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Rearranging deck chairs

By Michael  Newton :  10/10/2007 :  Comments (16) :
Last Sunday against Newcastle saw us surrender a point and again play hoofball with no wide men. Unlike most previous matches when changes were made too late, the manager made changes earlier in the game.

There has been a fair amount of support for Moyes in this forum and the willingness to see him get things right eventually. What appears to be happening though is the same tactics are being used game-in game-out and no common sense is being taken by the manager and his coaching staff. Players like Phil Neville can't get dropped no matter how bad they play. layers who offer the width and creativity like Van der Meyde cannot get a game. Moyes is playing his favourites and not the player?s best suited to getting results.

You might say what do I know? I've never been a football manager. It?s not just me though. It?s a significant number who are now turning against David Moyes and his tactics. Not just me and a few others, I have found less and less fans with any sort of defence of Moyes tactics in this forum each week or when I overhear people when leaving the ground.

The pressure is mounting on David Moyes to get the tactics right. I don?t think for one moment Kenwright will dispose of Moyes but other clubs have done so for less, ie Liverpool with Houiller.

Watching Everton can be like going to see the film ?Titanic?. Back in the days of Walter Smith you knew as the season stumbled on the iceberg of relegation was waiting around the corner to drag us down to the murky depths of the Championship. Now in a different scenario Capt Moyes rearranges the deckchairs on the Titanic whilst everyone else?s gaze is directed upwards to the possibility of becoming a top four club and bringing home of silverware to Goodison Park.

Rearranging deck chairs means (a) getting so caught up in routine as to totally miss the big looming iceberg picture, or (b) responding to concerns that you're not seeing the big picture by tinkering and fussing about at the scene's periphery when a dramatic change of course is called for.

You will have noticed that under Moyes:

  1. He leaves Neville out there for the full 90 minutes give or take one or two.
  2. b) Always takes Yakubu off in the midst of the second half
  3. c) When VDM is assigned a position on the bench he is never sent on.
  4. d) Makes no half-time adjustments to his tactics while his counterparts always seem to suss out what the second half will require of them.
One could go on and on...
  • Fusses endlessly with midfield personnel. Shuffles them from wide to centre and back again, selects either too many defensive minded players or switches to too many lightweight players.
  • Fiddles ad nauseum with the likes of Yakubu, McFadden and Anichebe. What to do with them? McFaddens?s a sub, then a starter, then a sub, then a starter again... Anichebe is a starter, a sub, a starter.
  • Acquires Jagielka but can't resist the urge to tinker and so eases him into midfield despite the fact he spent the whole of last season at the back.
One could indeed go on and on...

Now it might be said, of course, that there's always randomness to selection and substitution patterns but I'd suggest that with Moyes it's not so random as it might look. There's a depressing pattern of predictable inanity to these proceedings, so much so that you can set your clock by it. Anything to look busy?

Bottom line here: Dramatic change of course needed. Now!! There is a freaking iceberg just up ahead!!! I have resigned myself to not even making the Uefa Cup again next season with the clueless pair of Moyes/Irvine in charge.

I'm afraid to say that if we play with the same tactics v Liverpool the first bad mistake of the game will see the crowd turn on Moyes tactics and from then on we all know what happens. I believe only a major change of tactics and playing players in their correct positions will see us home v Liverpool.

We have some super players at this club and their potential is being thrown away. And so are the points. We will soon have to write this season off unless radical tactical changes are made. And it?s costing us ? how many more off the gate after Liverpool???

Reader Comments

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John Holmes
1   Posted 10/10/2007 at 15:23:13

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Sorry but I think a lot of your arguments are unfair. For instance - Moyes has dropped two of his ’favourites’ Carsley and Osman in recent weeks. Moyes has also tried to give McFadden a consistent start but he was forced to sub him last week because he was abysmal in the first half. Maybe the reason VDM doesn’t get onto the pitch is because he hasn’t shown any reason for Moyes to play him. I certainly haven’t seen any and unless you’ve been watching the team train where have you seen evidence that he’s up to the job? I play on the wing but I’m not calling for myself to be played just because we lack width

Moyes is moving things around because Plan A hasn’t worked and he’s trying to find the right balance to his side. It’s not being helped by the inconsistency or several of his players or the injuries to key personnel.
John Holmes
2   Posted 10/10/2007 at 15:28:48

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Oh and why must people always revert to calling Moyes and Irvine clueless or stupid or whatever insult comes to mind.

Whatever people think of their current performance they’re past achievement suggest they are any thing but clueless. Criticise if you must but getting into name-calling just makes you sound reactionary rather than having a considered opinion.
Andy Mckenzie
3   Posted 10/10/2007 at 15:36:56

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The fact we have our only two central midfielders out injured was bound to affect the football we play, it has’nt been pretty i think eveyone one will agree with that, but when they return the football will improve.

There seem to be a lot of people upset at moyes’s abilities as a manager and question if he can take us to the next level but remember were making small steps in the right direction and if we qualify for europe again that in my eyes is real progress.
James Elworthy
4   Posted 10/10/2007 at 16:04:48

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I think Moyes has tried to bring width to the club with VDM and Pienaar. Granted VDM has been a huge financial loss to the club whether you blame him or Moyes for that it’s down to you. However VDM’s fondness for the amber nectar is well publicised.
Pienaar could turn into a useful player he needs games, he needs to get used to the pace of this league and he has had some indifferent form at his previous club.
McFadden could be a possibility as a left winger which I think was the position he was brought to the club to play.
The best two attacking midfielders we have are sidelined Cahill & Gravesen and Osman’s form dips one good game 3 bad ones. I would just like to see Vidarsson given a game no harm done if he flops he flops but he is a midfielder with an eye for goal.
Fernandes would of been ideal but the dithering of the board and their inability to close a deal caused us to lose out here.
Lets hope In January we have someone of class brought in to fulfill this key role at the club.

Jon Steed
5   Posted 10/10/2007 at 16:12:47

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Alan Irvine ’Clueless’
/>Wasn’t Tony Hibbert reading Mr Irvine’s notes and diagrams for a considerable amount of time before being sent on as sub versus Metallist. The camera’s kept flashing to him whilst Irvine gave him wriitten instructions what to do.
In the meantime whilst Hibbert was busy digesting this jibberish Anichebe scored so whatever Irvine was writing down turned out to be a waste of time anyway
Did it say Hoofball everything that comes your way to Big Vic or Hoof it in the second tier of the stand or hoof it down to the corner flag for Pienaar to chase down.
Tony Marsh
6   Posted 10/10/2007 at 16:20:42

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Spot on Micheal.Exactly how I see it.Moyes after 6 years in charge simlpy does not know his best starting eleven
or his best formation and no one can argue any different.He does more pack shuffling than David Nixon.The way I see
the cub going reminds me of being a young kid trying to run the wrong way up the escalators for a laugh.Half way up you think you are going to make it to the top but slowly the ascent begins.One more
final lung bursting effort takes you a little further but finally you are back where you started ready to try again when the legs have recoverd.No matter how hard you try
you just cant find that little extra that will help you make it to the top.Its futile trying it again but try it you do.Just like Moyes and his tactaics.Get us nowhere but still persisted with.
DM Lover
7   Posted 10/10/2007 at 18:54:35

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DM rearranges the deckchairs because he hasnt got enough spare ones to replace them, unlike Beneathus who brings out 5 or 6 new deckchairs every game.
As Beneathus is able to purchase higher quality deckchairs funded by his American owners you would think that he would be challenging for the title.
However he isn’t as the deckchairs are uncomfortable due to their lack of use and have cobwebs on them whilst in storage.
However the well used deckchairs of DM shuffled round in and out of the sun showing their versality proving how astute DM is.
Al Dugan
8   Posted 10/10/2007 at 19:26:58

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Our biggest game of the early season is coming up of the posters wants us to change tactics and get Vidarsson a be honest, I don’t think that’s such a good idea right now. Tactics aren’t created or perfected overnight (witness our 4-3-3 a couple of games back). Fernandes is gone, no need crying over someone who isn’t coming here, and who knows the actual truth there. I don’t think we should pin our hopes on the Jan window either. Too much heartbreak recently in all the windows. I’ll take Timmy and Tommy coming back from injury and see what happens.

Truthfully, I’m more concerned with sorting out the back and then getting out of the two defensive midfielder appraoch.

Richard Dodd
9   Posted 10/10/2007 at 20:24:54

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Look at the stats.Apart from ferguson and Wenger, Davey is the Premiere’s most successful manager over the past five years.End of debate!
James Elworthy
10   Posted 10/10/2007 at 20:32:00

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Al : I didnt say to play Vidarsson against Liverpool but in another game even Luton Town give him a game, if he fails then no use keeping him.
As for tactics, I dont think anything works other than the tried and trusted 4-4-2, I havent mentioned tactics that was the author of this article.
However to have both your centre midfielders of the defensive type and the launching of the long ball from the back constantly to me are not good tactics. Yakubu as big as he is, is not a target player he doesnt win flick on’s.
All I would like to see is a creative player in centre midfield and the playing of the ball on the ground from the back, the odd diagonal ball, switching of play, balls pushed in front of overlapping fullbacks, nice crosses from the dead ball line by the wide men. I dont want to see big high balls coming back in our faces, passes constantly missing their targets and players not being used to their strengths,
Mike Brooks
11   Posted 10/10/2007 at 20:55:40

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Rearranging Deckchairs On the Titanic

A poem about concentrating on things that are unimportant and completely missing the bigger picture.

Oh no!
We’re heading for disaster
Full speed
Can’t go any faster
Too bad
Moyes doesn’t have a masterplan
Looks bad
There is no denying
It’s sad
We’re not even trying
Where now?
Jumped out of the frying pan

We’re sailing from the sunshine and heading for the gloom
There’s every reason in the world to panic
But while I can’t escape the feeling of impending doom
We’re rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic

No no it’s not alright
No no it’s not OK
No no Moyes can’t see the problem
’Cause he will never listen to a word we say
No no I’m not depressed
No no and you’re not manic
No no we’re just fine
Rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic

Strange forces
Tearing us asunder
Why us?
I can’t help but wonder
We’re fucked
As far as I can understand
Still Moyes
Carries on regardless
Blindly stumbling in the darkness
We’re lost
In a cruel and heartless game
Paul Okell
12   Posted 11/10/2007 at 09:24:38

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Rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic is a common idiom used in politics, particularly by the opposition party when the government reshuffles the cabinet.
Basically you have the same people but in different jobs.

What you are therefore saying is that David Moyes when in trouble reshuffles his team putting players in various positions but does not come up with the necessary tactics that are required to win the game.
If this is the point I agree with you because he does not seem to come up with the tactics with his reshuffle.
The common substitution is take Neville out of midfield but instead of taking him of all together he moves him to fullback and off comes Hibbert or last season Valente. I dont see the point of changing the back four at this point of the game.
James Elworthy
13   Posted 11/10/2007 at 10:39:47

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I don’t think anyone doubts the job Moyes has done with the money at his disposal.
He has made bad buys and good buys, I dont need to name them all, but what manager hasnt made good and bad buys,
Mourinho has bought some shockers such as Shevchenko, I always thought Man Utd buying Alan Smith was a waste, Wenger has made bad buys Jeffers for example, and i would need a ream of paper to list the bad buys the Liverpool manager and his predecessor have made.
Our history is littered with players who were good buys and bad buys irrespective of who our manager was.

However the thing that nags probably a majority of Evertonians are the tactics.
He does constantly reshuffle the deckchairs during the 90 minutes. He added an unnecessary 30 seconds onto the game last season v Man City bringing on Weir for Johnsonin injury time, only for Micah Richards to score in that extra 30 seconds.
He is involved in constant dialogue with Irvine during the crucial substitution period of the game which to me is the 60-70 minute mark. Things appear to get written down on notes by Irvine, subs warm up, players get switched from right to left and then finally after all the dithering someone is flung on. The player is usually a straight swap on the majority of occasions, the tactics remain the same, ie pump high balls to Vic instead of Yak, do nothing about the fact that since Carsley has been benched the back four no longer appears to have any cover in front of them. Change a full back which usually has little impact.
I despair at Moyes tactics. I dont think he is a bad manager at all I just think that he has got us to a level which I thank him very much for but is not capable of going further.

Moyes is like having a Chef who produces an excellent carvery at an all you can eat buffet for £ 5.99 a head but if you ask him to produce a 5 star meal at an Egon Ronay restaurant he would come up wanting because the punters want more than Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding on their plate, which is what we get served at Goodison. We get no dessert nor any flamboyant main course we have to do with the basic meat and two veg.
Terry " marsbar " Maddock
14   Posted 11/10/2007 at 12:49:47

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martin jol,mark hughes, gareth southgate,sam allardyce,martin oneil,alan curbishly,alan pardew,harry redknapp..etc etc etc.......Have all finished lower in thev league tan David moyes in the last 5 years...Are all these managers clueless?

Have any of them broke into the top 4 ever? surprising they have a job..

Do spurs play "prettier" football than us..yes I think they do..but thank you for the 6 points awy to them in the last two visits...pretty does not always work..

We are not playing atractive football with our small and half fit squad..we are "making do " at the moment.
We are in every competition..and we are still not up to speed...The glass will always be half empty for some..we used to be in the entertainment we are in the results buisness...
When the shite got battered by AC Milan for 110 minutes but still walked away with the cup, did see any of them upset at how they did it? the results buisness.
We have a manager who gets results..and he is trying to add flair..Graveson, Piennar,Yakubu..attempts for ferdandez , riquelme ,etc..but its not easy to attract top players .until you become a top club...and we are not there yet..and wont be until we have more financial muscle and a new stadium...Do youi honestly suggest that we go to the emirates or old trafford and try to pass them off the park..(dont worry lads , you will get twatted..but at least it will be pretty)..?
We all watch the same game..sometimes its not nice,defensive,route one..etc..but thats won Chealsea 6 cups in 3 years..they just do it better than us..Arsenal do there thing better than anybody else...
I think moyes is the man to get us where we want to go..but its bit by times we do play some lovely stuff..just not most of the time..again we all watch the same game..we just dont see the same things
Terry " marsbar " Maddock
15   Posted 11/10/2007 at 13:15:25

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just want to you remember....." This is not football, Mr Kendal"..!!! 1985
John Lloyd
16   Posted 11/10/2007 at 14:05:17

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Thank Christ for the last post by the marsbar loving Terry Maddock.

I was starting to go nuts reading some of the opinions on here. Are people just having a moan (which is fine) or are people genuinly suggest getting rid??

Why after all the investment and progress we have made in last couple of years would the board get rid? Although we have spent a few quid Moyes is still shaping his team, we are considered a top 6 side. We are in europe & still in carling cup (an achievement for us ha ha) and we are still getting results even though we are not playing well!! Imagine what will happen when we improve & have a full squad to choose from.

Who else would you have also? No-one in prem is good enough, so your either taking a chance on a European name or your on another young manager which is as much of a risk. (I’d keep an eye on John Collins at Hibs thpough, old boy who has transformed Hibs from lower reaches of SPL to early title challengers despite selling his best THREE players) but other wise???

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