Jan 052015

Everton FC will try to sign a “long-term” goalkeeper in January, says Roberto Martinez.

The current injury to Tim Howard, who is out for up to six weeks with a thigh problem, and lack of experienced cover has prompted Martinez to scour the transfer window.

But the Blues boss, who only has 24-year-old Joel Robles to deputise in a senior capacity at the moment, insists he won’t target a quick-fix stand-in, with Howard, 35, having previously hinted he will retire in the next few years,

“We need to rely on experienced hands and that’s why I’m going to look at that situation,” said the Catalan. “But we won’t bring anyone in for the sake of it. Unless we can bring a goalkeeper who fits well into the way we want to play and the way we are as a team I won’t bring him in.

“But I would rather make a long term signing rather than throw a youngster into first team action.

“I don’t think short-term would be a good solution for us right now.”

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Everton have used teenager Russell Griffiths on the bench in recent weeks, with Robles starting consecutive Premier League games for the first time since he joined from Wigan in summer 2013.

The only alternative is another teenager, Poland U-19 shot-stopper Jindrich Stanek, and Martinez is understood to want a keeper who can come straight in and add further competition to Howard for his number one spot – then one day succeed him.

Everton may look to do an initial loan deal with a permanent transfer lined-up for the summer, and Martinez is looking across Europe for the right man.

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