aren't any,' said the Everton manager. 'For one thing, I'm naming our team in advance, so people can make their minds up whether they want to come along.

'For another, there are no implications for who qualifies. We are second in the group and will remain second, regardless of the result. We earned the right to do this by winning in Athens and Borisov, and you can't say we are leaving the integrity of the competition open to question.

'Joseph Yobo and Sylvain Distin are injured and Lucas Neill and John Heitinga ineligible, so who am I supposed to play in central defence? There are few options. We just don't have enough players, and that is why I called up Bidwell and Forshaw.'

Easy does it: Moyes sees no alternative but to rest players because of the injuries in his senior squad

With Everton having a league game against in-form Birmingham on Sunday, Moyes admitted there was an element of safeguarding players such as Tim Howard, Steven Pienaar, Marouane Fellaini, Tim Cahill and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov for more important objectives.

'I would rather be putting out a stronger side, because BATE have just won their league and are decent, but the Premier League has to take preference,' he said.

'We've had so many Thursday-Sunday double-headers, and with a demanding Christmas programme coming up, it was an ideal opportunity to give one or two players an overdue breather.

'These young lads can benefit from the challenge and they will surely be relishing a European tie under lights at Goodison. It will prove a worthwhile part of their education.

'Ideally, there would be a few more older heads out there to provide some help and guidance, but that can't be helped. At least Leon Osman can offer some of that in midfield, and Tony Hibbert will captain the side after insisting he wanted to play.'

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Source: Daily_Mail

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