Slim creative pickings, claims Martinez

, 29 January, 72comments  |  Jump to most recent

Roberto Martinez appeared to effectively close the door on any late action in the transfer market by claiming that there are no available options to replace injured duo Leon Osman and Steven Pienaar.

Everton's manager also pointed to the imminent return from injury of Tim Howard, who he says is ahead of scheduled in his recovery, as a reason why there is little urgency in his search for a long-term goalkeeping acquisition.

Martinez hinted yesterday that he was working on finding possible cover for two of his more creative players in the form of Osman and Pienaar who have spent significant time on the sidelines this season and whose prospects of seeing regular football over the remainder of the campaign are unknown.

His latest comments suggest, however, that the Catalan has shelved any plans to make late additions to a squad that is effectively down three members without those two midfield players and the now-departed Samuel Eto'o.

While many anxious Evertonians had set their hopes on the manager adding some fresh blood before the deadline to help spark the Blues' sputtering season to life and provide fresh impetus when the Europa League campaign resumes next month, Martinez denies that he is taking a risk by not adding to his squad.

"It is not a risk, not if you look at the amount of games that Samuel played in the last three or four weeks," Martinez says in The Guardian. "Romelu is a young man and fully fit. Arouna is very strong at the minute. Any player can get injured. You don't assemble squads thinking about the worst situation.

"The work we did in the summer was to get a squad strong enough to deal with all competitions.

It is not the right market for what we could do with, he continues. Leon and Steven are a different type in terms of what they give us but I don't think there's anyone out there [to replace them].

"As for a new keeper, Tim is recovering really well from injury and could be back for the derby so I will wait until Monday to see how he has reacted. But it is a position we need to address for the long term.


Reader Comments (72)

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Will Firstbrook
1 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:03:01
Where is the 'off' button?
Bob Heyward
2 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:09:34
"The work we did in the summer was to get a squad strong enough to deal with all competitions." – yes, and what a great fist you've made of them, Roberto. Not.

Aaaaargh... I could scream!

Ross Edwards
3 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:11:32
He just outdoes himself every time he opens his mouth doesn't he? Has he even had a look? Is there a way of shutting him up somehow? He's just embarrassing himself with every interview.

Brilliant isn't it? The likes of West Brom and Palace have been able to find players. Yet we can't. Nastasic, Sinclair. They would have been options at least in the short term. Unbelievable.

Danny Broderick
4 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:14:25
Get a pacy right winger in on loan and try to salvage something from this season. Lennon or Townsend from Spurs? Del Boy from Barcelona? There must be lots out there struggling for game time. We need to bring someone in to change the mood and give everyone a lift...
Mike Hughes
5 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:19:10
Excuse my cynicism but we're more likely to see Marcus Bent.
Ross Edwards
6 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:16:42
"The work we did in the summer was to get a squad strong enough to deal with all competitions'

This quote is a cracker. Besic, who despite being excellent in recent weeks is soon to be dropped in favour of his beloved Barry when McCarthy returns, Eto'o who apart from Burnley and Krasnodar did sweet FA apart from sitting on his arse all the time, and Atsu who can't even get on the bench and has barely impressed when he has come on.

Only 3 'new' signings came in from last season. And one of them has already legged it to Italy. West Ham for example signed 6 or 7, all quality signings. Especially Sakho, Cresswell and Valencia. Song is another one. All bargains.

He is sounding increasingly desperate and even more deluded by the day. If he really thinks that our paper thin squad is strong enough, he is seriously mistaken.

The top brass are sitting there rubbing their hands with glee as we speculate over Pato and Konoplyanka rumours, 'Ha ha, they are a gullible lot aren't they?'

Sat there twiddling their thumbs while players who would have been decent options are either going cheaply to our rivals or out of the league altogether.

We are increasingly becoming more and more of a laughing stock every passing week. No ambition from the top, total delusion and spouting off ineffective, contradictory propaganda from BK's mouthpiece.

I don't know how Martinez sits there every day in his office and thinks that things are going well and that nothing is wrong.

It's a joke. I'm rapidly losing my faith in Roberto with every single passing day. I'm giving him Palace and the Derby as a last chance to prove me wrong or that's me done with him.

He really is taking the piss now.

Lyndon Lloyd
7 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:26:48
"You don't assemble squads thinking about the worst situation."

You do, though, you see. Prudent managers absolutely do. It helps prevent everything from going to shite.

As I've just said on Twitter... Heaven forbid, but if Lukaku gets injured, we're relying on Arouna Kone to fire us all the way to Warsaw. No one can convince me that's sound management.

And neither Naismith nor Mirallas, as effective as they can be in their respective supporting attack roles, have shown they can lead the line effectively.

Simply hoping that the injury curse that's dogged us all season will simply end is a risk. So, either he's skint or stubborn; either way, it all comes off very small-time.

Cindy Cole
8 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:38:33
It was the work we didn't do in the summer in terms of preparation and recruitment which has contributed to where we are at now.

At one stage when there was talk of 6-7 new players we were linked with Perisic, Brahimi, Martins-Indi and Besic. We got the latter but could have bagged the lot for the extravagant Lukaku fee. That would have strengthened all areas bar the striker and let's face it, there are plenty who could have done a good job there for far less money.

Oh dear, the tide is turning.

Peter Laing
9 Posted 29/01/2015 at 23:34:41
When you have been sub-par all season, you begin to dance ever more quickly to your master's tune.

Moyes was quite rightly pilloried for his apparent frugality in the transfer market although it is quite widely accepted that the transfer policy for the vast majority of his 11-year tenure was dictated by the dark forces that operate at Everton under the modus operandi of the Kenwright years.

Martinez appears to have taken less than 2 seasons to begin to talk the talk and walk the walk and, if he is fired, we will get a different manager who will probably adopt a different brand of football but who will invariably operate under the same straight-jacket restrictions of his predecessors. For every Rooney, there will be a Barkley.

Karl Masters
11 Posted 30/01/2015 at 00:14:49
Lyndon: the line you highlight screamed at me off the screen.

Of course you should be thinking worse case scenario when you assemble a squad. What's he on?

Just stop talking and start winning matches!!!!!

Nick Page
12 Posted 30/01/2015 at 00:20:26
I thought the fucking blowhorn had a spezzy relationship with Barca, like? Oh wait.....
James Flynn
13 Posted 30/01/2015 at 02:03:57
Lyndon - You attached the "I" word to our young Belgian?

Now, I'll be crossing my fingers every time Lukaku is on my TV screen Saturday.

Michael Penley
17 Posted 30/01/2015 at 04:06:08
Can't we ever have a balanced manager who talks sense like a normal person would? Our last one was dismally stern with no sense of humour and a tendency to downplay any aspiration above avoiding relegation, and now this one is depressingly sanguine with an irritating sunniness that would not disappear even if his whole family were wiped out by the plague.

It's certainly entertaining, Bill, but could you stop picking out these extreme archetypes as if you were picking the cast for a melodramatic play?

Jimmy-Åge Sørheim
18 Posted 30/01/2015 at 06:25:08
He is utterly inept at THIS level.

The asessments he is making is totally wrong, and he has even forgotten his famous "loan strategy" he spoke so fondly of last season.

RM has shown he can not cope this season, his statement to not prepare for the worst is shocking, he needs to be gone if we are to survive this season.

His statements seem to create even more concern, is this his way of building confidence?

I think last season was a one off based on his inept handling of this whole season.

Ian Hollingworth
19 Posted 30/01/2015 at 07:18:07
"Buffoon who is playing with our club"
Above applies equally to BK and RM

Be afraid, be very afraid! The sad thing is they both obviously take us all to be fools... I want them both out!!

Ian Hollingworth
20 Posted 30/01/2015 at 07:37:56
Dont get me started on Kone being a replacement for Eto'o? How does that work?

A paper thin squad that RM said needed 6-7 additions in the summer is now a further man down.

I will also go on record as saying that Kone is a waste of space (that should see him bag a hat trick on Saturday).

Daniel A Johnson
21 Posted 30/01/2015 at 07:48:20
Never ever in my time being registered with ToffeeWeb which I think is well over 10 years have I ever heard such condemnation of an Everton manager by the fans.

Martinez is gone, his face, his words, his eyes, his body language are all of a defeated man who knows he's lost the dressing room and the players.

Moyes almost fell apart under the pressure at Man Utd towards the end, it was uncomfortable to watch and I'm now getting the same feeling with Martinez. Its just uncomfortable listening to the man at the moment.

Deep down he knows he underestimated the size and expectations of the club and the pressures and history that go with it.

Martinez simply isn't good enough, a nice football idealist well and truly found out in the rough and tumble cut throat of the Premier League.

Anthony Flack
22 Posted 30/01/2015 at 07:56:31
He is losing it, if I worked with him I would be calling Occupational Health right now, before he does or says anything stupid, which might offend his customers or staff, shit looks like it's far too late.

It took the Wigan cup game to get me to turn on Moyes, Martinez has lost me far more quickly. Does not mean I am any less an Evertonian or will not be backing the lads 100%

Tony Abrahams
23 Posted 30/01/2015 at 08:07:45
If he doesn't sign anyone, it will be because of the usual reasons.

We have a big history for deadline day and whilst he talks about The golden oldies, a winger is an absolute must alongside A Big Prayer Book!

Allan Barratt
24 Posted 30/01/2015 at 08:22:23
Can we get on to PaddyPower to bring their Grim Reaper to the derby game??
Christopher Dover
25 Posted 30/01/2015 at 08:15:33
"The work we did in the summer was to get a squad strong enough to deal with all competitions.

Well let's hope he has as we have two competitions left and I know one we will not win and hope we do not come in the last three.

Anthony Flack
26 Posted 30/01/2015 at 09:01:24
My brother just got a ticket from the club for the Young Boys game – sent me a text saying it will be great to play in Warsaw, then thought about it and said Walsall
Phil Rodgers
27 Posted 30/01/2015 at 09:13:14
He literally just speaks without putting any thought into what he is saying. Just verbal diarrhea.

It's just political nonsense, basically we aren't signing anyone because we cannot afford to.

Denis Richardson
28 Posted 30/01/2015 at 09:47:15
Trying not to take notice of this as there's still 3 days left till the window closes so hope this is a bluff.

'Slim pickings' is obvioulsy bollocks given the amount of players available on loan – half os Spurs' midfield for starters!

Brent Stephens
29 Posted 30/01/2015 at 09:48:32
On a personal level, starting to feel sorry for the guy. Despite all the millions in salary, these sorts of things can destroy an individual emotionally and psychologically. I would imagine that, such is the pressure and odium (predictive texting had that as imodium!) heaped on him at the moment, his judgement is likely impaired. A sad state of affairs all round. But he's still got to go. He's riding an H-bomb.
Dave Abrahams
30 Posted 30/01/2015 at 10:17:13
If new players don't come in before the transfer deadline, and I'm prepared for that but hope I'm wrong, are some fans really blaming Martinez. If you are, you really do not understand what Kenwright has done and is continuing to do to this club.

Martinez has has a very poor season up to now, no-one can deny that, but to blame him for not spending money when he has no control of the money is completely wrong.

Les Fitzpatrick
31 Posted 30/01/2015 at 10:45:23
After much deliberation over the last 6 weeks or so,I have arrived at the decision not to renew my season ticket, having had one for 22 years.

I once heard Bill Kenwright talk at a function, and he was talking about being tuned in to how and what the Everton fans were talking about, and how they thought things were going. Somebody asked where he got his feedback from, and he replied, well from ToffeeWeb of course.

So, from this we can deduce that Bill Kenwright is well aware of our concerns regarding Martinez, so I am just awaiting Martinez to get the traditional vote of confidence from the board, then he will be booted out.

I am not giving BK my entrance fee upfront by buying a season ticket... I will pick my games, and pay at the gate. I feel this is the only way to show my displeasure. I cannot bring myself to boo the players,so this is my protest.

A drop in season ticket sales next season might just focus the Chairman's mind...

Conor Skelly
32 Posted 30/01/2015 at 11:28:23
Kenwright knows how insecure Martinez is about his position at the moment. So, RM will say whatever it takes at this stage not to ruffle his employers feathers. Because of recent results BK has him by the balls.
Brian Hennessy
33 Posted 30/01/2015 at 11:50:29
As Phil Waling said on another thread, this all smacks of BK not wanting to give more transfer money to a manager who could be gone in a few weeks.

Or another way of looking at it, any money BK had for transfers in this window, is being kept to payoff RM if we sack him.

Depressing what ever way you look at it.

Tim Greeley
35 Posted 30/01/2015 at 12:36:41
Delusional to the end.
Nick Wall
36 Posted 30/01/2015 at 12:24:37
I'm as desperate to see new blood as the next man, but I can't help feeling that Martinez has been the victim of some misreporting here. This is the Echo's version of what he said:

"We are not looking in this window to try to find solutions. It would be fair to say that all the work we did in the summer was to try to find a squad which was strong enough to compete in all the competitions. I still feel that the work is to try to get the players back in a confident mood. Remember we haven't lost any of the talent we had last season. I do feel that we have a very good and strong squad looking into the second half of the season. Saying that, as a football club we will always try and use the windows in our favour. We'll never stop trying to help the players we have at the club. The work is in more trying to recover the confident mood we always showed in our play and getting players back from injury and create a real competitive edge."

As someone who is inclined to take people at their word, I'm prepared to wait a little longer and see whether Martinez lives up to the commitment he makes in that final sentence. But as Martinez will be aware, unless performance levels and results show some improvement very soon, his time could be running out.

Tony Hill
37 Posted 30/01/2015 at 12:31:06
Daniel (#18), I think you're right that RM is finished and knows it. His words tell no other story. Inexcusable then that Kenwright has not acted.
Andrew Ellams
39 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:08:08
Problem with top level football managers is so few of them resign these days because they know they will miss out on that huge payday. It just delays the inevitable and piles more unwanted stress on themselves and those around them.
Syd Morton
40 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:19:43
There was no work done in the summer, RM was in Brazil commenting on the World Cup and from the look of the players early season they spent the summer walking between the pie shop and the pub.

I think BK has told him he doesn't trust him with what's left of the TV money and that's why there are no new players.

Christine Foster
41 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:14:02
One cannot condemn a manager for saying positive in the face of adversity, but the lack of realism is the frustrating result. A wafer thin squad, meagre pickings. (Really? honestly? that's a cop out if ever I heard one, if that's what he actually believes then we have a serious scouting issue.) It's more likely that, as with David Moyes, he has no money to spend.

As such, you cannot condemn the manager if he cannot request the board to replace ageing and injured players. The board, lets face it we mean BK and Elstone, sit on their hands and hope we survive, will only take action when its too late, then all the blame will fall on RM. Fall guy for the ineffective, abusive leadership of our club.

The calls to rid us of RM from supporters are crass because he has few options, his hands are tied, his naivety of trust in BK is laid bare for what it is. Mug is written across his forehead.

RM is not a bad manager, but he is not good enough to handle BK. I cannot see him laying down the law in Elstone's office or demanding a showdown with BK. Its not who he is. He is out of his depth at Everton in part because of his ability but mostly because of his inability to handle BK. Who appointed him? BK.. who bears that responsibility? BK. Who is nowhere to be seen? BK

Roberto is copping flack from every point, rightly so in my opinion, but the lack of alternative solutions he has available is due to the board and the lack of desire to spend.

Its a dangerous game BK is playing, few will or should believe that RM is solely the author of our downfall. A new manager will not change the leopard's spots... perhaps when David Moyes left and slagged us off at Man Utd, he was giving it back in spades to BK for the way he believes he was treated and the flack he took... I look forward to his book at some time in the future..

John Keating
42 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:34:13

Everything you say about Bill is correct regarding supporting his manager in the transfer market, however, the position we find ourselves in is down to the manager. Martinez was responsible for preseason, tactics, player selection and substitutions.

We do have ageing players but they are exactly the same ones we had last season and every other team have them.

We have had injuries but so does every other team. Today in fact Martinez spoke the only true words out of his mouth to date when he said injuries had nothing to do with the teams performances this season.

Bill should have gone years ago and we will never compete for the top 4 regularly with him there but to somehow blame him for the shite we have witnessed this season is not on in my opinion.

Marc Williams
43 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:51:55
Martinez is not so much a "dead man walking" as a....... Dead man talking. His brain knows it's all over, it's just not got around to telling his mouth yet.

Perhaps Chairman Bill could turn it into some macabre Spanish musical.....100 things to say at Goodison when you're already dead.

I'm sure it would be .......PHENOMINAL!

Tony Draper
44 Posted 30/01/2015 at 13:47:01
When we were having our deliberations here about our new manager following DM's unsavoury departure, I had a list of those who I really did not want (my No! No!! No!!! list) and a list of those who I'd like.

Apart from the names, I was also pretty clear about the fact that I needed to like the individual appointed, and I did; and I still do.

That doesn't mean that I have accepted or approve of our performances this season, because I really don't.

More than anything I am utterly bewildered how a squad and their manager can go from "Outside Chance for PL Champions" (yes, we really did have a quick chuckle over that, but nevertheless our performances, position and style did allow us to daydream, albeit very briefly and cheekily) to "Potential Relegation Candidates" within 12 months.

As a generality, has the relative success of last season simply gone to the players heads ?
Has RM's sunny outlook and positive philosophy encouraged them to think that they are FAR better than they really are ?
Did RM get "flattered" by the flirtatious attentions for his expertise during the World Cup.
Did RM, as a consequence of the attention AND the appointment at a far bigger club simply lose focus during close season ?
Were they ALL still basking in the Autumn Sunshine before the penny dropped ?
Was the mindset of the entire group far too cohesive, full of belief and lacking in hard edged, clear eyed, analytical, self searching to adjust quickly enough ?

I think that the answer to ALL of the above is a simple Yes. There is no "single issue" at fault when a well functioning unit malfunctions repeatedly and continually.

The warm weather training, however, finally and completely removes all the oversights, misjudgements, false assumptions and excuses.

Noses to the grindstone, hard fucking graft from here until May, no ifs, buts or maybes.
Solid hard graft, every player, every minute, every game, every week.

I haven't booed nor jeered (nor will I)

Steve Cotton
45 Posted 30/01/2015 at 15:12:21
Just a thought but, as our manager has a nice 5-year contract, then surely it would cost BK to kick him out now. He can't use Gross Misconduct, just ineptitude. Therefore it will cost a minimum £10 million to get rid plus various back room staff, so let's say £15 million. How in Gods name can he afford to get rid???

Looks like he's here for the foreseeable future, obviously without funds until we have sold exactly £28 million worth of talent to break even...

Mark Griffiths
46 Posted 30/01/2015 at 16:06:30
Slim pickings within our squad either way! BTW where has the current posts section gone?
James Hughes
47 Posted 30/01/2015 at 16:13:09
Scott Sinclair from Cittee to Villans today, is he not creative enough? Feels like we missed the boat again.
Andy Meighan
48 Posted 30/01/2015 at 16:56:44
I could weep when I hear the drivel he comes out with their the ramblings of a man who knows he's lost the majority of fans, the dressing room, and quite possibly the board. He obviously knows he's living on borrowed time but my one wish is I just hope the crowd don’t turn on him next week at the derby... because nothing would give them gloating red bastards more pleasure than to see him squirming, especially at the Old Lady during another defeat to them.

After that, I hope the board do the decent thing and axe him because it's obvious there's only one direction we're heading and it's certainly not up! I can't see us getting nothing at Palace so can you imagine the atmosphere at a booze-ridden Goodison Park at 5:30pm at the derby? It won't be for the faint-hearted – that's for sure. These are dark days indeed...

Andy Meighan
49 Posted 30/01/2015 at 17:08:31
Thought Slim Pickings was a Country and Western singer... I hope we don’t get him.
Andy Meighan
50 Posted 30/01/2015 at 17:11:36
Ah well... that's made me sleep easier. Howard could be back for the derby. That's great because he's never conceded against the shite, has he? Get me a pint of what the Spaniard is on, please.
Ralph Basnett
51 Posted 30/01/2015 at 17:26:07
Moyes and his staff cost Manure £5.2million to get rid, RM would probably be half of that?
Bill Gall
52 Posted 30/01/2015 at 17:35:14
John (#39)

BK is to blame as he is the one who hired Martinez in the first place. After David Moyes left, we were looking for a manager for our club that has been in the Premier League since its conception.

Any person who is hired for an advertised position must be judged on his previous experience for that position. Look at Martinez's record with Wigan, then ask yourself was BK at fault for hiring him in the first place?

Colin Glassar
53 Posted 30/01/2015 at 17:58:00
Scott Sinclair? Bit of a journeyman isn't he? One of those players who seemed to resurrect his career (at Swansea) but then preferred to be a benchwarmer at Man City.
Colin Glassar
54 Posted 30/01/2015 at 18:08:39
No money, simple as. I'm still expecting at least one player in though.
Steve Woods
55 Posted 30/01/2015 at 18:21:06
"Martinez is not so much a "dead man walking" as a....... Dead man talking. His brain knows it's all over, it's just not got around to telling his mouth yet."

Marc Williams @ 40 your post above made me LOL, amidst the darkness and dread surrounding our club, it's spot on.

Steve Cotton @ 42 BK can't afford NOT to get rid. If we finish (say) 15th this season that is already a loss of £15 million worth of place money. Finish in the relegation places and go down and the club (as in a club in the top flight) will possibly finished for a generation.

Sid Logan
56 Posted 30/01/2015 at 18:32:56
I think we're looking at a person (never mind a football manager) who clearly has a different mind-set to your average Joe. In fact, he could almost be described as eccentric.

I would say at this moment in our history we need someone with a large dose of common sense. What we have is a person with anything but that. He is someone who clearly is unable see the wood for the trees.

Personally I'm no longer in the state of fear that overwhelmed me as I left the ground after the West Brom game. I now accept the simple reality that Roberto is a nutcase. If the next 2 games go the way I expect them to, a smiling Roberto will be clearing his desk shortly after 7:15pm on 7 February 2015.

I expect a caretaker management to be set up under Joe Royle to ensure our survival. I have no doubt Joe, who has more common sense in his little finger than Martinez has in the whole of his phenomenal being, will ensure we survive.

Only then will we be able to write this season off and indulge ourselves in discussing who we want to manage us next season. Remember, as Bill once said, the most important people he listens to when appointing a new manager are Evertonians. I'm sure when the time comes Lyndon and Michael will play their parts in communicating our views (once we reach a sort of consensus) to the Club.

However, that's some way off . We now have 2 game which are crucial to our future. Let's look to it and turn our minds to see the broad sunlit uplands that lie before us!

Brian Waring
57 Posted 30/01/2015 at 19:33:38
Roberto Martinez has ruled out signing a winger before the end of the transfer window.

And the Everton FC boss is backing the on-loan Christian Atsu to give his Blues career lift-off when he returns to the side.

Atsu has helped Ghana reach the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals and produced a man-of-the-match display in their deciding group game against South Africa.

The 22-year-old has struggled to make an impact at Goodison Park after sealing a season-long loan from Chelsea in the summer and a miserable first five months at the club were compounded when he picked up a hamstring injury in December.

Everton have been linked with a number of players who could bolster their options in wide areas but Martinez is happy with his lot and believes a fully fit and firing Atsu can have still make his loan move a success.

"It has always been the plan that Christian Atsu will be an important player for us in the second-half of the season and so it was great to see him doing so well and his man-of-the-match award against South Africa," said Martinez.

"He is a player who will come back strong and ready to have a big role."

Darren Hind
58 Posted 30/01/2015 at 19:43:14
Haven't seen much AFCON, How's Atsu been doing?

Brian Waring
60 Posted 30/01/2015 at 20:14:02
He's been playing well, Darren, got Man of the Match in his last game. I don't know if he's the answer to our problems though, because the Premier League is a whole different ball game to what he is facing out there.
Paul Hewitt
61 Posted 30/01/2015 at 20:17:36
You watching the same games, Brian. I think he's been crap really.
Michael Penley
62 Posted 30/01/2015 at 20:15:48
Omar Abdulrahmen has been tearing it up in the Asian cup and is better than both Osman and Pienaar when it comes to picking passes and pulling strings in midfield.

I don't know how much he'd cost but I really don't understand this 'slim pickings' talk either. I haven't seen much evidence that Martinez looks very far outside of Spain and the UK.

I mean, he had to go to the World Cup personally to 'scout' one of the most outstanding defensive midfielders there.

Frank Crewe
63 Posted 30/01/2015 at 20:42:19
"The work we did in the summer was to get a squad strong enough to deal with all competitions."

Out of the running in the league early on.

Out of the FA Cup early on.

Out of the League Cup early on.

Still in the Europa Cup for now.

Looks like the "work" didn't actually deal with all competitions at all... Now it's a question of somehow maintaining our Premier League status till the end of the season. Hopefully we can then give this dimwit the heave ho.

Dennis Karanikolopoulos
64 Posted 30/01/2015 at 21:23:34
Roberto Martinez could do a lot worse than look at some of the talent in the current AFC Asian Cup. Abdul Raman from UAE has been a sensation, in the tradition of the silky creative midfielders of old. JUST WHAT WE NEED.

Then you've got the Socceroos, how good would Leckie be on the wing for Everton? Pick him up from the Bundesliga Roberto. Spain and Wigan are not the only sources of good players.

As for goalkeepers, Socceroos keeper Matt Ryan is the best distributor by foot of a keeper I've ever seen, and plays as a sweeper. EXACTLY the Martinez style. He won keeper of the year in Belgium for Club Brugge and I must say after a shaky world cup he's been ultra impressive. We could do a lot worse at Everton than signing him up. He's young too!!

Sid Logan
65 Posted 30/01/2015 at 21:39:43
Can you believe we're in deep shit and there's a casual debate going on about which winger we should buy as if it would make a difference.

Please, lads, get real!

Trevor Peers
66 Posted 30/01/2015 at 21:41:02
Scott Sinclair to the Villa means were getting N’Zogbia on Monday
Frank McGregor
67 Posted 30/01/2015 at 21:46:04
The problem with the team is the tactics are not working so there has to be a change in the pattern of play.

Bringing in 2 or 3 players will not alter the situation and to looking around for who blame other than the manager does not make sense.

The players we have can keep the team away from relegation and then in the summer get fresh blood in.

Tony Abrahams
68 Posted 30/01/2015 at 22:00:10
Tony 41, very good that.
Brian Waring
69 Posted 30/01/2015 at 22:52:15
This one's for Phil and Bob:

Jay Harris
70 Posted 30/01/2015 at 22:46:26
Much as I don't have time for BK, RM has to be accountable.

He has been found out and is totally out of his depth.

I think we all underestimated the amount of work OFM put in at the club and I think Roberto thought he was going to sit back and relax this season after his hols in Brazil.

For all we were unhappy with DM especially the latter couple of years when the board did nothing to help him break the glass ceiling Roberto has inherited a quality squad with some quality youngsters maturing at the same time he arrived and has had good backing in the transfer market last summer no doubt overpaying for a player he already knew rather than putting some graft in and coming out with the likes of Sakho (£4 million) and giving long term contracts to Gareth Barry, Tim Howard and Hibbo to name but three.

That combined with his shambolic preseason preparations should have been enough but his tactics and team selections together with the nonsense he has been spouting was enough to convince even the most supportive fans that he is incapable of managing EFC.

He is still talking stupidly about Barkley and Naismith being able to play wide when necessary.

I just hope we do well despite him tomorrow as I do not think we are relegation fodder just yet but with the upcoming fixtures we need a confidence booster.

Tony Abrahams
71 Posted 30/01/2015 at 22:57:27
Just read that Brian, maybe the sun and the squad have got through to him.

Christine Foster
72 Posted 31/01/2015 at 03:38:36
John / Jay, I didn't mean to insinuate that all the reasons for our present predicament are due to BK, what I said was that RM is copping flak and rightly so, he IS responsible for team tactics and selection, which frankly have been disastrous this year.

Mitigation for such has been hard to find, yes players injured means other players may play out of position but tactics?? You play to your strengths and we haven't all year. That's down to RM. No one else.

But we are sleep-walking to relegation with a silent board and a delusional manager. We have unhappy players, unhappy fans but, listening to the mantra, you would never know it...

Christine Foster
73 Posted 31/01/2015 at 03:46:41
Perhaps RM just meant "Slim pickings" for what he could afford... which is nothing. He would be right.

January not the time to strengthen the squad? Of course, no-one above us is buying, are they????? Errrrrr...

Denver Daniels
74 Posted 31/01/2015 at 03:59:54
There's a whole planet of footballers out there.

More like Bill has tightened the purse strings yet again. Can't blame him really, what with the money Martinez has wasted already. Probably told him "you got us into this mess, you get us out of it".

Then again, we never buy in January anyway. But I hope this doesn't come back to bite us in the bum. Seems like the others around us are buying though.

Jay Harris
75 Posted 31/01/2015 at 04:12:38
Christine, as you well know, I have got no time at all for this board.

I was not disagreeing with your point but merely stating that there can be no defense (pardon the pun) for this manager whose shortcomings have been laid bare for all to see.

Andy Walker
77 Posted 31/01/2015 at 12:26:44
Relegation Roberto is completely out of his depth managing a big club like ours. He has moved from contradicting himself over a week to doing it ever 24 hours.

Rabbit caught in the headlights, Bill should put him (and the fans) out of their misery asap. Appoint a manager with a track record of relegating his former team and it should be no surprise he then threatens to deliver the same for us. An appalling managerial appointment of one dreamer made by another.

Nelly Verdonghan
78 Posted 31/01/2015 at 13:33:47
He's definitely lost the plot BIGTIME!!
Gavin Ramejkis
79 Posted 31/01/2015 at 20:33:56
"Slim pickings" is absolute horseshit, there are leagues full of players and clubs with benchwarmers a damn sight better than the likes of Osman, Pienaar, Distin, Howard and Aiden McFlatley. Either Kenshite has locked his miser purse or Martinez has completely lost it - I wonder if its a mixture of both.

Black Bill wont let his golden goose fail and drop to a lower league and lose him even more chance of ever cashing in, if the results don't keep going our way Martinez will be out on his ear and we'll get some hack to steady the ship until the end of the season, nothing fancy but also nothing to write home about

Brian Waring
80 Posted 01/02/2015 at 09:39:10
Martinez mentioned after the game that it is unlikely we will be doing any business before the window shuts Monday night.

I reckon the win yesterday will somehow convince him he can go with what we've got, will be a huge mistake if he thinks that though.

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