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Martinez: Atsu will need time

14/10/2014  Comments (76)  jump
'I expect him to be himself in the second half of the season'

Roberto Martinez says that Christian Atsu is going to need time to adjust to the Premier League and that Evertonians will see the best of him in the second half of the season.

The Ghanaian has made four appearances as he has been eased in following his summer move from Vitesse Arnhem where he spent last season on loan from his parent club Chelsea.

Though he has shown flashes of the talent that persuaded Martinez to bring him to Goodison Park for the season, Atsu has battled to demonstrate that he is ready to hold down a first-team place but his manager is confident he will come good once he has acclimatised.

We need to give him a little bit of time to adapt to the physicality of the Premier League just like any player but especially a winger," Martinez says in the Liverpool Echo. "In other leagues referees allow less contact and they are a bit more protected.

But I think the way he has adapted to the way we want to play so far has been impressive. He's an intelligent footballer. I expect him to be himself in the second half of the season and he can be a very important player for us."

Quotes sourced from Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (76)

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Colin Glassar
1 Posted 14/10/2014 at 08:01:29
I said the same about Deulofeu but we hardly saw him either.
Jim Bennings
2 Posted 14/10/2014 at 08:13:22
Yes, he did say the same thing about Deulofeu; to be fair, Del did get the same hamstring injury as Mirallas. We'll never know how he might have done around Christmas time when he was hitting form.

The trouble is, isn't Atsu going to the African Nation's in January? So in other words, all we can expect of him is a smattering of performances between February to May?

Sometimes it's difficult to really pay much attention when Martinez talks about timescales. We heard the same about Traore coming back and playing a part last season thus the reason for him staying at the club.

Regarding Atsu, I have never known why it takes a player who has played in a World Cup so long to get on the pitch and simply just do what he's meant to be good at.

Deulofeu had his problems but straight away you could see what he could do and what his strengths were. What exactly is going to take Atsu so long?

Jim Bennings
3 Posted 14/10/2014 at 08:23:52
The way referees are should have no bearing on how you perform as a player. You have either got the skills and ability to go past men and whip a ball over, or you haven't.

This is one of the many reasons each summer why I always wish for us to sign players who have already had experience of playing in the English Premier League. I hate all this 'bedding in' period, when what we really need is a player out there doing his bit right here and now.

Ian McDowell
4 Posted 14/10/2014 at 08:58:15
So he should be in great shape just as he returns to Chelsea? I think Atsu has potential but unfortunately with Mirallas and Barkley out we need someone now.
Tony J Williams
5 Posted 14/10/2014 at 09:21:30

Physicality of the Premier League is what it is – everyone knows that and as stated above, if you are good enough it doesn't matter if the opposition are trying to push you off the ball.

The lad looks like Jimmy Cranky in stature, he even has smaller legs than Drenthe, and he must have stolen his from an 11-year-old kid.

Anthony Hughes
6 Posted 14/10/2014 at 09:46:56
We've got him for a season; if we have to wait half of that for him to show any worth, what's the point?

We have a squad short on quality and facing lots of games. If we're taking loan players, then we need ones who can come in and perform from the off.

Phil Walling
7 Posted 14/10/2014 at 09:45:52
I've pledged 'to be myself' today so I have to say this kid doesn't seem to have much to offer.

I'm positive we've got far better prospects in the Under-21s who will never see Premier League action. In spite of all the soundbites, this manager is as reluctant as his predecessor to bring kids in. Worse, in fact.

Brent Stephens
8 Posted 14/10/2014 at 09:52:42
Colin, Jim, exactly my thoughts about Deulofeu – Roberto saying we'd have to wait till January to see the best of him – but I didn't think he was that much improved come the January.

I'm afraid to say, I see even less chance of Atsu coming good by January.

I hope Roberto is able to bring some of the other young lads through soon... a question of timing I guess – but some are getting some really good write-ups from various quarters, if only as potential.

Dave Lynch
9 Posted 14/10/2014 at 10:11:14
So he'll be firing on all cylinders just in time for the relegation dogfight.
James Stewart
10 Posted 14/10/2014 at 10:15:25
Deulofeu changed a few matches for us; were it not for his injury, he would have had a bigger impact.

Atsu is just a poor signing and not up to the same standard.

Max Wilson
11 Posted 14/10/2014 at 10:15:53
So far, Atsu looks like an RM mistake. We saw him at Swansea and he was too slow to stop their winger, left far behind, and he seemed to be dithering all over the place. Since then, his appearances have been, in my opinion, without encouraging signs.

Mediocrity threatens us this season. We've got several players now that do one or two things alright each game but, over 90 minutes, don't contribute enough. Then we see them making mistakes forced upon them by opponents and next minute we're trailing in the match.

Michael Penley
12 Posted 14/10/2014 at 10:33:37
So basically, we're paying financially and the cost of league points to train the guy for another club. I can't see the logic in that.

Every minute Atsu spends on the pitch to "adapt to the physicality of the Premier League" is time we could be giving to our own youngsters.

Are our own Under-21 wingers really so much worse than Atsu? They must be absolutely terrible to be less effective than he has been so far.

Phil Walling
13 Posted 14/10/2014 at 10:52:34
It's always seemed daft to me. The club invests years of coaching on our kids and then prefers to bring in some other club's kids who are no better. If that had been the policy in our glory years, we should never have heard of Wright, Harvey, Labone, Hurst, Husband, Whittle and Royle et seq.

Hey, didn't that lot win a thing or two?

Steavey Buckley
14 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:12:34
If Atsu does come good by the end of December, he will then be off to the African Nations Cup. Then, after 6 weeks, he will be back at Everton for the latter part of the season. In what condition, nobody at the moment can tell. Not a good loan signing, imo.
Jim Bennings
15 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:12:42
It shouldn't really surprise us all that much, following the madness that surrounded the Lacina Traore deal... the least said about that the better. Then of course there was the bizarre David Henen shenanigans.

As we have said regarding Atsu, if this is a lad with international experience, then surely it shouldn't take him half a season to get on the pitch against some average full-back and toast him a few times before putting a good cross in? He may not be that good but perhaps Martinez is under selling him a bit.

I can understand how he doesn't want him under unnecessary pressure but, with injury to Kevin Mirallas until Christmas, we need the likes of Atsu and McGeady to start bloody delivering.

There's another name Martinez said we'd now be seeing the best of... Aidan McGeady. He hasn't delivered the big performance levels Martinez expected of him.

Jim Bennings
16 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:22:24
I am well aware I have brought this one up before but, in terms of decent wingers who were already used to the Premier League, we could have tried for one of Nathan Dyer, Wayne Routledge or Yannick Bolasie.

All three, whenever I have seen them play or the highlights, look like good energetic lads who'd have done a good job for us – not world beaters by any stretch of the imagination... but certainly they would have offered far more than we've seen on the flanks this season.

Eddie Dunn
17 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:27:25
I agree, Jim, all good direct runners, prepared to take a bump or two and still get a cross in.

On a different note, I just put TalkSport on and in an instant heard Colin Murray and Danny Murphy talking to that legend Jimmy (Shithouse) Case. A reds love-in whinging why Jimmy didn't get an England Cap. I had to turn it straight off in honour of Geoff Nulty.

Patrick Murphy
18 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:50:52
Eddie - Jimmy 'shithouse' Case.... oh poor him. What about Kendall and Harvey who only amassed a single England cap between them? Why are all the media outlets filled to the brim with stories about current and former Dark Side players? Mind you they are everybody's second team, apparently, so it shouldn't surprise us too much.
Iain Johnston
19 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:49:03
I'd be surprised if there is an ACN in January, unless they all run around in face masks...

I'd like to see Atsu play in his preferred position on the left rather than have him in position he's never played before.

Phil Walling
20 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:09:03
Traore, Henen, Atsu. What you are overlooking here, Jim Bennings, is that these loan deals make nice little earners for agents, players and OTHERS. As Danny Blanchflower said years ago. 'Some footballers are not for playing but for buying and selling.' That's even more the situation today.
Tony J Williams
21 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:20:11
"I'd like to see Atsu play in his preferred position on the left rather than have him in position he's never played before."

That's a novel idea, Iain

Tony J Williams
22 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:21:03
That Traore loan is up there with the Anthony Gardner, Philip Senderos joke loans.

The second we knew he wouldn't be fit for the rest of the season he should have been packed off to John Lennon Airport with a handshake.

Frank Crewe
23 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:08:24
When we loaned Deulofeu, he was 19 years old, so he had an excuse for his inconsistency, but at least he did play a few games. Atsu isn't some teenager – he's 22. If he can't play for us then stop wasting time and money on him and send him back to Chelsea and let them sort him out.

I would also question the wisdom of loaning players who are only going to play a handful of games at best. We don't have a squad big enough to carry passengers so, if they're not ready, then don't loan them.

I'm really beginning to get cheesed off with RM. His duds are beginning to outnumber his successes by a wide margin.

Robles – dud
Kone – dud
McGeady – dud
Atsu – dud
Alcaraz – dud
Deulofeu – inconsistent
Barry – good but too old
Lukaku – good on his day
McCarthy – success

So, out of nine players only one has really bedded in. McCarthy is the right age, he's consistent, and he does what it says on the tin. The rest are a collection of 'wanna-be's, 'used-to-be's, and 'never-were's.

The barcodes gave Pardew a long contract on the back of one decent season. It appears they made a big mistake. Let's hope we haven't made the same mistake.

Frank Crewe
24 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:46:02
ps: I forgot about Traore. Another dud.
Andrew Ellams
25 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:43:15
I can see the advantages of the loan system for a club with our limited finances, what I don’t get is the point of loaning players like Deulofeu or Atsu who are not ready for first-team football. At least Barry, Lukaku, Arteta, Donovan and Pienaar were all available to make instant impacts.

Senderos and Gardner were brought in to bulk up the squad just in case of injuries... cheaper than buying, I suppose.

Phil Walling
26 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:50:54
Frank, that is a diabolical record by any standards – meaning that only the squad he inherited have been up to the task. I do think Martinez got something extra out of the ’Moyes Boys’ last season although it has not been so apparent this time round.

As said in previous posts, the next six games will determine whether the manager has a future here that provides more than the struggle we endured under Smith and Co.

Gavin Johnson
27 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:24:40
Jim, I don't think any of those players that you mention (Dyer, Routledge and Bolasie) would have really inspired much confidence amongst supporters expecting to be in contention for Champions League football. They would have been your Marcus Bent type signings (no-name players that have shown some promise in the past, and may be worth a punt if you have a small transfer budget). Sometimes these signings come off; more often than not, they won't.

In the case of Bent I think he played beyond people's expectations, as have the players you mentioned for their clubs. Unless you can go into the future, it's all 'what if's so there's no point losing any sleep over it.

Atsu doesn't look a good signing at the moment but I would have preferred him at the start of the season to the other three players. Let's hope it's just a case of him getting used to the rigours and pace of the EPL rather than innate ability.

Denis Richardson
28 Posted 14/10/2014 at 12:55:08
Wow, the knives are out in force, I see, all aiming at the jugular again.

Can everyone who reads and writes on this site please keep one thing in mind – we've only played SEVEN league games. Give the manager and team a chance, ffs. Every club comment is followed by a torrent of negative shite.

On Atsu, he hasn't set the world alight yet but it's not like he's had that much time on the pitch either. At the end of the day, he's here on loan... if he helps the team, great; if not, then it didn't work out – end of. I doubt his wages are very much as it is. I'm not really sure what people are moaning about. Loans either work or they don't – we can hardly tell either way 7 games into the season!

Our season start has been shite and having our best players injured has obviously been a big part of that. If you look at the injury table, I think we're second behind Man Utd for having the most first teamers out, 8 to their 9 or something like that. No matter how big a squad, no team can keep up the same quality on the park if they have 8 senior players out. Imagine Chelsea without the likes of Costa, Fabregas, Hazzard and Ivanovic... or Man City without the likes of Silva, Kompany, Aguero and Toure – then DOUBLE that! Then you get to the same relative impact for us.

Hopefully the remaining walking can get a win against Aston Villa this weekend and we'll start to get some players back like Coleman, McCarthy and Barkley.

People writing off the season after 7 games must be about 15 years old, I'm guessing. Let's try to keep some perspective and wait until at least Xmas to see how the season is really going. Not looking too good at the minute but it's very early doors.

Sean Kelly
29 Posted 14/10/2014 at 11:23:47
I'm in favour of loanees but only if they are able to step straight in like Lukaku last year. I'm not in favour of paying a wage for a loanee for a full season while only getting 3 months max out of them

We would be better off giving our young lads a chance unless they are utter shite. I don't think that's the case with the likes of Garbutt and Long in our junior ranks.

Paul Dark
30 Posted 14/10/2014 at 13:23:07
I'd play Atsu over McGeady NOW!
Tom Bowers
31 Posted 14/10/2014 at 13:20:31
With the likes of Atsu, we do have a squad with more depth but that in itself is no good unless the bench players can step in and do a reasonable job... which they haven’t done yet.

Maybe the injury plight has come too early for these players to be expected to slot in but I personally don’t buy it, not when they are getting big wages. Good players, when given an opportunity, should get out there and perform with determination – we have seen very little of that from Atsu.

Frank Crewe
32 Posted 14/10/2014 at 13:45:27
@Denis Richardson

Loan players are for clubs who can't afford to buy a lot of players, aka Everton. So they help to make up the numbers.

"At the end of the day, he's here on loan. If he helps the team, great; if not, then it didn't work out – end of."

We can't afford that. We don't have some huge squad that can afford such a laissez faire attitude. We have a small squad that is already down to the bare bones.

He hasn't helped the team. According to RM, he isn't going to help the team until next year... if at all. In the meantime, we are trying to compete in the Premier League and Europa League, up to our neck injuries, while a fit young international player isn't "ready" yet. It's not good enough.

James Stewart
33 Posted 14/10/2014 at 14:22:28
I agree with Frank’s assessment of Martinez’s signings. Poor overall compared to Moyes.
Jim Bennings
34 Posted 14/10/2014 at 14:38:39

I don't really mean the signing of a Routledge or Dyer or Bolasie to be greatly inspired, I was merely suggesting that they'd have made a damn better fist of being a winger and getting the odd cross, or goal than McGeady, and the clearly lacking, at least right now Atsu.

There's not a massive abundance of great affordable wingers out there but I'm sure, with the money we had, we could have mustered something up.

We can say that those three mentioned lads aren't what's required to push you on to get Champions League football; maybe so... but, then again, the signings of McGeady and a lone deal for a player clearly not up to it or ready haven't exactly been the kind of signings they are making that top 4 closer either.

Harold Matthews
35 Posted 14/10/2014 at 14:20:48
Bit lightweight for the Premier League and not as quick as expected. On the plus side, he is two-footed, intelligent, has plenty of skill and is keen to do well. He can also score goals.

I felt a bit sorry for him in his last game when he was obviously bogged down by a heap of complicated instructions and was not sure what to do. He needs to be let off the leash and free to do his own thing.

Unfortunately it will never happen. Tactics rule the roost and everyone has a specific role to play. I can't see him being here next season but, if he wears our shirt, I'll support him.

Harold Matthews
36 Posted 14/10/2014 at 14:54:08
Bolasie urged for a move to Palace because he wanted to live in London.
Patrick Murphy
37 Posted 14/10/2014 at 14:51:13
We have to take the manager's word for his assessment of this or any other player, but I do get a little worried about the way the manager over-elaborates about his players. Why not say Atsu isn't ready at this time for the cut and thrust of the Premier League but, when he is ready, he will be considered for selection?

I honestly don't know what the club, fans, players or management team gain from in-depth comments on time-scales etc. If a player is injured, all we need to know is when that player is likely to be ready for selection and nothing more.

Atsu may be required for duty in the coming weeks depending on injuries so why let the player know that he is not ready to compete in the Premier League? It might be correct but it won't do much for his confidence if he is required to perform.

Alex Carry
38 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:03:23
I would have taken Victor Moses before Atsu. At least Moses is proven... But there's no point going on about 'what-if's!
Jim Bennings
39 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:07:10

I think I might need to see more of Atsu before even I agree to that one 100 percent.

Alex Carry
40 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:09:29
In fairness Jim, Atsu was playing in a second rate league but scored a few goals and got a few assists so I can sort of see why we took a punt at him.

Moses on the other hand was up for loan, has played under Martinez before and has three or four years experience in the BPL. Just would have made more sense in my opinion.

Gavin Johnson
42 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:24:43
I knew what you meant, Jim. I was just pointing out that a lot of folk moan on this site about the ability of some of our players and signings (Lukaku fee for one). So I'd have just liked to have seen the posts on here if those players you mention had been our summer signings.

In the case of McGeady, he isn't really better or worse than Dyer, Routledge and Bolasie. But he has got some pedigree and was lauded by the likes of Messi and Joachin Loew ahead of their international fixture.

He cost Spartak Moscow 㾷M and we got him for as little as 𧺬k with being in the final year of his contract. Isn't that the speculative and value-for-money sort of signing you'd like us to go for without the aid of a time machine?!

Sam Hoare
43 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:36:48
I think Atsu is capable of a hell of a lot better than we have seen so far. Though I do agree with those who ask, "Why loan a player to improve him for the parent club?" — unless you can buy him afterwards (the best example of this being Mikel Arteta).

I don't think we have any youngsters at the club who are close to Atsu's level, sadly. Matt Kennedy may be the closest and he is struggling to get a game at Hibs right now in Scotland's Second Division, whereas Atsu was a crucial player for Vitesse last season.

It's early days still for Atsu and I reckon he is certainly as capable, if not more so, than McGeady who has had a season now to adjust and is still looking highly inconsistent.

I still wish we had bought Nathan Redmond last year for ٠M. He looks like better to me than Atsu or McGeady.

James Martin
44 Posted 14/10/2014 at 15:50:01
He's barely had a chance, just like Kone hasn't. The same snap judgements happened about Pienaar and Naismith.

Players need a run of games in their correct position to be judged properly. He's never played at Premier League level before, give him a chance. He could grow to be a top player and we'd have a great chance of getting him. Then it looks like a shrewd move.

McGeady gets a bad rap as well. His fee was negligent and he's third choice behind Pienaar and Mirallas. Likewise, Alcaraz is fourth choice. They're playing because of injuries. If you want Martinez to waste money on squad fillers, then go ahead.

McCarthy, Barry, and Lukaku – the three first team players – have all been a success in different ways.

Max Wilson
45 Posted 14/10/2014 at 16:00:26
Looks like we are agreeing then – we've acquired too much mediocrity!
Dan Parker
46 Posted 14/10/2014 at 16:14:05
What's the point in bringing a player in on loan if they need half a season to settle in? They're essentially paying to train Chelsea's player. Might as well get a seasoned Premier League pro that can make in impact, such as Barry did.
Denis Richardson
47 Posted 14/10/2014 at 19:11:34
Frank (#32), leaving aside the fact that Atsu has only been here 5 minutes and people are writing him off already. Every signing, be it loan or transfer, has an element of risk to it – RM doesn’t have a magic crystal ball. Signings either come off or they don’t; I’m not really sure what you’re trying to debate.

Loan signings have less risk as you can give the player back. Obviously, on the flip side, if the player is great or already the finished article, then the parent club don’t generally gift him to another club!

Delboy, Lukaku and Barry were all on loan last season and all contributed. It doesn’t obviously always work out that way however. Barely 7 games into the season is hardly the time to write any player off.

As for Atsu, he was never going to be a first team regular from the off and we signed him to beef up the squad, which he has. Give the guy a chance at least; if we didn’t have all the injuries, he’d be on the bench and this thread wouldn’t even exist.

Dave Lynch
48 Posted 14/10/2014 at 19:58:03

It's one thing acquiring mediocrity but, when mediocrity is played out of position, it becomes shite.

Ian Bennett
49 Posted 14/10/2014 at 20:03:36
A Ghanaian John Oster. Send him back at Christmas.
Andy Crooks
50 Posted 14/10/2014 at 19:56:44
Exactly, Dennis, our finances dictate we take" punts". Often it will be wrong; getting it right is what keeps us afloat. For all his faults, our former manager did brilliantly in that respect. I think Phil makes a good point in suggesting that taking a punt on our young players might be better value and much more satisfying.
Phil Walling
51 Posted 14/10/2014 at 20:13:43
The mistakes can be very costly. Even loan signings come at a pretty price and ٣M per season is no longer unknown. If they are only benchwarmers, they become a luxury which a club like ours can ill afford

Gambling with unknowns may seem brave but I'd rather be gambling with the kids who've come through our much vaunted academy. Trouble is, agents and their 'contacts' make nothing out of that policy.

Kunal Desai
52 Posted 14/10/2014 at 20:27:40
I'm actually quite disappointed in Martinez's acquisitions mainly in the wide areas compared to his predecessor. I didn't really think Deulofeu was that good. He was one-dimensional and generally hit a brick wall with his pace and played far too many wrong passes. In saying that, he was marginally better than what we have in McGeady and Atsu.

McGeady is simply poor. I've yet to be convinced by Atsu in the glimpses I have seen of him. There is no comparison to what we have had in previous seasons – Pienaar (his first spell) and Mirallas. Why do we have to potentially wait half a season before we see a player play to his full potential? This probably doesn't happen at any other club. Only at Everton!

Patrick Murphy
53 Posted 14/10/2014 at 20:51:55
McGeady is no world beater but I honestly don't think he is as bad as some would have us believe. He can do wonderful things with the ball as his goal at Leicester City illustrates but he can be prone to giving the ball away too often and lacks the motor to get back into defensive positions.

But I wonder if I missed all those world class players we have had on our books this last 15 years as there doesn't seem to be a player on our books who is half-decent or worthy of the shirt. It seems that, until they are injured or leave the club, most modern day Everton players are to be criticised as often as possible, imagine what we would be like if we had spent 𧶀m in the Summer window and we were not top of the table at this juncture.

Paul Holden
54 Posted 14/10/2014 at 22:22:03
Can somebody give Terry Curran a ring – it's urgent!
Colin Williams
55 Posted 14/10/2014 at 22:50:18
Great game tonite, McGeady! What a talent! Delighted we have a player of his ability within our team.
Peter Gorman
56 Posted 15/10/2014 at 00:25:20
What has the physicality of the league got to do with Atsu's seeming inability to pass the ball when not under any pressure whatsoever?
Harold Matthews
57 Posted 15/10/2014 at 01:17:44
He's not the only one, Peter. Every week, I see professional players, under no pressure, pass the ball straight to the opposition. It's one of the great mysteries of the Universe.
Brian Cleveland
58 Posted 15/10/2014 at 02:31:29
I guess I've really misunderstood the loan system. Here I was (stupidly) thinking that it was for filling a temporary and immediate need.

If he's not ready, send him back, tell Chelsea to get him up to speed and THEN we'll loan him!

I guess Chelsea just don't have locker room space for him so they sent him to us to get him trained up for next year.

He's got World Cup experience, how can he not be ready? So he takes a few knocks, thinks "bugger, that hurt. Not going to let that happen again" and next time he goes in a bit more determined than before... isn't that the way it goes?

Maybe we should loan him out to a lower league club and see if he can hack it there! ;-) Or maybe to a pub team to get clogged by some fat drunk geezer (how many of you thought I was talking about you?!) and see if he comes back ready.

I don't want to knock a player who has hardly had a chance, but let's not be making excuses for him so soon.... the superficial positivity spin from RM is starting to grate, I've reached the point of taking anything he says with a pinch of salt (or two)

Mark Andersson
59 Posted 15/10/2014 at 02:50:46
I heard that we had to take Astu as part of the drip feed fee for Lukaku. Or is that just a conspiracy like, Martinz really turnin the shite job down so he can literally take us down.
David Hayes
60 Posted 15/10/2014 at 05:37:18
Come on boys, I know you are angry, the shite results and the injuries to 8 first team players makes me livid too, but blaming this lad whose hardly had a kick is beyond reason or sense.

Oh yes RM's sound bites are really starting to grind and I don't listen to them anymore. Thank God for TW to cheer me up. When some TWS don't have a point or cant add any reason to a to a thread . this happens. BY THE POWER OF GREY SKULL I INVOKE HARVEY....KENADALL AND BALL. Fantastic, boys keep it up.

Brian Cleveland
61 Posted 15/10/2014 at 06:17:18
I'm not sure if it came across, but I'm not blaming Atsu, I'm blaming Marti­nez! You only loan someone who is ready and raring to go and perhaps has a point to prove to his home club (Lukaku last season springs to mind). If he ain't, don't loan him; look for someone else who can give you what you need right now... it's that simple... isn't it?
Denis Richardson
62 Posted 15/10/2014 at 12:15:50
Andy 50 - couple of things.

How can any one of us say a signing has been successful or not 7 games into the season? It's just ridiculous.

Secondly, and I'll quote you: "Our finances dictate we take 'punts'. Often it will be wrong; getting it right is what keeps us afloat. For all his faults, our former manager did brilliantly in that respect."

I think you've got some rose-tinted specs on there. Moyes made some great signings but also made his fair share of duff ones, especially when he had money. Over 11 years, I would hope that any manager would make some good signings! Even the law of averages would give you some. For every Arteta & Cahill there was a Bilyaletdinov & Krøldrup (who strangely went on to have 6 successful seasons at Fiorentina and played CL football with them, as well as getting 33 caps for Denmark... make of that what you will).

Judging Martinez's signings on 1 season and 2 months is a waste of time and hardly fair. McCarthy and Lukaku are both good signings, both are young, will improve and will have sell-on value. We've simply been unlucky with Kone, the rest were bought for relatively little money or were signed on a free – and yet people cannot resist the urge to moan, we haven't even had a game and it's still moan moan moan.

I am not saying it's all rosy and I too questioned the sense in giving Barry a 3-year contract and Hibbo and Osman extensions. However, only time will tell if they were worth it but it's far too soon to judge.

Phil Walling
63 Posted 15/10/2014 at 12:56:05
Dennis: If you were an Everton scout and watched this guy in the seven games he has been involved, would you be recommending his signing?
Phil Walling
64 Posted 15/10/2014 at 12:58:27
Brian Cleveland has it right. We should loan only established players who can 'fill the cracks', not be a training club for Chelsea. If players are only up to Atsu's level, then it should be YOUNG EVERTON PLAYERS getting to put in those cameo appearances — not bloody Chelsea's 'maybes'. We are not fucking Wigan!
Denis Richardson
65 Posted 15/10/2014 at 13:13:30
Phil - if you were an Everton scout and watched Naismith when he first came to us, would you be recommending his signing?
Denis Richardson
66 Posted 15/10/2014 at 13:14:37
Phil 64 - by that reasoning we shouldn't have loaned Lukaku or Delboy last season. You really agree with that?
Tony J Williams
67 Posted 15/10/2014 at 13:10:46
Good point Phil 63.....however....

If the same scout had watched the same player at the World Cup and a few games last season at Vitesse, would he advocate a loan deal?

Michael Kenrick
68 Posted 15/10/2014 at 13:33:03
Dennis, I think it's natural for fans to look at how players are performing in games, and to develop opinions of those players based on what they see. Of course we are not all going to think the same but, speaking purely for myself, watching Atsu so far this season has been very disappointing; watching McGeady has been very frustrating; watching Lukaku has been absolutely maddening.

I think that's all people are saying. It's not 'moan moan moan'... it's valid concern for the poor performances which have put us where we are going in to Saturday's game — 17th in the Premier League, most goals conceded, out of the League Cup.

Denis Richardson
69 Posted 15/10/2014 at 14:26:36
Michael 68, I can understand the frustration, I share it myself, especially with McGeady. However, there are a fair few comments already writing Atsu off after he's barely even played. That's what I can't understand.

By all means criticise the player for playing shit but at least let him play a few times before writing him off completely. I wanted Naismith gone last year but am happy to now eat humble pie given the goals he's since scored.

Added to that, when talking about Atsu and McGeady, we also have to keep in mind that they didn't cost us much. We've taken punts on both and time will tell if they come off or not. They're both squad players at the end of the day and won't be starting too many games if most of the players were fit.

Hopefully results will improve soon, then the general tone of the site will no doubt also improve.

We could really do with a win against Villa!

Jamie Barlow
70 Posted 15/10/2014 at 15:18:34
@65. Good post.
Tahir Abdullah
71 Posted 15/10/2014 at 16:59:33
Martinez's approach on this one is unsurprisingly positive, which ultimately bodes well for EFC and Atsu. He looked really accomplished at WC2014 and he can only get better under RMs management.
Phil Walling
72 Posted 15/10/2014 at 18:56:25
OK, Tahir but why aren't we seeing the likes of McAleny and Long who are both as talented as this guy from what I've seen of him? It seems that being an Everton player is a bloody handicap under this guy. He may be in awe of Jose but that does nothing for our club!
Brian Cleveland
73 Posted 15/10/2014 at 19:19:12
Denis 66: There is a difference. Lukaku came and went straight into the team. He was ready and gave us something straight away. Delboy took a little while but only a couple of months, not until the second half of the season.

I come back to my original point, what is the use of a loan player that isn't ready to play for you? You take players on loan that can fill a need right now. It's like a TV dinner, you get it out the freezer to use it because it fits your immediate need, not because your missus MIGHT leave you without dinner in six months time! Of course the TV dinner needs to be paid for only once, the loan you pay for monthly whether you use it or not!

And once again, this is NOT a pop at Atsu who I reserve judgement on for the moment...

Dave Abrahams
74 Posted 15/10/2014 at 19:10:43
Phil Walling (#72)

I agree, Long should have at least been on the bench for some league games.

As for Astu, you say he has played 7 times for Everton... how many minutes has he been on the pitch?

Jay Rollinson
75 Posted 15/10/2014 at 20:12:48
Probably because they are not ready for first team football just yet, Phil. Not everything has to be turned into an opportunity to have a dig at Martinez.

Despite your opinion of Atsu (one based off brief glimpses of the player so far), he has played first team football abroad, been capped by his country and gave a good account of himself in a World Cup. Any manager assessing the available evidence would determine that Atsu is much further along in his development than a couple of kids who have only ever played at youth level before now.

Also, they don't even play in the same fucking position. If Martinez thought he was short on wide players during the summer then neither Long or Ledson were going to help fill that gap, were they?

Geoff Evans
76 Posted 16/10/2014 at 19:16:12
Get off the boys back, everyone needs time to settle. Get behind the lad and give him a chance.
Andy Meighan
77 Posted 17/10/2014 at 22:04:26
Some of MartinezÂ’s statements leave me baffled at times. We might not see the best of him until after the New Year? Basically whatÂ’s heÂ’s saying is heÂ’s struggled so far and doesnÂ’t look up to it. He might come good. IÂ’m not sure but he might.

Well he was either ready or he wasnÂ’t but given that heÂ’s off to the ACN weÂ’re not going to be seeing that much of him considering weÂ’ve only got him for a season-long loan. If he was a permanent deal, IÂ’d say yes, okay, give him time. But time is the one thing he hasnÂ’t got.

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