Vlasic 'professional' about not being selected

Saturday, 11 November, 2017 40comments  |  Jump to most recent

Nikola Vlasic says there is no issue with his dearth of recent game time at Everton, and he has not spoken with David Unsworth about it.

Talking to 24 Sata, in his homeland, he said: “It was good at the beginning when I came, but the coach changed.

“I haven't talked to the new coach about why I'm not playing, it is about professionalism: you do not play, you do not play, you're on the bench and that's it, there is no story.”

Vlasic has featured nine times for Everton across all competitions this season. This includes playing four games in the Europa League, four in the Premier League and one League Cup fixture.

Article continues below video content

In his nine games he has scored one goal, in the Europa League fixture against Apollon Limassol, which helped the side to a 2-2 draw.


Reader Comments (40)

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Dermot Byrne
1 Posted 11/11/2017 at 21:29:00
A few could learn from this young man. I like his fast play and attitude.
Andy Meighan
2 Posted 11/11/2017 at 21:46:15
Strange the way he seems to have been ostracized since Unsy took over. To be fair, the lad was a shining light in a cloud of darkness.

I could be wrong here – maybe this is Unsworth's way of saying, "I didn't sign you and wouldn't have but sorry – you're not in my plans."

Funny how his sister, supposedly on social media (god I hate them words), is saying he's fine but the club is saying he's got a knock. Let's be honest, if Unsy stays as manager until the end of the season, then Nikola won't figure much. Shame really...

Steve Ferns
4 Posted 11/11/2017 at 21:53:32
Good lad. He’s going to be a top player. Just needs to be patient and bide his time.
Tony Hill
5 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:06:17
I think this young man is going to be excellent for us. He already has been, when everything else was going to shit.
Eric Paul
6 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:07:44
He has been one of our better performers should be in the starting 11
Neil Copeland
7 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:08:54
Yes, agreed. Seems to have a good attitude and great to hear he is getting on with it. I am sure he will get more game time soon, has a lot to offer.
Kevin Day
8 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:16:51
He’s the one omission from the starting 11 I’m most surprised about, pace energy and that little bit flare, I’m hoping he’ll be back soon.
Barry Pearce
9 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:19:02
He deserves at the very least, to be in the squad.
Brent Stephens
10 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:24:10
Should at least be on the bench. Some lapses in concentration defensively but otherwise has impressed.
Paul Kelly
11 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:26:41
Refreshing to hear, definitely not Belgian is he!
James Stewart
12 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:32:30
Should be playing. One of the few to actually perform this season.
Sam Hoare
13 Posted 11/11/2017 at 22:51:22
Strange that he has not been at least on the bench as he has the capacity to do something special. I imagine that Unsworth sees him as a similar type player to Lookman and prefers the young Englishman.

I'd like there to be room for both of them but I guess Unsworth feels he needs to make the team more 'solid' at least initially. Would love to see this team given a shot at home:

Kenny. Keane Jagielka Baines
Davies Gueye
Lookman Siggurdsson Vlasic

You could maybe swap in Rooney or DCL in for Gylfi but think the record signing deserves at least a few games run in his preferred position.

Rick Pattinson
15 Posted 11/11/2017 at 23:41:41
He's been a very positive player, good workrate... not afraid to get stuck in. He needs to play. Take Rooney out – stick Vlasic in.
Dermot O'Brien
16 Posted 12/11/2017 at 00:13:28
What a great story about there being no story. FFS.
I like that team Sam #13
Ajay Gopal
17 Posted 12/11/2017 at 02:05:42
I don’t think Unsworth is the egoistic, vindictive kind of manager that Koeman was, “I didn’t sign him, I don’t play him”. But Vlasic has been caught out in possession a couple of times leading to goals (Arsenal and Lyon at home, if memory serves me right?). Maybe Unsy has noticed that and intends to work with him to iron out his game. But good attitude by Vlasic, I am sure he will get his chance later in the season. In the meantime keep working hard.
Mark Riding
18 Posted 12/11/2017 at 03:53:12
Maybe his big famous sister should pipe down about his fitness and non selection on her Twitter ? Just an idea like.
Rob Dolby
19 Posted 12/11/2017 at 07:58:05
If he can settle in Liverpool, he could be the long-term Number 10 in the team. He has good vision and is strong on the ball just needs to stay patient.
Bobby Mallon
20 Posted 12/11/2017 at 08:24:40
Andy Mieghan @2 – and if that's correct, what you say, then Unsy is no different to Koeman in the way he treated Naisse. Shocking really.
Dave Abrahams
22 Posted 12/11/2017 at 08:54:56
Ajay (17) nobody has been caught in possession and given the ball away more often than the man who receives the highest wages. Vlasic's omission says a lot about David Unsworth to be honest. To leave this young lad out of the squad completely requires a good explanation.
Chris Gould
23 Posted 12/11/2017 at 09:14:02
Dave, I completely agree. I'm concerned that Unsworth isn't selecting him because he isn't one of his own U23's. I can't think of any other reason for him to not make the matchday squad. He's had one lapse defensively and for some reason that's highlighted. Lookman has been caught in possession countless times, as have many senior players. Every player in the team has been caught out positionally this season. Surely Vlasic isn't being punished for one lapse?

For Vlasic to not even make the bench is a dereliction of duty by Unsworth. Players need to be selected on form and ability and nothing else.
Vlasic has been a breath of fresh air. It pisses me off to see him treated this way.

Steven Astley
24 Posted 12/11/2017 at 09:20:21
Deluded! There's a reason he hasn't featured under Unsworth.
Geoff Lambert
25 Posted 12/11/2017 at 09:24:06
Wondered how long before the Vlasic hater was going to comment ha ha.
Peter Anthony
26 Posted 12/11/2017 at 09:59:09
Unsworth's absolute priority is maximising the results and performances of the first team.
It is a man's game, so there is no room for anyone called Nikola surely! Bad joke, sorry, I'll get my coat.
Personally, I feel sure Rhino and his coaching team are helping Vlasic on the training ground, as part of the first team squad, and will bring him on the pitch when it matters when is best for the team.
IDRUUIT (in David Rhino Unsy Unsworth I Trust)
Fran Mitchell
27 Posted 12/11/2017 at 10:12:08
Haha Steve Astley

But i'd like you to qualify your statement. What is he deluded about, in your opinion. What did he say that made you think 'he's delusional'?

Paul Birmingham
29 Posted 12/11/2017 at 12:03:57
If you have the ability and application and are good enough, then in this case Vlasic should be in the match squads, as he has shown stomach, guts and flair when so called seasoned professionals have been blight, consistently.

Uncertain times at EFC, let’s see what happens this week.

Brent Stephens
30 Posted 12/11/2017 at 12:18:41
Steve, I'm curious about the "deluded". Is something going on in the background?
Nicholas Ryan
31 Posted 12/11/2017 at 12:47:16
To quote comedian Dave Gorman: 'Nicola Vlasic is good-ish'.
Michael Williams
32 Posted 12/11/2017 at 13:41:07
Rooting big time for Unsworth but the complete omission of Vlasic really nags at me.

If several of the U23 deserve a chance to develop then definitely Vlasic does as well. I hope Unsworth is not letting some form of parochialism prevent him from creating the best possible Everton team.

Peter Mills
33 Posted 12/11/2017 at 16:06:26
A strong lad, with a bit of pace. He could play in the position that has been given to Aaron Lennon over the past few games, I suspect David Unsworth is preferring Lennon’s experience in the short term.

Still, it’s surprising not to see Vlasic in the squad.

John Graham
34 Posted 12/11/2017 at 18:59:29
I can't understand why he's not been a regular in the first team. Easily the best player when he's been playing, works hard and shown plenty of skills. How Mirallas and Lennon have been in before him is unbelievable.

I think a forward line of Vlasic, Niasse and Lookman would cause most team problems and then, with Calvert-Lewin on the bench, we would have the attackers we need.

Got to start getting rid of the old guard (Jagielka, Williams, Baines and Rooney) and start putting some speed and energy in the team.

Mike Allen
35 Posted 12/11/2017 at 19:46:11
It's a crime really the way modern-day managers treat players in as much as they assemble big squads knowing very well that most will only be bit players. Then, when these players actually get their chance, they are not match-fit... then they go off the radar for a while.

Must be a terrible feeling when you think you are a cover for a certain position... then, when you think your chance has come, the manager then chooses someone to play out of position instead of you.

How can anyone put up with not playing? Does £40k a week lessen the blow? I would go back to the days of either no subs or for injuries only and bring back the reserve league; absolutely no chance of that happening. However, careers are either stagnating or being ruined by thoughtless coaches and managers.

Arild Andersen
36 Posted 12/11/2017 at 19:57:41
I thought he was one of few positives during the last days of Koeman, and found it strange that he's seemed to be overlooked by Unsworth.

But I also saw the Croatia vs Greece match couple of days ago, he came on in the 2nd half and actually looked a bit unfit compared to his team-mates, and was quite anonymous with the exception of one simply brilliant through ball that the striker failed to convert.

Still think it could be a very good player in him and hope he'll work hard and get his chances.

Tony Abrahams
37 Posted 12/11/2017 at 20:24:34
Sam 13, that's not a bad team, and it shows me that this squad isn't as bad as it looks at the minute. We just need someone to settle us down, stick to a system that suits us, and stop all the chopping and changing, which has been the only thing consistent, about our team so far this season.

Geoff Evans
38 Posted 12/11/2017 at 22:46:56
He'll do for me!
Simon Dalzell
39 Posted 14/11/2017 at 01:41:45
Shocking decision. I am not an Unsworth fan. Sooner we get a proper manager, the better.
Clive Mitchell
40 Posted 14/11/2017 at 09:41:02
If he was being that professional about it we'd have heard nothing. He's a colt, he needs to knuckle down, improve and be quiet. Given what a poor side we've been, who can't afford lightweights, Lookman wins a place on the pitch, probably from the bench, ahead of this lad.
William Cartwright
41 Posted 14/11/2017 at 14:38:06
The responses in the debate show there is 2 sides to the issue. 1) Vlasic is not in the squad because of injury or 2) negative bias against him.

I am a big fan of Unsy, but this issue causes some concern. It shows he is either capable of negative bias which seems unlikely but not impossible, or possibly worse, he is being influenced by BK and or Walsh in his team selections. No-one wins in this, least of all Vlasic, who according to the majority of ToffeeWebbers has been possibly our best outfield player this season.

Over to you Unsy, review your conscience on this and do the right thing.

Oliver Molloy
42 Posted 14/11/2017 at 15:27:07
Arild @36

Vlasic came on with 7 minutes remaining in the second half and Croatia were 4 - 1 up - the contest done and dusted so to speak.

How you can tell he was unfit in 7 minutes is beyond me , he was never going to bust his bollocks when the match was over was he?

Rob Dolby
43 Posted 20/11/2017 at 10:20:20
Vlasic played a full game for the U23s on Saturday night. He was played at left midfield and looked okay on the ball but didn't break sweat when off the ball.

To me, the lad needs to be around the first-team squad. He is a Number 10 similar to a lot of others that we have. He is a victim of the transfer strategy or lack of over the summer. Why we needed to pile up Number 10s is beyond me and in my opinion gross misconduct on behalf of Walsh and Koeman.

I wouldn't be surprised if he joins Mustaphi, Materazzi and Dier as someone who leaves us and goes on to prove himself a star player elsewhere.

John Smith
44 Posted 26/11/2017 at 08:00:44
I think Unsy is rebuilding Lennon's confidence.

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