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Martinez rejects Alcaraz criticism

20/03/2015  Comments (102)  jump
The team's defensive performance was poor

Roberto Martinez insists making Antolin Alcaraz a scapegoat for Everton's Europa League exit is unfair, offering a passionate defence of his under-fire centre-half following Thursday night's 5-2 thrashing at the hands of Dynamo Kiev.

Martinez insists the whole team were to blame for their poor defensive show at the Olympic Stadium, and says 32-year-old Alcaraz was left exposed too often.

The Everton manager kept faith with the Paraguayan alongside captain Phil Jagielka after the pair had played in the first leg win over Kiev, and then helped the Blues to a clean sheet against Newcastle last weekend.

Evertonians were angered that John Stones was not recalled to the starting line-up after recovering from a virus but Martinez says it would have been a risk to throw him back in at the deep end.

Antolin has the experience of playing in Europe before and John is a young man and sometimes we need to give him the right game to compete for his place, Martinez said.

We are now looking back at the game and it is very easy to say this should have been done' but you need to allow football to make the decisions.

Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that.

Second, since he had the virus John has not played any football so it would be a major, major risk to throw him into a game of that intensity with the last experience he had away from home in Europe when he got sent off.

It was important to have continuity in the back four that kept a clean sheet on Sunday and that is the reason. Martinez added: Antolin had to deal with too many actions that we, as a team, didn't stop well enough on Thursday night.

I don't think defensively he had a poor game, I think as a team we put our defence and keeper under immense pressure because our defensive performance as a team wasn't up to standard.

Quotes sourced from Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (102)

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Patrick Murphy
1 Posted 21/03/2015 at 10:29:16
Roberto Martinez speaking about Alcaraz's performance in Kiev:

"I don't think defensively he had a poor game, I think as a team we put our defence and keeper under immense pressure because our defensive performance as a team wasn't up to standard."

If he thought that wasn't a poor game by his centre-back then I am amazed. It's one thing to not criticise individual players; it's another to not recognise that somebody's game wasn't up to the required standard.

Ian McDowell
2 Posted 21/03/2015 at 13:24:43
Alcatraz must be dropped for tomorrow. Stones and Garbutt should both come into the side.

Anyone know if Garbutt has signed that contract yet?

Joe Foster
3 Posted 21/03/2015 at 15:55:46
I still reckon he will play Alcarraz tomorrow
Joe Foster
4 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:12:41
We are not only making Alcaraz a scapegoat RM. I fully blame you for all our woes. And the way some of these results are going today, we need a win tomorrow.
Andy Mack
6 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:11:13
I'm not sure what to think of Martinez post Europa. We are stuck with him aren't we? Should have gone after our woeful Christmas fixtures and several times since.

Alcaraz had a nightmare of a game and should have been subbed before 30 mins, as Reidy said, "You're sitting with me son", pity we didn't have a tall, CB in our team who can head a ball when they are pumped in from distance, apart from the two we do have in Stones and Distin,

Tony Hill
7 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:21:02
I think he's right to try and take some flak off Alcaraz but in doing so he shouldn't deny the obvious: of course the man had a poor game. I don't think too many of us would have quibbled at his selection after Newcastle though, and the manager is correct to say that this was a collective failure.

Joe the results aren't bad are they? WBA have lost, Leicester are dead, Burnley are going to lose. Palace winning is the only one we would want to be different. If Sunderland lose tonight and we get 3 points tomorrow then I will consider us finally safe barring a total disaster.

Andrew Laird
8 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:25:01
So if John Stones was a "major, major risk" why was he even on the bench when Distin did not even travel?!

When will someone call this idiot's bluff and turn his nonsense back on him?

John Zapa
9 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:28:49
"Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that."

Funny that logic didn't apply to the goal keeping position after 3 clean sheets....

Christopher Dover
11 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:31:17
"Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that."

So why did RM return Howard in goal after three clean sheets by Robles?

RM by his talk seems to contradict himself so no wonder so many think he is out of his depth.

Joe Foster
12 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:33:51
Tony results seem to have changed in our favour now (wipes sweat of forehead). I don’t see the comments from RM about Alcaraz as deflecting from Alcaraz but almost as saying "Thank the lord he is taking the blame but I’d better say something about it."

It’s all up to anyone’s interpretation but that’s how I see his comment. Basically he sees it as someone else has taken a bullet meant for him.

David Hallwood
14 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:35:36
Message for Roberto: learn to shit the fuck up because it insults the intelligence of supporters some of that have been watching football for 60 years.

Alcaraz had a mare so don't say anything or something along the lines of " the lad will be disappointed by his performance"

Yes there was no pressure on the ball that allowed Kiev to ping balls in the box at will, but FFS the balls were bread and butter for any CB let alone a 'top class experienced international' and it would've been disappointing if the CB from your mates Sunday league team had 'dealt' with crosses like that.

BTW, I thought the Barca way was when you lose the ball you swarm al over the opposition to get it back again.

Joe Foster
15 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:48:07
Right I am off. In Ireland and going to par take in some local beverages and quinine.
Andy Crooks
16 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:46:24
Every word that our woeful coach spouts makes my contempt for him greater. For the sake of his mental health Martinez should find some dignity and go.
Tony Abrahams
17 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:48:27
Sounds a bit like the bit in the Godfather where Michael denounces Satin whilst is henchmen are getting ready to take out all his enemies.

James Hughes
18 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:53:50
Tony - the Godfather denounces SATIN is he a silk man ?
Tony Hill
19 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:58:35
Excellent result from Villa Park too. Relax and enjoy Joe.
Michael O'Brien
20 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:01:16
Delusional... How can you not think he had a poor defensively. He was terrible. He's slow, can't win a standard header. Watch Coleman scream at him to go to the ball. He wasn't even playing CB by the end of the game he was playing like mid/attacker. Also brings up another point: Jags is not a good captain, won't give anyone a bollicking, he's just too nice.
Tony Abrahams
21 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:03:10
I'm not sure Jamie, maybe change the L for a C and you might be right.
Kev Smith
22 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:07:24
You can't expect him to slaughter Alcaraz in the media and I doubt he's even capable of doing it behind closed doors.

We should be checking the results for Man Utd, Arsenal, Chelsea and dare I say it the RS of a weekend NOT Leicester, Palace, WBA and Burnley. That's how far backwards we've gone...........not quite the Champions League as BK was apparently promised. (Did anyone actually believe that other than BK and Rocky?)

If we lose to QPR then that has got to be it for RM, surely?

Gavin Johnson
23 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:19:14
Martinez is right in regards to the team not tracking back and doing their bit. I'm thinking of Atsu as the main offender who offers no help to a fullback. That said, Alcaraz should be able to do the basics and attack a ball from a cross. Distin's way past his best, but even he would have done this basic requirement.
Stephen Brown
24 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:25:31
Oh no! Please just say nothing at all. Abject performance by Alcaraz , we know it , he knows it and surely RM knows it !

Looking forward to the season ending and having a break from this farce of a season.

Jim Lloyd
25 Posted 21/03/2015 at 16:55:51
Well, I can agree with Martinez about the back four...up to a point. Alcaraz played well enough last Sunday to earn a contender for man of the match. The team kept a clean sheet on Sunday (some scary moments early on though. I thought we played well on Sunday after about the first 20-25 minutes.

On Sunday though, we had more cohesive set up and a midfield who were quick to move the ball out and two forwards who were getting in the face of the Newcastle defenders.

So I can see what Martinez says about our defence being worth the start on Wednesday. English International Centre Half and left full back, Irish International right full back and and Alcaraz who had palyed quite well on Sunday.

It soon became apparent though that, a our midfield was being overran and Barry in particular was slower to the ball than the oppositon and once they were past him that was that. It also became apparent early on that Alacaraz was having a very iffy start.

I felt he should have been taken off before half time and replaced with John Stones. I also think Barry should have been on the bench and Gibson start the match.

We looked frail down our left and crosses were going in with depressing regularity.

To me though, I wouldn't be singling out Alcaraz as though our defeat was solely due to him. I don't think that's true. Our goalkeeper was beaten twice with shots from outside the area. I thought his positioning for them was really poor. A couple of weeks ago, I think it was Young Boys who went ahead with a very similar goal and the press was calling it a "wonder goal". Well I don't think it was and two of the goals the other night were the same. At the time they were scored our goalie appeared to be well outside our 6 yard box. I think even I could put the ball in an empty net...if I could kick it that far! I think that Robles deserved his chance and I think Howard needs dropping and shouldn't have come right back in.

I also looked on in amazement as our captain headed a ball right in to our own danger area which led directly to another goal for Kiev. That was poor as well. So that was 3 goals at least, that I think were down mostly to our own doing.

Lukaku and Atsu, I thought kept some pressure on the opposition but were getting little support from the midfield.

So I agree that Alcaraz was not alone in having a poor game,,, but he should have been hauled off and that's where I disagree with Martinez.

Frustrating, depressing and Martinez got it wrong in my view, when we could have and should have, given Kiev a much sterner test.

Kevin Naylor
26 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:32:29
"It was important to have continuity in the back four that kept a clean sheet on Sunday and that is the reason."

Didn't stop him dropping Robles after 3 clean sheets FFS

Joe Ainsworth
27 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:26:06
Still baffled by the suggestion that Alcaraz has ever strung two decent halves together never mind two games. To my uneducated (only been watching them for 44 years) eye he strolls round like heÂ’s trying not to spill his Pina Colada. In the same way that you knew Stones was a class act minutes after clapping eyes on him for the first time, you could tell Alcaraz was a bag of shite from the outset.

BUT, itÂ’s not his fault he was selected. The blame for that lies at the brown-shoed feet of the ghost of Mike Walker. A man who will neither shut up or fuck off. Computer says no Roberto, take your right-angled couch and your two tellies back to cloud cuckoo land.

Ian Brandes
28 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:28:27
Having studied the latest utterances from our deluded blabber-mouth of a manager, I have now decided to make my life a Martinez free zone.

I routinely hit the off button when I see him on TV, same with the radio, and I no longer read the Echo sports pages.

The saddest thing about this is that my Martinez dartboard has to go too, and this has given me hours of pleasure recently.

I will donate this to his next club, which, a good source tells me, will be Prescot 'evo-stik' Cables. As a special favour, they are going to reward my donation with a quantity of their sponsor's product.

I am sure this will come in very useful for us before he departs for Hope Street at the end of this season.

Oh my God, I have just become as deluded as our great leader!

Tony Hill
29 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:39:56
John (8) and Kevin (25), you are right. He is not consistent even when, on a particular occasion, he is telling the truth. That shows a man who is not to be trusted and that is why, in the final analysis. he is wrong for us.
Will Firstbrook
30 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:38:44
Let's face it – Bobby wouldn't recognize a good defender or a good defensive game if it came up and kicked him in the gonads.

Really, him offering an opinion about any defensive topic is not worth reporting.

Paul Webb
31 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:30:12
The guy is crap. We have all seen his shocking displays. The sooner his contract runs out, the better.
Ian McDowell
32 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:54:34
How Alcaraz – whose good performances for Everton I can count on one hand – gets a game ahead of Distin, who maybe isn't the player he was a few years ago, baffles me.
Mike Childs
33 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:51:31
Ian, I've had on mute since December. 'Delusional' isn't strong enough to describe him. I think 'insane' fits better.
Len Gowing
34 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:52:51
Anyone heard that Stones didn't play because he was arseing around in the hotel the night before the game so was disciplined by being benched? If so, then that is a massive risk to take and so it proved to be.
Kevin Rowlands
35 Posted 21/03/2015 at 17:52:02
Let’s be honest, the title should be "Martinez rejects criticism of anybody or anything." No matter how shite we are, how shite we play, how low our league position is, how many cups we get knocked out of, no one is ever to blame including of course himself. He lives in fucking footballing la-la land where everything is phenomenal. Lose tomorrow and he is surely out. Please, someone, Phil, Col, anybody – tell me that will be the case!
Terry McLavey
40 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:08:04
Didn't Peter Reid say about Alcaraz something like this at half time: "I'll give you ten minutes in the second half to improve or you'll be sitting next to me!"

I'm sure with Roberto's comments he must have another match streamed into his thick stubborn head from an unknown source, as it's obviously not the one we see week-in & week-out!

You bought a Wigan dud, Roberto, grow a spine and admit it, FFS! (Or was he free? Either way, they saw us coming!)

Phil Walling
42 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:23:00
Correction Terry, he bought three Wigan duds!
Oliver Molloy
43 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:19:59
The bottom line is, if we had been playing a decent side other than Newcastle last Sunday, we would have lost the game. Newcastle were very very poor and it wasn't because Everton were brilliant!

I admire managers who stand by the team when it's not playing well, but there are times when the manager can be nothing more than honest and tell it like it is.
Martinez really is insulting the intelligence of us Everton fans and football fans in general. My Arsenal-supporting friend called me today to tell me we have a "Walter Mitty" on our hands! The manager is digging a serious big hole for himself.

Aidy Dews
44 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:14:05
He does talk shit sometimes. I've always tried to defend him at times this season, but Martinez has got it wrong!

Yes, he has a point that the whole team should defend a whole lot better, but what can some of the team do if they're getting overrun because he insisted that Barkley and Atsu stay high up the pitch with Lukaku, ready for the counter, but in turn leaving no cover for the FBs and leaving gaps in CM so we were getting run ragged all game?!

Imo, when we equalised, we should've dropped Barkley into a 3-man midfield, got on the ball and killed the game for the rest of the half and go again in the second half. But no, not in Roberto's thinking. Instead he kept us open and we got badly punished!

I couldn't believe that a manager who masterminded a one-nil win in the FA Cup final against a very talented Man City with spot on tactics, could approach a Europa League tie away from home against a Kiev side with their record at home like that!

And the bit about Stones only just recovering from a virus and not playing a game beforehand and it being a risk to put him back in his bollocks! So how come, when he came back from his ligament damage injury in the season, he pretty much brought him straight back in? He should've been in from the start, a virus doesn't all of a sudden make you unfit!

And how come when Howard came back from a calf injury, he came straight back in for an in-form Robles?

Same with Baines. Soon as he was fit, he was straight back in for Garbutt who hadn't put a foot wrong; same goes for McCarthy. Soon as he was back he was straight in for Besic, even though Barry as been the weak link in midfield. I know McCarthy should always play when fit, but it's beside the point; if someone comes in for these injured players and plays well, then they shouldn't be the ones to suffer when they're back fit, imo!

Alcaraz is a mistake waiting to happen and should never have started an important game like that ahead of Stones! And back to the point about Martinez being right about the team should've defended better as an whole, but you can't blame things on a team issue when your CD can't read or win headers and he is a total liability to the rest of 'em!

Bill Gall
45 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:24:45
Agree with his statement that the back four kept a clean sheet against Newcastle but any one watching football knew that playing against Kyiv on their own ground was going to be a lot harder than a depleted Newcastle team with their injuries and suspensions.

Just another case of our manager's disregard for other teams' strengths with his thinking of that "with my philosophy, we will score more than the opposition can".

Teddy Bertin
46 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:37:52
Sounds fair enough to me, didn't work though.
Paul Hughes
48 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:37:03
I sort of understand him starting Alcaraz after the Newcastle game but, after 25 mins, any manager worth their salt would've taken him off.
Colin Glassar
49 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:46:58
Poor showing for a CB who can't jump more than 2" off the floor. But, as I said on another thread, the entire defence was a shambles for three of their goals, not just one player.
Jay Harris
50 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:57:07
Anyone who knows anything about football (and I exclude Martinez from that group) knows that Alcaraz has problems with crosses and Tim Howard isn't far behind him.

If Martinez had done his preparation properly, he would have known Dinamo throw crosses in.

Why play two central DMs and two central AMs (Naismith and Barkley and then complain about crosses not being prevented from coming in?

It's no wonder that Baines's and Coleman's games have gone to pot. They don't know who will cover in front of them or link up with them.

How the hell Martinez got a coaching badge, I will never know.

Colin Malone
51 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:59:21
Anyone know the truth with Distin?
Ross Edwards
52 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:05:27
'I don't think defensively he had a poor game.'

For that comment alone, he should be sacked. I know he's got to protect his players but Jesus, the amount of rubbish the man comes out with is just incredible.

Finn Taylor
53 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:55:19
The type of press conferences we know see and hear... would not have happened a few years back.

I wonder if there is more to Martinez bringing in duds from Wigan with him... you'd think that, with a little more money available to him, he would look at more reliable, high-calibre targets.

The thing I find most worrying about what has happened this season is that, behind the scenes, he has taken apart the infrastructure that had so carefully been built over 10 years. Training has become febble and people are leaving because they can't work with him. And that is what we know...

Ross Edwards
54 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:07:39
"Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that."

Wait. He didn't want to disrupt a defence that kept a clean sheet in the previous game, yet earlier in the season he dropped Robles after 3 successive clean sheets – up to that point, our only clean sheets all season in the league.

He is so out of his depth it is unbelievable. He contradicts himself week after week. He's definitely lost it.

Bobby Thomas
55 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:52:38
Those asking about Howard coming back into the line-up need to consider he is a long established senior pro who will carry a lot of sway in the dressing room.

Martinez has already had a blow up with Distin and put him in the deep freeze. There have been rumours of dressing-room discontent all season and it started developing leaks for the first time in years.

It's the same with Barry. By rights both should have been dropped, or "rested", long ago. But if he does he's got three, or more, mightily pissed off senior pros in Distin, Barry and Howard kicking their heels on the bench.

You need the senior pros. It's easy saying "drop them" but it's not as easy as that sometimes. From Martinez's perspective, it may be best to just get this season out of the way and ditch them in the summer. Although, as he has given Howard & Barry 4- & 3-year deals, that may be easier said than done!!

From a footballing perspective, though, Barry just needs less football at his age, starting 25 games max. Then when he played we'd get the best of him, because he'd be fresh. Stuff like playing every minute of three games in ten days for a stocky, immobile, 33-year-old holding player is just asking for trouble and actually does the player himself zero favours.

Peter Carpenter
56 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:08:53
'You need to allow football to make the decisions.'

If there is anyone out there who knows what this means, please let me know. ٣ if you can enlighten me.

Phil Walling
57 Posted 21/03/2015 at 18:39:58
I've never played Football Manager so never try to picks teams or second guess the manager. It's his prerogative to get it wrong! But an observation might be permitted.

Over this disappointing of seasons, I've come to believe that Roberto's main objective was to fulfil his promise to BK to qualify for CL... by winning the Europa League.

I know it sounds deluded but I'm sure he prioritised that competition and was happy to 'rest' players in Premier League matches so as to have them available for Europe. Thus, his surprising selections against Newcastle was in this cause rather than brilliant foresight.

I'm told he did the same at Wigan vis a vie the FA Cup – and it's success got him the Everton job, didn't it?

Bet there won't be many changes for tomorrow although Barry is suspended and Alcaraz will probably have pulled a hammy!

Colin Malone
58 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:15:42
Sunderland getting beat, all the results going for us. You know what that means, put your house on QPR.
David Greenwood
59 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:14:53
No need to dislodge the partnership that kept two clean sheets? So why disrupt one that kept three in row? And why can't any of the echo journalists ask him that. We know you read these pages. Ask him a difficult question for once instead of picking up your wages for doing sod all.
Phil Walling
60 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:18:26
What that means, Colin, is that we are safer than ever. Thank gawd!
Colin Malone
61 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:36:37
What that means, Phil, if we lose, is we are still in the shit.
Dick Fearon
62 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:28:37
Learn from the past or be condemned to repeat our mistakes. Has Roberto learned anything from his Wigan experience? If the worst happens he will be off to ruin another innocent club while we will the ones who are condemned.

Regardless of the QPR result, his Everton contract must be terminated. A new manager would then have time to get his feet under the table in time for the next pre-season.

Brin Williams
63 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:49:54
'Regardless of the QPR result, his Everton contract must be terminated.'

Does anyone know exactly what it is going to cost us to 'terminate his contract'?

I'm fed up of hearing the same thing over and over again – but what will it cost!!

Okay somebody will probably say that it will cost more if we don't terminate – but same question: What will it cost if we do??

Chris Feeley
64 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:38:35
Martinez regarding starting Stones, "It would be a major, major risk to throw him into a game of that intensity...", so how can you justify starting Atsu? I remember being shown the SackPardew website that had a few webpages concerning Pardew's contradicting statements whilst in charge of Newcastle. After this season alone, I'm awaiting the encyclopaedia sized annual for Señor Nonsense.
Darren Hind
65 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:09:55
"We are now looking back at the game and it's very easy to say "this should have been done" but you need to allow football to make the decisions."

Saves you the job, eh, Robbie?

The suggestion that his critics are now using the benefit of hindsight, is insulting. Anyone who has seen Stones ad Alcaraz play this season knew the gormless twat had named the wrong team before a ball was kicked.


Patrick Murphy
66 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:42:41
Couldn't agree more, Dick, anybody who has managed a team at the bottom end of the table for four years would have learned from their mistakes and would set about putting them right. Roberto has to some extent tightened things up since the turn of the year but the results still wouldn't come because he;

a) Doesn't know what his best side is
b) Believes that experience is the be-all and end-all;
c) Doesn't seem to mind losing and that I think has been shown in the players' performances this season;
d) Doesn't seem to take anything on board from the press, the fans or any other quarter.

Last season it was relatively easy to manage the team as enough results went the right way often enough, but the test of any manager at any level is when things are going wrong and, in my opinion, Roberto doesn't have the necessary armoury to cope with failure. He ignores it and strongly believes that things will over time get better; that isn't good management... that's dereliction of duty.

I honestly believe if Everton FC keep this man for longer than the end of this season, it will be the most catastrophic mistake that Bill Kenwright and the rest of the board will have made in their entire time at the helm and possibly the single worst mistake the club will have made in its entire history.

A good gambler knows when to cut his losses and, as BK is known to like a flutter, I would advise him to cut those losses asap, because in the long run it will save him money and it may save his club.

John Atkins
67 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:02:52
I'm actually starting to feel sorry for the idiot.

He really is out of his depth and this comment clearly displays this.

Phil Walling
68 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:13:49
Brin: How the feck would we know ? Give BK a ring ,he'll tell ya !
Terence Tipler
69 Posted 21/03/2015 at 19:53:53
Fortunately, we only have to listen to Martinez in small doses. If were confused, and pissed off with him. Imagine having to work, and listen to him every day.
Alan Ross
70 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:03:57
The more RM opens his mouth, the more I realise he just hasn't got a clue. His distain for Everton fans is growing with each utterance.

I was a fan of his last season but his choice to stay on at the World Cup as a pundit started in me a distaste for his behavour, his tactics and his persona. I know it's time for him to resign but regretably he would prefer to be sacked for the big money payout. Honour no longer has a place in modern life and especially in football.

Phil Walling
72 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:27:07
John, believe me, I feel the same. What the players must think, God only knows.

Trouble is that with a new extended contract last summer – and 'a good Europa', only relegation will see the back of him and none of us want that.

More suffering in store, I feel. Then, I suspect, it will be the turn of Stubbs and Weir. Oh dear!

Richard Lyons
73 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:30:57
Complete tosh of course, but no manager would publicly criticise individual players. I just thought it was amazing how much space Kiev had going forward, yet whenever we were on the attack, we were crowded out. It was like they had extra players.

And that's the way it's been all too often this season. I reckon a lot of it has to do with Coleman and Baines not getting enough support from midfield.

Tony McNulty
74 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:27:09
Can anyone recollect such consistent antipathy towards an EFC manager? I know that the advent of social media means that people sometimes communicate when the blood is rushing to the head, and they may have subsequent regrets. Nonetheless, if ToffeeWeb is in any way representative of the majority of fans' opinions, then we seem to have crossed a line. And I don't think three points tomorrow will satisfy the vast majority of those who have been posting on here since the 5-goal debacle.

My own view? I can see (sort of) what he is trying to do, and if we had Messi in the side it could work a treat. But, in the situation in which we have found ourselves, I worry at the apparent stubborness (surely he doesn't really believe some of what he says after games? Does he?)

I also feel he has little clue as to how to defend. If we were six-nil up against a mixed sex team of over sixties from the House of Lords, I would still have fear and trembling in my heart every time they attacked or won a corner.

John Audsley
75 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:36:25
Roberto and all the players need a kick up the fucking arse.

Howard should be dropped as he is utterly pathetic and believes in his own mind that he is a goal keeping god.

Alcaraz and Barry just aren't up to it, I didn't see the midweek game due to a personal tragedy but by all accounts Alcaraz was inept as hell. Barry hasn't got a brain fast enough to make up for his creaking body and we got the best out of him while he was trying to secure a permanent move.

So that's the spine of the team that needs replacing.

Will it happen???

Don't dare make a bet on the first name on Martinez's team sheet next season, I bet it begins with H.

Brian Wilkinson
76 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:37:27
Only one person should be taking the flak for week after week performances and that's Roberto.

Dropping Gibson and Kone after tearing one off Newcastle is unforgiveable.

Okay, Lennon was cup tied, but had we gone with the same mindset in Kiev, just maybe we would have put them on the backfoot a bit more, taking pressure off our back four.

I have no doubts Gibson will start Sunday, dropping him next week to bring Barry back in is a cert, let's just hope for a win Sunday.

Personally, I would bring Stones and Robles in, I will not hold my breath though.

Paul Dark
77 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:52:59
More embarrassing verbal diarrhoea from Martinez. It really is getting too much.

What will it take until impotent Bill puts everyone out of their misery?

Gerard Carey
78 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:26:36
The team formation he played in Kiev was the same as in the Premier League. Against Newcastle he changed it to either rest players or injuries and it seemed he was seeing the light. The team played with a bit of pace.

We were fooled though, he still hasn't a clue. When we stay up it won't be because of Roberto, it will be in spite of him. That, and there are three or four teams worse than us. Sad!!

Phil Walling
79 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:57:26
Tonight's odds in 'the sack race' – Roberto second fav at 9/2.

QPR now 1/8 to be relegated whilst we are out to 80/1

Worry ye not!

Tom Bowers
80 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:49:45
We all seem to agree the Blues have been awful practically all season and although each of us has their own particular player or group of players to blame one cannot expect RM to openly level criticism at any of his players. Every fan has the right to free speech especially those who pay hard earned cash to watch them.

The bottom line is one that so far neither RM or BK wants to admit and that is they have gotten it all wrong. Other poor teams below them in the Premier League will keep Everton from the bottom three but that must not disguise the fact that big changes need to be made as soon as the season is over.

The honeymoon with RM of last season is forgotten and BK has to determine if he wants to gamble with RM again next season. Most of us cannot see RM doing anything differently and so the answer is obvious.

Steve Hogan
81 Posted 21/03/2015 at 20:44:26
It's now getting embarrassing each and every time our beloved one opens his mouth.

He now contradicts himself virtually every time he indulges in 'manager speak'. I bet he plays Alcatraz on Sunday just because that is how he operates.

There's a mental health charity called MIND and I wonder if they recognise any serious delusional traits when they listen to him. By the way I mean no offence to anyone who either suffers from mental health issues or anyone who knows of anyone who does, it's just that this guy needs help.

We often think of footballers as being not very intelligent and a little dim, but I really do wonder what the senior pros at Everton who have been round the block a bit, actually think of our current manager?

Baines actually got closest to the truth when he appeared as a pundit on TV a couple of weeks ago, without actually spilling the beans.

In the first few months of his tenure at the club, most people welcomed his positivity after 11 years of the ginger one, but few recognised it as 'the early stages of some sort of mental dementia'.

Maybe one day in the future, we may see him being carried off during a post match press conference by a couple of health professionals screaming, "It's phenomenal, it's phenomenal"...

Patrick Murphy
82 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:16:22
Apparently anybody who steps out of line or doesn't do as their told under the new regime faces the wrath of the manager. Just a little light relief to while away a few minutes.

Team Meetings

Ant Summers
83 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:13:45
It is a myth to think RM is a Premier League manager, and one swallow does not make a summer (i.e. one good result).
Dave Abrahams
84 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:19:15
Phil (79), Phil I hope the odds don't change tomorrow night or Monday morning.
Colin Malone
85 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:07:49
Martinez has not got the bottle to be a manager. Martinez is a coach, not a manager.
Doug Harris
86 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:01:34
Phil, it's not about us; worry you not.

God I wish. It's about us (the team) that is giving us belief.

Jason Bowen
87 Posted 21/03/2015 at 21:58:59
I never want to see either Alcaraz or Barry wear a Everton shirt again but with our incredible manager they are here for the long haul, I genuinely like Martinez but I honestly believe this man has a good chance of destroying our club this or next season! Zero confidence in him!
Gavin Johnson
88 Posted 21/03/2015 at 22:02:13
I don't go out of my way to listen to his interviews any more. He has the same stock answers that he applies to any given situation.

Chris James
89 Posted 21/03/2015 at 22:05:28
"We are now looking back at the game and it is very easy to say 'this should have been done' but you need to allow football to make the decisions."

This is the phrase that worries me most of all. I'm not surprised he's defending his players, I don't even think that's a terrible thing to do, but the statement above is ridiculous and pretty much underlines the problems many fans have with Martinez and why he has to go.

1. The time to 'look back at the game' and see 'what you should have done' was after 40-45 minutes when it was clear that Alcaraz was totally out of his depth, Barry was absolutely ineffectual and our tactical approach was getting ripped to pieces.

2. No Mr Martinez, you do NOT 'have to allow football to make the decisions'; the person making the decisions is the football manager, ie, you in this case.

Your initial poor decision in team selection, then abject failure to make any decisions at the time when they could have impacted the flow of the game (eg, before 65 minutes when we were 4-1 down and heads had started to drop) are what contributed to the ensuing 'football', not vice versa. Then again, the less said about the decisions he eventually did make the better – Osman and Kone on wasn't so bad, but taking off Naismith and Atsu rather than the redundant defensive midfielder when the only thing that could save us was 2 goals is just mindboggling.

Steve Barr
90 Posted 21/03/2015 at 22:39:49
Roberto says "Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that".

I agree 100%.

So why did he replace Robles with Tim Howard after his three clean sheets? Selective messaging again from Roberto!

Jonathan Benn
91 Posted 21/03/2015 at 22:54:59
I am all for the defence of players in the press. I get the idea of not chastising someone who you may need to come in and do a job for you at some point in the future (because you have no alternative).

I would read fuck all into these comments. This is politics and ego massage and nothing more.

I expect to see changes tomorrow inspite of these comments and expect another round of vanilla flavoured press action after the final whistle.

Team tomorrow:

Coleman, Jagielka, Stones, Baines
McCarthy, Gibson
Lennon, Barkley, Naismith


Paul Hughes
92 Posted 21/03/2015 at 23:02:18
I really hope Gibson plays well in the next 2 games meaning Roberto can't bring Barry back.
James Stewart
93 Posted 21/03/2015 at 23:52:46
Once more he has to explain his failed tactics. Out of his depth, inept and a complete incompetent. I'm counting the days to his sacking...
Paul Hughes
94 Posted 22/03/2015 at 00:05:21
Yet again the coward refuses to accept any responsibility. His selection, formation and tactics are clueless. We have had worse performances under previous mangers, but never with a squad of internationals like we have at the moment. The players as a group are as talented a group of players as I've seen for 30 years. The manager isn't.
Tony Byrne
95 Posted 22/03/2015 at 00:13:51
I have stopped listening to the deluded clown, our own eyes tell us all what we see on the park but RM sees something else.

Anyone see Soccer AM Saturday morning? Eddie Howe was interviewed, he was asked who he supported... Everton was his answer! His favourite player... Tony Cottee! That did freak me out slightly.

Would anybody have Eddie Howe? I would as he can't be any worse than this tool we have in charge. I know he is a young coach but I would prefer us having a British manager at this point in time, maybe alongside Alan Irvine/Peter Reid.

Just my opinion guys & gals.

Ant Dwyer
96 Posted 22/03/2015 at 00:20:23
I can't understand how Martinez's head works. He's saying it's not correct to drop Alcaraz after one clean sheet vs the worst team in the league, but it was OK to drop Robles after three clean sheets.... What a joke!!

For once I agree with something he has said though, it's not fair to blame Alcaraz as it's clearly Martinez's fault. Sack him asap please as I can't keep watching the shite he puts on display.

Ian Davies
97 Posted 22/03/2015 at 00:22:12
We need to be careful, if you buy lower league players you end up in the Championship. However, there are some unpolished diamonds in the lower leagues (I watch a lot of League One games) our reduced budget could take advantage of...

Whoever our manager is in the summer could do worse than look at Ritchie and Arter at Bournemouth, Flint at Bristol and Fodringham at Swindon. However, I doubt RM would consider this. I doubt humble pie will be on the menu at the next shareholders dinner.

Ian Riley
98 Posted 22/03/2015 at 00:28:37
The manager is right! How dare you all single out a player for shit defending! The player was not protected enough and that is right Mr Martinez. The team play two holding defensive midfielders every game and look at the table. Results over a season tell the full picture and my god don't they. The team took a lead to Russia and played like we were the team behind. It's never your fault is it! The manager inherited a quality bunch of players and given resources well above the previous manager and look at us.

The manager, players and fans are unhappy. A win tomorrow will see us nine points clear from the bottom three. Once we are safe officially, change must come. If a manager cannot take responsibility and blames everyone else, well you lose all respect. It's time for change.

Sean Kelly
99 Posted 22/03/2015 at 01:31:46
MartinezÂ’s credibility is shot to pieces. When Robles kept clean sheets. When Howard was out he was dropped like a hot potato as soon as the flapper was fit. When Stones was fit he kept the useless Alcaraz in. HeÂ’s a spoofer and we should let him know our feelings today. Make him hear and feel our anger.
Nicholas Ryan
100 Posted 22/03/2015 at 02:45:38
Dear Roberto, please obtain immediate treatment, for the personality disorder, which you so clearly have.
Susong Hermawan
101 Posted 22/03/2015 at 03:11:52
Wow... This Roberto, what kind of thing are you man? haha..
Peter Barry
102 Posted 22/03/2015 at 04:52:25
So what are Martinez's problems well Team Selection, Tactics, Substitute usage, and Motivational ability to mention just a few.
Jimmi James
103 Posted 22/03/2015 at 05:52:26
Kev Smith #22, absolutly right lad should be checking results at the top end and worrying.
Brian Porter
104 Posted 22/03/2015 at 05:55:24
I definitely think it's time the real fans let Martinez know how we feel, either vocally, or by staying away until he's gone. Of course, loyalty to our club will prevent most of us doing the latter, do let's let the joker know what we think of him. Maybe everyone can carry large pictures of The Joker from the batman movies, it certainly would be appropriate. This man I systematically destroying our club while keeping a permanent delusional smile plastered on his face. Good God, Martinez, even the ITV4 commentator said he couldn't work out where Alcaraz was supposed to be playing! As others have said, his tactical naiveté and baffling ream selections only serve to damn him by his own actions, and the Robles /Howard issue highlights his duplicity with regards to the Alacaraz/Stones case. He obviously cannot be trusted as he says one thing one week and goes ahead and contradicts himself within days or weeks and who suffers as a result? Everton F C. That's who! I know some people feel changing managers mid-season doesn't work, but look at Palace, West Brom and to a lesser extent, Aston Villa. Relegation fodder before Christmas, but look at Palace and West Brom now. No way should we be looking up the table at teams like them, with the players we have at our disposal. I can honestly see Martinez taking us even lower than the Championship if he is allowed to continue his destructive reign. Would BK like our future 'local' derbies to be against Fleetwood Town or Blackpool? Scary eh? But possible, unless the lunatic is removed as soon as possible. Think Titanic/unsinkable/icegerg, Mr Kenwright, before we also sink without trace. No club is too big to go down, and you must act before it's too late.
Dan Nulty
105 Posted 22/03/2015 at 07:06:47
As a coach myself, you can't publicly criticise players, you could completely belittle and destroy someone's confidence and if injuries happen you may well need to rely on them. Would they play for you again giving their all if you've embarrassed them publicly?

The big question is whether Martinez truly believes what he says. The answer will be provided today. If he plays alcaraz then for me Roberto has shown that he is too stubborn to ever be a good manager. He will take us down eventually if that is the case.

Brian Porter
106 Posted 22/03/2015 at 07:04:31
Oh, no! You know things are bad when your wife comes home from seeing her friends, who all know I'm a rampant Evertonian, with a joke about the club. This is from my wife's 'friend'. Maybe one day we can apply it to another club, but this is how it was told to her.
A dead body is discovered in a park by a young police constable. The man is dressed in a pair of frilly pink knickers, pink tights and suspender belt, pink high fell and an Everton shirt. He radios in to base and when the detectives arrive they ask him if he's touched anything. "I just removed his Everton shirt sir" he tells the detective sergeant. "Why the hell did you do that? the sergeant asks him. "To save him from embarrassment sarge," he replies. Thanks to Roberto Martinez we have now become the subject of bloody housewives jokes!
Tony Cheek
111 Posted 22/03/2015 at 10:50:56
"Antolin and Phil had created a very strong partnership in the previous two games and after keeping a clean sheet against Newcastle there is no need to dislodge that."

Tell me again, Roberto, then why did Howard get his place back?

Andrew Cunningham
112 Posted 22/03/2015 at 12:37:03
Beat me to the punch Tony @ 111.
Pete Owen
113 Posted 22/03/2015 at 14:41:14
Come on guys, Martinez was right to play Alcaraz. Stones has not played in weeks, you really would have thrown him in at the deep end? That's just asking for trouble. Playing Alcaraz was the lesser of two evils and I'm pretty sure had we won that game or even kept a clean sheet nobody here would have mentioned him.
Colin Grierson
114 Posted 22/03/2015 at 15:02:05
The only way you can interpret 'allow football to make the decisions' nonsense is that form of players over time dictates selection. Unfortunately it seems Martinez makes the decisions as 'football' would have more sense than to play a player of Alcaraz's ilk!
Terry McLavey
115 Posted 22/03/2015 at 16:23:48
Phil #42 You're right! Laughed out loud, but it's not funny really is it.
Michael Kenrick
116 Posted 22/03/2015 at 18:41:47
Pete Owen (#113),

John Stones was really "thrown in at the deep end" this afternoon at Loftus Road... and was absolutely brilliant at times.

"Throw him in at the deep end"??? He's a professional footballer, a brilliant youngster, a proven exceptional defender, with the prospect of a fantastic career... playing football is his very essence. "Thrown him in at the deep end"??? ... Really? Maybe he was still recovering from a virus in Kiev... but then why was he on the bench?

And now for a gem from the bizarre world of the Parallel Universe: "had we won that game, or even kept a clean sheet, nobody here would have mentioned him"!!!!

Here's the whole point, though, Pete. We didn't win. We lost 5-2, squandering the lead from the first leg. Most who watched the real game in this Universe saw that Alcaraz was simply atrocious, and of course they mentioned it... in abundance. This is what we call the Real World. End of.

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