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Fans Comment
Jez Clein

Mystic Jez What the next year will bring
26 December 2005

With a 4th place finish and Europe all but a distant memory, I have looked into my crystal ball and heres what I found:-

1st Jan the start of a new year and the start of a new dawn as, on the back on unprecedented demand for half-season tickets, the CEO Keith Wyness announces he is capping the amount at 2000 and has set up a waiting list.

2nd Jan the first game of the new year continues in much the same light as the old one as Everton win a scrappy game against Charlton 1-0 with a 1st goal of the season from Duncan Ferguson, who is back in the starting line-up after missing the previous game against Sunderland due to suspension following his sending off v Liverpool

3rd Jan With everyone hoping for a new pacy striker, the re-opening of the transfer window finally arrives; however, the excitement is soon turned to dismay as the 1st activity is a 3M transfer of Per Krldrup back to Udinese. It transpires that Everton had only paid 1M upfront for Per with the rest linked to appearances. With Per being injured early on and only returning after Everton had been knocked out of Europe and the purse strings consequently tightened, Everton approached Udinese in November to see if they would write off the rest of the monies owed in return for Per. Udinese agreed with the condition that he was not to get injured which meant Per was unable to participate in 1st team or reserve games. The official line was that Everton were delighted to recoup the money paid for Per as he was not the same player after his injury.

To add to the outgoings Marcus Bent is sold to Charlton for 1.5M to leave the headline writers dreaming of such headlines as Bent Double

7th Jan Everton travel to Millwall for the 3rd round FA Cup tie, winning a dull game 1-0. However the headlines are made after the game when Duncan Ferguson announces his immediate retirement. The game also marks Joseph Yobos last appearance in an Everton shirt for at least 3 weeks as he travels over to Egypt to join up with his Nigerian colleagues for the African Nations Cup.

Although being linked with dozens of players, the only concrete bid Everton make is 6M for Louis Saha; not surprisingly this was turned down by Manchester Utd as he had 3 hours earlier signed for West Ham for 8M!

31st Jan - With deadline day upon us, and progress through to the 5th round of the FA cup achieved, Everton already 3 players down stun the footballing world with three deadline day signings. Returning to Everton for the rest of the season are Alan Stubbs, David Unsworth and, just over 3 weeks after quitting the game, Duncan Ferguson!

The Liverpool Echo as well as the Official website both carry the pictures of the three players along side the chairman Three new signings the headlines say. Bill Kenwright uses the opportunity to remind the fans that these three signings show the Boards commitment to back the manager and that they will continue to do so. Both the Echo and the official website omit to point out that Everton made a profit of 4.5M during the transfer window and still didnt get the pacy striker.

8th Feb over in Egypt, Yobo is taking the African Nations by storm. On the back of the media interest in Yobo, Mr Kenwright is quoted as saying Jo is like a son to me, I would not sell him for 20M. With only 18 months left on his contract, Keith Wyness is despatched to Egypt to try and secure Jos services for another 5 years.

14th Feb it is revealed (although totally ignored by the Echo) that Mr Wyness has outside interests to that of his role as CEO of Everton. Bill Kenwright, when questioned about a conflict of interest, dismisses the allegations and blames certain fans for wanting to cause mischief.

19th Feb - Everton make it through to the quarter finals of the FA cup and in the draw they pull out a plum tie at home to local rivals Liverpool.

27th Feb the three league matches during Feb bring only 4 points as Everton continue to struggle to move away from the relegation zone.

28th Feb with only 400 half-season tickets actually sold (although half of that figure had been given away via local media) the ticket office start approaching those fans on the waiting list. With only 6 home matches remaining, it is thought unlikely that anyone will take up the offer.

4th Mar with the quarter-final tie against Liverpool only a week away, Everton finally get around to announcing the ticket details. Keith Wyness somewhat controversially puts all 40,000 tickets on general sale. After many season ticket holders complained that they were in danger of not being able to get tickets, Keith Wyness 36 hours later decided to give season-ticket holders a window of opportunity, although he did say that it was not his fault blaming Sky TV, the London bombings as well as the FA but he did promise that it would never happen again.

12th Mar after being soundly beaten in the FA cup and also hovering perilously close to the bottom three and despite the poorest football witnessed at Goodison Park for many a year, Keith Wyness once again brands Everton fans as stupid for suggesting that David Moyes should be sacked. He also accuses them of having a big club mentality, although in the same sentence boasts that the club is now in the Deloitte top 20 of the worlds richest clubs.

19th Mar with rumours of a takeover being bandied around again, Messrs Kenwright and Wyness announce that they are very close to securing investment from a group calling themselves the Brunei Sports Board (BSB for short). In fact, Mr Kenwright, went one step further and said that it was an absolute possibility...

7th May last day of the season sees Everton securing the point at home to WBA they needed to guarantee safety. That result sends down Newcastle. The now Newcastle manager Alan Shearer points to the fact that if the referee had seen James McFaddens handball on the goalline in the November game between the 2 sides then it would have been Everton and not Newcastle playing championship football next season. Sky Sports News Alan Myers manages to track down Bill Kenwright in his garden sipping champagne...

21st May 2 weeks after the end of the season, Everton part company with David Moyes. Bill Kenwright says that Everton will never again employ a red-headed manager but promises a world-class replacement. Keith Wyness, in his weekly Echo column admits that one of the directors, although not mentioning Paul Greggs name, didnt actually want to sack Moyes.

18th July with the new season only 3 weeks away, Everton are without a manager and a sponsor. The lack of sponsor means that once again Everton are likely to miss out on the lucrative pre-summer holiday rush for new football kits.

21st July After spending another 1.2M upgrading the corporate facilites, the subsequent increase in the lounge prices by another 120% means that there is only a 10% take up. Keith Wyness, although surprised, stresses that plans are in place to ensure 100% occupancy although he didnt say what they were. More bad news comes with the news that fans are voting with their feet and only 8000 fans had renewed their season tickets. Keith Wyness doesnt put it down to the 50% price increases but due to the poor performances on offer the previous season.

4th Aug with the new season days away and after having being linked with seven of the managers on show at the recent World Cup, Bill Kenwright turns to the tried and trusted blue Joe Royle and jokes at least he doesnt have red hair.

6th Aug a new sponsor is finally announced Chang beer

28th Aug the Echo reports that Joseph Yobo has turned down the best contract ever offered to an Everton player

30th Aug Newcastle offer a straight cash deal of 7.5M for Joseph Yobo which Everton instantly turn down

31st Aug Only 6 months after Bill Kenwright states that he wouldnt sell him for 20M, Man Utd sign Joseph Yobo for 6M payable over 4 years. Bill Kenwright admits that he had no option but says that Phillip Green negotiated the best deal he could on behalf on Everton. Unfortunately with it being Deadline Day there was no time for Joe Royle to sign a suitable replacement which meant that Everton were now down to a 1st team squad of 18 players 6 of whom were goalkeepers a legacy of the previous manager's fixation with goalkeepers.

12th Sept Keith Wyness announces that Everton were now not going to take up the BSBs offer of investment. Keith admits that at the time of the offer, there was a danger that Everton may have got relegated but now, with Premiership soccer secured for another season, the BSB offer totally undervalued the club

1st Oct a bombshell for Everton with the news that the council had withdrawn the grounds safety certificate and that any games would have to be played behind closed doors. Keith Wyness blames Liverpool for them not yet making a decision on their new ground.

4th Oct good news for Everton with the announcement that Evertons 8500 season ticket holders would be groundsharing with Tranmere! Keith revealed that Liverpool were asking too much to groundshare; however, the deal with Tranmere, although 2000 a match cheaper, meant that the players would have to put the nets up themselves

17th Oct plans are announced to build a brand new 60,000 seater stadium in central docks. Bill Kenwright admits that without their own brand new stadium Everton would be doomed. It is hoped to have it open in time for the new 2008-09 season. Bill allays fans' fears that money needed for team rebuilding would be being used for the stadium instead by stating that the money for a new stadium is "ring-fenced"...

18th Oct despite the release of the worst financial results in Evertons history, the Liverpool Echo donates front and back page to Evertons new stadium with no mention at all of Everton appearing to be 50M in debt

14th Nov Its the day of the AGM. There is a tear in Bill Kenwright eye as he reveals how he has been working 26 hrs a day 9 days a week to bring finance into Everton. A fan who suggests it may be time for Bill to stand down is heckled and accused of being ungrateful. Bill gets a standing ovation

12th Dec Liverpool finally get funding for their new stadium and work starts immediately in Stanley Park

13th Dec Everton announce that they will be groundsharing with Liverpool. On closer inspection it seems that Everton will be Liverpools tenants...

Happy New Year!

Jez  Clein


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