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A positive out of a very big negative?

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We have all been reading posts about the state of our club both on and off the pitch.  None of us want to see our club in the state it is in and I for one can't see a proper, stable future for Everton until Bill Kenwright sells up and investment is found. However, in the meantime, we have to look at the cold hard truth.  Bill probably won't sell anytime soon, Moyes will not walk, and Bill certainly won't push him out, so....

The club has no money, our team were expecting big things this season (as were most of us).  This season has been a disappointment to say the least so it is highly likely that some players may want out, and the club will want to cash in in order to bring in money.  None of us want to be a selling club and I'm sure most of us thought those days were possibly a thing of the past.  My thoughts are these:

What are our biggest playing assets and how can we turn this into a positive?

Arteta, Fellaini, Heitinga, Baines, Jagielka, Rodwell, Cahill, Howard.

This is where I run the risk of being slaughtered for suggesting dismantling the carefully constructed team that has helped us make steady progress (until this season of course).  I am not suggesting they should all go and we start from scratch, we could not withstand that; however...

Personally I think Arteta, Fellaini and Heitinga may go and who knows if one or two others might if big money is offered and heads are swayed with the lure of big money and after the disappointing season we have had some may feel the promise will never be delivered so a fresh start is needed.  I know the money agreed for sales doesn't come at once and some would go to appease the banks etc but there is a chance Moyes could get a comparative fortune to spend compared to recent years.

So, very risky question here but if this scenario was to happen could it actually be an opportunity to breath fresh life into the team and end up being a positive thing?  I always try to be an optimist rather than all doom and gloom, I know not everyone will agree but hey, what the heck, I thought I would put this forward and see what anyone says.
Nik Ramsden, Peterborough     Posted 16/02/2011 at 22:53:06

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Michael Kenrick
1   Posted 16/02/2011 at 23:37:53

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Nik, we can't sell anybody until the end of the season. We have a relegation dogfight on our hands, and we need ALL the players to be in there, fighting their damnedest to ensure our survival in the Premier League*. A lot of valid questions and concerns, but for me this post is four months too early (or two months too late!).

* That is unless you subscribe to this questionable theory that EFC/BK would benefit tremendously from the £30M parachute payment..
Kenn Crawford
2   Posted 16/02/2011 at 23:47:52

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Good way of saving money would be to get a certain manager to walk that would save us 65k a week. But i cannot see it happening unfortunately.
Jim Lloyd
3   Posted 16/02/2011 at 23:59:28

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Well Nic, There's nowt wrong with being an optimist but as Mike Kenrick has already stated, we can't sell (or buy ha ha) until the summer. Before then, though, we could be facing a four-month period which will define Everton's future.

As an admitted pessimist, I can only see that we are in real danger of going down. I think that the "team" isn't really a team any more. Something has gone; I look at the body language of the players and they seem to have some fatalistic belief that the club is going tits up.

Never mind all the hugging and shaking of hands before the match starts. Look what happens when a goal goes in against them. They begin to fold like a pack of cards.

For the next few months, I believe the priority is to put (if we have them in the club) eleven battlers out every week, who will sweat blood for the whole 90 minutes.

If we get through the next few months and remain in the Premier League, then we can perhaps begin to rebuild. Until then mate, I think we need to ensure our survival.

The fresh life that you are looking for would depend on Moyes having to dismantle part of a team he has chosen and then go looking in the bargain basement for other unknowns to work into a creditable team.

Personally, I don't think he would have the heart to do so and I for one wouldn't blame him. I think Moyes has a number of faults but integrity, honesty and the ability to create reasonable teams are his strengths. To see the players he has gathered, sold off would, I would think, piss him right off and I would guess he would go.

The one hope that we have is that bloody crew who are running this club are replaced by people with the vision to rebuild Everton Football Club.

I think you have put in a really good post and let's hope your optimism is realised.

Matt Traynor
4   Posted 17/02/2011 at 04:19:12

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If you sell a player for £10m, you need to take into account the costs of the sale, agent fees, ludicrously-named "loyalty" payments etc.

Then, with debt-servicing, it's unlikely all of the balance would go towards squad strengthening. Therefore you're left with the manager having to replace with potential with an ever-diminishing pot of resources for fees/wages. Not a good position.
Mike Atherton
5   Posted 17/02/2011 at 07:53:05

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"That is unless you subscribe to this questionable theory that EFC/BK would benefit tremendously from the £30M parachute payment"

One of the most ridiculous comments I have read in a long time.
James I'Anson
6   Posted 17/02/2011 at 07:51:07

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Does anyone remember Moyes's comments when he first arrived at the club?

He said that he knew Everton didn't have a lot of money. "Let me build a team" he said to Bill. "Don't make me sell my best players"

This worked at first. Then he signed his new contract.

Mike Elbey
7   Posted 17/02/2011 at 09:15:13

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This post is 12 months too late.

The route of our problems this season is Moyes's refusal to trade last summer. He was too stubborn for his own good.

He should have traded positions of strength (centre back, centre mid) and used the money which would have been considerable (Jags £16m to The Arse, Rodwell or Fellaini £20m?) to purchase a fast right midfielder and top drawer striker.

If he had done that, we certainly wouldnt be in the shit we are right now.

It's about time we accepted that the only money we will get under the current regime will be through player sales. We ARE a selling club whether we like it or not. Once we get that into our heads and most importantly the manager gets it into his head (how many times has he stated the opposite) then we may begin to progress again.

Oh and please, no fucking around with Felli this summer as happened with Pienaar. If he doesn't sign a new contract, sell early (ie not 31 August) and use the money to improve the team, ie, get a bloody striker!!!!!
Andy Callan
8   Posted 17/02/2011 at 09:28:52

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Out of Arteta, Fellaini, Heitinga, Baines, Jagielka, Rodwell, Cahill & Howard, I think the only two we would miss are Skippy and Baines - the rest are replaceable.

So, that in mind, I say if we can cash in ? and that's the only route for funds the Manager has available to him ? then flog the rest of them...
Richard Parker
9   Posted 17/02/2011 at 09:57:06

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There's clearly a need to sell-to-buy, but there has to be a certain continuity in the side. Moyes has built a team that, somewhat bizarrely, has done well against the big clubs this year. It seems to be the sides that we should be beating who we fuck up against.

I don't want to see wholesale changes. I want to see maybe 3 assets sold (I'd say Cahill, Heitinga and maybe Arteta, giving us a Jags/Distin partnership and CM of Fellaini, Rodwell and Bily ? who I'm sure has the talent to play behind the striker) bringing in 6 new faces. A good striker, 2 quick wingers and 3 to replace those we've lost, from lower league youngsters and maybe some experienced players on frees.
Nik Ramsden
10   Posted 17/02/2011 at 10:01:45

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Micheal - No I definitely do not subscribe to the parachute payment being a benefit. We have to do all we can to avoid the drop - both for the long term future of the club and to maintain our record of continuous top flight football (both good enough reasons to fight as hard as possible in my eyes).

I do appreciate no trading can be done until July, the window has shut and the players we have now are the ones we have to trust to fight for our premiership status.

I just have the feeling (and I understand there is nothing that can be done about this until the summer) that some of our "bigger" players may lose patience/faith with the board/manager and the continous line of "stay with us just a little longer we're on the verge of something big" and look to fresh challenge. In their eyes (unless they are the full of die hard blue blood - which not many players have now a days) we're club stagnating or on the way down and their future maybe rosier elsewhere.

With this in mind, and most of our thoughts being that if a player doesn't want to play for us we are better off without them, we may need substantial rebuilding in the summer. If this did happen I was looking to see what optimism there was out there for this actually not being such a bad thing, or if people felt this would be one more nail in the coffin. DM could potentially have a reasonably large wallet to open and if invested properly might be OK.

All this tempered with the reality that has come from the past couple of months: no realistic investment forthcoming, losses announced, a smaller squad that in August, BK and DM still at the helm (although I don't think its all DM's fault, Bill needs to swallow his pride and sell up for the benefit of the club and if he is as big a fan as I says he is he should see this). It's all very depressing so wanted to try and spark some glimmer of hope.....its not easy but worth a shot!
Peter Laing
11   Posted 17/02/2011 at 10:26:53

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Sell a Rooney, Lescott or a Rodwell every summer, fantastic strategy that to keep the wolf from the door. We might as well turn off the lights now guys and admit the game's over.
David Hallwood
12   Posted 17/02/2011 at 10:22:38

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Gary Lineker once remarked that the best teams have the best players... football genius is our Gaz. And that's the problem, if you replace the good players we've got with cheaper models (and BTW most of the money will go to pay the bills), we will sink like a stone.

Look at Blackpool; plaudits allround for playing attacking football ? and getting battered in the process 'cos they haven't got quality players to carry it off sucessfully. If there is a fire sale in the summer and of course we're still in the Prem, expect Moyes to revert to 04-05, binary vesion of Everton; 0-0, 1-0, 0-1, 0-0, weirdly enough I'd take that to the end of the season. Roll on summer.
Anthony Hughes
13   Posted 17/02/2011 at 10:32:38

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Selling two or three of your better quality players to bring in half a dozen lower league players to beef up the squad is the road to relegation.
Richard Parker
14   Posted 17/02/2011 at 10:41:23

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Anthony/Peter - do we have a choice? We clearly don't have anything to invest in new players.

At the end of the day, we got our 4th, 5th, 6th place finishes more-or-less on the model of selling assets and bringing in up-and-coming players or players from lesser leagues.

Think Rooney and Gravesen replaced by Bent, Cahill, Arteta, Davies, Kroldrup, Neville and Valente.

Next it was Krøldrup, Kilbane and Bent out for £9M then in with Howard, AJ and Lescott (no doubt a few Rooney payments in there too).

Then we saw pretty much our only real investment in summer 2007, with only Beattie, Davies and Naysmith sold for any kind of fee. But we brought in Jags, Pienaar, Baines and the Yak.

After that, it was back to sell-to-buy - first with AJ and McFadden going and Fellaini arriving... then Lescott out, etc, etc...

We've rarely invested under Moyes and we've pretty much always sold assets to finance incoming transfers.

There's no other way for us ? we need to sell players at their peak value, in order to reinvest in players that will increase in value. And so the cycle starts again this summer.
Anthony Hughes
15   Posted 17/02/2011 at 11:09:35

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The risk you have though is that you can't assume that these lower league players will automatically evolve into Premiership standard. If they don't your left with the beginnings of a Championship quality squad. If our rivals are bringing in better quality players then the reality is there will be a steady decline in our league position season on season ending in the inevitable.
James I'Anson
16   Posted 17/02/2011 at 11:22:17

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I don't think we'll be using the sell-to-buy strategy this summer. I think this is over optimistic.
It will be more like a sell-to-survive strategy.
Mike Williams
17   Posted 17/02/2011 at 12:32:47

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Moyes didn't get a sniff of the £3 million we got for Pienaar. So, if we sold 3 players and got £20 million, how much of that do you honestly think he would get back to spend on players? Because I have a very strong feeling it wouldn't be the full £20 million.
Steve Cotton
18   Posted 17/02/2011 at 12:42:16

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James #16 you are right my friend, but if we keep crying about it we will get nowhere.

We are now a selling club, not a buying club, Liverpool were only 45 mins away from administration but look at them now. If we don't sell we won't survive, so this thread is highly relevant.

We need to lose those that will bring in money and wont be greatly missed... sadly Fellaini will go probably for the same £15 mill we paid. Heitinga should definitely go for again £6 million minimum, Arteta needs to move on probably for £12 million if we are lucky but more likely £8 million. Gueye will be off for about £1.5 million and we may have to fight off bids for Rodwell and Coleman.

Assuming we get the £30-odd million then we should aim to be a tough side to beat and maybe base our strategy on "hit them on the break with a fast striker and similar winger".

It's not all doom and gloom and we should realistically start touting the above for a summer sell-off if we want to consolidate next year and stay in the Prem.

Incidentally, £30-odd million would see us stronger in the hands of the right manager....

Anthony Hawkins
19   Posted 17/02/2011 at 13:10:26

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I watched the Arsenal v Barcelona game last night and was shown a very god lesson on how football should be played.

All the way through, Barcelona, yes they lost due to chances not being taken, but all the players did the basics superbly well and that is where I saw the main difference.

Forget the tricks, forget the immense skill of players such as Messi. They do make a difference but it's the build-up play I'm talking about.

Barcelona passed and moved. They passed and passed. Great stuff, but here are the two keys:

1. Each player only played the way they were facing. When a player received the ball with his back to run of play, instead of taking the ball on and being closed down, he passed the ball to a player facing the right way.

2. They COMPLETED the pass. No silly passes or Hollywood passes. Just simple, honest "here's the ball to feet" passing. No-one was given a hospital pass and no-one was played into trouble. Some were passes into space but they were realistic passes.

All of this happened even in the final third. No immensely speculative passes or hopefuls, just straight "there you go".

As I say, having certain gifted players helps with the final piece of the puzzle; however, the fundamentals are what made the game.

How does this all fit in this thread?

Get the fundamentals right with our current squad and the world will immediately be a better place, regardless of who else may be bought in the summer.
Peter Laing
20   Posted 17/02/2011 at 15:07:11

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I can understand the theory Richard, sell to buy but ultimately the chickens finally come home to roost. Hawry Redknapp has been a keen follower of David Moyes potential transfer targets and gazumped Everton with the financial clout and backing afforded by Daniel Levy.

It's no susprise to see Steven Pienaar jump ship to further his career, the difference between Spurs and Everton is that they have a board willing to speculate to accumalate and end up beating both Milan teams in their own backyard in their first year in the Champions league. Kenwright out, Earl out and Green out!

Dan Brierley
21   Posted 17/02/2011 at 16:31:35

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"Oh and please, no fucking around with Felli this summer as happened with Pienaar. If he doesn't sign a new contract, sell early (ie not 31 August) and use the money to improve the team, ie, get a bloody striker!!!!"

You are aware, that nobody actually bid for Pienaar? If Fellaini doesn't want to sign, then no club would come in for him. They will wait for his contract to run down, and get him on the cheap.
Mike Elbey
22   Posted 18/02/2011 at 02:00:28

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Where is your info that nobody actually bid for Pienaar? I would suggest there were plenty of enquiries at the very least and had we made the decision to sell then there would have been bids.

Regarding Fellaini, if he does not accept a new contract, we should put him up for sale, simple as that. He still has 2 years left on his contract and would command a big fee. There is no way there would not be offers for him.

Basically Dan, with respect, you are talking rubbish....
Richard Parker
23   Posted 18/02/2011 at 09:31:04

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I agree that it's risky, but Moyes has been doing it more-or-less for his whole tenure. Though it now seems that we're more fucked than ever, so he may well suffer from diminishing returns....

Until the board fuck off or cough up, we either stick with a squad beginning to look a bit long in the tooth, or we sell-to-buy (and survive).

It's a bleak picture and it's not likely to get any prettier without significant cash.

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