Rafa Benitez has a decision to make in terms of his striking options ahead of Everton taking on Arsenal on Monday evening.

The Blues remain without their main forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who has been absent since the 2-0 win away to Brighton at the end of August.

Benitez confirmed on Friday that Calvert-Lewin will remain on the sidelines for at least the next two weeks, which means that there is a position in the side still to fill.

That's because Salomon Rondon was substituted against Liverpool on Wednesday and is very unlikely to be available for the visit of Arsenal.

Cenk Tosun got on the pitch at the very end of the Merseyside derby defeat, but in the latest edition of the Royal Blue podcast Adam Jones put forward the name of Ellis Simms.

READ MORE: Everton fans plan Goodison Park walkout protest during Arsenal match

READ MORE: Everton face important transfer window question as priorities pile up

Dave Prentice and Gav Buckland both debated the options that face Blues boss Benitez, assessing the youngster's chances and giving their solutions to the issue.

Adam: Salomon Rondon is still being assessed as Rafa Benitez said but it seems extremely unlikely that he'll be available for Monday's game.

Who do you play up front, or who comes in for Rondon?

Do you bring in like Simms to be a like-for-like replacement? Do you bring in Anthony Gordon to fill a space out wide and push Gray in the middle?

It's not exactly an ideal situation!

Listen to the latest episode of the Royal Blue Podcast in full by clicking here

Dave: Cenk Tosun, for me. He's the closest we're going to get to a like-for-like replacement.

Salomon Rondon looked much better on Wednesday. It was more his type of game, he was physically more imposing, he held the ball up well. Again never looked like getting a shot on goal, but generally it was better.

Tosun...we don't know, do we? We just haven't seen him for so long. But prior to his long layoff he was a centre-forward that thrived on balls out wide.

Demarai Gray is back and available, and looks bright and capable of getting those balls in. So Tosun is the kind of player that can thrive off that service, it's whether he's fit and sharp enough to be able to do that.

The reason I say that is he's got the experience of Premier League football, he's an international striker. Ellis Simms is a young boy who's not played for the Everton first team at all, and has just come back from a long layoff himself.

Must-read Everton FC news

What Simms will have in his favour is that element of unpredictability, Arsenal won't know a great deal about him should he be selected.

But it just worries me playing a young lad right from the start in a game like that. The time to bring him in is in the last 10 or 15 minutes of matches.

I think it's too much of a risk playing him from the start, which is why I think Cenk Tosun would be the more logical choice.

Adam: I suppose the argument would be, and I'll bring this to you, Gav, that Ellis Simms is the player who's just signed a new contract with the club.

Cenk Tosun is someone who only has six months left on his contract, and has had multiple chances over the course of the last few years. The club has actively been trying to sell him in that time but he keeps getting long-term injuries.

Have your say on what is going on at Goodison in our big Everton survey:

Why would you give Tosun another chance rather than Simms? He does have this sense of unpredictability and it's always a risk playing these young players.

But he's meant to be the future, isn't he? So why not use him now?

Gav: Because we're on an eight-game run without a victory, pressure is mounting on Benitez, and he's looking for a result on Monday night.

Adam: But does Cenk Tosun guarantee a result? I mean, nobody can 'guarantee', but...

Gav: Exactly, but this is the territory we get into.

We assume that experienced players will turn up and young players will freeze, when you just don't know!

This comes up that often we could do it as a standalone podcast, because it's just a repetitive theme.

Benitez said the other week that just because they're young players doesn't mean they're good players. I think the fact that he's left a couple on the bench for a few weeks probably means he thinks they're not good enough at this stage.

Pick the Everton team to face Arsenal:

The only other option is to play Richarlison up top and play Gray behind him or something like that.

That's a possibility. It's so typical of this season that Rondon puts in an improved performance and then injures himself.

I can't see youngsters playing, but not Tosun either.