The Liverpool Echo’s head of sport David Prentice has recently discussed the injury issues which Fabian Delph has suffered during his career.
During the 2019 summer transfer window, the Merseyside club recruited the services of the Englishman from Manchester City for a fee worth up to £10m (per BBC).
Since his arrival at Goodison Park, the 31-year-old midfielder has made 27 appearances for the Toffees, in which he has neither scored nor assisted a goal (per Transfermarkt).
In Carlo Ancelotti’s side’s recent 1-1 draw with Burnley, Delph had to be removed from the action in the first half due to a hamstring issue.
The injury concern had Prentice discussing the former Aston Villa man during the latest episode of the Liverpool Echo’s Royal Blue: The Everton FC Podcast.
He said: “I understand that sympathy, the guy doesn’t want to get injured. He’s absolutely trying to get a consistent run together.
“He was energetic and he was getting about the pitch [against Burnley] and he was trying to make things happen, which is how the hamstring went.
“I’m just looking at his career stats now, he doesn’t play much football, and hasn’t throughout his career, to be honest.
“It’s not his fault, but you can’t really rely on him long-term. He’s 31 now as well, so is he going to get any less injury-prone? The suggestion is probably not.
“So, I think we are literally going to have just use him as and when we can, as maybe a substitute who can come on in games and play 20 minutes here, half an hour there when necessary.”
TIF Thoughts on what David Prentice said about Fabian Delph’s fitness…
As can be seen in what the journalist had to say, he does not believe that Delph can be relied upon by the Toffees going forward due to his injury issues.
Can Carlo Ancelotti rely on Fabian Delph?
No, he's too injury-prone
Yes, he's still reliable
Certainly, throughout his career, Delph has had a long list of injury problems which have kept him sidelined for a hefty number of games (per Transfermarkt).
Even when he does play, though, the midfielder does not necessarily impress, as in the five league appearances he has made this season, Delph has earned a weak 6.26/10 average rating (per WhoScored).
That average rating has made the 31-year-old Englishman the joint-fifth-worst performer to feature for Everton so far this term.
So, it would seem that Prentice is correct in his evaluation that Ancelotti may be better served by not relying on Delph going forwards.