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Faith, Hope and Moyes!

By Christine Foster :  24/06/2008 :  Comments (14) :

If ever there was a condemnation of the Champions league it has surely come at its own hands. They have now recognised that the lion's share of moneys from the last season's Tournament ensured that the Sky 4 recouped a staggering £100m from their endeavours which even they concede is not a good thing for the National league as it increases the wealth gap between them and other clubs to such an extent that it allows them to make it almost impossible to break their stranglehold.

I say almost because but for a few bad decisions, it would be Liverpool playing in the Uefa Cup next season. I know that?s not entirely accurate either as the REAL reason we didn?t overhaul Liverpool and claim 4th spot was a direct cause that can be attributed to a lack of comparative finances. IF we had a larger and better squad we would undoubtedly lay claim to even 3rd spot.

But that?s the rub. The Premier League and the Champions League are all about the lucrative business of winning. As can be seen the rewards are great and if a team is to realistically challenge those same 4 they either have to be exceptionally well managed, coached and supported — something I think David Moyes has done brilliantly. But he really IS up against it. We have pulled some gems out of the woodwork in the past few seasons but when compared to those above us we look desperately weaker. It's hardly surprising that those clubs do succeed most years because they consistently have more funds due to the success and profile given to them. Sods Law, really. Success breeds Success, Money makes Money.

So how do we break the mould? I believe the next three years will see Everton topple Liverpool in the race for a CL spot and once done will allow the money machine to start in our favour too. We will need several new additions to the squad and to the team. I expect Moyes, astute as ever to find the best, but we do need a talisman of great international pedigree to build a great team around. They don?t come cheap but then risk against reward IS the name of the game. (Look at Tottenham — for all their moneys spent they received less than we did!)

Who could be that talisman? Do we need to have more than one?

As the season petered out because of injuries and form, we lacked the depth and skill (savvy) that in the end was the real difference between us and Liverpool last year. The Uefa Cup was worth the effort but not just for the money, as welcome as it is, but because of its profile and perception. On the TV, in the media around Europe, fans of other clubs see us and so do their players. Suddenly, perhaps, we will be a club players actually WANT to sign for instead of the past decade when players ignored us and choose poorer clubs over us.

So the Uefa Cup was a good thing, but I can?t see Uefa sharing the spoils of the Champions League any differently than it does now, except maybe to tinker at the edges. The imperative of success is winning trophies, be in it to win it. It's no wonder the rest of the Premier League look at us with admiration, they know how difficult it is to compete with clubs who consistently spend 20 times your budget. It's the Chicken and Egg scenario. To win you have to have money to spend on a team. To have money you have to win something... unless your'e Russian and own the odd oil field or two. (Perhaps we can get Shell to sponsor us?)

Look out Liverpool, we are about to break your heart. Roll on 2008 -09

Reader Comments

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Richard Harris
1   Posted 25/06/2008 at 15:47:07

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Christine Foster wrote "as the REAL reason we didn?t overhaul Liverpool and claim 4th spot was a direct cause that can be attributed to a lack of comparative finances".



The real reason was that we didn’t play well enough and compete when it mattered. Forget some dodgy decisions, lack of finances, injuries etc. We were awful in the first game at Fiorentina and although a heroic effort was made in the second game, we came up short for that as well. After that game we gave up too easily against Fulham and Liverpool, let West Ham, Birmingham and Aston Villa back into games that we should have won and to top it all could only beat an abysmal Derby 1-0 at home. NO excuses - we bottled it when 4th was there for the taking. Just as we bottled the first game at Chelsea in the League Cup.
Tony Marsh
2   Posted 25/06/2008 at 16:29:04

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Christine all though I cant stand LFC and it fans I do have to take you up on part of your article.The reason Liverpool are in the Champions League every season is because they have earned it.The Liverpool dynasty in Europe has not just/>happened since Sky Invented Footy but stretches back to what they built in the 60s and 70s./Liverpool FC had won 4 European cups long before the EPL or Sky got involved.


>Good leadership both on and off the pitch<>has ensured that the RS have become one of the all time greats of European football and if we are honest its what they always set out to be.


/>On the other hand look at our club and hows its been run since the time we where the Mersey Millionaires.We have come no where near the RS either domestically or abroad in that time so thinking its all going to change in the next 2 years is laughable.<

Untill we get an owner with a spine and some cash then I am afraid we will will be watching Liverpool on St Georges hall steps for many years to come.< />
Brendan McLaughlin
3   Posted 25/06/2008 at 16:23:00

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Cahill missing for most of the second half of the season. Arteta playing through the pain barrier for a similar period. Pienaar no way near the same player he was, after returning from the African Cup of Nations, until perhaps the last few games of the season. Vaughan hardly kicked a ball in anger all season.

Of course injuries didn?t impact upon our season, it was all down to ?lack of bottle?.
Brian Waring
4   Posted 25/06/2008 at 16:48:26

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Tony Marsh has it spot on. The shite have been european cup / champs league perenials, because they have earned it through good management on and off the field (apart from the yanks) and you could put your house on it, that they will do well in it this season. Also Christine, I can’t see us anywhere near them in the future, it hurts to say it, but they are miles ahead of us.
Tony Williams
5   Posted 25/06/2008 at 17:26:05

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Some say we bottled it...maybe but I would say that a big piece of losing 4th is that the Redshite only lost 2 of their last 20 games in the league
EJ Ruane
6   Posted 25/06/2008 at 17:29:36

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If you have loads more money than other teams, you can buy much better players than other teams and more of them.

If you have more, much better players, you will score more goals, concede less, win more games, have more points, so win more stuff.

This IS a generalisation, but it’s basically how I now see football.

When I was a kid, as much as I hated the lovable Reds, I knew that they won stuff (all the fucking time!) because their managers, trainers and players, did stuff better than us.

Now I just think well, if (like against Chelsea in the CC Semi) we’re playing against a side that’s got £300,000,000 on the pitch compared to our £27.000.000 they’ll almost certainly win.

Depressing?

Yes it is.
Richard Harris
7   Posted 25/06/2008 at 17:48:15

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EJ Ruane wrote " Now I just think well, if (like against Chelsea in the CC Semi) we?re playing against a side that?s got £300,000,000 on the pitch compared to our £27.000.000 they?ll almost certainly win."

So using a similar money argument, how did Oldham beat us at home ? Or did ttheir available squad cost more than ours ?
Michael Brien
8   Posted 25/06/2008 at 17:52:52

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Bottled it !!!!!???? What a load of rubbish. The fact that Liverpool have spent massively may have something to do with their claiming 4th spot. Also the fact that they got off very lightly as regards what happened at Heysal in ’85.Sorry to mention that but it happened.Yes I saw the banners of aplogy when Liverpool played Juventus. What a pity Liverpool did not see fit to apologise to the other clubs that were affected by the European ban.One that springs to mind is Norwich City who as winners of the League Cup in 1985 had qualified for Europe for the first time - only to be denied a place due to the European ban.

Yes Liverpool have been successful , but the money that the so called Sky 4 "earn" gives them a massive advantage.



As regards our poor performance v Derby of 1-0, I seem to recall that Man Utd struggled to beat them 1-0 at Pride Park around the same time.

Given the resources DM has done brilliantly - though it seems to hurt some of you to acknowledge that.
Richard Harris
9   Posted 25/06/2008 at 18:41:27

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Michael O’Brien wrote "As regards our poor performance v Derby of 1-0, I seem to recall that Man Utd struggled to beat them 1-0 at Pride Park around the same time".


A week later Aston Villa beat Derby 6-0 (and it could have been a lot more !!) away from home. So that makes us as good as Manchester United but not as good as Aston Villa ? No, not really !! David Moyes has done a great job under difficult circumstances but how many times have we finished off a team even when we’re dominant ?
Very rarely in the last five years (and don’t get me started on the many years before that). Yes it was a travesty that English teams were denied playing in Europe but until we get rid of the inferiority complex and stop blaming everyone for our bad breaks then we will continue to ’bottle it’ at key moments.
Christine Foster
10   Posted 25/06/2008 at 22:03:34

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Tony M, You're correct in saying LFC have a pedigree in Europe that we can only wish for and also that they have been well managed. Off the field, the club has been very strong in its management and vision but even that didn?t prevent their current spate with the US investors. On the field I think Moyes is as good as Benitez but didn?t have the resources to juggle.

It's a fact of life that if your options are severly limited your chance of cuccess is as well. That's what happened to us in the later part of last season, Our squad was so threadbare that we resorted to playing defenders up front. Playing people out of position etc..
The rythmm was lost, form went, players carried injuries.. yes I know, all of that contributed to poor decisions being made because we had to juggle what we had.

Thats surely the point, what we had. If LFC have a squad twice as big and individually more skillful of experienced then law of averages would expect them to cope beter with the same issues.

The fact they have the resources comes from the statement, Money makes money. The Sky 4 have the more of the pot. than anyone else thats why its difficult to break into that "elite"

We have gotten close, which is fantastic considering what we did have AND the way the club off the field has been in such turmoil for the last decade.

I have Faith in Moyes to deliver but Hope the club will back him to do so because there IS an opportunity to take and get into the top four. I left out Charity because no one gives us anything, when we topple an Arsenal of Liverpool we will have done it because we deserve it too.
Arlen James
11   Posted 25/06/2008 at 23:16:36

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I think the article was a good one and if we don?t think we can beat the reds then we never will. We are more than keeping up with them given the ridiculous budget they?ve wasted since about 1995.

We suffered with decisions this season (although not in Europe) but the idea we bottled it is rubbish. The lads were knackered. Maybe Moyes should have replaced Faddy with someone in Jan but there was little time.

Can everyone please just accept we have a class set of 11 players and did very well to finish fifth!!!!! Moyes pulled off another minor miracle and those who criticise need to learn Economics.
Michael Brien
12   Posted 26/06/2008 at 07:26:36

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Richard Harris - the point I was making about Man United was that not everybody hammered Derby last season.It seems to me that when we get a bad result or even win by a narrow margin, when a big victory is expected - the team and manager get hammered by criticism

I think there are some folks out there - and you know who you are - who begrudge any praise to Moyes at all and are only too ready to criticise.

And Richard - I am not blaming others for our bad breaks,I am merely stating facts that some people have been too ready to forget.

I can remember a time when we used to regularly beat Man Utd and Chelsea (for example) at Goodison.I believe that things go in cycles - what goes round comes around - these Sky 4 clubs are dominant now but its not going to last.Football history has many instances of dominant clubs who then decline/tread water. Yes our dear neighbours make 4th place and they have Eurpean success - but no domestic title since the early 1990’s. And I recall Man Utd’s title in 1992 -93 was their first since 1966-67.

We are heading in the right direction and although we may not get to the "promised land" as quickly as some of us would like - we Are getting there. Let’s just show a bit of faith in our manager - I do not think Moyes is always right, I do not think he is the best thing to ever happen to Everton FC. I believe he gets things right far more times than he gets them wrong.I believe that he is ONE of the best things to happen to Everton FC in recent years. Basically we have qualified for the UEFA Cup for the last 2 seasons - how far away did that seem back in 2002 ?

In those days we were more used to being in the bottom half of the table than the top half.It was nearly as bad as 1971-1973 when we had the likes of Rod Belfitt and Bernie Wright in the squad !! It wasn’t just CSE’s and O Levels that I found a pain in those days !!!!!

Oh by the way Richard my surname is Brien and not O’Brien - but that’s a common mistake and as I am proud of my Irish roots and you have the same name as a great Irish actor I don’t really mind.
John Lloyd
13   Posted 26/06/2008 at 12:33:18

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Lads I think some of the points you are making in disagreeing with Christine is actually backing up her point, especially the initial one from Richard Harris where you say that loss of form was the reason ("The real reason was that we didn?t play well enough and compete when it mattered.")
Is the main reason for that the size of hte squad compared to the RS, Man U, Chelsea etc?
In games when they could rotate players we couldnt & when are top players were out injured or away with ANC we didnt have any quality in depth to replace them???

There in proving Christines point of "the REAL reason we didn?t overhaul Liverpool and claim 4th spot was a direct cause that can be attributed to a lack of comparative finances".

Our squad was too small with not enough quality in depth & what do you need to buy players with quality???? Money!!

Some of you are so quick to disagree that you dont even read what has been written properly, either that or you dont understand it??
EJ Ruane
14   Posted 26/06/2008 at 18:43:28

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Richard Harris.

You ask (me?)...

"So using a similar money argument, how did Oldham beat us at home ? Or did their available squad cost more than ours ?"

Well, you’ll see (IF YOU READ IT) that I used the phrase "they?ll almost certainly win" rather than the more definite "they’ll absolutely fucking DEFFO win!!".

There’s a difference.

However, just for you, I’ll be specific.

Do I think we can beat a top four side?

Yes.

On a regular enough basis for it to make any real difference?

No

(I also stated It was a generalisation)

Hope that answers your questions.

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