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Brexit, what will happen now?

As a Brit living in Australia, I have watched the events of the last 24 hours with interest. My opinion on whether this will be a good or bad thing for the UK is irrelevant, but I got to thinking about what the impact would be on English football and, more importantly, Everton.

Firstly, Brexit has no influence on membership of Uefa, so Europa league, Champions League and the Euros stay as is, with English clubs and the international teams remaining and participating in those competitions.

Secondly, movement of players to and from Europe will largely remain unchanged, at the first team level. Overseas players that want to move to an English club, will still be able to, as long as they meet the same criteria that non-European players have to meet, currently.

What will change is the younger European players, playing in the Premier League. Maybe we won't see the likes of Deulofeu, Robles, etc. Maybe we won't see Premier League clubs taking short cuts in development by buying up the young European talent, but this is not a bad thing. It will mean that English teams will have to develop local talent, and take it seriously. The likes of Dowell, Davies, Pennington and Kenny, will have more opportunities to stake a claim for a first team place. It might take a few years, but it could see a surge of local youngsters coming through the ranks.

Will it result in a reduction of the over-inflated wages that players get these days? Probably not. Will it diminish the appeal of the Premier League in terms of TV? Probably not, as there will still be the marquee players playing in the league. Will it mean Everton have an advantage? I think yes. We already have a well developed academy, so we have a jump on our competition, but I also think it will have a beneficial impact on the English (and Welsh, Irish and Scottish) national teams, because there will be a lot more local talent playing at the highest level.

It also means that the FA could instigate a cap on overseas players again, which will speed up this change.

So, my view is Brexit will be good for Everton, and also the home nation teams.

Andy Osborne     Posted 24/06/2016 at 13:21:13

Everton May Have to Sell John Stones

Prior to the 2013-14 Premier League season, the Short Term Cost Control (STCC) rules were agreed upon for the next three years, and then renewed in 2016 with the purpose of stopping salaries increasing in line with the new broadcasting revenues. The STCC rules state that, “Clubs cannot increase their player wage bills by more than £7m compared to the previous year unless they can demonstrate that any excess is due to individual club revenue sources.”

This means that Everton cannot go and buy £100m worth of players and renew the contracts of many of their young stars because the wages would rise by far more than the £7m growth that is permitted. Even though Everton now has the funds necessary through the takeover to buy expensive players, they may not be allowed to. Unfortunately, Everton cannot do what Manchester City did in 2008 after they were taken over by Sheikh Mansour with the massive £32.5m signing of Robinho from Real Madrid because it would not follow the STCC rules.

Albert Perkins     Posted 24/06/2016 at 01:53:21

Bobby's last season. A blessing in disguise?

This is NOT an article about Roberto Martinez... but possibly an argument to offer him thanks.

As I was sitting in London's outer orbital car park – known to many as 'The M25' — killing my time by catching up on ToffeeWeb, as one does, and taking in the view (I think it was an R8 in front and Norbert Dentressangle alongside, open countryside to my right), and with an aimlessly wandering mind, centred on football in general and and things Everton in particular, I got to thinking...

Off the back of a pretty lacklustre season which, with a slightly more favourable rub of the green over about 40 weeks, might have looked a fair bit less of a debacle, but from which thankfully we survived, we find that our top players' stock has dropped somewhat leading to a noticeable (so far) lack of clamouring for them from other top clubs.

Allied with the arrival of Farhad Moshiri and his obvious influence around the place — his appointment of Ronald Koeman as manager and Sasha Ryazantsev to the board, comments about plans, projects, stadium, signings and so on – the excitement around the place is nigh on tangible.

We have a thoroughly classy core squad of players — some with immense potential with the right mentoring which is going to be further strengthened with the possible arrival of the likes Sneijder (a good move IMO) and/or others, but which could been dismantled (and would have been if Martinez had remained).

If any of Lukaku, John Stones, Barkley, Coleman, Deulofeu and Funes Mori (this is not an exhaustive list), all whom are very definite potential targets for the big-shot clubs to move on, they will clearly not be easy to replace. Had their stock been higher off the back of a stronger season, there would have been a free-for-all for their signatures, particularly under Roberto Martinez.

However, and this is where my thinking led, has last season's difficulties resulted in a situation whereby it will be easier for the club to persuade these guys to stay (assuming Koeman has a plan for them, of course)?

He has probably (hopefully) done us a massive favour, working himself out of a job, paving the way for Koeman and sparking the positive vibe around the club right now.

I said on another thread that any player wanting out now might look back with some pretty major regret. Greener grass and all that, and I for one, cannot wait for the new season to start and also see what the close season (is it still called that?) brings.

So... thank you, Roberto Martinez, for engineering an optimism (a GENUINE optimism) about Everton that I have not felt for some time.

Kim Vivian     Posted 23/06/2016 at 20:04:36

Lukaku: Difficult to replace

With the appointment of Ronald Koeman and the investment of billionaire Farhad Moshiri, this is a very exciting time for the Everton faithful. I'm sure Koeman is looking forward to assessing the players he has at his disposal and seeing where he needs to improve the squad.

One key issue he will want resolving is the future of our prolific goalscorer Romelu Lukaku. Prolific strikers are difficult to come by; we only have to look at our own history in the Premier League era to see how hard it is to secure a striker that finds the back of the net as frequently as Romelu does. Last season, he broke Kanchelskis's record of 16 Premier League goals for Everton by scoring 18 goals. In truth, he should've scored more but there appeared to be a rapid decline in his attitude on the pitch, which resulted in a real barren spell in front of goal.

Even Yakubu (as good as he was) only managed 15 Premier League goals (22 in all competitions) in his best ever season with us. So, if the inevitable happens, and Lukaku gets his wish of playing in the Champions League next season, which striker out there is capable of replacing him? I have found it hard to think of many players that could fill the void of Lukaku's goals; the only (realistic) player I can think of, currently plying his trade in the Premier League and who is worthy of replacing Romelu, is Wilfried Bony.

He had a prolific goal-scoring record at Swansea – a record that is every bit as impressive as Lukaku's... and he does hold the ball up better than the big Belgian. But, he is older at 27 years old and he does play in the dreaded African Cup of Nations, which means losing him for a portion of the season.

Anyway, I was struggling to think of worthy replacements, so I thought I'd look at the top goal-scoring charts of the top leagues across Europe to refresh my own memory about certain players and see if I could identify any gems:

La Liga:

Luis Suarez - 40 goals
Cristiano Ronaldo - 35 goals
Lional Messi - 26 goals
Karim Benzema - 24 goals
Neymar - 24 goals
Antoine Griezmann - 22 goals
Aritz Aduriz - 20 goals
Gareth Bale - 19 goals
Ruben Castro - 19 goals
Borga Gonzalez - 18 goals
Lucas - 17 goals

Italian Serie A:

Gonzalo Higuain - 36 goals
Paulo Dybala - 19 goals
Carlos Bacca - 18 goals
Mauro Icardi -16 goals
Leonardo Pavoletti - 14 goals
Mohamed Salah - 14 goals

German Bundesliga:

Robert Lewandowski - 30 goals
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - 25 goals
Thomas Muller - 20 goals
Chicharito - 17 goals
Antony Modeste - 15 goals
Sandro Wagner - 14 goals
Claudio Pizarro - 14 goals
Soloman Kalou - 14 goals

French Ligue 1:

Ibrahimovic - 38 goals
Lacazette - 21 goals
Cavani - 19 goals
Batshuayi - 17 goals
Ben Yedder - 17 goals
Ben Arfa - 17 goals
Germain - 14 goals

Dutch Eredivisie:

Vincent Janssen - 27 goals
Luuk de Jong - 26 goals
Arkadiusz Milik - 21 goals
Dirk Kuyt - 19 goals
Sebastien Haller

Portugal Primeira Liga:

Jonas - 32 goals
Islam Slimani - 27 goals
Konstantinos Mitroglou - 20 goals
Leo Bonatini - 17 goals
Rafael Martins - 16 goals
Bruno Moreira - 14 goals

The stats above are only the goals scored in their league campaigns and do not include goals scored in cup competitions.

There's not many realistic worthy replacements on that list; my personal choices would be Lacazette, Janssen or Icardi. I only really watch the Spanish, German and Italian leagues when watching foreign football so I'm only going by what I read about Lacazette and Janssen.

I would be interested in anyone else's views and knowledge of players they think would be a good replacement for Lukaku. ToffeeWeb has contributors from all around the globe, with knowledge from various different leagues. Perhaps someone knows about another hidden gem like Niasse in the Russian league?

One thing is for sure, though: Lukaku will be very difficult to replace.

Mark Frere     Posted 19/06/2016 at 17:39:25

Getting rid?

New coach, new dawn, new players. It's all good. There is plenty of speculation about who we will buy. I enjoy it though I accept it is pointless. What I don't understand is Evertonians with a "get rid", list.

In my view, every player at the club should have a chance. I believe some of our squad could perhaps be a revelation under a proper coach. Super fit, well motivated and confident. None of that costs money. Oumar Niasse for example. He may indeed be not much good... but, to judge him on the very limited chance he has had, seems to me to be harsh. Fit, a run in the side, confidence boosted; who knows what we might see? Anyway, someone at our club thought he was good.

I think every player should have a clean slate. When the influence of the abysmal Roberto Martinez is removed, who knows what we might have? It might be like half-a-dozen new signings.
Andy Crooks     Posted 17/06/2016 at 20:44:13

Stick or twist

It is being reported that EFC plan to offer Lukaku double his wages to stay at Everton.

I have pretty fixed views on this.

He has 3 years remaining on his existing contract.

He has disrespected the club by mouthing off in public about him needing a CL club.

Although he has a pretty good goalscoring rate his general ability and hold up play leaves a lot to be desired.

Under normal circumstances I would send him packing up the road to whatever club wants to pay an outrageous fee for a contracted player and although the media keep talking up the so called big clubs I cannot see anyone stumping up around 60m for him.

On the other hand who would we replace him with. There is talk about Pelle but although he outshone Lukaku in the game the other day his goalscoring rate in the Prem does not appear that good.

Kane and Aguerro would appear to be unattainable and Vardy has already turned Arsenal down.We would need to find a Martial or Rashford and even they may be one season wonders. Jansenn or Milik look good options but have never played in the Premier League.

So, fellow ToffeeWebbers, do we stick or twist? And if we twist who would you go for and how much do you think we could get for Rom?

Jay Harris     Posted 15/06/2016 at 16:47:53

Koeman: More a sinner to the Saints?

During a recent trawl of Everton related media, I came across an interesting commentary by a Saints fan that has been making the rounds on their fan sites.

I'll reserve my personal opinions until the end but I decided it was definitely something worth discussion by the ToffeeWeb faithful.

At the end of the season, Koeman verbally agreed to a new contract with Saints, even down to such details as what players would be leaving [Wanyama (most likely to Spurs), Pelle (most likely to Lazio), Juanmi (to Sociadad, already done) lol, I didn't even know he had gone! and Mane (most likely to Man. Utd)] – as well as discussing our transfer targets into the Club. This was all verbally agreed upon, leaving the finer details of Ron's actual contract itself to be sorted by his agent and settled when he returned from [his first] holiday.

Whilst he was away however, Everton approached Ronald's [now former] Agent, Guido Albers, to sound him out on Ronald's interest in taking up the Everton Job. His agent, taking Ronald at his word - "I like to honour my contract, I like to shtay at Saints" - [bear in mind that the agent had been involved in negotiating Ronald's new Saints contract, and therefore believed that he wished to stay] flatly turned down the Everton approach on behalf of Ronald, and instead put forward the name of another of his clients, Frank De Boer, who was indeed interested in the Everton job. [Two agent pay-days for the price of one!] lou_wink2

Everton, having already been turned down by their first choice, Unai Emery from Sevilla [who is off to PSG] were determined to get their second choice [Ronald Koeman] – and so used Dutch agent Rob Jansen to approach Ronald with an "offer he could not refuse" – i.e. £6-7 mill a year, and £100m transfer kitty to splash. Ronald was furious that his own agent [Albers] had refused the offer without even speaking to him first, and sacked him, taking on Rob Jansen in his place. And here is where things get interesting.

Koeman was not entirely dishonest – as he wasn't really that interested in the Everton job. Who would be, when you've just got your team into European football for the second year running, already enjoy substantial backing from your board, the adoration of your loyal fan-base – and Everton are nowhere? But what Koeman wanted to do, was to use this interest and concrete offer as a bargaining tool when he returned from his holiday, to say to the Saints Board "this is the kind of 'ambition' I am talking about". He wanted to "use" the Everton interest to get himself more spending money with Saints – but he grossly overestimated his own "value" to the Saints Board.

For quite a while now – Saints have not been entirely happy with Koeman. Many of the agreements he had previously made when he first signed, he had not been honouring. The style of football, formation, and most importantly – the much vaunted "pathway" to the First Team from our famed Academy – which under Ronald has been said inside the Club to have become "blocked". His attitude toward our young players, never bothering to involve himself with the Academy or even watch their games [he sees himself very much as a "First Team Manager only" whereas we want our manager to take a keen interest in helping develop our burgeoning talent], often discouraging them, blankly stating that most of them are simply not good enough, and at one point launching into a very nasty tirade of abuse to young Matty Targett, that is said to have stunned those who were there in its cutting spitefulness and completely unnecessary severity. The "esteemed" Ronald Koeman callously tore a sensitive young lad to shreds in front of all his mates, and has since been widely regarded as a complete cunt.

Ronald Koeman, despite his very well presented and controlled public image in the media, is not particularly well liked by many at the Club, to make a sweeping understatement. His aloofness and arrogance on the training ground, his unapproachability, and tendency to snap at players and speak to them in a disrespectful tone has not gone down well. Mane, JWP, Harry Reed, and Tadic in particular have an immense dislike of Ronald Koeman, and others only tolerate his tactless approach as they're regularly in the Team, were enjoying an element of success under him, and don't want to rock the boat. But you get the general idea.

We are also greatly peturbed at some of Ronald's training methods, i.e the lack and short duration of them, the low intensity, and lack of commitment to training in general. He gives the players a lot of time off, and is prone to "disappearing on golfing breaks" when we feel that he should be spending his time coaching our players!

The Board have been questioning a lot about his management style and not honouring his commitments to playing "The Southampton Way" and his stifling of the pathway for our young players for a while now – but whilst he has been enjoying success and has the firm backing of the fans, they have been loathe to take any firm course of action. Ronald got very lucky during our disasterous run of form over the Christmas period, where we lost seven out of nine games, and we were persisting in that horrendous hoofball style of football, lumping long balls up to a woefully out of form [yet constantly picked anyway] Pelle, and privately among the Board, questions were being asked by some, of whether to get rid of Koeman then. But as I say, he got lucky: Pelle got injured, and Ronald was forced to play the excellent Shane Long [who he previously never game a proper chance to show his qualities], and change back to a style of play more suited to our philosophy. Shlong pretty much saved Koeman's job at that time.

So that's the background. Ron thought his "gravitas" in the game deserved a certain respect, and coupled with the success he has brought us – he badly misjudged his importance to our Board. He thought he could use the Everton interest, believing his value and position at the Club to be unassailable – to effectively blackmail the Board into agreeing completely to his own terms to sign a new deal. It wasn't so much about the personal money on offer, but more with getting more to spend on new players than was on offer – and forcing Sadio Mane to stay again against his will. Sadio hates Koeman [the phrase used (by Sadio) was "fucking arrogant asshat"], and the irony is, we now have a higher likelihood of keeping him [Mane], without Koeman around. Not to say that will definitely happen, just that it might.

Koeman gave us an ultimatum, that we could either make him an offer much closer to what Everton were offering – or he would simply not sign the new deal, and see out the last year of his contract as promised. This effectively massively backfired on him, as our Board were really not that fussed. We have other excellent candidates on our shortlist who we feel would stick much more closely to our Club philosophies, and therefore be a better fit with the Club – and as stated – many players who'd be happy to see the back of him.

So the Saints Board effectively called his bluff, and said sorry Ron – either you sign the deal you've already verbally agreed to – or you can take the Everton job and we'll get in someone who will do things the way we want, according to our Club philosophy. What we won't have, is a "lame duck" manager seeing out the last year of his contract, when what we want, is for someone committed to our new Five-Year Plan and hungry to build on what we've already achieved. Ronald simply wasn't showing the kind of commitment we were looking for, so we gave him the choice to either do so, or fuck off to Everton. Lol.

We gave him two weeks to decide what to do; sign the new contract, or go fuck himself. Ron stormed off in a huff on holiday number two after this, and we shall await the final outcome. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that he yet may end up staying, so don't burn any effigies just yet – although to be honest – I suspect that bridge has now been burnt sufficiently from both ends to be unlikely in the extreme. Though, stranger things have happened – like Ronald Koeman being interested in a club like Everton for example, lol. lou_wink2

And this is why the whole sorry saga has been playing out now for so long. Ronald doesn't really want the Everton job – but his own duplicitous conduct has ended up forcing him down a path he was entirely not expecting! He badly misjudged the situation and his own worth to the Club – and thought that we would bend to his will, to keep such an esteemed figure at the Club at all costs. And now – if he doesn't take the Everton job – he looks like a complete cunt, as he [almost certainly] won't be staying at Saints. Well, he looks like a complete cunt either way now, whatever he does, lol.

He's completely blown the reputation he carefully established for integrity, decency, and being a man of honour and respect.

Another thing, is that we will not budge on the finer details of his compensation package with Everton. Some of which (including guarantees that they will not make offers for any Southampton players once Koeman arrives) are proving to be a real sticking point, as is the contract on offer to his brother Erwin, and the fact that both Erwin and particularly Jan Kluitenberg (our fitness coach) are pissed off at Ronald, as they both love being at Saints, and didn't want to leave. Erwin, ultimately, will be loyal to Ron – but Jan (and his family) really love living in the area, have settled really well here and don't particularly want to leave. (He may yet even end up staying). If Everton do not agree to absolutely everything that Saints want – we are quite happy to deny Everton permission to take our under contract manager, and essentially "hang him out to dry" for a year whilst his contract runs down, and we'll get on and appoint someone who does want to commit to us fully.

Moving on to that now – and some details of our shortlist:

Most of the names in the press are not our preferred targets. Don't worry at some of the horriffic options that have been bandied around. The likes of Moyes and McClaren are nowhere near consideration. I've heard Pellegrini linked in the media, and he is on our list, but only as an albeit very decent back up option if we don't get one of our preferred candidates. Eddie Howe I've also seen linked, he is on our long-term watch list of potential managers that is constantly updated, and Les Reed in particular is a big fan – but overall we don't feel that he yet has the required level of experience or "gravitas" to impress our Europe-bound Squad or the names we're looking to bring into the Club. Frank De Boer has also been linked everywhere, and is on our list – but some way down the pecking order, as we prefer someone with experience and evidence of implementing their philosophy across a range of Clubs to show consistency in application, whereas Frank has so far only managed at Ajax.

My friend [indicated to the existence of, but] will not reveal the names - of two of our most favoured options at the top of the list, as they do not want to risk alerting other Clubs to the possibility of their availabilty, but other than those, I can say that Murat Yakin [currently out of contract after parting ways with Spartak Moscow] Vitor Pereira [of Fenerbahçe], Paco Jémez [of Rayo Vallecano] are all managers who are thought of very highly by the Club, sharing in our philosophy and playing the brand of football we like, and have long been on our watch-list. So if we don't get one of our two unrevealed names, those three are high on our appreciated list. So too very much is Thomas Tuchel, but the fact he's only just recently replaced Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund crosses him off of our potential targets for now, [he's unlikely to be interested].

A good read on Koeman.... Seems he left himself short.

Firstly, I feel a distinct amount of betrayal in this piece, which reinforces my view that this is a hit piece against a man who has scorned this insiders team.

But secondly, some of the points raised do grow a level of concern in me. The training issues, the blocking of the academy, the potentially over-inflated sense of self worth.

Thirdly, as a side issue almost, I find the nerve of some of references to Everton galling, and find it painful to see our standing with other fans at a recent low after the last 10 years.

So what do we think Toffeeweb? Who is our future manager really? Is he the much vaunted guiding hand we have view him as, as a majority, or is he the character much maligned in this piece.

Kris Boner     Posted 13/06/2016 at 14:33:34

Modus Operandi

Koeman is locked in, the announcement will be made next week, and as a trusting, loyal Evertonian, I don't doubt this will happen!

In the meantime, we have recently been connected (by the press) with several players as potential "Koeman" targets: Wijnaldum, Nani, Van Dijk, Forster, Pellè, Dann, Cillissen, Dunk, Kean and Clasie.

It might be lazy journalism but a fair few of those names have played for Koeman at Southampton, or previous clubs he has managed or had connections with. Wijnaldum (Feyenoord), Van Dijk (Southampton and Groningen), Forster (Southampton), Pellè (Southampton), Clasie (Feyenoord).

It got me thinking, if this is the new manager's "modus operandi", which other "former players" he has managed, would he want to bring to Everton? Juan Mata (Valencia), for instance? I would be interested to see if my fellow ToffeeWebers could come up with some other names. Just a thing to pass the time with, while we all wait for the official announcement.
Andy Osborne     Posted 10/06/2016 at 14:45:54

While news is quiet...

The quality of build that modern stadiums have is little in compensation for the generic soulless bowls their designs often become, and leave the fan without that feeling their home is something special.

So to help out any future Archibald Leach whose blueprints will become our home long after we've witnessed yet another Champions League victory, I thought some Royal Blue sky thinking could provide some inspiration.

I'm sure there could be better ideas than this, but how about more imaginative?

For the Trafalgar Docks, instead of 4 normal sized stands, why not open an entire side for a view of the Mersey. With the pitch positioned closer to the dockside? It leaves room for three much bigger, more daunting stands.

And like behind the goal at the Aviva/ Landsdown Road stadium you could line the Mersey side of the pitch with a simple token stand about 15 seats deep but behind that have massive clear glass panels that could be opened when the elements allow... or open them anyway when soft southerners come up to play.

Further still for those wanting a VIP experience – there would be no executive boxes, but instead Bill can pick up a second-hand cruise ship on the cheap, set sail pre-match for a luxurious dinner cruise down the Mersey, then dock alongside the stadium for the kick-off with the berths kitted out as executive boxes.

I'll offer this idea for free. No need to thank me.
Nick Entwistle     Posted 10/06/2016 at 12:59:44

Everton Squad, 2016-17

A few years back I posted a similar topic along the lines of 'what if we got a rich owner, would we need to change much? And whom would you want it'.

The general vibe back then is we were not too far away, just needed a couple more class additions, the icing on the cake, you would say. If that new owner arrived, what would we ask of him?

Well, here we are again, but this time it seems to be real. A new era is dawning on us, and I don't think with the current squad we are that far away.

Okay, things have been very poor the last couple of seasons, but I feel the leadership and direction some of the players have been lacking has affected them. I do believe we have some class in the squad: Barkley, Besic, Deulofeu, Stones, Funes Mori – I feel under the new leadership of Koeman they will fulfill their promise.

So, with that in mind, and with the pending departure of Lukaku up front, what do you think we need, and who would you like us to get?

It would be good to hear your ambitions and desires for the new-look Everton. This is aimed to distract from the current 'When is RK arriving/signing' stories, or the DoF Football rumours.

Personally, I don't think we need that much. I'd like the ambition of replacing Lukaku with Higuain, or the Spanish kid at Juventus. That would be a real statement. I'd love to see Baines moved to a central defensive midfielder, like the way Bayern moved Lahm. A World Class goalkeeper to replace Howard too. I'm a fan of Forster, go for him.

Get rid of the deadwood like McGeady, Kone, Niasse. I'd even look to offload McCarthy, Barry and Mirallas too.

I think a new Everton has to rise, and we need to strip it to the core and build on the spine of the Besic, Barkley, and Stones that we have.
Steve Foster     Posted 10/06/2016 at 10:02:43

More scouting options

I'm an ex-Club volunteer, Disability team skipper, fan and scout.

Here are some more players from my recent series of who I believe would make the squad better or whom we could potentially develop:

Outfield players

Gino Peruzzi – Very good right back and good attitude. Would be pricey but worth the punt.

Assane Gnoukouri – (Inter) Midfielder, 19, but over 6ft and strong. Combative and likes a tackle. Big future.

Jordan Cousins – Great leadership qualities, would be a step up for him but real talent

Wes Hoedt – 6ft 4-ish defender for Lazio, really dominant.

Lloyd Isgrove – Great engine, good cross and successful loans away. The next from the Welsh set up.

Robert Holding – Another defender with great aura and attitude. Will be pricey but worth a punt, within this deal some of our lads could go to Bolton to gain first team minutes

Takumi Minamino – Not seen him myself but from my scout friends I'm told this kid has lots to offer and has real work rate and scores

Omar Govea – Porto player, quite raw but so hungry, high hopes for this kid, great engine

Dom Berardi – Italian star, wand of a left foot, very versatile,


Simone Scuffet – What a name! But real good reflexes and has great presence

Mouez Hassen – (Nice) Has real purpose and a good kick on him.

Timon Wellenreuther – Great loan last year. Lots of scouts watching this boy. Very grounded attitude and calm.

Fred Woodman – Could be available after Newcastle's relegation. Good size. Good kick and again lots of clubs watching

Jeroen Zoet – I rate this lad highly, deserves a chance at a better level, winning attitude and great keeper in most departments

Aaron Evans     Posted 09/06/2016 at

A voice of reasonable expectation

I am writing this piece because I am reading too many posts on other threads saying that they expect too much too soon from our team and owner. It is ridiculous for people to seriously post and expect that we will get Champions League next season or even a cup. This could happen but come on – all we can expect is an improvement.

I was going to cherry pick a few comments about how we will have a new stadium in a few years, should be butting heads with Europe’s elite next season and sign established stars of game. But let’s get real.

I think we have the makings of a good squad. If we get Koeman we will have a good (possibly great) manager. In Moshiri without having done anything (yet!) it looks like we have a very good owner. But let us compare ourselves against the competition:

Arsenal are miles ahead in terms of squad and finances. Also plenty of experience of finishing in the top four but consistently inconsistent.

Tottenham are in an even more positive place than us. Great young players in a number of positions, new stadium on the way, richer owner, definitely on the up.

Man City have a better squad, wildly richer owners and on paper one of the best managers around. Crucially a squad that are simply excellent. You’d take most of their’s over our’s.

Chelsea have a new coveted manager, richer owner and a squad that’s won loads recently. That said the squad isn't great..

Man Utd have one of the most successful managers of recent times but a squad that could be compared to ours in terms of quality. Also, they have more money and pulling power.

Liverpool have one of the best managers in the game but less money (apparently) and in my opinion a lesser squad – but only marginally. Pains me to say but they have better pulling power.

West Ham have a new stadium we have kindly bought for them, a real good feeling about the place – reminds me of us after Martinez’s first season.

I have deliberately left Leicester ‘til last because basically they ruin my argument. Anyone can win the league based on perfect recruitment and management. What they did was a joy and I obviously see them as a force next year and hope they win everything after us.

I now come to my point: We can’t expect miracles overnight from our new manager. It will take time. Our rightful place is not amongst the current elite if we haven’t earnt it.

NSNO is a great motto but we’ve dropped from those standards in recent years. Moshiri though does seem to have gone back to that and not taken no for an answer regarding Koeman.

We need to earn our way back there and right now with this squad, this manager and with the money (that we apparently have to spend) this is our best bet in years. But the above people could hit the ground running and we could finish 6th or lower and people will say Koeman has failed which would be ridiculous.

Chris Keher     Posted 09/06/2016 at 02:53:00

Reclaiming the City

In 1892, Liverpool Football Club unwittingly pulled off a remarkable marketing coup, by naming their breakaway outfit after the City of Liverpool. In one fell swoop, they consigned Everton FC, named after a small suburb of Liverpool, as bit-part players in a yet to be realised global football market. For good measure, they also appropriated the Liver Bird as their emblem (not withstanding that Everton FC also used the Liver Bird as an emblem in earlier years).

Fast forward 75 years to a period when Liverpool Football Club's re-emergence as a successful trophy-winning team coincided with the emergence of Liverpool, the city, with the global appeal of the Beatles and numerous other Merseybeat groups. Suffice to say that, since that time, an admission that you hail from Liverpool, will automatically elicit a response based on an assumption that you are a fan of our beloved neighbours. The response to any mention of Everton FC will usually involve a blank stare and total incomprehension.

Enter Mr Moshiri and talk of a new stadium on the north dockside. What a prospect this is, to reclaim some of our lost identity within the city of Liverpool. Quite apart from the advantages offered by the the proposed location, the name of the new stadium could incorporate the River Mersey – how about 'The Royal Blue Mersey Stadium', to re-ignite (at one fell swoop!) the connection between our team and the city of its birth?
Mike Goodwin     Posted 06/06/2016 at 23:02:44

Shareholder sway

I believe we all as Evertonians have a lens through which we view all things blue, the color of which is tinted by our personal history and experience with the club.

My personal involvement dates back to 1985 from afar in Ireland where I grew up. My first trip to Goodison was for a 4-0 drubbing of West Ham in our last season becoming champions in '87.

I've seen good, and I've seen bad but always feel fortunate to have experienced the former and always look to it as the standard to which our club should be held.

Ironic that a club instrumental in the formation of the Premiere league would get left in the dust on all fronts, commercially, honours wise, stadium development, fanbase etc. Our entire cast of board members through this barren era shares the blame, not least the Chairman who is our popular whipping boy. It's been a rough couple of decades but, with a new majority shareholder on board, the outlook again has shifted.

The lens through which I view our club's dealings changes its shade of blue mainly as a self protection mechanism... without hope, there is nothing. Here's how I choose to interpret the near future and as always, based little on fact and heavy on the hope...

A 49.9% stake in the club for Moshiri is no accident; neither is it, I'm guessing, an endpoint. For all their faults and failings, I believe Kenwright and Woods want their legacy to reflect a club in a better place than it was found. They've likely been paid handsomely for shares sold to date and could likely have increased said wealth with a complete sell out as was the case with 'Mr' Earl, a shareholder never displaying any interest in the club other than his personal gain potential.

The negotiations regarding the takeover I believe (based on nothing but blind hope) included benchmarks regarding the funding of a new stadium, investment in the squad and clearing current debt... with all risk assumed by the new shareholder. Until achieved, veto power remains with Kenwright's ~12% and Woods's ~ 8% shareholdings. Once achieved, the remaining shares will either be handed over as 'pre-paid' or at a rate not reflecting the higher re-evaluation.

And so for now, I believe Moshiri is calling the shots on all fronts to move the club forward with purpose knowing that he will, in short order, have near complete control of the club and reap what he sows.

For now, through my lens I read 'Nil Satis Nisi Optimum'... and it's been a while.

Paul Columb     Posted 05/06/2016 at 17:54:42

Before Z-Cars?

Before Z-Cars was introduced, the Blues used to run out at Goodison to a marching band tune. It's driving me mad trying to remember what it was - can anyone help.

I know I should know but I just can't remember.

Laurie Hartley     Posted 05/06/2016 at 12:49:59

What's Our Name?

We are all naturally focused on our new manager but the passing of the legendary Muhammed Ali took me back to 1967 and his (admittedly distant) connection with Everton. Terrell foolishly insisted on calling Ali by his former name, Cassius Clay, and in retaliation, Ali gave Terrell the beating of his life while taunting him with the words, "What's my name? What's my name?"

Within the week and for several seasons after, Everton fans were chanting "What's our name?" at opposing fans while Ball, Kendall, Harvey, Royle & Co, gave their teams a hiding. Those were the days...
Peter Fearon     Posted 04/06/2016 at 21:15:40

When Skies Are Grey, China style...

I'm an English teacher and have been in Asia, mostly Thailand, since 2007.

More recently, I've taught in Vietnam and, currently, am a few months into my second spell teaching in China. Last time, it was for kids, in Beijing; this time, I'm teaching grown-ups in Foshan, southern China.

Point is, yes I'm on ToffeeWeb because I'm an Everton supporter. This means I've been carrying my feelings on all things 'Nil Satis..' and Blue for many, many years, now. Goes without saying, perhaps.

Very recently, I also decided to 'do' an 'English Corner' (a presentation and discussion etc on the teachers own thing, basically) on 'The Ups and Downs of Following Your Team'. I broke into the subject of football, Everton specifically, gently (although most of my students know exactly who I follow in England!) by getting a few thoughts on their own favourite sports and possible 'passions'.

I used PowerPoint to put together (admittedly, containing a few of the more detailed facts and figures, from the usual internet sources) a presentation on Everton, our history, longevity in the English top-flight, some past-managers, trophies etc but also related such slips or near-slips from grace as that heart-stopping 3-2 comeback against Wimbledon all those years ago!!

Of course, none of this info is anything new to ToffeeWeb members, but the passion we all feel for our team(s) back in England was apparently quite a revelation to my, mostly quite young, Chinese adult students.

I got some of their thoughts on how they felt about, how closely they followed, some more 'Chinese' sports, such as basketball, badminton, and 'ping-pong' but they seemed genuinely amazed at the passion we English carry regarding our beloved football teams, notably 'my' Everton, in this case, of course.

To cap this off, as I also have done a few 'singalongs' with these same students (whilst introducing my ukulele!), my final slide contained the lyrics of a song which I, rightfully, hoped they might all recognise.. 'You are my sunshine.' Except, after a cursory, vocal-chord limbering pre-run, I then told the students that this was actually also my team, Everton's, song... hence it's introduction, here. I also asked them if they could think how we could could slightly alter the lyrics shown to make the song 'specific' to the team. They weren't sure.

Click... click... click... and suddenly the word 'Everton' swept down to cover all the instances of 'sunshine'!! A few rounds of 'You are my Everton..' later and arms were swaying in the air!!!

I loved it, THEY loved it, and (you never know!) maybe our love for the blue shirt has inspired a few new Goodison Blues in this neck of the woods!!
Lee Brownlie     Posted 03/06/2016 at 12:07:13

Grand old team

After reading the recent praise on here for Gareth Barry, I was wondering if there were any other players that came to us late in their career that people would like to have had earlier – and further to that, could we get a team out of them?

I'll start by nominating a keeper. For me Nigel Martyn was an excellent signing and I would've loved to have seen him with us earlier in his career...
Les Green     Posted 01/06/2016 at 12:27:03

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