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Thanks Greg – great questions. He’s off to have his lunch now but I’ll bring in all of his updates from later on today.
Going to wrap-it up now. Thanks for all the questions and fingers crossed for a win tonight which will put the Toffees well and truly in the driving seat of group H. COYB!
Matty Stephens: How is the atmosphere in Lille today? Any signs of trouble?
The atmosphere is great today. There are hundreds of Blues in the square enjoying the build-up with flags and banners everywhere. Hopefully last night can be put behind them, we can all concentrate on the football, and there are no further flare-ups.
Chris Bunclark: Do you think Martinez has a plan to stop Origi or will we just defend normally?
Knowing him he will be more concerned with what Everton can do to hurt Lille, and how Eto’o, Barkley and Lukaku can cause them problems, than worrying about Origi. Martinez is definitely not the sort of tactician to set up his side to stop a certain opposition player whoever they are. Origi will be a threat though. Tim Howard knows all about him after the Belgium v USA game in the World Cup and Lukaku can tell the lads what to expect.
Sarah McHale: When will people start believing we’re genuine Europa League contenders?
A win tonight against a decent, defensively resolute Lille side would certainly help. That puts Everton in a very strong position to go through after 3 games and would send out a message to the rest of the sides in the competition.
Chris Bunclark: Can you see Distin starting or will Alcaraz continue after his impressive performance at the weekend?
My best guess is Alcaraz will continue although it’s hard to second guess Martinez’s teams. Often end up with egg on your face. He said last week that Barkley wouldn’t be ready to start against Villa!!
Jay: Is Naisy just being rested? Who do you think we will play?
Yeah Steven is just being rested. He played two consecutive internationals for Scotland and then ran himself into the ground against Villa so, with Burnley on Sunday in mind, he is being rested.
Chris Bunclark: Is Barkley fit to start? He seemed to be fit against Villa. Did Martinez take him off just to save him for Lille?
Yes. He was only taken off against Villa when he understandably started to tire after a few months out. He is fit to make his European debut for the Toffees tonight.
James Morgan: Alcaraz or Distin for you?
I still believe in Sylvain Distin and think he has something to offer the side. I’m glad to see him here and training with a smile on his face.
However you can’t drop Alcaraz after he hardly put a foot wring against Villa and he needs games to get to his best. I’d start Alcaraz and have Sylvain on the bench.
Lozza: Everyone said we have 10k there, is that true? Blues everywhere?
Difficult to say so far. Will have a better idea after the game tonight but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was pushing 10k eventually. Not as many as that last night but as I’m sat in the lobby here it’s just an endless stream of Blues arriving to check in. The Charles De Gaulle square was rammed with Toffees earlier as well. The atmosphere is good.
Kev Johnson: What’s more important to Bobby, Lille or Burnley?
I’d say he values both of equal importance. A win here tonight and Everton are practically through into the knock-out stages. But three points at Burnley and they move up the table again, hopefully beginning to put that difficult start to the season behind them.
Both are significant games in different ways.
Hello from the lobby of the Novotel Lille where I’m working as streams of Blue arrive to check in.
Right, Greg is here – keep those questions coming in by just posting comments below or @joerimmer88 on Twitter.
Here’s some great pics from the centre of Lille from our photographer Andy Teebay.
Everton fans gather in the centre of Lille for Everton FC’s UEFA Europa League tie against OSC Lille,at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy,Lille,France. Dave Johnson 46,from Anfield,with a friendly French Gendarmerie in the centre of Lille.
Everton fans gather in the centre of Lille for Everton FC’s UEFA Europa League tie against OSC Lille,at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy,Lille,France. Ross is Boss. A busker plays her accordion infront of a Ross Barkley banner in the centre of Lille.
Everton fans gather in the centre of Lille for Everton FC’s UEFA Europa League tie against OSC Lille,at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy,Lille,France. Everton fans begin to gather in the centre of Lille.
Everton posted the following statement on their club website this morning:
“The club has been made aware of an isolated incident in a bar in Lille on Wednesday evening in which a number of Evertonians were attacked by a group of around 50 local men.
“The club understands that two Everton fans suffered minor facial injuries and were taken to the local hospital and that this was the only incident in what was otherwise a good-natured evening in the city centre.
“The club are in continual contact with Merseyside police officers who are in Lille today and the city’s police representatives.
“Supporters travelling to tonight’s match are advised to utilise the travel information provided on the official website where updates on any safety matters will also be provided.”
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