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Getting Scary...

By Dick Anderson :  18/12/2009 :  Comments (46) :
We all keep waiting for this bad form to end and recent results against Spurs and Chelsea suggest a small improvement but it's nearly Christmas and we are just one point away from the relegation zone.

And what's in store over the next couple of months? Well its scary reading.

Birmingham (H) The next game is Birmingham at home. Normally a game we would look to win but they have just won five games on the trot, they are currently 7th in the Premier League and in the form of their history. This is not going to be easy and could easily result in a draw.

Sunderland (a) A Boxing Day fixture against Sunderland who are very hard to beat at their place. They have beaten 5 teams at home including Arsenal and Liverpool. Sunderland suck away but at home this will be very difficult for Everton to get anything.

Burnley (h) Last game of the year should be a banker. Surely Everton can get 3 points here. We haven't won at home since September but this is a must win fixture.

Carlise (h) Should be straight forward enough but a win wont help us in the Premier League.

Arsenal (a) First Prem game of 2010 is very tough. Hard to imagine Everton getting anything here.

Man City (h) First home game of 2010 is against big spending Man City (who knows who they'll buy in January). Lescott is injured but they have a squad of superstars. Not going to be easy. They are beatable but a draw could be favourite here.

Sunderland (h) Sunderland are bad travellers and we should win this one.

Wigan (a) This could be tricky depending on what kind of form Everton are in.

Liverpool (a) Let's be honest no we have no chance of getting anything.

Chelsea (h) Moyes has never beaten Chelsea and it's hard to imagine that changing.

Man Utd (h) Let's be honest they always beat us and probably will again.

Spurs (a) Let's be honest, Spurs are flying high in the Premier League and if we lose to Liverpool, Chelsea and Man Utd then our form will be shit for this away fixture.

After that we go into March. I can see us getting 3 home wins and maybe a couple of points from draws. I can't see us getting anything from February which also now includes Sporting Lisbon both home and away.

We currently stand at 1 win in 15 games and unless we get a few shock results I can see us sitting around the relegation zone come March.

Things are getting very scary.

Reader Comments

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Dave Wilson
1   Posted 18/12/2009 at 16:40:16

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Hide behind the couch when Dr Who is on do you Dick ?
Gareth Hughes
2   Posted 18/12/2009 at 17:15:12

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Dick, you are a joke and we don’t need fans like you quite frankly. If the fans show your attitiude we will be stuffed. Get lost.
Gareth Humphreys
3   Posted 18/12/2009 at 17:15:36

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Cheer up matey, its Christmas, we are playing as well now as we have all season and some players are strarting to come back to form and fitness.
Bob Turner
4   Posted 18/12/2009 at 17:24:46

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"We currently stand at 1 win in 15 games"

Erm, how do you figure this one out? West Ham (a) and AEK Athens (a).... I seem to recall scoring more goals than they did in these games....
Brian Waring
5   Posted 18/12/2009 at 17:57:59

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You are a nob Gareth. Dick is just giving his, errr, you know, what is it now? Ahh, thats it, his fucking opinion!!!
Instead of having a dig at him, why not just give your opinion on his post.

And my opinion, he probalby won’t be far off.
Brian Waring
6   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:05:30

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By the way, I meant Gareth Hughes.
Mike Gwyer
7   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:24:23

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Dick. Please.

For one your predictions are to far ahead so calm down, and secondly, take a look and what the results of the next five will really be:

Birmingham at home. Their five wins were against shite teams and anyway, if they weren’t shite teams then Brum were lucky to win. 3-1 or probably 3-0 to us.

Sunderland away. Two wins in nine for them. You may say it’s a tough game but we are good for a draw at least, but hey, we will probably win 1-0.

Burnley at home. Dick this is getting easy now. 2-0. A higher score if Moyes decides too play with two strikers.

Carlise at home. Whatever.

Arsenal away. We always lose, so what. Been a long time since I’ve gone to Gooner land and seen a win. Depends on when they score really, if we hold out till the 2nd half it could be interesting.

Citeeh at home. 2-0 to us. End of. They are bad - Robinho does not care and Hughes is going. At Goodison Park City have always had it tough, this will be no different.

Trevor Williams
8   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:32:12

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how many times do you have to say ’To be honest’ ?

Pointless post
Trevor Williams
9   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:32:41

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lets be honest even :)
Andy Crooks
10   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:31:16

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My God Dick you’ve really got the fear and unfortunately you’ve passed it on to me. I’m now starting to think that Sundays game is one of the most important in years. As a "glass half-empty" guy to begin with, I really don’t need stuff like like this.
Dick Anderson
11   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:45:42

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Sorry guys I dont intend to be a defeatest but it is very worrying. Especially February when I think we’ll be lucky to get a point.

Just look at it realistically:-

Birmingham (H) Win
Sunderland (a) Lose
Burnley (h) Win
Arsenal (a) Lose
Man City (h) Draw
Sunderland (h) Win
Wigan (a) Draw
Liverpool (a) Lose
Chelsea (h) Lose
Man Utd (h) Lose
Spurs (a) Lose

Thats just 11 points before March.

So going into April we would have just 28 points.

That my friends is clench your bum relelgation fight time.

I hope I’m wrong but at best I can only imagine turning one of the draws into a win and I can’t see more then a point coming from February at best.
Dick Anderson
12   Posted 18/12/2009 at 18:56:22

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Its so unfair. Birmingham have won 5 games on the trot, sitting pretty 7th in the Premiership and are in the form of their history.

Trust us to get them now.

Its a must win game really.
Joey Brown
13   Posted 18/12/2009 at 19:00:17

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Or we could win the next 3 on the trot...draw Arsenal Beat City, Sunderland and Wigan... and get draws or better in March. I mean honestly Dick you’d have had us losing to Chelsea and Tottenham and we drew both and could have won. Cheer up brother. Also I highly doubt relegation as I have seen our April and May schedule and as I recall all but one or two fixtures are are very winnable. COYB
John Martin
14   Posted 18/12/2009 at 19:20:50

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The next 3 games are vital, we need at least 7 preferably 9 points from them. Then our season will be set up for a top ten finish as the harder games such as City & Spurs are more winable with a confident team.We wont get anything v Arsenal(a) Liverpool(a), As for the person above rubbishing B’Hams achievments as "against shite opposition" that’ll be the same shite opposition we’ve failed against miserably so far. Wolves/Stoke/Burnley/Hull 2 points from those 12 available shows why B’Ham will come to Goodison full of confidence.
Alan Clarke
15   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:15:11

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Birmingham are shit as are Sunderland and Burnley. If we can’t get at least 7 points from these games we deserve to go down. We will have gained those 11 points by the end of Jan not March.

Also look at Birmingham’s next run of fixtures: Everton (A), Chelsea (H), Stoke (A), Man U (H). I’ll be surprised if they even get a point from them games.
kenny newton
16   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:15:59

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ok dick you have no faith whatsoever and your not a true evertonian. with all the injuries we have this season and all the other bullshit they have been through.Ithink david moyes has done agood joband i think hes the best manager we’ve had in a long time.if you look at the premiership no team i s really dominating .We can beat the birm,sund, burn,and the red shite they got lucky last time.We still have 21 more games to go and anything can happen so have some faith
Jay Harris
17   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:52:39

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The only thing that’s certain is that NOTHING is certain.

IMO there is no way we will get NIL POINTs from The Liverpool, Chelsea, United, Spurs games. With confidence coming back and the addition of a few more players I can see at least 4 points there plus 14 from the others that will put us on 36 before March is out with 11 league games to go.

Watch this space!!!
Brian Waring
18   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:53:38

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Yeah lads, we should beat Bum, Sunderland etc. Just like when we were beating those quality sides of Burnley, Fulham, Stoke, Wolves, Bolton and Hull. Now how many pts did we gain there? Oh yeah, it was 2pts from a possible 18.
Jay Harris
19   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:59:27

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Sorry correction to the maths 35 before the end of March.

keep watching this space!!!!
Dick Fearon
20   Posted 18/12/2009 at 21:48:47

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The last local pundit to gaze into a murky fixture crystal ball was Gavin Ramjekis and we all know how far out he was.

I bet you hoped that your dire almost completely wrong prognosis was forgotten eh’ Gav.
Howsabout reminding us what awful defeats you said were about to befall us?
As for the other Dicks gloomy forecast will be noted and and when the time comes this more optimistic Dick will take great pleasure in reminding him.

kenny newton
21   Posted 18/12/2009 at 22:17:23

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if we beat birm. this sunday convincingly i believe we can go on a run to win our next 4 or 5 games.c,mon you blues
Karl Masters
22   Posted 18/12/2009 at 22:32:24

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Dick, you are Pessimism Personified.
Pat Finegan
23   Posted 18/12/2009 at 22:44:18

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Whoa there, Dick. I think you’re getting way ahead of yourself. I appreciate what you are trying to do; showing that we have a tough road ahead of us. But you can’t look at each individual fixture and try to say how much of a chance we have to win. Keep in mind, things can change in a couple weeks. We just drew with Tottenham at home and drew with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. No one would have guessed that a month ago so what’s there to say that we won’t be in the best form in the league in a month. Maybe we’ll have Jags, Arteta, and Nev back, maybe they’ll all tear a few more ligaments. We don’t know. Take the Liverpool game for example. The RS is a gong show right now and they probably aren’t going to get any better. Who says we won’t be in the same form as last year with our injured players back? Overwhelmingly pessimistic post. You just can’t predict what’s going to happen in 3 months.
Andy Rannard
24   Posted 18/12/2009 at 23:49:38

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Dick...says it all really
Steve Jones
25   Posted 19/12/2009 at 00:02:48

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Another post that somehow believes that a team depleted by injuries should be able to perform the same as one that is intact and has been stable in formation and composition for months. I’d appreciate someone explaining that to me.

It seems to be ’fashionable’ amongst Evertonians to make out that our injury crisis is no excuse for poor performance. I can't understand how anyone who claims to know the first thing about football could make that statement?

The foundation of our defence last season was the centre pairing of Jagielka and Lescott. Moyes replaces Lescott with Distin, a defender who is no better or worse than Lescott, and brings in Heitinga and Neill for extra cover. Despite this the defence is always going to be weaker because we’ve lost one of the best defensive partnerships the Prem has seen.

Then, at the same time, we have Arteta out long term... plus his cover Osman and Pienaar. Then we get Bilyaletdinov out for 3 matches on a red. So what we have lost is effectively our ability to move the ball, creatively, through the centre plus, at the same time, our real options to move the ball out wide.

Lots of Evertonians have come up with the crap that we had x number of internationals in the side, so we should have been able to do better regardless. It's stupidity that beggars belief. If you don't have creative central midfielders on the pitch and only poor options on the wings, you are not going to get much service to your strikers.

Look at the way Villa play... everything goes down the wings and when their wingers are snuffed out they have nothing else in the locker. Look at how Stoke and Wolves took Spurs down a peg... two men on Lennon and without Modric to play through, they were neutered.

For us it's very, very simple to see that injuries alone are the reason for our current league position. Why is this simple to see?

Purely because the performances have improved since we have had Pienaar and Bilyaletdinov back available! We now have outlets going forward and the more we have that ability, and confidence, to attack the more we put the opposition on the back foot and the easier a time we give our still-scratch defence.

We need Arteta back to bring the creativity back into the middle of the park, with Pienaar and Bilyaletdinov we have a very good range of skills in the middle.

We need to stabilise a back 4 for more than a couple of games and get a real leader back in there. Whether that's Pip Neville, Jagielka or maybe Johnny Heitinga is irrelevant... but that will happen naturally when injuries allow.

We’ve come off the back of three0 good performances in the league. We have three winnable matches up to the Emirates and, if we can go to Chelsea and get a point, we can go to the Emirates and do the same — especially if Fabregas is still crocked early Jan. That's because, like any other team, Arsenal don't look as effective when they have injuries to key players!
Brendan O'Doherty
26   Posted 19/12/2009 at 00:32:07

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Stop brickin’ yerself Dick! 3 points against the Shite are well possible in February, and there’s no reason we can’t get at least a point at the Spuds depending on what mood they’re in. Together with progression against Sporting it could be a good February. Keep your chin up!
Nick Entwistle
27   Posted 19/12/2009 at 02:39:32

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This is the worst thread ever on TW.

The first team haven’t lost in three, so this article is out of date in terms of team bitching.
Half time at Hull has been a turning point for us, and we’re good to go for any opposition... well, Birmingham anyway.
Sean Allinson
28   Posted 19/12/2009 at 07:48:31

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Steve Jones. Exactly.
Gavin Ramejkis
29   Posted 19/12/2009 at 08:40:03

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Dick by name and nature again, the same bloke that posts about "his country" Australia. Stick to your armchair and as detached as you are, we got lucky in a lot of games. I admit the football was better but in none did we truly deserve to win. So your predictions then from your realistic view of actually seeing the games in person so many fucking miles away Dick?
Ray Robinson
30   Posted 19/12/2009 at 08:54:12

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Dick has expressed an opinion on a situation that has a reasonably high probability of coming about. Our fixtures to the end of February truly are the sort that could put us in the shite when the real fight against relegation commences. Anyone who has seen our performances this season will testify that we are finding it difficult to beat ANY team.

Is that pessimism or realism? It won’t make me go into each game necessarily expecting to lose but it does make for a scary start to the New Year. Why the cheap jibes at Dick because he expresses something that must have occurred to most Blues?

But on a more upbeat note, I still expect us to beat Brum despite their 5 wins on the trot.
Steve Jones
31   Posted 19/12/2009 at 09:30:24

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"I admit the football was better but in none did we truly deserve to win."

Praising with faint damnation Gavin? I wonder whether you think we deserved to lose those matches?

The derby — we didn't deserve to win — seriously?!

Also would you admit that those, dare I say, improved performances were against alleged quality opposition? Coming up against lesser opposition with the same degree of application as we have shown might not just be grounds for a bit of optimism?
Christian Yandell
32   Posted 19/12/2009 at 09:38:25

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Dick, people like you and Mick Mcarthy make my blood boil. Shall we play the kids against the top 4 and the shite now? As let’s face it we do not have a chance do we... what was your prediction against Chelsea, Dick??? 4-0 maybe? What about Wolves away to Tottenham? Or even Villa away to Man Utd?? These are just a couple of examples from the last 10 days, never mind a season! Oh let’s not forget Burnley who have beat Man U drew with Arsenal beat us etc etc.

EVERY team can beat EVERY team on their day! Fact!

All this "we have no chance" against certain teams is a wank losers attitude. Get behind the team and spread some positivity!! You might just be suprised Dick.
Iain Love
33   Posted 19/12/2009 at 11:02:57

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Why don't we look at last season's league standings and say there’s history so let's stick with that?

No, actually Spurs, Villa, Sunderland, City etc etc have got better players in whilst we have lost a lot of players, so they're better; we’re worse... FACT.

As some of our players have come back, we have got better... and the more that come back, the better we will be.
Coleman/ Hibbert - Jags - Distin- Baines
Pienaar - Heitinga - Arteta- Bily
Donovan/ Cahill/ Fellaini

Now that team WILL keep us well away from relegation, and maybe get us a top 8 finish.

Steve Edwards
34   Posted 19/12/2009 at 11:07:18

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Steve Jones — You're spot on but my worry is that we pick up even more injuries. There’s nothing to say we won’t. I think Moyes may be thinking along the same lines also as he seems determined to bring in extra cover in January.

I think that this lad Donovan will be a breath of fresh air if he has got a bit of pace. It's something the side desperately needs. The guy is no mug and he could make a big difference at a very crucial period in the season.

Steve Jones
35   Posted 19/12/2009 at 11:43:10

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Steve, "my worry is that we pick up even more injuries. There’s nothing to say we won’t."

I know what you are saying and you are dead right of course. The long-term injuries have left us unable to tolerate the ’everyday’ knocks and scrapes that a team picks up through the course of a season.

If we get Arteta back and he’s targetted and taken out by some cynical challenge what happens to our recovery. It's a case of battling for every point and scraping by this season however best we can. Miserable prospect.

Almost anyone would be in the same situation there though — what happens to Spurs if Defoe and Lennon go long-term injured? How about Villa if Agbonlahor and Young or Milner are out? Arsenal are already taking a hit from Van Persie being out — imagine if Fabregas went long-term and then Arshavin loses a hamstring? No need to mention what shape LFC are in with Gerrard and that fairy boy Torres in bits.

We have had our share of bad luck — things are improving with Pienaar and Bilyaletdinov back and, barring the Chelsea game, playing decently. If we could get some stability at the back we’d have a quality edge on the likes of the Sunderlands and Brums now. I honestly believe that we will see that on the pitch tomorrow.

To bring us to a level we need to threaten the best in the league, we need Arteta, Jags and Phil Nevs back and, at this point, you just have to have faith and a bit of hope that the bad luck has to run its course sometime soon!
Martin Mason
36   Posted 19/12/2009 at 17:42:25

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The sad thing here and a true indication perhaps of where the dickhead tag should stick. The author has raised a valid opinion and some good points, the response should be to discuss it on topic and put forward alternative views if you don’t agree. Ad hominen responses are the resort of scoundrels and the lowest form of retort.
Chris Butler
37   Posted 19/12/2009 at 19:49:24

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Injuries are not to blame for our poor form — the players have played poorly all season.
David Hallwood
38   Posted 19/12/2009 at 20:33:21

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The most frustrating thing about this season is that, if we had all the players back and/or if we had kicked on from last season, we might be thinking champions not champions league. Out of the top 4, Man Utd are not the side they were last year, and have lost 4 games already. The Shite is now a description rather than an insult... even Chelsea don’t look invincible.

Of the rest, Villa... as one of the posters said, stop them playing wide and they haven’t got a plan ’B’ (and were you impressed with them when we played them earlier in the season?). Spurs look like they could implode at any minute and City are a collection of good players but not a team. Only dreaming guys but it is Christmas.

Steve Jones
39   Posted 20/12/2009 at 05:44:57

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Chris, "Injuries are not to blame for our poor form — the players have played poorly all season."

Twaddle. Its like asking a brickie to build a wall without any mortar then blaming him for a lack of effort when it falls down.

Without a midfield capable of holding the ball up and distributing it either cleverly through the middle or out to the wings then two things happen:

(1) the striker gets no service and
(2) when the ball is pumped up it comes back on the defence too easily.

With the solid defence we had last season we may have been able to cope with the ravaged midfield. Soaking up a lot and trying to nick goals on the set piece.

We haven't had a defence nearly that settled, missing the talent Jagielka brought and missing the leadership Neville brought. So when the ball has been coming back through the weak midfield and hitting a very much weakened defence.

Even if every man played to the absolute top of his individual ability it would make little difference — the problem is structural. You look at the result Fulham got yesterday, that's because they were a stable, settled, team playing with team spirit and the knowledge of what the other team members would do. United fell down because their structure in defence was shot and they couldn’t break down a strong defensive unit.

Why was Utd’s defence shot? Injuries. No different to us.
Gavin Ramejkis
40   Posted 20/12/2009 at 12:07:44

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Steve Jones, the table doesn’t lie and with the exception of the derby which as I have said on plenty of occasions was against the worst RS team I have seen in 40 years we have not set the world alight. If you set out defensive in games you should look to win then how is it surprising if you lose or draw them? Do you honestly think the team aren’t where they belong in the table right now? Even if you give them three points from the derby that still leaves them in the same mess. The Dick I replied to was Fearon not the author.
Shaun Brennan
41   Posted 20/12/2009 at 12:55:07

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I’m with Dick Anderson. No matter how you dress it up, with lines of injured players comming back etc. We are well and truly fucked this year. 3 points is a must today.

I’m sick of all this shit we have to put up with, 2nd best, excuses from a manager and rallying cries from players on the OS. Proof is in the pudding. How much more do we have to put up with before Moyes joins Hughes in the dole office?

Steve Jones
42   Posted 20/12/2009 at 12:40:58

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Sorry Gavin I find that a strange question?

Of course we are where we belong! With the quality we were left with in the team, and the lack of consistency virtually anywhere in the outfield, I can't see what justification you have for the expectation that we should be setting anything alight?

You say we’ve gone out set up defensively for matches we should have won? You are assuming had we gone out with an attacking setup we would have done better?

Hull?. 3 goals down in how long? Attacking setup!

Without Arteta, Osman, Bilyaletdinov and Pienaar how much of an attacking setup could Moyes have even shaped the team into? If you know, from training, that you aren’t going to get the service to the striker(s) what realistic option is there other than to defend and look for a set piece?

Poor football, but, without a larger squad, that we don't need to be trying to meet the wage bill for, its Hobson's Choice and, until players came back, any point was a good point.

Now we have some options to play better football I fully expect to see better football and, over the Liverpool, Spurs and Chelsea matches we have been fitting that pattern.

We have 3 winnable matches coming up, let's see where we are by then end of the month before we start wringing our hands too much, eh?
Dick Anderson
43   Posted 20/12/2009 at 17:09:43

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Steve Jones

Three winnable games coming up? Well thats one wasted.

Take a look at my main post. I said I fancied a draw against Birmingham and thats what happened.

Now watch as my other predictions come true starting with a boxing day loss at Sunderland.
Terry McLavey
44   Posted 20/12/2009 at 17:37:25

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Seems Dick has some insight! When you have that much possession in a game you really should win it!

Also, could someone tell Mr Pienaar who had two chances from virtually the same place, fundamental rule of football: if you lean back when you shoot, it ends up in the stands! We don’t get that many chances — don’t waste the ones we do get!

Chris Butler
45   Posted 20/12/2009 at 20:15:25

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Listen really, bar Benfica away, which was down to injuries, the rest have been down to poor performaces. At Old Trafford we had chances and wasted them. Against Liverpool we dominated and lost. Against the so-called form team Aston Villa we had plaenty of chances. Yes LS, LN and JH played well at Chelsea but the others were shite.

I’ve come to realise the players have no heart anymore. I’d accept playing the way we did in the early Moyes years as, bar Rooney, we had poor players. Moyes doesn’t make changes until 10 mins or even less until the final whistle.

We don’t have any fighters in the team such as Anichebe. It's so easy to blame injuries for our poor form. West Ham and Pompey we played shite. Bolton we just couldn’t be arsed and just sat back; same at Fulham.

I think our problems lie at the top of the club, the people in charge... the players have lost motivation. At the end of the season we could lose Arteta, Jagelka and Saha.

I’m no expert but to have 3 players surrounding Benitez caused the goal. Look at Jermaine Defoe under Harry Rednapp at Spurs and Pompey he's done brilliant. Playing high balls to the Yak and Saha is stupid.

Pienaar today reminded me why so many fans disliked him when he started at Everton and he got a lot of abuse. He is too lighweight and doesn’t have enough pace to be a decent winger. Baines is the only one in the side that's performed this year.

Gavin Ramejkis
46   Posted 21/12/2009 at 07:43:22

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Scratch one Steve, still think we will get 6 points from the next two?

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