With an International week ahead of us and anticlimactic transfer window behind us (I did watch the countdown on SSN, Mr Round, and all I got was the most annoying idiots in studio waiting for Big Ben to chime). I started to think about our limp starts we seem to have each season. A case of failing to prepare... or preparing to fail?
What puzzles me is the constant choosing of lower league opposition and, what I see is, substandard preseason teams. Maybe someone else on here has covered this, but can someone explain to me why, while we?re playing the mighty Melbourne Heart, our rivals are playing top quality opposition?
Here's a list of the teams from preseason on the OS (granted some of the games were just the reserves)
Preston North End
The only decent team in that whole list is Steve McClaren's Wolfsburg, and we lost that 2-0!
As a build up this season,
? Man City played Inter, Borussia Dortmund and Valencia
? Spurs played Villarreal and Fiorentina
? Liverpoool played Grasshopper Zurich,Kaiserslautern and Borussia Monchengladbach
? Villa played Valencia, Feyenoord and Benfica.
All top opposition and enough to give the players a taste of what?s to come.
I can understand one or two lower league teams at the start to welcome the players back to the pitch and get fitness levels up but why a full preseason of them? I know the Oz tour was probably more to do with marketing than getting good match time under our belts against other top players, but surely games against top European teams is required.
I?d prefer to be losing to top opposition, than getting meaningless victories over lesser teams. You can learn more from defeat then victory.
Am I seeing this from too a simplistic view point? If it seems this obvious to me, why not Everton and David Moyes!...or am I missing something??
David McKitt, Posted 01/09/2010 at 11:54:13
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1 Posted 01/09/2010 at 14:15:40
However, I'm begininng to wonder if David doesn't have some sort of messianic complex, and refuses to see the blindingly obvious unless some clever person can present it to him as being HIS idea from the start.
I wonder if Bill, as his employer, hasn't fawned over him just that little bit too much.
These woeful starts to the season need to be examined thoroughly and not written off as "just one of those things".
2 Posted 01/09/2010 at 14:18:42
3 Posted 01/09/2010 at 14:25:08
The problem with our "slow" start is the unfathomable team selections in the first 3 games... I'm no manager but...
4 Posted 01/09/2010 at 14:39:03
I truely believe we will improve but not enough to finish top eight, look at Sunderland spending £13 mill on a 24-year-old striker, Stoke with Gudjonnson and Pennant, Birmingham with Hleb (how did we miss that one?) and suddenly reality bites.
Should we have beaten Villa? Yes, but them having played a European tie one day after our League Cup win, it should have been at least a point gained, but no... Villa? ? hold on, were they better conditioned? Who knows?
Should we have made a real effort to get a striker on loan instead of Beckford and Silva? Without doubt, yes; the Yak is overweight; Saha is just showing glimpses; Vaughan enough said... If we can't score goals then we have no chance of a climb up the table.
I am dreading the next two games as I only see 1 point gained, the gap to the fourth bottom could be 4-5 points... remind you of Tottenham two years ago ???
5 Posted 01/09/2010 at 15:25:40
6 Posted 01/09/2010 at 15:28:02
7 Posted 01/09/2010 at 15:39:47
My little lad goes up to 11-a-side this season. They have played 3 friendlies up to now, the first they won 15-2, it was a stroll in the park, the second they won 8-0, again easy.
The third was against a team who they played last season when it was 7-a-side and who were decent, we won it 7-5, but the lads came off knackered, as they had to put more into the game to win it. Surely that's the purpose of playing pre-season games, to be given a good work-out.
8 Posted 01/09/2010 at 15:45:32
It's all well and good going to America or Australia, but this must be tallied with some testing games in a mini-tournament, especially if this is what our rivals (namely City and Arsenal) are doing. They have flown out of the blocks, while we are still in 2nd gear. If we are to finish in the top 4 in future, that is one of the things we have to improve on...
9 Posted 01/09/2010 at 15:46:54
Granted we have some class players now but we fall short when it comes to tactical nous.
We have started the season the way we finished last season, very inconsistent. Until we start playing to our players' strengths we will always be not good enough.
10 Posted 01/09/2010 at 16:33:41
We have already tried three different players.
11 Posted 01/09/2010 at 16:48:50
12 Posted 01/09/2010 at 16:54:10
? Spurs played Villarreal and Fiorentina - Just been beaten by Wigan who were bottom of the league
? Liverpoool played Grasshopper Zurich,Kaiserslautern and Borussia Monchengladbach - Trounced by Citteh, just got their first win beating a mighty West Brom 1-0
? Villa played Valencia, Feyenoord and Benfica - Got laced by a newly promoted side 6-0 and out of Europe. First win against us!!
Sorry your point being?
13 Posted 01/09/2010 at 19:25:23
14 Posted 01/09/2010 at 19:34:04
15 Posted 01/09/2010 at 19:53:48
We started the summer of 1984 by taking part in a four club tournament in Geneva.
We beat Swiss side, Servette on penalties.
We lost 1-0 to Brazilian side, Botafago.
We then beat Swiss side, St Gallen 1-0.
We then moved on to Greece, where we beat Olympiakos 3-0.
We rounded pre-season off with a 1-0 win over Liverpool at Wembley in the Charity Shield.
We then bounced into the season, full of optimism... before promptly getting thrashed 4-1 at home to Spurs, then losing 2-1 away at West Brom the following week.
16 Posted 01/09/2010 at 22:47:32
17 Posted 01/09/2010 at 23:15:35
Spurs are in the group stages of the CL and have 4 points - City are in the group stages of EL and have 4 points as are Liverpool.
18 Posted 01/09/2010 at 23:16:46
You have to admit that the examples given by David, were...well,let's be honest,... a bit shit really if he was trying to prove a point.
19 Posted 01/09/2010 at 23:51:22
Spurs got into the Champions League qualifiers through last seasons play, as did the RedShite with the Europa League or are you suggesting that Youngboys are a "big" name now?
20 Posted 02/09/2010 at 00:50:11
The quality of the opposition must be a factor because we almost never play substantial opposition and every season seems like it comes 2 months too early for Everton. It's not so much that we beat big teams, more that we are simply in the right frame of mind to play them.
I was worried that, after disposing of a raft of inferior teams, for our final pre-season game against Wolfsburg we didn't just lose it, we didn't even turn up for it. Frankly, for a team with CL aspirations (and even outsiders for the title) that performance was utterly unacceptable, yet all too predictable.
And, surprise surprise, this lethargy or staleness or lack of sharpness or whatever it is, carried forward into the Blackburn game. Even now, after 68% possession against Villa, we have thrown away 8 points from just 3 games and all in games we should really have won.
The result of other teams frankly doesn't interest me. I'm more concerned that this shit happens to us every August & September. When you miss out on the CL by 9 points, it's not too clever to be dropping 8 points in the first 3 games.
Wherever we end up this season, there is unarguably something wrong with the way Moyes prepares the squad for the season. I suggest the difficulty of our pre season games, as they are also the same every year, is part of the problem. Losing 2-0 to Wolfsburg, but more importantly playing so utterly shite, 1 week before the season, bears this out.
It's not about pretty football or possession, it's about intensity and sharpness. Almost all of our competitors have more of it than we do every August & September.
My support for Moyes is qualified. Two areas that need desperate improvement are pre season and selecting players in their best positions (or playing the best formation for the players we have).
I desperately hoped, and even expected, this season would begin differently. It hasn't. Frankly the same signs are there as always. I hope to be wrong, but I now don't anticipate Everton reaching full operating temperature until October, and possibly later.
21 Posted 02/09/2010 at 06:20:26
22 Posted 02/09/2010 at 06:50:30
No, Everton for me have lacked an integrated / cohesive team display and match fitness (mentally) Its as though they are still working our who plays where and what their jobs are.
It looked better against Aston Villa but the goal conceded was a lack of positional awareness in the back line and communication with each other.
The point was made about over training, well I think more time is needed in preparing / understanding the team requirements on matchday and awareness of each others roles.
Its like watching a team thats never played together before, so more time on coaching and tactics that running required??
23 Posted 02/09/2010 at 10:08:31
24 Posted 02/09/2010 at 10:49:08
If we were playing hoofball and won all 3 games 1-0, there'd still be discontent.
25 Posted 02/09/2010 at 12:24:25
26 Posted 02/09/2010 at 12:33:35
27 Posted 02/09/2010 at 12:46:00
28 Posted 02/09/2010 at 12:53:27
I believe it's a mix of never really having any proper singings before the seasons gets underway, ie Fellaini, Yakubu, must have an effect on the players. The Chile game was a decent idea for sentimentlaity purposes but really we could've won about 9-0 if we'd taken our chances.
I think a better idea would be to play someone like Ajax away from home as we're guaranteed to get about 1000 supporters travelling over, me included, as I can never afford to go to European away games. Also, a decent team like AJax would give Everton a good test and would introduce us to different styles of football.
29 Posted 02/09/2010 at 13:29:16
Players should not need to play against world beaters to know the concept of effective football. Even I know it and I hung up my boots many moons ago
30 Posted 02/09/2010 at 16:23:19
31 Posted 02/09/2010 at 17:15:59
32 Posted 02/09/2010 at 18:40:58
Blackburn, hard place to get a result and but for a fuck-up by Howard would have been a draw. Wolves we should have won in the first 20 mins then another fuck-up by Johny & Saha cost us the points. Villa again very hard place to go and even more so after their twatting the week before, played well but another fuck-up by Screech and another loss.
The common denominator is not who we play pre-season, although I agree it doesn't help, is FUCK-UPs by our senior players; everyone does it, it's just happened in our last 3 games and cost us points, maybe we're getting them out of the way now ready for when we twat Manure, which I have no doubt we will. [Or was that my fuck up?]
33 Posted 02/09/2010 at 21:32:46
Fair point. I mean if we had warmed up against shite like that our start to the season would have been woeful. Thank God for that final friendly against Wolfsburg....it certainly made all the difference!
34 Posted 03/09/2010 at 13:16:09
35 Posted 04/09/2010 at 04:01:19
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