Everton Mirallas Pienaar
Everton's Kevin Mirallas and Steven Pienaar celebrate a goal against Liverpool. Reuters

Live coverage of Everton v Stoke City here

Everton's Kevin Mirallas and Steven Pienaar celebrate a goal against Liverpool. Reuters
Everton's Kevin Mirallas and Steven Pienaar celebrate a goal against Liverpool. Reuters

Last weekend Everton were involved in one of the most memorable English Premier League games of the season so far, and one of the best Merseyside Derbies in the EPL era. When the Toffees host Stoke City on Saturday, however, Roberto Martinez will be hoping for a similar performance, but a more sobering, straightforward three points.

Liverpool snatched a point at Goodison Park last Saturday, with Daniel Sturridge scoring the equaliser in the final moments, after a Romelu Lukaku double had given Everton a 3-2 lead.

The home side's performance, on the back of two 0-0 draws, could not be questioned in that game, and Martinez will now be keen to mould the bright performance with the right result when Stoke come to visit.

"I don't think it will take much to lift the players because we were very pleased with the performance in the derby," he told evertontv. "The second half was as good as you are going to get -- we pushed a top team and had 10 shots on target. We opened up our opposition with a lot of good, attacking football.

"When you are the better side and don't get three points, especially from being so close to the scoreline you want, it can feel like a disappointment. But it's a game that, if anything, has made us stronger and we are desperate to get out there and fight for another three points.

"But we will do that while showing the respect that Stoke deserve because they will make it very difficult for us on Saturday."

Everton, who have lost only one game all season, but drawn six of their 12 games, sit seventh in the table at the moment with 21 points, eight ahead of Stoke, who are on a three-match unbeaten run in the league, capped off by a 2-0 victory over Sunderland last weekend.

"Everton took part in a great derby last weekend and got a lot of plaudits for the way they played, and quite rightly so," manager Mark Hughes told Stoke City Player. "They are a good team; they have been a good team for a long time now.

"It's going to be a difficult game for us but we've got momentum given that we won at the weekend and we'll go there in good heart. We're looking forward to the game. I think we've got players in our team that can cause them problems, so we'll see how it goes.

"In terms of a challenge, going to Goodison Park is always difficult for any opposition team, no matter who they are, but given that we won last weekend and our away form has been fine we'll look to get a positive result."

Team news: Everton have been dealt a huge blow with key player Leighton Baines ruled out for a month with an injured toe.

The Toffees, though, welcome back Antolin Alcaraz, after the defender came through 45 minutes in a behind-closed-doors match earlier this week. The Paraguayan international has not featured for Everton since his move from Wigan on a free transfer in the summer due to a hamstring injury. Arouna Kone and Darron Gibson are long-term injury victims for the Toffees.

Stoke will have to do without the services of Marko Arnautovic, who has been ruled out with a hamstring injury, but the bigger blow will be losing Robert Huth , who is expected to miss several weeks of action.

"It looks like Huthy is going to need an operation," said Hughes. "So we are likely to be without him for a period of time unfortunately. We hoped that we would be able to manage him through it to be perfectly honest, but it looks like he will have to have an operation on it. We are going to lose him for a number of weeks."

Stephen Ireland, however, is thought to be available after recovering from a shin problem.

Key men: Everton: Has to be Romelu Lukaku, who scored a brace in the Merseyside Derby. If the Belgian fires in front of goal again, then the Potters could be in for a long afternoon.

Stoke: Peter Crouch has not been in the best of goalscoring forms of late and the former Liverpool striker will be keen to dent Everton's fortunes with a couple of goals of his own.

Where to Watch Live

The game is scheduled for an 8.30 pm IST kickoff with no live coverage in India. You can catch the action via live streaming online, however, by clicking HERE. To watch the match in the U.S. through live streaming, click HERE. Viewers in North Africa and the Middle East can do the same by clicking HERE.

Expected lineups: Everton: Howard; Coleman, Jagielka, Distin, Oviedo; McCarthy, Barry; Mirallas, Barkley, Pienaar; Lukaku.

Stoke: Begovic; Wilkinson, Cameron, Shawcross, Pieters; Etherington, Nzonzi, Ireland, Walters, Adam; Crouch.

Prediction: 2-0 to Everton

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