Moyes clearly wanted a chance to look at the 6ft-6in teenage defender without making a fuss or alerting other Premier League clubs to his possible transfer targets. Unfortunately Moyes was spotted in the crowd by eagle-eyed Darlington fans and soon the press were tipped off to his presence at the game and his interest in young Burn.
The next day the press reported on the story and Moyes was forced to officially confirm that he was interested in signing Dan Burn for Everton. The weekend passes and today, it's revealed that Fulham have had a bid accepted for Burn and the youngster is currently at Craven Cottage undergoing a medical.
It's possible that Fulham were already aware of young Burn before the Moyes story was leaked. But it's also possible that Mark Hughes simply read about Moyes's interest in Burn and just decided good enough for Moyes, good enough for Fulham.
Moyes has a reputation of spotting gems in the lower divisions and who could blame other Premier League managers for attempting to steal Moyes's targets. It doesn't take a lot of money to outbid Everton. I would imagine there are quite a few Premiership managers kicking themselves for not outbidding Everton when Moyes signed Seamus Coleman for £60,000.
Certainly Harry Redknapp watches Moyes carefully. A couple of years ago, when he saw Moyes attempting to sign Kyle's Naughton and Walker, Redknapp simply outbid Everton and took both players to Spurs. Walker is now a part of the England squad.
It must be so frustrating for Moyes to spend time scouting the lower leagues and identifying prospects only for other clubs to outbid him right at the finish line. David Moyes is in danger of becoming the head scout for other clubs like Fulham and Spurs.
It's a real shame that Moyes's secret mission to Darlington seems to have failed. It's a real shame that he was spotted in the stands and the press got wind of the story. But ultimately its a real shame Everton dont appear to have the financial clout or the appeal to actually sign the players that David Moyes wants.
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 11/04/2011 at 14:32:04
In the Express Saturday, he went to South Wales to watch Newport play Darlington. So Darlington fans who spotted him did so in Newport. So the Express state that he did a 400-mile round trip to South Wales to the stadium with Andy Holden.
2 Posted 11/04/2011 at 14:35:39
According to a number of Toffeeweb followers apparently people come to Everton regularly to watch Anichebe fall over.
3 Posted 11/04/2011 at 14:33:39
To think that other managers/clubs aren't aware of lower league players is wrong.
Both Naughton & Walker were junior England players before Moyes was interested, so to say Redknapp only bid for them because Moyes did is crazy.
This young Darlo player probably had his CV hawked around the top clubs asking to be checked out, which most clubs probably did. Then Moyes will have heard the good reviews & decided to check him out. So there would have already been plenty of donkey work done. In today's game it would be foolish to sign a player without doing homework on a player.
Remember Souness getting his fingers burned at Southampton? That was magical. :D
4 Posted 11/04/2011 at 14:30:31
- Yakubu scored 20 odd before his achilles went;
- Beattie even had a period of being tipped for England, we only lost £1.5m,
- AJ was a good striker just wasn't clinical enough and we still took a profit from his sale;
- Heitinga, for £6m, as arrogant as he may be, is still a great buy;
- Fellaini is proving more than his price tag;
- Distin, could be questioned as £5m was a fair sum for a 31-year-old but he's been solid most of the season;
- Bily, frustrating as! Could be a great player but makes sloppy mistakes, not sure he has enough pace for out wide or room for him in the middle but hope he proves a lot of us wrong;
- Per Krøldrup, he came, he went, we lost £1.5m.
All these signings have been good or had the potential to be good for Everton. Krøldrup didn't last long and has shown in Italy that he had potential. I too just wish we had more money for Moyes to play with.
Also be nice if he felt adventurous with his selections a bit more, but these injuries have given us a taste of excitement about the possible prospects we have sitting on the bench!
5 Posted 11/04/2011 at 14:47:17
I'm sure if Moyes had wanted some kid from Darlington, he could have had him ahead of Fulham. I'm also sure he has done the same to other teams. Beckford was set for Newcastle at one point and Cahill was set for Leicester.
6 Posted 11/04/2011 at 15:05:19
An old friend of mine scouted for Crewe and unearthed Platt when he had actually gone to watch a different player... happens a lot!!!
7 Posted 11/04/2011 at 15:32:28
8 Posted 11/04/2011 at 15:43:50
9 Posted 11/04/2011 at 15:57:39
10 Posted 11/04/2011 at 16:07:34
You mean Tim Cahill who was already pretty famous? or do you mean Lukas Jutkiewicz, Scott Spencer, John Ruddy, Iain Turner etc...??? Other clubs must be rushing to steal Moyes's latest find.
11 Posted 11/04/2011 at 16:38:23
But yeah you can include Ruddy (played 40 games for Norwich this season and will be a Premier League keeper next season) if you want.
Jutkiewicz and Turner are also proving very useful players at Championship level so yeah them too.
12 Posted 11/04/2011 at 16:33:06
13 Posted 11/04/2011 at 17:16:32
14 Posted 11/04/2011 at 18:01:36
15 Posted 11/04/2011 at 18:47:25
Or are his scouts not really good enough? Probably not, they just make a living from watching prospects.
16 Posted 11/04/2011 at 18:46:18
Is Burn the next big thing or just the next Sean Doherty?
Remember when Fulham pinched Sean Doherty from Everton's youth academy? It was big news at the time with Doherty being highly regarded and playing for England U17 and U21.
The press made a big thing about Fulham stealing the next big thing from Everton's youth Academy. Sean Doherty currently plays for Witton Albion in the Northern Premier League.
17 Posted 11/04/2011 at 19:07:57
Our very own Vellios today said, ?I had offers from Aston Villa and Fulham and a lot of clubs in Greece like Olympiakos and AEK, but here was the best choice for me."
18 Posted 11/04/2011 at 20:06:36
19 Posted 11/04/2011 at 20:12:05
20 Posted 11/04/2011 at 20:10:19
Moyes also confirmed that Everton have submitted a bid for Burn.
21 Posted 11/04/2011 at 23:22:31
Most on here who give a toss know what I think of Moyes. I'm not going to go into it, except to say that the one thing he is very good at is finding good players low down, which there is always going to be an abundance of.
I would listen to most people who say are saying that it is only a coincidence that Moyes was looking at him whilst other clubs were too. The UK is a small place.
The only deterring factor in this story though is that it's Sparky that has, yet again, taken a player that Moyes fancies. Like when he was trying his best to get Lescott, Hughes shows fairly strong signs that he has absolutely no imagination, or time for scouting himself.
When he had all that money at City, he took that as an excuse that he could just bid for anyone who had proven themselves to be top drawer. Now that he doesn't have a book of blank cheques, he is doing the next worst thing, and reading the press for who is chasing who.
22 Posted 12/04/2011 at 01:05:59
Dick, reading the reports, he hasn't signed for Fulham yet. It could be mis-reporting in that he was invited down to look at the facilities. Therefore there may be an opportunity. Lots for the young lad to think about, proximity to home, moving to "dat London" etc.
As others have said, and indeed yourself, he's promising - that's all. Remember when we signed Jon O'Connor from a North Eastern club? He was tipped as a future England CB.
23 Posted 12/04/2011 at 10:28:23
Kenwright out! ;)
24 Posted 12/04/2011 at 10:58:14
25 Posted 12/04/2011 at 11:52:25
To suggest that David Moyes is the only person in the land that watches lower leagues is absurd.
26 Posted 12/04/2011 at 13:53:33
No Dick, I'm sorry but I stopped reading here.
Mark Hughes definitely did not pick up his copy of the Express that morning and think "Shit, Moyes has found another one... someone get me Al-Fayed!!"
There are genuine criticisms to be made against Everton's transfer policies over the years. But this is probably the most lame I've heard.
27 Posted 12/04/2011 at 14:27:26
Mark Hughes clearly had his eye on him already, as did Moyes, and loads of other manages probably did. Moyes has been known to take gems but it's not because Moyes gets there first. Look at Cahill, he nearly signed for Crystal Palace before we got him. Vellios and Gueye more recent examples, the former wanted by Olympiakos, Villa and some Italian clubs, and the latter being wanted by Lyon.
Moyes clearly has his ways of getting players, but being the first and getting imprints of hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades on his chest is not why at all.
28 Posted 12/04/2011 at 15:44:00
I think the Terminator got him Lee!
29 Posted 12/04/2011 at 21:26:41
Win some; lose some... the guy's not even signed for Fulham and at 16, only has potential ? nothing else. I am not the biggest Moyes fan but let's keep things a bit realistic.
Jon O'Connor joined Sheff United in 1998, then retired a few years later due to glandular fever problems ? he hardly played any games due to injury.
30 Posted 12/04/2011 at 22:46:24
31 Posted 13/04/2011 at 04:27:52
Or perhaps David plays a more special interest fantasy football game than most and had checked out the form only to be turned onto the fact that this 6-ft 6-in beast could actually play a bit?
Arsenal's scouting system could be described as simply based on the idea that you simply need as many kids on the books as possible... perhaps that just stems from Wenger driving around in his child catching van (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang style being sinister enough).
Then again Al Fayed does have an increasing resemblance to The Penguin and old 'Two Face' Hughes never really lived down making himself look like a cock over the Lescott purchase... so maybe he did just read it in the press.
32 Posted 13/04/2011 at 23:31:19
I know I'm nit-picking here, but just because Lescott was from a Chamionship club, he wasn't as cheap as some would lead you to believe.
Turned out to be a great bit of business though for more than one reason... luckily.
33 Posted 15/04/2011 at 11:44:31
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.