And yet the Everton scouts and Academy ? predominantly during the 1980s ? seems to have overlooked, ignored or missed out on approximately £50-80 million pounds worth of home grown talent in the shape of Carragher, Michael Owen, Steven Gerrard and Robbie Fowler ? all of whom subsequently signed for and prospered with the dark side ?
I therefore pose the question: How did this calamity happen? In the case of Michael Owen, for example, as a young boy playing in school and Sunday Leagues he set a remarkable goal-scoring record that was well documented in the Merseyside local press ? The Liverpool Echo and Daily Post ? so how did we miss out on this kid? Why when he was a dedicated Everton supporter was he overlooked and allowed to sign for Liverpool ? particularly as during the 1980s Everton had almost as much success as Liverpool and therefore as a football club had equal appeal for young apprentices?
It could perhaps be excused as an oversight if it happened once ? but 4 times ????!!! All of these players mentioned went on to prove their credentials as England internationals, so before Evertonians shoot me down in flames ? just put your prejudice aside for one moment and forget about their current history of playing in red. Now, close your eyes and imagine that these guys had never ever played for Liverpool and were all nurtured by the Everton Academy ? just imagine how the fortunes of our club might have been affected in a positive way if all of the aforementioned players had been signed by Everton ?
I appreciate that some of you might retort with ?On Yeah ? what if... blah, blah, blah? but my point is that, surely at the zenith of their success in the mid-1980s was the time that Everton could afford to invest in the future by pouring money into the kids at the academy, and by capturing outstanding young talent ? particularly when most was sat in the boys pen every other Saturday afternoon!
Surely our scouting team from that period must now be shaking their heads in disbelief at the ones that got away and were welcomed with open arms by the dark side? Thankfully we now seem have got our act together with the academy and the future seems a lot brighter? but it was a bitter lesson to learn having boyhood Evertonians scoring against us when it should perhaps have been the other way around?
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1 Posted 07/09/2008 at 14:49:35
And didn’t Ian Rush support the blues too?
2 Posted 07/09/2008 at 15:51:27
But on the other hand, the RS missed Sheedy, Watson, Reid and surely many others.
Such a pointless question asking why!!
3 Posted 07/09/2008 at 15:54:17
Ian Rush said he was such a big blue he’d play for free. Gordon Lee said "You’ll never make it son". Nice one Gordon.
4 Posted 07/09/2008 at 15:50:24
5 Posted 07/09/2008 at 16:05:22
6 Posted 07/09/2008 at 16:11:28
7 Posted 07/09/2008 at 16:30:19
8 Posted 07/09/2008 at 17:36:43
Look at this;
9 Posted 07/09/2008 at 18:33:39
10 Posted 07/09/2008 at 19:20:23
Everton FC is not a billion pound industry with hundreds of scouting staff availiable or certainly not hundreds of experts. So at the end of the day some talents is destined to slip away.
I agree with Spidy (Peter Parker), we should look forward. It looks as theres talent beeing produced in the academy nowadays. Please stop all the whining. I think the word SUPPORTERS actually means we should SUPPORT the team, not keep on complainig all day long. Don?t you guys have something positive to write about?
11 Posted 07/09/2008 at 19:44:12
12 Posted 07/09/2008 at 20:56:36
13 Posted 07/09/2008 at 21:29:51
14 Posted 07/09/2008 at 22:52:16
15 Posted 07/09/2008 at 22:27:54
His name was Robbie Ryder at the time, and he signed for Liverpool as a schoolboy. Everton were in for him, but Colin Harvey only offered him a one year contract as a YTS - Liverpool offered him whatever he wanted, but he had been training with them anyway for a few years so we never really had a chance.
I think the difference now is that we have got the better players in our Academy since they have more chance of breaking through with us, and the parents know that. One advantage of not having any money!
As well as Jose there are some great kids coming through over the next 2- 5 years.
16 Posted 08/09/2008 at 10:15:03
He said, "Tony, Everton offered him buttons. Liverpool gave him a fantastic contract. I HAD NO CHOICE."
Therein lies the problem: MONEY.
17 Posted 08/09/2008 at 10:24:40
18 Posted 08/09/2008 at 10:58:13
19 Posted 08/09/2008 at 11:21:04
20 Posted 08/09/2008 at 11:34:47
21 Posted 08/09/2008 at 12:15:04
22 Posted 08/09/2008 at 12:27:54
Well that’s not QUITE the case....
There was an interview with Rush on the radio last week and of course he was asked why he didn’t go to Everton as he was such a big fan at the time. He said that the one week that Gordon Lee went to watch him (at Chester), he was played in midfield and had an absolute stinker, so there was no further interest.
Typical Everton timing/luck eh ?
23 Posted 08/09/2008 at 12:29:07
Yes we should all look to the future - but it is also important to REMEMBER the lessons of the past. I think the point Christopher was making was just that. Our academy is currently looking good and there are some good prospects. We need to ensure that some of the mistakes of the past aren?t repeated. We may not be able to match the "Sky 4" or has it just become "Sky 5 in finacial terms. But we can build up and establish a good scouting network and a good youth academy.
Ajax are a good role model in this, yes they are one of the big teams in Holland, but they are not in the same league in terms of finances as the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona and the aforementioned "Sky 4 or 5". But they have won more European titles than Man Utd for example - mainly due to having a brilliant youth set up. We should aim to do the same.
24 Posted 08/09/2008 at 13:27:12
In their wisdom our estemed acedemy believe you have to be a giant to proceed. I guess Jose bucks the trend for now!!!
25 Posted 08/09/2008 at 20:19:58
However i think we must have learned from the past as how many Liverpool youth players have progressed to their first team in recent years and been considered good enough to play game after game, when compared to our team which at the moment has at least 5 considered good enough to play. Seems to tides have changed.
26 Posted 08/09/2008 at 23:03:47
27 Posted 09/09/2008 at 00:25:18
However, I do know one thing. People are destined to make mistakes, history is full of people making mistakes. why don?t we learn from them? Because NO ONE IS PERFECT.
I do like reading old stories, old gossip. Just don?t like all the whining.
But then, it?s also very much human to complain and bitch around.
I rest my case.
28 Posted 09/09/2008 at 11:09:37
The future as far as our youth and Academy set-up is concerned looks extremely promising... indeed it could be said that Everton are currently bucking the trend compared to other premier league clubs perhaps with the exception of Arsenal and Manchester City concerning home grown youth investment rather than the just purchasing overseas youngsters as is the preference for some such as our neighbours...
However I do think that this has been partly done out of necessity due to lack of funds ? so we opted for the traditional option of nuturing young talent sourced locally and from other areas of the UK...
I acknowledge that mistakes have been made in our illustrious past and that thankfully we now seem to be learning from them ... for those who criticised arguing that there was little point in harping back, my point was and is, that it is only because of the mistakes made in our past, our acknowledgement of them and the lessons subsequently learned that we are now starting to nurture a steady flow of youngsters who may have the potential to succeed in the first team... and for a cash strapped club such as Everton this is the best way of adding numbers and talent to our squad in the short term...
29 Posted 09/09/2008 at 14:56:47
Anyone who claims to be true blue and then pulls a liverpool top on and claps the fuckin kopites when they sing his name is clearly a liar. I do get the point of your article but the real blues we have missed obviously went to play for someone other than the shite! Good riddance to all of those players mentioned. The only thing worse than a kopite is a kopite who said he was once a blue! We hate McMahon!!!!!!!!
I love a bit of vitriol!
30 Posted 10/09/2008 at 00:43:37
31 Posted 10/09/2008 at 10:00:44
Spain are at the forefront of this. Mainly due to their rule of a 25 man squad with another 5 academy players in case of injuries. Also they have a no non-EU player stipulation to protect their academies. Italy on the other hand believe mainly on home grown talent with the exception of a couple of teams. If you look at the Italian national team most of them if not all of them play in italy.
I guess my point is there is no point talking about the "ones that got away" or how poor our academies are, as it's to do with the managers and coaching staff trusting these youngsters.
The amount of money in the Premier League is far more than any other league so the pressure is greater
32 Posted 10/09/2008 at 12:29:12
33 Posted 10/09/2008 at 13:27:20
Then he changed his mind when Everton were sniffing around him.
34 Posted 10/09/2008 at 17:19:09
35 Posted 10/09/2008 at 17:20:21
36 Posted 10/09/2008 at 21:17:20