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Dire Davie

By Carly Scott :  28/12/2010 :  Comments (20) :

I've posted before in defence of David Moyes and I'm certainly not going to join those who claim we'd be better off without him. But tonight's game, for me, shows just why those who are so frustrated with him feel that way.

I vividly remember going to watch what I think was dour Walter's last league game in charge: a dire 1-0 defeat at Upton Park in 2002. If memory serves me correctly we played a 4-6-0 formation in effect, with David bloody Ginola as the 'workhorse' lone frontman and a parade of immobile centre-halves in midfield. I thought those grim days were over after Walter left, and thanked God for that. How wrong I was.

Moyes' approach to the game last night shows exactly why - despite his obvious successes since his appointment - he still attracts hefty criticism from these parts. No doubt there'll be general bafflement among sports writers and other club's fans, but the West Ham game infuriated me. I'm sure it did some of you too.

West Ham went into last night's game off the back of a decent win at Fulham, but hardly brimming with confidence. They have, by all accounts, had a pretty shocking season and were second bottom going into the game.

So with all that taken into account, why did Moyes take such an unremittingly negative approach? Cahill might have scored nine this season, but why oh why wasn't this a chance for Beckford (or, if you don't like him, choose from any of our host of centre forwards) to show us what he's got against a team that's seemingly there for the taking? No. Instead it's the absurd safety first approach yet again against a team that's virtually bottom of the league.

Cahill's threat was neutered as the last man, and we had no pace whatsoever to threaten their back line with for nigh on 65 minutes.

I don't know what you lot think, but for me this was Moyes at his worst. Setting up cautiously against a team with brittle self-belief, watching them go 1-0 up, allowing the confidence to trickle back through their side and then do sod all until, as always, the 65th minute before even considering making a change. When he did he went for the one striker we have who looks permanently disinterested and seemed to be agitating for a move to West Ham in the summer. Oh, and then we have the token Beckford substitution for a couple of minutes at the end. Unambitious, yes. Remorselessly negative, yes. Uninspiring, yes. And saddest of all, totally and utterly predictable. It makes me so angry.

Bar Smith, I can't think of any Everton manager in the last 30 years who would have set up his team so negatively against a side near bottom of the table. No wonder people are voting with their feet.

Coleman's goal, in a sad way, just made me even more frustrated as it just served to mask the issue. It allowed Moyes to do what he always does at halftime - nothing - and pretend there wasn't an problem..

I'd like you all just to close your eyes for a moment and imagine us up against a bottom three side some time in the future, where we take the game to them, with two centre forwards and a sensible attacking philosophy which balances keeping it tight but with coupled with real offensive flair, a la Spurs vs Villa the other night. Nice, isn't it?

Anyway, rant over.

Reader Comments

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Tony Hughes
1   Posted 28/12/2010 at 19:40:17

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Can``t disagree with a single thing you say carly, sad isnt it that there are so many misguided fools amongst our support who see no wrong in this dour negative man!
Leon Perrin
2   Posted 28/12/2010 at 19:36:38

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It's Davey's way.
I've lost all faith in him, this is Everton Moyes style its like watching basket weaving without the drama.
Mike Bates
3   Posted 28/12/2010 at 19:43:27

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Carly, I siad exactly the same thing about Coleman's goal.

My favourite part of watching it was Alan Smith stating that our attack minded bench was showing David Moyes' attacking intent. I laughed my head off at that.
Denis Richardson
4   Posted 28/12/2010 at 19:44:52

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Spot on - spineless from the manager.

We had no less than FOUR strikers on the bench FFS. Whats he going to do when Cahill goes in Jan, play 10-0-0?

Have nothing against negative tactics against top sides (i.e. City game) but its simply not acceptable to use these tactics against teams in the frigging relegation zone and with zero confidence.

For all you DM supporters out there (I use to be one, stopped about 2 years ago), please explain these tactics and how they are supposed to take our club forward?

Whats the point in having strikers if you're not going to use them?
Ray Robinson
5   Posted 28/12/2010 at 19:59:29

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Mike #3, you weren't the only one laughing at that remark from Alan Smith, whom I generally respect, by the way. And Carly, can't disagree with your observations ? Moyes at his negative worst. Three right backs on the field and no forwards.

The performance confirmed a few truths: Cahill can't play up front on his own, Arteta is playing too deep (the goal came from one of the few times he ventured forwards), Hibbert is crap as a centre-back, Moyes has no idea with substitutions... and many more besides.

Quite frankly, I'm getting so frustrated with it all, I'm beginning to lose interest.
Al Reddish
6   Posted 28/12/2010 at 20:23:12

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Dennis, I consider myself a Moyes supporter, mainly as I feel he has been let down by Kenwright. However, I can't defend him at all after today's game.

We were weak in attack again. No pace going forward. Arteta should prove his worth in the reserves till he is back to his best and the play is always one-dimensional. It's at times pretty but also pretty ineffective.

Moyes got it horribly wrong today but sadly it is a re-occurring theme. The players out there just ain't doing it so give Bily or Beckford 5 or 6 games to show us what they can do... and not as injury-time subs.

Joe McMahon
7   Posted 28/12/2010 at 20:50:22

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Carly, I agree with every single word. I'm embarresd and even ashamed to be a supporter of such an awful negative side to watch. 4 wins from 19 games, no money, and dump of a wooden stadium, and I look at where Spurs are now. Not long ago we were level pegging with them. But i's not all about money, I'm sure Coyle of Holloway would rather die than employ our tactics.
Richard Dodd
8   Posted 28/12/2010 at 20:52:00

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Fact is we played it tight and managed to nick one. Problem was Hibbert spoilt the plan!

Now for a stunning second half to the season.

Tony Hughes
9   Posted 28/12/2010 at 21:03:01

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FFS, Richard Dodd, where do you get off with your endless piss-taking?
Dick Fearon
10   Posted 28/12/2010 at 22:10:10

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To get within sight of sixth place we badly needed a win against relegation doomed West Ham. In a classic Moyes style our tactically inept manager opted for a draw and not play with a centre forward.

It was enough to make grown men weep tears of frustration. The pathetic wimp is badly in need of a backbone implant.

Jay Harris
11   Posted 28/12/2010 at 22:23:48

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Unfortunately I feel we'd be lost without David Moyes.

But at this time I think we are lost with him.

His team selections are bizarre to say the least.

Tim Cahill is going off for 6 weeks shortly so IMO another striker needs some game time so the answer is play Cahill on his own.

Our MF was beginning to show some cohesion lately with Rodwell and Fellaini in the centre so the answer is let's accommodate Mikky who has been shite all season and disrupt the Rodwell Fellaini partnership and cause total confusion in the middle of the park (too many cooks spoil the broth and all that) so they can all pass it about to each other sideways because there's nobody up front to pass it to.

And who were we playing Real Madrid? No fucking West Ham.

Rant over and according to the representative of the Maghull Mental Institute we should be grateful for a point.

Doddy NSNO used to mean something.
John Ford
12   Posted 29/12/2010 at 00:11:36

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I'm a Moyes supporter, mainly because top English soccer is pretty much impossible without cash and Moyes has done good things whilst being handicapped by Kenwright. However, the case for the defence is just non-existent tonight.

I really hope January will produce something to inspire us in the market. Moyes will need to be creative and take a few risks... not his natural approach.

Bob Parrington
13   Posted 29/12/2010 at 01:15:50

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This was a crap performance, wasn't it? From the moment the manager named the team it was likely to be bad but who would have expected it to be so bad?

Worst of all was the seeming lack of desire to win. I commented to my sons that it looked like we were out for a lazy day training game. Maybe it's time to off-load some players and use whatever we can get for them to bring in some new talent. But, before that is done, perhaps we should split up the Moyes/Round defender coaching partnership. My vote would go to off-loading Steve Round. We seem to have gone down and down and down hill since he came.

Back to players to off-load ? perhaps we look at the likes of Yak, Billy, Saha for starters. Dare I say it? Mikky doesn't look the slightest bit happy. Maybe he needs a change!?

Distin as MotM. Fellaini steady and commanding. Bainsey good but left exposed at the back a few times. Coleman had a reasonable game, took the goal well but frequently let himself down with his first touch (sooner have him on the pitch though)

Cahill had a bad game and Yak did nothing when he came on. Peanuts had a very ordinary day.

Personally, I would have liked to see Beckford get a start in this game. It was against the 19th in the league!
Col Noon
14   Posted 29/12/2010 at 01:53:36

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Doddy, I was looking forward to your response to this negative tripe that we witnessed tonight. And with unearing consistency you deliver ? unlike our toothless team of "nearly men".

This depressing, one dimensional garbage that we have endured this season has become unbearable. Moyes has to be the most stubborn man I have ever witnessed. Why on god's green earth will he by no means deviate from this dour, negative system of playing [ahem] "football"?

The signs were all too apperant when Cahill was to plough a lone forrow up front. That is fine IF... we have no other options, but to have THREE strikers on the bench is nothing short of criminal in my eyes. Fellaini did well in parts and Distin was solid but apart from that the performance was flat and once again our play was predicatable and incredibley laboured. Did Beckford even touch the ball? Did he even get enough time on the pitch to do so?

This was utter shite, and I challenge anyone (not Doddy, when I say "anyone" I do mean anyone with a resonable degree of sanity) to defend this horror show of negative football that Moyes masterminded, because I am at a loss as to see why someone who has a talented group of players at their disposal would be so damn rigid and defenssive-minded?

Maybe it's just how he is... you can imagine him utter the words "This Davey is NOT for turning" if questioned. Anyway onwards and upwards and all that.
Gavin Ramejkis
15   Posted 29/12/2010 at 08:27:54

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Doddy - 0 out of 10, utter bollocks. Jay you're guess is as good as anyone's as to what will happen when Cahill goes off, it's the grinch ? he could play Mucha up front going on his track record this season, he'd play anyone before putting a striker on, I've a feeling he'll put Fellaini up front with fuck all support. The players are being systematically destroyed by this ultimate anti-football dross.
Richard Dodd
16   Posted 29/12/2010 at 10:38:56

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Just to remind a few of the disaffected that we actually achieved a good AWAY point tonight ? that's a result isn't it?
Leon Perrin
17   Posted 29/12/2010 at 12:01:50

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No, we didn't ? we lost 2 points.
James Stewart
18   Posted 29/12/2010 at 19:06:27

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Good away point against one of the worst teams in the league yeah right!

Starting with that teamsheet was unforgivable.

Cast your mind back a month. Yakubu starts to hit form and scores. His reward - Dropped for a month in favour of the woefully out of form Saha.

Beckford comes on for Saha twice to score late on. His reward? 2 mins of playing time.

Even Anichebe plays ahead of him. Terrible decisions.

Micheal Lynch
19   Posted 29/12/2010 at 20:37:00

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Why do people respond to Dodd on here? He is clearly a wind-up merchant.
Richard Harris
20   Posted 30/12/2010 at 02:53:46

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Remember when Walter Smith played Steve Watson up front (and was criticised) although we had no available strikers and yet Moyes plays one up front against a struggling bottom three side and leaves three strikers on the bench. What a tactical genius !!Walter Smith would have loved that luxury. Next time around, no dour Scottish manager (unless it's Alex Ferguson !). Martin Jol would be an improvement. He smiles :0)

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