Steven Naismith has made just one start since scoring a hat-trick against Chelsea
The Scotland international has made just four starts this season, the last coming in the disappointing 3-0 defeat to Manchester United in mid-October, and while he acknowledges the stiff competition for places posed by the likes of Ross Barkley and Arouna Kone, Naismith wants regular first-team football.
The former Rangers forward looked to have been given an opportunity to enhance that prospect in August when Norwich City lodged an £8m bid for his services, a move that Naismith was prepared to make but Martinez blocked the move citing the 29-year-old's importance to Everton.
That seemed to have been underscored when he came off the bench against Chelsea and scored a superb hat-trick but his chances have been limited since the. It was agreed that the player's situation would be reviewed again during the winter transfer window and with just two substitute appearances since his last start, Naismith says that he might have to consider moving on if things haven't changed by then.
“We’ve got a squad that is full of unbelievable young talent and when you’re not playing, it’s amazing to sit and watch these guys play with no fear,” Naismith told the media at a Christmas event benefitting the homeless put on by the Loaves and Fishes charity in Glasgow.
“But on the other side of it I’m frustrated that I can’t get into the team. Other times I’ve been out of the team it’s been because of injuries, but this time I’m fit every week, so it’s hard to deal with.
“However, as long as this good run goes I’m just going to have to get used to being on the bench.
“When Norwich were interested in me in the summer, it was the manager who said he didn’t want it to happen. But as a player you need to think about all your options.
“The manager said we’d speak about it again come January time so we’ll do that.
“At the moment I’m just concentrating on playing my football as part of a great squad and hopefully if I get my chance to play again, I take it. But you’ve got to weigh up all your options and see where you’re at.
“At the start of the season I wasn’t playing then got thrown on nine minutes into the Chelsea game and not many people would’ve seen me scoring a hat-trick. That shows you how quickly it can change.”
Reader Comments (76)
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1 Posted 09/12/2015 at 18:48:24
2 Posted 09/12/2015 at 18:50:00
Decent squad player, good lad but not quite the level we need.
3 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:01:56
4 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:02:04
6 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:16:10
7 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:18:36
Also, he might not be up to the standard required but again if injuries and suspensions deplete the team he is a good stand by.
8 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:27:55
9 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:31:45
10 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:33:25
Reality is that Nais is never gonna be an every-week striker for a halfway-decent Premier League team. Look at Anichebe and Jelavic and even Radzinski. All left our bench to sit on someone else's.
Naismith has a choice: stay here, be a useful squad player for a few more years, maybe play in Europe, maybe win a cup. Or get first team football every week in Scotland or for a mid level Championship team.
11 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:34:58
12 Posted 09/12/2015 at 19:42:30
I can understand why we did it lack of backup and depth but, in fairness to Naiosmith, he wants regular first-team football; when all the players are currently fit, he won't get much of look in as has been shown.
Martinez may look to bring in a striker in January (so Naismith can move) or Naismith may have to sit the majority of the season on the bench (if Martinez can't find a suitable player), and move on in the summer. It's unfair to keep a player that wants to play first-team football.
Big fans favourite for his endeavour on the field and behaviour of it, seems a great guy, but difficult to see anything but pastures new for him, if not in January, then certainly in the summer.
13 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:11:23
I really like Naismith and glad he proved his doubters wrong by earning himself another contract. But at his age, he needs to be playing regularly, so I totally understand if he's thinking of moving on.
14 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:18:24
The squad is too big and we are lopsided with midfielders so to move players on who are fringe players makes a lot of sense... although I will be gutted to see Mirallas go but it's quite clear Roberto has some beef with him!
15 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:33:23
17 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:44:28
The likes of Nessie, Hibbo, Pienaar, McGeady and, possibly, Ossie need to be released (with honours) as they can no longer offer us anything on the pitch.
18 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:47:18
Great attitude, always gives 100%... I wish him all the best if he moves on.
19 Posted 09/12/2015 at 20:54:58
20 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:14:50
I've been surprised we haven't gone for him before now, I'm sure he only went to Norwich for £2m?
I wonder if he has an attitude problem, as nobody else has gone for him since he's been at Norwich and he's looks a player to me?
The rest of the Dad's Army you list need moving on next season.
21 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:35:48
22 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:43:05
How we refused ٦m for him is hard to understand, I feel he's a ٢m player, tops; if we can get that bid again I'd take it.
٦m to spend on a younger squad player with potential, would get us a quality youngster.
Another big thing to look at would be to sell Howard or Robles for ٠-4m and or McGeady to bump the ٦m up to 㾸m and buy ourselves a top keeper.
All-in-all, Naismith is a nice guy with a fantastic work ethic but he's not good enough.
23 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:49:22
24 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:57:50
With Barkley, Deulofeu and the surprising Kone offering more up front it would seem likely Nessie along with one or two others out of favour may be allowed to go in January.
Maybe we can swap him for Vardy?
25 Posted 09/12/2015 at 21:59:12
McGeady and Mirallas will be off, so we'll be two down.
I don't even think there's is as such (right and left wingers anymore), they seems to switch mid-game these days.
26 Posted 09/12/2015 at 22:43:42
Only Kone in my eyes from this season's displays would get a extension out of them.
Then you have Naismith, Mirallas, and McGeady that would be up for leaving and could boost some spending budget from sales.
27 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:05:01
Regardless of whether he stays, if Rom gets crocked, then who plays the lone striker role?
28 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:26:20
He may be a little inconsistent but he's an intelligent player and reads the game, not forgetting his energy and work rate. A player who chips in with 8-10 goals a season isn't that bad. If Kone picks up another injury, we are in trouble again.
Keep Naismith until the summer, I say, and wait for the right replacement to become available, which won't be in January.
29 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:33:50
He will be sold next summer along with Rom and Stones. I can't see this team breaking into the top 4, as Roberto refuses to address the defensive side of his game.
However, if Naismith does go I wish him all the best.
30 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:39:14
Fantastic attitude from a really nice guy. Steven Naismith knows his limitations but gives his all and never moans. Mirallas should take note on how to go about things.
Everton will listen to any offers for McGeady also in the window. Hopefully we get our No 10 we so badly need.
31 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:42:03
Three potential "recruits" that could turn us into definite top 4 material.
Yarmolenko £15 million approx.
Batshuayi £12 million approx.
Dragowski (GK) £3 million. 18 years of age but will become a major asset for any team. Howard can see out his last year or so and move on to Major League Soccer.
That's £30 million outlay.
Sell Naismith for £8 million, McGeady for £3 million, then this will reduce it to £19 million.
32 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:52:40
He's done nothing but give 100% to the cause. I think if he can't see the pitch and we can get good value for him, shake hands and by ALL means wish him the best.
If every player who pulled on the Blue shirt brought Naismith's attitude and work effort, we'd win the league at a canter. Bit of an exaggeration but take the point. Great player if not the most gifted.
33 Posted 09/12/2015 at 23:57:42
We need Koné to be the back up striker, and we need a better option on the left (although I am hoping Mirallas will get a look in at some point). Mirallas on the left, and Deulofeu on the right, really would give us some options going forward if they are both on song...
34 Posted 09/12/2015 at 00:00:26
(I've updated our squad page accordingly; apologies if you used it as the basis of your post.)
35 Posted 10/12/2015 at 00:27:29
And now Chelsea and Arsenal are sniffing around as well...
36 Posted 10/12/2015 at 00:37:16
£20M for Naismith, Mirallas and McGeady (three players that hardly get a look-in and won't affect our season) is a good amount for Martinez to add to the squad in players that could be starters and take us up a level.
He's a decent bloke; if playing regularly, I'm sure he could get between 10 and 15 goals a season. I hope clubs are interested in him and that he pushes for a transfer.
37 Posted 10/12/2015 at 02:04:55
38 Posted 10/12/2015 at 03:24:47
In any other club, you would have a good chance of getting 20 minutes or more as a sub some weeks, but this manager believes in 85th-minute subs or none at all. This poor judgement by Martinez isolates players like Nessie and Mirallas from being part of the team.
39 Posted 10/12/2015 at 04:12:00
I don't think we could replace what Nais brings to the table for £8 million when sums like that are being thrown around by Bristol City and Sheff Wed on lower league players.
That said, if McGeady leaves I don't see us getting any new at all. Between Everton and Spartak he's played about 20 league games in 3 or 4 years. He's worthless. No one will pay a fee for him.
40 Posted 10/12/2015 at 05:02:14
41 Posted 10/12/2015 at 05:25:08
42 Posted 10/12/2015 at 05:30:43
...and it's working great for everybody but Naismith. I understand his frustration, but he's been well and truly beaten out.
Hope we keep him the rest of the season, however... because there's no way Kone makes it through to spring without at least one injury.
43 Posted 10/12/2015 at 06:20:24
I can't see Yarmolenko going anywhere now that Kiev have qualified for the UCL knockout phase.
44 Posted 10/12/2015 at 06:25:04
Both players play for their countries and both are solid professionals. Thing is, no-one ever came calling for Tim Cahill and Norwich just offered a wedge for Naismith. Both are very good players.
Maybe it's a good time for Naismith to move on and offer an opportunity to one of the kids coming through? Conor Grant or Conor McAleny?
45 Posted 10/12/2015 at 06:36:56
In the meantime, I am surprised that Martinez has not utilised him more often in recent games. With all the League Cup, FA Cup and the fixture congestion in the next 6 weeks, perhaps Naismith will will get opportunities to show us what he can do?
47 Posted 10/12/2015 at 08:10:58
48 Posted 10/12/2015 at 08:16:48
49 Posted 10/12/2015 at 08:42:12
Chance of RM doing this = nil, of course.
Naismith scored the best hat-trick I have ever seen or that most readers will ever see (assuming they saw it) and I am convinced the benefit of his influence on the other players is underrated.
50 Posted 10/12/2015 at 08:52:29
A good lad and he's been a decent player over the years but time for him to be moved on. No way he should be playing ahead of Deulofeu, Barkley, Mirallas, Koné etc...
51 Posted 10/12/2015 at 09:14:12
52 Posted 10/12/2015 at 10:01:24
We should hold on to Naismith. He comes over as a genuine guy with a 100% correct attitude and a model for youngsters, some of whom think football owes them a living. If we get a spate of injuries, how many experienced players of Premier Lague quality yes, he has got it do we draft in as replacements?
RM should at the very least be using him as a sub for the final 20-25 minutes of games, if only to rest others. But then that's RM for you.
53 Posted 10/12/2015 at 10:41:33
If we were to get another £8m offer i'd be tempted. Partly because I think thats good value and we could potentially spend the money on something more needed (like a dominant keeper) but also because the guy really wants to be playing every week and I think he deserves to. He's not first choice for us or possibly even second choice so if we can replace him wisely and make him happy then it could be best for all parties.
55 Posted 10/12/2015 at 11:26:09
Maybe in the summer we could let him go...
56 Posted 10/12/2015 at 12:28:31
57 Posted 10/12/2015 at 12:37:43
Unless we can trade him for a Lukaku back-up, then keep him or trade in Summer. He's a decent finisher and we've started creating more chances.
There is a lack of strikers that can, you know, score goals in the Premier League so don't undervalue him either.
58 Posted 10/12/2015 at 12:49:38
The thing is if he were to move on there's no guarantee of getting regular gametime. No player is allowed that luxury. There's plenty of games coming up so I'm sure he'll get his chance. If I was Martinez, I'd look at it at the end of the season.
59 Posted 10/12/2015 at 13:54:09
I know he earns an awful lot of money but I've just read the article on the Guardian website about his Loaves and Fishes project in Glasgow. Fair play to the guy. It would be easy for him to play golf and count his money. If he does leave Everton then I'm sure he would be afforded a brilliant reception on his return. He would be a good player for a lot of clubs.
60 Posted 10/12/2015 at 14:31:01
If you asked me if a ball was played into the box or a one on one, who would I want to it to fall to, I would pick Naismith everytime.
Hes not the best footballer blessed with dribbling skill, but whenever he plays, he never stops harrassing opponents, and in front of goal you always know he will pop up with a goal.
Its a shame hes not on the end of some of Delboys crosses because I really do believe he would have buried some of the chances we fluffed.
I hope we keep the guy.
61 Posted 10/12/2015 at 14:36:39
62 Posted 10/12/2015 at 15:03:40
63 Posted 10/12/2015 at 15:17:29
And I don't blame him for wanting a move away from Goodison.
65 Posted 10/12/2015 at 16:03:20
66 Posted 10/12/2015 at 16:31:08
Also he's a good person to have round the squad! A footballer with morals hard to find!
67 Posted 10/12/2015 at 17:03:55
If anyone will take him in January, I think we should let him go. Going all soft and mushy over his off-field generosity is coming close to derailing us from the prime objective here, which should be winning trophies! We need to be ruthless.
I think Roberto has been more than generous in giving him four massive opportunities to show if he could do it again after Chelsea. Verdict: he hasn't done it. Although this is football: there's no telling if coming on as another 9-minute sub could lead to another brilliant hat-trick. But the odds against must be rather large...
69 Posted 10/12/2015 at 20:43:50
The player's 'off-field generosity' has nothing to do with it he can be just as generous elsewhere but to have the moody Mirallas as our only goalscoring threat should anything happen to Lukaku is hardly sound planning.
70 Posted 10/12/2015 at 21:03:25
Tom 22, Vardy? He's worth at least 30m imo. ~15 goals a season and that work rate, 30m is cheap (relative to other strikers sold). Way out of our range and risk level given his age. I don't buy the media talk that Leicester should sell him for 20m. Leicester should be smart enough to squeeze every dime out of some big sucker and I don't want it to be us.
72 Posted 11/12/2015 at 00:41:51
Also the 'moodiness' or Mirallas has nothing to do with it either he is still a more potent goal-threat than Naismith.
What makes little sense is to keep both Naismith and Mirallas and play neither; hence both making their first noises about leaving in January, hence this entire thread.
73 Posted 11/12/2015 at 07:14:59
There would be serious interest in January. Teams like Norwich and Newcastle who are down at the bottom of the table will both need what Naismith can bring them, i.e fight, determination and goals. In the Championship, Middlesboro and Brighton may consider a move for the same qualities. Imagine what a Naismith could do for their promotion push. £8M+ on a player like Naismith could be a cracking piece of business for many clubs like these.
Naismith will have options. If he is not going to get the proper game time he wants then start both Naismith and the club can start to put the feelers out now. Martinez may already know what he can offer Naismith between now and the end of the season. It may well not be the game time Naismith wants. Make a decision now and try to generate the best deal we can for everybody.
74 Posted 11/12/2015 at 08:00:37
75 Posted 11/12/2015 at 08:49:43
76 Posted 11/12/2015 at 08:58:10
They are Moyes players and I think Roberto wants to build the team in his own way. Most of his buys have been top class, so hopefully there will be some exciting new additions if they are allowed to move on.
77 Posted 11/12/2015 at 09:27:50
On a serious note, Celtic may have come in for him as a sort of 'come home, son' gesture. Unfortunately for us, they run things off very strict budgets and with no real revenue from European football this season, there's not a hope in hell of them taking McGeady off our hands.
As for Bolton, again ideal in that they're local but they're potless. They couldn't pay their players for November.
Paul, I think I read on ToffeeWeb a while ago that Hibbert is doing some coaching with the Academy. I am open to correction on that but if true, and with his contract due to expire in June, I can see him getting absorbed into the full-time coaching staff. Coaching his solid defending, tackling and tracking opposition players into our academy players may not be any harm.
I would actually prefer to keep Gibson. His style of play and range of passing would suit our offensive players at present. Yes, I know his fitness is suspect but I would wait until the summer at least to see how things go with him.
79 Posted 11/12/2015 at 10:09:12
As many have already mentioned, without Naismith, we would be shafted if Lukaku got injured if Mirallas was sold. If either of them leave in January Martinez simply MUST have a replacement lined up.
We don't appear to have any young player ready for first team duty just yet, Rodriguez, if he's going to be good enough is recovering from injury and, well, I have no idea what's happening with the likes of McAleny, currently on loan, or Henen.
There is more of an interest in bringing young defenders in rather than forwards. Surprising when so little attention appears to be given to our first team defence. (Here I go again...)
80 Posted 11/12/2015 at 11:04:38
But we need Naismiths in our squad. When we have injuries, he will come in, try with every sinew of his being, and he will score goals. He is exactly the kind of player who could nab us a goal in a cup final. Will Lennon? Will McGeady?
We have some issues in our squad still. It's bloated in the midfield. I'd like to see Pienaar, because of his injuries leave. I'd like to see Osman, because of his age, go in the summer.
Hibbert needs to go, and McGeady needs to go. I'd also like Howard to go, and personally I think Gibson, for all his passing ability, should leave. I'd like to see a new goal keeper, a top quality creative player, another defender and a striker come in.
I do not want one of those departing to be Naismith. The point of a squad is to have quality in that squad. When a couple of injuries strike, which they will, I would trust Naismith to come in.
When we get back into the Europa league, and we need to mix things up, I would trust Naismith to a do a job. He is not a flair player. He will not excite us. But he is the kind of dependable goal scorer necessary to squads, and to the success of a squad-based game.
81 Posted 11/12/2015 at 11:28:51
We may even need Hibbert who else is there to step in if Coleman and at least one other centre-back get injured?
82 Posted 11/12/2015 at 13:18:09
The answer is No... so we get rid and bring someone in with the money who is better.
83 Posted 11/12/2015 at 16:19:55
84 Posted 11/12/2015 at 18:21:24
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