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ToffeeWeb Season Diary

Season 2009-10

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July 2009

News Headlines & Features

Mucha's Goodison switch now official
No word on length of contract
1 Jul - Jan Mucha is officially an Everton player, completing a free transfer from Legia Warsaw today. The Slovakian international's participation at the World Cup Finals in South Africa ended with his country's 2-1 defeat to The Netherlands earlier this week and he will be allowed an extended break before linking up with the Blues' squad later this month. The announcement on the Official Everton Website, however, contains no indication of how long his new contract will run for.

The People's Club no more?
Trademark battle with fan
31 Jul - That wonderful soundbyte that David Moyes coined has become a second motto for Everton FC as fewer of today's youngsters have even the faintest knowledge of what the Latin one means... But it has been revealed that the Blues do not own the trademark to the phrase after a supporter successfully proved that he was the first to be granted permission to use "The People's Club" on hats and scarves he sold on his market stall. Brian Gould insists he does not want to prevent the club from using the slogan; meanwhile Ian Ross maintains the Club's decision to stop using it "has nothing to do with Mr Gould at all". Hmmm....

Everton make MLS All-Star Game history
MLS All-Stars 3 - 4 Everton (Penalties)
29 Jul - David Moyes has finally won a trophy with his battling Blues boys and it just happens to be the biggest trophy in world Soccer, the massive MLS All-Stars trophy! becoming the first foreign team to beat the MLS All-Star team in this annual fixture. Fittingly, the guy who won it for Everton was US Number One and previous MLS All-Stars himself, keeper Tim Howard. At least three excellent saves in the game saved Everton from certain and fully deserved defeat after Saha scored from a gift back-pass. After Donovan had equalised off a defensive lapse from Lescott et al, Howard went on to save three penalties in the full-time shoot-out that Vaughan started poorly with a horrible effort. But it ended well when Howard saved off Freddie Ljungberg to win it for Everton, and justifiably take the MVP award to boot!

Second City bid for Lescott rejected
29 Jul - Manchester City stepped up the pressure on Everton with a new 18m bid for Joleon Lescott today which the Club have rejected outright according to a statement on the Official Site. With Chelsea's John Terry having committed his future to Stamford Bridge, Mark Hughes is zeroing in on the Blues' central defensive ace but has now seen a 15m offer and now this latest bid turned down flat.

MLS All-Stars v Everton
Match Preview
29 Jul - The BIG game... in a small stadium... in a soccer backwater that is Sandy, Utah (near Salt Lake City), United States of America. That's the venue for this season's MLS All-Stars game against Everton, the prestigious match that will finally answer the question on the lips of all US soccer fans: "Who is Everton?" The game is on live, ESPN2 (in HD!) in the USA, and on EvertonTV in the UK. Kick off 7:30pm MDT (2:30am on Thursday for viewers in the UK).

Yakubu back in full training
Plays in practice match
28 Jul - Everton have been given a major boost as they approach the new season with striker Yakubu at last back in action and kicking a ball around in earnest. The Nigerian has been with the squad on their North American tour primarily to maintain his fitness work and rehabilitation, having not played since November following an Achilles injury. But Yakubu was involved in a practice match ahead of this week's game against a Major League Soccer All-Stars side in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Everton 0 - 1 River Plate
The Edmonton Cup
25 Jul - Everton and River Plate (Argentina) battled it out for the Edmonton Cup in a friendly pre-season fixture set in the Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton, Alberta. Ariel Ortega chipped Carlo Nash to score the only goal superbly. The Blues head back to the US tomorrow to prepare for the match-up with MLS All-Stars.

Moyes looks for defender
injuries causing problems
24 Jul - David Moyes has confirmed he is scouring the transfer market for defensive cover. Moyes is in Seattle with his squad preparing for Sundays prestige friendly against Argentinian giants River Plate which will be played in Edmonton, Canada. But the lack of numbers in his squad is clearly worrying Moyes, who has major injury problems still to be resolved over Mikel Arteta, Ayegbeni Yakubu, Phil Jagielka and Victor Anichebe, none of whom will be fit to start the season.

Sweltering in Seattle
Picture Gallery at Official Website
22 Jul - The Everton squad had their first day of training at the Starfire Sports complex, in the town of Tukwila, south of Seattle, in the state Washington, USA. EvertonTV features pictures and interviews. The weather forecast for the Seattle area is increasing temperatures that could reach 100F by the end of the week, when the squad heads across the border into Canada to contest the Edmonton Cup against River Plate. The match will be shown live on EvertonTV.

Everton squad flies out to Seattle
Yakubu included in 20-man group
20 Jul - The Everton squad left for Seattle this afternoon where they will train before making the hop to Edmonton, Canada for the first of two friendlies they'll play in North America this month. The Blues face River Plate of Argentina on Saturday (early hours of Sunday morning UK time) before going up against MLS All-Stars next Wednesday (early Thursday morning in the UK). As expected, Yakubu makes the trip and he is joined by Joseph Yobo and Steven Pienaar. Dan Gosling is on England U-19 duty.

Rochdale 1 - 4 Everton
Lescott, Fellaini and Neville start
18 Jul - Hibbert, Baines, Lescott, Fellaini, Neville, Cahill, Saha and Jo featured in the team playing at Rochdale today, with only four players listed on the bench, probably because the Reserves were playing Airbus whom they beat 3-2. A brace of goals from Jo, an own-goal and a goal from Shane Duffy made up Everton's tally, with Rochdale converting a penalty kick for their goal.

Everton reject 15m Lescott bid
17 Jul - Everton have confirmed they have rejected a formal offer from Manchester City for Joleon Lescott, reported to be 15m. CEO Robert Elstone reiterated the Club's stance with regard to existing players on the Official Site, saying: "As a club, we have publicly stated as recently as Wednesday night that we do not intend selling any players." Meanwhile, there appears to be confirmation of newspaper reports that the Blues have lost out on Kyle Naughton to Spurs.

Report: City lodge official bid for Lescott
Moyes loses Naughton and Walker to Spurs
17 Jul - Manchester City stepped up their attempts to sign Joleon Lescott yesterday afternoon with an official bid of 15m, The Guardian reports, while Kyle Naughton and Kyle Walker look set to join Tottenham. The offer for Lescott comes a day after David Moyes restated his insistence that none of his first-team players would be sold this summer. Meanwhile, he will be seething at the Naughton situation, having seen his first purchase of the summer slip through his fingers despite having agreed a deal with Sheffield United a week ago.

Everton announce record turnover
15 Jul - Everton CEO Robert Elstone announced a record turnover of almost 80m last season at tonight's Shareholders Forum. The increase from 75.7m last year is due largely to live TV revenue, the Chang sponsorship deal, and last season's run to the FA Cup final. David Moyes also spoke and despite the Club's improved finances, he was typically low-key in regard to transfer activity this summer, suggesting that he would mostly be adding Bosman-style players to pad out the squad. He reiterated, however, that he would not sanction the departure of any of his first-team players.

Everton in ongoing Naughton talks
Club hopeful of landing Blades defender
15 Jul - Reports out of Sheffield yesterday suggesting that Everton were set to resume talks with Kyle Naughton appear to have been correct, with Everton announcing that they are hopeful of making the 20 year-old their latest signing. Bill Kenwright reiterated that a deal has been in place with Sheffield United since Thursday but said, "Things are ongoing, he hasn't had his medical and he's not an Everton player yet." That might suggest that the Blues have declined to match Tottenham's bid for the youngster and his teenage teammate Kyle Walker who may yet end up at White Hart Lane if Naughton signs on at Goodison.

Everton won't be held to ransom
Moyes furious as Naughton likely to end up at Spurs
14 Jul - Everton will not be drawn into a bidding war with Tottenham over fullback Kyle Naughton and, unless the player himself insists on a move to Goodison, it looks as though David Moyes will miss out on his first purchase of the summer. The Club are said to be angry at Sheffield United's apparent abandonment of the deal agreed on Friday in favour of a combined sale of Naughton and Kyle Walker to Spurs for 8m which would see the latter return to Bramall Lane on loan next season. Update: The Sheffield Star reports that fresh negotiations with the player's representatives were scheduled for this afternoon, while Sky Sports claim the Blues have matched Tottenham's bid for the two Kyles.

Everton face competition for Naughton
Have Tottenham gazumped Moyes for defender?
13 Jul - Everton's hopes of landing Kyle Naughton may rest on the player himself or, if reports in the Echo are correct, success in a bidding war with Tottenham Hotspur. The Blues agreed a fee with Sheffield United on Friday but Spurs have come in with a late bid, though the player himself, who was due on Merseyside today to discuss personal terms, is believed to favour a switch to Goodison. The Echo, however, claim that Spurs' offer is higher and the Blades are refusing to discuss the matter any further with Everton or allow Naughton to undergo a planned medical as a result. Aston Villa, who seem to be ever-present in the Blues' transfer links this summer, are also thought to be interested.

Everton have Naughton bid accepted
J loan deal also confirmed
10 Jul - Everton have had a bid for highly-rated fullback Kyle Naughton accepted by Sheffield United. David Moyes was rebuffed earlier this summer with a bid believed to entail 3.5m up front but now the Blades' international chairman, Terry Robinson, confirms: "We have accepted a bid for Kyle...but nothing has been agreed with the player. We won't be revealing the amount until any deal is done." The fee is believed to be 6m, most likely comprising an up-front fee and the rest dependent on appearances. The Blues have also announced that the loan capture of J has been completed, the Brazilian returning for another year.

Opening game on ESPN
9 Jul - Everton's opening game of the new season, at home to Arsenal, has been moved to 5:15pm on Saturday 15 August and will be the first game to be delivered domestically by the American and worldwide sportscasting giant, ESPN. Everton are not scheduled for ESPN again until their Old Trafford date in November but they are listed for three live appearances on Sky Sports, at Fulham and Portsmouth in September, and for the Goodison derby in November.

J loan return on hold?
Confirmation of Brazilian's return withdrawn
7 Jul - Everton appeared to have completed negotiations for the return of striker J on a season-long loan after Manchester City confirmed the deal on their official website this afternoon. The story was subsequently withdrawn, however, replaced by one merely confirming rumours yesterday that the Brazilian joined the Blues' squad on their four-day training camp in Scotland this week.

J set for Everton return
Club confirms talks with Manchester City
7 Jul - Everton have confirmed that negotiations are underway for the return of striker J on a season-long loan with a view to a permanent move next year. As rumoured yesterday, the Brazilian joined the Blues' squad on their four-day training camp in Scotland. "We have had a conversation with Manchester City over the options available to us and discussions are set to continue," said Everton CEO, Robert Elstone.

Yakubu confident of making big kick-off
Nigerian's recovery going well
4 Jul - Speaking at the opening of Everton Two in Liverpool One yesterday, Yakubu described his frustration at not being able to kick a ball for seven months but expressed his confidence at being fit for the new season. "I am just so pleased to be back, to start training again and kicking a ball again," he said. "The training has been good, there has been no reaction or pain. Hopefully I will be back to join the team in pre-season."

Everton Two Grand Opening
Moyes cuts the ribbon on new store
2 Jul - The brand new Everton Two store at Liverpool One had its official opening ceremony today with manager David Moyes as the very special guest who cut the ribbon to mark the event. Created with retail partner Kitbag Ltd and fitted out by The Maxim Group, the new store boasts a massive product range, completely bespoke fittings, stunning visuals, unique memorabilia displays and top level staff, managed by Everton fan Simon Gibson.

Shareholders Forum set for 15 July
1 Jul - Everton have arranged a Shareholders Forum in The Marquee at Goodison Park on Wednesday 15 July 2009, commencing at 7.00pm. The Club have conveniently seized upon the terms of the Companies Act 2006, which stipulate that it is no longer a requirement for a private limited company to hold an Annual General Meeting, to avoid the kind of contentious votes and supporter-driven motions from some shareholders over the controversial Destination Kirkby project that have dominated recent meetings. Nevertheless, the Board of Directors are still keen to "consider and understand the views of its Shareholders," and invite Shareholders to confirm their attendance by 10th July. No proxies will be permitted.


Snippets & Rumours

Everton win Milk Cup again
31 Jul - Hallam Hope scored two and Chris Long and Anton Forrester one each as Everton beat Watford 4-1 in the Junior Section of Northern Ireland's Milk Cup youth tournament. Hope opened the scoring after four minutes and Long and Hope added further goals to make it 3-0 at half-time. Forrester then got on the scoresheet and Oliver Sprague pulled one back for Watford.

Saha opts for preferred No 8 jersey
30 Jul - The departure of Segundo Castillo has opened up Louis Saha's preferred No 8 jersey and the Frenchman, who has a special affinity with that number, not least because his birthday is 8th August, has chosen to switch from the famous Everton No 9 to No 8 for next season. Dan Gosling takes No 19 and Seamus Coleman No 31.

Neville slams persitent City
30 Jul - Phil Neville thinks Manchester City should get the message and back off from their quest to usettle and sign up Joleon Lescott.

Pienaar contract talks proceed
28 Jul - Steven Pienaar has spoken to diffuse the impression that he has somehow "snubbed" Everton, insisting that he (more likely his agent) is still in talks on a new contract, and is hopeful of a positive outcome. "It is seldom that both parties come to an agreement at the first attempt," he said.

MLS All-Stars game on ESPN2
27 Jul - Everton's second and final game on their 2009 North American tour is on Wednesday evening against the MLS All-Stars in Sandy, Utah. The game will be broadcast live in the USA on ESPN2 in HD; coverage starts at 6:30pm PDT/9:30pm EDT. In the UK, that translates to 2:30am on Thursday morning, when it should be viewable on EvertonTV.

Tim loves being a Blue
27 Jul - Tim Howard reinstates how much he loves playing for Everton and how he has come to realise how rich our history is.

Dan Gosling scores for England
26 Jul - Dan Gosling got amongst the goals in England's 2-2 draw qith the Ukraine, in th sEuropean Under-19 Championships.

Ruddy joins Motherwell on loan
24 Jul - Everton Reserve goalkeeper, John Ruddy, has gone out on loan to Motherwell in the Scottish Premier League until January 2010.

Reserves off to Austria
24 Jul - Everton Reserves are heading to Obertraun, Austria for a five-day training camp and a friendly against German side 1860 Munich on Thursday.

Cody Arnoux joins Everton
24 Jul - Another very promising American college player, Cody Arnoux, has joined Everton. He has forgone his final year in college after scoring lots of goals for Wake Forest and Carolina Dynamo.

Fox signs for Celtic
24 Jul - Danny Fox, previously of the Everton Youth Academy, has signed a four-year contract with Celtic after impressing with Coventry City since he joined them in January 2008 from Walsall.

Lawrie on trial
24 Jul - Everton have invited 18-year-old James Lawrie, a Northern Ireland International currently with Port Vale, to train with the club for a week.

Kyles sign for Spurs
23 Jul - Sheffield United's website now confirms that Kyle Naughton and Kyle Walker have both signed for Spurs, bringing to an end the first transfer saga of the summer silly season. Comments are still open on Simon Bodian's ToffeeWeb article.

Doom and Gloom from Big Nev
22 Jul - Neville Southall warns that Everton will slip down the Premier League table under pressure from their big-spending rivals unless they get the investment that Bill Kenwright has been searching for ("24/7"?)...

Baines pleased by Lescott reaction
19 Jul - Leighton Baines says that he is pleased that Everton have rejected Manchester City's approach for Joleon Lescott and lauds his fellow defender for apparently being unfazed by the overtures from Eastlands.

Bored Bill bites back
18 Jul - A rather more illuminating account of last week's Shareholder's Forum appears on the KEIOC website, and includes Bill Kenwright getting rather bored with a shareholder's question.

A slap in the face for CD Everton
15 Jul - Speaking at this evening's Shareholders Forum, Robert Elstone remarked that while Everton Chile, reigning Champions of their league, were considered as pre-season opponents to commemorate their centenary year, the decision ultimately came down to "quality of the opposition". The Blues' curtain-raiser at Goodison next month is against those giants of Spanish football, Malaga...

Shareholders Forum
15 Jul - Everton are holding a Shareholders Forum tonight in lieu of a proper AGM. Since there is no business being transacted, there is no need for those pesky proxies, who have been suspected of asking too many pointed questions in previous general meetings of the club. It starts at 7pm in the Marquee and the Official Site are running live text updates of the discussions.

Odds are stacked against Everton
15 Jul - No foreign side has managed to beat the MLS All-Stars in the United States' annual All-Star game and looking at the home team's 2009 line-up (which includes the likes of Freddie Ljungberg and Landon Donovan), The Bleacher Report don't think Everton have much hope of making history this year either. Sounds like a challenge...

Yak and Arteta ease back into training
14 Jul - Recovering Everton duo, Mikel Arteta and Yakubu, have been engaging in some light training at Finch Farm this past week as they prepare to resume full training in the coming weeks. Neither are expected to make the season opener against Arsenal but the Yak could play some part in the Blues' trip to North America this month.

Watch the Rochdale friendly live
13 Jul - Everton have announced that subscribers of EvertonTV can watch the Blues' friendly at Rochdale live on the Internet this Saturday. If you're not already signed up, you can subscribe here.

McCready signs for Hibs
12 Jul - Hibs have picked up Tom McCready, who was one of the young players released last month after coming up through the Everton Academy. McCready made only one sub appearance for Everton Reserves last season.

Bury 2 - 1 Everton
10 Jul - A mostly junior line-up of Reserves and Academy players appeared at Gigg Lane for the first of this summer's pre-season jaunts this evening. Two goals in the second half were more than the Everton second string could handle after more than half the team were swapped out at half-time, Louis Saha having given the Blues a first-half lead. New signings Shokdran Mustafi and Anton Peterlin played in the second half, along with J, his one-year loan confirmed.

Bates demands compensation for Garbutt
10 Jul - Leeds United chairman, Ken Bates, is demanding action from the Premier League and Football League as he believes that Everton "poached" teenage prospect Luke Garbutt from his club. "We are determined to be adequately compensated for the work we are doing in our academy," the outspoken Elland Road supremo says.

Mustafi officially comes on board
7 Jul - The acquisition of defender Shkodran Mustafi is officially a done deal after Everton announced that formalities were complete on the 17-year-old's move from SV Hamburg.

Agard pens contract extension
6 Jul - Everton Academy striker Keiran Agard has signed a two-year extension to his current contract as he looks to make the breakthrough in the first-team. The 19-year-old was the Reserves' player of the season last term.

Garbutt joins Academy Graduates
3 Jul - The latest batch of Everton Academy graduates to secure full-time professional contracts with the club have been announced: Adam Cummins, Jake Bidwell, Connor Roberts, Luke Dobie, Tom Donegan, Zac Thompson, Ryan Watson, Femi Orenugu, and Daniel Murphy, along with Luke Garbutt, who joined the club from Leeds United.

Pre-season to kick off at Bury
1 Jul - Everton have announced a pre-season friendly against Bury on 10th July that will mark the beginning of the Shakers' 125th Anniversary celebrations. Kick off is scheduled for 7:45pm.

Rodwell sings Moyes's praises
1 Jul - In what hopefully signals the youngster's intentions to shrug off reported interest from Manchester United, Jack Rodwell describes his manager, David Moyes as "amazing" and "a great gaffer to have. He puts his trust and faith into the youngsters."

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