London: Everton manager Roberto Martinez has refused to blame Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Eric Dier for a tackle on Tom Cleverly that saw the England international stretchered off during Saturday`s 0-0 Premier League draw at White Hart Lane.
Dier slid in on Cleverly just before half time and the 26-year-old former Manchester United midfielder is suspected to have sustained damage to his ankle ligaments and is awaiting the results of a scan, according to a report in the Liverpool Echo.
"It was an unfortunate action, when Eric Dier went with all the power and the strength of the world," the paper quoted Martinez as saying.
"He gets the ball and it`s unfortunate that he gets Tom`s leg, it wasn`t malicious, it was a nothing challenge. It was very fair," the Spaniard added.
"We don`t know (how long) yet. He`ll be out for a period, but Tom is so fit, any other player would have broken his leg there.
"So maybe with a little bit shorter period he`ll be back on the pitch," the 42-year-old manager said.
Everton currently sit ninth in the table on five points, with two draws in their opening four games of the season.
The Merseyside club have also beaten Southampton away and their only loss this campaign came against early pace-setters Manchester City at Goodison Park on Aug. 23.