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After The Dust Has Settled

By Steve Hogan :  07/02/2010 :  Comments (14) :
Much was said before the Derby game about how this was possibly Everton's best chance for a first victory at Anfield for ten years, I kind of guessed that this was never going to happen.

Put simply, Liverpool deserved their victory, because even down to ten men, they had more individuals in their team who simply 'wanted it more'.

I would have loved it if we had someone like Carew of Aston Villa up front who loves a physical battle; instead, we simply played right into their hands, by punting long ball after long ball towards the heads of Carragher and Agger.

The substitutes, when they did arrive, made little or no difference. Feed the Yak... well judging by the size of him know, somebody has been feeding him for the past month non-stop. How can a professional let his weight balloon to that size?

The sending off of the greek night club bouncer, and the injury suffered by Fellaini, hurt us more than it hurt them; we didn't have the individuals in our team prepared to take the game by the scruff of the neck and take the fight to them.

And what part does our manager play in this? A pretty big role in my estimate — there was simply no plan B; when Liverpool had all ten players behind the ball, they were so comfortable it was untrue, they were quite prepared to let us weave pretty patterns in midfield but not actually get anywhere.

We had absolutely NO penetration or width whatsover. I can't recall Reina making more than a couple of saves in the second half at all, when we should have been peppering his goal with shots.

Most Evertonians I know felt pure anger and a feeling that the team and certain individuals had let them down bigtime. Do they really know the hurt it feels? Probably not as they slink away to their out of town country houses having picked up their £30-40k weekly wages.

One final word, much as Gerrard is a fantastic player, what a shithouse of an individual he is. Once again, he followed the referee around the field talking in his ear all the time, then followed it up by continually 'diving' to win free kicks.

Then to cap it all, he followed thru on Pienaar with a late tackle and then collapsed in a heap 'holding his face' when Pienaar jumped late into him.

By this stage Moyes should have subbed Piennar anyway as the crowd and opposing players were desperate for him to get a second yellow.

Will we ever learn?

Reader Comments

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Franny Porter
1   Posted 07/02/2010 at 19:07:49

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In a word... No.
Keith Glazzard
2   Posted 07/02/2010 at 20:51:38

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"And what part does our manager play in this? "

At a guess, a fairly big one. Like choosing the squad, and how to deploy them.

I’ll bet he doesn’t tell them to go out and break legs like Rafael Benitez - sorry, the Fat Spanish Waiter, the FSW is a figure of fun, this guy sent his hitmen to hurt on the day. And they did.

Moyes does well. They sucked us into a firefight and we lost our king. They sacrificed a pawn.
Tony Williams
3   Posted 07/02/2010 at 21:07:19

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Steve, Pienaar was already missing a game as he has 5 yellows now, so taking him off for the fear of a second yellow would have been pointless and he lasted until injury time so no logic there. He should have been subbed earlier, as he was playing gash.

They kicked us all around the park and the ref let them for a good 20 minutes and then after the sending off he let them do whatever they wanted. Not the ref’s fault we lost but he certainly didn’t help, what with Stevies Mee Laaa’s theatrics and fouling
Alan Clarke
4   Posted 07/02/2010 at 21:17:08

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Too many Evertonians believe we have good players. There’s been all this nonsense recently about what a good squad we have. We don’t, we have a distinctly average squad. Every player bar Heitinga and Arteta looked shite yesterday.

After the dust has setlled, it’s obvious we are an average side with an average manager. This season has been nothing short of disastrous. We’ve played well in about 3 games so far, the rest has been utter dog shit to watch.

I got slaughtered on here a couple of weeks ago for suggesting Moyes was our glass ceiling. He’s been seriously found out this year.
Jamie Connor
5   Posted 07/02/2010 at 21:38:58

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Just a word on gerrards constant diving.... Why has tv replays and pundits never ever picked up on that when gerrard is ’fouled’ no matter where the challenge came from or no matter how heavy he outstretches his arms, spreads his legs wide and drops like a stone to the ground. Everytime guaranteed!!
Gerry Western
6   Posted 08/02/2010 at 00:24:19

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Steve, pretty much summed the game up for me. Just to add to the discussion on Gerrard. I watched Sky highlights Sunday, am presented by Kamara, interestingly the focus was on Everton misdemeanors no real mention of Gerrard other than an attempt to portray him in a better light.

Kamara announced that Evertonian’s who might have accused Gerrard of feigning injury would have a different view after they watch the footage from another angle. They then show the incident from one angle which showed beyond doubt that there was no contact. Surprisingly, they then show it from yet another angle in which Piennar’s position is totally obscured and all that’s visible is the back of Gerrard’s head. It’s pretty much impossible to see anything of the collision. He then goes on to say it’s clear from this angle that there was contact. Priceless, I’ve seen and heard it all now.
Matthew Mackey
7   Posted 08/02/2010 at 09:51:30

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May I suggest the next time we play the RS we just put the reserve team out and preserve our so called big guns for another day. This way we will not get the usual red and yellow cards by the sack full and thus have then available for the next fixture where "football" may actually break out! It may also confuse the fuck out of them when 11 kids, majority of whom speak with a local dialect, actually are there to play the game.
Eugene Ruane
8   Posted 08/02/2010 at 10:57:22

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Alan Clarke - I agree completely and my only ’but’ is as follows.

Our situation is one that should surprise nobody, as average players and an average manager is what average money buys you these days.

As we have all seen since Sky took over football, a lot of money buys you a lot of wins/success.

It is a fact.

I know a lot of supporters choose not to accept this but they’re just plain wrong (and results prove them wrong).

Of COURSE from time-to-time, Birmingham (or whoever) will beat Utd, but it’ll be a rarity and they WON’T win the league.

The ONLY way there can now be a fair league is that every club is owned by a billionaire prepared to spend.

As this won’t happen, we need to accept that unless somebody (FIFA, UEFA, THE FA, Prem) steps in to change things (and they won’t!) the most money will win the most trophies (and as I’ve said, average money...etc)

This leaves us exactly as you describe us, with no hope in sight of any real change.

The future for Everton is the occasional decent performance, the occasional awful defeat, but generally average, average, average (players, performances, manager, etc)

Depressing, but there it is.

How many of us have been flummoxed this season at how bad the reds seem to be doing, week-by-week and yet when we’ve looked at a League table....they’re still (sort of) ’up there’?

"How come they’re still fucking sixth/fifth?" I’ve thought to myself on a few occasions this season, "they’re getting tonked every week (not true) yet when we don’t perform, we seem to plummet".

The answer is money.

The money they’ve spent (no matter how unwise we might think some of their buys) means their shit, is nowhere near as shitty as our shit.

For me, those who refuse to accept that money means success and no money means no success, behave the same way as the child who covers his/her eyes to make the world vanish.

And doesn’t.
Stephen Ryan
9   Posted 08/02/2010 at 11:44:28

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Sadly, Allan Clarke, your comments are spot-on. If only we played games on paper.
Dave Lynch
10   Posted 08/02/2010 at 12:32:05

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Football will have to change and quickly. The majority of the so-called wealthy clubs can barely sustain their debt. Wages are astronomical and if it carries on this way fans will leave in their droves.
The only way forward is a salary cap, aka rugby league. The authorities will have to create a level playing field sooner rather than later. Otherwise the game is fooked.
Mike Elbey
11   Posted 08/02/2010 at 12:47:17

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There is little doubt that the RS game plan was to play a physical game from the outset and pienaar and fellaini where definately targeted.

If the game had been at Goodison they would have been down to about 8 men by half time but Atkinson was predictably sucked into the sespit atmosphere and allowed messers Gerrard, Carragher and Mashcerano to referee the game.

That said is there anything wrong with those tactics if the referee allows it, afterall we employed the same tactics throughout the Big Joe era and rarely lost.

What concerned me most about Saturday was that we had no answer to the game the RS played aside from a couple of a nasty challenge rom Pienaar. Next year at Anfield we need to pick the players who are up for the fight and give them it back.

On the tactics side the second half was embarrasing. Coleman should have been introduced to run at the hopeless Insua and this should have happened at half time with them down to 10 men.

Usually I feel Moyes gives an honest review of a game to the press but his press conference after Saturday makes me feel he was at a different game. Liverpool deserved to win on Saturday, not because they were better than us but because we were worse than them (if you know what I mean).
Alan Clarke
12   Posted 08/02/2010 at 14:01:55

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Spot on too Eugene. I think too many people allowed themselves to get carried away before the derby. Some even asked whether Arteta would get back into our midfield such was the quality of it! A lot of fans on Sunday and this week will have sore arses from the bump they had when they crashed back down to earth.

It’s an old cliche but the table doesn’t lie. We used to be best of the rest and now we’re just a bit better than the relegation fodder below us. It’s been a massive step backwards this season and that has largely to do with finance. Our manager is shit too but if that’s all we can afford then that’s all we can expect.
Jamie Connor
13   Posted 08/02/2010 at 19:08:21

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Our manager is shit?! Get a grip will ya. Moyes has rebuilt the club, not the team from the sorry state it was in. Ask yourself where would we be if we never had him in that time, still at bellfield with the academy in 2 porter cabins at switch island for a start. Yeah we’ve been the best of the rest lately and that little bit of investment could have pushed us on but look at all the clubs with rich sugar daddys and I wouldn’t want to swap with any of them. They will be the ones who come crashing back to earth in the coming years - guaranteed
Peter McHugh
14   Posted 09/02/2010 at 13:16:23

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Disagree, Alan, I don’t think Pienaar, Fellaini and Saha are average. I thought Fellaini was yet again our best player and Pienaar and Saha had absolute stinkers.

I agree that Moyes ain’t taking us anywhere, we’ve needed more pace and creativity for years — only excuse I can give, which is perhaps justified to be fair to him, is that lack of cash stops him. However, inability to change tactics, make substitutions, stick two men on post for corners, not have 11 people in own box, teach players to keep possession from throw-ins — these things do not cost money, just simple tactics & coaching.

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