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COLM'S CORNER, #66


Colm Kavanagh bust his computer... but now he ponders how Everton might bust the current goal drought

 

 STRIKE A LIGHT!

 

Danny Cad
Can he score?

I'm not going to knock Walter for giving Steve Watson the role as foil for Tomasz Radzinski up front as I personally believed all along that when we bought Steve Watson from Aston Villa we were buying a versatile player with an eye for goal.  

I recall him scoring two against Liverpool a number of years back when he was playing with Newcastle.  So, when he was given the role against Chelsea last week, I didn't think it to be as mad or as bad or as crazy an idea as some suggested. 

On the surface it does look out of place as we have other options up front - Joe-Max Moore (surely on his way out); Danny Cadamarteri (definitely on his way out); Idan Tal (another one heading for an exit door); and Nick Chadwick (too young, too lightweight?).  But whatever, the manager decided we were best served by adding a "physical presence" up front - and that was Steve Watson. 

Two games on, though, no goals scored and hardly looking like a side that's gonna score goals... well, something's got to change. 

If Walter persists with Watson as an emergency striker against Southampton next week and we don't get a result then he can only blame himself.  Why insist on a "physical presence" up front when we look far livelier passing the ball about to feet?  

I'm not his biggest fan at all but why not give Danny Cadamarteri a run out when the options are extremely limited?  He's a striker after all and love him or loathe him he's had a canny habit of scoring vital goals on the very odd occasion he's given a run out for the first team.  At least I'd like to see him earning his weekly wage by playing football. 

Nick Chadwick?  Is he too lightweight or simply too inexperienced to be given a chance to announce himself to the world via a stage used in the past by the likes of Joe Royle, Graeme Sharp, Michael Branch and Francis Jeffers to name but four? 

Joe-Max Moore?  Well, he must be wondering what the hell he's doing at Everton!  Why do we pay him to sit on his arse constantly?  As a striker he must be wondering, thinking to himself, that if the manager overlooks him for a starting position when two of his three favourite thirty-something crocks are (surprise surprise) out injured, and he prefers the right-back to play up front instead of him, then he has little or no future at the Club.  I think Moore has Last Resort written all over him it's the only way he'll get to play.

It's true that we are missing, errrr, the "presence" of Kevin Campbell at the minute.  I know he has his critics this year as he's not exactly firing on all cylinders but I like Kev.  I think he's a rather clever forward - not quite in the Sheringham mould mind you - and works hard even when not in possession of the ball.  I think, if fit, he could form a tidy understanding with Radzinski.  Big If!  When that happens is anyone's guess...

Goalscorers win games - they make the difference.  The same rule applies for all teams, be they at the top or the bottom of the League.  Playing a right-back up front on more than one occasion is something we'd half expect to see Claudio Ranieri do at Chelsea.  If Steve Watson is up there again, against Southampton in a weeks time, the pressure on him to produce the goods will be immense.  I'd rather see him back playing where he is most comfortable and that's at right back, where he belongs. 

Whatever happened to the old way of promoting from within (the reserves) when the opportunity arises?  We must have had a pretty shit reserve team capable of winning the FA Reserves League last year if none of them could get into an injury-hit Everton first team!  

Walter seems to be far too reluctant to loosen the noose and let the kids at it when the chances arise.  I know that opens up a can of worms about Walter and the kids with pro's and cons on both side of the 'argument' but I can't help but feel that Walter would rather stick to his settled squad of first team players that he has at present, play then out of position instead of promoting a player from the stiffs.  

Surely it is the aim of the reserve team squad and management to produce players capable of coming in to the first team, and playing in a recognised system, when given the call?

Colm Kavanagh

25 November 2001