After a superb breakthrough season for Everton last term, big things were expected of Seamus Coleman prior to the new Barclays Premier League campaign.

However, the 22-year-old's chances of building upon his burgeoning reputation have been struck a cruel blow after he suffered a torn ankle ligament in Friday's friendly defeat courtesy of Villarreal.

The news that Coleman will face a sustained spell on the sidelines will have been hard to stomach for Everton fans and players alike, but Phil Neville is backing the Irish 'warrior' to quickly overcome this latest injury complaint.

"Everyone knows what I think of Seamus, he's a fantastic character and a great person to have around the place," the Toffees skipper told evertontv.

"We have a real strong bond, we take the mickey out of each other but there's a real respect between us both, I respect him just as much as he respects me.


"He'll be missed over the next couple of weeks, we wish him a speedy recovery and hopefully the scans and the treatment is good," added Neville.

"With the attitude he has, he'll have no problems coming back fully fit. He's a real warrior and someone you'd like to go to war with - I'll personally miss him and I know the team will."

Meanwhile, Everton's opening Barclays Premier League fixture against Tottenham has been postponed due to a period of rioting in London.

Everton and Tottenham players alike have since taken to Twitter to express their disappointment, but also lend their support to the decision taken.

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