Carlo Ancelotti reportedly said he took Alex Iwobi off in Monday’s EPL clash against Leicester City as the Everton midfielder picked up a hamstring problem.
Iwobi was withdrawn at half-time, with youngster Anthony Gordon coming on to take his place.
The Nigerian had been quiet in the first 45 minutes but part of the reason for that may have been as he picked up an injury.
“I wanted to use some fresh legs for the game,” Ancelotti told Sky sports. “Iwobi had a little problem on his hamstring so I took him out and after that I put on fresh players for the end of the game.”
Leicester’s hopes of a top-four finish in the Premier League were hit by a 2-1 defeat at Everton on Wednesday night, despite a second-half fightback from the Foxes.
Richarlison put Everton ahead with just 10 minutes on the clock and Gylfi Sigurdsson doubled their advantage from the penalty spot six minutes later after a long VAR review eventually punished Wilfred Ndidi’s handball.
However, Leicester responded after the break and pulled one back when Mason Holgate’s clearance went in off sub Kelechi Iheanacho (51) but couldn’t find a second, despite dominating possession and territory at Goodison Park.
The result leaves Leicester, who are yet to win since football’s restart, still in third but just one point ahead of Chelsea – who later suffered a surprise defeat at West Ham – and two points ahead of Manchester United in fifth and Wolves in sixth. Everton move up to 11th.
Everton defender Mason Holgate will miss the visit of Southampton because of a knock he sustained in Monday’s defeat at Tottenham. Holgate’s replacement at Spurs, Yerry Mina, is therefore set for his first start since February.
Winger Theo Walcott is available again, having not featured since March after abdominal surgery, but midfielder Fabian Delph, out since February, is still absent with a muscle injury.