Once again I read recently (the Echo match report, v Stoke) about the present set of players being the best assembled since the mighty 84-85 side, but is it?
I believe Joe Royle's squad 94-96 was better ? in fact they won the FA Cup in 95 and finished 6th in 96; also in 94 he picked the team up from bottom of the table and eased them out of relegation comfortably. If you picked a composite side from the two eras, Joe's team would have the most players in it: 4-4-2 (I ain't David Moyes but if it mean leaving out Tiny Tim so be it)
Gaz Cass, Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:28:35
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1 Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:39:23
2 Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:42:31
He may have got the winning goal but in the grand scheme of things rideout was crap!!
3 Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:46:51
4 Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:48:39
5 Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:43:09
I think if you looked at the whole first team squad from 94-96 and the present day squad i don't think many people would side with Royles squad.
Neville Southall, Jason Kearton, Earl Barrett, Andy Hinchcliffe, David Unsworth, Dave Watson, Marc Hottiger, Craig Short, Jon O'Connor, Graham Allen, John Ebbrell, Matthew Jackson, Vinny Samways, Joe Parkinson, Tony Grant,
Graham Stuart, Paul Rideout, Duncan Ferguson, Anders Limpar, Daniel Amokachi, Andrei Kanchelskis,
Would you really want to have the above squad available for this saturday compared to the current one?
6 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:21:57
Our present squad is stronger than probably any squad from the past. Good 11 though Gaz, and I would include Rideout, he was fantastic once he found form. But Hinchcliffe for Baines, no chance!
Also, you have omitted the future England captain, and the best midfielder of a generation: Our Jack.
7 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:36:31
Not that h'd trouble the initial debate.
8 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:36:31
Not that he'd trouble the initial debate.
9 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:36:31
Not that he'd trouble the initial debate.
10 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:46:03
11 Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:51:11
12 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:02:29
It is very interesting when you watch old matches. Even those from the mid 90's are slow and pedestrian compared to the matches we have now.
I'm going to stick my neck out and say that this current lot would even give the 85 team a go......
Football has moved on massively.....
13 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:24:31
Hinchcliffe could give Baines a run for his money.
Kanchelskis and Limpar would be better than Bily and Osman.
Other than that I can't say any of them would come close. The side of today would of been challenging for the title in the mid 90's. The improvement to the Premier League since then is vast.
14 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:28:02
Yeah your right i think Barry Horne was there. I think Abblett and Barlow could be added to the list as well.
15 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:32:29
16 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:46:51
17 Posted 04/11/2010 at 23:47:22
1995/1996 season - yes, we had a good season. Finished 6th, would have qualified Europe but for UEFA punishing English clubs by taking away a European place for that season because Spurs and Wimbledon played under-strength teams in the Intertoto the previous summer. But even that season was marred by the poor European campaign (knocked out in the 2nd round by Feyenoord) and embarrasing FA Cup exit courtesy of Port Vale. The following season (96/97) was even worse, culminating in an embarrasing FA Cup defeat for the 2nd successive season (Bradford) and then Royle's sacking by Johnson.
The Royle era team had one decent league season, and outside of the FA Cup win, a few memorable one-off games, but that is it really. Apart from maybe Kanchelskis and Speed, there was little real quality. Southall and Watson were at the end of their careers, multiple journeyman fullbacks were used, we bought a few poor midfielders that never cut the mustard, and up front was the same story too.
With the current team, we have quality and strength-in-depth. Bonafide internationals and experienced pros in most positions. Guys you can rely on, like Cahill. Arteta and Pienaar pulling the strings. Yak and Saha, in their pomp and when fit, capable of scoring against anyone. To name just a few. The current team is far better, and when you think back to the dross before Moyes, and keep going further and further back, it really is the best team/squad we've had since the mid to late 1980s.
18 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:02:19
Some of our regulars from that era (Amokachi, Ebrell, Samways, Barrett) would struggle to get into a Championship side. I'd take Kanchelskis and Southall, and Ferguson as a sub (yes, really).
Even our title-winning sides from 85 and 87 would get utterly destroyed by present-day Chelsea.
19 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:14:13
Cahill would be the first, second and third player picked in the team of 95 Gaz.
20 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:15:03
I agree with the general sentiment that cup win aside, that wasn't a great team - nor was it capable of playing quality football on a regular basis. I feel that he odd glimpse of magic from the likes of Limpar and Kanchelskis probably masked what an unattractive team it was to watch generally. They weren't labelled the "Dogs of War" for nothing!
21 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:27:58
22 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:26:57
I have no idea where this 'best since 85' thing started but (like the pre-season's 'we're gonna win the league' nonsense) it seems if you repeat stuff often enough, some will start to see it as fact.
I can't say they would have beaten the present side for definite, but I think 'the dogs of war' were at least as good as today's blues and winning the cup final against United (and the semi against a much fancied Spurs) can't just be dismissed.
23 Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:28:59
The next season, we signed Kanchelskis and he would provide what we desperately need now, a direct right-sided player with pace to burn; besides that, there is no comparison.
Hinchcliffe had a great corner but his all-round game had nothing on Baines. I agree Watson over Distin. It would be a close call, Limpar over Pienaar, but for the fact that Pienaar is much more consistent. Southall was past his best and no better that Howard is now. The rest of the current first team is massively superior and we actually have a squad when fully fit (admittedly not very often).
The 95 team actually won something; however, as a team we are far better now.
24 Posted 05/11/2010 at 01:29:51
Nonetheless we shouldn't downplay the players' performance under Joe Royle, not least because he never lost a Derby match!
I must also point out that Simon Jenkins's critique of the League performance in 94-95 merits further comment. When Royle took over from Walker, Everton had just 9 points from the first 14 matches, form that would have equated to 27 points over the season & left us equal bottom with Ipswich Town.
Under Royle, Everton gained a further 41 points from the remaining 28 games, which would have equated to 61.5 points over the whole season & had us finishing in 8th place. So the League form under Royle was pretty consistent from his appointment through to the end of the 95-96 season.
25 Posted 05/11/2010 at 02:08:44
26 Posted 05/11/2010 at 02:23:54
27 Posted 05/11/2010 at 03:48:43
The only players from that squad that would get anywhere near this squad are big Nev, Joe Parkinson and Kanchelskis.
You might make an argument for Graham Stuart replacing Tiny but IMO this squad is the best since 1987.
28 Posted 05/11/2010 at 04:24:49
29 Posted 05/11/2010 at 08:39:53
We now have 7 or 8 quality players that other teams want in their teams. We are a threat to most teams ? maybe Chelsea aside. This is definitely the best team we have had for many years and that shows in consistent top-eight finishes. One cup and a top 6 finish does not make them a better team than today's. Now go and watch another re run of Dad's Army or Last of the Summer Wine...
30 Posted 05/11/2010 at 08:35:00
As for the teams, the current squad would beat Joe Royle's team quite comfortably in my opinion. Football has moved on hugely since then. Despite the changes though, I reckon the mid-eighties team would give them more than a game!
Never underestimate Joe Royle's team though. After a disastrous start under Walker, they were actually one of the most consistent teams in the league.
31 Posted 05/11/2010 at 09:25:00
I believe we are in the best shape since late 80s, but certainly no better than the 86, 87, 88 and possibly 89-90 team. How can we be better now than the title winning team in 86-87???
32 Posted 05/11/2010 at 09:35:52
Just because of how the 86 season ended it does not mean they weren't a good team.
33 Posted 05/11/2010 at 12:58:42
I am comfortable with all the players mentioned, as I am old enough to comment on the late 50s onwards. But it still brings back great memories of the players of yesteryear.
34 Posted 05/11/2010 at 13:23:41
Overall, there's no comparison, the current team are way, way better. I think they'd win 2-0 or 3-0 if they could keep Kanchelskis quiet. Our current team is crying out for Kanchelskis, otherwise I wouldn't have anyone else I don't think, except possibly Southall, and the core of the team, the central midfield, practically play a different sport to Horne, Ebbrell and Parkinson (who, don't get me wrong, are all heroes in their own way, but lack the quality of Arteta, Fellaini, Rodwell and even Cahill).
ps: Must mention, Pienaar over Limpar all day every day as well.
35 Posted 05/11/2010 at 13:30:54
I don't think that Watson has the athleticism of Distin or Yobo and would struggle in today's game.
Back to the original point: you can't compare Joe Royle's success with Moyes's, there are far better teams currently (Chelsea, Utd, Liverpool, Arsenal, Spurs, City, Villa, us) than there were back then!
36 Posted 05/11/2010 at 13:58:58
Today's Everton are streets ahead of the team of the mid-90s. Admittedly I'd have Joe Parkinson in any team of any Everton generation ever.
37 Posted 05/11/2010 at 15:07:09
Hintchliffe and Ferguson would make the squad, probably.
38 Posted 05/11/2010 at 15:06:46
The season I'm talking about is they year we unluckily got knocked out by Fiorentina on penalties, finished 5th in the league and got to the Semi Final of the Carling Cup. We've stalled since then in my opinion, partly down to both our lack of investment and the money Moyes has spent on players like Bilyaletdinov, Fellaini, Distin and Heitinga (who was bought as a right back, is now playing midfield when it is clear to everyone he is a centre back!)
39 Posted 05/11/2010 at 15:29:48
However, in the new context of today's squad I think that the overall strengths and weaknesses create an average level of quality that is slightly higher than a few years ago. This quality has yet to swim to the surface for various reasons.
Fellaini and Arteta, because of consistent coincedental injuries, still haven't formed an effective partnership. I suppose Bily and Coleman will have to wait until Cahill and Neville retire before they fully develop their talents and, hopefully, command a starting place.
Rodwell will emerge as a world class player.
Of course you're right about Heitinga. My fear is that he and Pienaar will leave simultaneously.
40 Posted 05/11/2010 at 15:58:21
41 Posted 05/11/2010 at 16:41:34
There are many player-by-player comparisons being made to justify the present squad as being better.
A mistake in my opinion.
For most of my life Spurs have bought 'good players' yet have not come near winning a title.
Yet if you had compared Spurs to Everton at the start of 84 - 85, many (player by player) would have gone for Spurs (myself included probably).
Fact is TEAMS win things, great players only do if their part of a team.
Consequently, who is 'better' than who doesn't work for me
Being the best team won us titles in 85 and 87 - not having 'the best' players.
Just an opinion.
42 Posted 05/11/2010 at 18:10:33
Nevertheless there were some 'great' players in their own right. Bracewell to name but one....Trevor Steven another. But none of them instantly recognizable as great players on a world stage.
43 Posted 05/11/2010 at 18:16:29
The 84-87 lads were certainly the most consistently successful and that's a good reason for considering them as the best ever... but the 62-63 team were some team too and the best football I have ever seen Everton teams play was between 67 and 70... the era of the holy trinity.
I still have (somewhere) a whole back page from the People newspaper which I framed after one game in 1968. The whole page was taken up by the headline (in 3-inch black letters)...
They were truly a great side.
44 Posted 05/11/2010 at 18:26:28
Sigh... those were the days!
45 Posted 05/11/2010 at 18:48:51
When he was in charge, he had us changing from stuggling to challenging at just the right time. Some may argue, myself included that 1996 was the last chance before football in the UK started to lean more toward the 'money-men' and the gulf between the 'have's' and 'have-not's' became so noticeable.
Had Royle been allowed by the board, to invest a reasonably modest amount (even by standards at the time), on Tore Andre Flo and Claus Lundekvam - who both went on to have decent careers in England - I think Everton would have gone from strength to strength. Who knows where we might have ended up.
Yet, like so many times before and since, the board dropped the ball and we have been left in obscurity ever since.
46 Posted 05/11/2010 at 19:40:21
Watching the Stoke game, what struck me is our aimless corner taking. The delivery seems to be lobbed into the box, with no-one looking like powering a header in.
We can't rely on a naff RS heading one out to Mikel every week. It was then I remembered Hinchcliffe's corners. The best left footer since Sheedy, strangley though, did Andy ever score for us?
47 Posted 05/11/2010 at 20:59:36
48 Posted 05/11/2010 at 20:56:27
Andy Hinchcliffe played over 200 games for us and scored on 9 occasions, acccording to the OS anyway!!
I would always pick big Nev in any Everton side of the 90's and as mentioned by others Kanchelskis and Parkinson would feature in my 18 man match day squad. Limpar, Ferguson and Unsworth would be in the running too.
49 Posted 05/11/2010 at 23:25:25
50 Posted 05/11/2010 at 23:25:50
51 Posted 06/11/2010 at 12:41:25
52 Posted 07/11/2010 at 03:01:25
In the big games, when the pressure is on and the result is of real significance, Everton under David Moyes have consistently failed to deliver. Until they actually land a trophy they can't be lauded as anything other than also-rans.
53 Posted 07/11/2010 at 05:30:52
We maybe wouldn't 've got to the state where Moyes looked so good but only in comparison to Walter, we are getting into proper Harry Turtledove territory now.
Big Nev of 95 was a better keeper than Howard is now.
For whatever reason, Catterick's lack of vision (Young and Ball gone too soon)and or ill health, Kendall getting lucky (Mike England in the directors box on boxing day and getting a full season out of those up to then perrenial sicknotes Reid
Sheedy and Gray) the selling of Lineker and then not getting the Barca job. The Board's average performance over 40yrs where average was their high point.
We don't do Dynasties.
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