Michael Brown claims that the suspension of the Premier League has taken the pressure off Everton midfielder Andre Gomes after his return from injury.
The former Leeds and Portsmouth star, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, believes that the lack of games will help the 26-year-old recover fully for when the season resumes.
Gomes was ruled out of action after suffering a dislocated ankle against Tottenham in November, his return coming three months later in a defeat to Arsenal.
During his absence Everton had got rid of former manager Marco Silva and brought in Carlo Ancelotti, the Italian joining the club in late December.
Having played just three times for his new manager before the postponement of fixtures, Brown insists the midfielder can now focus on ensuring he is 100 per cent fit to avoid future problems.
Brown told Football Insider: “I think he’s a fantastic talent, as we know, one the ball, ability-wise and he’s had that little taste of coming back.
“I think now, pressure off, will help him. I think with an injury, the run of games going back in. I think that will give him time to step back, get all of the muscles correct all around the injury.
“You often get those little niggles when you come back and I feel that now will help him, it will help him settle down that he doesn’t have to chase and give him that little bit of composure.
“There’s one player I think should benefit from this – if he’s able to keep strengthening.”
Gomes has a total of 12 appearances under his belt this season, all but two of which have come among the starting XI.
He has the likes of Morgan Schneiderlin, Fabian Delph, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Tom Davies to battle for a place in the midfield.