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A view from across the sea

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As this is my first mail bag, let me introduce myself. I have been supporting Everton since 1969 and unfortunately, while I can?t explain why I began my fascination with the club, I can explain why I continue to support Everton today. The "People's Club" best defines it; it?s the values the club espouses, the tradition and heritage of the club, the love of the club by the fans, players, former players, management etc. I?ve been visiting this website for years now and love it so much that it?s my home page!

If Everton were taken over by a billionaire, even though I know this is the wish of many ToffeeWeb readers, I would be appalled. I look on in horror at what?s happening at Man City and regard it as a form of cheating, as it is at Chelsea. Money is destroying the Premier League, but at least this recession is leading to a more level playing field. Now don?t get me wrong, like everyone else, I want Everton to win silverware, it?s just that I don?t want them to buy their way there.

One of my brothers is a big Chelsea fan and I?m always going on to him about Everton, Chelsea, the Premier League in a similar manner that I?ve just done in the opening paragraphs to this article. On Saturday he told me about an article about ?my beloved Toffees?, to quote his words, appearing in the Irish Times written by Michael Walker. Obviously it was written before the disappointing Blackburn match, but the opinions are still valid and it probably says it better than I?ve been trying to do! It?s another view point and I hope you enjoy it. As always I await the many varied comments that I?m sure will arise!

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/sport/2010/0814/1224276818206.html
Gerry O'Riordan, Dublin, Ireland     Posted 16/08/2010 at 10:24:50

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Kevin Hudson
1   Posted 16/08/2010 at 13:51:41

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Nice article that Gerry. Good to see the club getting positive coverage on the Emerald Isle,as seemingly we have so many fans out there.

Genuine admiration for,and understanding of how we go about things at EFC is something to be proud of.
Ciarán McGlone
2   Posted 16/08/2010 at 14:54:59

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It would've been nice if the Walker article had given some thought to our actually playing capabilities.

It's not actually an analysis of what we could do this season, and why, but rather a desperate plea for change...
Robert Moore
3   Posted 16/08/2010 at 17:33:04

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Also Tony Casarino was on the radio last friday over here in Ireland doing a radio interview about the new season, he tips Everton to finish in the top 4 its great to see people are starting to notice Everton. Forget about Saturday's result ? onward and upwared from now on. COYB
Des Farren
4   Posted 16/08/2010 at 19:41:22

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As one who has followed Everton for a little longer than yourself, Gerry, I don't recall any suggestion of a People's Club 10 years earlier.

In those days we were trying to buy the First Division title with the help of John Moores to the utter disgust of Sunday Telegraph columnist Danny Blanchflower. My recollection of why I started supporting Everton is, like yours, hazy... although they were probably the most popular team in Dublin at that time.

Eugene Ruane
5   Posted 16/08/2010 at 20:19:00

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Des I also remember when we were the Millionaires but there is a huge difference between then and now.

Basically I believe that difference is one of scale.

Back then, when the top teams were in the running for say a Latchford, we would have been among the favourites to get him.

And Maybe a Dobbo as well.

But remember, with them there were Daracott, Lyons, Tiger McLaughlin, Jim Pearson, Telfer etc etc.

What we COULDN'T do (like Chelsea and City have) is buy a squad of 25 Latchfords (so to speak...actually that's a truly weird mental image).

It certainly wasn't a perfectly fair but system, but compared to now it was a model of equality.

Most of the revenue of every club came through the gates and if we had bigger gates than most, it would have been (and was) hard to argue that money should be shared equally.

Maybe we had a slight financial advantage then, but it wasn't the advantage Chelsea have.

If it was we'd have won more

Am I sure of that?

Well not 100% sure, but remember Chelsea hadn't won a title in 60 years.

A billionaire shows up, they poach the best manager in Europe and give him unlimited funds.

Result - two titles on the bounce and another a couple of years later

And remember, the gap in the 60's and 70's certainly wasn't so great that our horrible scruffy neighbours couldn't compete.

I agree with Gerry that what City and Chelsea have done is a form of cheating and believe that it is allowed, is near-sighted in the extreme.

I predicted a few years back that watching the same couple of wealthy teams win over and over and over, would eventually make non 'big four' (big three, big two, whatever) spectators think "what IS the fucking point?".

It hasn't happened yet, but I think figures HAVE dropped in the past two seasons and only looked 'respectable' coz United and Arsenal added 40,000 a week between them

What I DO know is that when many televised games in 'the best league in the world' there are often quite a few grounds that have huge sections of empty seats (EG: Boro when they were in the PL, Blackburn, Bolton, Wolves etc).

Personally I can think of nothing I'd like to see more than Sky and the PL go tits (and belly) up.

That's the only way I can see of getting back to starting a season and being able to think we have a REALISTIC chance of winning the title.
Des Farren
6   Posted 16/08/2010 at 21:19:23

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Eugene,wouldn't disagree with anything you said...it is of course a matter of scale tho it also brought considerable success.
If memory serves might have been Pickering?
Eugene Ruane
7   Posted 16/08/2010 at 22:52:20

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It did bring success Des, but at least the other teams in the League could start each season feeling they were in with a chance of winning the title and with some justification

Between 1960 and 1970 there were (incredibly) 7 different winners of the league (with us, United and 'them' winning two each). In the past 10 years it's been just three and Arsenal (who won two) seem to be getting further away.
Will Leaf
8   Posted 16/08/2010 at 23:51:18

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1970 is quite interesting. At that point the number of League Championships won by the top clubs was a close run thing. Everton, Liverpool, Man Utd, Arsenal all had 7 championships, with Sunderland and Villa on 6.

Soon after Liverpool started on their dominance...just look how long it took Man Utd to draw level.

Far more interesting when no-one had a clue who was going to win the League.
Brendan O'Doherty
9   Posted 17/08/2010 at 01:37:46

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While we are reminiscing, 1981 was also interesting when Villa, ipswich and I think it was Sunderland were all in the hunt for the title on the last day of the season.

Interesting days, now long gone and it looks like they are never going to come back.
Ron Marr
10   Posted 17/08/2010 at 05:32:11

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One of the first games I remember watching on tv was Burnley playing Hamburg in the European Cup! The first season I started going to Goodison we won the league (62-63) and I was lucky enough to be there for the clincher (Fulham). Not bad for a 9-year-old (at the time). I had my Roy Vernon shirt... life was grand.

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