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Moyes still riding his luck

Comments (38)

You would think that on the back of a good run the team would now be playing good crisp football against average teams, especially when they are down to 10 men. But it doesn't happen (one really good performance in our run of 9 unbeaten games and that was against a very poor Sunderland side) because Moyes doesn't seem to know how to use his players. And the team still looks too disjointed.

Last night changes had to be made to the defence because of injuries so to avoid too much disruption and loss of team understanding etc. it would have been best not to make any more changes. But Moyes doesn't seem to realise this. If we had been beaten last night (and we could have been) we would have been in a bit of trouble qualifying now.

Partnering Johnson with McFadden was probably the last thing I would have done last night.

They are too light weight to play together. But having decided to play them it was a must that Arteta, Graveson or at the very least Osman was played in the centre of midfield to provide those defence splitting passes for McFadden and especially Johnson to run on to. But Moyes doesn't seem to realise this.

The goal scoring Cahill may provide energy and bite to the midfield but he hardly controls a game with his passing. Arteta provides a touch of class when playing wide but he really is wasted there. And if Gravesen is unfit he shouldn't be on the bench. If he is fit he should be getting games.

We really need the manager to push the team on now by doing the right things but I have no confidence in him doing that and I won't be surprised if the wheels start to fall off ? again. The results say I'm wrong but the performances don't.
Ged Dwyer, Liverpool     Posted 06/12/2007 at 19:15:11

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Lyndon Lloyd
I've had my gripes about David Moyes in the past but I think you're being excessively harsh here, Ged. I'm not sure which game you and my esteemed colleague, Michael, were watching last night but I was, on the whole, mightily encouraged by the kind of football we tried to play and the patience employed in trying to break down a highly disciplined team, one which I wouldn't regard as mediocre at all.

Granted, not everything they tried came off, they weren't consistent in their level of passing, and, yes, we still need that top-class central midfielder (it's not Cahill's role to control a game with passing even though hewas no slouch with the ball last night), but having been almost convinced that Moyes had take us as far as he could after the Tottenham debacle earlier this year I'm now pretty happy with the way things are progressing on the pitch ? while still being mindful that we've been through awful spells under the current manager and could yet again.

David Barks
1   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:02:19

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Thank you Lyndon, very well said. The football last night wasn’t the greatest we have played but it was not the hoofball game that some have suggested, nor were we ever in danger of losing that match. Cahill did pretty well in that role I thought, but I think he would have flourished even more with the likes of Yakubu and Vaughan up front holding up play. As for Zenit, they were no mediocre side. They are the champions of Russia, a league that has greatly improved recently, and they are guaranteed a place in the Champions League next year because of that.
James Elliott
2   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:14:15

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Way to harsh. Since Pienaar has arrived we have been playing much better football. We may not be playing the perfect game but we’re much improved. Why is it most Everton fans always want to put our boys down?
Rob Hollis
3   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:27:57

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As we now go to games expecting to see some decent football and expecting to see some goals then something must have ’pushed on.’ I have had more than enough moans about Moyes but I am very encouraged this season.

McFadden and Johnson just did not work but it is interesting that you could sense that the Manager was fairly cool about when he would make he changes to win the game. We go about things like we expect to win at the moment. It does not mean we always will but it is great to see.
Dominic Fitzpatrick
4   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:22:17

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Totally agree Lyndon. I think people sometimes forget that european football requires more graft and patience than the Premiership.

People were actually getting frustrated when we tried to pass the ball around, flank to flank, in an attempt to break down what was a very organised defence.

Mark Pendleton
5   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:24:04

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I’m sort of with Lyndon on this one. Last night we were up against a very very good team. If anything i think the sending off hindered us as after they started to try and play keep ball and hit us on the break. It was very much a nearly match as Baines especially put in some excellent crosses we were inches away from converting. But, all said and done, we coped with the pressure and on another day could have scored a few, This club IS going the right way.
Keith Glazzard
6   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:24:38

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I think when Moyes said that Zenit would be tough he knew what he was talking about. They were big, strong and mobile as well as skilled and well organised. But we could have been 3 up at half time - we weren’t, and still won the game. We kept playing football, and it worked.

Any journalist who wants to put us down will reach for the phrase "against ten men", but it is meaningless. There is no evidence to show that this is a real disadvatage because the penalised team adjusts - like Zenit did - and can still defend and, importantly, attack. They made their best chances with ten men, because they were good enough, not because we were no good.

I think Moyes deserves the credit . When you think about it, Advocaat did Davey (and us) the honour of trying his mind games. And he lost.
Scott Robinson
7   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:57:44

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Why do people continue to feel motivated to write such dross? Fair enough you?re entitled to your say, but based on your views, Cahill wouldnt get a game! Goals win football matches and without him, we suffer.

While I didnt get to see the game, I undertand we had an average game. Shit happens over a long season and with European matches thrown in, its bound to happen. At least we are competing in Europe. and the manager is trying different things with the squad he?s got: Mcfadden and Johnson didnt work; well good on him for changing it. I remember Chelsea a couple of years ago werent pretty but they were winning games.. and that what makes a good team.

So, let?s get behind the team, change the attitude and look for the positives in the way things are. Is the glass half empty or half full right now??
Stefan Tosev
8   Posted 07/12/2007 at 00:55:17

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I am amused how ignorant some of Evertonians are, two moths ago Olympic Marseille were branded European no marks and now Zenit are an "average" side.

I dont know based on what is this perception, maybe England qualified for EURO 2008 instead of Russia, maybe Everton is every season in Europe, playing CL football, or maybe its just the need to moan about something.

I know for some people its hard to swallow that Everton are doing good in Europe and that Moyes is proving his critics wrong but this is ridiculous. We are on good run currently,playing some decent stuff and yet I have the feeling that there are people just waiting for the next loss or draw to start calling for Moyes head.

Chill out people be realistic,we are the second best scoring team in PL, doing fine in Europe, in the quarter-finals of Carling Cup even T. Marsh is quiet for now and with reason, I just can imagine what will happen next time when we draw never mind lose,"he has taken us as far as he can", "he found his level"(B.Noble)etc

Last night was a decent performance, we created a some good chances,put them under pressure and eventually it paid off.

I am all for a good critic if Moyes messes things up but when he is doing something good lets give him credit for once
Martin Cutler
9   Posted 07/12/2007 at 01:43:30

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I for one was very pleased with last nights performance!
First of all we won and we will definitely finish 1st thereby (hopefully) making the draw for the next round a little bit easier (no harm in that).
Second, Moyes himself (and a host of others...including the Russian poster from a few weeks back....gone quiet has he now?) all said Zenit would be the toughest...they indeed were and were extremely unlucky to lose the player to the red card (crap ref!)....I almost think Arteta missed deliberately out of sympathy!
McFadden and Johnson did not look a good partnership and we created chances without putting them away BUT Moyes made changes, we kept up the pressure, we kept creating chances right to the end, defensively we were pretty solid.........everything is an improvement, everything (on the field!) is getting better.
I also like the fact that Moyes comes across so much better to the public/media.......none of this crap that the other coach (aptly named!) came out with!
Overall, given they had ten men it was a fair result........we deserved it for sure.
Can’t wait for the draw for the next round (when is it??)
Kevin Campbell
10   Posted 07/12/2007 at 03:42:49

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I really didn?t see anything wrong with last nights line up. Moyes is the manager, let him manage. It amazes me how some "smart ass" like Ged thinks "Moyes doesn?t seem to know how to use his players. And the team still looks too disjointed."

This is one of the most idiotic statements I have ever heard. Even before the match was played, when we were playing Portsmouth last weekend, I was guessing Moyes would field McFadden and Johnson and rest Yakubu.

We have everybody back. We have so many matches. We have so many options. We are spoilt for choice at the moment and everybody that we have are "equal" in my books.

Anyway... why dont we just enjoy the team that we have at the moment and enjoy the results we are achieving. For goodness sake - it?s so hard to please SOME people.
Peter Bourke
11   Posted 07/12/2007 at 04:38:22

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It seems breathtaking that there are still coach critics even during such a purple patch of form. I suppose for some people Moyes will never make the correct decisions. It was wise in my opinion to rest Yak,Osman and co. Next week Cahill and others may get a rest.
Tony Mac
12   Posted 07/12/2007 at 08:39:03

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Some comments on this board makes we wonder, do some people actually have any knowledge of the game and judging by this post I think I might be right. Did you happen to watch the silky skills of Spurs last night? You see I remember certain managers who played all that silky sexy attacking football (Adilies & Keegan) but they forgot to tell the team how to defend. Go back to your Playstation and if it's one-sided football you want, you can turn the opposion off and you can pass the ball until your heart is content without worrying about how decent the other side might just be.
Stephen Davies
13   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:15:39

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Gravesen?s legs have gone, I have been told...
Paul Lenehan
14   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:32:41

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Absolute rubbish. For starters Zenit are not an average team they are a very good footballing team with more money and more European experience than us.

Secondly you can?t play the same 11 all the time. Being just as point away from qualification Moyes was right to make changes. We have a huge number of games coming up and it is not only important to rest players but its also important to give fringe players games so when they are called upon they are properly conditioned and ready.

Finally I thought we played some decent stuff on wednesday and am optimistic about the coming games.
David Torley
15   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:33:46

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David Moyes your mission is to get Everton Football Club playing like Brazil in the 1970 World Cup Final, twice a week, in all competitions whilst spending fourpence ha’penny on players.

Bill Kenwright, your mission is to rebuild Goodison Park to a 90 000 capacity stadium with gold plated seats over the course of one summer. The money for this needs to come from an ’investor’ (come on Bill there’s fuckin’ loads of them out there) and should be ringfenced from the fourpence ha’penny Moyes needs for players.

Don’t you people know what Nil Satis Nisi Optimum means??
David Graves
16   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:32:01

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So Ged,
Only one good performance in 9 unbeaten games, Zenit (champions of Russia) are an average team, Cahill should be a play making midfielder, Arteta should also be playing in the middle of the park and Moyes is obviously out of his depth as a manager.
Either you’re a football-tactics genius who can see a lot of things most of us can’t - or you clearly don’t know your arse from your elbow.
Think that it might be the latter.
Mark Welsh
17   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:42:45

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Ged, I despair.

I wonder what it will take to stop some fans from whingeing about Moyes.

He is clearly the architect of this carefully built side that has reinstated my enjoyment of supporting this fine club. It has also reinstated my faith that football doesn’t have to be the domain of ’most money wins’.

I thought the team played a good passing game on Wednesday and we set about a decent Zenit with passion and determination.

I agree that McFadden squanders the ball despite his ability and Johnson is low on confidence, so I was hollering for Anichebe to come on. But Moyes played it right in the end I think.

Are we finally going to get behind our manager ????
Ed Casey
18   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:45:07

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Excessively harsh is the understatement of the year! Ged, what do you want - the team to play like Brazil every time we get on the pitch! Wake up! Moyes is doing an amazing job at the moment and the team is putting in the performances on the pitch to get us results. For the first time in years we’ve got a really good squad AND a bit of strength in depth that might help us through the upcoming period of heavy fixtures. I expect that the unbeaten run will come to an end during this period (we’ll be playing ManUre and Arse amongst others) but won’t be using that as an opportunity to start demanding that Moyes is sacked! Honestly, some people really don’t know when their bread is buttered!
Ed Casey
19   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:52:15

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p.s. I presume Gravesen is not getting a game because the manager thinks he’s rubbish!
Stephen Davies
20   Posted 07/12/2007 at 09:58:08

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Gravesen’s legs have gone Ed. Thats why he isn’t playing.
John Lloyd
21   Posted 07/12/2007 at 11:05:09

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Stephen Davies, what d?you mean his legs have gone?

I?m not having a go I?m genuinly interested. I myself thought Tommy would of been good to get on the other night, think it was made for him in the 2nd half!! I also know DM is not one for bluffing so dont understand why he would have him on bench if he was crocked. What do you know lad?
Stephen Davies
22   Posted 07/12/2007 at 11:14:56

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Heard it from Martin Waldron, 75% of Evertonians won?t know who he is but he works with the scouting and academy at the club so sees Grav train daily. According to him he?s not running properly and is tiring quick. Be suprised if he completes a full 90 now. Anyway we will see what condition he?s in against AZ as Moyes would, I presume want to see how he holds up in a competitive fixture.
Ed Casey
23   Posted 07/12/2007 at 11:55:02

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Legs gone = rubbish!
Sam Morrison
24   Posted 07/12/2007 at 11:56:40

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I think we?re playing much better football this season. I also think you have to say there?s been progress if we can be debating how we win and not why we don?t. What I don?t think you can say is that 9 games unbeaten is down to luck.

I?ve read a lot of good stuff on this site, but there are some occasional clunkers too, such as "I didn?t like the way Moyes celebrated a goal" to name a personal favourite. This has to go in that category.

Chris Keightley
25   Posted 07/12/2007 at 10:53:53

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Ged you obviously would have prefered if we had lost our last nine games 5-4 having demonstrated free flowing attacking football ,i was happier with no loss in nine, in fact Mc Doughnut most supporters would take a nine game unbeaten run regardless of performance ,so should you !! your comments would grace tranmeres websites, roll on saturday when we edge pass fulham 2-1 and go ten games unbeaten !!!
Paul Avery
26   Posted 07/12/2007 at 12:06:05

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9 games unbeaten, going strong in the league, quarter final in the league cup and 3 wins out of 3 in europe and your still moaning??? Whats that all about? Moyes has transformed our club never mind our team. I think the football being played at times is as good as its been for about 20 years, the squad is young, and is only going to get better and better. Moyes is resting players at the right time, give the man a break. Id hate to think what you?d be like if we had?nt won for 9 games! Get a grip!
Stephen Davies
27   Posted 07/12/2007 at 12:04:25

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How is it rubbish Ed? thats why I don?t normally post on here. Most people don?t trust what they read. I thought I would start posting on here because it appears the users are more perspicacious than on some of the forums. Why is it so hard to postulate that someone would want to give out useful information. What would I gain from lying about it. Christ.
Chris Masey
28   Posted 07/12/2007 at 13:18:05

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One really good performance in our run of 9 games unbeaten! Oh, I’m sorry a point at Stamford Bridge where a team hasn’t lost for near enough three seasons, isn’t a good performance?? You need to go to the doctors and get some anti-depressants Ged. You make Tony Marsh sound positive. I’ve been accused of negativety, but we really are sinking to new depths now.
Paul McGrath
29   Posted 07/12/2007 at 13:28:36

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Where have Tommy Grav's legs gone?
Neil McKinney
30   Posted 07/12/2007 at 13:27:12

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20 odd posts and not one person agrees with you Ged. Nuff said!

On yer own... On yer own... On yer own, on yer own, nah nah!

Dave Griffin
31   Posted 07/12/2007 at 13:44:01

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Tommy’s legs are still there. I saw them on Wednesday night, and they were both still attached.
Ed Casey
32   Posted 07/12/2007 at 14:31:54

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Hey Stephen - calm down! And why exactly should we all trust what we read - it is an individuals prerogative to be cynical and I suggest it is not healthy to believe everything you are spoon fed nor is it healthy to have such a high regard for your own opinion that you have a seisure because someone has passed a flippant remark about it. For your information, I visit this site, read the posts and make comments for two reasons - 1 because I am passionate about Everton and 2 for fun!
I’m sure your opinion is expert and your source is sound, I wasn’t calling your integrity into question and neither was I calling you a liar but what I am now saying is that you need to lighten up. To return to the original point is it not reasonable to suggest that if Gravesen’s ’legs have gone’ (whatever that means) then that would mean that he is not up to a standard that would make David Moyes consider putting him on the pitch in a competitive game of football? I apologise for ther flippancy of my comment and the anguish that it has caused you but stand by my original comment - Gravesen is not getting a game because at present he is not good enough!
Ged Dwyer
33   Posted 07/12/2007 at 17:14:14

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Lyndon apart, it’s funny how almost no one addressed the points I made. McFadden & Johnson are too lightweight to play together when there are better options. Apparently Moyes agreed with me when he made the changes but he should have known in the first place. There was no one in the centre mid to play the through balls for McFadden or Johnson.

James - I never criticised the players. In fact the players deserve a lot of credit this season but if Moyes showed more nouse we could push on even more.

Rob - You said it. McFadden and Johnson together didn’t work.

Mark - If you’re a passing team playing ten men doesn’t hinder you it helps.

Scott - Where the hell did I say Cahill shouldn’t play. Calling him ’The goal scoring Cahill’ with energy and bite made it clear how I value him. If you can’t understand what I’m saying no wonder you disagree. And the fact that you didn’t see the game. I went the game and got behind the team. You didn’t.

Stefan - I’m certainly not ignorant. I’ve seen what Zenit did with the other average teams in the UEFA cup.

Kevin - I think it’s you who wants to be the ’smart ass’. Don’t get personal mate it lets you down. Pity Moyes didn’t try Johnson with Vaughan or Johnson with Anichebe at the start with someone in centre mid who could lay on a few neat through balls. It might have done Johnsons confidence the world of good to get a chance and score.

David - I didn’t say Cahill needs to be a playmaker but he needs someone like that playing with him. It’s all about balance. That’s my point.

Neil McKinney - It goes with the territory. When we are winning everyone who writes in is for Moyes. When we’re losing it’s the opposite. But you really need to grow up lad.

Please take on the points made and don’t miss the point. If Moyes showed more nouse we could push on even more.
Keith Glazzard
34   Posted 07/12/2007 at 19:26:53

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Ged - now you’re wrong.

Not for posting your view up there at the start. It stimulated a lot of thought - a good thing. None of us can be right or wrong, and in constructive argument we respect what we hear, even change our minds.

You are outvoted mate. Never whinge.
Art Greeth
35   Posted 07/12/2007 at 21:43:46

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You know Ged, I like contrarians. They tend to be insightful, inspirational types because they have the courage to go against the flow of the mainstream. Your opening and end posts, however, are neither insightful nor inspirational. They are more contradictory than contrarian.
The fact that the team has gone on a run of 9 unbeaten games, home and away, playing twice a week across three competitions, thus progressing to the quarter finals of the league cup and the last 32 of the UEFA cup whilst maintaining a healthy league position rather belies your observation that ?Moyes doesn’t seem to know how to use his players. And the team still looks too disjointed?. I have been mightily impressed how Moyes, now he has genuine selection choices to make, is picking and mixing his sides and sending his team out with a different game plan depending on the opposition.
The changes you criticise for the Zenit game were perfectly justified, the team did not experience a collective amnesia on how to play together as you imply and at no stage did we look like getting beaten as you again imply. And rather than be in a ?bit of trouble qualifying?, we HAVE qualified, top of the group, with a game to play.
As for your opinions on individual players and how they work as a collective, that?s all it is Ged ? an opinion, but not a very insightful one in my eyes. A MUST to have Arteta, Graveson or Osman playing in the centre of midfield?? Why? Graveson hasn?t clocked up a full 90 minutes since his return? Pienaar does as good a job as Osman in there and Mikel has hardly been wasted (as you state) playing wide in the last two seasons, during which time he has walked away with the Player of the Season trophy each year.
No confidence in Moyes pushing the team on?? Then I and tens of thousands of Blues must be living in a parallel universe to you own, because you seemingly fail to notice that we are still involved in all competitions and have the opportunity to go even further.
No Ged? not only the results say you?re wrong. The performances do as well.
Ged Dwyer
36   Posted 08/12/2007 at 00:18:30

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Keith Glazzard - No whinging from me I just try to give an honest opinion because I care about Everton. You on the other hand think getting personal wins an argument. Wrong.
Keith Glazzard
37   Posted 08/12/2007 at 14:39:33

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Ged - nobody wins the argument; I was only doing the body count. And if a bit of friendly advice counts as "getting personal", ah well, there you are.

On to Fulham today - if teams suffer ’European hangovers’ we’re in danger of one today with this stage of the mission accomplished. But I can’t see Moyes allowing it.
Ged Dwyer
38   Posted 08/12/2007 at 21:16:10

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Keith - European hangovers are when you play away and have to travel. Great second half today, some nice football too. But Moyes showed his failings again. Baines injured and had to go off. Quite simple. Lescott left back(so comfortable there) Jags centre of defence (had just played there and needs the practice for when Yobo is missing). But no Moyes decides Jags right back and switches Neville to left back. It took Moyes ten minutes to realise he got it wrong but I applaud him for then changing it. But my point is ’just a little bit more nouse’ and who knows what we could do’ !

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