Injured Everton midfielder Mikel Arteta has been pencilled in for knee surgery in Spain on Tuesday.

The 26-year-old will fly to Barcelona with club medical staff on Monday with a view to undergoing an operation to repair a ruptured cruciate ligament in his right knee the following day. Arteta is likely to be sidelined for at least six months but head physio Mick Rathbone, who will accompany the Spaniard for his operation, said he is already thinking about his comeback.

"We are going to Barcelona on Monday to see the knee specialist over there," he explained.

"We think he will operate on Tuesday and we will take it from there. Mikel is a very mature, strong guy and he's already talking about the start of next season."

Everton have still not been able to assess the full extent of the damage to Victor Anichebe's right leg.

The 20-year-old Nigeria striker was injured by a horror tackle from Newcastle midfielder Kevin Nolan at the weekend and bruising and swelling to the leg is making a proper examination difficult.

However, he is set to miss this Saturday's visit of Barclays Premier League bottom side West Brom.

"The scan has confirmed that he's badly bruised and he's also jarred the outside of his knee," said Rathbone.

"It's very difficult to clinically evaluate a limb when it's swollen. We are going to let it settle down over the weekend and then reassess.

"We may take him down to London and let the orthopaedic surgeon take a look at him too. Victor is very philosophical about it. He's wise for his age, it shook him up (the initial incident) but he's a tough boy."

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West Bromwich Albion
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Kevin Nolan
Mikel Arteta
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Everton
Victor Anichebe