The main one is the injuries argument which I agree with to an extent. Everton had more players injured than any other side and it didn’t help that they included our two best players.
Another theory was that Destination Kirkby distracted the players and the manager — I don’t believe that for 1 minute, but it was a distraction for us fans.
Another theory again that has an element of truth was the Lescott saga which I felt was complete nonsense as we still had decent centre backs in the team at that time and JL wasn’t exactly jaw-dropping the season previous.
I believe our problems were caused by a useless pre-season; we again didn’t manage to get in one superstar or someone that’s exciting to watch. Bily has scored a lot of goals but, other than that, hasn’t been that impressive. Why we ever kept Jô I still don’t know as most fans thought he was pretty useless in the first stint.
I think there is still a doubt of Moyes's credentials. I watched the games against Stoke and Portsmouth and realised that both sides had got us sussed from the very off. They just played deep knowing we didn’t have any central midfielders capable of playing through-balls or beating players. They just made sure that Baines didn’t get in behind them and it worked perfectly.
Saha is often moaned at by numerous fans for being lazy but I blame Moyes's tactics for his poor performances. Everton still don’t have a fast winger and a player like Gerrard who can run off the striker, shoot and take on players. Cahill isn’t a midfielder, he’s a striker. Much of Everton’s brilliant play towards the end of the 2008-09 season was a result of this position move.
Moyes's failure to make big changes in our team where we need changes has always worried me. In the 2007-08 season, I was a big fan of Moyes and his signings. We had two excellent strikers, both tactically different, which gave us better options. We had two brilliant wingers, with Arteta and Pienaar regularly swapping wings to create havoc for opposing defences.
Our central midfield was even better with clearly defined roles. Carsley was a defensive midfielder but could also shoot as well. Gravesen didn’t ever reach the heights he did in his first spell but nevertheless gave us strength in depth. Manual Fernandez was used as an attacking midfielder who infuriated some fans but delighted others. He has been the only real player under Moyes who could play through balls and didn’t rely on playing the ball to the wings all the time. Osman was another player that could also come into the team and play in a variety of positions.
Everton’s football that year was terrific and in my opinion it was a far better squad than we now have. Everton now play boring dull football that frustrates many supporters, including me. The thing that worries me the most in Moyes is that he has never been ruthless enough to make big changes in games or to our team.
At the moment, we have no right-sided midfielder or attacking midfielder. We have no striker that can get in behind teams and cause them problems like we had with Andy Johnson. Our play is often slow and laboured as we don’t have any pace in the team.
I think we have too many similar players now in the team. Fellaini often does the exact same job as Rodwell and Arteta. Now Arteta has been moved to central midfield, we have no winger who can beat a man, which often leads our right back or left back out of position — that's what Stoke took advantage of.
Cahill has scored a lot of important goals yet, in his current position, he is worse than useless. The problem is that Moyes cannot see these problems in our team that everyone else can see. In my opinion, Moyes will never satisfy most Blues until he can show some metal in buying and selling players shrewdly and quickly.
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1 Posted 04/06/2010 at 07:12:45
"Dull boring football" ...??? Are you joking? We've played some great football this season only hindered by when Arteta / Pienaar has been missing. You seem to have overlooked that our points total since Christmas has only been bettered by Chelsea and Man Utd, despite losing Fellaini who had been a revelation this season. Rodwell will be a fine player but he's nowhere near the finished article yet.
The wide right player problem was helped by the loan of Donovan, who Moyes was confident enough in his ability to start him against Arsenal at the Emirates when many doubted the wisdom of his arrival. Bily, for all his faults in his initial season still scored 7 goals, ... 2 of which were magnificent strikes demonstrating his potential to really improve in the coming season.
The season before last, to which you refer, we had Yak firing on all cylinders; since his injury, he's not been half the player he was and subsequent reports that before the injury he was planning a move to Spurs may indicate why... Louis had a great first half to last season but his lack of goals was never due to lack of service — he missed some chances he'd have buried earlier on... and even fluffed a couple of penalties!!
Moyes is the best man by far for the job, something I suspect we'll discover to our immense loss when he gets fed up with Kenwright not giving him any real financial backing and he walks away.
2 Posted 04/06/2010 at 07:37:09
"We have no striker that can get in behind teams and cause them problems like we had with Andy Johnson" - How many goals did he score for us again?
"Osman was another player that could also come into the team and play in a variety of positions" — but most readers of this website would rather he wasn't even in the ground, never mind the team.
Sorry but some of your points don't gel with what others have been writing on here over tha last season.
3 Posted 04/06/2010 at 08:07:31
Boring:– Most goals scored since 95-96 season and only 6 matches when we did not score.
Question buying/selling:– Howard, Jags, Heitinga, Baines, Arteta, Fellaini, Cahill, Yakubu, Saha, Pineaar – all bought by Moyes for about £50M (don't get picky might be £55M) plus Lescott, Johnson, Kilbane, Bent, sold for big profits.
Sorry, this is silly season mails to create controversy – sorry I fell for it and replied.
4 Posted 04/06/2010 at 08:59:15
5 Posted 04/06/2010 at 09:02:52
One can drive an HGV lorry through the many holes in your argument and, deep down, I suspect you know that.
6 Posted 04/06/2010 at 09:08:26
All of the above happened and guess what? The Sky 4 struggled, surprise surprise, and all four managers gave it as a reason for poor form.
As for Everton, for the first 3 months we didn't have a settled back 4, which saw both Neville & Hibbert playing centre back, and Coleman at LB. Once we got everyone back, we started to play our best football. Your best footballers make your best team... Doh!
7 Posted 04/06/2010 at 09:18:34
If you are 12 years old then I apologise, but otherwise I've never read a mailbag article so far wide of the mark.
8 Posted 04/06/2010 at 09:20:33
I think it's about time we had a manager with the balls to spunk £20m on a player and only start him twice in a season. We really need a manager who can take promising young talent and utterly destroy it, or who has the cahones to take off the only goalscorer on the pitch at 0-0 in a must-win game. Come in Rafa, the tablets have worn off, we're ready for you...
Back on topic, once we had the majority of the first team available, we started to play some of the best footie I've seen in the Old Lady since the late 80s. I agree we do need to look at the flanks (particularly if little Stevie buggers off), but Bily has a lot of potential for the left, Landon would be a great capture for the right if it can be pulled off, a bit of back-up in the form of Petrov from Citeh or similar would see us nicely balanced and leave a CM pairing of Mikky and Felli... not bad at all.
Providing we manage to dodge the injuries bullet next season, there's no reason we couldn't replicate our post Christmas form and mount a real challenge for a top 4 place.
In summary, things could be a hell of a lot worse, and are a lot better than could be expected with our financial constraints.
9 Posted 04/06/2010 at 09:51:45
I disagree with almost everything you've written.
10 Posted 04/06/2010 at 10:12:02
11 Posted 04/06/2010 at 10:06:13
He has certain traits that are ingrained, and that he finds hard to shift... Inability to drop players, playing players in the wrong positions, lack of tactical astuteness, using the wrong formations against certain opposition, picking a captain on merit, not throwing his toys out of the pram etc,etc...
We could alternatively all consider him to be the perfect manager (doesn't exist KH) - the Moyesiah if you like — and ignore his shortcomings..
Sometimes — 'he's not the Moyesiah, he's a very naughty boy'.
12 Posted 04/06/2010 at 10:12:09
13 Posted 04/06/2010 at 10:10:29
I sometimes have my doubts that he is the man to take us forward and lead the club to greatness, but until somebody stumps up the cash, I guess we'll never know.
14 Posted 04/06/2010 at 10:12:15
The Shite away... Villa away... Birmingham away... West Ham home.... Wolves away... Stoke away...
Taking into consideration those points dropped, we would have had a total of at least 71 points which means we would have finished 4th... enough said.
15 Posted 04/06/2010 at 11:19:34
"At the moment, we have no right-sided midfielder or attacking midfielder." — All my contributions to the FM-style threads are along these lines. If we sign Kanchelskis and Bergkamp, we're as good as anyone.
"Cahill isn’t a midfielder, he’s a striker" — This I agree with, but I don't understand your point. Cahill played as a striker all season.
And to answer the question in the title: Yes.
16 Posted 04/06/2010 at 12:50:53
However, I actually believe he has built a tremendous squad now and we play better football than we ever have under him.
In terms of ruthless, I think he does have what it takes, he bought Beattie, replaced him with Johnson, replaced by Yak, i.e. all replaced with better players. Jury is out with re: Beckford and whether he replaces Yak.
I think the pertinent questions about Moyes's shortcomings are still his tactics and substitutions rather than his ability to get the best out of a group of players and pick diamonds out the rough.
17 Posted 04/06/2010 at 12:29:59
18 Posted 04/06/2010 at 13:30:10
19 Posted 04/06/2010 at 13:26:37
We played some of the best football I have ever seen Everton play last season so yes, I do trust Moyes, warts and all. We would be a lot worse off without him.
20 Posted 04/06/2010 at 13:55:17
21 Posted 04/06/2010 at 14:23:29
Moyes is by far our most important asset, and to lose him would be FAR, FAR WORSE than losing any player.
22 Posted 04/06/2010 at 14:29:05
23 Posted 04/06/2010 at 14:42:18
I don't agree we play dull, boring football, far from it. Teams below us can suss us out and play deep defensively to counter our passing game.
There is also no doubt that the injuries to our experienced creative players at the start of the season hampered our overall performance. Also there is no doubt the Lescott saga affected our season. We were once more incapable of conducting any business without that transfer being completed.
What this does put me in mind of is our relative position vis a vis our red neighbours. Benitez has gone and has been branded a failure. We finished below them. I won't accept finishing behind them this year or behind Villa. To me this will be failure. The other teams above us will be difficult to crack but I think their commitments abroad and at the World Cup will hamper them.
I trust Moyes, his record is excellent given the investment, and he is without doubt an Everton man just as Benitez was a Liverpool man. Next season he has to deliver more, mind... or the Moyes/Kenwright years will be judged a failure.
24 Posted 04/06/2010 at 15:09:19
Now I know some of you out there are going to accuse me of being in the 'Moyes Out' Brigade — but hear me out. Why oh why, can somebody please explain, does Moyes play 4-5-1 EVERY match or at least in 95% of matches? It's understandable if we are playing one of the top 4... but at home against lower table opponents!!!??? It's hardly any wonder that some of our strikers have struggled, surely not all of them are suited to playing the lone striker role. For goodness sake, do you think Latchford would have managed to score 30 goals in that formation!!?
No I am not anti-Moyes — just absolutely frustrated with the man. Is this the same guy who in the opening game of his first full season v Spurs at Goodison actually played 4-3-3?
If we are going to challenge for a top 6 place or trophies, we must be more adventurous. We have to make progress from being difficult to beat to winning at least 50% - 55% of our League games. Yes, we beat Chelsea, Man Utd... but look at the points dropped against Stoke, Wolves etc. Moyes has got to be more adventurous.
25 Posted 04/06/2010 at 15:30:48
Spot on, Chris. Moyes also failed to walk on water and didn't manage to feed the Goodison faithful with 5 pies and 2 pints of warm Chang either. GET RID!
26 Posted 04/06/2010 at 14:12:52
The excellent displays against the Manchester clubs, Chelsea and Arsenal in the second half of the season contrast starkly to polar opposite displays against Liverpool, West Ham and others which I feel are a direct result of his defensive mindset.
He will maintain our mid-table safety and avoid relegation. The realist approach oft quoted here regarding finance etc means we have a glass ceiling outside the top 6; our best players consequently are fair game to those above.
The real question about DM for me is, as a top class manager, should he be accepting this? (I hesitate to ask whether fellow Evertonians should accept it... I think I know the answer!)
27 Posted 04/06/2010 at 15:43:44
One question though, if Stoke's and Porstmouth's managers can figure us out, why can't Ancelotti and Ferguson?
I seem to remember us giving their respective teams a spanking (all right, a little much... but ahh well). Surely the manager of the team who won the league should have outsmarted little old Davey?....what's that? They didn't beat us this season... the first time in Moyes's reign. I wonder if he is actually starting to learn now?
28 Posted 04/06/2010 at 15:49:49
However, "inability to drop players." To replace them with whom exactly? The dozen or so occupying the treatment table, perhaps? "Playing players in the wrong position" ditto.
"Using the wrong formation against certain opposition." Wonderful thing, hindsight...
"Picking a captain on merit." No other team in the world, save for the Italian national team, does that!! John Terry had a stinker for weeks on end after the Bridge affair, as I'm sure you'll recall (on television) Louis exploiting that; Did Ancelotti drop him, and what was the net result? A captain is a captain, and the armband shouldn't be passed around like a set of car keys.
For what it's worth, I'd like to see Cahill captain, due to his character, but unlike you,I wouldn't presume to know better than a professional football manager.
"Throwing his toys out of the pram." Seriously... No clue.
Please don't invent a fictitious picture of where my opinions lie, or presume to know them anyway, simply because I asked you for clarification. I don't believe, never have, or stated that Moyes is the perfect manager, but I'll answer the clearly disingenuous question posed by the author, and state that Yes, I do trust him.
But I'm sure that, even from your armchair, it's been plainly obvious for some time now, that he's working with one arm tied behind his back. Despite these constraints, the man's done an outstanding job, and no knee-jerk reaction to the fact we went backwards last year is going to change the more rounded view I have of him.
29 Posted 04/06/2010 at 17:01:30
30 Posted 04/06/2010 at 17:09:25
I still prefer our midfield with Gemmill and Pembridge in it.
31 Posted 04/06/2010 at 17:28:56
32 Posted 04/06/2010 at 17:52:39
33 Posted 04/06/2010 at 18:50:45
In my view, Everton would be in a stronger position had David Moyes been replaced when he dithered over his contract. I don't think holding that view makes me any less of an Evertonian than those who think David Moyes is beyond criticism.
I think the question posed in the article is emotive. Do I trust David Moyes to have the tactical ability to move the club forward? No. Do I trust his integrity, his commitment, and his honour? Absolutely.
I admire David Moyes in many ways but I think the response to Chris's article is unfair. Debate the points he has made but don't attack his motives. This site is for all Evertonians.
34 Posted 04/06/2010 at 18:56:08
Arteta is not a central midfielder. Remember is performances swapping flanks they were terrific.
Where would you put Cahill and Bily in the team you would, would you not? What formation would you play? Brendan, is it too much to ask to play 4-4-2 against Portsmouth at home.
35 Posted 04/06/2010 at 19:11:33
36 Posted 04/06/2010 at 19:09:42
Jay, so the Everton team in 2007-08 that finished 5th, and would of finished higher if it wasn't for a few dodgy decisions, were inferior to the team that finished 8th?
Yes, I accept you may not agree with anything... but that's the same with all blues. We all have our favourite player, favorite stand, favourite goal, favourite victory, favourite pub — but it doesn't mean they're inferior opinions.
37 Posted 04/06/2010 at 19:30:17
38 Posted 04/06/2010 at 19:32:56
Andy, when you see certain poster's name, you will pretty much know what to expect in their posts; we have all been on here long enough to know what other posters are like.
Chris, the question still stands "One question though, if Stoke's and Porstmouth's managers can figure us out, why can't Ancelotti and Ferguson?" (I seem to recall us doing the double over Portsmouth and two draws against Stoke, but hey they must have gotten the better of us then!)
The majority of posters, if not 99.9% of them, do not think Moyes is beyond criticism, that is just a lazy soundbite just like the "apologist" label. They just don't see the need to continually try and persuade people who think differently, that they are wrong.
39 Posted 04/06/2010 at 19:55:04
40 Posted 04/06/2010 at 20:14:10
Arteta played the best he has ever played for Everton in central midfield before he got injured last season.
Arteta has said himself countless times his natural and best position is central midfield.
David Moyes has said Arteta's best position is central midfield.
I think that would suggest he is in fact a central midfielder.
41 Posted 04/06/2010 at 21:47:06
42 Posted 04/06/2010 at 22:48:38
Quote from WSAG: "When Arteta played against the 10-foot 18-stone central midfielders, he clearly struggled to adapt, when he was moved to the wings we really started to get the best out of him." This information was printed in the 4-4-2 issue about classy players in the Premier League. This was when Arteta was on the wings — not in central midfield.
Arteta can cross, take on wing backs, he's two footed, can keep control of the ball all of which are ideally suited to a winger. Whether his repostion to central midfield was with the view that Everton would be signing a right winger I do not know.
Arteta doesn't like the gritty bits of the game, yet he is no Fabregas. Arteta isn't robust enough or fast enough to play like Darren Fletcher. Sometimes against teams such as Hull, Manchester City, Spurs, Sunderland he will be able to work his magic but against more phycial teams like Bolton and Chelsea he'll struggle.
Tony, we beat Manchester United and Chelsea because of a few moments of class and Terry's dopey defending. Saha's goal against Chelsea was out of this world as was both Bily's and Rodwell's goal against United. But the reason why we won both was because of Landon Donovan who made fools of Evra and Cole.
Donovan's departure probably cost us a European place as his arrival started our turnaround.
43 Posted 04/06/2010 at 23:12:29
I think now even Moyes's biggest critics can accept he's taking us in the right direction. He's stopped the hoofball and we finally have midfield players willing to pass the ball.
44 Posted 05/06/2010 at 00:23:36
In my opinion, the best I have seen Arteta play, as I have mentioned previously, was when he was moved into central midfield in the 2008-09 season, where he excelled until his injury up at Newcastle.
Furthermore, you say he does not like the gritty stuff. I would have to disagree, in the period he was in central midfield, he was constantly getting stuck in and winning tacles, reminding me very much of Howard Kendall who always seemed to come away with the ball when he went in for a tackle.
You mention he will struggle against teams like Chelsea but, from were I was sat, he didn't seem to be struggling too much when we beat Chelsea this season — and this was when he was nursing himself back from a year-long injury.
Furthermore, I would rather form my opinions from actually going to the match and not from reading 442. I read an article in that magazine at the start of last season I think where they had picked a young player from each team in the league who was going to make the breakthrough last season. Everton's chosen young player to make the breakthrough into the first team was... Leon Osman.
Granted, Arteta looks good on the wing, due to the fact that he is an all-round excellent footballer who would most likely stand out wherever he was played on the park; however, this does not mean he is not a central midfielder essentially.
45 Posted 05/06/2010 at 02:37:20
“The gaffer has always been there to help me," the midfielder says. "He’s the one who took me to England and had a lot of confidence in me.
"When someone shows you that kind of respect you really want to pay them back someday and all I had to do was work very hard because I knew the talent was there. He demands a lot from the players and always emphasises teamwork.
“I’ve often wondered when he gets chance to go to sleep because he is the hardest working manager I’ve ever come across and that has rubbed off on his players as well. Everyone has to give 100% no matter how good you are.”
46 Posted 05/06/2010 at 02:40:34
Remember the Gravedigger when he moved from the right side into the middle? Same thing. OK there has been a huge hole on the right since, but moving The Conductor back there isn't the answer.
47 Posted 05/06/2010 at 13:08:23
That's a pretty concrete opinion — concentrate less on the Thesaurus and more on the substance of you posts.
By the way, your rebutal of my criticisms is nothing but teary-eyed pap.
48 Posted 05/06/2010 at 17:38:02
Maybe crucifying Chris isn't what we should be doing. But a lot of what you say, Chris... well, i couldn't disagree more.
I think Moyes is the man for us! if not who else? Please tell me.
Also Bily, some may disagree but I'm sure we are all looking past the fact that he only scored 7 goals. 2 good! 5 I'd argue any other player in his positions would had scored. He also missed sitters.
Have to say, I'm not sure that we will see much more from Bily. He's scared on the ball. Worst of all, scared of making a tackle, not to mention THICK!! Nevertheless, I stood up and went crazy with the rest of the fans when he scored. Especially the united goal.
Pienaar is quality. We need to keep hold of him. but something tells me he's going, no doubt.
Mighty Mikel. Much needed player!
I'm glad we got rid of Joleon; players who want more than £55k a week I'm afraid have to prove they are world class. He wasn't. That's not to say he wasn't brilliant for us for a long period of time.
Jo? Well, he is that ugly girlfriend you had for a few years and dare not to tell ya mates about!
Did someone say they would rather Osman wasn't in the ground never mind the pitch? Harsh, considering the end he had to his season, plus you can guarantee he will run his tits off and try anything if we're loosing a game to bring it back.
I'm positive about 2010-11. I think if all the boys are fit, and we keep most of our big boys, we'll do great this coming season.
49 Posted 05/06/2010 at 20:56:54
As regards substance... I don't know what more I can do other than tell you I disagree, and then explain why. It must have also caught your attention that you haven't elaborated on your own ideas — you'd rather snipe instead.
Re post 29, slating perfectly straight-forward language before throwing such a movie critic like phrase into the mix, such as "teary-eyed pap", makes you look rather trivial. Need I remind you about the harrowing "Negativity – An Explanation" again?
Yet all this sums up your supercilious attitude perfectly... You don't debate. You make sweeping statements, and assume a faux-haughty superiority, to denigrate those who dissent — without fleshing out your own viewpoint for explanatory purposes, or to counter-argue the point.
These ironically-placed big words must be giving you a headache!!
Jokes aside, I'm happy to debate Everton on friendly terms with you — if we can both dispense with the barbed, personalised crap. It clearly pisses Kenrick off, and I don't blame him. It's time for both of us to rein it in. I'm game... And avoiding Toffeeweb until I get back from RSA.
Have a good summer everyone.
50 Posted 05/06/2010 at 21:51:50
Osman was MotM in both Man Utd and Chelsea victories and was very good at The Emirates too; big matches, Ossie stood up — a fact overlooked by his distractors.
Moyes is probably coming towards the end of his tenure with us, a season or two left in him I think; ambition, treading water etc... We have been good for each other, I think. He has learned his trade, especially in the Premier League; he could guide Wolves or Blackpool into Europe, no problem. (Not us last season, I know... but he was sussed by then.)
I fear for a post-Moyes Blues, and I think all of his detractors should start thinking about who will be next? And where will we end up?
51 Posted 05/06/2010 at 22:48:38
1. Neville or Coleman? [Coleman]
2. Jags or Heitinga? [Jags]
3. Fellaini or Rodwell? [Rodwell]
4. Cahill — alongside the frontman or on the bench? [50/50]
5. Bily — speed course or back to the Russian front? [Russia]
6. Donovan — back on loan? [No; not quick enough]
7. Subs — before 70 mins? [obviously]
8. Generally, more trust in youth and a more attacking philosophy??? [No chance!!!]
52 Posted 06/06/2010 at 12:51:06
If we sold all or any of Pienaar, Jags, Arteta, Fellaini etc I believe we could survive, improve and remain competitive. If we lost Moyes we would go on a downward slide.
We are about level with Blackburn, more fans but finacially (that's all that matters) we are about level with them. The difference... Moyes.
53 Posted 07/06/2010 at 10:48:18
To say Arteta is a winger is wrong. Moyes put him there to get used to the Prem. He did with Osman as well. He just connects the team together with him there. Man Utd and Arsenal have been linked with him, even as a potential replacement for Fabregas, and it doesn't surprise me because he is that good.
He's done some genius buys. We all know that and I ain't gonna list them. Yeah Moyes has his frustrations - tactical inadequacies, substitutions etc. But fact is he was the main responsibility for us being a regular top 8 side now we'll call it. Isnt it good that we can match Villa, City, Spurs and Liverpool despite having no money?
That's down to the squad and the manager. Simple as.
54 Posted 07/06/2010 at 13:26:04
Yes - he's been conservative in the past but there's a massive argument to say he's had to be. I think you'll see him take more risks this season and try to take the game to the rest of the league.
It's no secret that he wants the Man Utd job and it's going to be up for grabs pretty soon too.
Moyes knows that this season / next at the most is his time to deliver — and deliver playing good football and winning something.
He might not make it but, trust me, hang on to your seats over the next two seasons because I think he's going for it — big time.
This is his time.
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