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An Underperforming Squad

By Chris Butler :  26/08/2010 :  Comments (63) :
Over the recent few weeks, Everton supporters have gone back to our spiritual home ? a world of pessimism and hopelessness.

I was one of the few people on this site who thought that Everton needed to make more signings rather than this bollocks of ?I?d be happy if the transfer window ended tomorrow?. It seems to me we could end up with exactly the same problem that we?ve had for the last 3 seasons that we start late then right at the end of the season we wither and become tired.

For the last 3 seasons, contrary to many people?s beliefs, I believe we?ve underachieved. In 2007-08 Everton had an excellent chance to finish 4th but unfortunately, due to losing 2 important games against Liverpool and poor refereeing decisions, our challenge fizzled out.

In 2008-09 many supporters would have said that we had a successful season; again, I believe that, if we hadn?t wasted so many opportunities to win games, challenging a poor Arsenal team we?d've had a decent chance.

The 2009-10 season was dominated by unfortunate factors such as Destination Kirkby, Lescott and our injury list. I believe that, despite all our injuries, we still underachieved and I didn?t blame our finish on early home games against Wolves and Stoke but on four key games:

  1. The first game was the away game against Liverpool. Everton were rejuvenated by the recent return of many of our long-term injuries and we were playing a poor Liverpool team and for once Everton supporters believed we had a chance but we were to be wrong: because of useless tactics and poor goalkeeping, we lost.
  2. Then we engineered rousing victories against Chelsea and Manchester United only to be outdone by two defeats against Spurs and Sporting Lisbon where, in both games, we should have done far better.
  3. Then we beat Hull 5-1, which flattered Hull, only to then mess it up against Birmingham after losing a 2-0 lead when we were cruising the game.
  4. Then we beat both Bolton and Manchester City and us the deluded supporters thought we?d learnt from our mistakes; oh how wrong we were...
If we could've beaten Wolves then, with our upcoming fixtures, we would have a far easier run in than our closest rivals. Again we play well but ultimately lose points. These games are emblematic of Everton under Moyes. We are hard to beat, we make life difficult for the opposition but we just don?t have the class to beat teams.

Everton are a decent team and we had the chance to build off our good from towards the end of last season by strengthening the team; instead, we keep to the same unsuccessful rigid tactics. Our views that Arteta is a genius Osman is shite ramblings after most matches are irrelevant of what happened on the pitch and suggest that, like Moyes, we accept that players will consistently under perform.

In my opinion, this transfer window, Everton had the chance to rid the club of certain players and bring in some real quality. Now, I accept many of you will disagree with me but I think we should've sold quite a few of our players:

  1. Pienaar to me still looks gutted that he never got his move but nevertheless we?re stuck with him.
  2. Despite Bily?s wonder goals he still seems to disappear in games with his fellow phantoms Saha and Cahill.
  3. Fellaini is a miserable bastard who seems to be constantly in a mood, even when he scores.
  4. Arteta is a player I quite like but has never been the same since his injury.
  5. Now I get to the antichrist that is Leon Osman. Leon Osman is a decent enough player and can be an excellent player on his day but too often he seems to not really know what he?s doing and seems to run away from the ball in most games.
  6. Either way the jury will remain how long can Everton keep our so-called greatest team since the 80s.

    Reader Comments

    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

    Michael Kenrick
    1   Posted 26/08/2010 at 14:59:32

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    What a very strange post, Chris. You may have a point about under-achievement ? that's certainly been a drum I have beaten long and hard on here ? but to suggest that we get rid of the core of our best current and likely future players is simply certifiable madness.

    It takes time to get players to gel together into a team... well certainly under Moyes anyway. Some other managers seem to make a quicker job of it, but I'm sure that's because they are not hamstring by his negative ultra-cautious demeanour. Yet you would have him rip apart the culmination of his best work to date?

    At least you don't go to the next logical stage of this nonsense and list a host of great non-Everton players you would have bought in in their places. Mind you, that would have given us a good laugh.

    I try not to be the first on a thread but I felt I could not let such a ludicrous article through without passing comment. Putting any of the players you list ? aye, even Osman ? on the transfer list back in July would have gone against everything Moyes has been trying to do here these past 8½ years.

    In fact, I would go as far as to agree with the message coming out of the club: we have a great squad of players and we don't need to make any more signings. We just need the manager to utilize them in the right way, and to inspire them with the confidence and self-belief to produce ? in EVERY game ? not just against League One opposition.
    David Thomas
    2   Posted 26/08/2010 at 15:19:56

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    Can someone please confirm I have actually just read that Chris thinks we should have sold Arteta and Fellaini this summer in order to progress? I must need to make a trip to the optician because no-one in their right mind would actually suggest selling those two players... would they?
    Trevor Lynes
    3   Posted 26/08/2010 at 15:22:34

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    Speaking of poor ref decisions and injury bad luck etc etc... does not take into account the fact that we have experienced GOOD luck in some games and the seasons placing at the end is a fair indication of a teams position... I do agree that we have under achieved but I put that down to under investment, having a small squad and never being fully prepared at the start of EVERY season.

    At least we are not thinking of survival so much as we used to, but we are still unable to compete 'moneywise' with half the sides in the premier.

    The investment that BK is searching for is still a figment of most supporters imagination and a useful way to explain our lack of transfer funds.... I don't fully accept that we are as 'broke' as some people readily take as a reason... we found money for Fellaini at the 11th hour when a fans revolt was in the offing and our bench was like a nursery.

    Now we are seemingly in a better position BK has shelved any spending of money as the uprising has subsided for the time being.

    DM now has a better contract deal and toes the party line!!!!

    He has the safest managerial post in the league... no ambition so no blame!!

    Kevin Hudson
    4   Posted 26/08/2010 at 15:53:15

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    Yet another weird Chris Butler article. Far to many to be a coincidence,by now..

    "Sell Fellaini."

    Aye okay..

    Who to Chris..?

    Liverpool, perhaps?
    Chris Rudd
    5   Posted 26/08/2010 at 15:44:55

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    Trevor - Surely the money we 'found' for Fellaini came from the sales of McFadden and Johnson. I don't understand people's refusal to believe we haven't got a vessel to urinate in. What we have got though, is a more than decent squad which, admittedly has taken too long to assemble, but means we now have a strong bench every week which is crucial in altering the course of Premier League games. If our manager would come out of his shell and show some nuts a bit more often we may yet see some silverware.

    Personally, I think the idea of selling Arteta, Fellaini and the (according to Chris Butler) 'phantom' Cahill - that'll be the fifty odd goal, first player since W.R.Dean to score in 3 Merseyside Derbys phantom then - and starting the team building process all over again is nigh on insane. Give them a chance and this squad can make us proud again.

    I don't know about Felllaini being miserable Chris, but pot, kettle, black?
    Tony J Williams
    6   Posted 26/08/2010 at 16:58:42

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    You can tell it's a wind up when the poster suggests we sell Fellaini because he looks miserable. Good one.
    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    7   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:01:41

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    I think on reflection you call it right, Kevin.

    We have a pretty open policy to publishing stuff from anyone who appears to be an Evertonian and who has the basic ability to convey some kind of half-reasonable delivery of their views by the written word.

    But to me, Chris is something else. I'm not quite sure what, but I don't agree at all with Tony ? he's not a wind-up; if you look back over his contributions to this site, the above is entirely consistent... and yet still bizarre.

    By our own policy, we should respect diverse views... but this stuff from Chris Butler is too wacky by far. We probably should not publish it; to be brutally honest, I don't think it would be any great loss.
    Chris Butler
    8   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:01:03

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    Nowhere in the article did I say that we should sell those players. I was merely pointing out I believe that could do a hell of a lot better in games. Many contributors on this site seem only to happy to blame Neville yet seem to ignore when one of our more talented players plays badly, contributors seem to ignore it. All I was saying was that certain players seem to be exempt from critcism.
    Michael Kenrick
    9   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:08:35

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    Actually no... re-reading Kevin at #4 ? you are accusing him of being a kopite!?! [Dunno how I missed that first time!]

    No, I won't have that. He's a whack-job ? I think he has demonstrated that only too well ? but there is no indication that he is a kopite... far from it, in fact.

    That's poor from you, Kevin. Calling fellow Evertonians 'kopites' is one thing I will not tolerate, no matter how fucked up they are. You get away with it this time coz you did it so cleverly!
    Albert Perkins
    10   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:37:00

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    Look, we're all getting a bit edgy. With good reason.
    We are frustrated and disappointed at the poor start.
    I threw my bagel across the kitchen on Saturday watching online.
    Let's all take three deep breaths......................................

    .................. and beat the shit out of Villa on Sunday!
    Charles King
    11   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:23:31

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    "I was one of the few people on this site who thought that Everton needed to make more signings rather than this bollocks of ?I?d be happy if the transfer window ended tomorrow?.

    Genuine enough for me.

    The Fellaini stuff a bit off the wall in my opinion, but the other stuff has certainly been voiced by others.
    We're a broad church can't see why Chris is being called.
    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    12   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:53:32

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    Chris in OP: "I think we should've sold quite a few of our players:"

    Chris in #8: "Nowhere in the article did I say that we should sell those players."

    Chris, you are showing signs of serious mental fucked-up-ness... get a fucking grip, lad, or I will pull the plug.
    Tony McNulty
    13   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:54:59

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    I guess all of us feel frustrated about how things have started this season.

    It is beyond me how the Board can expect miraculous improvements year on year from our the manager, when rival managers get to spend significant sums on improving their squads. However, we are where we are, so, setting aside the vexed question of money, what?s the problem?

    I wonder whether our inconsistent performances might be owing to a lack of adaptabilty. We seem unable to change our approach or tactics when other teams set out their stall to frustrate us, or, for whatever reason, our Plan A isn?t working. Has the ?Kirby approach? trickled down onto the field, i.e. there?s no Plan B.
    John Daley
    14   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:43:24

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    "Nowhere in the article did I say we should sell those players."

    Err, yes you did. You say "we should've sold quite a few of our players: .." and go on to name Pienaar, Bilyagethimoff, Fellaini, Arteta and Osman.

    Do you sleep write or something? Maybe get taken over by some malevolent, maniacal, spirit who proceeds to post crackpot suggestions in your name? Then wake up totally oblivious to the wacky shit you've just written
    Andy Crooks
    15   Posted 26/08/2010 at 17:52:32

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    Chris is a dissenter and I have mixed views over his post but he is no kopite. He does, though make some pertinent points. I disagree re Arteta, however. He is out of form at the moment but he is the best player at the club and will show it soon. When he does we will move up the table.
    Chris Butler
    16   Posted 26/08/2010 at 18:02:40

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    Michael, I didn't say we should sell our best players. I was meaning the likes of Yobo, who Moyes has no faith in, and the fact it took us years to get rid of Pistone and bloody Van Der Meyde.

    Now going back to lunatic mode ? is it lunacy to suggest that we maybe try and sell Yakubu and Yobo to fund the signing of a quality player after yesterday's comments by Kenwright?

    Kevin Hudson
    17   Posted 26/08/2010 at 18:02:24

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    Fair tackle, Michael...

    "Kopite," jibe duly retracted!!

    I may be over-sensitive (and happy to be corrected) but it seems he has referenced Liverpool in a number of posts/articles in the past; however my nagging feeling won't stand up in court, so apologies to Chris for the sheer indignity of being labelled "Kopite!"
    John Daley
    18   Posted 26/08/2010 at 18:08:59

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    You include Arteta in your 'should of sold' list because he "has never been the same since his injury". I can't help but notice that Yakubu's name is missing from said list though. He's been absolutely flying, and producing the form of his life since returning from his injury hasn't he?
    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    19   Posted 26/08/2010 at 18:20:41

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    Kevin, nice step back!

    In my limited experience, there are Evertonians who hate Liverpool with the required degree of passion, but who can't help pointing to them in areas where they are perceived to be better than us. My sense is that's all Chris is guilty of there; I tend to agree with your view, though: an over-preoccupation with Liverpool is definitely unhealthy. But we're straying off topic a bit.

    As is Chris. God, it's like herding cats!

    Chris, you clearly said "I think we should have sold quite a few of our players" and then you went on to list most of our best players. Then you denied it... That, lad, is the path to lunacy... no, it suggests you're already there.

    Then you come back claiming you were actually talking about Yobo!!! And then you throw in Yakubu for good measure.... Un-fucking-believable!

    Now, I'm well known for my Job-like patience (!) but you are seriously trying it on. The "sleep-writer" tag is starting to look like the best bet in town...
    Kevin Hudson
    20   Posted 26/08/2010 at 18:19:05

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    Oh come on, Chris...

    NOWHERE in the article do you mention Yobo!

    I'm more than happy to take back the Kopite reference, but you're now re-inventing what you wrote! You are making no sense whatsoever!

    You said we should have sold Pienaar, Bily Fellaini & Arteta!

    But I actually agree with you on Osman...
    Brendan O'Doherty
    21   Posted 26/08/2010 at 20:03:33

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    "I think we should've sold quite a few of our players:"

    NB - note the colon (i.e. by that I mean the following...)

    Then a list -
    Fellaini (the miserable bastard! - even when he scores)

    "I didn't say we should sell our best players. I was meaning the likes of Yobo."

    Sorry Chris but you can't expect people to take you seriously when you just contradict yourself.

    And Fellaini a miserable bastard? What a great reason to sell him!
    Matteo Rosingana
    22   Posted 26/08/2010 at 20:10:08

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    Chris, I take offence that you describe Felliani as 'a miserable bastard'. The guy is serious, yes, and I for one am happy to see a young footballer who is serious about his profession and meek in his approach. I would take this any day over the countless fancy-dans (I have just been watching Cadamateri play for Dundee Utd in Greece tonight) that litter the modern game.
    Stephen Kenny
    23   Posted 26/08/2010 at 21:54:34

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    This consistent utter nonsense is making a mockery of a site like yours.
    David Price
    24   Posted 26/08/2010 at 22:35:18

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    Never saw a smile on Physco Pat's face much either, he even scowled when he scored at Norwich in '87, seemed to cope ok nonetheless.

    Chris, you couldn't have gone more left of field than Ronnie Goodlass or Dave Thomas with those comments.

    Colin Noon
    25   Posted 26/08/2010 at 22:40:33

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    Wow the claws are really out tonight... I was going to throw my opinion into the hat...

    Think I will just back off an leave yous to it :D

    Play nice now, children!
    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    26   Posted 26/08/2010 at 22:43:59

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    Stephen (#23), a bold assertion. One that's probably more worthy of discussion than the Original Post.

    A line has to be drawn somewhere in terms of what we post and what we don't. We do want to maintain a good standard of discussion, yet we are still able to publish at least 99% of what we receive ? which says volumes about all you guys who are providing posts and articles. Mr Butler has demonstrated today that he is probably worthy of inclusion in the 1% rejects pile.

    As for "making a mockery"... come on ? it's one article. I don't see that it impinges in any way on the wealth of material contained elsewhere on this site. Our editorial policy needs to be tested now and again.. and perhaps it failed this time.

    But we shall learn from our mistakes and do better next time!
    Eugene Ruane
    27   Posted 26/08/2010 at 23:25:40

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    I'm guessing now is not the time to send my article 'Fuck off Arteta, you over-rated Spanish twat'.
    Andrew Mackenzie
    28   Posted 26/08/2010 at 23:47:21

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    Usual Chris, usual opinion... so far off mark!! Michael, Is it possible to block certain columnists/mailbags by user names? I think I prefer Bullshit Bill on Sky than this!
    Andrew Mackenzie
    29   Posted 26/08/2010 at 23:47:21

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    Michael: I would be chuffed if you could provide a filter membership approach to ToffeeWeb... ie., no Chris Buttler or Dick!
    Tommy Meehan
    30   Posted 27/08/2010 at 00:09:12

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    Hahaha Eugene, I guess not, unless you subsequently clarify that the intention of your title was to express the fact that you think maybe we should consider selling Phil Neville.
    Peter Stone
    31   Posted 27/08/2010 at 00:10:57

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    Eugene, that made me laugh ? right out loud ? top man!
    Tony McNulty
    32   Posted 27/08/2010 at 00:21:41

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    Do send it, but sign it from a Mr Capello.
    Gaute Lie
    33   Posted 26/08/2010 at 23:20:23

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    Continuty is the word.

    Selling because they don't get an A score every mach is idiotic.

    That is the mistake Liverpool made, and that I believe is the reason they haven't gotten success in the league. Even though they have spent a whole lot of cash, they have bought the wrong team players ? or sold them too early. Chelsea and Man Utd has a steady base of players.
    Afzan Yusuf
    34   Posted 27/08/2010 at 00:54:23

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    I still hope we get that right winger and a better goal scorer... believe me, that right winger will bring the best out of Arteta and the rest of the midfield. With pace, the opposition right back and holding midfielder will be drifted towards the corner flag which left spaces for Osman (ehemm...) to capitalise...
    Still got time... DM and BK... please do what you need to do...
    Afzan Yusuf
    35   Posted 27/08/2010 at 01:25:04

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    Post #32
    Sorry... what I meant was with pace, oppo LEFT back and not right back..."
    It's 8am in Malaysia... what do you expect :)

    James Stewart
    36   Posted 27/08/2010 at 01:52:52

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    Haha, this post is insane. Quite amusing though...
    Matt Traynor
    37   Posted 27/08/2010 at 03:16:03

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    I've found some of his posts bizarre too. There was one a while back which I could read on my mobile, but couldn't access from the main site ? dunno if you decided not to publish it in the end Michael, but somehow the mobile site carried it.
    Dave Wilson
    38   Posted 27/08/2010 at 08:12:11

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    Fucken hell, some of these comments are harsh. If you dont agree with Chris`s post then there are better ways to deal with it than wave imaginary cards at the editor to get him banned.

    From what I can see, the very worst crime Chris is guilty of, is poor presentation of his argument.

    Not everybody has the literate skills sit down and just knock out an article using perfect punctuation, grammar and presentation to get their points across ? trust me on that one.

    It's obvious from his subsequent comments that Chris feels his points have been misunderstood. Having read the article again, I don't believe he does want to sell our best players. The "list" was meant to be a separate issue... and let's be fair here, a lot of what he says is factual.

    This guy watches all the games, he is a passionate Evertonian, passionate enough to take the time out to put these articles together, if his submissions are rejected, fair enough, but he does not deserve the battering he has taken here.

    Stephen Kenny
    39   Posted 27/08/2010 at 10:21:27

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    On reflection maybe I was a bit over the top. It is worth remembering the reason TW gets 50-60 comments per post as opposed to the 4-5 on certain other sites is largely down to your editorial policy and the quality and coherence demanded.
    Amit Vithlani
    40   Posted 27/08/2010 at 11:39:53

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    Michael please back up your assertion on our "underachievement" with some statistics.

    If its trophies you expect us to win with this squad and the money we have spent, please point me in the direction of a source of statistics where we can see how many different PL clubs have won domestic and European honours during DM's reign, and lets assess their NET transfer spend compared to ours.

    If its league placings you think we have underachieved on, do you know a source where we can find statistics showing points per net transfer spend. On such a basis, where do you think should Everton be to "achieve", top 2 or 3?

    Rather than blithely and subjectively banging your drum on underachievement, it would be nice to have some stats to back this up.

    And if "underachievement" is down to a poor style of football, lets see some stats on our completed pass ratio or such like versus other teams, again adjusting for financial investment in the form of net transfer spend.

    Perhaps as Editor of a half decent site this is within your give?
    Paul Olsen
    41   Posted 27/08/2010 at 12:25:57

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    Agreed Amit.
    David Chait
    42   Posted 27/08/2010 at 12:32:06

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    This may be a post that you say should not have been... but it has been one of the most entertaining in ages!!
    Eugene #27 .. cracked me up!!

    Oh and by the way Chris... I refer you to my "Our much Vaunted Midfield" for my take on Fellaini... Lunacy!
    Noel Lynam
    43   Posted 27/08/2010 at 13:16:03

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    A very good point well made Amit. Cat firmly amongst the pigeons!
    Lee Hind
    44   Posted 27/08/2010 at 13:27:54

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    Eugene #27.....brilliant - I do hope that's the first of many articles to complement Chris's...may I suggest further titles for the series:

    Pienaar - Player of the Year My Arse

    Rodwell - Only the Good sold Young

    Osman & Hibbo - The Spine of My Team

    Anichebe - A Banjo and This Cows Arse - My Struggle from 10 yards
    Ciarán McGlone
    45   Posted 27/08/2010 at 13:43:35

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    I'll have a go.

    We underachieve by playing utterly shit football with a good collection of players. It's not something that can be backed up by stats, so I doubt you'll accept it.

    But for me, it's a pretty good indication of underachievement.
    Alan Clarke
    46   Posted 27/08/2010 at 14:00:55

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    How is Fellaini a miserable bastard? Have you seen the guy's hairdo? He is possibly the most hilarious looking player who's ever played for Everton.
    Michael Kenrick
    47   Posted 27/08/2010 at 15:46:03

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    Amit: here's something from within my 'give' [WTF?]:

    What Cairan said. End of.
    Joe Carroll
    48   Posted 27/08/2010 at 15:50:54

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    If you've done one thing worth noting here Chris, it's that you seem to have united many Evertonians on this site who but mere days ago were the picture of pessimism.

    Suddenly, comments and posts seem to be a lot more upbeat... which is fantastic! Well done.

    From where I am, this IS our best squad for 20 odd years, and getting rid of the core is a ridiculous statement.
    Chris Butler
    49   Posted 27/08/2010 at 15:54:24

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    Well at the end of the day undoubtedly all of our opinions are bullshit. As I'll say again I freely admit I do not have lets say the literacy skills or computing skills that some of our posters have. Again my moronic mistake at trying to write an article on my lunch break. But honestly if you are analysing it for words nowhere in the article does it say "Sell the players mentioned."

    Now I fully understand why many people misunderstood my articles as most of them are done in a hurry. Frankly I think that it could be argued about all postings that we can talk, moan, shout, scream about Everton or TW until we get arthiritis but I doubt any of the things we write will ever come into frutition.

    But again if you misunderstood the article, fine, my fault but either way like the devils advocate for a poorly written article seems a bit unjust on a site where other supporters have suggested selling players to fund a stadium.

    Chris Butler
    50   Posted 27/08/2010 at 16:09:18

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    Thanks, Dave, at least one person understood me.

    Stephen Kenny. Ultimately opinions are like arseholes which is the repeated Rhetoric not different to the people who after beating Man United at Wembley started having a rant at James Vaughan. Fortunately for many supporters none of my views like yours are listened to and are again opinions.

    As far as I'm aware, the only other article I've been crucified for was one about the derby when again supporters misunderstood and didn't bother to read the article properly. When I said "The Media blames Everton supporters for singing songs about Gerrards baby and Hillsbrough". I was quoting a Sunday times review on the Merseyside Derby in 2008 not my opinion. But nevetherless despite making this clear supporters still hounded me.

    The other articles I have written were about standing where I felt the majority of people agreed with me. The only other one I have been crucified was for the Do You Trust Moyes? article. Again I'm not the only one who worries about Moyes commitment to Everton, nor his tactics, yet I bore the brunt of the abuse.

    Michael Kenrick
    51   Posted 27/08/2010 at 16:26:51

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    So Chris, here's some advice:

    1) Don't write in a hurry over your lunch hour.

    2) Read it through as if you had never seen it before, and ask yourself "Does this actually make any sense?".

    3) Look up "Devil's Advocate" and make sure you understand what it means before you use it.

    And here's the kicker:

    4) If you think posting your views on here is pointless... DON'T POST!

    James Flynn
    52   Posted 27/08/2010 at 18:21:41

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    Dave Wilson (38) - "there are better ways to deal with it than wave imaginary cards at the editor to get him banned".

    Well-said and good to see you back in here.
    Chris Perry
    53   Posted 27/08/2010 at 19:33:59

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    Where the fuck is Tony Harris when you need him?

    Was he a fake writer that the Eds made up to start a thread?

    Tony Harris, come on in!!!

    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    54   Posted 27/08/2010 at 19:36:32

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    Err... Chris Perry, that would probably be Tony Marsh that you are thinking of, not Tony Harris.

    As to the first question, he posted something minor and non-controversial a few weeks back that went largely unnoticed.

    As to the second.. Why? Why would we need to invent a persona?

    [Perhaps we invented you and you don't really exist at all... how would that make you feel, eh?]
    Tony McNulty
    55   Posted 27/08/2010 at 20:36:09

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    Amazing. You couldn?t have made this thread up.

    My grandad had a pub in Liverpool. The thread reminds me of some of the conversations which used to take place during chucking out time.
    Noel Lynam
    56   Posted 27/08/2010 at 21:56:42

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    "We underachieve by playing utterly shit football with a good collection of players."

    Interesting viewpoint Ciaran and Michael. If this is how you define underachieving, would you consider Inter Milan to have underachieved last year? Perhaps Mourinho's Chelsea? Red Star Belgrade in 1991? Greece in 2004? England in 1990? All undoubtedly "good collections of players" (yes even the Greeks!) but didn't exactly thrill with their football. Yet I don't think any of them underacheieved.

    I don't disagree that our style of play could be better at times but to describe it as "utterly shite" is a stretch. As always on here, it's fascinating to see the broad spectrum of opinions and expectations. Long may it continue!
    Brendan O'Doherty
    57   Posted 27/08/2010 at 22:46:51

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    Especially as we actually over- achieved in recent years given the lack of strength and depth of the squad.

    A view held wide the broad spectrum of commentators and fans of all clubs.
    Brendan O'Doherty
    58   Posted 27/08/2010 at 22:50:56

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    That should read

    A view held widely by the broad spectrum of commentators and fans of all clubs.
    Ciarán McGlone
    59   Posted 27/08/2010 at 23:07:24

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    We know what you meant, Brendan... but in all seriousness, what commentators and fans of other clubs think isn't really here or there - is it?

    They don't watch us religiously. Only we do that. ergo...

    Essentially we've over-acheived in terms of our league placings... but there's a very cogent argument, backed up by recorded visual evidence that we underachieved at playing football.

    To take it to its basic level... I would say that losing to Blackburn as meekly as we did, with our best team in 20 years is a clear indication of underachievement. Wouldn't you?

    It may be transient... [hopefully!] ? but it's still aiming high and hitting low.
    Brendan O'Doherty
    60   Posted 28/08/2010 at 01:06:17

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    Yes I would Ciarán, but that is with the present squad.

    My point about over-achievement, was with squads containing players who were nowhere near as good as we've got now.

    So even though you say "we underachieved at playing football" as opposed to results, we didn't have the players then who could do much more than close the opposition down, be well-organised, and work hard for each other. Then nick a 1-0 lead and try to defend it. And a lot of the time it worked.

    Different times of course, and much more is expected of today's squad.
    Kevin Hudson
    61   Posted 28/08/2010 at 02:20:17

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    If we've essentially over-achieved in terms of league placings, yet under-achieved at playing football ? how can that be?

    Surely the football has to have been effective to achieve the good league position?
    Chris Butler
    62   Posted 28/08/2010 at 21:01:20

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    Micheal, I'll take that advice on board. I was simply pointing out you could get an interview with Rooney saying he'd love to play for Everton and really wanted to sign for us with and him being a free agent but I doubt anyone at our club would bother to read it, mate.

    How long have we been watching Everton to realise that nothing is ever simple? Our views after all don't matter how good or bad they are. I won't be posting in a hurry any time soon but simply I feel that certain posters get abused for their opinions yet, they are exactly that ? opinions.

    I don't really care whether somebody posted for Hibbert to play up front ? it's never going to happen, so I really don't see the point arguing.

    I've given up on our singing area attempts because the club doesn't listen.

    I come on here to read the excellent match reports and to read about the facts and the opinions that you brillaintly put on this site. Because I've given up watching Everton at GP, I like to read about people's truthful opinions on tactics ? not ridiculous transfer rumours or crazy optimism.

    I also think that that there has been plenty of awful articles far more bizarre than mine that seemed to have gone under the radar of supporters. I suggest that certain posters realise our views have no bearing on the club before stigmatising me with the worst insult "A Kopite".

    Michael Kenrick
    Editorial Team
    63   Posted 28/08/2010 at 21:40:28

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    Okay, Chris... good on ya.... but fuck me, you are STILL coming out with shit that is utterly fucking bizzare!!! Take this bit:

    "I was simply pointing out you could get an interview with Rooney saying ... blah, blah."

    WTF? In this entire thread, you have NEVER mentioned Rooney. In this entire thread, you have NEVER talked about getting an interview with anybody!!! What on EARTH is that in reference to???

    See, it's shit like that you throw into every post that just does my head in. Look, the way these threads work is you're supposed to make some point and then bat it around, amplify it, beat it to shreds... pretty much anything goes...

    EXCEPT throwing in new shit that is totally off the wall. That doesn't do anybody any good, but unfortunately, it's classic Chris Butler.

    And you've been going on and on claiming that "our views don't matter", and down-talking the entire idea of thread-based Everton discussion on this website. Sorry, but I don't accept that at all.

    You may not get the results YOU personally have looked for but that's because you've been naieve to the point of it becoming a bit ridiculous ? the whole standing thing is a case in point.

    On that topic, I gave you air ? plenty of it ? to see where it might go, as you seemed so into the whole thing... but I was pretty confident it would go absolutely nowhere. It never stood a chance.

    And now what? After all that effort and bluster, you've given up watching Everton at GP!!! Simply astounding...

    You really are the most bizarre fan who contributes here. You have taken over that mantle from one Richard Dodd... and that's quite an achievement. And yet you think people have misunderstood you and slammed you unjustly? Far from it, Chris, sadly I think all the stuff leveled at you is because of your own failings when presenting points you believe in enough to write in about.

    Yes, you expose yourself to ridicule ? we all do... to the extent that we talk shite. I usually prevent most of the obvious shite from being posted (except my own, of course!); consider yourself lucky or unlucky [delete as appropriate] that the stuff you have written has been posted. It won't be again unless it is pretty much 100% flawless.

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