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The Team of the 80s

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I have only been a supporter of Everton since 1988, so I missed out on the glory days of the mid 80s. I was just wondering about the great team we had back then. Apart from Lineker, I think, did we ever buy any big name signings? Did any players come with good reputations, or was the team built from 'no-name' players. Just curious that's all.
Trevor Thompson, Croydon     Posted 03/02/2008 at 15:02:49

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Michael Hunt
1   Posted 03/02/2008 at 18:04:56

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Lineker as our by far most expensive signing at the time at £800k demonstrates the huge increase in money in the game. Other than Links, there were no expensive buys until towards the end of our purple period of mid-eighties. Some buys were established top players, but percieved to be crocked e.g. Reidy and Gray. Howie should be made a Knight of the Realm!
Kieran Kinsella
2   Posted 03/02/2008 at 18:12:55

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When we won the championship in 1987 most of our best players were injured for much of the season so we won i with major contributions from unknown and long forgotten nobodies like Warren Aspinall, Kevin Langley, Bobby Mimms, Wayne Clarke, Stuart Rimmer etc. There is no way those guyes would be paid to play in the prem these days so my point is whilst we didn’t pay big money for stars back then....neither did most other teams. The game is very different today.
Chris Dottie
3   Posted 03/02/2008 at 19:10:20

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Although it is a very interesting point because although big money transfers were a lot less common, as Kieran points out, I can also remember THE 1985 team being described on Football Focus etc as the team without any stars. By the end of that season all the starting XI were internationals apart from Degsy but it was certainly a talking point at the time. The only established names were supposed to be crocks, although Inchy was a record buy and Brace had a growing reputation.

With the exception of Lineker I don’t think that really changed until Colin Harvey got a bit excited and wedged out on Cottee, McCall, McDonald and Nevin.
Tony Horne
4   Posted 03/02/2008 at 19:20:27

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All the big name signings went to Man Utd, Arsenal & Liverpool even in those days. Gary Birtles, Alan Brazil, Charlie Nicholas and John Wark we missed out on. The good players Kendall bought were young and untried and from lower divisions or reserve teams - Heath, Steven, Mountfield, Sheedy, Southall, Bracewell etc. Even Lineker was a bit of a punt. (it has to be said though he also bought a load of dross particularly early on).

There was not much televised football in those days so it was only by going to the games that you knew how good that side became. There were times when you wondered whether the opposition would touch the ball ever again.........
Trevor Thompson
5   Posted 03/02/2008 at 19:48:24

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Amazing! Not going to dwell on the past too much, we all know what happened, but interesting to know that the team was mostly made up of untried and tested players. I know the game as changed so much that it is very unlikey that a team can win the league without spending big; although the Reds are showing that money isn’t everything.
Karl Masters
6   Posted 03/02/2008 at 21:00:25

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You could actually make a point that Moyesie is recreating history to a point by bringing in players who were either only :
  • reserves at big clubs ( for Neville & Howard you could say Harper & Sheedy ),
  • playing for smaller clubs in the top flight ( Baines = Van den Hauwe, Carsley = Bracewell for example ),
  • the odd big money buy ( Yakubu = Heath ),
  • supposed failures or players where their careers had dipped re-igniting their careers at EFC ( Arteta = Reid, Johnson =Gray )
  • lower division players getting their chance in the top flight ( Cahill = Steven, Lescott = Mountfield, Jagielka =Southall )
  • and youngsters brought through the ranks ( Hibbert, Vaughan, Anichebe and Osman = Ratcliffe, Stevens, Sharp & Richardson )
What has changed is the amount of foreigners now in the game. However, one thing links the the two squads from the past and present and that is ahunger to succeed and a strong team ethic. That 80s team was full of players with something to prove. I see a similar situation at Goodison now. If Moyes can only find a decent Chinese restaurant, we could be on the verge of something great!! :)
Roy Coyne
7   Posted 03/02/2008 at 22:04:52

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Those where the days memories are flooding back,will never happen in the greedy grubby prem, agents would be tapping up the players even the boss. If the Sheedy - Keown fight happened now it would be on pay-per-view Sky Sports channel.
Sean Condon
8   Posted 03/02/2008 at 21:58:56

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Chris Dottie is right. I still have Echo clippings my grandad sent us from ?84-?85 with banner headlines attesting to the form of Kendall?s "team of no stars".
I have also recognized some of the above similarities in the manner in which Howard and Moyes have built their teams.
One thing that was really frustrating with Kendall?s sides was that they were forever missing players with injuries. Now, everyone loses players to injury, and obviously modern training methods shame what was the norm even 20 years ago, but besides the long term jobs (Heath, Reid, Neville in the ?86run-in, Bracewell) it seemed we were always losing men to ?niggling injuries? back then. Did Howard run training sessions at the pub?
The post that mentions all the ?nobodies? who helped us win the title in ?86-?87 reminds me, however, of just how bloody good we were in those three years. Still, we really should?ve won more.
I wonder what three titles in a row would?ve meant to the club at the onset of the big money. Surely our prestige throughout the world of football would?ve risen dramatically. I?ve always had a suspicion, and I can?t back it up with evidence, but maybe not winning in ?85-?86 was more damaging to us long term than not being allowed to stroll to the European Cup in the same campaign. Twenty-two years later I still can?t forget that Bobby MacDonald goal. Worst day of my life.
Brian Denton
9   Posted 03/02/2008 at 23:31:03

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There was one star who was in demand from a number of clubs (including Liverpool), and chose us. His name was Ian Snodin, and if not for some horrendous injuries would have been one of the greats.
Peter Bradshaw
10   Posted 04/02/2008 at 01:48:04

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Hey Karl

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