After Saturday's game I suspect we'll be back to debating the relative merits of David Moyes. In the meantime, Michael's blog got me thinking about who has been the most important player for us in the Premier League era.
For me, it has to be Kevin Campbell.
When he arrived on loan, it was at a time when I was looking ahead at the fixtures of every relegation candidate and wondering where the points to save us would come from. Kevin saved us.
Nine goals in eight games at a club ebbing confidence was, to me, as good as anything he did in his career. He was the right man at the right time. I saw him quite a few times and liked his attitude, he seemed to me to be the epitome of a team player.
To some extent, injury blighted his stay at Goodison Park but, to me, he was a hero. If he were ten years younger, he is exactly the striker we need now.
Andy Crooks, Posted 08/09/2010 at 21:44:20
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1 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:36:37
2 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:43:13
3 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:44:45
Also, has there been anyone since? I would imagine a couple of the players Moyes has brought in on loan before buying them could have won the award before securing a contract.
4 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:37:57
You could argue that Tim Cahill has been the most important due to his goalscoring ability and the fact that he fits the Moyes system perfectly.
Lee Carsley was a great asset. I don't think we would've gotten 4th in 04-05 without him.
Arteta is arguably the most skilled player to have played for Everton in the Premier league.
But how can you argue against Neville Southall? One of the best goalkeepers ever and truly an Everton legend. Played something like 700 games for us before transferring, that's a true servant to the club.
5 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:53:31
6 Posted 08/09/2010 at 22:57:11
At times it seemed he single handedly kept us in the Prem. Not to mention his contribution to the FA Cup win as well. Not just in the Final, I will never forget his goal against Newcastle Utd in the Quarter's.
7 Posted 08/09/2010 at 23:00:16
I'm with Pat re: Lee Carsley, a total unsung hero, the rock on which those successes were built.
Playing devils advocate given the money we recieved for him you'd have to bring Mr Rooney into the debate though. Oh no.... here we go again...
Good post, Andy. Nice one.
8 Posted 08/09/2010 at 23:05:01
Or maybe that other player who received awful stick from the bigots around me in the then Enclosure - Kevin Sheedy.
9 Posted 08/09/2010 at 23:07:49
10 Posted 08/09/2010 at 23:10:32
11 Posted 08/09/2010 at 23:10:38
12 Posted 09/09/2010 at 00:00:23
Also scored our last winning goal at Anfield, sadly TEN years ago..
13 Posted 09/09/2010 at 00:06:44
If I may make a quick comment on today's main headline; I reckon Fellaini will stay in midfield as Moyes is more likely to pick Rodwell and Cahill. I would be happy if this transpires if Saha and Yakubu are ruled out.
14 Posted 09/09/2010 at 00:11:37
15 Posted 09/09/2010 at 02:13:40
16 Posted 09/09/2010 at 02:41:11
For all the disappoinment surrounding his career after this season, I believe without him that season we would have gone down.
17 Posted 09/09/2010 at 04:44:18
Now right away I should say that I'm DEFINITELY not one of those people who view Duncan through blue tinted specs - in fact, quite the reverse.
I never doubted his ability but thought he wasted it.
In fact I actually grew believe he really disliked like being a professional footballer and would rather have been doing anything else (and would have been, but for the £40,000 a week)
Often his attitude stunk and his behaviour at times bordered on the psychotic.
Too many times he left us a man short through being needlessly sent off and because of suspensions, reduced our team selection options.
He smoked, drank and for the money he was on, in my opinion, took the piss.
But the question was the 'most important' and I believe he was that.
Basically, because he kept a whole generation of younger blues interested and gave them something to believe in when there was fuck-all else for them to get worked up over.
He was someone in a blue shirt that they actually loved (and always will) and whatever I think about his consistency or professionalism, his love of Everton and Evertonians seemed (and seems) genuine.
I fully understand the reaction of younger blues to the opinions of fellers of 'my generation' who moaned about Ferguson and pointed out his many flaws
When I used to rave about Latchford, my oul' feller's two word summing up of my hero ("a puddin'") used to drive me nuts.
Alan Ball in reality was probably a narky, opinionated little tory, but in my mind, he's like a cross between Pelé and St Francis of Assisi (Bally could have had a swastika tattooed on his forehead and I'd have made excuses for him).
Arteta (to an extent) is performing this service now for the post-Duncan generation.
Evertonians of every generation need their heros and Duncan was/is theirs.
The importance of this can't be underestimated.
So for me (despite..er..me), it's Duncan.....DUNCAN FER-GU-SON!
18 Posted 09/09/2010 at 09:27:28
You just said exactly what I was about to say. For my generation he was the only thing worth talking about. The players that kept us up all those times when our club was in serious peril must surely rate as most important, only because we may well be a Sheff Wed type club without thier contribution.
19 Posted 09/09/2010 at 09:28:42
Kept us up with both hands in 2003-04 and was superb again when we finished 4th in 2004-05
Best Keeper since big Nev and defo our "most important" Prem player when you see what he did for us.
Wish we had signed him in 96 but thats' Clifford Finch/Peter Johnson for yer!!
20 Posted 09/09/2010 at 09:41:58
21 Posted 09/09/2010 at 09:44:01
Okay, I will agree he wasn't a 25-goal-a-season goalscorer, or a flying winger, but his signing made me feel that we would only improve.
22 Posted 09/09/2010 at 10:05:01
I must concur, he certainly saved us and was for me a hero.
I met him a few times after he left us and he was really easy to talk to. I got his autograph and gave it to my son, making sure it was treasured.
23 Posted 09/09/2010 at 10:03:09
As with Stephen Kenny, apart from the past few years, I grew up with us being shite, and he was the one who gave us so many inspired moments and was definitely a big game player.
In fact, as well as saving us from the drop, his bullet header against Man Utd in 04-05 practically assured us of 4th that year.
I will never forget that game ? words simply cannot describe the atmosphere.
24 Posted 09/09/2010 at 10:53:09
25 Posted 09/09/2010 at 11:13:10
Anybody remember his return with Sunderland for a final day game. He got a standing ovation when he started warming up, another when he came on as a sub, and another when he got sent off.
26 Posted 09/09/2010 at 11:44:40
It's telling that there are quite a few nominations for players who have saved us... and the goalkeepers, a comment on our recent history. Maybe that will change soon. This time next year, how about "it must be Jermaine Beckford after his Cup Final hat-trick".
27 Posted 09/09/2010 at 12:13:42
Notable mentions to Ferguson, Arteta, D Watson, Weir, Kanchleskis.
28 Posted 09/09/2010 at 12:51:27
29 Posted 09/09/2010 at 12:32:02
30 Posted 09/09/2010 at 12:56:38
Rob, next step, mate, is best Everton Prem side, do you want to set it up?
31 Posted 09/09/2010 at 13:00:06
I was at that game at Goodison when Hutch was sent of and I can remember thinking that he deliberately got himself sent of to help us. When he walked of the pitch, he held his hands above his head, applauded our supporters and gave a smile in the direction of the directors' seats. Myself and my brother were in the upper tier of the main stand and everyone stood to applaud.
Another thing I can remember is the Sunderland fans were quite vocal and I think it ended as a draw. A dissapointing day as we were expected to win yet seeing the affection Hutch still had for our fans and vice versa, it all seemed worth it.
32 Posted 09/09/2010 at 13:57:04
My view of him soured near the end, the sight if his Hasslebaink-like arse turning ever so slowly for the ball then falling over looking for a non-penalty.
His last interview where he said he would take 17th in a heartbeat after the 4-1 drubbing by Arsenal still gets my goat up. Shipped out shortly after that comment.
Ferguson was a hero to me, as we were dire but he give us something to cling to and cheer, when he actually played.
Martyn was fantastic but slow getting down near the end and conceded a lot of goals with low shots across his body.
Stubbs was an inspiration too and I am made up he is back working within the club.
Out of all of them, the most important one to me would probably be Martyn, because he actually saved us so many points. I will never forget the Bolton game when we lost the other 9 from our first 10. Absolute stormer of a game and the Derby at Anfield where he saved absolutely everything and we managed a 0-0 draw. Hero in my eyes.
33 Posted 09/09/2010 at 14:41:18
34 Posted 09/09/2010 at 15:41:44
Campbell would be near the top due to his impact. Lee Carsley is tremendously underrated for the role he played in our revival recently. And, to be fair, Duncan Ferguson deserves a mention for making the horrible 90s bearable.
35 Posted 09/09/2010 at 15:41:33
36 Posted 09/09/2010 at 16:33:39
37 Posted 09/09/2010 at 17:40:42
Mention his name if you want to see RS and Manu fans shiver.
38 Posted 09/09/2010 at 18:14:33
39 Posted 09/09/2010 at 22:26:05
40 Posted 09/09/2010 at 23:16:00
Mean-spirited post ? a bit kettle, pot, black going on there!
41 Posted 10/09/2010 at 10:12:16
I'm delighted to give Graham Stuart a very honourable mention too.
42 Posted 10/09/2010 at 12:23:36
43 Posted 10/09/2010 at 12:54:34
My first ever game at Goodison (25 Feb 1995) when he scored the header that beat Man Utd one-nil was one of the finest footballing performances I've ever witnessed. Today, if we had Dunc playing like he did that day and Kanchelskis flying down the right, we'd be league champions without doubt!
44 Posted 10/09/2010 at 18:25:24
Kev, what a game for your first match.
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