South Africa international Steven Pienaar does not think he will be fit enough to feature in Thursday's Europa League clash against Benfica.
Pienaar has been sidelined since suffering a knee injury in last month's 1-0 win at Portsmouth, missing the games against BATE Borisov, Stoke City and Wolves.
He told the Toffees' official website:"I didn't expect it to be this sore. It just takes time though as it needs to heal on it's own.
"A few of the fibres split in my ligament so I have to rest and do my exercises.
"The Benfica match could be one game too soon but I'm taking it day-by-day. At the moment I'm struggling with running so I may have to wait until it feels stronger.
"I spent the summer at the Confederations Cup and, when I returned to Everton, I wanted to work hard, stay fit and not pick up any injuries.
"Unfortunately though sometimes injuries happen in football and now I have to climb the ladder again to regain my fitness. I know I'll then have to fight for my place back in the team."