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Howard aiming to return to international scene in September

06/06/2015  Comments (42)  jump
Tim Howard says he still intends to return to the USA fold in the autumn to fight for his place in his country's World Cup qualification campaign.

The 36 year-old rose to national fame in America with his exploits at the last World Cup in Brazil but took a year off from international football this season.

Though he says the hiatus was a good decision that allowed him to spend more time with his children, he has no plans to retire from the US Men's National Team in the near future.

After I spoke with Jurgen, I just decided to take this year off and then come back into the fold if I was fit, healthy and playing next September," he told evertonfc.com.

I'll integrate myself back into the team if they will still have me and go from there and see what happens.

I wanted more time with my family as I wanted more time out with my children and, to be honest, it's been a great decision.

Howard has been deputised by Aston Villa's Brad Guzan over the past nine months.  


Reader Comments (42)

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Peter Fitzpatrick
1 Posted 06/06/2015 at 07:45:53
Like he wasnÂ’t bad enough when we were his only focus, last season.
Terence Tipler
2 Posted 06/06/2015 at 08:24:35
Shop window, for move to MLS next year.
Harold Matthews
3 Posted 06/06/2015 at 08:23:45
Wish we had a great goalie who commanded the area. Surely itÂ’s the number one priority.
Dave Abrahams
4 Posted 06/06/2015 at 08:55:35
Terence(2)I hope you are right, but it would be better if he went this year,preferably I this close season.
Anthony Hawkins
5 Posted 06/06/2015 at 08:59:57
Good move for Howard but bad move for Everton
Bobby Thomas
6 Posted 06/06/2015 at 09:16:28
In my opinion Howard came back from the World Cup mentally & physically drained. This combined with the heavy early season programme, the Palace errors came on the back of Europa games for example, meant he was very poor.

HeÂ’s still a more than decent age for a keeper & can recover. I would welcome an open competition for the number 1 spot with Robles.

More than likely though Howard will start the season and we now know theres a valid alternative. If Howard begins to show anything approaching some of the woeful form of especially early this season then he should be dropped pronto. Martinez has backed him to the hilt.

Theres only a certain amount of cash & we have more pressing requirements than a new keeper.

On the internation decision, its not positive news as far as we are concerned.

John Crawley
8 Posted 06/06/2015 at 10:57:38
Harold couldnÂ’t agree more. Cloughie had it right build a strong spine first, then add to that. We are desperately short of a commanding goalie and centre half. McCarthy can do a job in central midfield as can Lukaku up top. Mourinho did the same when he came back to Chelsea.
Laurie Hartley
9 Posted 06/06/2015 at 11:30:04
Harold @ 3 - another Nigel Martyn?

During a bout of anger that I was going through last season I started writing job descriptions for each position. I never posted it but this is what I wrote for a goalie😬

1. Commanding the 6 yard box, all elbows and knees, able and willing to clatter any body having the effrontery of trying to head the ball into "his goal" from crosses and corners.
2. Coming off his line at the right time to pluck the ball from the feet of anyone who has got passed his back four.
3. Stopping shots.

Brian Hill
10 Posted 06/06/2015 at 13:15:53
Bobby Thomas, why would Howard be either mentally or physically drained by the World Cup?
Jamie Crowley
11 Posted 06/06/2015 at 13:32:38
Brian -

He was carrying the mantle for footy in the USA. The manÂ’s entire being was focused on his American endeavor to take his team, and subsequently the sport in the USA, to heights itÂ’s never seen.

I agree with Bobby. Tim was mentally and physically drained.

Colin Williams
12 Posted 06/06/2015 at 14:06:27
Please stop making excuses for this guy.... Our weakest link!! DoesnÂ’t deserve his jersey. His best days are long gone... even those days were very average!

You can buy whoever you want but without a quality goalkeeper (with the basic core skills) in the Premier League, you wonÂ’t be competitive with the big boys... Get rid before we suffer again from his antics!!!!

Harold Matthews
13 Posted 06/06/2015 at 16:10:44
Laurie. Even Nigel sometimes had glue on his feet.
Tom R Owen
14 Posted 06/06/2015 at 16:31:50
Jamie & Bobby,

HeÂ’s only playing football! HeÂ’s supposed to be professional and getting more in a week than most who write on TW earn in a year! ItÂ’s hardly brain surgery.
Drained – bollocks he’s just shite but like Mirallas believes his own publicity.
By the way. What did Robles do wrong when given a chance?

Pa Carty
15 Posted 06/06/2015 at 16:41:40
Tim has had a decent Everton career, but the last two seasons have been poor by his standards. It’s time to move on and look to the future.
Bobby Thomas
17 Posted 06/06/2015 at 22:16:06
Brian & Tom,

You are clearly a deep thinker about things, Tom, so I know you will take this on board.

Tom, saying heÂ’s only playing football & not doing brain surgery is quite frankly a load of bollocks. Total, mind numbingly brain dead, Neanderthal bollocks. You have no concept of elite sport & the mental, physical & emotional requirements. And keeping is very much about the mental as well as the physical. I donÂ’t believe you will accept a word of what I say, however, if you can drag your knuckles off the floor to have a read...

Last season, Howard was generally only playing once a week. Train all week, peak for a weekend. No problem. Now Howard would have no reason to be mentally or physically drained by that. No one would. The schedule was fine.

However, following the season, the World Cup happened, so you go to a tournament after playing and training for over 9 months & experience the stresses & strains of tournament football. Widely acknowledged by anyone in football as mentally & physically draining. So he comes back & thereÂ’s no real break, the pre-season is disrupted & there was importantly no mental break to step away & recharge & do other things other than train & play. A break from their job, which is what it is.

And that job involves playing in one of the best leagues in Europe & to peak X times a season every game.

This is where the main problem kicked in for me. Our schedule at the start of this season which was very heavy especially in certain periods.

Her is a link to our fixtures:

http://www.Evertonfc.com/fixtures

Howard was playing an amount of football he had rarely, if ever, played before on the back of a full season and the World Cup. LetÂ’s take the Crystal Palace game as an example. He was shite & made two decisions that cost us the points. Look at the schedule & look how many times he was asked to peak in that period of time. I donÂ’t think itÂ’s really do-able. IÂ’m saying he was burnt out. During this I couldnÂ’t believe Martinez played him in the League Cup.

On the day of the Palace game this interview with Howard was in the Telegraph:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/Everton/11110827/Everton-v-Crystal-Palace-I-want-at-least-one-trophy-at-Goodison-before-I-retire-says-goalkeeper-Tim-Howard.html

The relevant section is the one about the post Wolfsburg & pre Palace prearation. I donÂ’t think itÂ’s coincidence he made two very poor decisions in the Palace game.

What IÂ’m saying is there were reasons for the poor form. A fresh footballer, mentally & physically fresh, is better than one ground down by routine, fatigued & not sharp. Remember Messi in this years World Cup? DidnÂ’t do much and played at walking pace. Too much football. Why do young players get burnt out? Owen was destroyed at 24 by constant 50/60-game seasons & tournament footy.

Only playing football, though, eh?

When Schmeichel was at Man Utd he had a bad phase and people started questioning him, had he been there too long etc. Ferguson sent him on a mid season break for 2 weeks & said get away, donÂ’t even think about football, take a break, re-charge. He came back boss, problem solved.

Howard was extremely poor until he was injured. In fact, I think the injury did him a favour & took him out of the firing line when he badly needed to step away from it. The previous season was one of his best. I believe at 35 he can come again as he should still be at his peak. Professional pride should see him work his bollocks off this pre-season, he has been widely & rightly battered. Plus he has a manager to re-pay who has backed him all the way. The decision he has made regarding international football is, for me, a mistake.

Martinez has said he is not getting another keeper so we may as well forget it. It will most likely be Howard that starts the season. Any repeat trend of this seasonÂ’s errors and he needs to be dropped.

David Hallwood
18 Posted 06/06/2015 at 22:50:29
I think it’s an excellent idea; an even better one would be to relocate to the States, I hear Florida’s nice, or even Texas – in fact, anywhere the fuck out of the UK.

Bobby Thomas (#17), stated that Howard cost us the points v Palace – and the rest; I reckon he cost us up to 15 points, in fact, in the 1st half of the season, the difference between us and Man Utd was the respective goalies.

Tim Howard has always been a great shot stopper, but the negative points of not good at crosses, doesnÂ’t command his area, and serious lapses of concentration outweigh any positives.

Andy Crooks
19 Posted 06/06/2015 at 23:01:46
Laurie (#9), for quite a number of reasons that is cracking post.
Steve Sweeney
20 Posted 06/06/2015 at 23:29:50
Bobby (#17),

Tom, saying heÂ’s only playing football & not doing brain surgery is quite frankly a load of bollocks. Total, mind numbingly brain dead, neanderthal bollocks. You have no concept of elite sport & the mental, physical & emotionAL requirements. And keeping is very much about the mental as well as the physical. I donÂ’t believe you will accept a word of what I say, however if you can drag your knuckles off the floor to have a read.....

IMHO, what a load of Bollocks. Howard has been shit for years, he doesnÂ’t command the box, makes bad decisions and has a really terrible beard. A highly paid Sportsman on over 㿲k a week should not be making mistakes in games v the likes of Crystal Palace. The quicker he fucks off to the American League the better.

Ant Dwyer
21 Posted 06/06/2015 at 23:45:38
IÂ’d fuck Howard off now, brilliant service to the club but after his worst season ever he has to go, especially now heÂ’s going back to international duty.
Bobby Thomas
22 Posted 06/06/2015 at 23:21:41
Everyone was ready to hate Cleverley but a couple of late season goals & talk of some decent performances have seen the hate campaign muted & replaced with a more pleasant version of a shrug of the shoulders.

It was in vogue to hate Cleverley. ItÂ’s in vogue to hate Howard.

I will back him to return to the form which was plenty good enough season before this one.

Laurie Hartley
24 Posted 06/06/2015 at 23:46:46
Harold – fair comment but he was a smashing goalie – according to Moyes "his greatest ever signing".

Andy,

Thank you. I am currently recovering from a very stressful season as an Evertonian. Surprisingly, after such a short time, the anger has subsided and what is even more remarkable I have started having Corinthian dreams again.

ItÂ’s the hope that keeps you alive.

Up the Blues.

Steve Sweeney
25 Posted 07/06/2015 at 00:10:36
Bobby #23

LetÂ’s wait and see. In my opinion, he is not as good as he thinks he is. He costs us points and, with a more commanding keeper, our central defenders would be more confident.

Nicholas Ryan
26 Posted 07/06/2015 at 00:15:57
When I heard that Tom Cleverley had signed for a grand, but slightly faded Premier League club, with a top American keeper, I naturally assumed he had signed for Aston Villa!
John Daley
27 Posted 07/06/2015 at 00:58:53
"Wish we had a great goalie who commanded the area. Surely itÂ’s the number one priority."

Totally agree, Harold. At least, I agree it would be if it were up to me.

Howard, even on his best days (and he has had some good days, donÂ’t get me wrong), has never acted decisively enough during times of danger. For a keeper with his experience to be seemingly struck by indecision so often, suggests a fundamental flaw in his make up. His one saving grace has always been his shot stopping ability, but even that seemed to desert him for large parts of last season.

Unfortunately, I canÂ’t see Martinez searching for a ready made replacement this summer. Not with the way he was so ready to back Howard to the hilt during his prolonged period of bad form, and the fact heÂ’ll probably have less transfer funds available than it would take to address even half the areas in which the squad is seemingly lacking.

Harold Matthews
28 Posted 07/06/2015 at 01:33:35
So true John. Dick Advokaat says he wants quality not quantity yet we seem to be searching for players on the cheap. The Wolves goalie had his heart set on coming here but we wouldnÂ’t match the financial deal of a club lower down the League. SomethingÂ’s not quite right.
Phil Sammon
29 Posted 07/06/2015 at 01:25:37
Howard has been a good signing for us on the whole, but he has always had fundamental flaws to his game. His positioning is poor, his decision making and ability to collect crosses is shocking and his distribution is also sorely lacking in quality and variety.

He has, however, always been Â’adequateÂ’ and the best option weÂ’ve had. ThatÂ’s what was so disappointing about the Robles debacle this season. The lad commanded his area so much better than Howard, organised his defence and kept clean sheets. Surely this is what every manager dreams of?! An injury to a faltering, ageing senior pro opens the door for a younger replacement who grabs the opportunity with both hands and makes the position his own. And what a message to send to other senior players at the club who were also not performing to the best of their ability i.e. Barry. As a manager youÂ’ve unearthed a gem and set a precedent without having to lift a finger. How on earth do you fuck-up such a perfect scenario?!

I think the final nail in HowardÂ’s coffin, for me personally, has been his statements to the press this season. His cocky demeanour, his dismissive attitude towards the very real concerns of relegation and his complete refusal to accept his own and EvertonÂ’s failings throughout the course of the year. Much like many of the statements coming from Martinez, listening to Howard youÂ’d think weÂ’d had a good season and that the fans are out of line to even question it.

Dave Abrahams
31 Posted 07/06/2015 at 08:54:21
Not going off topic, I renewed my season ticket because, like others have said, I couldnÂ’t see myself without watching Everton, but the point in the season when Martinez completely lost me was when he dropped Robles for Howard there was just no logical reason for this.

We all have our opinions and mine is that Howard is a less than average goalkeeper and all the reasons why this is so have been repeatedly shown in the number of cock-ups he has made over the years.

John Paul McGurk
32 Posted 07/06/2015 at 10:39:10
TH was a good signing but it would be best for all parties if he went to the MLS
Marshall Duvall
33 Posted 07/06/2015 at 13:03:01
Martinez has said that Everton will not be recruiting a new goalkeeper. So, both to reduce the load on Howard and to bring along Robles, how about Howard plays the EPL games and Robles plays all the cup games?
Tom R Owen
34 Posted 07/06/2015 at 13:05:02
Bobby #17 & #23
Sorry for the late reply. Too busy dragging my knuckles around having a life - you should try it sometime!

The mental and physical fatigue obviously effected Neuer, Courtois and even Joe Hart all having really poor seasons after the World Cup. In concluding I for one totally agree with Phil (#29) and his comments on Howard.

Now I shall go back to my cave and carry on painting murals on the wall.

Bobby Thomas
35 Posted 07/06/2015 at 13:17:49
Tom #34

In your world, Hart wouldnÂ’t have had an opportunity to go to the World Cup. He wouldnÂ’t have been playing for Man City.

He is only a footballer, not a brain surgeon. No doubt he would have been written off as "shite", his wage thrown at him and totally written off.

(By the way, surgeons, they donÂ’t move around too much......why would they get tired? Possibly the mental/stress aspects? Please feel free to expand on the relevance of a brain surgeon to a goal keepers form.)

Remember that really shit phase Hart had for City when he was making mistakes all over the place and was ultimately dropped? Head battered, playing nowhere near his ability?

He then came back to produce the form he did, resulting in the very good campaign he has had, then going to the World Cup & now reaching the point where he has re-established himself.

In other words......EXACTLY what I've been talking about?

Paul Tran
36 Posted 07/06/2015 at 13:47:13
Interesting thread, this. Two issues, here. First is that HowardÂ’s a great shot-stopper, but doesnÂ’t command his area, makes poor decisions and often has his feet off the ground when you expect him to take off. We need a better keeper.

The other issue is burnout. I think thereÂ’s something in this. I remember in 1986, our World Cup stars spoke of burnout and I remember us starting that season slowly, before a late surge to the title.

It’s more mental than physical burnout. I got the sense towards the end of Martinez’s first season that the players were shot – perhaps the effects of concentrating on keeping and passing the ball, coupled with a bit of a choke?

I’m not justifying poor performance, I think its an issue, regardless of anyone’s views on pampered footballers. It’s certainly something we should look at – maybe Martinez’s judgement on mental issues is as suspect as his judgement of physical frailties?

Phil Walling
37 Posted 07/06/2015 at 14:09:14
I have a feeling that Tim may start picking up injuries next season and this will give Robles another chance to Â’get the glovesÂ’ permanently. But is he really good enough? I have me doubts!
Mike Childs
38 Posted 07/06/2015 at 19:11:42
Dave A. #31 absolutely my feelings about TH. I pray he isnÂ’t with us next year.
Mike Childs
39 Posted 07/06/2015 at 19:47:31
Interesting Phil, I have the same thoughts that players need to pick up injuries to be replaced. Where we differ is that I think Robles is up to the task.
Kev Thomas
40 Posted 07/06/2015 at 22:07:12
Right okay, IÂ’m going to bite.

Bobby T, Tim mHoward is a useless... oh I get what you are doing: stimulating debate about a Â’keeper that was past his best when we bought him and is unlikely to improve.

Good one.

Jim Bennings
41 Posted 08/06/2015 at 11:59:08
ThereÂ’s another slightly more than annoying trait that I canÂ’t stand with Howard, hasnÂ’t been mentioned here I donÂ’t think.

The way he so often ends up behind the goal line before the ball has even crossed it!!!

He often reminds me of a house spider or a bee in a bottle, all over the place with erratic arms and legs behavior but no real coordination of where in the goal he actually is.

I have never to this day either gotten out of my head that on LampardÂ’s winning goal in the 2009 Cup Final, he was at fault with a very weak wrist to a relatively average shot.

Bobby Thomas
42 Posted 08/06/2015 at 18:53:00
Kev (#40)

Wrong, I'm afraid. I just disagree, for the reasons above.

It's called having a view.

But if it makes you feel better, youÂ’re absolutely right.

Well done.

Jim Hardin
43 Posted 08/06/2015 at 19:05:47
Love the fact that the people on here can count the points TH "cost" Everton with accuracy. Incredible. Where are the stats for the other players? GKs donÂ’t win games, they save them. Yet no one counts the points he saved us, or would have saved us but for the mistakes by other players such as own goals and unmarked players and missed shots. Oh by the way, where do you Howard critics give him the three points he won versus Southampton?

The errors by Stones and Jags and ColemanÂ’s penalty cost Howard clean sheets and Everton how many points? Oh yeah, never mind it is HowardÂ’s fault that we canÂ’t defend and we canÂ’t cross or score. One poster even went so far as to opine Howard was responsible for not saving the PK Coleman gave up.

TH was better in most key stats in 2014-15 than Lloris, Hart, and De Gea and Cech (per Squawka.com) yet he is crap. How is that possible?

The complaints about Howard doesnÂ’t ever do this, or does that, completely ignore that he is not going to do certain things because he did not and does not play that style. He will not come for most crosses to the 6 or beyond, because he has defenders to deal with them (had a competent one in Distin for 5+ years who didnÂ’t seem too nervous in front of him) and his area is nearer the goal line.

His style is shot-stopper, first and foremost... and then the rest: if it wonÂ’t put the team in jeopardy if he doesnÂ’t get there. That is why he is so good at one v one saves. His positioning and technique cause shots to go wide that donÂ’t count as saves but should.

As for Robles, he plays a different style and if he were good enough he would be in there. Simple. Besic stats-wise was not better than Barry, hence he did not play in place of him. RoblesÂ’s errors could have cost Everton 6 points. Robles got lucky versus Liverpool when he came out twice and got caught in no-man's land against Sterling and was saved by SterlingÂ’s selfishness in passing up an open teammate to attempt to shoot from an impossible angle (ball found side netting not RoblesÂ’ hands).

Robles was saved from a disastrous choice coming out again off the goal-line and getting beaten badly in the Crystal Palace game when Jags cleared the ball that was 95% over the line. Funny you lot donÂ’t recall those moments or how uncertain Robles looks in one-v-one situations. Robles may come good in time but I doubt it.

Howard is welcome back to international play. I do not foresee a downside to this. Guzan is a far superior competitor to train against than Robles. I do agree that Robles should get League Cup and FA Cup competitions to see if he is the Robles of Wigan or the Robles of legend created in the minds and fingers of posters on here. I must say that, going by his history, the former is more likely.

John Daley
44 Posted 08/06/2015 at 20:37:21
"The complaints about Howard doesn't ever do this or do that completely ignore that he is not going to do certain things because he did not and does not play that style."

How can such complaints stand accused of Â’ignoringÂ’ HowardÂ’s particular playing style? Surely, any complaints are fundamentally based around the very fact he "did not and does not" do certain things, rather than being ignorant of it?

Phil Gardner
45 Posted 10/06/2015 at 09:49:26
Phil @29 Top post.

Howard has stunk GP out this season. Â’Emotionally, mentally drained?Â’ Kiss my fat one.

’Great service...blah blah blah...’ ’Great service to Everton’ is bestowed on the people at the club who work for free or minimum wage for the love of the club – not a highly remunerated player who performed badly last season and who, at his age, should be hanging up his international boots and dedicating himself to a club he is fortunate to be at.

IÂ’m sick of watching his arse scrambling and thrashing about in the net where the ball has already been or five fuckin' seconds due to his lack of assertiveness and ability... followed by him leaping to his feet and blaming every other fucker. If that was Naismith etc, his supporters on here would be calling for his head.

WhatÂ’s so different about Mr USA.....? A fuckin big ego and stuttering gob, that's what. CanÂ’t be doing with the bloke and IÂ’m sick of shitting my kecks everytime heÂ’s called upon for even the simplest of back passes (Sunderland away anyone?).

Andrew Ellams
46 Posted 10/06/2015 at 10:25:41
Jim @ 43, my issue is that most of the things that Howard neglects are part of elementary goalkeeping school, Day 1. Any goalkeeper that cannot command his area should not be playing at the level that he is.

In fact, he is to goalkeeping what Victor Anichebe was to centre-forward play


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