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Can we actually Compete? - Ergh No

By Mike Oates :  24/02/2011 :  Comments (51) :
On a cold, wet and windy day recently, I sat and wondered whether I, in true Evertonian spirit, was just burying my head in the ground with totally unfounded ambitions that we would still rescue our season and get into the Europa League, either by FA Cup winners or finishing 7th in the Premier League. I reasoned the that we could then use this as a springboard to once again challenge for the coveted 4th place next season. I realise that the likes of Man Utd, Arsenal and probably Chelsea (though unsure with Chelsea) would, with their incredible wealth, experience, ambitious boards, ensure that they stay in the CL.

Are we then challenging just Spurs and Man City for the 4th place ? was this a credible scenario? I did a little research (see below) on respective squads and to be fair I?m totally gobsmacked how Spurs have developed over the last 2 years ? City, even with their billions, are behind Spurs in the quality of squads. Everton I?m afraid are light years away both in numbers and quality. You can actually see why Moyes tends to go for the jack-of-all-trades type of players ? he just hasn?t got the numbers to get the specialists we require, the forwards, the wide players and we are left with the likes of Heitinga, Osman, Bilyaletdinov, Anichebe, and Neville, all who are/can be used as defenders, defensive midfielders, wide men, forwards.

I can't see for the life of me how we can ever maintain success if we ever get it ? just imagine if we do qualify for Europe next year: How do we compete across 4 competitions at the level required to win a cup or qualify for Europe with the threadbare squad we have?

If I can see this, I?m sure the likes of Fellaini and Rodwell also fully realise it and must be dictating quite clearly to Bill and Dave that unless we get major investment in the summer and put big big monies into the squad, then they?ll be off following Rooney, Lescott, and Pienaar.

Can someone with better knowledge than me please explain why Spurs have managed to do what they?ve done over the last 2 years ? have they mortgaged the house and could easily do a Leeds? Or are they so strong at Board level that they will breed success?

Spurs ? Outfield Players

Hutton, Walker (on loan from Aston Villa), Naughton, Gallas, Kaboul, Corluka , Dawson, King, Woodgate, Bassong, Assou-Ekoto, Bale = 12 defenders , 10 Internationals

Lennon, Modric, Jenas, Huddlestone, Palacios, Sandro, Van der Vart, Pienaar, Kranjcar = 9 midfielders, 8 Internationals

Crouch, Palyuvchenko, Defoe, Keane (on loan at West Ham), Rose = 5 attackers , 4 Internationals

Total 26 players, 22 Internationals

Man City ? Outfield Players

Richards, Kompany, Zabaleta, Kolarov, Boateng, Toure, Lescott = 7 defenders, 7 Internationals

Milner, Wright-Phillips, Barry, Toure, De Jong, Vierra, Johnson, Silva, = 8 midfielders, 8 Internationals

Tevez, Dzeko, Jô, Balotelli = 4 attackers, 2 Internationals

Total 19 players, 17 Internationals

Everton ? Outfield Players

Hibbert, Neville, Jagielka, Heitinga, Distin, Baines = 6 defenders, 4 Internationals

Coleman, Cahill, Arteta, Fellaini, Osman, Bilyaletdinov, Rodwell = 7 midfielders, 4 Internationals

Saha, Beckford, Anichebe, (Yak, Vaughan out on loan) = 5 attackers, 2 International

I have deliberately not included Gueye, Duffy, Wallace, Baxter etc as they to my knowledge have not started a Premier League game (maybe Baxter has once?) and haven?t appeared enough to say they truly are Squad players.

Total 18 players, 10 Internationals

Reader Comments

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Dave Lynch
1   Posted 24/02/2011 at 15:38:36

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Depressing isn't it.
Victor Chang
2   Posted 24/02/2011 at 16:06:25

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Have you looked at our fixture list, Mike? With the exception of the trip to Old Trafford, I can't see a game we wont be expected to win.
Nick Entwistle
3   Posted 24/02/2011 at 15:58:06

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How many times did Moyes position Everton to be seen as real favourites for Champions League qualification yet for the lack of money to capitalise?

No-one was asking Bill to do a Leeds, but just once buy in some tallent and let the CL push us on where his cheque book hadn't been able.

Now we're seeing where standing still gets you. A stagnated squad where even the potential that was once alluring to players has all but ebbed away in lost hope and mortgages.

This chapter in our history is going to be seen not so much as what we did, more as what we didn't.

Jay Harris
4   Posted 24/02/2011 at 16:13:04

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Totally agree with Nick but, to answer your question, Spurs are run well commercially and have been for years ? which has made it more difficult for Appy Arry to bankrupt them too... but he is doing his best.

If players were available from East End market stalls, he would be in his element.
Larry Boner
5   Posted 24/02/2011 at 16:15:56

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Victor, do you mean the likes of West Brom, Wigan, Wolves, Blackburn, Villa? We have taken 2 points out of these clubs so far this season. If we had competed for and signed Sturridge for the remainder of the season, then I could have seen us quickly moving up the league.

Something is rotten in the corridors of Goodison when a quality young forward can go to play in front of 25,000 crowds at Bolton, when he could have played in front of 36,000± every home game, but we have no funds to take him.

Tony McNulty
6   Posted 24/02/2011 at 17:07:03

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Nick (#3),

Yours is a crisp and clear summary which neatly encapsulates our problem, and then highlights the failure of the current board.

I have been saying for two or three years that we needed £30-50 million of investment to take us to the next level. We have now been overtaken by four or five newer kids on the block and, although nothing is impossible, the odds against us getting back to CL status now have significantly lengthened.

I don't know the whys and wherefores of deals which might have been, and last minute due diligence problems, however, the current ownership have had a hell of a long time to fail to secure any new investment, an appropriate sale, whatever.
David Bridge
7   Posted 24/02/2011 at 18:03:59

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Lets be real next years goal will be to get back into the Premiership whilst still trying to oust Kenwright and Moyes......
Dan Brierley
8   Posted 24/02/2011 at 18:29:39

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Season Tickets:

Arsenal ? £893 ? £1,825
Spurs ? £650 ? £1,175
Chelsea ? £550 ? £1,210
West Ham ? £585 ? £830
Fulham ? £369 ? £899
Everton ? £443 ? £631

Matchday tickets:

Everton Ticket Prices: Cat A (£34 - £40) / Cat B (£30 - £36)
Tottenham Hotspur Ticket Prices: Cat A (£42 - £73) / Cat B (£32 - £52) / Cat C (£27 - £42)

Hope that clears it up. It has little to do with 'acumen' from the Spurs board. They simply get much more revenue than Everton do.

James Stewart
9   Posted 24/02/2011 at 18:51:47

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You can't purely judge a squad on how many internationals it has. Stupid.
Steve Cotton
10   Posted 24/02/2011 at 19:09:20

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James you miss the point... he is judging it by how many non-internationals are in it and it this respect he is right.

If we got back into Europe, Bill would fill his kecks as he knows he would have to spend and bring in a few faces to cope, and he has zero/nil/none/diddly squat/nada money anywhere left... (cross off as appropriate)
Trevor Lynes
11   Posted 24/02/2011 at 19:18:30

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I honestly believe that the expectations of EFC at board and manager level is... SURVIVAL in the Premier League ? and, if that is achieved, DM has done his job. This article is an honest description of where we are. We have no adequate cover for any of our best players and I have said, ad nauseum, God help us if Baines gets injured as we have nothing to cover for him competitively.

Howard, Baines, Fellaini, Cahill, Arteta, Distin, Saha and probably Jags when fit can play if they want to. Heitinga has already voiced his feelings about leaving and Bily regrettably has not played up to the standard his price warranted. Rodwell is still an unknown quantity as is Coleman and I think that they may well be on their bike sooner rather than later.

Our fans have a very inflated view of the merits/values of our team and the likes of Cahill, Neville, Arteta, Osman, Hibbert, Yak, Yobo, Anichebe, Vaughan and Mucha will not command good fees due to age in some cases and lack of ability in others. Unless a decent injection of cash and new blood is introduced quickly, I can see deterioration rather than improvement in the offing. Sorry, but that's my honest opinion and I truly hope to God that I am totally wrong!!

Joe McMahon
12   Posted 24/02/2011 at 19:34:05

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Kenwright fucked up big time in regard to the future history of Everton FC as, when our chance came to qualify (properly) for the Champs League, we were trying with Kilbane, Beattie and Marcus Bent!

Cheers, Bill... just £15 million on two or three players may have brought us millions, and raised our stature to a wider audience.

Gavin Ramejkis
13   Posted 24/02/2011 at 20:25:58

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Dan you fail completely to take into account off-field income generation and sponsorship deals. How many days of the year is Goodison Park empty and earning the club £0.00? Can someone provide a league table of the EPL shirt sponsorship deals? S

purs and Arsenal have very good business people in charge and have had for decades, Spurs had a share rights issue within the last decade and raised a significant wad for team building, what have Everton done besides blowing more than we got for Pienaar on Desperation Kirkby?

Gavin Ramejkis
14   Posted 24/02/2011 at 20:47:13

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Dan, I'll back that up with a bit more, as per Deloitte's figures:

Top 20 Teams

12th Place Spurs 09/10 146.3m Euros up three places, their income is broken down into 31% Matchday, 43% Broadcasting and 26% Commercial

Matchday only makes up 31% of their income.

Out of the English teams in their top 20:

Man U - 35% Matchday
Arsenal 42% Matchday
Chelsea - 32% Matchday
RS - 23% Matchday
Man City - 20% Matchday
Aston Villa - 27% Matchday

The bulk of club's income now is from broadcasting and commercial, unless you have a 70,000 seater and fill it every week your matchday isn't going to come anywhere near these two.
James Stewart
15   Posted 24/02/2011 at 21:25:06

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Steve you miss my point. Being an international doesn't really mean anything unless it's for a top nation. Anichebe has international caps for gods sake and he is terrible! Heskey got over 50 caps!

Plus the facts are wrong!
"Coleman, Cahill, Arteta, Fellaini, Osman, Bilyaletdinov, Rodwell = 7 midfielders, 4 Internationals "

Coleman is now an Irish international, Cahill definitely is, Arteta - no, Fellaini - yes, Osman - no, Bily - yes, Rodwell yes. That's 5 not 4. And Arteta would be in most international squads!
Delboy Harry would love to get his hands on Arteta and he's a non-international.
John Ford
16   Posted 24/02/2011 at 22:39:25

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Since 2003:

City have spent £448 million

Spurs have spent £290 million

...in both cases most of the spend has been over the past three years.

Everton have spent £106 million.

The net spend shows an even bigger gap. It makes finishing fourth so difficult if season after season you are outplayed in the market.
Mike Oates
17   Posted 24/02/2011 at 22:45:52

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~15 James - Rodwell has not won a full England cap!!
Dan Brierley
18   Posted 24/02/2011 at 23:50:27

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Gavin, I am just trying to highlight the fact that Spurs earn a hell of a lot more, just by being in London. If they were up north like us, do you honestly think they could be so financially successful?

I agree that Goodison sits empty for most of the season which seems a waste. But isn't that because it is bang in the middle of a residential area? What else could it be used for if not football?
Victor Chang
19   Posted 24/02/2011 at 23:44:45

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Larry (5) ? We're gonna climb up the table, qualify for Europe & win the FA Cup mate. But that will never happen if even the clubs so called supporters refuse to believe in them. Negativity has done a lot of harm to this club. A bit of optimism & belief from the Everton family is what this club needs. I know i might seem a bit over optimistic, but I am EVERTONIAN and this team needs my support and the crowd needs to show its support more instead of ruining the matchday experience for others before the game has even started.
David O'Keefe
20   Posted 25/02/2011 at 01:06:50

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Dan, you're dodging the issue for reasons that I don't understand. Gavin has refuted your lame argument regarding matchday income and your response is, yeah, but... you're no idiot so what are you trying to prove?
Gavin Ramejkis
21   Posted 25/02/2011 at 01:33:21

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Dan, Villa aren't up North, haven't won diddly for years, yet remain in the top twenty and guess what: they aren't in the middle of nowhere either.

Tickets and bums on seats isn't what the EPL is about anymore, it hasn't been for a good few years with Commercial Sponsorship deals and Broadcasting rights putting ticket sales into a lesser requirement. The club should look at using the buildings it has to host corporate events, training sites, business meetings, conferences...

It sounded harebrained the other week when I mentioned it but say there is a concert at the Echo Arena which is sold out, how about a deal with the venue and promoter that we host a live televised link up to the arena and sell cheaper tickets at Goodison which is sat there like a spare part earning nothing? The promoter gets more tickets sold and the club earns a few quid it wouldn't have by doing nothing, the punters get a stadium feel to the gig but cheaper and on a big screen... Christ, we could even make a profit on refreshments too.

James Hollister
22   Posted 25/02/2011 at 04:00:46

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Hate to burst your bubble even further, but there is no European qualification via winning the FA cup anymore...
James Hollister
23   Posted 25/02/2011 at 04:01:24

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Nick Entwistle ? In a way, I am pleased we didn't qualify for a CL spot coz we couldn't even beat a half decent side in Uefa. Season to season in Uefa taught our Davey nothing, we still got tonked by the likes of Benfica an Sporting..
James Hollister
24   Posted 25/02/2011 at 04:03:46

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James Stewart ? I am not so sure Arteta would be in most international squads. It was only what? ? a couple of months ago there was talk of him playing for England, and FA said straight out , we aren't interested. With some of the tripe in the England team, you would have thought they'd be entertained by the idea, but not a chance.

He isn't in the Spanish squad because there are way better players than him in the pecking order. There's two top international sides that won't take him, and I'd also think it would be the same for much of the rest of the top teams.

We love him at Goodison but, like as been said, we have an over-inflated view of our own players... the fact Arteta can't get into the Spanish side, or even try to convince the FA he is the right choice for them, bares the facts. It's sad but it's also true. His age and his relative ability do put him behind some of the better players in the position he plays... he struggles mightily to get the ball over the first player at the best of times.

James Hollister
25   Posted 25/02/2011 at 04:19:20

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Victor Chang ? Either you're on cloud cuckoo land or our Mr Doddy. What has negativity got to do with very bad board management, and a lying chairman?

We are in this mess because of the continued mismanagement at the very top... we simply cannot compete. The team we have is getting older and older, and the fact we can't compete is making players look at their futures away from this club where ambition is almost non-existent.

If you want to blame someone for something, there is a whole boardroom full of staff at Everton... but don't blame the supporters for having to continuously put up with the same lies, deceit and inability to buy the players we need to progress. We have gone completely backwards not forwards... no amount of support is going to change the fact we are well and truly up the river without a paddle or shit creek.

Daniel Johnson
26   Posted 25/02/2011 at 09:33:17

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James Hollister, the idea of Arteta playing for England was scrapped when a Fifa rule was discovered preventing him from doing so. It's something to do with playing for a National side at under 16 level or something.
Larry Boner
27   Posted 25/02/2011 at 10:02:21

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James # 25, you beat me to it. Victor, I have supported Everton for over 50 years and been and still are a season ticket holder, for most of those years. I have brought up my kids to be Evertonians and you could not wish for more committed blues than all my family. But ? and it's a big 'but' ? the club has the basis to be a regular top 6 and European participant; the manager, the players and the supporters are good enough and committed enough, the responsibility of the board is to find ways to make this happen ? they are patently not doing this, or have any plan to improve their chances of doing this.

I would settle for a ground improvement plan, to generate additional income, an improved commercial side, a robust transfer ethos that allows the manager to utilise his playing assets to improve the quality of his squad. If we have no money then let's see plans to generate income. Isn't there a TV show that can help people out over their money problems? Let's apply to go on that, at least it's trying to do something!

Calling supporters negative for wanting the best for their club and not accepting stagnation ? we may be fans, but Evertonians are not sheep, not in these times when people are fighting for every penny.

David Bridge
28   Posted 25/02/2011 at 10:42:38

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Victor - If you actually attend the match, you would realise that we do get behind the team; the roar when they come out is immense, we chant for Moyes (even though most don't rate him). I feel so good when the lads run out and feel we can win every game... BUT...

When I see the negative team sheet (no strikers or Anichebe), the same negative play, players on massive salaries strolling around like they are on holiday at the beach (Arteta / Saha), players who consistently give the ball away (Osman / Neville / Fellaini), the fact we have to go a goal down and wait till Moyes's Casio alarm hits 75 minutes before we see a change... And the the fact half the players don't try.

This is the reason we are disgruntled and moan. The fact we are currently poor is NOT the fault of the fans ? we are the only good constant at the club. The fans who go the game have every right to moan. I assume by your unrealistic optimism, you haven't actually been to a game this season!
Dan Brierley
29   Posted 25/02/2011 at 10:00:41

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Gav, I agree that would be a great idea. Why not go the whole hog? You could broadcast any event in the world, not just what's on at the Echo Arena. But, as I already mentioned, Goodison is in the middle of a residential area. I don't think you would get permission to broadcast live concerts.

We are losing the game in other areas:

Spurs Gate Receipts: £26.85M
Ours (which includes Programme Sales): £19.2M

There is £7.5M before you have even started, even though we have an average attendance figure which is almost the same (EFC: 35,851; Spurs: 35,820). This is the equivalent of having three more £50k-a-week players on our books.

Commercially, I expect us to do better next year as the new shop in Liverpool 1 will have made some extra revenue. And once the new facility opens, we should be better off in terms of corporate hospitality, a point where Spurs are light years ahead of us. But this won't help regarding exec boxes.

We have 11 boxes seating 8 people. They have 32 boxes seating 12-18 people. These also pick up the London premium, which is significantly higher than what you would get for the same facilities in our area of Liverpool.

A new stadium seems to be the only way to get back on track, but this new investment in the retail building suggests we will not be moving for the foreseeable future. Kitbag are not going to put that building up without some assurances that we will stay at Goodison for a period of time.

David Thomas
30   Posted 25/02/2011 at 11:37:37

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Gavin,

"The club should look at using the buildings it has to host corporate events, training sites, business meetings, conferences... "

They already do and have done for a number of years.

Martin Graves
31   Posted 25/02/2011 at 12:14:21

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Personally, I don't expect us to raise any extra money from the shop in L1 ? that money was secured when we leased it out to Kitbag for 10 years. Secondly, the new development will not raise any money for Everton. Only the redevelopment of the boxes will, but most of this money goes too our caterers because we've leased everything inside Goodison we possibly can!

On the notes of Spurs, they developed a strategy under Commolli years ago to invest in young British / Exciting Foreign players, and they are now reaping the rewards. Most of these players were bought with fees to be paid to Championship Clubs over the years of their contracts (with deals similar to us attempting to sign Naughton and Walker). It was either that or clubs who struggled financially, ie Portsmouth.

Don't forget, they also sold Berbatov and Keane for £50million, and we secured several players after selling Rooney to Utd, notably Neville, Howard for example. Spurs did the same with Defoe and Crouch, they were owed money from transfers so, instead of paying out lots of money, they just took the players back and paid smaller amounts ? these things need to be taken into consideration when weighing up the argument

Alan Smeeth
32   Posted 25/02/2011 at 13:05:48

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4 Points off Spurs this year. (6 if Howard didn't flap)
3 Points off City and counting.
Gavin Ramejkis
33   Posted 25/02/2011 at 15:03:17

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David T, I've been to a meeting/training course at Goodison and the offering was poor and apparently not great value for money, that's down to the club but surely there is a better way to do things. If the tent behind the Park End was a proper structure, it could have hosted off-field events.

Dan, I've been to concerts in built-up areas and its down to the timing of the end of the concert, not the fact it takes place. The number of corporate boxes at Goodison is probably less than every other team in the EPL with the exception of Blackpool, that's been the case since before the Park End was replaced and certainly the length of time the EPL has been about.

The shop in L1 has been there since the very end of the Capital of Culture and takings will be whatever margin we have left after Kitbag take their slice, we won't be increasing sales with a tiny squad and poor league finishing so that's unlikely to change anytime soon.

Building a new stadium won't attract corporates just like that ? they want something to be connected to and that's a successful team, a Catch-22 which you can't get unless you invest in the team ? which you can't do without money. The London weighting part isn't really relevant in all cases, see Villa as a prime example ? well outside London yet still in Deloitte's top twenty rich list; it's down to how the club is run and revenue streams are found and used.

Dan Brierley
34   Posted 25/02/2011 at 15:26:20

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Gav, according to the Deloitte report, they made £10M more than us. To break that down, £5M was in extra gate revenue, £2M extra in broadcasting, and £3M in commercial activities. Deloitte have put this growth down to the fact that they reached Wembley twice last year, not down to excellent commercial performance.

Villa will release their accounts within the next few weeks, I expect to see their loss column much deeper than ours.
Gavin Ramejkis
35   Posted 25/02/2011 at 16:47:34

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Dan, are Villa selling or loaning players to keep admistrators at bay? Are we? We achieved Wembley twice in a season and still made a loss, Villa didn't, who would you say has a better ran business?
Dan Brierley
36   Posted 25/02/2011 at 18:31:44

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Villa Players Out in Jan 2011:
Steve Sidwell (to Fulham)
Curtis Eugene Davies (Birmingham, £3.5m)
James Michael Collins (Shrewsbury T, Loan)
Shane Thomas Lowry (Sheffield U, Loan)
Brad Guzan (Hull, Loan)
Andreas Weimann (Watford, Loan)
John Alieu Carew (Stoke, Loan)
Jonathan Lee Hogg (Portsmouth, Loan)
Isaiah Osbourne (Sheffield Wed, Loan)
Stephen Ireland (Newcastle, Loan)

Gav, what do you make of that? Does it look like books have had to be balanced as Bent, Makyoun & Pires have come in? Not to mention Lerner has put more than 50M of his own money into Villa to balance the books. That doesn't count as 'commercial success' in my world. Its just a hand out.
Dan Brierley
37   Posted 25/02/2011 at 19:06:09

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If you also add the sale of Milner & Barry (35M) into the equation, where is the fruits of all Villa's commercial success Gav? Why did they have to sell their best players if they are doing so well? I really don't see it.
David Thomas
38   Posted 25/02/2011 at 18:58:56

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Gavin,

You said "The club should look at using the buildings it has to host corporate events, training sites, business meetings, conferences... "

As I commented, they already do this and have done for a number of years. I know this because I have had numerous seminars and meetings there etc.

You then say you have been there for a meeting yourself, so I don't understand why you are criticising the club for not doing something you know for a fact that they do as you have experienced it first hand.

When you say value for money what exactly do you mean? I mean when you are going for a meeting, you're only paying for access to the lounge etc, the rest of the experience is surely down to the company whose seminar / meeting your attending?

I appreciate we are all very passionate about how the club is run and all have varying opinions about what is best for the club, but in my opinion on this topic you seem to be simply criticising the club for the sake of it.

James Flynn
39   Posted 25/02/2011 at 18:52:51

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As far as Villa is concerned, they can make all the money more than us they want. Lerner is a horseshit owner. Just look at his Cleveland Browns' record in the NFL. Fans as rabid as any EPL team's, 70,000 seat stadium packed game after game, and the money each NFL team gets from TV contractsbefore a single fucking game is played (including the $4 billion they will get even if next season isn't played!).

I appreciate our financial plight, but use another money = success comparison other than Villa vs EFC. Villa gets nowhere as long as Lerner owns them.
Joe McMahon
40   Posted 25/02/2011 at 19:49:21

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Alan (32), not sure what you're trying to say, but it could also be said:
1 point off Bolton
2 points off West Ham
and so far
0 points off Newcastle and West Brom
1 point from Wolves at home.
Robert Daniels
41   Posted 25/02/2011 at 20:19:31

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I went to Huyton Village yesterday to buy my 9-year-old some footy shirts for an upcoming holiday. I got some Italian shirts in a sale and there was loads of Redshite shirts in the sale... you know, last year's away kits and that sort of thing.

I couldn't see an Everton shirt, old or new. I asked the girl why no Everton shirts for sale and she informed me that they aren't allowed to sell them.

So, in Huyton, an Everton fan can't buy a shirt... I find that fucking unbelievable, and typical of that shower that runs (into the ground) our football club.

Disgrace.
Tom Hughes
42   Posted 25/02/2011 at 20:13:49

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Dan,

"We have 11 boxes seating 8 people. They have 32 boxes seating 12-18 people."

I think they actually have something like 120 boxes at WHL, and more importantly the size of business district to fill them.... Even DK was only going to have a meagre 22 boxes, so not sure the whole new stadium thing is necessarily the way forward per se.

A tier of boxes could be provided above the Upper Bullens for a fraction of the cost of a whole new stadium. The boxes could actually be more numerous and better situated too. Maybe the Lower Bullens could be given the box treatment with internal steelwork preserved as a feature. In fact the shelf at WHL's East stand is precisely this type of conversion, and a Leitch stand too... Can't say I like it so much though!!

There is also potential to suspend an exec tier beneath the current Top Balcony....Not to mention corner towers as seen at several clubs. The fact that these type of conversions/additions have not been explored fully, only adds to the list of boardroom deficiencies and mistakes people have highlighted.

Dan Brierley
43   Posted 26/02/2011 at 01:38:25

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Tom, excuse my ignorance, but have you ever sat at the back row of the Main Stand or Lower Bullens? I have sat in both, and I can assure you that the view is already obscured, never mind hanging an exec box on existing structure.

http://www.freewebs.com/tims92/Everton/Goodison%20Park%20panoramic%201.jpg

I genuinely don't see the ability to hang boxes on these already thin structures, without affecting hundreds if not thousands of seats. Can you please explain how its possible?

Again, I apologise in advance for my ignorance. But looking at the photos, I can't for the life of me imagine how hanging 10 ft boxes will not affect those seats behind. Look at the 2 boxes already perched on the main stand at the Park End side, and imagine those continuing all the way down the main stand. And add another 6ft to the end wall along the Bullens Road side for the boxes you suggested. I really don't see how these boxes could physically be put in place, without affecting current seating.

Chad Schofield
44   Posted 26/02/2011 at 09:19:19

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Some very well written points, with a smattering of the slightly bizarre... if everything were down simply to positive mental attitude then Everyone would be considerably higher up the league as we would have blasted our way into the start of the season; and it would be Bill(s) having a royal wedding this summer rather than Wills (such is the man's ability to delude even himself).

We attracted players by promising to be on the cusp of something great, but we stalled when we had our chances, so now all we can truly offer is to be a shop window, until there are some fundamental changes.

With regards to corporate, you simply can't just stick a tramp in a suit and send him off to a business meeting. For all its rough edges, Goodison does have some fantastic attributes (admittedly more based on its history) but it is unkempt thanks largely to the current regime.

I also wouldn't start condemning Villa just yet... I would suggest that after a couple of prudent years they may start making some more moves next season.

Fundamentally though we need Colonel Kenwright to do one... but don't be surprised to see some desperation tactics in a bid to cling to power... though don't expect any money in the post.
Gavin Ramejkis
45   Posted 26/02/2011 at 09:34:02

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David T, the reference for not being value for money referred to the guy running the course who said he wouldn't be using it again down to the costs in comparison to other venues. As a delegate, I didn't pay but being the venue it was I was interested to hear from the organ grinder what they thought, they only used it as other venues were booked out and he hadn't used it before.

It's not a moot argument just on occasions like this I have to explain the detail a little further. The criticism was from a guy running a course, every other course I went to of his in town was an Mordor so location wasn't an argument.

Dan, you highlight sales that Villa have made and loans out, but didn't point out that these players were replaced. It's common knowledge O'Neill spat his dummy out when the chairman sold his players probably pointing out to him that he was the chairman and not O'Neill. The not so subtle nuance you have failed to see is BK sold/loaned players out with NO replacements.

Interesting that you also add that Randy Lerner pumped £50m of his own into Villa, remind us all again how much any of the shareholders including BK have put into the club again beyond shares????? They don't even pay for tickets or refreshments and you can bet your bottom dollar when they travel it'll be on the club's tab too.

Dan Brierley
46   Posted 26/02/2011 at 10:31:42

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Gav, it's gone a bit far now. If you honestly believe that the Chairman who runs the club day by day without taking a salary, should have to pay for his own ticket to go to the match, then I think you seriously need to consider whether or not you are just being bitter and twisted.

And your suggestion that 37-year-old Robert Pires is a 'replacement' for the 25-year-old 2010 PFA Young Player of the Year, James Milner, then quite frankly I think you are talking shite.

But thank you for acknowledging the fact that Villa are also a selling club, in that the chairman sold the manager's two best players to balance the books. Thankfully, we don't have that kind of behaviour at Goodison Park. For all of Kenwright's faults, at least he leaves the first team choices down to the manager.

Larry Boner
47   Posted 26/02/2011 at 11:08:58

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Dan, have a look at the plans for the ground upgrade on the KEIOC site, by Mr Hughes. I would think that the removal of the seating in the Lower Bullens, up to the edge of the overhang, making the whole of that area an executive site, with facilities behind the glass screens etc, would generate more income than the poor facilities on the other side of the ground, improving also the aesthetics of the ground.

Of course the Main stand side could then be a sweep back from the pitch side seats, after removing the sheds. Unfortunately, what is missing is the willingness to do anything. I am sure you could get a company to do the Bullens Road corporate changes for nothing with their name displayed as a reward, the advertising in lieu of their fee.

When you look round the ground, you can see many areas that could be improved to increase capacity, it is still basically as it was before the all-seating came in, a stadium suited for standing rather than seating.

Tom Hughes
48   Posted 26/02/2011 at 11:03:13

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Dan,
I'm fully aware of the areas you're talking about. I've sat in them all at some point over the last 40 years. I've also got full site plans and stadium drawings, and have run a sight-line modelling program to see how new rows could be added. The points I made were with regard to addressing the perceived shortage of exec boxes, while at the same time eradicating the worst seats in the current arrangements.

The idea of suspending exec boxes beneath the top balcony is already replicated in a small part by the Police control box. This new structure would necessitate the removal of the rear-most rows at that end of the mainstand. As stated these are amongst the worst in the stadium, so no great loss. They also only run approx 1/3rd the length of the stand due to angle of the Goodison Rd, so their removal will not reduce the capacity so greatly, especially given the reinstatement of the full enclosure and extension of the front 4 rows, as already implimented on one half of the mainstand. This is shown in some of the scale cross sections shown here:

http://www.keioc.net/index.php?page=technical-drawings

As regards the Bullens, the boxes could be above an extended upper tier (above the road itself). Sight-line modelling shows that upto 19-20 rows can be added to the upper Bullens and still be fully c-value compliant. I'd suggest at least 12-15 rows with 1 or 2 layers of boxes behind. To be honest, this extension alone would probably provide for all our exec-box needs without the mainstand's modification.

As regards the Lower Bullens, my personal preference would be to re-profile the current Lower Bullens into the Paddock as one unified tier which stops at the second row of columns. This would get rid of the back 5-8 rows, freeing up space for circulation and toilets at its rear etc. The loss there would be more than gained upstairs. This would be a terrace stand, and priced accordingly. The result would be a preserved historic stand.

The alternative of course is to replace this stand..... and contrary to the previous propaganda, one new stand at GP will never cost anywhere near as much as 4 at Kirkby . Basically, I was just trying to show that there are some quite tidy solutions to the problem of limited exec/corporate provision...... on top of that these could create the unique, and something that would cost absolute fortunes to replicate elsewhere.

Dan Brierley
49   Posted 26/02/2011 at 12:24:07

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Tom, I can see you have done a hell of a lot of work on this project and invested a lot of your own time and effort. Hats off to you, it is genuinely impressive. It's also refreshing to debate points that have been investigated and backed up with some facts, as opposed to debating throw away comments without genuine substance.

Have these plans been presented to the club yet Tom? I think the ideal solution would be to rebuild the whole stand. It's the stand that I think is really outdated and needs a complete overhaul. But that said, if the club are looking for an entirely new ground as the preferred option, I would guess they would find it hard to justify paying for any ground developments in the short term.
Chris Briddon
50   Posted 28/02/2011 at 10:01:14

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James (#22) No Europa League space for FA Cup winners ? I think you are very much mistaken there my friend!

Birmingham City have just qualified for winning the League Cup so to suggest there is none for the FA Cup is frankly ludicrous
Chris Briddon
51   Posted 28/02/2011 at 11:16:53

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It's a fascinating list of players... but the fact is you can only field 11 on the pitch at once ? and in answer to your question of "Can we compete?" The answer is a categorical YES. On the pitch we are clearly a match for Spurs and Man City as results this season and previous seasons have proved.

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