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Not good enough.....

By Dave  Cooper :  30/03/2008 :  Comments (42) :
Where to start.....

Well the first thing was that the Liverpool manager unfortunately picked the right team to play us after getting beaten up last week. Hyppia and Riise returning to the back four did us no favours at all. Obviously they were expecting a physical battle up front which never happened.

Then look at the team that DM sent out... no surprises .... only disappointment. We cannot play 4-5-1 when Cahill is missing. Yet we do and play right into their hands by hoofing the ball forward at every opportunity. What alternatives did he have... well obviously none when you look at who was fit.

Can someone tell me WHY Gravesen is constantly on the bench but is never going to play? Can anyone give me a scenario when he would play ? apart from if we need to score a penalty?

I love that fact that when Arteta, Osman and Pienaar all are fit and have the chance to play the ball around we look GREAT but I'm not sure when that is going to happen again. To play the three of them means we are seriously out-muscled in midfield and means that Neville has to play there... once again he is just not good enough no matter how good a team captain he is. Did anyone else spot Pienaar trying to mark Babel at a corner???? I think this lack of height maybe a reason that DM refuses to play Baines at LB because that would mean leaving out Jags, Joey or Joly (or playing one of them at RB)... and given our lack of size we cannot afford that.

Against Fulham and now Liverpool, the only idea DM has in trying to get back on level terms late on in the game has been to throw first Lescott and then Jags up front. I must admit I thought that tactic went out years ago. Most teams now have a replacement forward to bring on... the fact that we don't is very worrying. Curbishley, two matches ago, had enough faith to throw in a youngster.... how come we don't??? Is Lucas J that bad??? If so why did we buy him??????

Should we just accept and be satisfied that we have "come a long way since the days of worrying about relegation at this time of year"? I think DM has done a very good job but I am now concerned if he can take us "up a level" whatever that means. One thing I do think DM is... is a realist... and although you would never get him to admit it.... I think he is comfortable of where we are now despite all the news comments etc. You wouldn't expect him to say any different.

So for this year we have to accept that we are "the best of the rest", that the Uefa Cup is where we belong and unless DM gets another £20+million we are not going to do any better.

Lastly, just to rub more salt in the wounds.... one of the current England CFs Crouch comes on to play the last 60 seconds. In a nutshell that's the difference ? currently we are just not good enough.

Reader Comments

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Dave Henson
1   Posted 31/03/2008 at 02:49:31

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I know some people might slate me but the fact is liverpool are a better team than us, just as Man Utd are better than them. Compare our squad to theirs and the difference in quality is obvious, even though they have under-achieved in the league. Money talks in football so we just have to live with that, unless of course we get our own billionaire.

I reckon DM is doing a good (not great) job but it remains to be seen if he can take us to the next level, ie, win the league. I want to see Everton win the league some time soon (not in 2050). To do that, I personally think that eventually we will have to get a foreign manager because they are the ones who can attract the best players from around the world. The only way we can be a top four side is by buying quality players that are just as good as theirs, or even better. Osman, Cahill, Arteta.... are good but they are not world class players. Our history does not deserve mediocrity!! We need to start being ambitious!

Alvin Lock
2   Posted 31/03/2008 at 04:30:52

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We are lacking the bite upfront without the services of Tim Cahill. I am beginning to fear that we will not win a single match from now to the end of the season without Cahill around.
John Hughes
3   Posted 31/03/2008 at 05:41:55

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This is the sort of article that depresses me as an Evertonian. Johnson, Anichebe, Cahill and Vaughan out, Peinaar just coming back from flu and obviously not on form, Arteta having an off period - DM has worked wonders in comparison with any domestic or foreign manager in the premiership today based on performance and position to money spent (can’t someone produce the stats on Toffeeweb?) - its the end of a tough season and injuries are beginning to tell and we’re running out of steam. What happens? Articles like this, and comments like Dave Henson’s - its Moyes’s fault.

Come on - we know its been a nearly-there season but Moyes said it could be all along. To say Moyes hasn’t done a "great" job is ridiculous, and to start nit-picking whether Lucas J should be brought on in a Derby is silly. We’re working with the remnants of a squad at the end of a long season and Moyes is trying to hold on to the momentum. Its going to be a difficult few weeks and we all hope we hold on to fifth, and maybe we can still sneak 4th (let’s not rule out Liverpool falling apart).
Jason Lam
4   Posted 31/03/2008 at 07:27:00

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Dave Cooper your last paragraph is ace. The shite really took the piss seeing we had 4 strikers injured ourselves. Fucking hell that was hard to swallow.

Having Arteta, Pienaar and Lescott messing about down the left wing is useless unless they can put in a decent cross. Wait, Yak was marked by 3 defenders and Ossie is 5foot2. Or they could square the ball for a long range pot shot. By Carsley or Neville. The midfield needs a fucking overhaul. And Moyes is only gonna replace crap with more crap unless we get decent investment.
pietro de seta
5   Posted 31/03/2008 at 07:46:48

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I fear that we are throwing everything away...I fear that after a very good season we’ll end up throw it all away and not qualify for uefa cup...I hope to be wrong but we’ll figure it out this sunday at home against tha last in the table. If we don’t win we’ll throw it all away..
I understand the injuries, flu, tired players but this is not the time to complain, this is the time to put portsmouth away from us and from a very deserved 5th place...
pietro de seta
6   Posted 31/03/2008 at 07:46:48

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I fear that we are throwing everything away...I fear that after a very good season we’ll end up throw it all away and not qualify for uefa cup...I hope to be wrong but we’ll figure it out this sunday at home against tha last in the table. If we don’t win we’ll throw it all away..
I understand the injuries, flu, tired players but this is not the time to complain, this is the time to put portsmouth away from us and from a very deserved 5th place...
james arnold
7   Posted 31/03/2008 at 07:46:00

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We were all very dissapointed with yesterdays game mainly because Everton didn’t really give it a go. But I think we have to remember how much we have improved this season. We are desperately short of quality when we can’t pick our best 11. For me , we need a couple of midfield players, one who gets up and down the pitch, we didn’t win one loose ball yesterday, everytime the ball was headed out Liverpool picked it up at both ends of the pitch and a wide player who can get past a defender, we must be the only club in the league who doesn’t have one winger (except VDM and God knows where he is). We obviously need other players too but if we only have a small amount of money, two top class midfielders who are not 5ft 4ins tall would give us more.
Rob Jones
8   Posted 31/03/2008 at 08:52:28

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’’To do that, I personally think that eventually we will have to get a foreign manager’’

Dave Henson - 3 words, Sir Alex Ferguson, yeah he has trouble attracting the world stars because he’s scottish doesn’t he, jesus get a grip, only the truely world class managers influence the clubs that players want to go to, it usually goes on a clubs success or reputation.
Dave Dawson
9   Posted 31/03/2008 at 09:02:43

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It was a poor performance but for me not unexpected given that:

1.4 of our five strikers were unavailable giving us no attacking options other than Yakubu.
2.Peanuts and Arteta are not fully fit.
3.Our small squad has already played as many games this season than the entire last season and are looking leggy i.e. look at our performances at Fulham and against West Ham.
4.Liverpool has a bigger, and as much as it pains me to write it, better squad than us that is currently suffering fewer injuries.

But, couldn?t we have done better:

1.Playing Baines at LB, Lescott in CB with Jags and Yobo at RB? Maybe Lescott is slightly better at LB than Yobo at RB but isn?t Baines much better at LB than Neville or Hibbo at RB?
2.Playing Manny from the start at CM, he may not be playing as well as he can but he is still better than Neville at CM!!!
3.If we showed more urgency to score in the 2nd half.
Adam Carey
10   Posted 31/03/2008 at 09:15:33

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I think that Dave Henson has hit the nail on the head. We are trying to battle our way into the top 4 and without the money and a larger squad behind us we will struggle.
Although I am gutted that we lost we have to take a step back and look at the situation with some perspective.
We are 5th and are still playing for 4th. Yes, it is going to be tough but lets get behind the team and stop bemoaning what we don’t have. Like it or not, we have a small squad to chose from in the next month for whatever reasons, and will need to make do with what we have.
Remember, 5th is progress.
Alan Kitson
11   Posted 31/03/2008 at 09:30:12

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I always thought the derby would go against us given our injuries so 0-1 doesn?t seem too bad. All I?ve ever looked for is to be ?Best of the Rest?as without any real money it?s ridiculous to expect more. But now I can see it all slipping away and if Moyes cannot reverse the slide we?re on and we lose 5th place, I think Kenwright should get rid. Come to that, perhaps someone could get rid.........
Paul Hennessey
12   Posted 31/03/2008 at 09:40:14

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Dave Dowson - why not play Neville right back?

How many games this season have we lost when he has playerd there?

2...

1 against Chelsea when we were 2-1 down before the game kicked off
1 against Fulham where he was replaced in that position by Hibbert after 10 minutes

Just play Neville at right back - Yobo is a disaster there.
Jason Lam
13   Posted 31/03/2008 at 09:29:05

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Yes it’s been a great season, we’re WIP, we would’ve settled for 5th at the start of the season. C’mon lads what better time to get fucking aggitated and worked up than now? :-) You can appreciate the season when the DVD review comes out in the summer.

Fucking hell I can imagine Stubbs putting in an extra gear at Goodison.. shit he’s playing for Derby!
Eamonn Turner
14   Posted 31/03/2008 at 10:29:15

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Anyone who thinks we are not making progress and David Moyes is not doing a "great" job clearly has there head up there arse.
Joe Wightman
15   Posted 31/03/2008 at 11:28:07

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I think Liverpool won the psychological battle when Cahill and Johnson were ruled out. Speaking to their fans, they genuinely fear both of those players, as do other opposition fans. But they would have looked at the starting 11 yesterday and known that we’d struggle to hurt them. David Moyes has been a credit to this club, but the players are letting him down. Yakubu is becoming the lazy arse we feared he would, Arteta has been off form all season, Osman only shows in flashes and Pienaar’s form has dipped since his permanent move was discussed. The defence are magnificent though. All we need is a win against Derby next week, and for Liverpool to lose to Arsenal. Then we’re back to 2 points behind. Not out of the realms of fantasy, is it?
Julie Naybour
16   Posted 31/03/2008 at 11:23:43

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John Hughes - I could not agree with you more. Sometimes reading these seemingly inevitable articles which always appear after a loss is more depressing than loosing. Call yourselves supporters?? There is a definite lack of gratitude, recognition and backing from a small section of the fan base who seem to think having these things means accepting medeocrity. It doesn?t - it just means we?re patient, realistic and true supporters. Eamonn Turner - spot on. Glad to see not all fans are so ready to turn against a man who has shown dedication, integrity, ability to spot a talent at bargain price and who quite fraqnkly has been an utter saviour of our club. Well done Moysey. We?re all totally gutted and disappointed with the derby outcome but we?re still behind you and the boys - at least so is anyone with half a brain and a heart.
Pete Williams
17   Posted 31/03/2008 at 12:18:57

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Personally I thought Liverpool were there for the taking yesterday - if we had our key players fit and on the field. Their goal came from a defensive error and apart from Gerard’s effort, we coped well. What let us down was too many in the treatment room, Cahill, Johnson, Vaughan and Anichebee - just two of them , would have made a massive difference. I was not too down, because there are clear and tangible signs that we are getting closer - but we must have the squad to deal with these abstractions.
Peter Roberts
18   Posted 31/03/2008 at 12:40:48

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Talking to a fairly balanced Red in work this morning - mentioned a couple of things about yesterday

One fit striker yesterday
Both our "wingers" were unfit and only passed late fitness tests
We were also missing our number 1 source of goals from midfield.

Given the crisis we have got in terms of injuries I?m pretty pleased we kept it down to 1, by half time it could have been 3 or 4.

We?re moving forward, this year was all about consolidation as a Top 7 side, we?re doing that. Let?s not get overworked on the fact we?re going through a bad patch, all teams do that once in a while. We have Derby coming up, a healthy 3 or 4-0 win will redress the imbalance and get us back on track, followed by hopefully another win vs Brum at Sanandrews.

And also just to clarify a point made about why not play Lukas J - is he not on loan somewhere?
Steve Roberts
19   Posted 31/03/2008 at 12:44:00

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I don't think DM can blame lack of strikers we have strikers in the reserve team. Surely he could have thrown one of them in even if it is a youngster. The Yak just aint got the pace to be a lone striker on his own upfront. Why doesn't he promote the youngsters ? are they really that bad? the formation was diabolical.
Nelly Blythe
20   Posted 31/03/2008 at 12:34:32

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To my mind to ’not give it a go’ is TOTALLY unacceptable whatever the personel on the field. I can accept lack of ability (Hibbert, Carsley/Neville in midfield to name but three ) but I cannot and WILL not accept lack of passion and/or desire and that is exactly what happened yesterday and against Chelsea in the Carling Cup at Goodison. I seems to me that too many of our so-called stars are happy to be exactly where they are at the moment...After all we’re not expected to challenge the top 4 even the manager keeps telling us that !!
Although it is obvious that many of are players whilst good are not GREAT this cannot and MUST not justify the feebly surrender that was served up yesterday. Once we went behind(mistake or not) every Evertonian in the land knew the game was over, we knew it and more importantly the players knew it, you could tell by their body language. We never won a header, a tackle , a second ball . You can blame all the injuries you like but most hurtful of all was the fact we had no PASSION and to me that is just not good enough !!
Oliver Molloy
21   Posted 31/03/2008 at 12:16:34

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I think if we are all honest, Evertonians everywhere most likely knew when the team was announced it was one which was never going to be good enough to trouble Liverpool in their own backyard. I have to say I was disapointed we did not look to be ?up? for the match, players all over our side look tired and jaded, form has deserted the midfield and I agree with those who comment on Yakubu being lazy ? the dive for the penalty confirmed that, and he has now become a marked man with that stupid piece of acting..

David Moyes has done very well this season, but the competition will be even tougher next season, and i believe that at the end of 08-09 we will find how much as a club we have come... The manager knows this which is why he is making noises regards what money will be made available to him for new players.

We need, and have needed for some time, a true midfield general in the middle of the park who can add that bit of class, and a lot of teams are looking for this type of player, so more than likely it will come down to money, and the name and reputation of the club/European football & manager etc..

This is why we need to stay in 5th place and our next match against Derby is now massive, we simply must win, but like all teams who have nothing to play for, and have been relegated already, suddenly these same players like the surroundings of playing in the Premier League and go all out to play out of their skin in order to attact the attention of managers ? like David Moyes!!!

I would like to see us a sign 4 very good players to add to our squad... proven goal scorer an attacking right back that can defend and zip good crosses into the box on the run,and be capable of hitting the back of the net if the opportunity presnts itself!!

As i said a midfielder with a bit of class and another with a bit of steel in the mould of a hard man but can play a bit too...
Come on you blues...

Ronald Christopher
22   Posted 31/03/2008 at 14:35:42

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Having read all the comments so far, I would summarize my thoughts as follows;

1. Yes, we should be glad that David Moyes has built a much better team over the years. We should be glad that we are at least competing for a UEFA Cup spot, playing in Europe and not fighting to avoid relegation

2. Having said that, we cannot just remain where we are i.e. competing for a UEFA cup spot, having a reasonable Cup run but not winning any trophies

3. We must be serious about moving up to the next level soon i.e. being able to challenge the "Top Four" and winning trophies. We are after all EVERTON, once regarded as one of the "traditional big five" but now overshadowed by the likes of Chelsea etc.

4. To do that we definitely need some more quality players and we must seriously consider whether David Moyes can take us to the next level. If we do not, we will fall further and further behind the top teams in all aspects i.e. trophies, ability to attract top players, revenue generation capabilities etc. The gap will just just continue to widen.

5. I know that a big part of the solution is "Finances" and being able to compete with the billionaire owners of the top four. If that is the "reality" then we must face up to it or be doomed to continued mediocrity.
Iain Latchford
23   Posted 31/03/2008 at 15:43:19

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I accept on the day the shite JUST deserved it. But I would have expected them to have the lions share possesion being the home side. I actaully think that after the goal we kept Torres very quiet. Basically we lost the game after a cock up, which is no disgrace really.

We need investment and some players just aren’t good enough. My heart sang when I saw that Hibbert/Neville combination. Both hard workers, both not talented enough. You honestly see better passing than Nevilles on a sunday morning, it’s terrible !!! How can he be captain of a club like ours with such little ability. I’m sure he’s a nice bloke and I’m sure he trains hard but that just isn’t enough.

Arteta’s free kicks and set pieces are woeful too. He either needs to improve or pass the responsibilty to someone else. How hard can it be to put a decent ball into the box ?? Thes people play football for a living for gods sake ! What do they do in training ????
Iain Latchford
24   Posted 31/03/2008 at 15:52:04

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That should read "my heart sank" it certainly wasn’t singing !!
Tony part
25   Posted 31/03/2008 at 15:41:15

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The problem is that Everton WERE once considered to big in the big five..Thats no longer the case now and we have to accept that..We have been over taken by the new generation of money clubs..We are a traditionally big football club but as the modern era goes we cannot be considered as one of Europes leading lights.. I would be very very dissapointed if in five years time we have still not moved any closer to winning a trophy, I say five years because thats what Moyes was quoted as saying how long it may take to move on to the next level.. We all know by now that its going to take money and lots of it to break in to the top four and be considered as a major force, as much as it may be romantic to think you can sign players from lower league clubs and hope they can turn you into successful clubs it just doesnt bear the truth..To move on again the board are going to have to really sit down with Moyes and see where they want to go..Do they sit down happy we are no longer in annual relegation scraps ( which we should never have been in year after year anyway) or do they really want to say ’right lets make Everton a truly successful football club once more’ because even Bill Kenwright must surely admit to himself that its been too long since Everton regularly played in big matches that mean anything.. Once again this week we have to sit back and watch Liverpool compete in another Champions League quarter final and Moyes will no doubt watch with envy despite what he says about achieveing things without needing money..We spent a fair bit last summer, at least compared with what we normally spend, and to some extent its made us better..We have won the most away games in a season since the 80s and we do at least have the makings of a half decent side again, but as with the other comments on here..We must NOT stand still and think we can go with what we have, we must keep buying quality players who can win us important football matches..We should have signed Defoe in January, never mind we already have a player like him, he scores goals,he always has done..No doubt Moyes will have is own plans for the summer but I just really hope the board dont stall on backing him with these plans to move us forward otherwise we may find ourselves needing a cheat to reach that next level we aspire..
Brian Waring
26   Posted 31/03/2008 at 16:44:48

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Nelly, spot on. If there was thing that I couldn’t stomach watching the game, was the way we just rolled over. That was one of the most spineless performances I have seen from an Everton team for a long time. The shite showed all the passion, winning every tackle, 2nd balls, everything. They even took their foot of the gas in the 2nd half, and still looked a class above us. I don’t care about injurie’s, etc, because no matter what 11 you put out, it is our right to expect a passionate performance, even in defeat. But we had 11 women out there, who looked like they actually couldn’t have give a fuck.
Sam Bones
27   Posted 31/03/2008 at 16:52:14

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Simply we cannot play the 4-5-1 without Tim Cahill,and whenever we do play it without Cahill we have two of the most unimaginitive players (Neville and Carsley) wasting to key postions by doing exactly the same job,when will Moyes realise.He should have started with Fernandez who i felt yesterday looked cunning and creative when he came on and produced one of his best performances in a blue shirt to date this season.

We are having problems with injuries and because of Everton’s luck in recent years it has come at possibly the worst time,but ever since we have felt the pressure of competing for 4th we have started slipping up.If we get back to winning and concentrating on our own position,we may just be able to sneek it from a Liverpool side who are going into three games they could have only imagined in their worst nightmares.

COYB
Anthony Lamb
28   Posted 31/03/2008 at 17:38:59

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Almost everyone seems top have covered the major issues arising from the defeat at Anfield but I would just like to add a couple of points for consideration. Firstly there is no denying the incontravertible fact that Everton just do not have sufficient strength in depth to really push into the fourth place as a matter of course. Example? Everton’s midfield on Sunday - total cost of all five players (including two who are still only here ’on loan’!) is LESS than Liverpool played for Lucas who is by no means their star asset! Then within a matter of weeks the striking "riches" which allowed Moyes to understandable bite the hand carrying £5million for McFadden, have been decimated by injuries until we can barely field one striker! Some of the comments have also touched upon the point of the team’s commitment etc. Whether that is true or not, what I feel IS undeniable, and sad though it is to admit it regarding Liverpool, but they simply have players of a mental toughness in key areas that Everton cannot as yet match. Like it or not Gerard is not such an outstanding player just because of his technical and physical attributes he has a mental steel which together with that of people like Carragher is able to impose itself on lesser mortals and inspire a similar focus in their teammates. People such as Piennar, Osman, Arteta etc simply cannot match that degree of mental toughness and thus when the team is struggling they eventually become suffocated by such relentless application. But a point that is perhaps worth keeping in mind when trying to get a perspective on where this all leaves Everton etc is that when you consider the respective positions of the two clubs some five years or so ago whose progress over those years has got them closer to winning the title? It certainly isn’t Liverpool who in fact have been treading water inspite of vast sums of money being spent and even on Sunday against a less than functioning Everton did not really seem in the same league as Utd or Arsenal at their best. I am not saying Everton are even close to winning the title but they are a damn sight closer now than they were five years ago and for that, at this stage, Moyes deserves our support!
Phil Abbott
29   Posted 31/03/2008 at 23:03:58

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The most troubling thing about all this is that the 1 out of 9 scenario comes on the back of our best performance of the season. Was it a case of a tired squad putting everything into that game and still feeling like they lost the cup final in injury time, whereas they should have been proud of that performance and been building on it. Yes the striker factor is absolutely crucial. However, Liverpool were not "there for the taking" as some said. The Manure result aside, they have been flying and now Benitez has finally realised that squad rotation in crap, they are looking very good. I’m sure that three points against Derby will come and that we will finish fifth. This brings me to my final point. Talk of "winning the league in the near future" and moving to "the next level" is hopelessly deluded. If we finish fifth we should be proud and celebrate winning the league, because that is, in truth, what we will have done. The top four have resources so far beyond ours, that to be as close as we are - and finish above the other 15 teams, is a cause for celebration. Nothing more can be done by DM so quit giving him gip and appreciate his fantastic achievements. Without a takeover by an oil magnate or similar, fifth will always be the dream of overy club outside of the top four. Until that happens, be grateful for the fact that we can enjoy our weekends far more often than not.
Si Wooldridge
30   Posted 31/03/2008 at 23:49:26

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The match was terrible, that much is true. We never looked in it and were lucky to keep the score at 1-0, although it must be said that they weren’t that great up front.

What baffles me is why we’re in such a rush to compete with the top 4, and I include Liverpool purely on a budgetary basis as they are the perennial also-rans. We’re just getting some kind of consistency and playing some really good football with our first decent European run. Isn’t that enough? Clearly not as expectations now seem to soared.

I would prefer us to finish 5th rather than 4th. I would prefer us to be able to consolidate so that we achieve some real consistency and finish 5th on a regular basis whilst really snapping at Liverpool’s heels, it won’t be anyone else unless any of the top 3 implode.

We have come a long way under David Moyes, there’ve been a couple of yo-yo seasons, but we seem to have put that behind us now. We have a chance to finish top 5/6 every year if we play it right and slowly improve our squad and maybe win something for the first time since ’95. Moyes is arguably the best thing to happen to us since Kendall and the job is nowhere near finished. We need to finish this part of the transition to a top class team as this season has shown that we’re not there yet.

Why the impatience now?
Wesley Mitchell
31   Posted 01/04/2008 at 00:20:50

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Reading all these comments reinforces to me that all us blues are at our lowest ebb this season but now is the time to take stock and consolidate our 5th position. Don't let this massive disapointment mess with your brain, hopefully we can finish 5th, Moyes will get £25 million to spend on 3 quality players in the summer and we will come back stronger next year! STOP talking bollocks about Moyes, he is our future not that fat spik from Stanley Park. Keep the faith boys because happier times are coming!
Steve Ryan
32   Posted 01/04/2008 at 09:30:22

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A few thoughts. 1. Anthony Lamb - nail on the head mate. Pienaar and Osman all lack mental toughness and are invariably anonymous against the top four. Inspite of their technical ability, their INCONSISTENCY leads me to believe that they are not good enough if we intend to break the monopoly of the big four.
2. If anybody else blames Arteta?s injury for his shit performances I will go crazy. Do you seriously think that Moyes would play him if he was injured?
3. Once more we have failed to capitalise on our great start to the season by not strengthening the squad during the transfer window. Kenwright is the problem with Everton Football club and if he can't raise the money then he should move on.
Griffin Silver
33   Posted 01/04/2008 at 09:51:26

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John Hughes & Julie Naybour sound like the only level-headed people out there. You can say it as many polite ways as you want but calling for Moyes? head or saying the lads ?didn?t have a go? is just fucking stupid. Just because we (for once) finished with 11 players doesn?t mean they weren?t having a go. They looked like a bunch of very good players completely knackered after a tough season, where half of them were playing injured, sick or just plain unfit. This season has been superb and a strong and sustainable improvement from the last. With some top quality additions in the summer we?ll be in a position to improve again and slowly up our points total each year. We?re still on course to better the points tally from the 4th placed finish of 04/05, quite significantly too. I, for one, think Torres is the best striker in the world and to fall to a good finish from him is no disgrace ? I think we coped with the pressure well and outplayed them in the second half despite our problems.
Ciarán McGlone
34   Posted 01/04/2008 at 15:17:52

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What kind of clown would prefer us to finish 5th rather than 4th?

oh, i know!

..the kind of clown who thinks we’re consistently playing good football!

The mind boggles.
Steve Brown
35   Posted 01/04/2008 at 18:29:55

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I felt like I was watching Boro at Anfleid rather than a Derby match, given that lack of effort, commitment and urgency. That’s not the manager’s fault it’s the players.The fact was Yakubu did not lead the line well, we were second to every ball and need a a strong replacement to Carlsley/Neville in the holding role. Overall as a squad 2-3 injuries and we look really exposed. PS to question Leon Osman as some comments do baffles me - one of our best players in this match and over large parts of the season.
Jay Campbell
36   Posted 01/04/2008 at 22:32:47

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Yakubu is a lazy twat!!!
Tim Michael
37   Posted 02/04/2008 at 09:00:46

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Sorry Dave but your article of 30/3 is a poor one. Look at the bigger picture. There was always going to be a time when form would dip and injuries affect us. Its not a coincidence that it came after the Fiorentina game. A great result but for no reward. Mentally draining and physically demanding, it’s been evident in our play since then. The Everton side of that night and before would not have lost at Liverpool on Sunday. The door for the Champions league is still open to us as this Liverpool side is erratic and prone to slip ups. However, one last effort is required from the Toffees, whoever is playing. A repeat of 2005 will then be a top achievment and the disappointments will be forgotten.
Richard Cranium
38   Posted 02/04/2008 at 12:15:28

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I can’t understand why he didn’t even put a young striker on the bench i.e. Jutiewicsz, Spencer or even Baxter. They would have been a superior option to Gravesen
Jeff Spiers
39   Posted 02/04/2008 at 20:23:16

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Nuff said about the football. What really concerns me is the obscene hatred both sets of supporters have. Time to knock it in the head before people die.
Nick Russell
40   Posted 03/04/2008 at 20:33:29

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Granted, Liverpool were better than us on Sunday. Granted we were missing a lot of players, and Granted we are going through a dip in form.

But realistically do Liverpool have a better team than us? Individals like Torres and Gerrard strenghten their cause and individuals such as Neville and Hibbo would suggest yes they have. However on a spread over the remaining players that were on show on Sunday, then I am of the opinion that our players would defo get in there team but not vice versa.

Comparisons such as Howard for Reina- for me Timmy would be the pick. Yobo or Hyypia-same, Pienaar and Babel- close bt still our lad can outshine theirs on his day, Arteta or Alonso- MIkky, Lescott and Riise-no contest. and even the Yak aginst there best player would cause some prem managers to change there formation to accomadate the both.

Its the first time in many years that this has been the case and the same goes for United and Arsenal.

We are a few players (replacements for Neville, Hibbert and Carsley) away from being on the next level, and one of those was on the bench ( Manny)

Bring on the funds and bring on the glory Days!
Jason Burrows
41   Posted 04/04/2008 at 16:21:28

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I know this isn?t going to go down well but I think that we sold McFadden at the wrong time! Everyone is going on about how we have a small squad and the derby shown that! I know we got more money from selling him when we did but he?s a big game player and could have pulled a magical moment outa the (uselly empty 4 Everton) bag.
I still think we?re moving in the right direction and as long as we get 3 points on sat them im sure we can still put up a fight for forth, but if not...... is fith readly that bad in a season when teams like Spurs, Newcastle and Pompey have spend big?
Steve Rewth
42   Posted 04/04/2008 at 19:11:01

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The long and short of it is we met the Shyte at precisely the wrong time on a downer after Firoentina and with players sick and tired. Get over it and don’t let the result against that lot define our season. I’m with the likes of Nick Russell we need a few more pieces yet to make a squad one that can sustain the challenge at the top. That Moyes is saying this publicly and challenging the board to find the reddies gives me hope. Face it the Barcodes would die to be us and for all the hype Ramos is no miracle worker. Moyes has done solid job on a shoe string and though previously doubted it I now think he can take us further.

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