“We all know James McCarthy hasn’t got a nasty bone in his body. It was a genuine attempt to win the ball”
And ahead of today’s Goodison Park clash Martinez said: “I always felt that Ross would be our No10 and he needed that space.”
The last time the sides met, at Upton Park in November, James McCarthy was in the firing line after putting Payet out for two months following a crunching tackle.
The Everton midifelder was only booked, but the Hammers were furious with co-owner David Gold even complaining on Twitter.
But Martinez hopes there won’t be any hangover with Payet now back on top form.
Martinez added: “We all know James McCarthy hasn’t got a nasty bone in his body. It was a genuine attempt to win the ball.