Everton face being without captain Phil Neville for up to two months after the midfielder underwent a knee operation.
Manager David Moyes confirmed in a press conference after his team's Barclays Premier League game at Reading that former England international Neville had surgery on Friday.
The news is a blow to a team already without Neville's fellow midfielder Darron Gibson, who missed a 10th successive match with a thigh problem as Everton lost 2-1 at Reading.
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