Everton’s attackers have been challenged by Ronald Koeman to take their chance to impress should they be called on this weekend.
Enner Valencia is ineligible for Saturday’s trip to West Ham as part of his loan deal from the Hammers. The Ecuadorian has been called off the bench in five of the Blues’ previous eight games, scoring in the 3-2 loss at Spurs and 4-0 win at home to Hull City last month.
With the 27-year-old out, Koeman revealed he is mulling other forward options including Ademola Lookman, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Arouna Kone and Aaron Lennon.
Lookman was an 89th-minute replacement for Ross Barkley in last weekend’s 3-1 triumph at Goodison, and Koeman admits he has been impressed with the 19-year-old in training in recent weeks.
“We know Enner will not be available for the weekend as he is on loan from West Ham but the rest of the players are available,” said the Toffees manager.
“(Lookman) is back on the level of what we expected. Of course, we know it’s a young player and they need to sometimes be a little bit more patient but Enner is a player who can occupy different positions up front and now we have Lookman, Dominic (Calvert-Lewin) – maybe Kone and Lennon as possibilities in our attack.”
One forward who will definitely be in Koeman’s plans in the Premier League’s top scorer Romelu Lukaku.
The striker was voted by his peers in the PFA Team of the Year on Thursday, and is also in the running for both the PFA Player of the Year and PFA Young Player of the Year awards on Sunday.
“It was nice to see Romelu in the Team of the Year and was something he deserves for a very good season,” said Koeman.
“He has been an important part of this team and we know he can get more goals between now and the end of the season. He is improving all the time and that makes him one of the best.”
Reminded of Lukaku’s prolific record of netting for Everton in all nine of his matches against West Ham, Koeman added: “We’ll score at least one time on Saturday – that’s good to know!”