Everton manager Sam Allardyce admits it is a huge blow to lose midfielder James McCarthy until next season after the midfielder sustained a double-fracture of his leg in the 1-1 draw with West Brom.
Just before the hour McCarthy, who has been plagued with various injuries, was carried off on a stretcher after nicking the ball off Salomon Rondon in the act of shooting and the Venezuelan’s follow-through connected with the midfielder’s lower right leg.
Medics rushed onto the field to treat McCarthy with Rondon in tears having seen the after-effects close up and Seamus Coleman, only just recovered from a serious double fracture of the leg himself, was seen leaving his seat in the directors’ box apparently to be with his Republic of Ireland team-mate.
“His tibia and fibula have been broken from his really brave efforts to stop West Brom with a possible scoring opportunity. He’s paid a heavy price for his commitment there,” said Allardyce.
Asked how soon the player would have his operation he added: “When we do it will depend on the specialist surgeon.
“Obviously it’s a big blow for him and us because he’s had so many games missed recently with not-so-serious injuries that we thought we had overcome, and certainly had overcome them over the last few weeks.
“Now this is one serious injury which we know will keep him out until next season at some stage, that’s a big blow.”
Gutted for Jamesy! Just gutted 💙 😔— Tony Bellew (@TonyBellew) January 20, 2018
The injury overshadowed a game which saw Oumar Niasse score the fastest goal by a Premier League substitute this season 59 seconds after coming off the bench to cancel out Jay Rodriguez’s seventh-minute opener in Allardyce’s 1,000th managerial game.
It did, however, end a run of four successive defeats and earn their first point since Boxing Day.
“The performance was a big blow for me and the only thing that came out of today which was any good was a point and that point was by a substitute coming on and putting the ball in the back of the net,” Allardyce said.
“I don’t think there is much more I can say about the game than that.”
Baggies boss Alan Pardew was frustrated not to make it back-to-back league wins for the first time since August but was satisfied with their performance.
“It wasn’t two points dropped but the feeling in the dressing room was one of disappointment from the players and that’s a good feeling to have coming here against all the talent that was on the pitch for Everton,” he said.
“We had enough chances to take all three (points) but it keeps our momentum and it was good to see us pushing at the end to try to win it.”