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Still lucky Everton?

By Shaun Sparke :  21/10/2007 :  Comments (18) :
Merseyside derbies; don?t you just love them? Having read through all the contributions on here that were posted in the aftermath of the game, I can sense the frustration and anger from my fellow blues.

Some have used yesterday?s defeat as an instrument to reaffirm their dislike of David Moyes and point to his tactical naivety as the sole reason why we suffered an inevitable defeat yesterday. I wont glorify one particular contributor by naming him, as to do this would add to his ego and confirm his minor celebrity status on here. But his after match analysis was so poorly thought out, that I can only excuse him by assuming that his emotions had clouded his sense of rationality.

I have somewhat painfully watched a re-run of the entire game this morning, and have tried to remain as dispassionate as I can be, and do you know what lads, we didn?t play badly at all. In fact, apart from a nervous opening 15 minutes and the inevitable tiring of legs as ten men tried to take on twelve as the clock ticked away, we took the game to Liverpool.

I actually thought that Mark Clattenburg refereed the game in a sensible manner during an increasingly disjointed first half; he didn?t throw cards around just for the sake of it and was generally having a good game. This is what makes his second half performance so mystifying. Had somebody had a word with him at half time? It makes you wonder.

The main points of controversy have been well documented on here so there is little to be gained in going over them again, but I feel it is safe to say that even the most ardent of kopites could not argue against the poor decision to deny us a clear penalty at the death. Oh hang on a second what am I saying, Raffa has announced that Lescott dived, and that Idiot Redknap made himself look like a right donkey by saying that he couldn?t see any offence. No wonder Peter Reid looked as though he was going to explode.

I am not a Moyes apologist; (by the way, whoever came up with that phrase really needs to find something more suitable, as it is far too easy to add this label to everybody who defends the team?s performance as a Moyes apologists rather than an Evertonian.) However, I thought that Moyes got his team selection just about right yesterday. I could see his reasoning of playing Lescott at left back instead of the impressive Baines, and Lescott was my man of the match for us yesterday. I also liked the idea of starting with Anichebe and Yakubu up front. Ok, I have to admit it didn?t quite come off, as the service to the pair of them was very poor, but it?s easy to be critical after the game is over, and I suspect that Moyes was hoping that the pressure from our two big powerful front men might force the odd error from an aging Hyypia!

The midfield is a problem area for us at the moment; Arteta is increasingly being marked out of every game as word has spread regarding his influence to our performance. Ozzy, Jag and Nev are never going to be able to hold and pass the ball the way I want to see a midfielder play. However, they did all get stuck in yesterday and I was quite pleasantly surprised at the performance of Neville, as I didn?t see too much evidence of the long misplaced hoof down the channels.

Moyes must know that strengthening the midfield is a priority. We have Cahill and Gravesen about to return from injury and this should add to his options. However, we really do need to find that creative ball winner in the January sales.

Overall, I am still bitterly disappointed with the result against Liverpool, but I can?t say the same for the performance, we are going to play a lot worse than that this season and end up winning. For those of you who felt you had to write in after the Mettalist game and label us as lucky! Would you concede that we were unlucky yesterday?

Reader Comments

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glen strachan
1   Posted 21/10/2007 at 16:11:33

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Interesting post !

I still - even in the cold light of the day after - believe that Benitez will go - probably in May as another season brings no prizes to a fourth placed Liverpool side.

Yesterday was the poorest performance I have ever seen from any Liverpool team against Everton since Shankly brought them up from the second division.

If we are being honest about it only complete ineptitude on the part of their strikers even left that game as a contest after 15 minutes.

Victor’s header and Yakubu’s shot wide of the post were our only two near things and was our sole shot on target that magnificent yahoo from the useless Hypia ?

If they had been even half decent Liverpool would have and should have buried us yesterday.

I heartily agree that the insulting posts that seem to be reserved for David Moyes and James McFadden are utterly pointless.

Is this some foolish anti- Scottish bias?......surely not when one considers all the great players that country has given Everton over the years.

David is what he is and no matter how much we as fans like or dislike the Everton manager , he is going nowhere until either of two things happen.

1) A new owner takes over Everton
2) One of the Glasgow giants offers David a job back in Scotland and right now that only seems to mean Celtic as Rangers are more than happy with Walter Smith - the man who was also derided by many but a man who kept Everton in the top division and sold off virtually all of his better players to save the bank from forclosing.

Dacourt , Materazzi , Ferguson, Barmby were all sold to pay the wages of the players who remained.

Some people have very short memories and the ’i Love Moyes’ clan might do well to tone down the anti-Smith comments and check their facts.

When Walter Smith and his chairman discussed the fact that Smith felt it correct to stand down at Everton , Walter actually spoke to Moyes whom he had recommended to BK and was the conduit to the Preston manager’s arrival at Goodison.

In conclusion I believe yesterday’s defeat owed more to naive tactics than bad luck and one might make the same point about the approach of Metallist in their home game against Everton.

Since we won the first two games of the Premier season we have played a further 8 matches , winning at Bolton and beating Boro at Goodsion.

Can we honestly say that any of our four defeats were down to any aspect of bad luck or are we perhaps honest enough to concede that we were rather fortunate to pick up a point at home to Blackburn ?

A little realism would not go amiss at this stage - one quarter of the way into the season.

We are nowhere close to the top four - two of whom have now beaten us at Goodsion but on the upside we have the chance next weekend to show that we are a better side than Derby.

That game - one week from today - should tell us much about the real position of Everton in the Premier this year and may , in the long run , be much more important that the Larissa fixture against a team that will probably include another of these players that Everton had to sell- the now-veteran Bakayoko.

Interesting times ahead but insulting a decent young manager of Everton who is for many reasons just out of his depth a little at our club right now will help nobody.

The Peter Principle about if folks !
Tony Marsh
2   Posted 21/10/2007 at 17:30:42

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Shaun if you think we played well yesterday then I assume you are refering to the Rugby Union World Cup game.In fact/>its pretty hard to distiguish between a Rugby Union side and Moyes,s Everton these days.Playing well does not involve players launching long balls at isolated strikers as your only tactic.Jesus I give up.If this what fans are now accepting as being ok then we are well and truely fooked.Regardless of refs or penalties we played shite and have done all season.I dont know what it is you people want from the team you support.If its being a laughing stock and playing in a way that would make Graham Taylor cringe then you got it.If on the other hand you want to see the game played in the correct manner and be entertained by your side then boy oh boy we are a million miles away.How many more capitulations and horror shows can you take Shaun?I hope I am wrong but this Thursday could see more humiliaton heaped on us by a Greek
minnow side and what then?More sweeping under the carpet and excuses about Refeees? Wake up and take a look at other sides of a similar
stature or smaller than ourselves and you will notice that most leave us standing from a football side of things.Evertonians must be the only fans in the world who would lap this Garrbage up every week and then wonder why we always fail. HOOFBALL >never has and never will be succesfull/>so can some one please tell Deadly Dave.
glen strachan
3   Posted 21/10/2007 at 17:55:59

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Disagree completely about that rugby analogy Tony.

David definitely lacks the vision to coach rugby which is a far more complex game to teach than football.

The current tactics at Everton will be very familiar to most of our Irish fans. Everton plays exactly as Gaelic Football sides do with the long high punt for distance as the singular aim in the game.

So far bottom half of the Premier.

Is that acceptable fellow Blues?.........outfought by a useless Liverpool side.

Was that OK too or are Mr Marsh and I the only ones who spotted that ?

Never stood for mediocrity in my own life........hate it in my football team too.

Am I the one that is out of step ?

Is mediocrity now and into the future OK ?

Shaun Sparke
4   Posted 21/10/2007 at 18:29:30

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Tony, my comments were directed towards yesterday’s game, and NOT the team standards over the whole tenure of Moyes. I say it as I see it. I didnt say that we played well, I said that we didnt play too badly.

By the way I used to work with a Tony Marsh in Fine Fare in Huyton village about 25 years ago. It wouldnt be you would it?
Arthur jones
5   Posted 21/10/2007 at 17:43:34

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dacourt matterazzi and barmby were all walter smith signings , not bad players but never at any time did a walter smith team get us anywhere near the progress that Moyes has given us . Concerning facts , Walter Smith never wanted to leave Everton , Kenwright’s quote at the time was that he hated having to sack Walter . However I agree , he did recommend David Moyes after he was sacked . David Moyes got us to 4th place with a team that was being touted by eveyone to be relegated after rooney went , he bought players for a pittance who have turned out to be not just excellent players but real Evertonians , ie Cahill , Arteta and Nigel Martin , and other players who may have cost a bit more Lescott , Baines , and AJ who would get into most prem teams , OK he bought a few duds , but even Wenger has done that and that clown across the park in any other multi-million pound business would have been kicked out ages ago ! Without the Yanks money , liverpool would be doing a leeds utd now .
The point I was trying to make was that you can’t compare DM with Walter , I actualy like Walter Smith , a gentleman , but no where near as good a manager as Moyes . What everyone seems to have forgotten is that Moyes never had a penny to spend on the squad until 2 weeks before the start of the season when barclays extended the overdraft to £25m by which time most of his early season targets had been snapped up ,ie Smith , Koumas , and Richardson , and then the Manny deal was allowed to fall through , would this have happened if he’d conducted the deal in June and let the (sweet) F.A. and board sort all the 3rd party wranglings out ? Utd done it with Tevez , RS with Mascherano , Manny would have bee the one player who would have took us up one level , he was allowed to go by the incompetance of the board .
Our 4 defeats ? I thought we were unlucky against utd , a badly defended goal from a corner ? we gave them as good as we got , a draw would have been fairer , Villa , ? an offside goal against us when we were actually having the best period of the game , arteta didn’t play , Newcastle , definately deserved something from this game , were never second best to them , Reading ? we were actually really crap against Reading , conceded a bad goal and Faddy was unlucky when he hit the op of the post , I was actually right behind the goal there and thought it was going in but we were awful in that game .
I haven’t mentioned the injuries we’ve had this season , all teams get injuries but i can’t help thinking that if just one from Tommy G , TC or Vaughany had been available then our season would have been so much better to date . Incidentaly , this fashion of putting a label on fans depending on what your opinion of David Moyes is , amuses me . I’m an Everton fan , I have been since the first game I watched at Goodison Park in 1968 when I was 8 years old . I certainly am not apologising for that fact and I don’t make apologies on behalf of David Moyes or any of his fore-runners , but I am stating what is my honest opinion , and if anybody disagrees with my views then thats the day that this game will sink into obscurity , what’s footy without a good old fashioned argument ?
Arthur jones
6   Posted 21/10/2007 at 18:45:25

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a typo there sorry , what I meant to say was if nobody disagrees with my views ..... oops
Conor Feeney
7   Posted 21/10/2007 at 19:37:16

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I have to disagree with Glen Strachan. Gaelic Football is a much more sophisticated game than he suggests and it’s tactics have evloved just as Association Football has.
glen strachan
8   Posted 22/10/2007 at 00:33:02

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Hi Connor

I love Gaelic Football and I am not for a second suggesting that DM has the vision to coach that game either - nor that the Gaelic game is not sophisticated but it does give more obvious tangible reward to kicking for distance which is a central premise of David’s coaching.

My comment about the sole aim of the game being the long high punt was a comment on Mr Moyes’ methods rather than any insult to my friends in Gaelic Sports.

I would never be allowed back to County Mayo again !


I would describe both Walter and David as gentlemen - which is probably more than can be said about some of the ’critics’ of both who appear on these pages.

The fact remains that Walter has been a winner at both club and international level where David has been unable to win anything as a player or as a manager since his days as a trainee at Celtic suggests that your view of the latter as the better manager is at best something which is without evidence to date

Your version of the story about the departure of Mr Smith from Everton intrigues me but I wasn’t in the room to observe exactly what was said so I will stick with my version of the facts..............jumped/pushed ?
glass with David half full/half empty ?

I remain convinced that David is out of his depth and believe me I really hope for the sake of both Everton and Mr Moyes himself that I am wrong about that but the facts suggest otherwise.

Things can only get better eh ?
Tony Marsh
9   Posted 22/10/2007 at 01:22:45

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No Shaun I have never worked in Fine FARE in Huyton.Some how Supermarket graft is not my cup of tea. mate.As for Arthur Jones your whole article to me was not worth reading after the first sentence mate.Barmby was signed by Joe Royal not wally Smith so I didnt read the rest .in the tough world of being an Evertonian you have to know what the fuck you are talkin about for anyone to listen.You dont mate.Get your facts right before you spout off kidda.
Arthur jones
10   Posted 22/10/2007 at 06:52:08

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Tony Marsh, the only tough part I find about being an Evertonian is having to listen to bitter twisted and fortunately , very few , so called fans like you every week , If the team , manager , football, is so bad why bother to turn up ?? is it because you’re such a staunch Evertonian that you go come what may or is it because you have found a platform for yr small band of bitter minded allies who’s lives are so empty that spouting vitriol is the only escape from your tedium . I don’t care who signed Barmby , it doesn’t matter ,I do know what i’m talking about and I don’t have to ask your permission to make a point , if you don’t wish to read it then that’s your loss , you may learn something "" kidda ""
Dave wilson
11   Posted 22/10/2007 at 06:46:14

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Tony Marsh,
Every time I visit this site lately your making the same complaint, I know you get exasperated by some of the responses - I know i do just reading them - but theres no need, your largely preaching to the converted mate, we can all see what blatantly obvious
I would however take issue with you one thing, other teams playing good stuff ?
I havent missed a game this year and I know we havent played Arsenal or City - cant believe I’m saying them, but its what I’m getting told - yet and without exception they’ll all play a shite brand, it seems to have escaped everyones notice what insipid Garbbage Man U and Liverpool displayed, Chelsea are no better Theyre supposedly " big 4 "
Sorry mate but what I’ve witnessed and what you claim are in direct conflict
I know as Everonans we should only concern ourselves with Everton and by in large thats what I try to do
But i want people to start naming names, if you want to see DM go to make way for someone who will bring a more attractive brand, take the debate forward, who did you have in mind ?

Peter Venkman
12   Posted 22/10/2007 at 14:01:33

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Stop it everyone. Save your bickering and hostility towards the shite that has just "beaten" us. Of course people are going to have disagreements here, but the thing to do is not rise to the bait. We are supposedly all on the same side here regading club matters although at times one would be hard pressed to think so.
As for the weekend I like all and sundry here was left feeling empty and most of all frustrated following a performance in the middle that made Mr Magoo have the sight of an eagle. i for one am not going to let this little epsode ruin the start of my week. People like benitez and gerrard and even the referee himself know that they have done wrong and equally know just what they are, and how much they are despised at this club.

PS If any everton fan happens to see either gerrard or that referee on their rounds can they please hit them between the eyes with a sledgehammer as hard as they are physically able. I thank you.
Michael McManus, Dublin
13   Posted 22/10/2007 at 12:59:51

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Could I request that Tony Marsh revises his tone. We are all on the same side arent we?

Without wanting to be cliched but football really is about opinions. People are entitled to have differing views on our club and are entitled to disagree witheach other. In fact some would say this type of debate is healthy.

What is not healthy is people discussing issue in a scathing tone and sides being taken in an dismissive way. All everton fans want a successful team playing attractive football. How we achieve this and where we currently are in relation to achieving is up for debate. Thats ok and the sooner people grasp this the better it will be for the fans and the club.

Robbie Shields
14   Posted 22/10/2007 at 14:20:44

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Glen, I agree with you mate, and with Tony Marsh (Although once again not with the way he delivers his views and his attacks on fellow blues! Tony, please play nicely, we are all Evertonians here mate!). Liverpool where poor, we had 4 attempts in the first half, none on target but somehow we were 1 nil up. We didn’t play as bad as we have been but we were still awful. Yes, we should have had a pen at the end, but if Carragher had defended properly we wouldn’t have felt so hard done by. I’m not a glass half full person, but I’ve now become very dissolussioned with the Everton Way.

I live in Norfolk, me and my son (8) travel over to Goodison around 6 or so times a year at a round trip cost of £200 each time, I also usually go to 4 or 5 away games, I’m also off to Nuremberg with my dad and brother (Without tickets currently but hoping we’ll get in the Nuremberg end). I went to the United home game and that’s it for me this year. I can’t justify the expense, travel time (Takes 12 hours round trip) and time away from the family when all I see when I get there is the ball being hoofed 60 yards from the back to the front. I train my sons under 9’s team and teach them all to play to feet or space, pass and move, make triangles etc. etc. and we play really good football when it comes to our fortnightly matches. We win over 50% of them and always get good comments from the other coaches, this despite my team being very small and having some not so talented players to put it nicely. So I can’t help but get really pee’d off whenever I see the dross dished out by Moyes.

I’m afraid bottom half is a true reflection of our standard of football. I’ve decided I’m going to spend more time working on my kids under 9 team from now on, Saturday training sessions instead of going to see the blues. At least I get to see kids trying to play real football and I have an influence over it, if any of my kids kept kicking the ball from back to front he wouldn’t be in my side again! When Moyes is gone and/or Everton start playing football again I’ll make the effort to spend £200 and 12 hours out of my weekend to travel over to Goodison, then it would be worth it. Until then I’ve got a future Everton midfield genuis to coach.
Dave wilson
15   Posted 22/10/2007 at 18:07:41

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understand completely, after 40+ years of supporting the blues, I was so fed up with the brain numbing dross i was watching, I decided to throw me hand in last year - I only lasted about three games coz unfortunately I am the hopeless case me missus always said I was -
but like other posts yours tells me what I already know, what we all already know, we havent played decent footy for years
Your staying away till moyes goes, but who do you want ? you think by Moyes going things will improve, so you must have someone in mind, I want some one to throw credible alternatives into the debate
Steve L
16   Posted 22/10/2007 at 19:34:16

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I think you were right about Peter Reid. He came out of the Sky studio fuming. I suspect if he hadn’t left they may have had to pick Redknapp up with a shovel. He wasn’t even that angry when we had two sent off by Poll, and he wasn’t that happy then.
Robbie Shields
17   Posted 22/10/2007 at 20:47:20

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Dave, just got back from footy training with the kids and read your post, I’ve put forward Glen Hoddle’s name before for a couple of reasons, first he actually played superb intelligent football when he was a player (Way beyond the level of football for the time) and I genuinely think that good intelligent footballers have a better understanding of the game and know how teams should play and link up. Secondly, he has actually created a number of very good footballing teams in the past, Swindon, Southampton and Tottenham before going to England. I can’t claim to recall everything about his career as a manager but I do remember watching his teams playing and thinking... Yes, he knows how to play football and create entertaining passing teams, what I would give to see that at Everton again. Whenever I have suggested his name in the past I have had the usual negative comments like .... Don’t make me laugh..... or some reference to his use of faith healers etc. but I don’t see the problem with this, he managed to get Darren Anderton to play well for Spurs and England so there must have been something in it!

Another name I’d through into the ring is Peter Reid! Again, a superb midfielder who knew how to play the game and organise a team. It’s a bonus he’s a dyed in the wool blue, but he did a great job at City and a good job at Sunderland.

Apart from those two I haven’t got any other suggestions as I’m not going to claim I know lots about foreign managers, but I’d be more than happy for either of them to COACH Everton, not simply Man manage.

Compare both those ex-players footballing careers, abilities and intelligence with Moyes and the standard of football Moyes has produced over 5 years! Moyes may be a great man manager, but we need a brilliant technical coach, in my humble opinion anyway.

Let the ridiculing of my suggestions begin!
glen strachan
18   Posted 23/10/2007 at 00:04:34

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Interesting on a chat level...........who would replace Moyes ....but mostly a waste of time when we all know that BK has the only opinion that counts ...............................
Moyes will muddle on , prizeless and controversial until a new owner with at least a grain of ambition waves DM goodbye.

I saw the last promotion match that we played 53 years ago and I hate to even go there again but could our next promotion to the Premier be the first prize our Mr Moyes picks up ?

What else ? Any suggestions ?

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