Everton's Martinez backs Boro for Premier League return

Middlesbrough have the quality to thrive in the Premier League and it is only a matter of time before they return to the top flight, Everton manager Roberto Martinez has said.

Everton take on the second tier side in their Capital One (League) Cup quarter-final later on Tuesday and Martinez is expecting a tough test from the side who are second in the table, having narrowly missed out on promotion last season.

"Middlesbrough will go into the Premier League and I think they are a team that is capable of having a very good season at that level," Martinez was quoted as saying by his club's website (www.evertonfc.com).

"It's just a matter of time before they get back into the Premier League."

Everton central midfielders James McCarthy (hip) and Gareth Barry (shin) will undergo late fitness tests before Tuesday's game after suffering injuries in the 3-3 Premier League draw with Bournemouth on Saturday.