Belfast Telegraph

Hibbert hoping for bigger role

Everton defender Tony Hibbert is optimistic about his potential playing time next season after signing a new contract with the club.

The 33-year-old Toffees youth academy product has made only 10 appearances in all competitions over the past two campaigns, with injuries and the form of fellow right-back Seamus Coleman both contributing to his time out of the side.

Hibbert - confirmed on Tuesday to have put pen to paper on a new two-year deal - says he is now "fit and ready to go", though.

And he hopes the greater number of fixtures Everton have next term due to their Europa League involvement will work in his favour in terms of getting first-team action.

"I picked up a few injuries (last season) but I'm fit and I'm ready to go," Hibbert told evertontv.

"Because of the amount of games that we are playing and the way the manager (Roberto Martinez) likes to keep people fresh, he might introduce players who haven't played the week before.

"The games will come thick and fast, so it is very important to have a good, strong squad."

Regarding Everton's official player of the season Coleman, Hibbert added: "Seamus has been unbelievable and deserves his place for the way he is playing.

"It's one of them where we need players in the squad that will keep fighting for each other and pushing each other for places."

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