The Case for Koeman, M'Lord

David Cooper 30/09/2017  31 Comments  [Jump to last]

Writing this before we play Burnley tomorrow, and if things don't go our way, the verdict may already be reached. I hope that we get 3 points and the defendant will get a stay of execution.

I think Koeman is the "fall guy" for those who are pulling the strings – mostly Bill Kenwright but Farhad Moshiri cannot be exempt from blame. So here is the evidence as I see it.

Point #1

Koeman never wanted to sell Lukaku (who would?) especially with 3 years on his contract. Some of us were not that disappointed when Romelu Lukaku departed because all he did was score goals but mostly he did not look interested in anyone but himself. He was not a "True Blue". But who is these days among the players? Apart from Rooney and the youngsters who have grown up with blue blood running in their veins, who else looks really concerned when we lose – Williams? Schneiderlin? Gueye? But I am drifting off topic.

So Lukaku departs because Kenwright and Moshiri wanted to cash in, honouring some crazy gentleman's agreement in this day and age and saw the possibility of softening the blow with the return of the "Prodigal Son". What a wonderful bit of PR!The decision was taken out of Koeman's hands and probably made against his wishes. But like any CEO he has to "toe the party line" and welcomes Wayne with all sorts of platitudes.

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Koeman knows that Wayne is not going to replace the goals so agrees to say nothing on the understanding that a recognized goalscorer will be signed before deadline day. So we sign lots of players who are Koeman's and Walsh's choices but not a proven target man with 15 goals in his boots.

On numerous occasions, Koeman has stated he is not directly involved in the completion of transfers but expects that someone (Kenwright?) will deliver. Maybe he should have done his research! So, as Deadline Day draws closer with no signing in sight, Koeman expresses his unhappiness by pissing off and playing golf. A kind of reaction we might all do, if we had been let down by someone above us in the chain of command.

Point #2

When the Premier League fixture list comes out, plus having to play 4 qualifying games in the Europa League, we have the beginning of "The Perfect Storm". We need to win every match to qualify for the group stages but we have a squad that hardly knows the names of each other (well, that's what it looks like when they play).

There is no time really to complete a proper pre-season and get everyone playing together. So we look like a bunch of talented individuals struggling to look like a team and failing. But shouldn't we be prepared for this because we wanted Europe so badly?

Point #3

Adding to the "Perfect Storm" has been the loss of 6 or 7 influential players plus the transfer of Gareth Barry who, despite getting a lot of flack on here, was the glue that linked the defence together.

If he was here now, he may have been playing as the left sided centre-back – good in the air and on the ground. He would not have made the mistakes that Williams has made and would be a great role model to Keane, Holgate and Kenny. Maybe we miss Barry's nouse as much as Lukaku's goals?

Summary

So, when we add all 3 points together – none of which Koeman was directly responsible for – maybe Koeman is not to blame for everything that has happened?

Character Reference

I must admit I like Koeman's honesty and straight talking. I think Dutch people basically tell you how it is without any attempt to cover mistakes up. Yes, he has screwed up managing Barkley and Mirallas but weren't both of them hugely disappointing last season? His management style does not include the "arm around the shoulder" but if you don't want to play for the Blues, on yer bike!

He is stubborn but which manager is not. He also believes in himself. Would you want a manager of Everton who did not?

The Verdict

The verdict will come at 5:15pm tomorrow. Maybe a stay of execution or will Koeman pay the ultimate penalty for the foolishness of others and a sequence of events that ultimately were outside his control?

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Reader Comments (31)

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Peter Gorman
1 Posted 01/10/2017 at 00:09:07
You know David, I don't agree with a word of what you've written above but absolutely more power to you for giving it a go instead of telling us we are just being hysterical.
David Barks
2 Posted 01/10/2017 at 00:22:33
Lukaku only had two years on his contract, but regardless, we could have at least put up a fight. Beside that, I think the only part you have written that makes sense is that we should be looking higher than Koeman. Attention should be directed at the Board, because it is absolutely criminal that we didn't replace our record goal scorer.

And I think you nailed it with the PR crap of bringing Rooney in when we sold Lukaku for far below market value. From what I'm seeing, it doesn't matter who we put in charge if the ownership isn't actually committed to winning. No, not winning some games and finishing 7th. I mean going for trophies and making it known that the types of performances we've seen are completely unacceptable.

But, they don't seem to care. It was only when the third season completely unraveled on Martinez that they took action. But I look at his results with Belgium and how he has a team of talented players performing, and I wonder. I wonder what would have happened if he was given the money Koeman was given. Granted, some of his purchases were awful.

But he is the one that insisted on the youth set-up committing to playing total football, and we saw Unsworth turn those players into Under-23s Champions last year. Players like Davies and Holgate came through that youth system. Since then, perhaps it's not a surprise that those players have seen a decline in their performances. And don't confuse Davies running hard and putting in effort with his performances. His game has gone backward this season, and I'd say Holgate's has as well.

But I'm getting off topic. Koeman has made so many idiotic mistakes over and over again, like persisting with the negative formation of Schneiderlin and Gana in the middle. But I believe the real issue continues to be with the ownership. The fact should not be lost on anyone that, had we completed the agreed sales of Barkley and Niasse on deadline day the Board would have made money this Summer. Lukaku's warning about the lack of ambition, seemingly backed up by Barkley's refusal to sign an extension, should probably be listened to by us.

Derek Thomas
3 Posted 01/10/2017 at 05:25:47
As Christine Foster stated on a similar thread a few years ago Re. Kenwright(?)...Not so much 'The case for', more a plea in mitigation.
Ajay Gopal
4 Posted 01/10/2017 at 05:55:10
As someone who is even at this moment against sacking Koeman, I disagree with almost all your points, sorry!

Regarding Lukaku, it was Koeman who set the ball rolling by saying that "Lukaku should leave Everton to realise his true potential", or words to that effect! You can't blame the board for not keeping Lukaku, it was down to Koeman himself.

Regarding your Point 2, I don't know what point you are trying to make, except excuses for Koeman. Everyone knew the Europa qualifying matches that needed to be played and the PL draw was also well known. No one realistically expected to get anything much out of playing the Top 4 of last season, but the way we were absolutely hammered in each and every one of these fixtures (except, admittedly against 10-man Man City), showed a criminal lack of planning and preparation.

Regarding the departure of Barry, again it was Koeman responsible for his departure because he clearly rated his own buys – Schneiderlin, Gueye, the incoming Klaassen and Sigurdsson – higher than Barry, and he was not really bothered when Barry wanted to leave.

No, the present situation is his own making and only he can rectify the situation or be prepared for the chop. He could start by being more respectful to the club, its fans and its culture. Then, start respecting the players – Niasse, Barkley, Mirallas, McCarthy, Robles, Lennon, Lookman – they are all good players, but have been sidelined by Koeman to satisfy his own personal ego. I hope Koeman comes good – because I don't believe it is good for a club like Everton to be frequently changing their Managers. But the ball is now firmly in Koeman's court.

Paul Rimmer
5 Posted 01/10/2017 at 07:37:23
The problem with Koeman is that we don't seem to have any real plan. Square pegs in round holes all over the pitch and a formation that doesn't get the best out of the players we've got. We're not a pressing team, not a counter attacking team and not an incisive passing team.

In his tenure, the team has played well in streaks and played badly in streaks but I see no progress. He got a reaction when he first came – the players were fitter, arrived at Goodison earlier and his iron fist approach worked.

That seems to be wearing off and some players don't seem to like his methods. Players are scared to play – that's his fault – and if we play like we did on Thursday I think Burnley will turn us over. I reckon he'll be gone by December.

Peter Warren
6 Posted 01/10/2017 at 07:47:02
Agree with much of the article but Koeman's team selection both in personnel and formation is abysmal this season as too is his rhetoric.

If he picks the right team and tactics 80-90% of the time I'm sure people would back him whatever his personality. But we're lucky if he does so 10%. That is my simple issue with him.

He has lots of very good players in my view and lack of left sided cover is not an issue. A lack of striker is a load of codswollop too. Admittedly, one single player can be the icing on the cake but if that is the reason for all our downfall then that's simply bad management from the coach. No excuses.

Christine Foster
7 Posted 01/10/2017 at 08:12:32
As much as I have been angered by the actions of Kenwright and Co over the years, I really do not see much in the justification for all blame of our current situation to be laid at their doorstep. I think it may well be correct in assuming Kenwright had a hand in bringing Rooney back, but Walsh and Koeman must have sat together discussing transfer objectives at some point and determined those needs.

Assumptions made bare Barkley would go, that Rooney would be playing up front with a striker but, even if Koeman only got half of what he wanted, it is his complete lack of both tactical management to best utilise what he has and the appalling lack of man management to motivate those to bring out the very best in them. Basic requirements for any manager and criminally negligent in one touted as a supposedly top class one.

I know Dutch people very well, having lived and worked in Amsterdam for a number of years, yes they can be straight talking, blunt and critical but it is a fine line between that and arrogance that Koeman walks. "My way or the highway" is fine and dandy if you are in the top 4, not if you are in the bottom 4.

Christine Foster
8 Posted 01/10/2017 at 08:22:32
People talk of players as square pegs in round holes with Koeman, rather than utilising the correct pegs that we do have.

But above all else, and I believe it is a lengthening list, it is the appalling inability to play to a style that suits what we have with the players we have. The lack of a game management and by his own hand, the lack of choice in team selection.

The rest is mitigation but not of significance.

Sam Hoare
9 Posted 01/10/2017 at 09:18:48
I'm not sure anything really explains the lack of cohesion and plan on the pitch along with the dubious team selections but I do agree that Koeman's inability is letting Moshiri and the board off lightly.

I felt and still feel very strongly after the last window that the ambition that Moshiri spoke about on his arrival has not yet been seen. No team with genuine top 4 ambitions sells their best player and 25 goal striker for up to £90M and then fails to replace him.

This new era is still to deliver properly on the promises that it has made and though there have been positive signs such as the clearing of debt my expectation have been severely limited by what I see as three unspectacular and frankly unprogressive transfer windows.

John G Davies
10 Posted 01/10/2017 at 09:30:23
I see where you are there Sam, and would agree if you look at the signings as a whole. I said before the close of the window we had an unbalanced squad to start the season if we did not add to the signings we made.

But taken individually?

Pickford. Yes

Keane. Yes

Sigurdsson. Yes

Vlasic. Yes

Sandro. Yes

Rooney. Jury out.

Martina. Jury out.

Klaassen. Doubtful

My opinion only.

John Keating
11 Posted 01/10/2017 at 09:41:29
David. I think Ajay at #4 sums it up.
Danny Broderick
12 Posted 01/10/2017 at 09:52:23
We have bought good players, some of whom haven't settled in properly yet. But the biggest problem we have is nothing up front, and nothing out wide, and no pace throughout.

The recruitment structure at the club is all wrong. How did we end up buying 3 Number 10s? I can only assume that a list of targets is worked out. Presumably Koeman helps to identify targets on this list, but then he seems to have no input after that. That's why we have ended up with Klaassen, Rooney and Sigurdsson.

Why was the manager away for the weekend in Portugal on deadline day? It can't be right that he is so detached in the process of buying players. You can't tell me that Lookman was a Koeman buy, or the young lad we have bought from Newcastle, or even Calvert-Lewin for that matter.

What we have ended up with is a mish-mash of a squad, which any manager would struggle with. Time for Koeman to change something though, as we can't keep on picking 3 Number 10s. He needs to try something different, or the pressure will ramp up even more on him...

Martin Mason
13 Posted 01/10/2017 at 10:00:31
Very short on fact and long on conspiracy but it's another view.
Colin Glassar
14 Posted 01/10/2017 at 10:08:59
In this era of slightly psychotic, camera hugging, epileptic clown/managers, I quite like Koeman's laid back demeanour on the touch line. That's probably the only thing I like about him tbh.

Ian Burns
15 Posted 01/10/2017 at 10:29:40
David - everybody has the right to a defence; you have stated it but the TW jury majority says "guilty m'Lord".

I am writing this prior to the Burnley game and I am expecting nothing but a team of 10's, no pace, turgid performance until he brings on Niasse hoping somebody can grab an equaliser.

Joe McMahon
16 Posted 01/10/2017 at 10:58:57
Colin (14) I couldn't agree more!
Dale Rose
17 Posted 01/10/2017 at 11:14:16
The case for Koeman, interesting.

I thought he would have been the saviour of the club, experienced, former top quality player, who seemed to have made a good transition into management. Result, nothing, we don't even look particularly good anymore.

The qualifiers for the Europa League, weren't, despite all the pre-match hype, a statement of intent in any way shape or form. We are so many players down, it's untrue. The replacements have not been good. No fire in their bellies. The only bright spots have been the youngsters. Koeman is not Everton, we are going to end up being fodder for the top teams, an easy three points.

Verdict: show him the door, while we can, and before it's too late.

Mike Allen
18 Posted 01/10/2017 at 11:51:32
Everton or Moshiri wanted Koeman so I would expect that he came in on his terms. If we had Lukaku for another season or so it may have worked but for me it was the right time to sell him.

Koeman must have had a plan, spread the goals around rather than relying on one man; very few have chipped in over the past couple of seasons.

So we have Koeman and his coaching staff laying the plans for the forthcoming season he may well have pin pointed certain players who for whatever reason didn't arrive but he must have had a fair idea by the time the season started of how he was going to set the team up.

Well no; he appears to look clueless. the players he has brought in don't look up to the task and the players that where already here have gone backwards. The only player that seems to have improved is Niasse and he's been under Unsworth's wing.

And now the blame game starts 8 players missing through injury plus another 8 that he has pissed off no confidence who is that down to?

Love it he could turn it round and we are competitive for the next five years or so but alas I don't think so, Whatever happens to Koeman he is responsible for the poor uncompetitive sides he has put out this season .

Peter Warren
19 Posted 01/10/2017 at 12:09:01
He talks about missing players but Bolaise who seems like a nice fella was average at best for us before his injury. The only person of quality who is missing is Coleman.
John Daley
20 Posted 01/10/2017 at 12:19:05
Koeman was giving Rooney the big 'come on' well before the summer rolled round. He was publically praising his ability and saying he was "one of the players who can make Everton stronger than they are now" before February was even out. He certainly wasn't stuck on the sidelines giving it the sort of "gutted" silent scream Michael Corleone unleashed when his daughter got shot at the end of 'The Godfather Part Shite'. He was actively involved in the club's attempts to entice the player.

Claims that Rooney's return was foisted upon Koeman just don't stack up when you consider either his character, his words or his keenness to cram him into his starting line up at every conceivable opportunity. Why would any manager... let alone one who you claim is a stubborn, take no shit, straight-shooter, who shuns covering things up....countenance the recruitment of any player if his heightened coaching instincts were telling him he should really run a fucking mile?

I refuse to buy into the narrative that Koeman is nothing but "the fall guy" receiving flak that would be better aimed elsewhere, but even if I were so inclined, any sympathy would surely have scarpered along with his arse when he decided to go sun it while the search for a striker was still ongoing. If his response to looming disappointment on deadline day is to lob his golf clubs in his boot and say "bollocks to this for a game of soldiers" then he deserves to be lambasted as strongly as anyone else for the failure to snare an adequate replacement for Lukaku. If a target man was always that vital to his plans for this season, then he should have been hanging on the shoulders of those tasked with making it happen, like that really trepiditous restaurant twat trying to get Joe Pesci to settle his tab in 'Goodfellas', until the very last.

Wherever Steve Walsh looked on deadline day he should have caught sight of Koeman doing this out the corner of his eye:

Link

He should have been putting the pressure on instead of putting balls about with his golf...err.. bat.

As for Lukaku and his supposed 'gentleman's agreement' with somebody at the club, how do you know that somebody wasn't Ronald Koeman? Last summer, Lukaku stated he had finally agreed to stay after speaking to the new manager. Nothing about Kenwright or Moshiri making him an offer he couldn't refuse (or, at least, an offer where refusal would be a pretty hollow fucking gesture on his part, given no prospective buyer was waving a fist full of cash in the club's face back then). "Giz a year" is as likely to have come from his gob as anyone else's.

I also fail to see how the loss of Gareth Barry can possibly form part of any defence of Koeman, given the player's recent statement that he left because Ron made it clear he would receive minimal game time if he remained. Not that I'm saying Koeman actively pushed him out the door or anything. He's already proved he's pretty useless at that ("if you don't want to play for the Blues, on yer bike!"? Worked wonders so far that approach hasn't it? What did he do? Forget to unchain the bastards first before he gave them a push?).


Dave Abrahams
21 Posted 01/10/2017 at 12:53:26
A good try at defence. I agree with some of it, I just don't get this loss of the Arsenal striker being a big whole in his plans. The way Koeman has the team playing, selection and formation, how would any striker make a difference?

At Man City Calvin Lewin held the ball up well and has given good displays in most games he has played.It's the tactics and formation that has let the team down and Koeman alone is responsible for that.

If he changes (fuckin' fed up hearing myself say that), then we have a chance of coming out and giving most teams a game, stay the way Koeman stubbornly chooses then we go to the game expecting little and that is what we will get.

I need some of my anti depressive tablets every time I think of Everton now, and that is down mostly to our present manager.

Rick Tarleton
22 Posted 01/10/2017 at 16:23:30
Balderdash, pure Balderdash. He has spent large amounts of money on players like Schneiderlin and Sigurdsson who are midfield players who can't control a game. never once has Schneiderlin in his time at Everton been the best Everton player in any game.

The only thing I'd say in mitigation of Koeman is that he's been unlucky that Barkley was injured, but he probably wouldn't have picked him anyhow.

Klaassen looks a good Championship player, Martina as well, Williams is well past his sell by date. He buys Lookman and doesn't seem to want him, Davies is a fringe player.

This manager makes Moyes look adventurous and Martinez look shrewd.

Stan Schofield
24 Posted 01/10/2017 at 18:19:44
Koeman's apparent lack of tactical and man-management skills means there is no case in his defence. He should be sacked immediately.
Simon Dalzell
25 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:09:42
"Fall guy" – Sorry, David, but I would very much say our clueless "manager" is very much the architect of his own downfall. To me, going into detail is no longer necessary. Just watching is enough.

With the tools that have been available, Koeman is probably the worst in my 53 years a blue.

Andy McNabb
26 Posted 02/10/2017 at 05:50:12
Different day, different age, of course but I was genuinely pleased and hopeful when Moyes arrived.

Since then, I have been surprised at the appointments of Martinez and Koeman. Martinez because he had just been relegated with Wigan and Koeman because . well, unless I had I missed something really basic, I failed to see what all the fuss was about when we prised him away from Southampton.

If my facts are correct, since '97 when he first coached in the Netherlands, he has had ELEVEN coaching roles. So, he has stayed on average, less that two years in each job. I appreciate that some of these moves may have been outside his control but when we were doing quite well for a while last season and there were whispers about Barcelona's interest, it genuinely puzzled me.

I think we can fall into the trap of assuming someone will be a great coach because they were a great player and their playing career can buy them time and kudos not necessarily afforded to other coaches.

William Cartwright
27 Posted 02/10/2017 at 16:31:42
Correct Andy, I've been quizzed by guys at work on just exactly what has Koeman done to warrant such a solid reputation as a manager. On one knows the answer . . . .
Rob Dolby
28 Posted 03/10/2017 at 19:55:30
Good reputation to raise the profile of the club but not much else. The big question is who should replace him?

Mancini, Ancelotti or is Unsworth and Dyche too low profile. Me personally would give it to Unsworth to restore a bit of local pride and fighting spirit. We can't carry on like this.

Geoff Williams
29 Posted 04/10/2017 at 09:15:52
I've tried to think of one good reason why Koeman shouldn't be sacked and I can't think of one. I think he is still in a job because his sacking would be an admission of poor judgement by those who had appointed him.
Amit Vithlani
30 Posted 04/10/2017 at 09:26:26
The only case for Big Ron I can think of contains a large amount of a cheap Dutch brew he might (or might not) be imbibing just before he selects the team. I wonder if the case for Walsh carries similar alcohol content?
David Johnson
31 Posted 04/10/2017 at 20:21:59
I've always known that Kenwright is full of shite and now I know that Moshiri is too. He's a bit more wealthy but is absolutely full of shit.
Clive Lewis
33 Posted 14/10/2017 at 22:23:12
Steve Walsh whispers to Moshiri..."Marco Silva...."

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