Belfast Telegraph

Kevin Mirallas is not on the spot for miss: Roberto Martinez

By Andy Hampson

Everton boss Roberto Martinez claims the Kevin Mirallas penalty controversy has been consigned to history.

Mirallas missed a spot-kick in the Toffees' goalless Premier League draw at West Brom last week after making an apparently impromptu request to take over from regular penalty-taker Leighton Baines.

With Mirallas substituted soon after, a storm grew around the incident, adding to the pressure on Martinez amid a run of just one win in 13 games in all competitions.

But the Spaniard played down the matter on the night and insists no bridge-building between the Belgian winger and the rest of the squad has been necessary since.

Martinez said: "Obviously it is something that has been addressed internally and is water under the bridge. The only problem we had was that Kevin missed the penalty. That is the end of the matter internally.

"Sometimes you feel in a great moment and you want to take a penalty. It is not a negative having players that want to have the responsibility and show they can help the team in specific moments."

The penalty miss came just before half-time in the clash at Goodison Park and Mirallas did not return for the second half due to a hamstring injury.

Martinez expects the 27-year-old to be available for tomorrow's trip to Crystal Palace and is also hopeful James McCarthy (hamstring), Darron Gibson (knee) and Sylvain Distin (groin) could be back in contention.

As they were not involved in the FA Cup last weekend, Everton have spent the week at a warm-weather training camp in Qatar and Martinez has been pleased with players' progress.

Martinez said: "We are hoping Kevin is going to be joining the group. He is one of the players who has benefited massively from being away."

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