The former Wigan star has emerged as one of Everton's most important players since joining last September. His injury was felt on Sunday and the Toffees need McCarthy fighting fit sooner rather than later if they are to mount a serious challenge for a top four finish.
Perhaps it's sod's law that three days after they've finally put together a good performance Spurs have to go to Chelsea who look more or less unbeatable. On the other hand, maybe this is exactly the right time to visit Stamford Bridge...
Spurs were so-so and won 1-0 because Partizan were worse. On Sunday, in-form Everton visit following their highly impressive 2-0 away win against Wolfsburg. Gulp.
This season Roberto Martinez's team have found it hard to replicate the kind of form that took them to the brink of breaking into the notoriously exclusive top four for just the second time. Despite an indifferent start, however, the Toffees have improved of late and the tightness of the league table so far means that a similar challenge could be on the cards in 2014/15.
Moving outside the comfort zone of the Premier League is a bold step for the Scot but if he can make an impression on La Liga, then he will prove to all of his doubters that he still has what it takes to manage at the highest level. Real Sociedad may just be the perfect place for Moyes...
As with any break, mangers and coaches have had the chance to regroup and plan the squad's development for the coming months. Improvement is the obvious aim for all the clubs, but for some teams the improvement will need to be far more dramatic than others.
Of the four, only Manchester United currently lie above Spurs - on goal difference - but they look more and more like the modern version of Ossie Ardiles's flaky 1994 Tottenham team which had the best attack in the league and the worst defence.
The talk at the start of the season was that Everton had done the best summer business they possibly could have done - possibly the smartest in the league. They were, it was said, serious top four contenders and they'd trouble the best sides over and over again. After three games, they've reached the lofty heights of 17th in the Premier League.
Naismith is Everton's highest rated player having scored in each of their opening league games against Leicester and Arsenal... His performance in Everton's 3-1 win over Fulham was lauded as one of the best substitute appearances in the league last season... Do you consider Steven Naismith to be Everton's unsung hero?
This was the game nobody could afford to lose, as it's presumably both sides' easiest fixture from the opening three games. In the next two gameweeks, both play Arsenal and Chelsea, so a loss in this game would mean the likelihood of no points from a possible nine... Here are six things to pay attention to after this tight and entertaining draw that went down to the wire.
My beloved Everton play their first game of the Premiership season tomorrow. But I will not be able to watch the game this season because the Government has banned all public gatherings until further notice, meaning that no cinema will be showing football games.
Everton footballer Steven Naismith has shown solidarity with unemployed people in the city of Liverpool - where his team plays - by buying tickets for jobless people for every home match this season.
By the age of 21, Lukaku has scored as many league goals as Sergio Agüero had (65), 21 more than Wayne Rooney (44), 23 more than Messi (42) and a full 44 more than Costa (21). What else does he have to do to prove his pedigree to Mourinho?
The microscope will be firmly fixed on Everton in the upcoming campaign to see if they can match, or better, their exploits from the previous year. In a way, Martínez faces the prospect of enduring his own form of 'second season syndrome'.
Is this really what football has been reduced to? A means of peddling crap we don't need, laundering the reputations of morally questionable companies and encouraging us to gamble away what little money we have left at the end of it all?
Two years ago Manchester City became the first team to win a Premier League title on goal difference. After their first win at Everton since 2009 they look likely to repeat that feat.