Seemingly everything in our favour beforehand and even more so when Nick the Greek got sent off — so what do we do: produce another Birmingham performance.
That was inexcusably poor today and I'm getting tired of us just rolling over like this virtually every time we play Liverpool.
How can a team of ugly misfits swat us like a dozy fly?
And let's not blame Moyes or Kenwright for once. That was the players' fault. Have they no collective intelligence?
Losing Fellaini was a blow, but even the worry that our back four might be exposed didn't materialise and ultimately the lack of protection didn't matter.
What did mater was that Liverpool stepped up a gear and scrapped for every ball. Everton, meanwhile, looked like they'd turned up for a pre-season friendly against Rochdale.
Pienaar has been off his game for a few matches, and it really showed today when we needed him to take the game by the scruff of the neck.
Saha combined a general appearance of disinterest with poor control and lack of movement.
Osman was completely anonymous.
But perhaps the main disappointment was Neville, who although he didn't put a foot wrong, just isn't a threat down the right. That, in turn, significantly lessens Donovan's threat.
The combined result was an overall lack of cohesion. A team of lacklustre individuals running up against a wall of determined opponents who wanted the ball more. Much more.
Only Heitinga earned his money today. He looks so assured in everything he does.
The game itself was a crashing bore — but was clearly there for the taking. Sadly, our players didn't have the wit, or the will, to seize the opportunity.
So once again our inability to realise our potential in a derby match manifests itself. I wonder if the players feel it anything as bad as we do?
It really, really mattered today and they let us down.
Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer
1 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:16:44
2 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:09:04
I can’t critisize Osman-didn’t know he played today. Moyes never has had a plan ’B’ why do we expect one now.
3 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:27:45
4 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:35:18
We can all see that, except Moyes, and he plays him there instead of Coleman.
Does anyone know were Rodwell was today?
5 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:31:55
I hate to say it but "the dogs of war" we definitely ain't. We seem to have no stomach for a physical pressing game anymore.
More importantly, today illustrated that we can't keep a clean sheet and can't score goals.
Not a recipe for a European place — let alone 4th!!
6 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:43:50
7 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:51:32
Today was indeed a game for us to show our fighting qualities, but I think we needed more composure on the ball. The Shite were set up for the battle and the tactic of shoving on two muscular forwards at the end played into their hands. Especially when we didn’t use the width and get in behind them to supply crosses.
We got out-battled, but we weren’t out-witted. No, our failings were of our own; we made it easy for them. No variation in our play, no penetration.
8 Posted 06/02/2010 at 18:04:44
I agree with everything you say above David, except for one thing: it is time for Moyes to go. If this club is ever going to challenge for any kind of real honour (sorry, one Cup Final in which we didn’t show up doesn’t count for much), it will have to be under a much more tactically astute manager.
Moyes out now!
9 Posted 06/02/2010 at 18:07:56
I’ve always thought Howard dodgy but shouldn’t Neville have marked Kuyt goal-side? Compare Reina to Howard sweeping behind his back four also. Ngog’s half-chance first half v Saha’s run through from Osman’s ball typify it.
I’m not sure Saha touched the ball with his foot first half and he’s another who has been poor lately IMO. A thoroughly depressing afternoon.
10 Posted 06/02/2010 at 17:52:38
The advantage when playing 10 men is gained by moving the opposition around the pitch by playing quick incisive football. Time and time again we allowed them to file back and re-organise their defences before resorting to the time-honoured hoofball.
11 Posted 06/02/2010 at 18:32:08
Also, the goal; What the hell was Howard and the rest of the defence up to? Defence — no-one took responsibility and attacked the ball. Howard: too busy trying to make space by wrestling with Kuyt. If he had just concentrated on the ball he would have a) had more chance of getting to it b) had more of a chance of getting the free kick for an infringement against Kuyt. By pushing him first he lost the right of appeal for being fouled and also arguably allowed the chance of a penalty shout. Poor.
12 Posted 06/02/2010 at 20:05:38
As regards the physical side we also bottled that with Birmingham.
We may have spiritual fight but not physical toughness. We needed Dunc and the dogs of war today and all we got was damp squibs.
So much for all the pre match talking.
13 Posted 06/02/2010 at 21:52:43
14 Posted 06/02/2010 at 21:36:00
What were we doing??? A criminal lack of intelligence, no sense of urgency, an unbelievable lack of self belief, a scary inferiority complex.
It was like the cup final all over again, Suddenly presented with an unexpected advantage, we didn’t know what to do with it and, disturbingly, played as though we were scared of it.
Point to this, point to that - we can talk all day about a ref who seemed to think it was his job to even things up, but we gave him too many opportunities to do so.
i believe that today showed that we are still hamstrung by the circumstances we have found ourselves in for too long. Playing safe and holding what we’ve got has become so ingrained in our mentality that we just don’t seem to be able to step up through the gears and be ruthless when we are dealt a good hand, however we find ourselves with it.
I’m not gonna criticise the team for trying, for the most part, to get the ball down and play on the deck. but what’s the point of givin it to Arteta and then just standing and watching without giving him options?
Yes the potential is there, but we need to learn and apply the lesson - you play for 90 mins each and every game. a great performance against City, or anyone else for that matter, does not allow you to cruise for a few or buy you a few games to go through the motions. How can we go out and steamroller man city and then play with such a lack of tempo against a pretty average Liverpool team that we outplayed at home and were desperately unlucky to lose to?
Why did we make it so easy for them and present tem with braggin ammo that they could barely have dreamed of gettin?
You let us down boys, Badly, disgracefully, shamefully. What are you goin to do about it? Are u gonna fight like hell on Wednesday or sulk?
We may hope for victory, although we don’t necessarily expect it. but you know what we do expect. DO NOT LET US DOWN AGAIN.
Of course I’ll be there.
15 Posted 06/02/2010 at 22:11:52
16 Posted 07/02/2010 at 01:00:10
17 Posted 07/02/2010 at 08:23:28
Take the neighbours out of the equation and I have not spoken to a single other fan from a different club who does not think Moyes is anything other than excellent.
Of course that doesn’t matter on here because despite having his hands tied behind his back in the transfer market for 8 years we demand that he out perform clubs with much bigger budgets. More often than not he has managed to do this and only comes up short against teams who’s debt interest repayments are more than what he has to spend in the transfer market. Whilst dealing with all of the above he has quietly built the best squad we have seen at Everton since the Mid 80’s.
Of course yesterday was dissapointing and guess what folks - you might get a couple more of them before the end of February. But to continually harp on about Moyes, Hibbert, Osman, Neville and the likes is just tiresome.
I understand where the frustration comes from but don’t blame the manager unless you can think of anyone else who could come in and do much a better job on the same budget.
Wake up and smell the coffee.
18 Posted 07/02/2010 at 11:25:48
19 Posted 07/02/2010 at 12:10:13
20 Posted 08/02/2010 at 07:37:16
Does that dross you you mention include an FA Cup Final, 4-5-5-6 finishes in the league against sides with much much bigger budgets and changing the club from perrenial relegation battlers to top of the pile outside the billionaire backed top 4?
There is not one reason or, dare I say it, Fact that could point to it being time for a change.
21 Posted 08/02/2010 at 11:58:28
22 Posted 08/02/2010 at 12:18:39
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment to Fan Articles, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.
Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and MailBag submissions across the site.