Everton interim boss David Unsworth is set to give midfielder Davy Klaassen an opportunity to prove his worth in his side's Europa League group stage clash against Atalanta on Thursday (23 November).
Klaassen has not exactly hit the ground running at Goodison Park since arriving from Dutch giants Ajax in the summer and has not featured for the Toffees since being withdrawn at half-time during their 2-1 defeat by Lyon last month.
The 24-year-old has had to contend with being regularly overlooked by Unsworth, who has decided to use Everton's established senior players along with the club's talented youngsters in his attempts to haul the Merseysiders from the relegation zone, but according to the Mirror 'Rhino' is prepared to give Klaassen a chance to get his career back on track against Atalanta, who soundly beat their upcoming opponents 3-0 at the Citta del Tricolore in September.
Everton's two remaining Europa League group stages are meaningless from their point of view - their fate was sealed with another 3-0 defeat, this time by Lyon at the Groupama Stadium - but the match against Atalanta will provide a number of fringe players with a chance to stake their claim for a place in the first-team ahead of what will be a gruelling festive period for all concerned.
Klaassen is one of many looking for a way back into the Everton starting line-up having not been afforded a minute of action by Unsworth but the former full-back will allow the Dutchman to play some part against Gian Piero Gasperini's side, who top the group ahead of Lyon by virtue of just one goal with two matches remaining.
Unsworth is likely to ring the changes for the visit of the Atalanta but it remains to be seen if Klaassen will be accompanied by fellow summer signings Sandro Ramirez and Nikola Vlasic for the match at Goodison on Thursday. The former was brought on for the last quarter of an hour of Everton's 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday, while the latter has recently been situated with the club's Under-23 side despite enjoying a relatively positive start to his career on Merseyside.
Everton will certainly have to make do without top scorer Oumar Niasse, who is not registered to play in the Europa League, while Morgan Schneiderlin could be one of a host of first-team regulars to miss the clash against Atalanta due to a niggling toe injury.