Everton midfielder Mikel Arteta steps up recovery

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The Independent Football

Everton assistant manager Steve Round was pleased to see midfielder Mikel Arteta step up his recovery from a foot injury in last night's friendly against Irish side Bohemians.

The Spaniard was named in the starting line-up and played 68 minutes of the 1-1 draw as he continued his comeback.

"He has taken another step closer to being fully fit," said Round.

"He has missed most of pre-season with a foot injury and now he has got those minutes under his belt, which is important.

"The game got Marouane Fellaini, Mikel, Jack Rodwell and Tony Hibbert more minutes and they need that having missed bits and bobs during the summer."

The friendly was hastily-arranged after Everton's opening match of the Barclays Premier League against Tottenham was postponed in the aftermath of the riots in London.

"It was very important. We needed a game and we needed a competitive game," told evertontv.

"The League of Ireland is a good standard and it got one or two players that extra bit of playing time.

"We are a little bit disappointed that we didn't turn the domination of possession into goals but I am sure that will come."