“We never look to have excuses for having players not available”
Martinez said: “We are quite strong in every department – that’s what’s pleasing. We never look to have excuses for having players not available. We’ll never go down that route.
“The squad is ready and players have been working really hard. It’s going to be great to see what a new partnership can bring to the side.
“But, clearly, Gareth Barry has been an incredible influence in the last three seasons, none more so than in this campaign, where he has been involved in every Premier League game.
“He is going to be missed but the challenge we face is can we perform in a really positive way, even when Gareth is not on the pitch? We have to rise to that.”