Suddenly the Telegraph's north-west football correspondent has assumed oracle status, as an expert on all things Everton. It started with his blog published last week on the Telegraph website, opining that David Moyes should "sell up" this summer ? meaning to say he should sell five or six leading players to fund a new team-building phase.
His special insight was then trumpeted on Radio Merseyside in an interview broadcast after the match on Saturday in which he reiterated his opinion that David Moyes has taken this Everton incarnation as far as it can go. And, Radio Merseyside intimated, we Evertonians should listen up because Rory Smith is a person in the know.
Well, Rory Smith's arguments are fundamentally flawed ? and should elicit more than just the straightforward response that all this Everton side really requires to prosper is a reliable goalscorer.
For one, he states that a team containing the youth of Seamus Coleman, Marouane Fellaini and Jack Rodwell, and the still fresh legs of Leighton Baines and even Bily, has reached the end of its life span. He suggests Everton need freshening up when David Moyes seems to be taking care of that part of the job already.
Essentially, though, he is pushing the viewpoint that Everton should cash in on their most saleable assets because they don't have any money and should start again. And that it is acceptable for this to happen ? for David Moyes to tear apart his carefully crafted ensemble.
He hinted on the radio Everton could profit to the tune of, say, a 'massive' £40million, which would unquestionably be fair recompense for Evertonians missing out on the flowering talents of Rodwell, Coleman and Fellaini, as well as the stalwart service, know-how and loyalty of Arteta, Cahill and Jagielka. Indeed, Everton don't need to enjoy the prime of the players they have developed, or a special relationship with experienced players that understand the club inside and out. Just take the money because it's not coming from anywhere else.
That is very much a Kenwrightian world view ? based on the premise that Everton have no future other than with Bill Kenwright. The world of reduced horizons where nothing is really possible for EFC ? and we must be grateful for small mercies.
The surprising part was that local radio gave such prominence to Rory Smith ? and you could be forgiven for wondering why a national journalist who clearly isn't an Evertonian (or from Liverpool for that matter) would be so eager to express these sentiments. Could it be that this purportedly authoritative voice was getting Blues attuned to what they could be hearing a lot more of in the summer? Easier for this convenient truth to come from a so-called neutral than from the club itself. Has he joined forces with David Maddock in doing Bill Kenwright's PR for him?Anyway, everything he had to say was founded on an acceptance that Everton will never have money, meaning that Bill Kenwright will remain as chairman, at the head of a board that is bankrupt both in finance and in vision. And it is the same line peddled by the local media. However, it is a line built on a lie: that Everton can't possibly find a buyer. The reason Everton haven't found a buyer is because they haven't been for sale ? that was established during the inquiry into the failed Destination Kirkby Project: that the major shareholders weren't interested in parting with their shares.Bill Kenwright has never once said categorically that Everton Football Club is for sale. Instead, there has been the ongoing "search for investors" ? yes, people who are going to give money to a board who are incapable of providing EFC with the wherewithal themselves.
Of course it is the stadium's fault that such a search hasn't come to fruition; a notion that can be dismissed when you consider the case of QPR, their billionaire backers and the less-than-palatial Loftus Road. Or it's the fault of location ? Everton being the second club in a relatively small city, like, erm, Manchester City are across the M62.
Never mind the fact they are one of the most traditional and historically successful clubs in the most popular league in the world.
No, the real reason Everton can't find a buyer is because there has been no will on the part of Bill Kenwright and his ALLEGED backer Phillip Green to sell the club. Don't let anyone tell you that Bill Kenwright is a safe pair of hands that Evertonians should be grateful for. The same media myth surrounded Walter Smith during his dinosaur days at Goodison and remember how David Moyes shot that down instantly by leading an Evertonian renaissance.
There is only one person who should be selling up and that is the chairman (and his ALLEGED backer, Phillip Green).
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
1 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:23:26
I often wonder if there is a degree of 'How dare player x be playing for Everton, he's too good for them' in Rory's comments.
The London-based media would love to see Rodwell at Utd, Fellaini at Chelsea, Coleman at Arsenal, etc. In fact, they almost expect it/demand it/will try and engineer it, through their drip-drip daily speculation over many months.
Bill Kenwright has got to leave our club because he is killing it. I used to defend him ? 'better the devil you know' and all that ? but things are getting farcical when we can't even loan players now, when players aren't getting replaced, when our intelligence is outright insulted when the likes of Bily and Rodwell say we don't need new signings when we clearly do. Things are coming to a head now, and it is time to act.
2 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:22:32
You'll still have a job on your hands trying to dig up far too many Evertonian heads buried deep in sand or BK's backside... so, unless something utterly catastrophic, such as relegation or bankruptcy, you'll get his lickspittles churning out the same old shite. I'll even go so far as to guarantee their next ammo will be the reduced season ticket uptake as an excuse for our failing finances as the fans who refused to renew will be the killers of the club.
3 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:31:55
4 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:38:59
5 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:55:35
6 Posted 30/01/2011 at 16:57:47
7 Posted 30/01/2011 at 17:04:11
8 Posted 30/01/2011 at 17:30:02
To acheive the kind of revenue needed to re-build would require the sale of all our well known players.
What would we then replace them with as the BIG 4, 5, 6 (or is it 19 now) PL clubs are paying 'Kings ransoms' for young talent ?
We'd more likely be buying journeymen & taking punts on lower league players etc
In the meantime our revenue would collapse as fans voted with their feet.
I know loads who've already stopped going & myself & two kids havn't gone to a game or bought any merchandise since last August.
If it gets any worse, with no hope of improvment or Kenwright going, then more will drop off every week.
After any fire sale, with a relegation fight looming, no prospect of euro football, lower gate, less renewals, less profile, less advertising & lower merchansise sales etc Vast chunks of any monies raised from sales would have to be used to plug rising
shortfalls & provide working capital.
I didn't hear Rory Smith address any of this !
But what do you expect as he writes for the 'Tory-graph' & they love to cut everything, without giving a second thought for the consequences.
9 Posted 30/01/2011 at 18:20:31
10 Posted 30/01/2011 at 18:47:48
11 Posted 30/01/2011 at 18:40:23
12 Posted 30/01/2011 at 18:51:58
A silly idea from someone who is clearly brainless or has no understanding of football. Yes, let's sell all our best and most promising players and buy lots of superior players to replace them, who will be much cheaper, and they will all gell instantly. It will then be a cert for us to win the league.
13 Posted 30/01/2011 at 20:19:26
Sums up the spine of the man really.
14 Posted 30/01/2011 at 20:02:13
Therefore, getting a headline on us is hard because we don't do the following:
> Get relegated, then promoted, then inexplicably sack our manager.
> Get bought out by Russian oligarchs or oil magnates.
> Go into administration.
> Get taken over by Yanks.
> Sack our manager during a game.
> Get held to ransom by our best players.
> Have our players in night club brawls, dodgy infidelity scandals... etc etc
Rory is clearly trying a different spin on our Football Cub. It is based purely on his pathetic theory and just another way of getting some attention in the sewage that passes for journalism.
However, I would agree to selling Arteta and moving on most of those outfield players over 29. But only if the money was given to Moyesy and he was allowed to go after some decent young players.
15 Posted 30/01/2011 at 20:42:21
All it does is cause an artificial 'spiral of despair' which can very quickly turn into a very real 'spiral of decline', as people get scared & stop spending.
Huge paralell's here with what is going on at our club in a way. Kenwright's 'business model' is very similar to a PFI ? Just look at the terms of the Finch Farm building. It can get you out of a hole short term & provide infra-structure but the long term costs are like putting your mortgage on a credit card & visiting loan sharks for any shortfall. We are already cutting at the club, by getting players off the wage bill & raising working capital through player sales.
This is to plug gaps as income falls & we have to meet the terms/payments of the plethora of agreements we've signed up for in the past. THIS IS THE HOLE WHERE ALL OUR MONEY DISAPPEARS ? that still, after all these years, is a mystery to some fans.
Against this backdrop, Rory Smith's plans really don't make any sense.
16 Posted 30/01/2011 at 21:49:56
17 Posted 30/01/2011 at 22:02:40
We are absolutely skint. The club is being run into the ground by one of its own. The manager is a tactically naive, gutless idiot. Half the team don't seem to give a shit but are happy to take home their monstrous pay packets. There is an apathy amongst the fans that will ultimitely see our clueless chairman keep control. No-one really seems to give a shit except me and about 50 others who post on here.
And then I have to read utter shite like this from some twat called Rory. Add to that the utter garbage written by Prentice on Friday. Good post, Patrick, but I fear you've just pushed me over the edge!
18 Posted 30/01/2011 at 22:13:18
19 Posted 30/01/2011 at 22:13:44
20 Posted 30/01/2011 at 23:11:21
Back to this article though, and this is just a hack who's belched out something differing from the other media squeals surrounding two middle-aged egotists who have been very publicly and unaccidentally led to slaughter. So, like a dog with a bone, Mr Smith's continuing to spew this bile out. Alternatively he could rant about how awful it is that Blackpool do not wish to gift their most high-profile (note, not best) player to The RS, or that Abramovic should provide our neighbours with not only a record transfer-fee but also either Drogba or Anelka in exchange for the mis-firing lady-boy! I suppose the other way for him to get paid for his opinion would be to fuck Jordon, or whatever she chooses to call herself these days, before running to the press aghast that she's not a wonderful wife.
Frankly, I'm not sure what's worse? The angry-mob mentality after a couple of less than perfect results followed by the mindless-apathy shown when we win a couple... or the media who either fuel/forget Everton's problems.
21 Posted 31/01/2011 at 00:08:18
There was a rumour last week that we were going into administration and although it didn?t materialise it looks like we are perilously close to it. The reason why I highlight this is that at the moment we are a wounded animal, and normally that signals the business vultures to circle overhead, so where are they ? and no, Patrick, vultures don?t need an invitation to fill their boots. Where is the discontented board member sounding off about the running of the club, and sensing his/her opportunity to become Mr Chairman, the same route Kenwright took to oust Johnston a decade ago?
The truth is we are not an attractive proposition to anyone ? not enough money coming in; too much money going out, and of course there?s the small matter of rebuilding GP, or financing a new ground. We are in a bad, bad place at the moment and it doesn?t look like it?s going to get better anytime soon. If I wake up tomorrow, and hear the news that BK has sold the club to.... any fuckin one, I would dance ?round naked, or at least in my PJs.
So would people stop posting this shite about "the club is not for sale", because, even if it wasn?t, people interested in buying us would make a move in the knowledge of our dire financial plight; take it from me, there is no honour of chivalry in business.
22 Posted 31/01/2011 at 02:20:27
You raise a good point about the bigger clubs doing it in small portions. The difference with Everton is we do it in even smaller portions and only every few years. Moyes's approach and general downfall is that he can have a summer where he brings in up to 6 players, but one of them might get a run if he's lucky.
As for the players mentioned ? Gosling, Yobo, Yakubu, Vaughan, Agard ? in regard to where the money we are saving on them goes. Well, their weekly wages were probably around these figures:
Gosling - £5k
Yobo - £40-50k
Yakubu - £40-50k
Vaughan - £5-10k
Agard - £1-2k
You do go on to add Pienaar so we'll put in another £35-50k there for what he was on.
We're only saving about £120-160k (about £7.8M a year) a week there, which would be one top of the world player, or two very good players... IF we weren't up to our eyeballs in debt that is getting bigger by the month with interest.
23 Posted 31/01/2011 at 02:54:32
Things will have to get worse before there is any attempt to make them better, I think it's human nature.
We had all better get behind this Supporters Trust for as much as we can all safely afford.
In 5 years we could have a substantial sum... well, enough to buy a League One Club out of receivership.
It can't happen??... No?
Just ask Aston Villa, Man City and Sunderland (and others for all I know).
24 Posted 31/01/2011 at 07:35:52
The only way out for him then would be to use his connections in the media to make Jack Rodwell the villain so that he can be sold to keep the train set going.
I have been banging on about this since 2004... KENWRIGHT MUST BE FORCED OUT.
25 Posted 31/01/2011 at 10:57:38
Completely agree with your analysis of this ? from little acorns stealth scenario ? which appears to be getting promoted; it's a variation on a theme that has long since been employed by Everton, a great club who has now, sadly, become all spin and no substance.
In my opinion, you're correct in your assumption that Everton has never been for sale; here's an extract from the public inquiry documents [revised planning statement] just two years ago;
"6.10 - A further point that is of relevance to any debate on the options that might be available to the Club to fund a new stadium, is the willingness and abilities of the Club?s directors to sell some or all of their interests in the Club in order to attract an investor who or which might have the ability in financial terms to fund a new stadium in its entirety or at the very least fund the shortfall that exists in the context of this proposals. As is pointed out in greater detail in the financial statement (document 26), this is not an option as the current directors have no intention of selling any of their interests in the Club."Everton's counsel went on to say, in his closing statement, that nobody, as confirmed by Everton's CEO, has been appointed to sell the club. Quite a remarkable statement seeing that I was sitting less than six feet from the chairman, a few months earlier, when he told 700 people at an EGM that Keith Harris had been employed to do exactly that.
You're hammering those nails into the coffin when you suggest there has been no will to sell the club; actually there was a fantastic incentive not to sell the club whilst Kirkby was in the offing; Everton's disastrous balance sheet would have improved considerably, due to being in receipt of the value derived from obtaining a 999-year lease on land transferred from public ownership to private for a nominal price, the term 'effectively free' springs to mind...
So the chairman felt it was in the best interests of the club to relocate to an unsuitable location that would have had little impact, if any, on the club's ability to operate as a top flight Premier League club; it seems incredible now but perhaps the answer lies in the old Latin phrase, cui bono. It's now apparent that certainly Everton wouldn't have.
Perhaps the final nail is about to be hammered in? Watch this space!
26 Posted 31/01/2011 at 11:06:36
27 Posted 31/01/2011 at 12:04:49
28 Posted 31/01/2011 at 12:16:16
29 Posted 31/01/2011 at 12:21:18
At 28% of a LIMITED company (not a PLC as some of us tend to think it is) cannot force a hostile takeover. So the investor... he comes along, agrees a deal with Bill (for the sake of arguement) and is weighing up his 28% and working to obtain the other 72%... only the other 72% are not willing to sell. They want more?! They like the tax dodge?! Who knows... but they don't agree to sell.
Now of course some of the 72% are normal shareholders, holding just a few shares. They will sell because the money for them is irrelevant. What about Green? What about Woods (who owns more than Kenwright)?
What if they dont want to sell? Then the 'new investor' has to share with them?
I think that is a massive stumbling block... the worst thing that happened to Everton wasn't Bill Kenwright ? it was instead the formation of a consortium of owners. Getting an agreement on a price is very difficult and what is clear is that the investor cannot give £1k a share to one person and £2k to another ? it has to be the same buying price throughout.
Kenwright, for all his failures, cannot make another shareholder sell his shares by selling his 28% ? more, a lot more, shares are required to put pressure on. Limited company... Hostile takeovers cannot occur easily.
30 Posted 31/01/2011 at 11:42:58
What I can't get my head around is why would anyone take much notice of a journalist who, I would wager very few would have heard of, knew what was best for a football club he has no known connection with? His take on the best route for Everton to take is no more than right up there with the fanciful ideas we come up with in the pub.
Another thing that is baffling to me is why anyone connected with the club would want to see it go under. I read articles on websites, very well written and seemingly backed with facts yet not one have I read that is from anyone listed as being in a position to have access to the boardroom. Without that access, then there must be a fair amount of supposition taking place.
As for the club being for sale or not, well like in any walk of life from household items to multi-million business, an item can be not for sale one day and for sale the next. Cadbury's definitely was not for sale comes to mind.
Being a keen Blue for many years, when I note that we have been unable to enter the transfer market in a meaningful squad building way for some time, I can conclude that money is a major factor; that brings a sense of worry that financially we are not that flush and I wonder what the board are doing to rectify matters. This leads to a sense of frustration when, even as a fan, I can see the positions that need addressing to keep us within challenging distance of some form of success but to not to be able to rectify this leads to more frustration and a desperation to know what is going on.
The real frustration for me and maybe a few other fans is reading newspaper articles, website articles, radio and TV pundits putting their views forward but always it just boils down to their personal take on the situation and some are very reasonably put and feasible, yet not one I have come across has come from anyone with even tenuous access to the boardroom, thus leaving us all reactive to what takes place without having any idea with what is actually going on until something or other happens. It is a state of affairs that is the very breeding ground of rumour and worse, personal attack.I am very sure the club know what is being said in the outside world and for me it is for them to come to a decision how to handle the growing speculation before perception supercedes reality. Until that time, we will all be scratching about in the dark and making up our own truths and that is no good to anyone.
As things stand with me after reading and listening to all that is being said about us, the 'truth' lays somewhere between 'meltdown' and 'good-housekeeping'.
31 Posted 31/01/2011 at 13:28:30
What I find hard to believe, is that there are all these buyers out there. If there are so many people wanting to buy Everton, why don't they tell the media "I want to buy Everton"? Simples.
32 Posted 31/01/2011 at 14:13:24
I live in a nice house, but for a certain amount of money, I'd sell up. I haven't got a 'For Sale' sign in my garden though, haven't named my price or have registered my intentions to sell with any estate agents. But hey, my intention is always to sell, if I get the right offer!
Remind you of anyone?
33 Posted 31/01/2011 at 14:35:40
34 Posted 31/01/2011 at 15:30:55
The new owners would not need to buy up all 100% of the shares, just a controlling interest, which could be obtained from a deal with any two of the three Directors. I would expect the shares of the smaller shareholders to be unaffected by this transaction.
35 Posted 31/01/2011 at 17:26:19
Rory Smith's idea is the worst of all possible worlds. Sell our best players, buy worse ones, but more of them, who won't know each other or be used to playing together and who have just arrived at Everton and may or may not know the first thing about us. Why the one guy thought is was a good idea is beyond me, but then why anyone else joined in must just show the deep, desperate level of frustration people are feeling at the moment.
36 Posted 31/01/2011 at 18:16:19
We WILL sell the assets because we have no choice.
BK is unassailable because of the £3mil Moyes pact and we're not in the bottom 3.
Only Moyes spilling the beans or imminent relegation will change things, neither is likely and BK knows it.
As long as we're in the Prem billy will hang around as long as he wants because that's what this generation of fans are happy with.
37 Posted 31/01/2011 at 18:02:56
More scary thing is that if something does not change drasticaly on the finance front, we will be left with no choice but to sell the family silver.
If transfer money is then used to plug leaks, the end result is an increasingly rapid decline. (Assuming we can't sell Rodwell to Man City for 50m or so!).
I think we will eek along the rest of the season, finish around 14th and then something will give in the summer. If no change looks likely, some of the players will start asking for a move ...........
38 Posted 31/01/2011 at 19:47:12
How many posters on here have ever worked for a boss who they think is shit, or crap at their job?
I would then ask those posters, did you resign in protest and state in your resignation letter the full reasons why you have resigned, fingering your boss as being responsible?
Put yourself in Moyes shoes and be realistic.
You are in a job you love and feel proud and privilaged to have, (I genuinely believe this to be true), your boss is a completely useless tool who hogs the limelight when things are going well but disappears when the shit hits the fan, leaving you to carry the can, you have always been the kind who doesn't shirk a challenge, (and there have been many in recent times).
Ask yourself, what purpose would it serve to resign?
It may be that Moyes is just about the only person at Everton who actually stands up to Kenwright and says what he thinks.
I was watching todays pre match interview with Moyes on Sky earlier and apart from looking completely pissed off, the interviewer asked him, amongst other things "will anybody else be leaving before the deadline?" Moyes gave him the 1000 yard stare and retorted "No, not as far as I am aware!"
"Not as far as I am aware", does this suggest that he didn't want to lose the players he has recently?
I wonder !!
39 Posted 31/01/2011 at 22:19:14
40 Posted 31/01/2011 at 22:56:37
This team has some brilliant players but some of them are getting on. Purely from a financial point of view we cannot allow saleable asset's to leave the club for free or to depreciate.
Players like Arteta have been mentioned in the press at £20-25M... The right manager would be able to replace Arteta for £10-12M; at this moment in time, I reckon we could replace him for about 10-12 pence the ways he's played this season.
An even better manager would be able to build Rodwell's confidence and use his undoubted ability to replace Mikel for free.
From a footballing view, some of these players are also blocking the path of younger promising players who need game time to really develop. Rodwell for Arteta, Cahill for Bily, Jagielka/Distin for Duffy/Mustafi etc.
I'm not saying that all the young lads will emulate these proven Premier League stars, but at some point they will have to get the chance because we haven't got a pot to piss in now so what happens when they retire? Get another bad injury or lose form in a big way (Arteta)?
At least with money in the bank we can go into the transfer market and act if a younger player can't reach the level he needs to. This will not be the case without a sell-to-buy policy, something all clubs operate. The key is selling at the right time and replacing them at the right price.
41 Posted 31/01/2011 at 23:15:16
In my view, Kenwright is in hock to two very rich men who are pulling the strings in the background. It suits him of course, as he still plays with the train set.
The football we play, the players we have and how Moyes uses them is one thing. But I think we are at a stage in our club's history, in which our tactics and everything to do with the actual way we play, is secondary to what is going on within the club itself. If our club carries on the way it is going, then I can't see anything other than a one-way ticket to mediocrity and no way back.
42 Posted 01/02/2011 at 00:15:08
Another abysmal transfer window has come and gone. The next one will be a lot worse to bear, because it will be longer and more important than this one. I can envisage Moyes starting to utter, come early May, his usual hapless wishes: "We are looking to bring in two or three new faces this summer". Then, as time wears on, that figure will gradually come down and will eventually be replaced by "a couple of loan players", and all this while, at the exit door, we'll probably witness some depressing movement.
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment to Fan Articles, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.
Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and MailBag submissions across the site.