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The Mail Bag

Nuno Valente

Comments (14)

I'm not Nuno's biggest fan to be honest. I think he lacks pace and he's injury-prone. In the last few games though, other than a few mis-timed tackles in dangerous positions, he has been excellent in my opinion.

Baines is back fit again and overall is a far better option at left back but looking at our current form with Valente in the team do you think baines should have to wait to get back into the team or should he automatically replace Valente?

Looking at our next game against Portsmouth I have mixed feelings: Valente could be exposed by Portsmouth's pace but Baines could get outdone in the air. I feel as though at the moment that will be the only position Moyes isn't sure of for the next game.
Dave Trudgeon, runcorn     Posted 26/11/2007 at 11:19:21

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Dan McKie
1   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:23:04

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I think Nuno has played very well since he has come in and think it would be bad practice to drag him out while on form. Bring back Baines for Zenith I say and give Nuno the night off but I think Moyes will be unchanged if possible for Portsmouth next saturday and rightly so!
Michael Rodgers
2   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:27:43

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Valente has been excellant since he got back in the team and to drop him would be very harsh. We have great depth and I think if players know that if they play well they will keep their place then standards can only go up.
Colin Jones
3   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:29:32

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I do think as a rule that if someone plays well you should keep them in the side, it creates competition for places as noone is guaranteed a slot if they are returning from injury. The motivation is there that if you know you play well in the game you will stay in the side and get more games. There is something to be said for players getting unhappy being pushed out of the side, but weight that up against a player who plays well only to be dropped for another preferred over him, and then the player who comes in knowing that his place isn’t really under pressure potentially underperforming.

Ok! I think at the moment nuno and baines are at a similar level, that could change. One thing Moyes may think about in terms of selection is Valente’s European experience.
Connor Rohrer
4   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:29:14

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I’d stick with Nuno for Portsmouth and give Baines the Zenith game. You should be in the team on merit and Valente has been generally very good. He doesn’t have the pace anymore but his tackling over the past few weeks has been brilliant and no one can doubt his ability on the ball. He is naturally a talented lad who is composed on the ball and has a cultured left foot.

Baines is the future and I think he will take over from Nuno in a few games time but Nuno defo deserves a run for his consistency.

I wouldn’t get rid of him. As a second or third choice left back he’s brilliant and at 1.5 million he wasn’t exactly breaking the bank.
Stefan Tosev
5   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:27:50

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For me Valente is class whenever he is fit he is by mile our best left back. Baines has the incredients of very good full-back but he is nowhere near fit-Valente yet. The Portugal international may not be the fastest but his positioning sense, experience, game reading make him by far the best option. He rarely get caught out of position, his radar seems to be working very well, he simply knows when to attack and when to sit back and this comes with years of international experience.

Sadly he is 33 and injury-prone now but I think that we should keep him here for at least an year more to mentor young Baines and be used as a back up
Neil McKinney
6   Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:36:16

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I was one of Valente’s harshest critics when he first came. No steel, energy or passion. However, I think he is relishing the fact that there are a few more footballers in the side now and he doesn’t just have to kick into the channels.

Let’s face it, he’s Portuguese, so he was always going to be better going forward than he was a defender. Our previous style of play and personnel did not really encourage overlapping fullbacks, but times are changing and I think Nuno likes it.

I’m really pleased that so many players are hitting form, the morecompetition for places the more likely we are to progress in all the different competitions.

Well done Nuno, Osman and Carsley for reminding us that we have quality right through the side and aren’t completely reliant on the new purchases. I’m not going to start a debate about the transfer window just yet, but I’m really excited about what a couple of key buys might do for our club.

COYB!!
Keith Glazzard
7   Posted 26/11/2007 at 15:05:06

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What a great discussion to be having!

I always hoped Nuno Valente would come good, because he is a classy player. Baines has all the makings, and injuries permitting, will be a great player. Moyes seems to be getting much better at juggling his squad and picking the right team (and subs) for the occassion, so let’s see how he handles this ’problem’.

One factor in all of this is how quickly Steve Pienaar has fitted in and added so much to our play in front of the left back. His goal was probably my pick of the 7 - we’ll miss him during the Africa Cup.

ps. NV is Jorge Nuno Valente, I think. So he’s a George - what do his mates call him?
Lue Glover
8   Posted 26/11/2007 at 18:09:00

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I checked out the stats in the Telegraph online section last night (sad but true) and Valente has the best ratio of ’good’ passes in our team. yes, better than Mikel, better than Pienaar. Him and Stevie P seem to have gelled very well and ’their’ goal on Saturday was a gem. Nuno’s best years are no doubt behind him but like they say, ’the first ten yards is in your head’. Since he’s had a run in the first team he has shown what a good player he still is and his european experience has been invaluable.
Baines is indeed the future but I still see a role for Nuno for a good few months if he can avoid injury.
One of his very best games was against Newcastle at home last season but he was the complete package on Saturday.
I sit very close to the edge of the pitch in the GS and he had the biggest grin in Goodison each time we scored. He loves the club and is very well thought of behind the scenes. Keep it up Nuno!
And now I’m going to destroy every shred of my credibility (if there is any) by saying that he also has gorgeous legs...................but that doesnt influence me.....really.


Jeremy Benson
9   Posted 26/11/2007 at 18:35:08

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Nuno is much maligned. I don’t understand why - he is very definitely the most attack-minded full back we have, and for years. In fact, I’d say he could do a job as a left-sided midfielder. He is ALWAYS on the overlap; he gets forward, he causes problems.

When fit, he should be the number one left back choice, IMHO.
Mike Dayton
10   Posted 26/11/2007 at 19:48:37

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Nuno Valente is on the same page with our midfielders and is a great attacking option when overlapping. He has a attacking up the field mentality. His main problem is his defensive capabilities and pace coming back to defend. I’m a big fan of Baines but at the moment Nuno has been having a rebirth enjoying the time in the squad. It just goes to show the depth we have acquired and how everyone brings something to the table. He was exceptional this weekend. He stays in the lineup until he merits a demotion.
Rob Hollis
11   Posted 26/11/2007 at 22:46:14

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It will be a hard game so keep what is working and have your plan B on the bench.

There you go, I am in the wrong job!
Brian Garside
12   Posted 27/11/2007 at 00:35:47

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Have never understood why people have a go at him.
A quality player who reads the game and plays with his brain.
Something we are not very used to anymore.
Ajay Gopal
13   Posted 27/11/2007 at 16:31:14

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I had always rated Nuno very highly, since I saw him play for Portugal in the World Cup. I always remember him up there near the opponent?s box.

Play them both, I say (Valente & Baines) ! Use Baines as a left winger & Valente as the left back (or the other way round, if you please). Pienaar then gets to play more central mid-field in place of Osman (even though that is a bit hard on the lad, given his current form).
Olga Galakhova
14   Posted 24/12/2007 at 12:35:48

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I think that it’s the greatest injustice that sometimes Nuno Valente is among substitutes! It’s a great mistake of the coaches - both Everton and National teams. I know that the most girls like Nuno Valente, first of all, for his nice face. However, I assure you that I consider him one of the best football - players in the world independently of his appearance.

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