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Tony Marsh ? The Man's Got a Point

By Dave Randles :  09/10/2007 :  Comments (26) :

I was reading what was a very well constructed and beautifully honest post from Tony Marsh and was amazed by some of the responses it elicited. Questioning anyone?s Evertonian credentials in a response to any post, no matter how strongly you disagree with the content should be outlawed. Surely we all have one thing in common, proven by the fact that we are all prepared to sit, read and reply to the posts on this board?

The definition of a supporter of a club is surely one who, well, supports? That can mean attending the game as a season ticket holder, subscribing to Everton TV, buying replica kits or going to one game a season. If you measure a 'true? supporter by the number of games attended, then surely the same measure applies to where you sit in the ground? Therefore lounge members are 'truer' supporters than Park Enders because they spend more!? That's clearly bollocks so I think my first definition applies. Anyone who ?supports? the club in whatever sense is entitled to an opinion.

Love it or hate it, Tony Marsh has every right to his say. Sure, he sometimes shoots from the hip, sure he sometimes goes overboard and yes, he?s definitely in the glass half empty club and to be perfectly honest, if I were opening the Ellesmere Port Branch of Positive Thinkers R Us? then his membership application would be swiftly returned and marked ?gone away?. But, and here?s the point, cut the vitriol and unadulterated hatred out of what he writes and I think the man has a point. In fact, his ?point? is often similar to mine, though I am more considered in my opinions and am definitely slower to respond.

Some three seasons ago, I binned the season ticket I had held for 10 years. Why? Because to be perfectly blunt, the football being played was absolutely fucking awful and I was bored shitless sat in the Park End wishing I was somewhere else. In fact I often joked that the club should do a ?Virgin Atlantic? and put games consoles into the backrests of seats to entertain the punters. (Now there?s a concept worthy of consideration?!) A crowd of mates that was originally ten in number sitting together became one at the start of this season and to a man, the nine defectors would all cite the same reason for staying away ? they weren?t being entertained!

Those over at the Darkside endured a ?torrid? (?!) time in the league under the guidance of Messrs Souness and Evans and bought in Houllier to replace them. You may recall (as I do, with a lump in my trousers!) their treble winning season of 2000-01. That would have secured a job for life at most clubs, but no, 3 years later he was sent packing after ?taking the club as far as he could?. Their next manager comes in and wins the Champions League in 2005 and gets to the final of the same competition in 2007.

IMHO, we are now firmly re-established as a Premier League side after far too many years at the wrong end of the table and without a shade of doubt, credit for that goes to David Moyes. The squad is far stronger and, in a Layman?s eyes, we appear to be far more financially stable than at any other time in our recent history. (Ill-conceived ground move notwithstanding, but that?s another discussion altogether!) That said, the side we see playing now belongs to David Moyes.

Five years have passed since he was brought in (you may recall that snookers were required to keep us up in that first season, so again, all credit where it?s due!) and the players at the club are there at the wishes of David Moyes. So let?s get this straight: this is his fucking team, don?t give me the ?injury list? shite. He CHOSE to leave the chase for Manny so late, he CHOSE to bring back Gravesen and, despite his assertions to the contrary in the close season, he CHOSE not to beef up the squad with, and I quote, ?numbers?. So what we are seeing is David Moyes? side, playing David Moyes? style of football.

It is my opinion that our manager has now had time enough to stamp his name on the team and that what we are getting now is as good (or bad ? depends on whether you would get in my Positive Thinkers R Us Club!) as it is going to get. The standard of football in the Premier League (Arsenal and occasionally Man United aside) is pretty poor. This is simply because the economic reality since Sky invented football dictates that league placings are paramount. The term ?entertainment? now applies to the hoards choosing their games on TV ? myself unashamedly included, and not to the ?mugs? sat on the terraces.

So, and here?s the point, what do you want? Are you happy to play shit football and finish in 5th, 6th, 7th or 8th place every year, maybe have the odd European jaunt and go on the occasional cup run? (Chance would be a fine thing!) Or do you think we should do what the Darkside did when they thanked their Frenchman for his services rendered and told him that it was time to make the next step? Personally, I value being entertained when I do go to a game and not wishing I was somewhere else. Clearly, and this is demonstrated by a very high proportion of the posts on this board, that opinion is not shared by all.

To those of you that may ask who would replace David Moyes, I have the fortune of not having to make that decision and we have a very competent Board (cough & splutter!) to do that for us. There are very many managers that would give their eye teeth to manage in the Premier League that try to play football the way it should be, but appointing them will always contain an element of risk. Yes, I?ll concede that for every Wenger there are 10 Allardyces, but does that mean we should accept mediocrity? I don?t think it does.

My words may not be the same as that of our friend Mr Marsh, but I am now pretty convinced that the sentiment is the same, ?David Moyes, thank you very much for your undoubted hard work, diligence and commitment and more so for the shape in which the club now stands, but we?ve got to move on.?

Reader Comments

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Lyndon Lloyd
Editorial Team
1   Posted 09/10/2007 at 21:38:04

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Very nicely written article, Dave, and lots to agree with but in fairness to Moyes the choice "to leave the chase for Manny so late," was made by the Board, either in accordance with the desire not to "pay players for sitting on a beach," or because the funds that appeared out of nowhere weren't yet in place. With his emotions running high following the death of his mother, it nearly lost them their manager on the eve of the season as, rumour has it, Moyes made his displeasure at being hamstrung financially until the 11th hour of the transfer window known to his paymasters in no uncertain terms.

At the time, the thought of losing him terrified the life out of me. After all, he?d steered us back into Europe and secured a 6th-place finish despite having no real attack to speak of beyond two promising teenagers (although I, of course, concede that that was a situation largely of his own making.)

Now, I?m really torn over the whole issue. In my heart of hearts, I think that Moyes has taken us as far as he can ? even with money to play with I?m not convinced he can handle the more temperamental or creative players who will make the difference to our side ? but I?m equally nervous of the risks involved in removing him and replacing him with someone else.

Like many, I believe that we?ll have a much better sense of where we?re going at the end of the season... or February, at least. But then I thought that last season as well!

Brian Waring
2   Posted 09/10/2007 at 21:44:48

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Good points there Dave (now wait for the usual suspects to slap you down).The reason the redshite got rid of Houllier is as you say,he couldn’t take them any further,and in my opinion the same needs to be said of Moyes.It’s all down to how ambitious you are as a club,and I think if Kenwright and Co are happy with the Moyes type of football,well they can’t be that ambitious.Moyes is a half decent manager, and I know he has done a decent job.I just can’t understand how some fans rave about him almost to the status of a legend.
Alex Creevy
3   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:01:56

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Understand the sentiment, but comparing our situation with the very financially secure red she-ite doesn’y really make sense. In the current times Ambition = Money, we still can’t compete with the big four...can we really? Getting rid of the figurehead that has made us stable and secure in the league won’t happen until such time as (a) some major investor comes in or (b) Tony Marsh gets voted on to the board or (c) Results and performances drop below the likes of Derby, Birmingham or Wigan....unlikely! Or is it?
Whatever happens though, I am and always will be an Evertonian, I am proud to be Blue, of our history and mostly because we are not glory hunters, we are generally football savvy, opinionated individuals who express pleasure and satisfaction in equal measure to scorn and derision when it comes to our team. Although even my belief in the sanctity of being a blue has been tested recently....mainly by some of the in-fighting and vitriolic posts regarding the stadium debate.
Nil Satis Nisi Optimum - Solo Con Tutti, Forza Everton- Come on you Blues
Dave Lynch
4   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:06:14

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Very elequently put Dave.
It is what Tony, myself and others have been trying to say.
Whether Moyes supporters want to hear it or not, we are a stagnant team.
We are predictable in the way we play and his signings back that up.
He loves utilliity players and when he signs a player for a specialist position, they are not allowed to play to their strengths.
Although i gave up my season ticket, i will always attend the games.
It’s just that i now have an option and to be honest i feel more comfortable with that option.
Ben Brown
5   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:03:46

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Nice Dave, well written. I agree entirely with the sentiment, but the reality is a bit more problematic. It appears to be extremely difficult to make the step up from being a normal English team to a top quality foreign-influenced team. With Manchester United as an exception (aren’t they always, dickheads) all the current teams regarded as ’cool’ by the media (Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal, Spurs, Man City) have foreign managers. Mentally running down the league, there aren’t any others that have foreign managers, if you discount Irish as being foreign.

This is the big point that I think is symbolic of the ambition of a club. If we did get rid of Moyes, then we should get someone COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. For me this would almost necessarily have to be a foreigner. There are a couple of home managers I wouldn’t mind, Mark Hughes for example, but the point is that we shouldn’t swap Moyes for say, Curbishley. This is exactly the same reason that I wasn’t particularly excited about seeing Yakubu play. As a signing it stinks of banality. I would have been far more excited if we’d have signed a relatively lesser known Bulgarian or whatever for 12mil (i.e. Spurs).

But then this is the problem. Imagine if we got a foreign manager with all the promises of exciting football and a new club ethos, and he signs an unknown African for 15 million and the player, manager and entire enterprise doesn’t work at all and we almost get relegated. There is always the rather large possibility in football that anyone you employ will be absolute shite, for whatever reason. Hence most of the time Chairmen like Bill, and countless others around the country, prefer not to take risks and opt instead for the safety of mediocrity.
Al Dugan
6   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:07:56

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Let me ask the editors a simple is it that the posters who get the premium positions on the site are all negative in tone to the stweardship of the club. And obviously, they are the minority voice, correct?

I have in fairness asked Tony Marsh a dozen times...what would your tactics be? What are your COACHING credentials...I didnt ask him about his Supporting credentials...I have asked supporters for names of people or players they would like to see here that are in the realm of possibility and not just some fantasy played out on a computer game...but not one of you has said anything of the sort.

Who would you replace Moyes with? Again, the person who comes in will get his players in here, and that in turn will take a couple of seasons. Are you willing to go backwards to go forward, and how much more forward can you get? KNowing we don’t have the money other teams have, what do you do? Our marketing is dreadful, our rate of return from our merchandising is laughable, but still we are very competitive.

The question then for all of you is what realistically can you ask for? And what can be accomplished? Is Europe in the enxt round of the Uefa Cup not worth it? Is finishing in the top half not worth it? If the money we make from the TV rights goes into player wages and ever increasing transfer fees, are we just keeping pace with the Yak at 11 million? Is today’s 11 just yesterday’s 3-4? I mean is Darren Bent worth more than the Kid was worth a couple of years ago?

The game has changed. Break out your DVD’s tonight and look at the 1995 Cup dvd. Look at the pace of the match and compare it to today. Night and day. the defenders are bigger today, the forwards faster, the game is totally different in 10 years, and if you go back 20 years, forget about it. there is no comparison to the game of yesterday and the game of today. Maradona would not be able to play this schedule of games! Look at how the top players break down with all the fixtures compressed and falling into one another. How many matches did Spurs play last year with all their Cup runs? Look at Henry the last couple of years. A young footballer, but still not as strong as he once was. Look at John Terry. He has been playing football non-stop for alost two years now. Does anyone here think he’s progressed as a player? Look at the Kid, constantly hurt, do you think he has reached his potential with Sir Alex? Honestly?

Youth is wasted on the young. And when you were younger your memories of events are clouded by emotions. As you get older, the emotions are swept away, and you are left with the reality of the situation. You want it to be 1985 again, Tony. Well, it can’t be.
Dave Lynch
7   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:34:22

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With all respect mate. All your questions does not change the fact that we are playing shite football and have done for the best part of a season, taking into account the back end of last saeson.
Your’e right. Football is changing, Moyes though is not.
Mike Mcloughlin
8   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:15:31

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I think the article has its merits in many parts about it being Moyes?s team and we are not playing fantastic football. But we are still in all competitions and we are within a few points of the top 6. Why you want to compare ourselves with the redshite is beyond me. Why they sacked Houlier and Brought in the pigmy isnt really of any concern to me. We have always done things our way. Right or wrong. I think both you and Tony Marsh are entitled to your opinions no problem. But when Tony calls the pro Kirkby fans, some quite offensive names because they dare to speak up against his reasoning. Well, frankly that?s out of order. So for me he reaps what he sows. But that?s really irrelevant. What is relevant is has Moyes brought us as far as we can go. Well I think that is a matter for how far do you think he has brought us. I consider his tactics questionable at times. I consider some of his substitutions baffling. There are many times I have despaired at some of the formations he has put together. But still after all of that its only my opinion. I like you all are entitled to that season ticket holder or not. My point is that the man has brought us from the floor of the premiership to a point where I can at least have a bet with a redshite and have a chance of winning. That?s progress for me. How far we will be by the end of the season is purely a matter if speculation. I hope we win a couple of cups and get into Europe. Before Moyes came we didn?t even look like a top 10 side. No we are a top 6 side. We have been in Europe twice since 1995 and that?s with Moyes. Now I am willing to show him some loyalty I just wish others would too. When the club stops rising, and you cannot say that it has yet. That is unless you?re a psychic. Hang in there lets just see.
If as Brian says , I am a usual suspect. Then so be it. I consider myself a loyal Evertonian and will stand side by side with Moyes haters or lovers. I just happen toi like him.
Brian Waring
9   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:39:37

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Al we are not asking for miracles mate. Just for Moyes to actually get us playing some decent football.It is always the same predictable boring shite we play.It’s not as if it is only happening this season,it’s gone on for nearly all his time at the club.
Lyndon Lloyd
Editorial Team
10   Posted 09/10/2007 at 23:00:01

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Al Dugan: "Let me ask the editors a simple question... how is it that the posters who get the premium positions on the site are all negative in tone to the stweardship of the club. And obviously, they are the minority voice, correct?"

Despite your cynicism, Al, there is no favouritism here. Any Fan Article submitted that gets published as such shows up under the "Recent Fan and Column Articles" heading in the right-hand column in reverse chronological order (newest first, it's all database-driven). Same goes for the Mailbag underneath that.

The only "premium position" is the "Features & Articles" area and that goes to the pick of the submissions we receive ? well argued and well written pieces, like this one by Dave which probably merits a place in that section and may get promoted there within the next few hours.

If what you perceive to be the negative minority are the ones getting heard the most it?s because they?re the ones shouting the loudest and most often. It was the same during the Kirkby vote; it was the "no" voters who felt there was too much to lose by not speaking up that were the most vocal and they ended up in the minority based on the ballot.

My advice? If you don?t like the imbalance, rectify it by penning an article and submitting it to us. We can only post what we receive...
Dave Randles
11   Posted 09/10/2007 at 22:41:49

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Dave Lynch,

I agree entirely that Moyes is (or rather has ?become? ? remember the mad formations he played in the last few games of his first season? And they worked ? we stayed up!!! I guess he thought he had nowt to lose) a safe manager, hence the reason for him signing players that can play all over the pitch.

Therein lies the problem, and this backs up what I said in my original post, league placings are everything and performance standards are a very poor second best. The fact remains though that in every walk of life, pretty much every successful person has taken some form of risk, success doesn?t go round chasing, it needs to be chased and I just don?t see Moyes as ever being prepared to take any level of risk. (Yakubu aside ? fuck me, I hope he improves!)

And to Al Dugan ?

Sorry you read my post as being negative, I considered it to be balanced and after all it was representative of my opinion, so we?ll have to agree to disagree.

Like I said Al, I don?t have to choose the manager, but agree with one of the responses that any new manager should be foreign. I don?t think the success of foreign managers over the last few years is coincidental (Although they have had all the cash), the foreign impact on the game over the past 15 years has been immense and the old ?English? style of football won?t cut it anymore. All that said I don?t think Moyes is going anywhere anytime soon.

With regards to my coaching credentials ? I happily admit I have none apart from a love of the game, a lifetime of supporting the blues and knowing whether what I?ve paid to see can be classed as entertainment. (By the way, I never played at any particularly high level either!)

Personally, I don?t subscribe to the theory that you need to hold a UEFA Pro License to have a view on a football match, surely not holding one would mean keeping your gob shut through the whole 90 minutes! If you hold some coaching qualifications then fair play to you, but unfortunately that doesn?t mean your opinion is any more valid than mine or the other 35.000 people that support our club!

As a final point, you question as to why the Editors of the site ?how is it that the posters who get the premium positions?. I would hazard a guess and say they post what they receive and that they do not get too many glowing contributions. (There is another site with kipper in the title if you want to read unstinting positivity)

How about accepting this challenge? You post the antithesis of what Tony Marsh writes as a main article and I will promise to write a balanced and honest response to each point that you make.

Ben Brown
12   Posted 09/10/2007 at 23:51:48

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I think we should be Dutch (the nationality, not the person). Get VdM to recommend a Dutch manager, sign all the best Dutch players and generally make ourselves the Holland of the Premier League. I’m not joking, by the way. Chelsea were basically Serie A for a while, weren’t they?
Tony Swain
13   Posted 09/10/2007 at 23:36:36

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Everybody has the right to express their opinion on this website, although that does not mean they have the right to abuse others. I am interested in some of the comments about what makes a supporter and it beggars the question, do you support the team, full stop, no questions asked, or do you support the beautiful game as well, which, it would appear, is fast being turned into the ugly scrap. I have been thinking about why I decided to support Everton over forty years ago, as I was actually born in Birmingham, but had no allegience to any Brummie side (thank God). I played football as soon as I was old enough to walk and the game has always held a special magic for me, from schoolboy football with a leather ball to welsh league games where I played for a north wales side at right back and midfield. So what turned me to Everton. The geographical location was one reason as my family had moved up to North Wales and therefore we were quite close to Liverpool. But the thing that drew me to them was the fantastic football they played. To see Harvery, Ball and Kendall in midfield was a delight. The way the team stroked the ball around Goodison was exhilaratiing. That was the reason I chose to follow the blues. And I’ve been following them ever since, albeit from the other side of the world now. So instead of going to Goodison, I get up in the middle of the night, bleary eyed and watch them on the net. And while my nerves get jangled just before a game, I wonder now why I approach each match with trepidation, wondering how we are going to get on, even against teams we really should be beating well. The point I am trying to make is that for me, it’s got to be about Everton AND the football. If I wanted to vent my tribal spleen, I could go and support the All Blacks Rugby team, or watch the Auckland Warriors Rugby league side. No, this is about football, the best and most watched game in the world. The game that creates the most passionate response from us humans. I’ll never forget the image on sky tv a few years ago, when Leeds were relegated and the camera focused on a young supporter about ten years old, wearing his Leeds shirt and bawling his eyes out at the terrible fate that had fallen on his team. Thats passion for your team. But we must never forget that this is about the game of football and it would appear that many of us have different expectations in terms of the way the game is played. Thats OK. People like Tony Marsh appear to put the quality of football played as of prime importance at this moment in time and he has every right to do so. In these times of mediocrity, and that could apply to many things in life, it’s refreshing that he has the courage to stand up and say he wants something better. If others are satisfied with the quality of football on offer, then fair enough. I am mystified by responses to fans who want something better, although I will never support any kind of personal abuse dished out by anyone and the people who manage this site should jump on that very quickly. I would just like to finish by asking everyone who takes the trouble to post on this site......have your opinions and thoughts about the team, but don’t abuse each other.
glen strachan
14   Posted 10/10/2007 at 00:16:58

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Excellent post , Dave.............critical without being hysterical !

The Peter Principle and David Moyes ?

Your balanced discussion points really can only be condemned by the blinkered and foolish !

THE TRUTH WILL OUT ..............The Emperor’s clothes as the old story and song had it !
Steve Carter
15   Posted 10/10/2007 at 01:41:32

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As an answer to Dave’s proposition, have a look at the Pop Quiz in the mailbag section of this site. We are all passionate about all things Everton including whether David Moyes employs the right tactics etc. etc.; however, the objective reality is that when one considers relative financial and other material resources available David has outperformed - and in my humble view is still outperforming - all of his peers in the Premiership. I do not doubt that Dave and Tony have a very good knowledge of football - if only gleaned from many years of watching football and irrespective of whether they have formal coaching qualifications. However, I feel that one needs to give some credence to the judgment of one’s peers, and on that score David has been judged as the best manager in the Premiership by his peers twice in the past 5 years - and for the whole of that time on a relative shoestring budget.
Dave Randles
16   Posted 10/10/2007 at 08:10:04

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Steve Carter - I would agree wholeheartedly with everything you say, Moyes has done a fantastic job. You’ve got to remember though that his peers themselves are the very purveyors of league placings above entertainment!

Where do you reckon he would sit if there was a Premier League fans award for the Manager offering the greatest level of entertainment?

Answers on a postcard...
Steve Carter
17   Posted 10/10/2007 at 11:02:01

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I’m going to break the postcard rule, Dave. I agree that we are not exactly the entertainers. However, again in David Moyes’s defence, I think that’s because of the cattle we have and the cattle we can get with the money he’s given. Sure, one can argue he shouldn’t have bought Yak or he should employ this or that formation or tactic etc. But he hasn’t got and he can’t get Henry, Drogba or Ronaldo. Rather, he’s got Neville, Carsley, Hibbert At the end of the day, the outcome he’s paid to achieve is to win as many games as he can with what he’s got, and all things being equal, he’s done OK on that score.
Arthur jones
18   Posted 10/10/2007 at 10:42:00

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I am very much a David Moyes supporter and make no apologies for that , I admire everything he has done for the club , even down to the ’ People’s Club ’ remark , Which certainly rattled a few cages but I do agree that some of our football is less than exciting sometimes and some of his decisions are a bit dodgy (Spurs at home last season) but who except Arsenal are playing consistently great football , Even Chelski’s 2 title winning teams were a bit boring , Morinho’s press conferences were more entertaining , there is so much money at stake in the modern game that results are paramount , Abramovic got shut of morinho ’cos after the millions he spent , there was still not an exciting team on the park . Everton do not have that amount of money at their disposal , the failure to sign Manny was not down to Moyes , the funds were given to him last minute , he even tried to sign Riquelme , Appiah and Lucha , with little time to negotiate there was no chance , That’s not lacking ambition , it’s money grabbing stupidity by the board , I’m still not convinced that Yakubu was his choice of signing , he’s so unlike a typical Moyes player , The boards "feelgood " signing ? so close to the vote ? As far as Beneathus being a successful replacement for houlier , he had the typical RS luck , thy were lucky to get to the final , never mind win it , Of all the millions he’s spent , the only really good signings I can see is Torres and maybe Reina , the rest are not good . He’s universally being vilified for his "rotation" system ,
Leave DM alone , let’s see how the season pans out when the walking wounded return (why not identify this as a real problem ?) and not to forget , the january transfer window is coming up , lets see who he signs then
Mark Dodds
19   Posted 10/10/2007 at 11:25:36

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Tony Marsh is a very angry man with a lot to get off his chest. I feel sorry for the bloke. I think he just needs some friends to talk to. Me and Butch Wafer are there for you if you need it buddy. Keep your chin up.
Anthony Osullivan
20   Posted 10/10/2007 at 12:44:51

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Its not that anyone feels Tony has no right to say what he says i just wonder does he have to say it so often , Ive lost count now of the number of letter Marsh has posted that say nothing new. I also find it strange that when Everton do well or anything positive happens Tony’s letters dissapear.

When he complains about moyes playing long ball tactics and questions how we will make the next step with these tactics that he forgets Liverpool won the chmps league , cheslea have won the 2 titles and Arsenal under George Graham won plenty using the Long ball tactic .

It just makes his arguement ...well.. void !!!
Adam Baig
21   Posted 10/10/2007 at 13:11:19

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You’ve got them all going here, Rags, and still no reply from Mr. Marsh himself! For what its worth it’s my opinion that even in a league as poor as you rightly say, and as results orientated as you say, the fact is ninety per cent of the other teams play more attractive football than we do.
As one of the ’mugs’ in the stand you talked about, it winds me up to see a supposed team of donkeys like Blackburn pass us off the park.I also agree that the next manager should reall be a foreign one if we are to go to the next level. I keep watching Ruud Gullit on Sky and dreaming of ’sexy football’.
Anyway, Mr Randles, I would have expected a more Marsh - like grumpy posting from you now you’re in your forties!!!
I’m still in the Upper Bullens and will look forward to seeing you there should you get to any of the games this year, or unless we are both at any wedding/divorce parties over there!
Nick Entwistle
22   Posted 10/10/2007 at 13:35:11

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Is it a question of mearly being entetained more?
For me, the only way to improve the team is to pass on the ground. Thus inturn taking us forward and entertained. The hoof ball tactics have reached their limit.
Hopefully, if I am right, Moyes will agree, if I’m wrong, he’ll know that also... IMWT (just!)
David Siggers
23   Posted 10/10/2007 at 13:48:50

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TM credentials are questioned because of HIS posts on ths site.His insults people then compains when people respond in kind.TM called Moyes a "uselss jock"Very helpful!
Brendan McLaughlin
24   Posted 10/10/2007 at 14:49:52

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Two points Dave.

Firstly the reason Tony attracts so much criticism is not because of the opinions he holds but because of the abuse and vitriol he directs at any one who dares to disagree with him.

To the content of your article Dave, I really can?t accept that this is ?Moyes? team?. To me we can only apply this label when Moyes has been able to address all areas of the team. Are you seriously saying that Moyes would, if he was being honest, say that our midfield is good enough to compete with the very best in the premiership. Everton have gone through a series of transitions since Moyes arrived ? relegation battlers, mid-table obscurity and top tier contenders. This has been reflected in the players that he has brought in and discarded (Bent, Kilbane, Naysmith etc.) as Moyes struggles to find that elusive blend that will make us regular top table contenders.

Will he do it? I don?t know and I share many of the reservations expressed by his critics on this site. Nevertheless I feel he has earned the right to some more time and playing staff to prove either the Moyes ?bashers? or ?apoligists? right or wrong.
Dave Randles
25   Posted 10/10/2007 at 16:45:43

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Brendan, being called a Moyes basher doesn’t sit easily with me. I don’t think I am to be honest, in fact I think I’ve been patient if anything. It was absolutely not my intention to criticise him. I just think we are as good as we?re ever going to get under him in pure footballing terms. Let?s face it, even dour Walter?s teams were known to produce the odd glimpses of brilliance. That has happened VERY rarely under Moyes.

Overall, I don’t think anyone can disagree that he has done a very good job and think my post goes to some lengths to point that out. One thing is really troubling me though Brendan, how on earth can you not say this is Moyes’ side? To the best of my knowledge we have never had any players on deals that extended beyond 5 years, so does that not mean they are all his players, i.e. the ones he chose?? Sure, he would want Henry and Messi if he could get them, but wouldn?t every single manager (and I mean that without exception!) in the world? I?m afraid that?s a very weak argument.

This is David Moyes? side and they play the way David Moyes tells them to.
Brendan McLaughlin
26   Posted 10/10/2007 at 20:09:00

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Dave, I wasn’t calling you a Moyes basher no more than I was labelling myself an apologist. I was just reflecting that there are two extremes in this debate.with a lot of middle grond in-between,

I don’t disagree that this is Moyes’ team but it comprises some individuals that he bought as "stop-gaps" to transform us from annual relegation battlers to a team with top tier ambitions. Lee Carsley is a perfect example. Our midfield is particularly weak and is the one area where Moyes has not spent significant money.

When he does, we’ll see what happens & then draw our own conclusions.

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