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Martinez hails gem Stones

14/02/2015  Comments (128)  jump

Roberto Martinez believes that John Stones is up there with the best "ball-playing centre-halves" in Europe now that he has established himself as a first-choice defender at Everton.

Still only 20, Stones has emerged as one of the most exciting prospects in the English game and his return to the Blues starting XI after a three-month lay-off with an ankle injury has helped shore up a hitherto leaky defence.

Martinez, who tried to sign the Barnsley-born player when he was at Wigan Athletic, is famous for his ultra-effusive rhetoric but there are few Evertonians who would argue with his assessment of the Toffees' jewel in the crown.

"[John] has got to the point now where he is experienced and needs to be challenged on the pitch," the Catalan said in the Liverpool Echo.

He now needs to get to experience a lot of big events, 100 starts in the league and to see him grow and constantly improve.

But to see John, at such a young age, performing with that calmness and with that know-how at his age makes him one of the best ball playing centre-halves you will see in European football.

"It is as simple as that," he concluded.  

Reader Comments (128)

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer

Phil Sammon
1 Posted 14/02/2015 at 01:32:01
The first Roberto Martinez interview IÂ’ve not cringed at in well over a month.
Ernie Baywood
2 Posted 14/02/2015 at 01:53:24
"He now needs to get to experience a lot of big events"

Oh shit. This might not end well.

Terence Leong
3 Posted 14/02/2015 at 01:42:58
The key is to keeping Stones motivated and loyal enough to the club.

His emergence is one reason why I still feel strongly about keeping Martinez, because the ball playing philosophy is what will keep us developing.

StoneÂ’s development might also be instrumental in swaying some players to join the club. We all know that players donÂ’t just join a club because of the money thrown at them. Some will relish the opportunity to play with other good players.

Clive Mitchell
4 Posted 14/02/2015 at 02:22:37
Has our manager become a journalist or a marketing manager or what? I half expected the final quote in this to be "and the price, ladies and gentleman, is £xx million." Please RM be quiet until the pre-match for EL. Say 60% less. Cut out all superlatives. We really donÂ’t have a lot to gab about right now.
Harold Matthews
5 Posted 14/02/2015 at 02:43:07
True, Clive... We couldnÂ’t get anyone interested in Lukaku or Barkley but "One of the best ball playing centre backs in European football" might attract a decent fee. Sort of makes me sick.
Sam Rangle
6 Posted 14/02/2015 at 05:03:24
Just stop! Just stop Roberto. For crying out loud, what a joke this has all come to. Barkley will be the "best to ever wear an England shirt" and now Stones is "one of the best playing centre halves"....

Put a fucking fork in it and win some games.

Laurie Hartley
7 Posted 14/02/2015 at 05:15:42
Stones is much, much more than a top centre half - he is a leader and has leadership aspirations - and he is courageous. He is the one player that we must keep at all costs.

If we are ever going to get back to the top it will because we built a team around this lad.

David Barks
8 Posted 14/02/2015 at 05:31:46
HeÂ’ll be gone in a year. And then weÂ’ll hear Martinez talking about Barkley being the best English player again.
Neil Pickering
9 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:15:30
HeÂ’s a great player agreed, but please Roberto just shut the fuck up now. Fed up of him bleating on every 5 mins about how good people are. Just let the lad get on with it.

I am really beginning to loathe our manager more than any manager weÂ’ve had the past 20 yrs

Joe Foster
10 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:14:16
He canÂ’t stop himself can he. Roberto you come across more and more like some sort of junior manager always trying to be heard saying the right things but just annoying people. He must of picked this trait up from Dave Whelan. As this is probably your last season with us (as rumour has it) I suppose we will just have to put up with it.
Mike Chambers
11 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:37:16
Why has he stated what we already know. He should be talking about others who are going on about moving on or not signing contracts.
Stephen Jones
12 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:24:23
I can only assume that, because he was so underwhelming as a player, he is in awe of talented players like Stones and Barkley.

The guy just makes a rod for his own back by constantly bigging up his players to the media. Does he believe that ingratiating himself to players in this manner will somehow make them respect him? How do you drop such a player when he loses form?

How much harder is it to keep your Â’gemsÂ’ when you make them play a style of football that sees the team hovering around the relegation zone?
Please Roberto just keep your big gob shut until the end of the season and let the results do your talking for you.

Kevin Rowlands
14 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:52:41
I hate to say it but I would be astounded if this lad is with us more than 2 seasons because he truly is the real deal. For all the undeserved superlatives thrown at Barkley and Lukaku I canÂ’t say the same for Stones, he actually is doing his talking on the pitch.

I suppose the one silver lining for when we take an undoubted bath on the sale of Luk-warm-aku and Golden Bentley balls, when they finally make their dream moves to their top clubs, is that, when Stones moves on, we are going to make a huge profit; sad but true.

Declan O'Shaughnessy
15 Posted 14/02/2015 at 08:54:11
Just a quick observation for all the people pleading for Roberto to "shut the fuck up": given that we all know heÂ’s not going to quit doing interviews (not least because contractually heÂ’s not allowed to), and given that we all know heÂ’s going to say positive things (or whatever word you want to use to describe them), would it not make far more sense for all of you to stop bloody reading (and commenting) on what he says?

I mean, however weary we may, or may not, get with RobertoÂ’s media handling, IÂ’m far more weary of the same knee-jerk, thoughtless, unimaginative and, to honest, embarrassing, postings on here blaming him for literally every ill in the world. Seriously, if you donÂ’t like what he says, stop bloody reading and reacting to it.

IÂ’m taking my own advice and starting to skim over comments that go no further that attacking Martinez for having the temerity to open his mouth and say something upbeat.

Len Hawkins
16 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:05:48
ItÂ’s like listening to Fred Talbot doing a weather forecast, once is enough.
Colin Glassar
17 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:05:16
HeÂ’s the best (English centre back) IÂ’ve seen since Bobby Moore and IÂ’m not exaggerating. He has wonderful natural talent, awareness and calmness for his age.

With the likes of Stones, Coleman, Robles, McCarthy, Barkley, Lukaku etc... the future is bright, if we can keep them.

Ian Bennett
18 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:19:39
HeÂ’s a genuine class act that seems to do things so ridiculously easy. A toss up between him or McCarthy for captain in the summer for me.

Harsh on Jags? Not really. I hope we sign another centre half that puts Jags as not a guaranteed starter next season.

Mark Andersson
19 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:23:18
I stopped reading anything Martinez says. But I do enjoy reading the angry reactions.

Sadly any decent player for us will be sold, simply because we are now a small club with no real aspersions to get back into the big time. People say Martinez is a dreamer, then that goes for a lot of us, who think we are going to magically rise to the top again.

Never say never though, the world was built by dreamers.

Stephen Jones
20 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:33:19
Declan (15), yes, the Premier League managers are contractually obliged to give interviews. However, it didnÂ’t stop Ferguson boycotting them for several months/years when it suited him, or Mourinho threatening to walk out if the press dared to ask awkward questionÂ’s about Ivanotwit.

I donÂ’t criticise positivity but the problem is that Martinez just uses so many superlatives that it becomes wearing. The fans are naturally interested in what their manager has to say so they are not going to stop reading his interviews.

Other managers donÂ’t gush on about their players all the time, they probably are wise enough to see the pitfalls of this.

Joe Foster
21 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:50:00
Declan are you a site moderator? No I thought not. If you donÂ’t like people commenting on an open comment forum and start to feel weary go and have a lay down lad. I mean the temerity of us posters posting on a website itÂ’s uncalled for.
Barry Pearce
22 Posted 14/02/2015 at 09:55:52
Just like most above have said, just shut up. YouÂ’re not a salesman. You have ruined Barkley since your other ridiculous sales pitches.
Declan O'Shaughnessy
23 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:06:51
Joe, if theyÂ’re handing out gold medals for missing the point, youÂ’ll be first in line...

My point is that, given the type of person Martinez is and the job that he has to do, moaning (constantly, incessantly, without end) about his media pronouncements is akin to going outside and screaming at the clouds for hanging in the sky. ItÂ’s POINTLESS. So why do it? Over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over again?

If you donÂ’t like Martinez, why read every bloody word that he utters? Why then comment on it? Why?!? What do people get out of it? HeÂ’s not Hitler or Stalin. He doesnÂ’t need to be publicly challenged every time he appears. Why do people wind themselves up so much? Just stop listening to him. It makes far more sense.

Phil Walling
24 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:11:24
IsnÂ’t it a mystery that for all these phenomenally great players weÂ’ve won only SIX games all season.

Could it be that their manager is phenomenally out of his depth ?

Joe Foster
25 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:13:06
The clouds comment made me laugh, Declan. But as a rebut, he is managing the club I love, so I can help reading all there is about it.
Kevin Rowlands
26 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:27:20
Dec, I think itÂ’s just the frustration of a really awful season and fans want to vent. HeÂ’s the manager and that makes him first in the firing line, mate.

Just like last season when things were going well and he was getting all the plaudits, it is what it is.

Steve Brown
27 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:34:15
We should applaud RobertÂ’s linguistic dexterity! He puts us all to shame with his fluency in English.

Sure he talks about great moments and phenomenal assets, but would you prefer Moysie, Fat Sam or Tony Pullis giving their deeply eloquent post-match summary? Perhaps Phil Walling and crew can give us some fun and post for the next week in Spanish?

Que contributiones mas pesados, Senor Walling! Give that a go for starters.

Denis Richardson
28 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:35:11
I really wish Martinez would tone it down a bit. Stones has got great potential but to call him one of the best ball playing CBs in Europe after heÂ’s barely played one full season, really?

Just let the lad develop without heaping more pressure on him. Praising players we have to the high heavens is nonsense. DidnÂ’t work for Barkley, nor for Lukaku and weÂ’ve only won 6 games all season.

Wonder if there is a mental illness for being overly positive?

Bobby Thomas
29 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:37:47
Martinez certainly backs his players, relentlessly, in public. Some may say too much.

And where does it get him?

The dressing room clearly isnÂ’t happy, and is becoming "leaky". Two of our more verbally indulged "stars", both nowhere near as good as they think they are by the way, are getting chatty.

As for Ross, well he has been very, very poor. When your confidence goes, itÂ’s a bad situation, but I donÂ’t know if he has been handled great by the manager on occasion this season, especially the constant switching of position. His comments re Barkley in relation to England were absurd. I could actually imagine him getting good-natured stick in the dressing room about that one!!

Martinez can only be himself. And on this occasion I donÂ’t think heÂ’s too far off. But itÂ’s still hyperbole. And there is a respect issue at the club. I just donÂ’t feel the constant pandering helps him or the players.

Young millionaires need a short leash. Otherwise you can get the kind of performance our "𧴜 million" striker gave in the derby.

Joe Foster
30 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:50:18
Señor Steevie, I thinka thata isa a phenomenally mucho grande asko.
Barry Thompson
31 Posted 14/02/2015 at 10:44:54
And when that sad day comes when Stones finally goes, should Chelsea come knocking on the door, I hope BK quotes a figure that’s twice his true value – just like they did with Lu-cack-u.
Kevin Rowlands
33 Posted 14/02/2015 at 11:10:40
I actually donÂ’t have a problem with what heÂ’s saying here because itÂ’s bang on the money really.

The problem startÂ’s when were being told that a 㿈 million pound striker is worth 𧴜 mill when heÂ’s stank the joint all season; a lad that has totally lost his confidence and has been very poor all season is going to be the best player ever to wear an England shirt; a god awful derby where we had one shot all game, and had to wait till the 86th minute for that, was "fascinating"; a drab 0-0 home draw against relegation fodder WBA, where Foster didnÂ’t have to make a save, was "a phenominal effort"... and the list goes on.

We’re Evertonians – probably the most realistic fans anywhere... please don’t feed us horseshit. And to tell us "Don’t read it and don’t comment on it" is ridiculous really, because we’re fans and these stupid quotes are all over the press and in match reports – of course we’re going to read it and comment.

Trevor Peers
34 Posted 14/02/2015 at 11:23:19
Roberto, I think the burning issue we wanted you to comment on was LukakuÂ’s statement about playing for a bigger club. I presume you have no issue with the player, as with Mirallas; I think the fans are baffled by your silence. Great that youÂ’re looking for the positives and Stones is a class act.

Colin Glassar
35 Posted 14/02/2015 at 11:37:48
Declan, itÂ’s raining outside and that phenomenon is surely down to Martinez.

Señor Martinez, please stop encouraging your players (and make the rain stop instead) otherwise resign and we can get another manager in like Simeone, Ancellotti or Guardiola. As Big Sam, Pulis and Harry (our first choices) are currently unavailable.

Phil Walling
36 Posted 14/02/2015 at 11:50:56
Colin, itÂ’s good (I think) that there is at least one supporter who thinks Martinez is doing a good job and that there is no cause for concern over the teamÂ’s abysmal record.

No need for any of us to learn Spanish - or even English !- and make public statements as we are not paid thousands a week to manage our team. On the contrary, some of us put thousands into the club kitty each season and thus have every right to comment on how it is being ill-managed.

I donÂ’t deny you the right to worship at the SpaniardÂ’s shrine so allow others to take a less enthusiastic view of his current achievements.....please !

Colin Glassar
37 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:04:31
WhoÂ’s denying your god given right to criticise Martinez, Phil? Heaven forbid you wake up one day and canÂ’t find a reason to have a go at him.

Carry on your crusade Phil as I enjoy your Martinez baiting and, as the philosopher Descartes once said, "I hate your ideas but I will die defending your right to express them".

ps: I donÂ’t think IÂ’m alone in my support for the manager Phil. We are legion.

Phil Walling
38 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:32:19
What is it about him that so inspires you, Colin? His shoes?
David Hallwood
39 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:19:16
I understand that people on this site have an issue with Martinez and our car crash of a season, BUT FFS gents give it a rest.

Firstly, as the manager of a major prem club (yes weÂ’re still that) he will be expected to give regular interviews with the media, in fact managers get fined if they donÂ’t. So whatÂ’s he supposed to say when asked about John Stones? "The ladÂ’s a fuckinÂ’ liabilty" " A piece of caramalised awld shite."?

Anyone who watches the game realises that Stones is special; now whether heÂ’s a one season wonder or goes on to become one of the true greats remains to be seen, but IÂ’m glad to see him in a blue shirt, and would be well pissed off if he was sold, in what is beginning to look like a fire sale in the summer.

Criticism of managers is part and parcel of being a football supporter, but the vitriol heaped on Martinez is becoming almost Cleese-esque.

Joe Foster
40 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:32:49
We are all entitled to our views on here. Colin G you do interest me though with your unwavering support for RM. Can I ask you this one question Collin ... Do you think RM is doing a good job this season?
James Stewart
41 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:36:21
More like his shoes than his tactics Phil.

First sensible thing out of MartinezÂ’s mouth for awhile although we donÂ’t want him talked up too much or bigger fish will circle.

Said it before on other threads Stones is the best player at Everton and the only one currently at the level of a Champions League player. Week in week out he performs against the best. Which is more than can be said of the BarkleyÂ’s, LukakuÂ’s and MirallasÂ’s of this world.

The sooner we make him Captain the better.

Kevin Rowlands
42 Posted 14/02/2015 at 12:34:08
Col, in the past IÂ’ve been a big supporter but this season has put me right off, itÂ’s the same players who finished 5th last season, whatÂ’s happened?

The blame has placed on him IÂ’m afraid, bad decisions, bad tactics, puzzling substitutions or lack thereof, no discipline see Lukaku, Mirallas, no team spirit, disillusioned fans, ridiculous press conferences, itÂ’s a never ending list of fuck ups on his part.

Look at the last game for a recent example: Why was Robles dropped? Why was Besic and not Barry subbed? Them two decisions of his ultimately cost us getting something. Hopefully he can turn it around but, after what IÂ’ve seen this season, IÂ’m not encouraged.

Phil Rodgers
44 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:34:18
Best player at the club by a mile for me. Outstanding.
Phil Rodgers
45 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:38:07
Joe, donÂ’t go on live forum then, mate. Anyone who says anything negative about Martinez gets crucified by certain individuals. ItÂ’s unbearable on there these days.
Brian Hennessy
46 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:12:23
It seems yet again that when people express an opinion here against what Martinez says or does they are basically being told by a minority to shut the hell up.

This is an open forum for people to express their views.

IÂ’m getting a bit sick to be honest of some of those who support Martinez consantatly trying to deny people their right to speak their minds.

If someone thinks RM should not have made these latest comments they are entitled so say so on this thread.

Declan @23 - you say "If you donÂ’t like Martinez, why read every bloody word that he utters? Why then comment on it?"

So you are basically saying we should just put up with what we have and not comment on our manager!

Not going to happen Declan.

We may not always agree with someones opinion but they are free to express that opinion when they see fit.

Colin Glassar
47 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:10:44
Guys, I’m not not denying your right to criticise but don’t deny my right to defend him either. This season has been utter garbage but I will give him the summer and autumn to change things around. If he doesn’t, he will go simple as.OFM was given a second chance – why not Martinez?
Jimmy Salt
48 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:43:13
Ha, What Eugene said.

IÂ’m starting to think Roberto has been caught in someoneÂ’s wardrobe in the past.

My catÂ’s just scratched my fekin couch... who can I blame?

Brian Hennessy
49 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:50:04
Colin, nobody is trying to defend your right to defend Roberto, but making comments like, "Carry on your crusade, Phil, as I enjoy your Martinez baiting", thatÂ’s the type of comment I donÂ’t agree with.

Martin Mason
50 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:49:48
Wonderful player, a credit to himself and to the club for getting and developing him. He reminds me of Franz Beckenbauer, Bobby Moore and, I hate to say it, Alan Hansen at his best.

These are the type of players that we need at Everton but remember, every game he has like the one at Chelsea brings the day he goes just that bit closer. He is above our level but hopefully we can unearth another gem and benefit ffrom the work weÂ’ve done on JS with a good price. We mustnÂ’t let Luke Garbut go, please Everton

Joe Foster
51 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:50:05
I have seen it, Phil; itÂ’s a shame really all we all want is the best for the club. RM is a divisive character among the fans and that is something only he can rectify. The power is in his hands.
Denis Richardson
52 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:44:56
David 39 & others - think youÂ’re missing the point a bit.

Most people here have no issue with Martinez praising Stones (or any other of our players for that matter) when their playing well. The issue we have is the complete over-the-top extreme compliments he comes out with.

It gets to the stage that you can’t take anything he says seriously anymore and he just sounds like an idiot – which doesn’t exactly help our image. Praising Stones (yes), saying he’s one of the best ball playing CBs in Europe, after not even having played a full season in the top flight, erm..No!!

What exactly is Stones to make of it? What are the players supposed to make of similar comments made about them and other players? There are only two things that can happen imo. The player starts believing the hype or the player thinks the manager is a tool. Either way, it doesnÂ’t lead to anything good.

The guy just cannot seem to control himself when he talks, everything is so over the top and a lot of it is complete bollocks. We can see it, everyone else can see it – it’s not good for Everton FC. Note I’m not just talking about Stones here – practically every week he comes out with some utter garbage. This is all fine IF we’re playing well and getting results but not when our season has been a write off before we even got to the half way stage.

I cannot remember ever reading an interview with Martinez where he has been unhappy, angry or criticised the team or players for not performing well. I don’t agree with managers criticising players in public but at least call a spade a spade when the team has played shite instead of trying to sugar coat everything. This latest comment is just another OTT RM special to add to the list, no doubt it wont be long until the next one – Barry one of the best veteran midfielders in Europe? McGeady one of the trickiest wingers in the league?

Joe Foster
53 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:59:54
Colin, this seems different. We have all seen it/read it and heard it this season. Something is wrong at the club, I know you kind of hoped it was EtoÂ’oÂ’s influence but a lot of people donÂ’t think that was the main mitigating factor. I donÂ’t think 8 years of RM will do my blood pressure any good either.
Eugene Ruane
54 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:57:24
Brian Hennesey (46) - "IÂ’m getting a bit sick to be honest of some of those who support Martinez constantly trying to deny people their right to speak their minds"

Could you explain SPECIFICALLY how your Â’right to speak your mindÂ’ could be (or has been) denied?

You definitely appear to be suggesting that this is the case but I can see no evidence of it.

(Surely youÂ’re not offering Â’if you donÂ’t like it, donÂ’t read itÂ’ as evidence?)

Frank Crewe
55 Posted 14/02/2015 at 13:48:49
According to RMÂ’s, apparently never ending and increasingly absurd pronouncements, we have a team of world class superstars. So why arenÂ’t we in the top four?
Phil Walling
56 Posted 14/02/2015 at 14:07:13
ItÂ’s good we donÂ’t all sing from the same hymn sheet else TW would be a boring place to visit. Suggesting that you switch off if you have a contrary view to someone else is a bit weird in a debating chamber!

I have no pathological dislike for Martinez and he seems a personable bloke. I just donÂ’t think he should ever have been appointed manager of the club I happen to support and spend money on. ItÂ’s not as though I can change allegiance to our neighbours, is it?

Eugene Ruane
57 Posted 14/02/2015 at 14:23:58
Â’Switch off if you have a contrary viewÂ’ is an odd suggestion for a debating chamber.

Switch off/donÂ’t read it if you donÂ’t like it, is logical and very sensible advice.

ThereÂ’s a difference.

Bill Gall
58 Posted 14/02/2015 at 14:14:42
I have no problem with the manager praising his players even if sometimes his expressions are a little over the top.
My only worry is if J.Stones performances deteriorate, as have other players he consistantly praised.

There is no doubt that the potencial is there for this young man to become a top prospect but lets remember he has not yet played a full season in the premier league.

As for .R.M. he is no different from other managers who praise there players exept for the words he uses to do it.and we should all be used to them by now.

Dave Abrahams
60 Posted 14/02/2015 at 14:44:16
I have no problem with Martinez speaking about the players and the club affairs, I would much prefer it if he just told something that we donÂ’t already know.

IÂ’ve, honestly, tried to take no notice of his utterings since October simply because his ultra pro Everton sayings bear no resemblance to the real state of the club.

However IÂ’ m still hopeful he will turn the state of the club around but, to be truthful, it is now more in hope than expectation.

Colin Glassar
61 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:04:39
It was tongue-in-cheek, Brian. Phil and I have crossed swords many a time but always with the utmost respect. I donÂ’t think Phil has a problem with that.

Btw Phil, not only his brown shoes but his chewing technique as well, phenomenal.

Kevin Rowlands
62 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:07:37
Eugene, I havenÂ’t liked nearly Everton game I watched this season, maybe I should have switched the TV off but being a fan itÂ’s not really a choice is it, now throwing a brick through the screen..... believe me IÂ’ve been tempted a few times this season.
Tony Hill
63 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:13:36
I think Stones has great potential but his defensive work is far from the finished product in my opinion. He is still learning as you would expect and was significantly to blame for West HamÂ’s two goals at their place in the cup. He is prone to youthful lapses when he overplays and his positional sense is, in truth, at the development stage.

He needs to be treated with care and it will not help him to be prematurely hailed as a European master.

Brian Hennessy
64 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:22:07
Colin, point taken - At the risk of me getting labeled as pro Martinez, I really do like that black overcoat he wears and the shoes too if I be honest.

Seriously though, hats off to RM and he command of the English language, but if he was to just substitute the word "Phenomenal", with "very good", he would get much less flack from all of us.

Eugene Ruane
65 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:34:12
Kevin Rowlands (62) - "Eugene, I havenÂ’t liked nearly every Everton game I watched this season, maybe I should have switched the TV off but being a fan itÂ’s not really a choice is it"

No I suppose not...but what you read (listen to) certainly is.

I mean what would your advice be for someone who read Mills & Boon novels and constantly complained Â’these are shite!Â’?

(Clue: Â’Well, donÂ’t fucking read them!Â’)

Kevin Rowlands
66 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:50:46
ER, I agree with the reading part although some fans do like to read match reports and thatÂ’s when they come across these silly quotes of his. I do agree in his defense though that some of it is a language issue but at the same time his missus is Scottish, youÂ’d think sheÂ’d have a word, especially about the over use of one word in particular.
Breandan Clarke
67 Posted 14/02/2015 at 15:28:52
I think IÂ’ve been more inclined to support Martinez just based on the over the top negativity on this site. Criticising and berating him for everything, and I mean everything, he says or does, is senseless in my opinion and have to agree with Declan that IÂ’ve visited ToffeeWebÂ’s comments less and less recently. Nothing has changed drastically with the team either way, so everything that could have been said to criticise/defend him as already been said.

IÂ’d hope Roberto gets some time to freshen the squad this summer, he deserves some time. If itÂ’s more of the same next November/December then yes a change might be best. If he stays then all our expectations will have to change unfortunately.

Steve Woods
68 Posted 14/02/2015 at 16:00:14
The only "hailing" I want to hear Martinez doing is for a taxi for himself and his ex-Wigan back room staff.
Denis Richardson
69 Posted 14/02/2015 at 17:12:16
Just a note re the Martinez language thing.

Martinez arrived on these shores in 1995. HeÂ’s been in the UK for 20 (yes twenty) years working in an environment where English is by far the most predominant language spoken. I really donÂ’t think he has any issue with the English language, especially when you add the fact that his wife is Scottish.....

He needs to put down the thesaurus and speak as a normal person would... as well as stop using the word ’phenomenal’ – nothing Everton have done this season has come close to justifying that description.

Phil Walling
70 Posted 14/02/2015 at 17:16:31
Getting back to the subject of this article - John Stones - it did strike me that we are so starved of success these days that a kid only has to put three or four decent games together and he is hailed as the second coming.

ItÂ’s happened to Barkley in the past but once his performances fell off, the verdict soon reverts to Â’shiteÂ’ or Â’no more than promisingÂ’. Of course, we all recognise that Roberto sees all his geese as swans but the swing between extremes on here is mildly amusing.

Darren Hind
71 Posted 14/02/2015 at 17:28:03
I know what you are saying, Phil. It doesnÂ’t take much for a youngster from any club to be labeled "World Class" and we are no different.

But I think Stones is the most complete defender IÂ’ve seen in a blue shirt and weÂ’ve had a few goodÂ’ns down the years. He has done more than put 3-4 decent games together. HeÂ’s already doing things seasoned internationals wont even dare try.

Classy, composed, fast, strong and brave as a lion... the kidÂ’s got half a chance.

Mike Childs
72 Posted 14/02/2015 at 17:36:45
Love Stones a real pleasure to watch and hopefully we get to watch him in our Blue for a long time. Still think Jimmy Mac is our best player.
Declan O'Shaughnessy
73 Posted 14/02/2015 at 17:57:27
Just to clarify (or try to) my earlier comments, as they seem to have been (willfully or otherwise) slightly misinterpreted: I would never deny, try to deny, seek to deny or wish to deny anyone the right to speak their mind.

What I was trying to tease out is the phenomenon of Roberto Martinez seemingly winding people up with his media briefings. Seriously, some people on here seem to get their blood pressure up every time Roberto opens his mouth. Then they post something sparkling along the lines of "Martinez, shut the fuck up". Would it not be easier to avoid his comments altogether and not suffer from increased blood pressure?

Jeremy Clarkson winds me up no end (see also Nigel Farage, David Cameron, most the current coalition government, Robbie Savage, David Starkey, Alan Shearer and god knows how many others). So, when they are on TV, or in print etc. I change the channel or turn the page. I don’t read what these people say, because I fundamentally disagree with their world view. I’m never going to change their opinion so I don’t engage with it.

I understand that Martinez is the manager of the club that you (and I) love, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t just ignore him. You’re not obliged to respond to every little thing he says...

But, if you do choose to respond. why not engage with his comments and challenge them? Why not analyse, and dissect, what he says, showing where he’s wrong (either empirically or subjectively)? Write something cogent, interesting, analytical. But when the comment is no more than "Oi, Martinez, shut the fuck up", then I take objection.

Michael Kenrick
Editorial Team
74 Posted 14/02/2015 at 18:09:46
Breandan, it annoys me to read lazy posts like yours that seek to bundle up the views you personally disagree with and put them into this little box labeled "over-the-top negativity" that you then use characterize this site.

"Nothing has changed drastically with the team either way, so everything that could have been said to criticise/defend him as already been said." — That’s hardly the point, as there is Everton news of some form every day of the week, and a healthy desire for commenting on it, that perhaps you neither share nor respect.

We have a very wide range of posters offering a very wide range of opinions, as any cursory reading of the comment threads will show. If you’re not interested in reading comments or accepting that they reflect at least some portion of Everton supporters, we might be less inclined to see your arrogant and derisory comments posted so freely on here.

Franny Porter
75 Posted 14/02/2015 at 18:13:02
Wonder if could "phenomonalise" Hibbo and make us a few quid?
Colin Glassar
79 Posted 14/02/2015 at 18:36:15
Phil, surely you can see the potential the lad has? He can go straight to the top if he wants to. His tackling, positional play, spatial awareness for such a young man is frankly, phenomenal.

Many young players lose their way due to such factors as injuries (Woodgate), gambling (Gillespie), mental illness (Collymore), booze (Gazza), drugs (fowler), outside interests (Owen), sex addiction (Didi Hamman) etc....

Let’s just hope young Stonesy avoids these pitfalls.

Jay Harris
80 Posted 14/02/2015 at 18:56:13
I remember Jack Rodwell being hailed as the English Franz Beckenbaur and look where that went. At least Moyes did not go into superlatives before they were due.

John is playing well at the moment in a poorly performing side. LetÂ’s see how he performs against some of EuropeÂ’s best (assuming we go that far) before he gets legend status.

Sid Logan
81 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:06:09
Jay. There is no comparison between Jack Rodwell and John Stones. Although Rodwell had his supporters, he had just as many doubters – and their number grew the more he played.

John Stones has few if any doubters because, in every game, he just gets better.

Andy Crooks
82 Posted 14/02/2015 at 18:56:53
Good to see you back, Eugene. I know this doesn’t seem sensible, but I quite like reading stuff I don’t like.
Colin Glassar
83 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:11:04
I always had high hopes for Rodwell but OFM ruined him IMO. He was always rushed back from injury and was once played as a winger, where he injured himself severely. Ginger always said he would be a centre back but never actually played him there. Sound familiar?

I hope the lad gets his career back on track but his injuries appear to be chronic.

Sam Hoare
84 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:14:05
I love Stones. Shame Barkley has not been able to do what he has this season which is cement his first team place, step up to the plate when things are going wrong, and prove himself as one of the most gifted young players in the country.
Sid Logan
85 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:16:18

I know what you’re saying about Rodwell but one of the huge failings he developed was to pass the ball and then move himself in to a position where he couldn’t received it back. Barkley does it occasionally.

The most confident players always show for the ball.

Fintan Spode
86 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:15:04
CG (post 37) - vibrant debate is no excuse to get careless with your philosophers ’I disapprove of what you say but will defend to death your right to say it’ was Voltaire not Descartes. My god, man, this is not RAWK, let’s keep our standards up!

ps: I agree with you otherwise...

Colin Glassar
87 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:32:05
Fintan, lad, I couldn’t remember who said it so I threw out Descartes (I think, therefore I am). I will make a note about brushing up on my philosophers but tbh, I thought it was Eddie Yeats from Corrie.

Sid, I get your point about Jack but I still think, if only he was given a chance in central defence, his career could’ve taken a different path.

Phil Walling
88 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:21:43
Is Stones a true phenomenon – a remarkable or exceptional person, a prodigy, a wonder ?

All these superlatives were used about Rooney, Rodwell and Barkley. I even heard similar words used about Cadamarteri and Jeffers (I ask you!).

Like Colin, I would like to think so, but given that only one of that lot has become a truly great player, I think we should wait until next season before according the Barnsley Boy that honour. Or would ’curse’ be more appropriate?

Fintan Spode
89 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:37:37
CG – don’t knock Eddie Yates!

As for Rodwell, he is just one of those great unfulfilled talents; how many of those have we seen over the years? Stonesy on the other hand is the real deal and I still have great hopes for Barkley. I wasn’t a great fan of OFM but perhaps his slow development approach to Barkley was right after all.

David Hallwood
90 Posted 14/02/2015 at 19:40:57
IMO Rodwell was a CB not a DM even though no manager’s played him as a CB.

One last thing about Martinez: managers fall into many categories, and one of them is never criticise players in public. In the Fergie days, a Man Utd player could get sent off for killing a player and Fergie and the special one for that matter shouts ’conspiracy’

Moving on to ’Arry, well he slags (or slagged) his players publicly; now Martinez ’bigs’ the players up which Wenger can be ’accused’ of.

I realise that we are all pissed off and everyone has a right to their point of view, but some of the posts are laced with pure hatred towards the man, his football, his language skills and probably his taste in footwear.

The jury’s out whether Martinez is up to the job and there’s a lot to discuss/debate, but the way this is going some people will be coming on here and just write Twat! Twat! Twat! Twat! etc, like some demented football chant.

Dave Abrahams
91 Posted 14/02/2015 at 20:05:50
David (90) I agree with most of your points... but Bobby should have black or ox blood shoes when wearing dark clothes.
Andy Crooks
92 Posted 14/02/2015 at 20:27:08
David, I agree about Rodwell. I always thought his midfield role was preparation for centre back. Stones actually reminds me of a young Ferdinand.
Colin Glassar
93 Posted 14/02/2015 at 20:49:26
David, I’m in total agreement.

As for Dave’s snidey colour of shoes comment, I’d like to state that, as an assiduous brown shoe wearer myself, I love Bobby’s choice of shoes – even though he wears Jimmy Choo’s and Gucci and I wear Clarks and Primark.

Laurie Hartley
94 Posted 14/02/2015 at 20:59:34

I agree with your comment above:

With the likes of Stones, Coleman, Robles, McCarthy, Barkley, Lukaku etc... the future is bright, if we can keep them.

With one proviso – they are all what I would describe for want of a better word "dashing players". To get the best out if them, you have to play them in a system that suits.

All the best Everton teams moved the ball out of defence and up the field very quickly. I would like to see our manager change his system to play to the strengths of these players.

Phil, I understand your concerns about bigging Stones up to soon – but he is different. Have a look into his eyes.

This lad has also like Lukaku expressed his football ambition – he wants to be captain of Everton and England. I think he will be.

Laurie Hartley
95 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:09:18
Ermer bigging!
John Keating
96 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:09:50
If we can keep the likes of Barkley, Stones and McCarthy, I’d like to see McCarthy made captain. There’s something narky about him that wants to come out – he won’t take shit!

He reminds me a bit of Tony Kay – and that can’t be bad!

Stones might be a good un but seems a bit quiet to me...

Colin Glassar
97 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:19:09
John, in the last few games I’ve seen Stones screaming his head off at Jags and other players. Against Chelsea he was doing a lot of the organising. But tbh, I prefer MF players to be captain so I’d go along with Macca.
Andy Meighan
98 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:18:07
Fucking hell, Eugene. Thought you’d passed over, if you get my gist; obviously not. Great to have you back. Now let’s have more of your classics like Bingham always talked like Stanley Baxter dressed as a woman or something of that ilk. You know where I’m coming from don’t you? Anyway, you cant keep a great man down
Kevin Rowlands
99 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:22:25
Ok I’m going to put this to bed hopefully for good, if you google or look up the word phenomenal in a dictionary these are the explanations: highly extraordinary, prodigious, uncommon, outstanding, surpassing expectations, unprecedented, remarkable and extra ordinary.

Some examples of ’phenomenal’: Ryan Giggs career, Tiger Woods blowing the field away in the US open by 14 shots, Federer, Nadal, Djokovic’s grand slam records and careers, Jack Nicklaus career, Mcilroy blowing away the field at the US open and PGA, Floyd Mayweather’s win record, Germany beating Brazil 7-1 on their home turf... you get the picture.

Something that’s not phenomenal: The performances of our players after a drab 0-0 home draw vs WBA.

It’s a very powerful word and something that you witness on very rare occasions, someone at Everton or in his inner circle needs to have a word in his ear and advise him to just stop using the fucking word and some of his problems will be solved.

Colin Glassar
100 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:49:18
That was phenomenal, Kevin. Thanks for clearing that one up.
Kevin Rowlands
101 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:54:41
Thanks Col, I myself would put it in the rather good category but thanks for your support.

Btw I’m still in the "I hope he turns it around" camp and have actually met him and had a conversation; he’s a super nice guy. I’m just a bit twitchy at this point.

Colin Glassar
102 Posted 14/02/2015 at 22:06:53
I understand Kev, we all want things to turn around, and quickly.

I’ve just cheered myself up by watching highlights of our derby win at anfilled on the video section. Great goals by Rats and Liniker. Bloody Liniker.
Darren Hind
103 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:44:52
Colin #79.

So "Injuries, Gambling, Mental Illness, Booze, Drugs, Outside Interest and Sex Addiction" will hinder your career? ... Those bastards tried to tell me I woudn’t make it because I was crap.

Tony Abrahams
104 Posted 14/02/2015 at 21:55:47
After half a season most of us thought Jelavic, was top drawer.
After one full season, people had the same feelings about Martinez, being a top manager.

Stones looks like he could go all the way to the top, but letÂ’s reserve judgement, Boss, and let him get on with learning his trade. Please!

Kevin Rowlands
105 Posted 14/02/2015 at 22:13:42
Nice one, Darren, laughing my arse off, so no one ever told you that you were phenomenal then?
Tony Abrahams
106 Posted 14/02/2015 at 22:15:21
As a footballer, or as a comedian Darren?
Colin Glassar
107 Posted 14/02/2015 at 22:19:23
Darren, you probably were crap but I think you’d have been a phenomenal manager with your unique qualities.
Len Hawkins
109 Posted 15/02/2015 at 09:21:18
Descartes? Voltaire? who are they? The best defender ever to play football (in his own mind) Mark Lawrenson said on MotD or FF last week that Stones is going to be a GREAT of the game so there we are.
Jimmy Salt
110 Posted 15/02/2015 at 07:02:17
I just wonder how Bobby will describe us if we actually are phenomenal one day, he might just explode..
Colin Glassar
111 Posted 15/02/2015 at 09:59:47
Len, Descartes played for Chelsea and France. Can't remember who Voltaire played for, before my time.
Ernie Baywood
112 Posted 15/02/2015 at 11:47:20
Rodwell could have been something, but sadly he turned out to be one of those "great athlete" types. Obviously I'm talking about his touch and pace allied to his height and strength as his body rarely functioned. In fact, you could say the same for a few of our hopes... particularly the raw pace of Cadamarteri and Branch.

Jeffers a bit different in that he was an intelligent footballer that lacked athletic attributes and any other sort of intelligence between his massive lugs.

Stones looks every bit the smart footballer. Also seems to have a head on him. Never really figured out if he has pace because he reads the game so well but it doesn't appear a weakness. Is he quick? He could do with a bit more size but that will come.

What I dread is not seeing this lad in blue when he's 26 or so.

Bob Heyward
113 Posted 15/02/2015 at 13:32:53
There he goes again! Too much praise for a young man with a long development ahead of him, raising the player's expectations and ego, leading to an increased level of managerial hyperbole, until one day we have a player who is convinced that Everton are unworthy of him...

Remember Martinez on Lukaku? Oh yes, we saw the same there, didn't we? Now our 'unplayable' and 'special' 'league's best number 10', who's 㿈-million price tag was 'cheap' feels, at age 21, that he's too big for Everton. I wonder why, Roberto?

Lukaku, Mirallas, McCarthy, Coleman, Garbutt, Barkley, Stones... all players that have been hyped by El Paed Piper, and all players that could go in Summer. I've never known a situation like this for potential player departures in 40 years. I think part of the blame is down to Martinez's foolish quotes, married to his inability to deliver results.

Bob Heyward
114 Posted 15/02/2015 at 14:27:19
Now, see how Villa just got through in the Cup. New manager, through to the next round, players talking of 'taking the confidence of being into the next round through to our League form'.

Us? Retain failing manager. Fail against West Ham, twice (who West Brom – WEST BLOODY BROM – stuff for 4-0 in the next Cup game), so loosing a golden chance to inject some of the same confidence and swagger Villa just gained.

I could weep, I really could.

Still, at least the apologists still see plenty to be positive about under Bobby! Sigh... Fiddling while Rome burns.

Ian Burns
116 Posted 15/02/2015 at 18:55:12
As always, I read every post on every thread on TW and whilst the editors/managers of this website allow me to comment then I have the right to criticise within reason.

For somebody to tell me not to read what the manager is saying or watch interviews on television or listen on radio is an insult.

Declan (#79) - if you don't read or listen to the long list of people you name, how do you know what they are saying and therefore how can you criticise what they are commenting on?

As for the OS, of course John Stones has potential and of course he is one terrific player. We are Everton supporters and we can see good; great or not so good or not so great players - I like to think we are educated enough in football matters to recognise attributes where they are applicable.

What we don't need is for RM to go over the top with his comments. Praise their development to date; encourage but don't speak about them as if they have already arrived as the players, they will think they've nothing else to learn and wonder why Barcelona/Real Madrid; Bayern Munich are not on the phone the next day trying to prise them away into this football fantasy world. I am sure this is what has happened to Barkley.

As for RM, I can't let my post go without making my feelings yet again known that I believe we are going backwards and need to replace him without delay.

Nothing personal – nice man; great shoes – not good enough for EFC.

Dave Abrahams
117 Posted 15/02/2015 at 19:12:33
Earnie (#112), Ernie you are an eternal optimist if you think John Stones is going to be here for the next five years.
Allan Board
118 Posted 15/02/2015 at 20:00:28
A pleasure to watch this young fella. A class act.

Shame certain other individuals donÂ’t act like he does...

Fintan Spode
119 Posted 15/02/2015 at 20:24:02
Len (109), Voltaire was leading French player a few years back, a real thinker about the game, played alongside Robespierre who was also promising, but eventually it all went to his head. I guess they could be compared with Stones and Lukaku
Colin Glassar
120 Posted 15/02/2015 at 20:39:53
Bloody hell, now our poor form is now down to "foolish quotes". ThatÂ’s a new one.
Rob Halligan
121 Posted 15/02/2015 at 20:57:12
Colin, if I were you mate IÂ’d just give up. Once people have formed an opinion on something, they will never change. If Martinez were to win us the EL this season, some will still find faults with him. I bet some are already calling Tim Sherwood the great saviour of Aston villa, amazing what a change of manager and all that, can do for a club.
Brin Williams
123 Posted 15/02/2015 at 22:21:22
Totally agree with Martinez, the lad just oozes class.

Colin Glassar
124 Posted 15/02/2015 at 22:35:59
Fintan, was it Marat or Danton that was sent for an early bath? Robespierre was very effective but a bit unbalanced. My favourite French player was Jean Jacques Rousseau, he had a deft touch and a way with words.

Rob, I can’t mate I just can’t. The injustice of it all has left me with insomnia and loss of appetite.

Keith Harrison
125 Posted 15/02/2015 at 23:10:42
He's the next Hansen, as I've said all along! He'll also leave in the summer when he sees Garbutt go and Roberto expecting him to carry the rest of the malfunctioning team on his young shoulders. Someone in the club needs to be giving Roberto a stiff talking to on what is expected at Everton – especially with the best squad on paper we have had for years.
Simon Temme
126 Posted 16/02/2015 at 03:46:21
Holding out for a hero!.... I saw Bonny Tyler perfom that in a tiny gay bar in Portugal and that was her local.

However, John Stones... Yes; Besic... Yes; McCarthy... Yes; Barkley...Yes... et al.

We have a great core of fine young players but who is going to get the best out of them before they get heads turned or lose confidence?

My hope for the club is attractive, exciting football with no fear and if RM can deliver that, then great. (As many posters have said... 6 wins this season so far?!?)

If not then someone who can please and at a sensible time, pre- or post-season, make sure they are able to mine the rich talent they have at their disposal.

Fintan Spode
127 Posted 16/02/2015 at 09:24:21
CG, interesting point about French philosophers who got the chop, Perhaps that is the answer to our chronic underperformance this year = install a guillotine in Gwladys Street... Watch us climb the league then!

James Newcombe
128 Posted 16/02/2015 at 11:18:19
I remember being completely underwhelmed that Moyes had signed another bloody defender! Turned out it was the best parting gift we could have had. Stones is an immense talent, and for a defender an absolute pleasure to watch.

He'll move on one day, but he's going to have to be the world's most expensive defender to make it worth our while.

Colin Glassar
129 Posted 16/02/2015 at 11:24:02
You’re joking right, James? BK will think he’s the smartest man on earth if he gets 㿀M for Stonesy. He needs to go to the Levy school of football finance to learn a trick or two.
Nick Page
130 Posted 16/02/2015 at 11:37:37
Have we sold him yet?

Wonder who our team will be next year? According to the utter gobshite print media, we might just have a goalie and a couple of arl arses in defence and Barry, perhaps. Not that they comment on Everton, I'm just subtracting all the players we're selling to the Sky 4+2 and mega European monster clubs like Wolfsburg.

Although Arsenal might come back in for Barry, so don't hold yer breath on that one as they were really desperate last year, according to various sources.

Steve Harris
132 Posted 16/02/2015 at 16:30:12
Colin you say that Moyes ruined Rodwell by playing out of position, even playing him on the wing, isn't that what Martinez is doing with Barkley?
James Joseph
133 Posted 16/02/2015 at 16:49:30
Colin (83), Moyes did play Rodwell at centre-half, admittedly only in a couple of pre-season friendlies back in 2009. His performances in those games, away at Coventry and Blackpool, were so shambolic that it's no surprise he was reluctant to play him there again. I was at Bloomfield Road for the second when he was both bullied and given the runaround by an ageing Jason Euell and there was no way, at that stage in his career, that he could play at the back against any experienced striker.
Colin Glassar
134 Posted 16/02/2015 at 17:28:05
That’s what I implied (83) Steve. Why do managers do this? Is it some sort of chemical imbalance in their brains?
James, I didn’t know that. Point taken.
Wayne Smyth
135 Posted 16/02/2015 at 17:30:59
Steve, I think the once possible saving grace for Martinez is that he generally hasn't had options when he has used Barkley wide.

If we're still playing Barkley on the wing next season when Martinez will have had a chance to ensure we have 4 decent wingers, then I'll be the first to slate him for it.

Talking of good youngsters, I think we've actually got quite a glut coming through. Galloway is apparently very good, as is Grant(at Motherwell), Browning, Garbutt and Ledson. I think they will all make the first team, assuming (Grant and Garbutt) extend their contracts.

I think most of them are at the stage where they really need proper competitive action to push on. Browning certainly looked in a similar bracket to Stones when he has played, but just hasn't had the same opportunities.

Colin Glassar
136 Posted 16/02/2015 at 22:50:34
What about George Green, Wayne? After that wonder goal he was never heard of again.
David Hallwood
137 Posted 16/02/2015 at 22:54:53
Colin Glassar (124) It was definitely Marat that got the early bath, and he got a bit more than a three match ban.
Colin Glassar
138 Posted 16/02/2015 at 23:06:22
Thought it was him David. Poor bugger dropped his soap and..... whoops a daisy. Those Jacobins were dirty sods.
Mark Evans
139 Posted 20/02/2015 at 23:50:26
Wonder if he still thinks he's a gem after Thursday night? He was badly caught out and dwelled too much on the ball on a couple of earlier occasions. Still, he will hopefully learn from his mistakes and improve accordingly.

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