The manager said in his pre-match press conference that the two players, who have both missed the last two Premier League games with hamstring and knee injuries respectively, were on track to rejoin full training late this week and would then be assessed for their ability to play this weekend.
Muhamed Besic, meanwhile, could be fully recovered from his own hamstring complaint in time to face Bournemouth in the FA Cup in Saturday week. The Bosnian has been sidelined since limping out of the home defeat to Swansea City on 24th January.
And the boss was hopeful over Oumar Niasse's fitness but stopped short of saying that the new signing will definitely be included in the squad for the clash with the Baggies.
Martinez also dismissed reports that Phil Jagielka could join the growing list of players being tempted by big money in China as pure fabrication.
Reader Comments (88)
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1 Posted 11/02/2016 at 12:35:54
2 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:09:40
3 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:15:58
5 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:42:43
6 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:52:33
7 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:59:21
The thought of Tim flapping away at their ONLY ball into the box for 98 minutes and conceding after they spent the previous 97 minutes defending with a 8-1-1 formation to keep it goalless is just too real a possibility.
I need to see Robles concede 3 from a winning position before I can concede that Tim is a better option, and I don't think he will.
Stones needs to sort his head out, or at least get it on to the ball when it comes into the box. Its called defending son.
8 Posted 11/02/2016 at 14:06:11
9 Posted 11/02/2016 at 14:41:09
Not one decent manager in the league would suddenly break up a winning ream after three great results to bring back a suspect goalkeeper and a defender whose head is clearly somewhere else. Martinez is not a man to be trusted.
10 Posted 11/02/2016 at 14:47:25
11 Posted 11/02/2016 at 14:49:01
12 Posted 11/02/2016 at 14:49:11
He simply said they might be fit, and therefore available for selection. All managers say the same thing every week when asked the question about player fitness by the media.
At no point has he said anything about his starting 11. Give the guy a break.
16 Posted 11/02/2016 at 15:11:10
17 Posted 11/02/2016 at 15:24:15
I wouldn't be fussed if Stones doesn't play again this season and sell him in summer. Howard doesn't deserve the stick he gets, he's been a decent keeper for us over the years, but Robles is better and much prefer his attitude during games. But we all know our clown of a manager will put these two back in.
18 Posted 11/02/2016 at 15:41:08
19 Posted 11/02/2016 at 15:45:40
You need a really good, strong manager to weld a group of individuals into a consistent winning team and I genuinely don't believe Martinez is strong enough or skilled enough to achieve that over a sustained period.
20 Posted 11/02/2016 at 16:02:04
All keepers let in goals. We cannot scrutinize every goal. Mistakes happen. But Howards mistakes have been constant. Costing Everton points and seemingly unnerving the defence. How can Robles be dropped? The team is now winning football matches. Albeit against poor teams. But how poor are Swansea? And they won against an Everton team featuring TH and JS.
John Stones will be a gaint in the game. But is he right for Everton. He has been costly this season. Do we want clean sheets? Or do we want to see Stones dribble his way out of defence. And more times than enough he looses the ball, putting the team under pressure. And can he head the ball? Not from what I have seen. People have compared him to Bobby Moore. No way. He has a long way to go before I put that label on him. Moore earned the high plinth that everyone put him on. Moore was a class act. Stones has a long way to go. Stones might reach that level(someday) at a swaggering pin point passing, well trained, giant of a football team. He might someday, make this simple game look beautiful. He might reach the heights at a team that usually score 4 or 5 each game. But is he right for a hard working Everton team. Where pin point passing does not come easy. Were holding on to leads does not come easy. I don't know. But it is there for all to see, that we have done OK without young Stones. Easy matches , or not. We were not winning the "easy" matches with Stones in the team. Let this current first eleven have a proper run of games. Let's see what they can do. Tough as it is on Stones , but sometimes football is not all about playing your best players. It is more about setting up properly.It is more about tactics. It is more about teamwork. Stones will(no doubt) have his day. And what about Lennon and Cleverley. How can Martinez now drop those two. And what about McCarthy? Martinez has now found a winning formation. And the bench is looking strong. Let's not tinker too much . And see where this team can take us.
WBA will no doubt "park the bus" on Saturday. So let's get at them right from the off. Score early. And it could be an interesting afternoon. And we can score early. The new guy will be chomping at the bit. A few more wins, and Everton could be right in the mix. Who would have thought. A week is a long time in politics.Anything can happen. Apply that to the beautiful game, as well.
21 Posted 11/02/2016 at 16:14:23
Such a short memory you have. Here you go.
WED, 27 JAN 2016 LEAGUE CUP - SEMI-FINAL - 2ND LEG, 3-1. Everton scored first. Who was in goal?
Who was in goal for the EPL game versus Man City just before that? What was the score? Howard? 0-0? Thought so.
Robles has been part of a unit that kept a clean sheet but he did nothing special and made four saves in two games facing 6 or 7 shots on target. He has however failed to keep a clean sheet and conceded 4 goals in two games versus a top four team. Hardly superb form right? Interesting that he has almost done as well as Jack Butland but that is a debate for another thread.
If you want to justify keeping Howard on the bench because of the wins, fine. I will accept that as at least an argument but your post is ridiculous.
22 Posted 11/02/2016 at 16:30:35
I don't want to keep Howard on the bench because ot the three recent wins. I want to keep him out of the team because of the total shite he has been for the best part of two seasons and the numerous points he has cost us during that time with his flapping, his inexcusable tendency to get beaten on the near post and his total failure to take command of his area especially at corners and similar set pieces.
Nuff said from me.
...by the way, one of the goals conceded against City, their winner, was conceded at least in part because defenders gave up defending expecting the whistle to go for the ball going well out of play. Neither that goal nor the others were Robles' fault. The best keepers in the world concede goals and nobody is expecting Robles to never do so. The problem with Howard is that he assists the opposition with his obvious weaknesses which have been so obvious they have learned to exploit them.
24 Posted 11/02/2016 at 16:53:14
For what it's worth, I'm pretty confident he'll keep the same side but if he doesn't, so be it. Get behind the team, we've still got loads of quality to beat WBA.
25 Posted 11/02/2016 at 16:53:49
More pertinently, he also didn't do anything absolutely mental or suicidal....and on the 'amount-of-times-he-made-me-shout-"oh-just-fuck-off"-ometer' he barely registered a murmer. Which puts him miles ahead of Tim Howard 'on form' in my book.
26 Posted 11/02/2016 at 17:04:39
So Robles has conceded four goals against a top four team, none of them really his fault. What about the shite from Mr Howard? Four goals conceded in one match. How many times has that happened over the years? Please remind me. How many times has he conceded three goals, this season alone? Please remind me.
But sorry everyone. What am I talking about. Robles has conceded four in five games. And the team has scored eleven in the same 5 games. Shame about that Sterling cross. Cannot blame Robles for that.
Howard or Robles? On current form, it has to be Robles. Any idiot can see that, eh, Jim?
27 Posted 11/02/2016 at 17:11:28
We know (or we hope) TH will not be here next season but we don't yet know if Robles is the answer to our number 1 position and we need to find out. Taking him out of the firing line having been on yet another short run wouldn't make sense, particularly as up to this point in time he hasn't merited being placed back on the bench.
28 Posted 11/02/2016 at 17:11:42
If he brings Stones or Howard back into the team against West Brom that will no longer be the case.
30 Posted 11/02/2016 at 17:21:07
31 Posted 11/02/2016 at 17:54:18
32 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:07:46
I await the groans of displeasure at the match if he is named as first choice on Saturday...
33 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:37:07
He is without doubt the best young defender England has produced in a generation. Yes, he has fucked up more than once this season but at only 21 years old, it's part of the learning curve.
A future Everton and England captain, we should be proud to have him; he is a sublime talent a title-wining team could be built around this kid!
34 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:40:55
There again God knows what Roberto will do!
35 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:42:59
The lad can't do basic defending. A good footballer with the skill of a top class midfielder, but unfortunately he can't defend.
36 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:43:38
Correct. People are going overboard with their criticism.
37 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:50:27
38 Posted 11/02/2016 at 19:04:00
Managers are expected to tinker in the Cup games and we're only playing Bournemouth, anyway. (cough, cough !)
39 Posted 11/02/2016 at 19:14:42
Just asking like!
41 Posted 11/02/2016 at 20:30:46
42 Posted 11/02/2016 at 20:52:28
It doesn't work that way. You cannot excuse the goals conceded by Robles by blaming the defense when that is exactly what happens in front of Howard. Good for the goose and all that.
That is the point, that many of you wish to blame Howard for goals for whatever reason may actually be the cause. I was simply answering Derek's question about the last time Robles conceded 3 goals from a winning position. and making an apples to apples, Man City to Man City, comparison. All I get in return is Howard again being blamed for errors by the defenders and vague claims he has cost us points, he flaps, etc. No facts, again.
Brin, Think what you like. I follow Everton, I admit that Everton came on the radar because of another US player, Joe Max Moore, a disappointment for Everton. I also watched Everton in the Guinness Cup nonsense tournament and the youth play in Texas in the Dallas Cup.
I am not apologizing for Howard. I don't have to. His stats speak for themselves over his career, which, in the end, is all you can look to. Oh yeah, that and both Moyes and RM have made him their number one keeper. I simply cannot stand people being blamed for things not their fault or others shading or conveniently forgetting facts to suit their arguments. My point has always been it is impossible to tell a dip in form when a defense is so poor. Ask Butland, who has leaked goals since his Stoke defense has been decimated by injury.
The defense over the last two games has been organized. This has cut down the number of runs into the box, increased the number of blocks, and prevented a number of shots altogether, forcing a pass instead. That comes from a defender closing down and being in position, in front of the offensive player. That is something our defense was not doing until Stones, Deulofeu, and Kone were left out and Cleverly was shifter to the left with McCarthy healthy.
It is idiotic to say that it is because of the change in keeper who has nothing to do with any of that. Why? Because he is behind the two lines of defense or the box depending on what defense is being played. Robles can no more stop a cross from coming in than can Howard.
43 Posted 11/02/2016 at 21:10:26
Sorry for any confusion but if they're not fit and are only "in with a chance" of playing then by definition there is an element of doubt about their inclusion in the squad.
Jim (39), your defence of Howard is starting to feel a little intransigent and patriotic. The performance of Everton's defence is not the only contributing factor to the goals conceded with Tim in goal – I can reel off quite a few instances where his own poor judgement, poor positioning, lack of discipline, or poor distribution have directly led to goals.
His stats may prove that over his career he has been a very solid performer and a good servant to Everton FC but anecdotal evidence of just watching him over the past 18 months would suggest, to these eyes and many others, that has not been the same player since the World Cup.
In that sense, his presence in goal appears to be having a detrimental effect on the confidence in his abilities of the players around him whereas Robles – and I admit that it's too early to say this definitively but what we have seen is very encouraging– appears to be having the opposite effect. The defence looks calmer and more assured with him there because he commands his box with more conviction and distributes the ball better.
You say that, "Robles can no more stop a cross from coming in than can Howard," but he can certainly deal with those crosses better and it is there where the accusations of "flapping" by Howard are valid. He simply isn't as committed to making the ball his regardless of the consequences to his well-being as Robles appears to be.
Lastly, to echo something I've already said and to agree with a comment further up the thread, if Howard is to leave this summer and the club knows it then he absolutely needs to make way for Robles in all competitions until the end of the season so we can properly assess the latter's suitability for the role long-term.
44 Posted 11/02/2016 at 21:30:43
"He simply isn't as committed to making the ball his regardless of the consequences to his well being"
I admire your subtlety. You are 100% correct in your summation.
45 Posted 11/02/2016 at 21:34:22
46 Posted 11/02/2016 at 21:58:16
47 Posted 11/02/2016 at 21:59:06
48 Posted 11/02/2016 at 22:17:50
He's finished as a top level goalkeeper.
49 Posted 11/02/2016 at 22:25:24
It is an over-used cliche. Just because somebody has played well doesn't mean to say they've been a good servant.
Is any of them a good servant? In what sense? We pay them staggering amounts.
50 Posted 11/02/2016 at 22:34:28
51 Posted 11/02/2016 at 22:42:20
52 Posted 11/02/2016 at 22:50:43
We don't know if Robles is good enough yet, but we absolutely know that Howard is useless and should never play for Everton again.
This good servant thing is getting on my nerves too. Somehow he's stolen a very lucrative living from us, he was never much good and has been an utter liability for the last two years. We'll never know where we could have been this season if that clown had been shown the door.
Undoubtedly the managers biggest mistake and makes you question if he can be so far wrong, and stubborn, about something so obvious then how can he really fulfill our potential.
Everybody is bang on regarding Jim Hardin, beyond pointless.
53 Posted 12/02/2016 at 02:07:32
Robles last 5 premiership games has all ended in clean sheets, even if Howard was playing better, you cannot justify in dropping a keeper who has took his chance.
You go on about the City game, two of those goals were freak goals, can hardly blame Robles, Howard has been poor, no matter how much you like a player, you cannot not have favourites.
In one breath Martinez is saying Howard helping the youngsters, and in the same breath, hes saying our experienced left back Baines has to fight for his place, double standards.
If Baines has to fight for his place then surely Howard should have to as well.
If Howard plays Saturday, Martinez will lose 99.9 per cent of the fans support, good on you Jim for being the exception.
54 Posted 12/02/2016 at 02:09:42
You have, it would appear, completely lost the plot, old bean, with your bizarre defence of Tim Howard which belies the senses. Thanks, Tim, but cheerio: your time is up!
55 Posted 12/02/2016 at 03:21:24
But some of the comments here on Howard are ridiculous - "he's not a good servant to the club"..."has been rubbish for 5 years"...Both statements are nonsense and frankly beyond emabarassing.
His form has dipped since the World Cup but he has been one our better 'keepers since Neville Southall. In fact apart from Nigel Martyn I can't think of a better 'keeper we've had at the club since Neville retired (which was about 20 years ago). Any suggestions Max Murphy #42??
56 Posted 12/02/2016 at 03:42:13
In the last few games, Joel hasn't faced many crosses, and has flapped terribly at at least one. I haven't seen him put in the kind of position Howard was away to Chelsea. He's made some good close range saves, but that wasn't really Tim's problem. His distribution does look good.
My feeling is that there isn't too much between them. If I had to pick I'd start Joel simply because he should be feeling confident and he has the crowd on his side.
Not convinced the campaign against Tim is entirely fair though.
57 Posted 12/02/2016 at 06:19:51
Opponents are all too aware of Tim's predictable short 'roll out' to the nearest defender, and are ready to pounce and put us under immediate pressure and on the back foot before we can clear our lines. My 'opponent' that day tried to make the point that professionals do not get 'nervous' a slight mis-use of the context in which I used the word as it's plain for all to see that when Tim plays the defence tends to go into panic mode when the ball approaches our box, simply because, in my mind at least, they don't have confidence in Tim to effectively handle the coming situation.
With Robles in goal, rightly or wrongly, the defence appears calmer and more confident in his ability to take charge of the situation. Mentally, they are clearly less 'nervy' and collectively display more confidence in Robles,as 'last man standing'. Martinez has to learn to recognise this 'phenomena' and select the best overall defence for the good of the team which for the time being, includes leaving Funes Mori and Jags as first choice centre backs. As others have already said, results don't lie, and if it ain't broken, don't try to fix it, on pain of falling on your ass!
58 Posted 12/02/2016 at 08:52:45
I just would like to add that he deserves a good send-off, a final farewell match, a chance to let the fans acknowledge his contribution etc. He deserves that for all that he has done over the years and let's not take that away that from him for a rough patch (I can clearly see him leaving come summer).
I guess the less he plays, the better his send-off would be and the better his entire Everton career would turn out to be. Hope Bobby understands that. Now that he is not playing and guess will not for sometime (Cup game next), we can clearly do away with some of the flak he is receiving.
59 Posted 12/02/2016 at 09:06:42
60 Posted 12/02/2016 at 09:17:12
Anyone who saw the shameful remarks made to club Captain Jagielka by "fans" when he appeared at Finch Farm with Bill Gates and George Osborne raising money for charity would see just what abuse players take. The same people wouldn't have the bottle to say it to the face of the players so why hide behind a key board and slag them off? Now THAT is cowardice.
As for the 㿞k a week, if your boss offered you a salary like that I suppose you'd turn it down because you're not worth it.....
61 Posted 12/02/2016 at 09:24:29
Maybe this was a sign of things to come when Howard completely misjudged a shot from one of their players from the halfway line!
62 Posted 12/02/2016 at 09:26:30
He peaked a few years back and I, for one, would like to give him a good send off
63 Posted 12/02/2016 at 10:15:56
~ From an Evertonian who has flown for 18 hours from Hong Kong after work on Friday evening to land on Saturday morning at Sir Thomas Hotel to watch the home game against RS this time last year. The guy at the reception (Stephen) gave my room, cos he was a Blue as well, after initially refusing cos it was before scheduled check-in, so that I could at least freshen up before the game. Got pics clicked with Coleman and Mcarthy (who were kind enough, could have been anyone else as well) near the dugout, gave an interview to Norwegian TV reporters just outside Anfield wearing the Blue cap which I bought at the shop whose address was Everton Two Liverpool One.
64 Posted 12/02/2016 at 11:03:46
65 Posted 12/02/2016 at 11:13:49
66 Posted 12/02/2016 at 11:43:12
I agree with you entirely there regarding the abuse players get. It's absolutely out of order. It's the behaviour of low-lifes. I just don't think Howard should be championed as hero. He's served the club for a long time and we've paid him well. Job done as far as I'm concerned. He's a nobody as far as Everton History goes.
67 Posted 12/02/2016 at 11:46:36
If you read all the critiques of Tim Howard on this thread carefully I don't think you will find anybody who holds him responsible for all that ails the Everton defence or, indeed, holds him responsible for every goal conceded. Nor is anybody suggesting that Robles is the sole source of the recent improvement.
What people are critical about are Howard's numerous weaknesses which have never improved and which have allowed organised opponents to exploit them. He has a tendency to be beaten at the near post, far too often: he has a problem losing the flight of the ball when dealing with shots from distance: he doesn't communicate with defenders (how many times have we seen players knock the ball out of play for a corner when a simple 'mine' would keep us in possession? I've seen Jags scold him for that many times): he all but refuses to collect crosses prefering to stay rooted to his line. On the odd occasion he does try his timing is atrocious and his courage is questionable. Better goalkeepers will go through their own defenders if necessary to claim the ball, have a look at some old games featuring Big Nev, Banks, Given, Schmeichel or Wilson amongst others.
Others on this thread have suggested that Howard has been a 'decent' goalkeeper in the past. Everybody has a right to their opinion but personally I have never liked him as a goalkeeper. I didn't like him when he was at Manure and it seems reasonable to assume that they weren't too fussy either hence his coming here. When he did play for them he demonstrated all the same weaknesses he does now. Consequently, his arrival did not excite me at all! Of course, he has had some very good games in the past and there have been occasions when he has won us points....there is no denying that but such games are now very few and far between. Whatever time he had has now gone and we need to move on from Tim Howard. Whether or not his replacement should be Robles remains very uncertain but neither he nor Tim Howard have done anything recently to suggest that the team should be changed in order to facilitate Tim's return.
68 Posted 12/02/2016 at 11:51:41
He's been a good keeper for us, in fact, in my opinion only Southall, Martyn and West are better than Howard since I started going the match in 1959. We've had some real beauts in goal over the years....!
69 Posted 12/02/2016 at 15:51:40
But Lawson, Dai Davies, Wright, Myhre... all good lads I am sure, but not quite mustard cutting.
70 Posted 12/02/2016 at 16:10:29
71 Posted 12/02/2016 at 16:18:51
I do not exaggerate when I say, this season in particular, somebody on this site (and often more than one person) has attributed every single goal we have conceded to a fault or failing of TH.
By contrast, you have many a poster over-egging the performanes and capabilities of Robles, when barely a year ago there were audible groans and some trepidation when he was selected over TH.
In this very thread you have Derek Turner categorically stating "I need to see Robles concede 3 from a winning position before I can concede that Tim is a better option, and I don't think he will."
Yet when Jim Hardin quite justifiably questions Derek's memory, pointing out that is exactly what happened at Citteh in the semi, there follows a number of "yeah but-no but" 'buttery' of the nature of the goals conceded.
Fair enough on one hand, but completely unjust on the other when blatant mistakes by others are exclusively pinned on others. The most obvious one to date is the Stones back pass and the Swansea penalty, which was excused and exonerated by many on here and the blame laid exclusively with Howard. Grossly unjust. The author of that chaos when no danger ensued when he had much time and many alternative options was John Stones, not TH. JS's own reaction at the time demonstrated he himself was conscious of the fact.
In my book the defensive failings, as argued by Jim on many occasions, is due to the failing of the collective - and that includes the manager, his tactics and how he sets up the team - rather than blaming everything on a single scapegoat.
Look, TH's best days are clearly behind. The manager should have acted more decisively last summer in recruiting a worthy replacement. He didn't. On the contrary, RM has repeatedly said TH is his main man for the position. What would some of the hyper-critics say of TH if, on being selected, he refused to play because he didn't think he could cut it any more at this level?
TH's goalkeeping prowess are clearly on the wane. In a true meritocracy Robles deserves to retain his place since replacing Tim. TH may not be regarded as a true legend alongside the many great players who have graced our club. But neither is he a 'nobody' as disdainfully posted by Phil Sammon.
Phil, that comment goes against the grain of how I consider the majority of Evertonians regard ALL our ex-players. Any one and everyone who has played for Everton IS somebody and something special.
Tim Howard has been a very good player for Everton for more than a decade.
Personally, I am dismayed by the intensity of the crudeness and intensity of some of the vitriol directed towards him and the character assasination levelled against him.
73 Posted 12/02/2016 at 16:36:43
I will disagree with those criticizing Stones. Yes, he has made mistakes, obvious mistakes that have cost us goals. No question. Can he improve his positioning? Yes. Can he be more selective when he charges up the field? Sure. Can he attack a cross in the box better? OK. He's 21 and playing the toughest defensive position on the field. CBs especially take time and games to mature.
Just as Barkley is starting to come into his own after RM encouraged him to be aggressive and we lived with his mistakes for what seemed so long, so to will Stones learn more about defending. I suggest watching these past few games from the bench has probably helped him already and I'm glad he getting that look.
John Stones in my mind is a generational talent. Just look at all the English CBs in the league today. None have the talent on the ball that he has. None have the ability to link defense to attack like he does and none have his ability to make something out of nothing. There is a reason why folks throughout the game speak of him as a future England captain, why top teams in Spain and England want him on their teams and why others like Rio Ferdinand praise him so highly.
People seem not to realize that in order to reap the benefits of young talent, you have to live with bumps in the road along the way.
74 Posted 12/02/2016 at 16:48:09
75 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:16:46
Tim Howard has never been a 'very good goalie' for us, he's just not a very good goalie. He's had a few good games but anyone could do that based on laws of average.
He's the worst keeper I've ever seen play so long for any top team. We've had some dodgy keepers over the years but none of them have consistently played...because it was obvious they were bad!
Only 3 better than Howard!? Can't think of 3 worse who played for long, he's far from a legend, apart from in his own mind and in Jim Hardin's good old US of A.
76 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:21:18
Oh, there's so many variations on the theme, but probably along the lines of:
'Thank fuck for that'.
'Very honest of you that Howard lid'.
'Nice to see you making the right decision for a change'.
'Well, it's never stopped him before, has it?'
What was the actual point of the question? That critics of Howard should be grateful he goes out and does the job he's very well paid to do (even if, on occasion, he makes a bit of a prick of himself whilst doing it)? That he should remain blameless after any ricks because 'he's not picking himself, is he?'. That he's still been carrying on as a 'true pro' even after coming in for a bit of stick from supporters? (let's not mention his public, titty lipped tiffs with those paying punters who sit behind him and had the temerity to cheekily cheer when he came and caught a corner).
"Any one and everyone who has played for Everton IS somebody and something special."
You're right of course. Someone like, say...Michael Branch doing a 7 year stretch for dealing drugs is due the utmost respect and I sincerely hope those prison guards give him all the 'special' treatment his status as a disappointing-to-disastrous ex-Everton player deserves because, y'know, he's a somebody.
77 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:22:25
78 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:30:23
David, George WAS OK for a while, after all, he was Scotland's, Scotland's No 1 wasn't he? But I personally don't think he was better than Howard at HIS best.
Mike Price #66
Yes, Mike, only 3 better than Howard for a consistent period. I won't argue that Howard is past his best now, but in his pomp he was a very good keeper. Like you, I can name plenty worse keepers that have (dis)graced the keepers jersey at Everton. Can you name more than three that were consistently better? That you have seen live?
79 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:37:24
John, I don't think that there is anyone who is not of the opinion that Howard is past his best but if he's picked he's going to play whether we like it or not. And I, for one, don't want him as anything other than on the bench.
But slagging him off every time he plays is not going to make him play better is it?
Pity that players like Branch who could have made a good living out of football, and there's plenty of them, have for one reason or another, ended up as basket cases in jail.
80 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:48:26
Maybe not Ray, but neither is a 'slagging off' on this site or social media going to make him play any worse (the player himself said he pays no mind to criticism as anyone who chooses to aim any at him know nothing about the game anyway). Nor does a slating of his on pitch performances constitute anything approaching "character assassination", as Jay claimed.
81 Posted 12/02/2016 at 17:54:50
I give that sort of rubbish a swerve.
I just don't see why some footballers think it's cool to engage in arguments with fans or anyone else. Brainless.
82 Posted 12/02/2016 at 20:02:05
The point was that Howard or Robles is not the reason the defense is playing better. If the argument is the team is winning then fine keep all the players in. However, the only, I will repeat it for you again Victor, the only, apples to apples comparision is Man City since both games were played within weeks of each other, and there were no major injuries to Man City.
Since you have explained away by poor excuses the only accurate comparision suggested, then I guess then Howard should play versus West Brom ( team below us struggling in form just like Stoke and Newcastle) with the same defense and mids to see what the stats show after the game. Then, the better keeper should start the rest of the games.
So are you in agreement that this would be the only objective way to determine if it is the defense or the keeper Victor?
83 Posted 12/02/2016 at 21:44:56
We have, in the main,hired hands at the club. If they give 100% and are good blokes we take them to our hearts. If they score the winner at Anfield we take them to our hearts.Actually we take them to our hearts for the smallest of reasons. However, they earn enough, in my view, to fuck sentimentality out the window.
84 Posted 12/02/2016 at 22:05:07
Howard- not young, starting to diminish physically, nothing to play for, on his final Everton contract.
Robles plays. Howard on the bench.
85 Posted 13/02/2016 at 07:28:37
"Tim Howard has never been a 'very good goalie' for us, he's just not a very good goalie. He's had a few good games but anyone could do that based on laws of average."
Neatly proving what Martinez touches on in his comments about Tim's legacy when he mentions "the short-term memory and assessment" of Howard's 10 years at Everton.
As I said, TH's abilities are on the wane and in the past 18 months his performances have been mixed. Fortunately, unlike some with the attention span and recall of a goldfish - Mike! Mike! Over here! Stop chasing that butterfly! - I am blessed with a decent memory and recall and am happy to state for 8 of his 10 years with Everton Tim played to a very high standard, and the stats prove it.
Tim is 3rd in line after Nig Nev and Gordon West and ahead of Ted Sager in 4th for clean sheets kept as an Everton keeper.
In 2007-08, in spite of missing games through injury, he kept 15 clean sheets, one shy of Nev's record in a single season.
For the next 2 seasons he was ever present, making 107 consecutive appearances and keeping an impressive 55 clean sheets in that run. He went on to set a new record for consecutive Premier League appearances for one club, playing 184 games in a row.
Cruelly for him, Howard got clattered late by a lumbering Orc of a forward against Oldham Athletic in February 2013 in an FA Cup tie and an injury lay off meant that he fell two games short of breaking Neville Southall's club record of 212 consecutive league appearances.
Football is littered with different opinions Mike. And my opinion of your opinion about TH is that it is founded on recent performances, rather than his whole career with us and, as such, when you describe him as a not very good keeper you are talking utter bollox.
86 Posted 13/02/2016 at 08:58:34
You know John, like many on here I enjoy your wacky humorous posts, but at times I wonder if you are a diabetic who posts under a sugar rush, or maybe a fan of the David Bowie-William Burroughs school of cut and copy and mix and rearrange random words and sentences as sometimes it is very difficult to extract any meaning or point from your posts.
But ... always game for a challenge, l'll give it a go.
For brevity's sake, I acknowledge TH's prowess have been on the wane for 18 months but I took issue with how he is (falsely, IMO) being primarily scapegoated for our defensive frailties this season and the vitriolic turn of some commentators, dismissing his 8 years of very good form as I highlight in a reply to Mike Price.
But taking a couple of points out of context and commenting caustically as is your MO, is just facile, attributing to me by slight of hand comments I have not made and opinions I do not hold.
For example, referencing Michael Branch as you do is not making any point at all. It is just idiocy.
Together with your re-working of a Johnny Fartpants skit on the Lukaku stretch (Jaysus... that was painful reading) I don't think you had a very good day yesterday, post wise John.
I'm guessing you enjoy the audience and attention your posting style attracts otherwise you wouldn't put so much effort into your posts, but ... they don't always come off.
Indeed at times you can come across like a Wiz comic parody of an Ian Paisley like character.
"Oh-oh! Here comes the not-so-reverend Dr. Daley, getting hot under his dog collar - again! Time to cover gran's ears before he climbs on his soapbox, preachin' ana screechin' his latest invective that would make George Carlin and Lenny Bruce blink, laced with obscure cultural references that would cause Google search engine to go into meltdown."
PS... I hope Robles continues in goal today. He needs a run in the side to help us determine if, in the summer, we need to sign a new number one, or a back up to Joel. I fancy it will be the former.
87 Posted 13/02/2016 at 09:27:44
Thanks, mate, you've put my thoughts into print without me having to trawl through loads of stats to give a more level headed and accurate synopsis of Howard's time at Everton. I've mentioned earlier in this thread that Howard is probably 4th in the list of keepers I've seen play for us since my first match at GP in 1959. I'm waiting for someone to come on with a list of keepers who have eclipsed Howard in terms of longevity and quality apart from the three I've mentioned.... still waiting.
88 Posted 13/02/2016 at 17:55:37
Not really wanting to dig up threads that should by rights be dead by now, but after sitting through an utterly frustrating 90 mins and then reading your jocular ribbing, I kind of want to reply...just to cheer myself up a little, like.
As one who seemingly likes to structure his posts in the style of an enthusiastic, middle-aged, open university student getting stuck into 'how to bang out the most basic, half-arsed essay imaginable':
'So and so said. Then he said. Then someone else followed up with. After unnecessarily regurgitating what everyone else has already read, and definitely didn't need reminding of (seen as though, y'know, it's right there in front of us and we're not Rooster Cogburn (1) or retarded), I shall now...finally...move on to offer what I hope will seem like a carefully considered, chin-stroking conclusion but, when you boil it down, actually contains all the cutting insight and hard hitting relevance of an investigation into the 'illegal conker trade' by John fucking Craven (2). Either that or I'll just fall back on my most favourite ejection method when I talk myself into a corner and start bleating on about 'sleight of hand' and 'Ad Hominem attacks', before strapping the wings down on my Pegasus (3) and scrubbing the Scarface (4) levels of cocaine residue off it's snout'.
......I take your measured criticism to heart.
(Oh, In case you struggle to "extract any meaning" from that last part: it means the horse you rode in on is high as fuck. No? Still nothing? 'Get off your....'? Oh come on. Seriously, do I have to provide Appendices now for those who can't keep up?).
"I'm guessing you enjoy the audience and attention your posting style attracts otherwise you wouldn't put so much effort into your posts"
Correct, you are guessing. About both any desire for 'attention' and 'effort' expended on my part. I simply post as I write, as I talk, in everyday life. Might've closed off any chance of an ecclesiastical career (as you correctly pegged) but surprisingly works 'Will Ferrell in Wedding Crashers' style wonders at funerals.
"For example, referencing Michael Branch (5) as you do is not making any point at all. It is just idiocy."
Is it now? Idiocy, to me, would be making an all encompassing claim that "Any one and everyone who has played for Everton IS somebody and something special" like putting on a blue shirt...even just the once...instantly places them on a pedestal and commands automatic respect for the rest of their days and then following up such ill thought out guff by failing to see 'the point' when someone slaps them about the face with the fact that they were talking a load of self-righteous shite.
Cliff Notes version: You say anyone who has ever played for Everton is "special" and "somebody". I say, 'Well, what about him? He's a cock and a criminal'. You cry 'You're taking it out of context'. My reply 'utter Rhino bollocks'.
Appendices (just for Jay):
(1) One eyed, patch wearing pisshead played by John Wayne and later Jeff Bridges in 'True Grit'.
(2) John Craven was the crap jumper sporting, Alan Hansen haired, frontman of kiddies current affairs crap/snooze fest 'John Craven's Newsround'. If you actually watched it when young, I'd wager you didn't get 'your hole' until well into your twenties.
(3) A mystical flying steed. At the premiere of 'Easy Rider', a dry Dennis Hopper was surprised to shit when he looked up at the screen and discovered he hadn't actually been darting through the sky on the last living one on earth throughout the entire shoot. And, if 'Captain America' wasn't really that shield wielding, defrosted superheroic dick in a skintight suit who leads the Avengers, then he dreaded to think who the 6ft 5in, hairy arsed, big brick shithouse in a mini skirt and wig was who was sucking him off last night because 'her' real name probably wasn't She Hulk like 'she' said.
(4) 1982 film. Directed by Brian De Palma. Starring Al Pacino with an atrocious accent robbed from Rod Steiger in A Fistful Of Dynamite (also known as 'Duck You Sucker' or 'Once Upon A Time The Revolution'). There's a bit near the end where the main character has a mini coke mountain messing up his desk and he goes full on Robbie Fowler on it. Hence the reference.
(5) Crap (but "a special somebody" to some) ex-Everton striker doing a 7 year stretch for dealing drugs. Seemingly deserving of Demi-god status due to darting about in a blue shirt for bit before becoming a bit of a bad tit.
89 Posted 13/02/2016 at 18:44:48
It is bad enough you having a go at Tim Howard all the time, but now to pick on a real-life fictional "American Hero" too. Enough is enough, Sir. I would suggest pistols at dawn but the distance is too great for any real accuracy. Also, we would have to figure out whose dawn we would use.
Rooster Cogburn was not ignorant or even uneducated. Is it because he had one eye that you put him into the Quasimodo category of fictional characters who must be stupid or ignorant due to a physical deformity?
Rooster Cogburn. Fictional Marshall in the movie True Grit (1969), directed by Henry Hathaway. Reference to the 2010 crap remake deliberately omitted.
Quasimodo. Fictional character in The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (1831) authored by Victor Hugo.
90 Posted 13/02/2016 at 19:08:05
I thought for sure you would be riding in to defend the honour of Steve Rodgers there.
Yes, it was, admittedly, just a very lazy reference to the fact old Rooster had a patch covering one pork pie, with the other being partial to a bad case of 'beer goggles'.
Probably my second favourite John Wayne movie, after 'The Searchers' by the way (I begrudgingly grew to admire The Duke after my old man forced me to sit through his films countless times as a kid, when I would rather have been watching something 'cool' like...err...Dogtanian and the three Muskahounds). Although, I actually didn't mind the remake.
91 Posted 13/02/2016 at 22:05:56
The Searchers is my third favorite. Rio Bravo is my favorite because of the cast, rather than the depth of the script, or the quality of the acting.
92 Posted 15/02/2016 at 16:14:41
Well miaow you Kitty!
First, let me thank you for taking the trouble to reply to me within an hour of attending yet another disappointing home defeat to the Baggies. I'm flattered you prioritized me over so many possible alternatives Saturday evening.
Secondly allow me to address the points I think you're trying to make as it's very hard to identify the same in so much empty verbiage.
Across the 2 posts you address to me you appear to take issue with 2 things I wrote in post 64. Namely:
"What would some of the hyper-critics say of TH if, on being selected, he refused to play because he didn't think he could cut it any more at this level?"
By isolating that paragraph alone and ignoring what I wrote before that - acknowledging Howard's best days are behind him and suggesting Martinez is culpable for not addressing the goalkeeper issue last summer - is evidence of what I meant by your devious slight of hand.
For your own purposes (whatever they may be...) you completely distorted my meaning by taking out of context what I consider a legitimate observation.
Similarly, the 2nd point you are seemingly outraged by was the following:
"Any one and everyone who has played for Everton IS somebody and something special."
Once again, to indulge your own cantankerous and indignant nature, you have taken a single sentence of mine out of context and, as you did with the previous example, contrived to attribute to me opinions I have not expressed, or even hold.
I do not, for example, give carte blanche to current or former players, place them on a pedastel or elevate them to demi-god status as you attempt to falsely attribute to me.
Indeed, I have not expressed in this thread, or on TW ever my views on the cult of celebrity. Believe me, how the 'meedjah' and public collaborate to 'build 'em up and chop 'em down', in an Orwellian-like switching of aliances between Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia and back again would not get a sympathetic airing by me.
The sentence you cherry pick was part of a very explicit and specific response to a single poster in this thread who tried to denigrate TH by calling him a nobody.
I expanded on that - justifiably, I believe - by mentioning many Evertonians hold our ex-players in affectionate esteem and in THAT sense each one of them IS somebody and someone special.
To spell it out a bit more clearly for you, over the club's 138 years there are very few people who have worn the blue shirt of Everton. That alone makes them special. I seem to recall David France worked diligently on identifying every single player who has done just that in one of his many Everton-themed tomes. I'm guessing the number may hover either side around the 1,000 mark.
THAT was my context and meaning (in reply to Phil Sammon's airy dismissal of TH as a 'nobody').
But you, (you playful kitten you!) worry over those 2 comments like a wee pussy chasing after and failing to pin down a butterfly.
You and I, cat man, are similar in some ways. We don't passively tolerate lazy analysis or extreme observations on this site that can be easily challenged or dismantled.
I hold my hands up and admit I have used tart, robust rebukes on TW at times. However, there is a singular difference between us and how we post. My more fruity comments are an infinitely small appendage to a fuller text in which I present my opinions, rationally, eloquently, often backed up with relevant and referenced data.
Indeed, I am often praised for the excellence of my posts. Equally, I am often resented for my posts by those whose toes I trend on by challenging their fixed, absolutist positions, as mentioned. To that I can add the editors of this site have seen fit, on occasion, to take a post of mine buried in a thread and to make it the lead post in a new thread.
Such a reaction across the full spectrum of TW suggests to me ... I'm doing 'ok' with my posting history and style on here, ta very much!
I am under no illusions how I am perceived by some on here, particularly sensitive souls who wish to spout unsubstantiated bigotry who resent having their prejudices challenged in any form.
I have (wrongly, in my eyes) been accused of 'belittling' people. As I respond to such claims, I play the ball, not the man. That is, primarily I engage in the issue, rather than engage in tit-for-tat abuse of another.
You, by contrast, (you playful ball of fur you!) regularly display a viscious, venomous, caustic and sarcastic tone of very personal abuse and ridiculing of fellow posters on TW which has little or nothing to do with the view you are challenging.
Your posts to me in this thread are of that ilk.
Your last post to me contains 787 words (thank you Microsoft and Word for the copy-paste and word count facility), 90% of which are the redundant ramblings of a self-indulgent egoist. Barely 70 words (and that's being generous) are dedicated to the points you challenge me on, and even the bulk of them are a misrepresentation and fabrication of what I actually said.
Now you say you write on here as you talk in every day life. Seriously?! Spend a lot of time in casualty, d'ya Whiskers? You must be running out of lifes! Every day you walk up to complete strangers and berate and denigrate them in front of their peers for what they've just said and how they've expressed it?
If that's truly how you conduct yourself 24-7 I'm surprised you're still alive! Be careful around open lift shafts, or moving trains or buses in case someone you've joshed with lands a strategic elbow in your back before looking down at your crumpled and broken body and uttering a faux ... 'Opps!'
Finally, to address a couple of other comments you make.
If you are going to ridicule my legitimate and appropriate practice of quoting specific passages from posts I am responding to (a common practice by many on here) it's not too bright of you to then indulge in the same practice yourself, least of all in the same post in which you have berated me. There's a word for that: hypocrisy.
If you are blind to some of the more excessive criticisms and evident character assasination of Tim Howard (that you apparently deny), maybe you could appeal to the editors to arrange some tech wizardry and produce a braille version of TW, or train your guide dog to read aloud to you so in future you don't miss such postings. Arf! Arf!
And finally, if my very mild expressing of basic human decency - saying I am dismayed at the crudeness and intensity of some of the vitriol directed towards TH - amounts to me riding a moral high horse in your world view, then - hey! Guess what? I'll sit very comfortably in the saddle, ta very much!
I'll leave you to look down on me from your Zealous Zephyr, buoyed by your own inflated opinion of yourself and self-generated hot air (from which orifice, I couldn't possibly say...).
So thanks again for your observations Puss-Puss, but ... on reflection, I don't (as someone described you in this very thread...) find you 'scary' at all. Rather, when you go off on one and deliver a post of searing personal abuse as is your frequent inclination, I find you trite and ridiculous.
To bad if I piss in your litterbox, but I will not be intimidated by you or any one into changing how I post, what I post, the topics I post on, or when I post.
Be off with ya! Go sharpen yer claws on somebody else's sofa...
93 Posted 15/02/2016 at 16:35:44
95 Posted 15/02/2016 at 16:54:47
96 Posted 16/02/2016 at 19:09:25
Are you...y'know....alright? Or are things starting to get you down a bit, being all cooped up at The Overlook?
Your proclivity to harp on about 'personal abuse' and 'zealous attacks' is really quite puzzling, seen as though there's only one person that I can see who is frothing at the mouth and wailing like the Wicked Witch Of The West when she got a bit of water splashed in her face.
Now, I don't mind people hurling a few insults my way from time to time (in fact, feel free), but what I do object to is someone being so utterly wank at it. At least put a little more effort in than your average bedraggled drag queen lazily squawking 'bitch' every time someone pisses them off. "Cat Man" and "Puss Puss"? Seriously? It sounds like a fucking comic book created by Kerry Katona.
Still, at least it gave us this quite astonishing gift:
"I present my opinions, rationally, eloquently, often backed up with relevant and referenced data.
Indeed, I am often praised for the excellence of my posts.....To that I can add the editors of this site have seen fit, on occasion, to take a post of mine buried in a thread and to make it the lead post in a new thread"
Seriously, that is genuinely, utterly, fantastic. Easily the funniest, most cringeworthy thing I've ever read on here. It's like that bit in Alan Partridge where he tries to draw a big chalk cock on his own back. Except you actually succeed where he fails.
You're the only poster i've ever seen feel the need to praise their own contributions. I don't know why, but it provides a genuinely fascinating insight and I hope to fuck you carry on and run with the idea, because it suits you to a tee:
Jay Wood (80): WaffleWaffleWaffleWaffle
Jay Wood (81): Jay Wood @80, just brilliant. Probably the most insightful, intuitive, and downright inventive post I've ever had the pleasure of reading. On here or any other public forum. The way you managed to cover all the relevant issues, in a manner akin to an eminently more slappable Ian Hislop, was a sight to behold and one I shall treasure for all eternity.
Jay Wood (82): Much appreciated Jay. You're a gentleman and a scholar. Nay, the gentlest of all gentlemen and the scholariest of scholars.
Someone Else (83): So, he's fucking Gandhi now then, is he?
97 Posted 16/02/2016 at 19:31:51
"My more fruity comments are an infinitely small appendage to a fuller text in which I present my opinions, rationally, eloquently, often backed up with relevant and referenced data."
"Indeed, I am often praised for the excellence of my posts. Equally, I am often resented for my posts by those whose toes I trend on by challenging their fixed, absolutist positions, as mentioned. To that I can add the editors of this site have seen fit, on occasion, to take a post of mine buried in a thread and to make it the lead post in a new thread"
Pleeease make this be real (and not a hack or satirical post of some sort).
For me the world is a better place if there are real Partridges in it.
'Post a fixed, absolutist position I disagree with Lyn and I will tread on your toes.....not literally, that would be hideous'
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