Despite the fact that Tim Howard was at fault for both Everton goals conceded in a 2-2 draw with Leicester City over the weekend, Everton manager Roberto Martinez plans to stick with the American goalkeeper for Thursday’s Europa League matchup with BSC Young Boys, and beyond.
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Speaking to reporters ahead of Thursday’s second leg at Goodison Park, Martinez was clear in his belief that Howard’s struggles over the weekend were little more than a bump in the road as the 35-year-old returns from injury.
“I think the goalkeeping situation is important. Tim has come back from injury, he needs to play and get his match fitness.
“Tim is a very experienced footballer. To have 50 appearances in European competition we don’t take lightly, and in moments like tomorrow we need that sort of experience.”
It’s been a roller coaster season for Howard, who after taking a year-long break from the U.S. national team, enjoyed a strong start to the Premier League season, turning in a handful of stellar performances, before seeing his form dip and suffering a calf injury just before New Year’s Day. With Brad Guzan showing well in USMNT friendlies during 2014 and starting every game for Aston Villa, the 30-year-old may pose a serious threat to Howard’s No. 1 shirt upon his return.