Antolin Alcaraz: Everton opt against surgery for defender

Antolin Alcaraz
Antolin Alcaraz has played only nine Premier League games since joining Everton in July 2013

Everton defender Antolin Alcaraz's shoulder injury is not as serious as feared and he will not need surgery.

The 32-year-old dislocated his shoulder in a 0-0 draw with Swansea and was expected to be out for up to 12 weeks, but could now return in five weeks.

Toffees manager Roberto Martinez said: "We decided not to go through surgery. It reduces the period Antolin is going to be out.

"It is fantastic news given what we feared earlier."

Alcaraz followed Martinez from Wigan to Everton in the summer of 2013 but missed most of last season because of injuries.

Everton, ninth in the Premier League, have an away game at Sunderland on Sunday, but will also still be without Kevin Mirallas.

The Belgian winger suffered a hamstring injury in a 1-1 draw at Liverpool at the end of September, but is "two or three weeks" away from a return to action.

Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo and Sunderland full-back Patrick van Aanholt also suffered dislocated shoulders in the latest round of Premier League matches.