Digne close to Everton move

Friday, 27 July, 2018 184comments  |  Jump to last
Updated Everton are reportedly closing in on a deal with Barcelona for Lucas Digne while talks continue over Yerry Mina.

An earlier claim by RMC in France, who suggested that Juventus might also be eyeing the Frenchman should Alex Sandro leave, had it that an offer of between €18m and €22m had been lodged for Digne but reports in Spain, together with Jason Burt of the The Telegraph, now say that negotiations have been concluded favourably.

Alan Meyers of Sky Sports and Dominic King of the Daily Mail, however, caution that nothing has yet been confirmed but there is no secret of Everton's interest in the 25-year-old. They suggest things could be wrapped up by Monday.

Everton want to bring Digne in as a long-term replacement for Leighton Baines and while Barcelona left the decision up to the player, he appears to have made the decision to make the switch to Merseyside. The final fee is expected to be lower than one quoted by RMC, possibly closer to £13m.

He is currently with the Barça squad on their pre-season tour in the United States and will, presumably, fly to England for a medical this weekend if the talks are finalised. According to Mundo Deportivo, he has already said his goodbyes to his Blaugrana team-mates.

Meanwhile, the Blues hierarchy are continuing to discuss a deal for Mina, with some outlets claiming an offer of £27m has been tabled.

Those negotiations are said to be further away from being concluded, with rival clubs also pushing to land the Colombian defender.


Reader Comments (184)

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Minik Hansen
1 Posted 27/07/2018 at 16:54:04
I have faith in Baines, as long as he is fit, it seems he will have a good relationship with Richarlison on the pitch at least.

That said, we need a replacement for the future (Robinson?), as a backup for Baines this season or an immediate replacement, where Baines is a backup.

Not all doom and gloom just yet at the left-back position. Centre-back position is a serious concern though.

Jim Bennings
2 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:05:03

Baines was fabulous in his pomp but the word “was” being absolute key in that sentence.

He is 34 in December and he just can’t get up and down the flank anymore like he did between 2008-2014.

He had an almost telepathic understanding with Pienaar, a partnership and combination of the like we haven’t seen anywhere in the pitch at Everton since.

But the Baines of today is not the Baines of 2008-2014 so sad as it is to take.

Lucas Digne may or may not be the answer but asking or expecting Baines to produce the goods on a weekly basis next season (much like last term he missed much of) is not only foolish but unfair on Baines.

Mark Tanton
3 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:09:39
Baines has been a wonderful player and servant to Everton. Like Boxer, though, it's time for the glue factory. Or are we going to allow him to do a ‘Tim Howard', increasingly shit and embarrassing?

I was watching Premier League years from 13-14 the other day – Howard's keeping was total behind-the-settee embarrassing. That's where sentimentality gets you in football.

Steavey Buckley
5 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:10:59
The undoing of Koeman last season was partly down to not replacing the left side of the defence... which he completely ignored and overlooked. So, if Silva does not want to get himself sacked, he has to replace Jagielka, Baines and Williams with players who are strong and can keep pace with players as fast as greyhounds.
Jim Bennings
6 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:12:52

We do the same with many long-serving players, sentiment gets in the way of better judgement and basically the player becomes a bit pathetic and a figure of abuse from certain sections (Tim Howard, Kevin Campbell, to an extent Duncan Ferguson).

Don't do the same with Baines.

Alan J Thompson
7 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:17:17
Barca are touring USA, so who did Brands fly to Spain to speak with or is the conference link as good as the on-line friendly broadcast.
Tony Twist
8 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:20:46
Doing the same mistakes as last year, taking far to long getting players in.

I wouldn't rely on Baines, he hasn't got it in the tank anymore and I wouldn't be surprised if he struggles with niggly injuries this season.

Denis Richardson
9 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:21:03
Jagielka, Williams, Baines – combined age of over 100 and frighteningly still 'key' to our back line.

All good things come to an end and our defence needs a complete overhaul.

Tony Twist
10 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:24:16
Isn't Bryan available? Worth a try it only in the end being second choice. What is our DOF doing?
Fran Mitchell
12 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:36:47
Baines is finished as a first team player. Ambitious teams don't keep playing because they used to be great – even Iniesta, arguably the best midfielder of my lifetime admitted he's past his best and thus should no longer play for Barça.

Baines should do the same. Act as back-up, act as a role model and mentor, but first team player? Only if we accept mid-table as the height of our ambitions.

Paul Tran
13 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:42:47
We need a new left back. We need to stop pretending that players who have been good servants are going to get better.

I hope we land Digne.

Tom Bowers
14 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:45:49
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realise that players like Bainsey and Jagielka won't last forever. They have been great players but, alas, age begins to catch up and that extra zip can be so decisive on defence.

Bainsey of course as an attacker has been great but I think his defensive side has waned and it's time for new blood. Let's hope this Digne lad is the answer if he's keen on the move.

Minik Hansen
15 Posted 27/07/2018 at 17:57:20
I'm taking it all in. I understand Baines isn't getting younger. Who covered for him last season? Williams, Keane and Sigurdsson or whoever that was misplaced on the left side of the midfield? That was awful.

Richarlison is running back and forth on the left if we're looking at the Blackburn game, that is really good on Baines if they can work it out together perfectly balanced in the most games to come – along with a new reliable centre-back to help Baines. Hence centre-back is my main concern, to cover for Baines, if we are going to rely on Robinson and focusing on strengthening other areas.

Of course I want Digne or any other decent left-back, any time, any day... so Baines can be a backup, if we are able to do that. There's lots of work to do, though, before the Premier League window closes for incoming players.

Paul Ellam
16 Posted 27/07/2018 at 18:40:29
I wish Everton would just get transfers done! I mean, I know they're never straight-forward but it seems every transfer we do takes an age. It drags and drags. And by dragging on what normally happens is other clubs get interested and nick in.

Both Digne and Mina have been targets since the day the World Cup finished. Both still remain targets... Just pay the asking price and bag the player!

Christy Ring
17 Posted 27/07/2018 at 18:49:38
Baines was a great servant, but past his best, we're 2 years now looking for a left back, totally ridiculous. Digne needs to be signed now; I would prefer Tierney myself.
Pat Kelly
18 Posted 27/07/2018 at 18:55:15
Two weeks to go and we're struggling to get players in. I can't see a bus load arriving in the next fortnight. At least we won't need time to gel.
Jim Bennings
19 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:10:56
Apparently Digne is “mulling over” a move to Everton, which is never a good sign.

I can't really see the Mina deal coming off as there seems to be a reason why no progress has been made after it became clear our interest in the player many weeks ago.

I can see Mina off to Man Utd or Lyon and another kick in the teeth to us.

Denver Daniels
20 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:26:19
I hope we have a Plan B as, the longer this drags on, the less likely we'll see either Digne or Mina here.

Clearly we are not a very attractive option despite being able to pay high wages. I hope the Vida talk is just his agent talking shite.

Mike Gaynes
21 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:30:53
No, Baines isn't "finished" or ready for the "glue factory" or any of that crapola. He's still got plenty left in the tank. What he also has, however, is much greater susceptibility to injury. So yes, I think Digne would be a great get.

Paul (#15), we have met the asking price. It's up to the player himself. And if Juve are in for him, I can understand his wanting to wait on any decision. At Juve he gets to play Champions League footy with Cristiano Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala. With us he gets to play away matches at scenic Burnley and pass to Cenk Tosun. I'd weigh that choice too if I were him.

Christy (#16), Digne was a World Cup starter for France at age 20, has acquitted himself very well (when he's had the chance) for the best club in the world, and costs a lot less than Tierney would. Plus Tierney has made it clear he has no interest in any side that isn't playing Champions League football. So why do you prefer Tierney?

Sam Hoare
22 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:35:01
Bournemouth just bought a pretty decent left-back for £11M.

I'd prefer Laxalt or Tierney to Digne myself but the Frenchman looks solid enough if unspectacular going forwards.

I've a feeling neither Digne or Mina will be coming.

Ben Challenor
23 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:49:43
I'd be so happy if he and Mina sign!
Bobby Thomas
24 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:51:59
Mike (#20),

By any stretch of the imagination, Bainsey does not have "plenty left in the tank".

This will be his last season in the top flight, and rightly so. Much like Rooney last season, if he is playing every week, I expect Baines to start brightly due to fitness and freshness before gradually dipping as a long season kicks in.

He should be second choice this season, as this whole thing should have been boxed off last summer. A new left-back should have been bedded in last season, splitting the role with Baines with all the extra games, before taking over from him full-time this season.

Phil Davis
25 Posted 27/07/2018 at 19:52:39
I have zero confidence in Silva; I predict a worse season than the last outing. Laughing stock yet again!
Ray Robinson
26 Posted 27/07/2018 at 20:13:25
I agree that Baines and Jags are potentially running on empty but what concerns me is that they (together with Coleman) were responsible for turning us around last season and arguably are the last remaining "heartbeat" of Everton – players who hold the club dearly (yes, I understand the team was like a lifeless corpse at Blackburn but you might get my drift).

Yes, there's no room for sentiment; yes, they will require replacing but I'd phase them out rather than boot them out. As long as I've supported Everton, there has been one or two players who have "got" the club and understood what it meant to the fans: Gabriel, Harvey, Kendall, Ball, Labone, Royle, West, Southall, Lyons, Ratcliffe, Cahill, Stuart, Parkinson, Unsworth etc etc.

I genuinely fear a new era when we have a team full of highly praised mercenaries who couldn't give a monkey's about the club. It's seemingly heading that way now – even with the old guard.

Derek Knox
27 Posted 27/07/2018 at 20:29:29
I just hope Digne didn't by Transmission error (there were enough of them) watch any of the game against Blackburn, or we won't be seeing him at any time in the future.

I did say on another post that I felt we may get Digne but not Mina; now it looks we won't get either, so then it may be panic buys in the last few days.

Darren Murphy
28 Posted 27/07/2018 at 20:30:37
Get him in, ffs, and bring Merry Christmas with ya. Tired defence, so sort it. Hurry up, not long now. Done yet? Why not? Shite transfer management. Is he here yet? Why not? Shit team etc.

Hopefully we do sign a few players. left-back, left-sided centre-back, creative midfiedler pulling the strings, and a pacey-as-fuck striker.

You never know. I know what my money's on.

Paul Birmingham
29 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:38:18
A must need for our zimmer-frame back line, Coleman and the like of Holgate etc. Jagielka, Baines, have been great servants, but you can't win games on guts and valour alone. These are deffo must-needs if we are to have a chance of mid-table this season: proven centre-backs, a left-back, and a creative central-midfielder, a la Arteta, and a 20 goals minimum centre-forward, plus a goalkeeper.

I'm being realistic, but it seems fate and whatever the Universe and the EFC board, contrives, makes life for Evertonians increasingly challenging, arguably more now than ever.

Let's hope that a team turns up tomorrow at the field in Rennes. Small mercies... but the tempo on this pre-season seems to be fading fast.

Let's get behind the club, as now they need the fans more than ever. We are all entitled to our views, but the blood runs Blue for Everton.

Paul Birmingham
30 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:48:49
Apologies, the text on 5ge tablet runs itself. I meant with exception to Hogate, Coleman, etc and their generation we basically need a back 4, as there is also no decent back up for Coleman except Kenny, and Holgate could still do a job at centre-back, but I believe he needs coaching into being a centre-back, rather than stand-in right-back.

He's decent on the ball.

Yep it's very frustrating times, I'm sure all will agree.

Beat Wolves, well that could be a decent day, but as it stands, I see us freezing on the pitch and them take the piss out of our team.

Bets on Walcott playing...?

John Hammond
31 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:49:27
Whatever happens, let's hope this guy isn't the only one we have our eye on. Remember, Giroud was in the building and we didn't get him!
Minik Hansen
32 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:52:46
Derek (#23), the Blackburn game just shows how Everton need a real backup to the current best starting eleven. These pre-season games are a mess, as there are so much changing in the squad; hopefully in the next few games it will be less changing and focusing on the best eleven. That way, we might have a bigger chance to attract the right players.
Paul Birmingham
33 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:54:33
John @30, good point. It's EFC, and alas, Groundhog Day...
Bill Gienapp
34 Posted 27/07/2018 at 21:58:23
All over Twitter that Digne’s a done deal... for what that’s worth.
Darren Murphy
35 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:00:26
Twitter aka twatter, following people?! Legit stalking people lol. I'm 41 but fuck off.
Sam Hoare
36 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:08:21
Seems like this one might be happening. £12.9M plus add-ons. Not sure he'd have been my first choice but decent value at that price and better than what we have.

He's quick but not rapid, better defensively than going forwards but still decent on the ball. He's also played left-side centre-back on a few occasions which could be relevant if Silva ever fancied a back 3.

Gavin Johnson
37 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:08:39
I've seen a report that the fee is £12.9M. If so, it's what we've just received on Klaassen, in which case, that's decent business.
Chris Clark
38 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:23:14
Where does this leave Martina?
Mark Pringle
39 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:25:09
I'm with you Christy, I would've loved for us to have signed Tierney because of how good an attacking full-back he is but, as Mike states, looks like he wants to stay at Celtic and fee almost double that of Digne's.

Plus, to sign for Barca and be a full French international, this lad must have something. No shame in being kept out of a team by Jordi Alba.

Have to agree, reluctantly, that Baines is done in terms of being top level. He will still do a decent job as cover (certainly better than Robinson who is far from ready) and will benefit from being rested, maybe able to show some of the old sparkle now and again.

Let's hope we get this deal through!!

Tommy Carter
40 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:35:58
Leighton Baines is the greatest ever Everton left back. Of that there is no doubt.

A tremendous player. But a player, like some others who Moyes kind of stumbles upon. We signed Baines in 2007, yet throughout the season he was then second choice to Joleon Lescott and then even more inexplicably, Nuno Valente.

The Moyesiah didn’t seem to trust Baines at all and in the summer of 2008 he was linked with a move to Middlesbrough.

Baines eventually made the left back spot his own and was simply phenomenal throughout 2009 - 2014. His manoeuvre to that position was much Like the series of events that forced Moyes into:

Playing Coleman as a right back and not a right winger

Playing Lescott as a centre back and not a left back

Playing Jagielka as a Centre back and not a defensive central midfield player

Playing Arteta as a central midfielder and not a right winger

Playing Fellaini as an attacking midfielder and not a holding midfielder

Moyes often has the ingredients but it sometimes took him a while to work it out

Peter Roberts
41 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:47:22

Leighton may be a great Everton left-back but to call him the best ever does a great disservice to the likes of Ray Wilson and Pat van den Hauwe, both of whom won league titles with us.

If the fee quoted is correct, then an exchange of Klaassen for Digne is excellent business. Trim the fat in one area where there's excess and strengthen in a position of need.

Colin Gee
42 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:49:33
Tommy (#40),
Best Everton left back? Pat Van den Hauwe would like a word...
Bill Gienapp
43 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:53:39
"Where does this leave Martina?"

He's our new starting striker.

Andrew Ellams
44 Posted 27/07/2018 at 22:58:48
Sky Sports News claiming Fulham, Burnley and West Ham are all in talks over a £20million deal for Alfie Mawson. Would him and Mina make a good partnership?
Nathan Ford
45 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:06:46
Baines at the moment is playing within himself more scared of injuries than playing his normal game. It's a mental block as the left-back role requires huge running distances and sprints and he's worried he'll get injured. Digne will put pressure on him to perform; if he doesn't, he's replaced – simple as that.

I can remember Martinez in the past talking about moving Baines to a midfield position like Bayern did with Lahm. How about Baines stepping in as a defensive midfielder? He's got the legs over 10 or 15 yards; he's not got the stamina for a full season at left-back.

He's intelligent enough to play the position can tackle has decent acceleration and we could get rid of Schneiderlin at the same time. That way, we can keep Robinson in the squad and give him some playing time as well.

Peter Morris
46 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:07:17
Looks like Mina thinks he is too good for us... and, on the evidence of pre-season so far, he might be right!
Alan McGuffog
47 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:09:42
There is only one Everton left-back. Ramon, please shine down on us!
Phil Bellis
48 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:14:54
Gentleman, Yorkshireman, Englishman, Evertonian... the best ever!
Gaute Lie
49 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:16:25
The way Bradley Dack muscled his way through Everton defence several times was disastrous. It looked like our players are afraid of physical players, they back off.

It sure made Bradley Dack look like a star. Either he is, and we should buy him, or our defence really is crap.

I hope we buy Bradley Dack. Or else, I fear we will have a tough time defending poorly this coming season.

Phil Bellis
51 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:19:32
Gaute Lie... Greetings, and Google 'Bernie Wright'.
Gordon White
52 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:25:09
If you think Digne or even Digne and Mina are the answer, I'm afraid your sadly mistaken. We need 3 or 4, not 2. Let's be honest.

And the youngsters. They need to be brought on, not chucked in at the deep end alongside has-beens. Get real.

Stewart Lowe
53 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:41:45
Digne looks a quality player and already at the right age too. He is fast, technically gifted and plays on the front foot. He also loves a tackle, and can see Digne and Richarlison working that left side brilliantly. To go from Cuco Martina and Bolasie, to Digne and Richarlison, we suddenly have a balanced side and tons of pace.

It's his first transfer window and I think he is going to need 4 to turf out the rubbish we have and keep bringing in the quality of his first two signings. If he could just add a Steven Nzonzi in place of Schneiderlin, and quality centre-back, I'd be delighted with that.

Don Alexander
54 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:44:32
Regarding the greatest-ever of our left-backs, Big Joe is on record saying Pat van den Hauwe is the one for him. Personally, I think our Leighton is third on the podium.
Mike Gaynes
55 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:48:44
Nathan Ford (#45),

I guess you haven't seen any of the pre-season games? When Baines has been dashing into the opposing penalty area on a regular basis to make passes and try for shots. Scared? Bollocks.

Digne will take games at left-back anytime we go to a back 3, and compete with Baines in the back 4 alignment.

Mike Gaynes
56 Posted 27/07/2018 at 23:56:43
Don, Pat played in an entirely different world for a left-back. He was a pure defender in an era when that's what an left-back did. Today's left-back plays a critical role in attack, and obviously Baines has been one of the very best at it. So I don't even know how you'd compare the two.

I never saw Ray Wilson play... but from what I learned about him from the David France and James Corbett books, he was very special.

I would point out that Baines has played nearly three times as many games for Everton as Wilson or Van den Hauwe, and that alone would make him a worthy contender.

Brent Stephens
57 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:04:05
Mike (#56), yes, I've been to the pre-season friendlies. No guarantee of the future, but Baines in these games has shown the old Baines, the Baines that was coached out of him?

I also like what I've seen of Robinson at left-back, allowing for the fact that he's really new to first XI football. High hopes.

Mike Gaynes
58 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:11:19
Brent, I'd love to blame Koeman and Fat Sam for everything, but Baines's problem last season was injuries.

He sprained an ankle in preseason and then had that serious calf injury in November. He was out three months, and to me he never looked right after coming back in February. I think he's scooting around in the preseason games just because he's finally on two good legs.

As an in-person eyewitness, who else has impressed you? Anybody?

Paul Birmingham
59 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:16:48
Leighton Baines with Steven Pienaar were poetry in motion. Nothing touched them then, nor since; they took the piss, home and away.

Sadly, along with The Best Liittle Spaniard we know, who left, they have never been replaced. Nor has Tim Cahill, was it fate, chance or accident? That we had these gems all playing in the same team. Why haven't we replaced them, effectively?

The club is, regardless of our views, at the most critical turning point. You can point a horse to water, but a pencil must be lead.

EFC, it's now; now is the time. Please deliver, in our life time, some genuine success and belief and hope.

David Barks
60 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:28:35
Baines has not been the Baines of old for a few years now, not just last year. His set pieces had been poor since the original bad injury to his foot. Ever since then he hasn’t had the turn of pace he once had and has been much less effective as an attacking force down the left wing.

Now he mostly receives the ball, stops, looks forward as if he wants to play a ball forward but inevitably plays the ball backward. He’s just not the left back we need, he’s older now and the mileage combined with injury have taken their tole. We need someone new.

Terry White
61 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:38:44
Peter (#41), just to put the record straight, Ray Wilson was not a part of our league winning teams in 1963 or 1970. He was a member of the 1966 cup winning team.

Ray was the best left back I saw playing for Everton back through mid 1950. He arrived at Goodison later in his career and was also subject to missing time because of injury which shortened his career.

Mike's comment (#56) regarding the number of games played, I would suggest, is irrelevant when comparing player abilities. Baines has been a good player for Everton. So was Van den Hauwe. So was Keith Newton. But Ray Wilson was simply the best.

Jim Jennings
62 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:40:29
“I would point out that Baines has played nearly three times as many games for Everton as Wilson or Van den Hauwe, and that alone would make him a worthy contender.”

Does that mean Hibbo is a worthy contender to be our greatest ever right back?

Don Alexander
63 Posted 28/07/2018 at 00:44:30
Mike (#56), I didn't realise Leighton Baines had played so many more games. That said, I'm old enough to have seen Ray Wilson more than a few times and he was a wonderful defender (sadly though his two biggest goofs were the in both Wembley finals in '66, and televised for all eternity to see). Pat van den Hauwe was of the same hue to me, a guy you could bet your house on as a defender first and foremost.

Baines these days seems to have lost some of his defensive qualities; with age and injury, it ain't necessarily his fault. In my view, he was behind the other two in that department beforehand anyway. Now it seems he's unable to add much going forward but hopefully, if he's now fully fit, we'll see a bit more of him in that role.

As far as I'm concerned another left-back who, like Baines, wasn't the greatest in defence but was more than worth his place because of his ability in attack, was Andy Hinchcliffe.

Mike Gaynes
64 Posted 28/07/2018 at 01:03:52
Great shout, Don. I loved Hinchcliffe. Could really rip a free kick and I think he's the best Blue I ever saw on corners. And once or twice a game he would just storm down the pitch in attack, demanding the ball. If he hadn't blown out that knee... damn.

But I gotta disagree with you on Baines's defensive ability. No earthshaking tackles or towering headers, but positionally flawless, great anticipation in front of goal, and for many years an excellent ball-winner. His sole weakness in my eyes has always been failing to pressure crosses.

Franny Porter
65 Posted 28/07/2018 at 01:08:29
I'm past wanting Migna, we shouldn't have to beg. I'd rather have Gibson who most probably would be honoured.

South American and African footballers quite often form bad delusions of grandeur. Fuck him off if he's not interested.

Christy Ring
66 Posted 28/07/2018 at 01:15:33
Always a fan of Baines but, in the last couple of years, he was mediocre; he never closed down the winger for a cross. Pienaar was his saviour because he always covered him.
Julian Wait
67 Posted 28/07/2018 at 03:38:35
Seconding Mike (#64), I'd add that another slight weakness in Baines is his height. Not much he can do about that... but overall, an amazing left-back.
Steven Jones
68 Posted 28/07/2018 at 03:56:45
People talk about times played and titles etc. The key thing for me with Baines is his talent going forward, his crossing, his assists, his free kicks, his penalties . I got the tail end of Ray – simply a Rolls-Royce of a player; Pat was the best defender as a fullback and Leighton the best going forward and linking up.

My vote is Baines – and what I have seen close up during pre-season matches in Faro and the like, he is looking fit, sharp and his passing is great. Questions remain about season-long endurance and we need two really good full-backs to choose from.

Gavin Johnson
69 Posted 28/07/2018 at 03:58:50
Franny Porter – you sound like the director who got the sack from West Ham last season. He more or less said the same thing – African players should be avoided because of their attitude. Just a little bit of racial generalising there...

On the subject of getting Gibson, the only attraction I see is that we might be able to offload Besic and Williams in the deal. I've spoken to a couple of Boro fans and they say Gibson is overrated.

If we have to go British, surely Lascelles and Mawson are better options?? Swansea would likely take Williams in a deal too.

Steven Jones
70 Posted 28/07/2018 at 03:58:58
Mike (#64). I actually have Davy Thomas as the best corner taker. He could pick someone out and could bend and hit it flat as well. What delivery from dead balls or on the move — the best I have seen. Ask Bob Latchford. :-)
Don Alexander
71 Posted 28/07/2018 at 04:11:57
Mike, you're very persuasive! Maybe I'll elevate Bainesy to joint second on the podium! He's been a gem after all. Good on yer!

And Steve (#70), Dave Thomas was 100% magnificent in that season in particular, and no slouch in all the others either.

David Ellis
72 Posted 28/07/2018 at 04:19:50
Don (#63) – actually I think Pat van den Hauwe was excellent in attack, perhaps not as good at crossing, but had some skill and a great give and go. I remember him rescuing a pass in the box that was just behind him by doing some kind of heel flick.

Hinchcliffe was in comparison a bit of a one-trick pony –crossing/corner delivery. At which he was very very good.

I never saw Wilson play but I would put Psychco Pat as the best left-back I've seen in a blue shirt with Baines second and Pejic third.

But it's time to replace Baines, I think. He's decent but we probably need better than he can give now, and it's only going to go one way from now on.

Mike Gaynes
73 Posted 28/07/2018 at 04:59:17
Steven (#70), cheers... Thomas and Latchford were before my time, but I'm always eager to hear the history I missed.
Andy Codling
74 Posted 28/07/2018 at 05:00:57
Gavin Johnson – agreed on Gibson. All the guys I work with are diehard Boro and they are happy for Gibson to move on as they think they have better options in that position.
Jerome Shields
75 Posted 28/07/2018 at 06:25:26
Digne would be a good addition. If signed, he should be first choice for his position. Even better if Mina is signed, since he has experience playing with him, and therefore a good understanding. We need another centre-back to really cement in the necessary changes in the defence. Clearly, Brands and Silva have rightly identified defence as a weakness.
Jerome Shields
76 Posted 28/07/2018 at 06:32:39
I think Williams as a part exchange in a Tierney transfer deal would be good creative thinking. Williams may have the pace for the Scottish Premier League, though I doubt he would become a folk hero.
Derek Knox
77 Posted 28/07/2018 at 06:49:19
Andy, yes I hope too that we give Gibson the widest berth possible, he just doesn't possess anything, from what I have witnessed, that would benefit us.

As I have said many times, I fail to understand why Alfie Mawson has never come into the equation.

He has proved to be an excellent commanding presence in the Swansea defence. Okay the Swans got relegated, but you can't say it was down to him, so did Sunderland and we are so proud of Pickford.

Anthony Hawkins
78 Posted 28/07/2018 at 07:38:57
Baines has needed replacing for the last few seasons. He's been one of our best players but now in significant decline.

Regarding Gibson, he should never be an option for us. Neither should Smalling or Jones for that matter. There are much better options out there.

Frank Mullin
80 Posted 28/07/2018 at 08:24:25
As an 8-year-old back in the '60s, being taught some basic French at that fine academic institution of St Mary's College in Crosby, correct pronunciation was drummed into me as being key to learning the beauty of the French language.

The names of the teachers who taught me have become a blur over time (maybe some ToffeeWebbers in the know could help me out there?)

Some, but not much, of it has stuck with me over the intervening 55 years or so (it's a pity the same can't be said of my command of English) and this Lucas Digne chappy's surname pronunciation is, I believe, very close to.... Dean!

This got me thinking, if indeed he does sign on the dotted line, what on earth do we call him? Now, I do vaguely recall some half decent journeyman called Dean playing for us in the distant past, must be around 90 years ago now, but I'm having immense difficulty, due to the aforementioned mists of time, recalling his moniker.

So I thought maybe we could call this lad Lucas something like Deano or Lukey or maybe Digger, but none of these have a ring to it or really seem to fit. Again, maybe any ToffeeWebbers with ideas could put them forward.

Wait a minute, and this is very left-field, what about something totally off the wall, like ... Dixie!!

I can envisage the crowd in future maybe shouting something on the lines of "Give the ball to Dixie" on a regular basis.

Then again, having given it further thought, I think it's such a bad idea.

Dixie? Nah, it'll never catch on.

Lukey it is then.

Bobby Thomas
81 Posted 28/07/2018 at 08:50:30
On the Ray Wilson, Pat van den Hauwe, Leighton Baines thing... well, I can't speak about Ray Wilson as I didn't see him play.

As for Pat van den Hauwe, he was very much a centre-back that was playing left-back. He was 6'-1" wasn't he? There is no way he would even be a left-back in today's game, with the full-backs booming forward and wide midfielders increasingly being converted to the position. He would be a centre-back all day long, and be very useful as he would be able to play right or left in a three.

Height affected another player for me: Tony Hibbert. I reckon the only reason Hibbert played full-back was because of his height. He was a centre-back all day long, as far as I'm concerned, an out-and-out defender. It's the reason he looked so comfortable on the odd occasions he dropped into emergency centre-back.

There was no way he could play the position full-time because he was about 5'-8". So he had to adapt, play full-back and try to develop his "attacking" play.

Joe McMahon
82 Posted 28/07/2018 at 08:57:04
Baines needed to be moved on at least 4 years ago. He is responsible for so many conceded goals over the last few years.

But it's embarrassing as a Premier League club that sentiment about too many players in the Kenwright era. Sir Alex Ferguson knew when to move players on, and that's the attitude that makes you a winner!

Peter Roberts
83 Posted 28/07/2018 at 09:00:04
Terry (#61),

I stand corrected, I knew Wilson arrived after '63 but thought he was still around in '70. Who was the left-back then? (I was born two weeks after Rotterdam so have only history videos and my Dad's knowledge to go off...)

Dave Abrahams
84 Posted 28/07/2018 at 09:21:30
Gordon (#52), very good post, all the young lads who played for Everton last season were thrown into the fray with no guidance or help from the senior players. These lads needed coaxing through games but had to try and find their way in a very poor team. They might be better for the experience but it was very hard work for them when they needed helping through their baptism in a very hard physical league.
Stephen Brown
85 Posted 28/07/2018 at 09:34:22
Derek (#77) a decent shout re Mawson and I'm sure Swansea could be persuaded to take Ashley Williams into the deal?!
Peter Mills
86 Posted 28/07/2018 at 09:39:12
Peter (#83), we struggled for quite a while at left-back after Ramon left.

Sandy Brown filled the breach for much of the 68-69 season, and the first half of the Championship 69-70 season, during which we signed Keith Newton round about Christmas. Keith took the left -back role, was a good player, but to my mind was more comfortable on the right. He was injured later in the season and Sandy came back, very competently, for the run-in.

Keith was injured during the 1970 World Cup (Tommy Wright got done in the same game), and struggled thereafter.

The position was unsettled for a few years after that. Henry Newton came as a midfielder but moved to left-back for a while, Archie Styles and Steve Sargent both looked promising but never quite made it, I think Dave Clements may even have filled in, then Tiger McLoughlin was signed and he was not outstanding.

Some good and bad memories among that lot!

Jeff Armstrong
87 Posted 28/07/2018 at 09:40:44
Bobby (#81), correct about Van den Hauwe being a centre-back those days; he played there for Wales and did a good job. He was bought as a right-back from a Brum but Kendall converted him to the left side, so even more kudos to him for being in the top 3 all-time left-backs as he was predominantly right-footed.
Denis Richardson
88 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:00:24
If £12.9m is the final price that seems like great value in this market, averages out the overpayment on Richarlison a bit at least. Hopefully we get this and Mina over the line ASAP and focus on a creative mid as well.

Bit worried by the lack of British and Irish players given all new signings seem to be non-English speaking. Nothing xenophobic here – just a core of English speaking senior players is key imo for dressing room and 'getting' the club. (Unless you're Man City or Chelsea and can buy whoever you want.)

Shane Corcoran
89 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:00:54
For those wondering why we're always so slow with transfers (we're not btw) it's because we're a mid-table club with no European football.

Add to that, regardless of your opinion of Silva, our manager was sacked by his last club in his first season and brought his previous club down.

Add to that, we have only Pickford who the likes of Digne is likely to have heard of.

It's obviously not that black and white but, to a defender at Barcelona, it might well look that way.

Ash Moore
90 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:20:50
Reports it's a done deal. Hope he's the business!
Brent Stephens
91 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:23:21
Mike (#58), I've just seen your post. I'm cautiously excited about your guy, Robinson. I know some posters don't see anything in him but, given that he's not played in the Premier League for us yet. I like his confidence, he's keen to get down the wing and support, and looks quite quick. One I wouldn't want to lose.
Brent Stephens
92 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:25:55
David (#60) "Now [Baines] mostly receives the ball, stops, looks forward as if he wants to play a ball forward but inevitably plays the ball backward."

He's looked his old self in the pre-season stuff, David. We might get another very decent season out of him. I think he's nailed on to be first pick at left-back.

Stephen McNally
93 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:27:46
Social media has ramped up the intensity/scrutiny of all things football in recent years and, seems to be increasing fans anxiety.

Patience is needed, to allow Brands and Silva to make their mark; otherwise, the only other option, is to sack and re-appoint. Would this really help Everton short to medium term? A revolving door will lead to one thing... certain relegation and a club with no identity.

Steve Ferns
94 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:30:06
Bobby Thomas, would you be surprised that Hibbert played right-wing for us the last time we won the FA Youth Cup? He was always on the right of midfield as a youth before dropping to right-back not long before he got into the senior side.

I don't think he was a small centre-half. I think he was just an old-fashioned fullback. For me, and I'm biased toward Hibbert so I definitely have blue tinted specs on and set to max, he was defensively brilliant.

Of all the players who played in his era, who would you rather have to defend when Cristiano Ronaldo was running at you. One on one, Hibbert was superb. He rarely got skinned by the winger, and I recall many superb performances where he defended Cristiano and the like and well and truly had him in his pocket.

Of course once he crossed the half way line it was the opposite story. His crossing was very poor. He couldn't beat a man. He was not a modern day fullback.

Defensively though, I think he was superb. I often wondered why England didn't make use of him for those games when we play like Moyes's Everton and are under the cosh and have to defend all game. Surely it was better to have Hibbo doing what he does best rather than Glen Johnson trying to do what he can't and defend.

Michael Lynch
95 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:46:57
Rojo is available. Left-sided defender has played left-back and left side of central defence. And his wife is a lingerie model. What's not to like?
Hugh Jenkins
96 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:54:02
Off subject, but what has happened to Martina?

He featured in a few early pre-season games but has been missing from the last few?

Is he injured, has he found a new home, or has he just been dropped from the first team squad – does anyone know?

Anthony Murphy
97 Posted 28/07/2018 at 10:59:53
With Baines still able to offer something, we just need a solid addition to provide competition. Antonee Robinson can then be introduced at a steady pace to see if he's got what it takes. I just hope we bring in a centre-half too... if not Mina, who else?
Jeff Armstrong
98 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:02:44
Anyone worrying about the £40 million we have paid for Richarlson, relax the RS value Danny Ings at £26 million!!!

The market gets crazier every window.

Dave Williams
99 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:06:04
Steve, I agree a lot of what you say about Hibbert, especially when one on one. The only time I can recall him being skinned throughout a game was the FA Cup Final against Chelsea when the hot sun seemed to affect him and Malouda gave a Man of the Match performance against him.

If Kenny turns out like Tony, we will be well served once Seamus goes.

Alan J Thompson
100 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:19:52
Ray Wilson always knew or worked out what the man facing him could do and he positioned himself to make that at least difficult if not impossible; when they tried something different, he quite simply took the ball away from them. He wasn't afraid to let the winger get a cross in but it was not what they wanted to do and had taken that long that Labby had already read what Willo was doing. He wasn't particularly quick but his positioning was par excellence.

In the day, a full-back wouldn't tackle a winger who was trying to go down the line until he got his shoulder in front of the winger's so that you not only got the ball but you turned the man. The greatest exponent of this that I ever saw was Alex Parker.

Ray Wilson wasn't great at everything, as Halle's goal in the '66 World Cup final shows, but it rarely was seen that he was poor at anything. It's what Everton have been missing in defence since Moyes left, each player understanding the limits and strengths of those with whom they play.

Alan J Thompson
102 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:28:12
Oh, and by the way, Ray Wilson started out as a left-winger.
Rob Dolby
103 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:30:35
Not sure buying Barcelona's cast-offs is such a great idea.

Mentally, the player will look at any transfer as a downward step to a lesser club. I want players who have fight and motivation to do well. In fact, I would take a less talented player with the right attitude over a world beater with the wrong mentality.

Our squad lacks players with that fighting attitude. Coleman, Pickford, Jagielka, Baines, Gueye, Niasse and McCarthy when fit. The rest only seem to want to play when the sun is on their back.

Pejic was the first left-back I watched for us, then Bailey. We have had some decent ones over the years. Van den Hauwe was rock solid with better distribution than people gave him credit for but let's face it he only had to pass it to Sheedy or Reid. Hinchcliff only really started producing the goods when we put Abblet behind him.

Baines for me has the best quality and all-round game I have seen in a blue shirt. Whoever we bring in has big boots to fill.

Brian Harrison
104 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:45:06
I am sure a lot of clubs will be very busy in the next 2 weeks, Spurs and Man Utd have done very little so far. I think with the window closing early and following a World Cup it must be very difficult to get deals done in a short space of time.

I have never seen Digne and doubt many of our fans have ever seen him, and apart from the World Cup I had never seen or heard of MIna. But if Silva and Brands have identified them then we need to get them on board.

The problem we have is most players in Europe only know the top 6 sides and that's why we have a problem persuading these players to join us. Man City had a similar problem, the difference being that they would outbid most clubs, and this sent out a message that this club had the money to progress very quickly.

While Moshiri has put us in a far healthier state, we just can't compete with the top 6 in both money and European football. Seems the order of club clubs in Europe is most players given a choice will pick Real or Barca over any other club. Then domestically the top 4 money sides will on most occasions get the players they want when buying from outside the top 4.

So for us to change this will take a long time or copious amounts of money made available. I think that's why many of our fans are hoping the Usmanov rumours are true as that would definitely be a game-changer.

Frank Crewe
105 Posted 28/07/2018 at 11:59:55
"Not sure buying Barcelona's cast-offs is such a great idea."

This has to be the daftest statement I have ever seen on this site. Obviously any player who isn't good for 25 times La Liga winners, 30 times Copa Del Rey Winners, 5 times Champions League winners, 4 times Uefa Cup Winners, will never be good enough for Everton. Especially considering that both Digne and Mina are currently named in Barcelona's first team 25.

If we shouldn't buy players from Barcelona who the fuck should we buy them from? ... Watford? ... Oh, wait.

Tony Twist
106 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:05:22
I think we are at the mercy of injuries with regards right and left backs. Coleman, class, if only we had a team of Colemans. Baines, hmmm, good but over the last four years or so not good enough and allows too many crosses to come in from that side.

The worrying thing is the stand-ins if they get injured. I only saw highlights of the Blackburn match but I was disturbed by Jonjoe Kenny and Antonee Robinson also doesn't look good enough at the moment. Yes, they are young but that I think shows up a lack of quality.

I hope Brands knows his stuff because, the way football is going, we need absolute quality coming through from the academy – either to go into the first team (and save us a fortune) or sold on at a healthy profit.

Ciarán McGlone
107 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:20:35
By my reckoning we've now spent around £300 million since Koeman arrived... and the spine of out team (centre-half, centre-midfield, No 10 and striker) is either awful or decidedly average.

Shocking mismanagement of available funds.

It's going to be a long season.

Anthony Flack
108 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:22:27
As for decent full-backs, I always thought Pistone got a hard time and was under-rated.

I recall Gidman and quite liked him but it might have been his like of fast cars and faster women...

An earlier comment refers to Silva getting Hull relegated – that is not really fair as they were utterly goosed when he arrived, he nearly saved them but faded away at the end.

As for this guy, I have not seen him – is he any good playing advanced ahead of a back 3?

I have always thought Baines struggled with a back 3 and was never quite as effective starting from an advanced position as he was from the traditional left-back position.

Dave Evans
109 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:38:33
Frank (#105), Thanks for the laugh after the Saturday morning madhouse shop.
Gordon White
110 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:40:39
What's holding Mina up? Sounds like he thinks he's better than us. He might end up here. But will he be another Lukaku?

No matter how good they are, it's a mistake to buy players that are not that bothered. They treat us like a shop window. I hate it.

Martin Berry
111 Posted 28/07/2018 at 12:42:10
It's my opinion that this lad will be a class act and I think the faithful will be saying "class" when Digne's name comes up in conversation.
Stephen Davies
112 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:14:36
Gordon (#110),

What's holding this up?

Man Utd being interested, I would guess...

John Daley
113 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:40:07
I wouldn't just point to unavoidable influences, such as injuries/aging, being to blame for the dwindling effectiveness of Baines over recent years. Rank bad management has also had a massive part to play, with the need for him to have a reliable partner out on the left, to link up and interchange with consistently, seemingly of little to no concern to those in charge of team affairs.

Since Pienaar exited the stage, Baines has been expected just to crack on exactly as before, despite being thoroughly hamstrung by a host of ill-suited, "you'll do", 'playing left mid must be an absolute piece of piss so any old meff should be able to manage it', stop-gaps, incapable of even wandering temporarily onto the same wavelength as probably the most productive Everton player of the Premier League era, slotting uncomfortably into the position directly in front of him.

There are sexually transmitted diseases that can make your cock like Kermit The Frog but, just because you've come over a bit green down there recently, doesn't mean you have defo caught it. It might just be that someone shoved a useless fucking Muppet directly in front of you as you were trying to thrust forward.

As for Digne, he appears an extremely disciplined player, more than decent in the air (a disadvantage Baines can't do anything about of course, but nevertheless, one we have suffered from since Lescott vacated the left-back slot) and has no problem getting up and down the line to offer himself as an attacking option. From what I have seen, he is more competent going forward than some are giving him credit for and, certainly, no Hibbert when crossing the half-way line.

Speaking of which, I think you may be slightly over-egging the Gandalf-like, 'no way you're getting round, lad', powers of Hibbert there, Steve (@94). If he consistently had Ronaldo "in his pocket" then a few fat arse moths must have snuck in with him as well. I think the pair started 6 games against one another (?) with Ronaldo still managing to grab 4 goals, despite being firmly contained in the full-back's keks.

Rob Dolby
114 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:40:20
Frank (#105).

My expectations are probably lower than yours. I want players who have attitude and want to wear the shirt no matter where they are from.

Buying from one of the biggest clubs in the world guarantees a level of quality it doesn't guarantee the right mentality.

Not sure how much of a contribution Digne had on Barca's trophy cabinet over the previous 100 years probably the same amount as Delafoe.

I wear the daftest comment award on here with pride knowing that the next poster will probably take it off me.

Chris Watts
115 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:43:30
I wonder why our signings always take so long. Malcom was on his was to Roma and 24 hours later had signed for Barca. Ours are always drawn out over weeks...
Chris Watts
116 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:44:35
ps: This guy had better be good. The fee seems to be near that of Tierney now who is 4 years younger and surely is going to be world class. I wish we would just give them £25m and get him in.
Derek Taylor
117 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:53:49
Just amazes me how so many Evertonians want to see the back of Baines – and then scream about loyalty, effort and determination!
Ian Bennett
118 Posted 28/07/2018 at 13:55:01
I've got to agree (#116). He's not made it at PSG, Roma or Barcelona. What's going to be his motivation at Everton?

I'd far rather take Tierney for a bigger fee, offering Vlasic in the deal. I think this another transfer mistake to follow the many before.

Steve Ferns
119 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:02:05
Derek, no Evertonian wants to see the back of Baines. What we want to avoid is the situation of last season where Baines struggled and got injured frequently and we had to watch Martina play there.

If we sign a world-class replacement and Baines has lost his place, then I'd allow him to leave because of respect for the guy. Allowing him to leave means letting him have his way. If he wants to see it his contract, fair play. Let him fight for his shirt.

With Tierney, I'd expect Baines to edge him for the jersey at the start of the season, but then Tierney to get in with injury to Baines and then to keep the jersey.

I don't know about Digne. He's obviously decent enough to be a French international and to have been bought by Barca. Either way Baines can battle him. But if he wants to leave, let him.

Dave Abrahams
120 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:06:12
Peter (86), I think you covered most of the left backs from that era, maybe Terry Darracott was another who did a decent job without making the position his own.

Tiger McLoughlin is an interesting character, I heard a story that after he was at Everton for four or five weeks, his wife finally found out where he was, she hadn't heard from him or had a penny off him until she was told he'd signed for Everton.

It might have been a load of nonsense but it made me laugh at the time.

Anthony Flack
121 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:07:38
Chris, the first couple of days delay will be the player saying ‘who' – checking it out in Football Manager.

Then he'll ask the agent "Where is Everton?"

As the agent will not have a clue, doubts will creep in – then the wages will be mentioned and he'll say "Ah Everton, very good..."

That probably accounts for about 4 days of delay, giving us lot the chance to proclaim the saviour, slag him off and find some way of blaming Martinez, Koeman and Allardyce for global warming and the price of a pint.

Gordon White
122 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:11:19
Stephen (#112). Fair comment. In which case, I'm not far off the mark, then.
Chris Gould
123 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:14:21
Ian (#118),

He was excellent at Roma and they wanted to buy him after his loan period came to an end. Barcelona stepped in and that ended their chances.

He's well thought off at Barcelona but not quite good enough or quick enough to oust Jordi Alba. No shame there.

Also, as John Daley suggested, he's a lot better getting forward than some on here are giving him credit. I think one person made a negative comment about his forward play and it caught on.

Steve Ferns
124 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:31:17
Chris (#115) you answered your own question.

Malcom interested Spurs. But the interest was not concrete. So we come in. The player sees this as a step up, so his agent encourages us, we make a bid and discuss terms.

This draws out Roma who make a similar offer, and Malcom turns us down in favour of them, but still stalls and eventually Barcelona come in and sign him.

So, to conclude. Player wants a move, we come in, player will come, but stalls to see what else is out there, because the quality we want will always believe they can do better.

This is the way of things now, and has been for some time.

Tony Everan
125 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:48:21
As much as I think Tierney is a great prospect, it has partially been against conference sized teams. Celtic have over valued him and the wage demands are astronomical for what he has so far achieved.

Digne has done well for Roma and has played for Bara, only a close second to the brilliant Jordi Alba. I think we have done good business here, and the safest bet.

David Ellis
126 Posted 28/07/2018 at 14:56:24
Dave120 - Tiger was a catastrophic full back. Darracott was better but lost us the League Cup final in 76 or 77 with a woeful back pass intercepted by Villas Brian Little ( he of the extraordinary long neck).

David Jones came in to replace Darrocott at right back and did a decent job. Had a career in management after playing

David Ellis
127 Posted 28/07/2018 at 15:04:26
One anecdote about Terry Darracott - after playing he was a social worker. Went to a clients flat in which there was an intimidating enormous dog. Terry carried on talking to the client at which point the dog lifted its leg and did the business against the sofa.
Terry could contain himself no longer and said “ for goodness sake can’t you control your dog?”
To which his client said “ oh I thought it was your dog”

Like Peter Sellers Clouseau to man with dog “ does your dog bite?” Answer “no”.
Clouseau reaches out to dog and is bitten
“I thought you said your dog does not bite!”
Answer “ That’s not my dog “

Peter Roberts
128 Posted 28/07/2018 at 15:59:32
Jeff 110

And they have the cheek to take the P out of us for paying £40m for Richardson, splashing out £67m on a keeper no better than Pickford and valuing a crock of a striker at £26m

Steve Ferns
129 Posted 28/07/2018 at 16:09:04
The Echo reports Robinson is speaking to Bolton about a loan for 12 months and his deal is to expire at the end of that so he will sign a new contract before he leaves.
Mike Gaynes
130 Posted 28/07/2018 at 16:18:42
Chris #123, I'm the one who made the comment about Digne's attacking play. He does get forward quite well, but he doesn't contribute much when he gets there... only two assists in 29 league appearances for Barca. Doesn't make bad plays, just lacks the creativity we've seen from Baines.

But he's such a brilliant defender that I don't mind. I watch every Barca game, and I love the idea of him being a Blue. First time you see him put in a tackle, get up and perfectly distribute a pass into midfield, you will love the guy. Trust me.

Mike Gaynes
131 Posted 28/07/2018 at 16:19:55
Steve #129, I'm guessing that means Silva/Brands are confident of closing the deal on Digne. I doubt they'd let Robinson go out on loan otherwise.
David Ellis
132 Posted 28/07/2018 at 16:32:18
We still have Connolly and Cuco left to cover Baines
Alan J Thompson
133 Posted 28/07/2018 at 17:14:22
So Robinson was sent out on loan to get experience and now that he's had that we send him out on loan again. And this achieving what? Perhaps a shake up is needed in more than the Boardroom.
James Flynn
135 Posted 28/07/2018 at 19:01:22
If Digne's coming, it's to play. I agree with Gaynes that Leighton looks good so far. But, as much as anything, Digne is leaving Barca to play regular footy. Not to battle for a position against a 34-year old will likely be off the books this time next year. Assuming he stays healthy, I'm in the group thinks Baines still has a role to play. Not as a regular starter, though.

And I do believe this is Leighton's swansong season. If we need "ruthless", and we do, 1 August 2019 will see him, Jags, and Williams (if he remains) and their combined 190K per week off the squad and payroll.

Ian Riley
136 Posted 28/07/2018 at 19:23:50
Sorry, but change must come. A further centre-half is a must. Great service and professionalism but Baines must be replaced, along with Williams and Jagielka.

Ruthless? No! Their time is up. It comes to us all.

Mike Gaynes
137 Posted 29/07/2018 at 04:13:40
Digne listed on the bench for Barca against Spurs in Los Angeles... just kicked off.
Mike Gaynes
138 Posted 29/07/2018 at 04:22:03
ESPN now reporting that Digne was scheduled to start tonight but has been scratched... and is expected to fly to the UK tomorrow.
Gavin Johnson
139 Posted 29/07/2018 at 05:20:06

We do need to be ruthless. If we can't lose Williams in the next two weeks, it needs to be Jags. There's just no point keeping the both of them this season.

As for Digne, my view is that he will be the 1st choice LB with Baines filling in whenever necessary.

Mike Gaynes
140 Posted 29/07/2018 at 06:49:50
Gavin, not unless Silva significantly changes what we've seen of his style in the preseason, where he has the fullbacks pressing far up in attack. Digne is a superb defender, but Baines is much more effective going forward.

My guess is we'll see both of them in the lineup when we go three at the back... Baines pushing up on the wing.

Neil Copeland
141 Posted 29/07/2018 at 09:21:09
Mike, that's interesting, you think he will play more as a left sided CB then? If we get Mina (seems a bigger if by the day) then I presume he will play in the middle of the 3 with one of Keane/Holgate/Jags or even Williams on the right and Seamus as the right wing back.

I think that whichever way we look at it we still need 2 CBs based upon performances last season and pre-season thus far.

Karl Jones
142 Posted 29/07/2018 at 10:23:01
According to the latest in the Red Echo, he's now waiting for better offers. He must have been watching the last two Friendlies. As you would if you were about to sign for a club.
Michael Lynch
143 Posted 29/07/2018 at 10:33:33
I'm getting that sinking feeling now about our transfer business. Richarlison only wanted to come here because of Silva. Even Digne appears to be seeing us as a last resort.

It's becoming clear from the friendlies that we don't have the required skill set in the squad to play Silva's chosen formation. Either we get in players who can play that style, even if they're no better in theory than the players we already have, or Silva changes his style. Or – worst option – we get thumped by just about every other team in the Premier League.

Chris Gould
144 Posted 29/07/2018 at 11:02:53
This is thoroughly depressing. The type of players that we need to improve don't want to come to us because we are utterly crap. If Digne signs it will be because nobody else went in for him. So he'll be sat at Finch Farm wearing the shirt with a more miserable look than Lennon had when he signed.

Mina will not come. We need to shift our focus quickly or we're in for a long disappointing season. These players have already shown Martinez, Koeman, Unsworth and Allardyce that they won't change for anyone. They know that they'll continue to get paid and the manager will get sacked. Bunch of lazy losers.

Colin Glassar
145 Posted 29/07/2018 at 11:14:06
I hate being pessimistic but we seem to be being drawn into the ‘QPR Tony Fernandes Syndrome'. A well-intentioned owner who doesn't have a clue about football and is being “advised” by an incompetent nincompoop. Unless something dramatic happens, eg, Usmanov taking control and sacking the amateurs, then I think middle-of-the-table mediocrity is the best we can hope for.

Any footballer worth his salt would look seriously at any suitor (not just the offered salary) and decide what's best for his career. Right now, I don't think there are too many top players clamouring to join the “project”.

Gary Russell
146 Posted 29/07/2018 at 11:31:47
Alan (#133). He is only 20 years old like.
Gary Russell
147 Posted 29/07/2018 at 11:32:55
Okay, 21 next week!!
Susong Hermawan
148 Posted 29/07/2018 at 11:36:27
Skip this saga, Joe Bryan at Bristol is the better option for me.
Mark Tanton
149 Posted 29/07/2018 at 13:13:24
I see that Digne was a substitute last night but seems to have been unused.
William Cartwright
150 Posted 29/07/2018 at 13:39:30
The majority of the posts paint a very dismal picture. Normally I like to be positive, but at present no chance. The evidence is there for all to see. The best we can hope for is M&M stay true to their principles, and we keep the faith, and patience; lots of...

I don't mind players and their agents hanging on for a better deal. It just means everyone is generally looking out for themselves. Footballers are no different; especially considering the short career and all that.

What has really surprised me this year is how much more isolated the top 6 are becoming. It's like they are now from another planet and everyone else is just making up the numbers. I blame the media for this more than any one.

What can M&M do? Can we keep Lookman? Probably not. After seeing the rapid decline, I am sensing he is an extremely smart young man, or taking extremely smart advice. Why should he put his own aspirations on hold while we try to play catch up?

A combination of reserves, U23s, selected matches only for the OAPs and we should be fine!

Kevin Prytherch
151 Posted 29/07/2018 at 13:50:21
Someone somewhere has mentioned the lack of British targets and how fans relate to the team.

I'm concerned that we're linked with a lot of potential foreign mercenaries again. How many of these actually put a shift in when it matters and how many contribute to the soft team we have at the moment?

Martina, Schneiderlin, Klaassen, Mirallas, Tosun, Sigurdsson, Bolasie – now potentially Richarlison, Digne, Mina...

Is this an Everton team you can relate to?

I'm all for some foreign input to improve them team but I worry we're going too far and losing the identity of the club.

I know that buying British doesn't always work out (Keane, Williams) and we have had some foreign gems who understood the club (Arteta, Cahill) but I don't want us turning into a team who I can't identify with.

Ray Said
152 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:01:36
I agree with Susong (148). Bryan looks like a player who can step up, he has played well in a difficult division where he has shown good levels of energy, stamina, pace and strength which are qualities we lack, he has bags of potential and could be gotten at a reduced price to Digne.
Frank Crewe
153 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:04:09
"I'm concerned that we're linked with a lot of potential foreign mercenaries again."

So foreign players are mercenaries when they play for us but great players when they play for Man City, Man Utd, Arsenal etc? So how does that work?

We offered to buy them from their previous clubs. They did not demand to play for Everton. They are not mercenaries they are players we bought. If we are not getting the best out of them then we had better look to ourselves rather than blaming the players.

Everton already has a larger British contingent than most of the bigger premier clubs. Maybe we should have less. Man City fans don't appear to be having a problem "relating" to their foreigners. Maybe the degree of relating is linked to the amount of success the club has. Maybe if we had more success some of us would "relate" better to the foreign players.

James Stewart
155 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:04:38
If DIgne is waiting for "better offers" then we should walk away. Not the kind of attitude we need, we have fair too many mercenaries on ridiculous wages as it is.

Oh how I miss the days of Cahill and Arteta.

Tony Twist
156 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:10:52
I think Tierney and Bryan are the obvious choices for left back and the Newcastle captain for centre-back. Whether they are achievable targets I don't know.

The fact that Robinson is being touted to be going out on loan is worrying, wasn't Baines struggling at the end of the match yesterday?

Sam Hoare
157 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:11:48
Some people seem to be equating ‘British’ with fighting spirit and ‘foreign’ as lazy, workshy wimps. Take a look at the efforts of Jagielka/Keane last night compared to Richarlison.

We definitely need some more players who are going to work hard, care deeply and play with real passion but let’s dispense with the silly notion these players are more likely to be British.

Raymond Fox
158 Posted 29/07/2018 at 14:50:02
Digne seems a decent enough replacement for Baines if he signs, let's hope so.

I'm expecting 7th – 8th-ish again chaps, when we do sign players, they're below the very top class that we desperately need to get out of the hole we are stuck in.

You definitely, need to be a optimist to support this club because, just how we break this glass ceiling.... I'm struggling to find an answer – apart from throw £500M at the team!

James Marshall
159 Posted 29/07/2018 at 15:02:12
It doesn't matter that we have money now though – every team has money – the problem is attracting good players to play for Everton, not the money.

We're a mid-table side with no recent winning history. Today's players have never seen us win anything. They were all either not born, or tiny babies or kids when we last won anything so we're not an attractive proposition even with our so-called 'rich history' for players playing today.

The fact that we used to win the league before most people were even born doesn't mean a damn thing nowadays.

We're looking at slow, steady progress at best.

Paul Tran
160 Posted 29/07/2018 at 15:44:28
Plucky Brits work for and love the club?
Johnny Forriner is a mercenary?

Oh dear, dear me!

If you (like me) are upset at underachieving players staying at the club, instead of blaming 'the forriners', have a look at the person who has, over the years, habitually re-signed underachieving players on expensive long contracts.

Denis Richardson
161 Posted 29/07/2018 at 15:52:14
Well, I just read Man Utd apparently sniffing around Mina too, so if true that'll put that to bed. (And leave us with a desperate situation at centre-back!) £80M for McGuire or £35M for Mina – a no-brainer if reports to be believed.

Sam (#157) – I think (me anyway) when some people are talking about 'British' players, it's more to do with language and 'getting' the club than nationality. Dressing room banter and general communication is really important and unless you have world class players (which we def don't) I think a first team needs a few senior locals/native English speakers. We all agree Jagielka and Baines are not too far off retirement and if replaced by, eg, Digne and Mina, that leaves us potentially with just Pickford, Walcott, Keane and Coleman as our only native English speaking first teamers. Keane is unfortunately turning into a duff buy as it is and Walcott seems a bit of a sick note and is hardly a leader. Just my opinion, anyway.

More generally, we need some really narky players in the team to get the passion and aggression up (admittedly these don't need to be English speaking). For far too long we've been too soft and having Jagielka as captain really hasn't helped. Even Rooney found him too timid. And I don't mean Besic either, who imo is not good enough and a liability. We have no Cahill types in the team, to kick our own players up the backside.

I don't understand why we can't find decent Championship and lower league players who are desperate to take the step up and will give it 150%. Leicester got Vardy from Fleetwood for £1m and Mahrez from the French second division for £400k.

Payet cost fuck-all when first brought here (yes he was a dick but a class player none the less) and other teams manage to find decent lower league players on the cheap. A lot of our squad isn't even fit enough for a decent Championship team, never mind Premier League and we paid a fortune for them and are paying massive wages.

Martinez, Koeman, Allardyce, Silva (so far) – between them I can't think of a single young hungry player they bought from lower leagues who's been a first team regular. Even Lookman cost us £11m and has hardly played. Players out there in lower/other leagues who are better than the likes of Niasse, Besic, Jagielka (old), Baines (getting old), Schneiderlin, McCarthy etc. Have to wonder what our scouting team actually do all day.

Schneiderlin – awful value for money (I had high hopes)
Keane – awful value for money (where is the guy playing for Burnley?)
Niasse – enough said
Tosun – £27m pounds, early days but doesn't look like value
Walcott – decent player but on £120k/week + very injury prone
Sigurdsson – £45m! Decent player, will see if he plays better in #10 role

No Baines replacement at left-back, decent centre-back, central-midfield playmaker and decent passer, decent striker with pace. How we finished 8th last season I really don't know.

Sorry, rant over.

Mike Gaynes
162 Posted 29/07/2018 at 15:58:28
Mark (#149), Digne was originally listed as the starter but was pulled. Barca played two youth players, Miranda and Cucurella, both late additions to the squad. ESPN reported that it was "likely" Digne was flying to the UK today to sign with us. If true, the earliest he can get to Heathrow would be 10am tomorrow morning (Monday). We'll know then what's going on.

Kevin (#151), can't identify with an Everton team full of foreigners? How do you feel about a fan base full of foreigners? Some of us are, ya know.

Kevin Prytherch
163 Posted 29/07/2018 at 16:09:50
For foreign mercenaries – the type who come on big wages without putting in the effort. The ones who get a bumper pay rise – knowing we have to pay it for them to sign.

I'm not saying all British players are the answer (like I said – Keane and Williams), but paying the likes of Schneiderlin, Sandro, Klaassen etc top dollar only distances the supporters, affects the atmosphere, affects the team performance then we're in a vicious circle of having to pay over the odds to attract players.

You mention clubs like Man Utd and Arsenal – but both of them had a strong core British contingent (or British speaking like Denis pointed out) when they were most successful. You could also refer to clubs like West Ham or QPR who have been relegated while splashing the cash on expensive foreign imports.

It's no surprise that most foreigners take a while to adjust and some don't make it at all.

I'd happily take a Cahill, Arteta, Gravesen (on a good day), Distin, Van den Hauwe (might have played for Wales but was Belgian). They all had a point to prove and spoke English, they all stayed long enough to get the club.

Compare those foreigners with the ones we've paid a lot for: Lukaku, Schneiderlin, Klaassen, Bilyaletdinov, Krøldrup (expensive at the time), Niasse, Sandro (in wages), Bolasie and compare the effort they put into games.

I know which ones I'd rather have.

Ray Roche
164 Posted 29/07/2018 at 16:32:48
Kevin @123,

You can't fault the effort Sandro has put in in the games he's been involved in this pre-season. Okay, the end product hasn't been forthcoming but the effort has been there.

Sam Hoare
165 Posted 29/07/2018 at 17:34:13
Some sources saying Digne to have medical tomorrow. Fee around £18m.

I think he’s an improvement on what we have and is a good age and will be hungry after little game time at Barca. Ability wise I think he looks solid enough though personally I’d rather a full back with some searing pace, Digne is neither slow nor rapid. He’s better defensively than offensively so don’t expect too many Coleman-esque contributions though he won’t lose the ball often and has a decent cross. He’s also decent in the air.

Personally I’d prefer Tierney as I think he has the potential to be a more complete LB but he’s also more of a risk than Digne who has acquitted himself well in 3 of the top leagues in Europe.

William Gall
166 Posted 29/07/2018 at 17:40:19
At the end of last season, one of the major problems to be sorted out was a backup for Baines if he got injured again. Now, not seeing Digne and only going on what I read, my question is: Is he the backup for Baines or is Baines now his backup?

Or do people think that Digne will become the regular full-back and Baines maybe used as a left-sided midfielder instead of Schneiderlin as he couldn't be any worse.

Fran Mitchell
167 Posted 29/07/2018 at 17:51:37
With the state of our defense, a solid left back defensively is more important than a top full back offensively.

And Baines has got to go. £70k a week he is not worth, and with him we will only get worse.

If Robinson is good enough for back-up, then give him the role. If not, loan him out and get Byran in.

Frank Crewe
168 Posted 29/07/2018 at 18:53:42
@Kevin Prytherch

"Leicester got Vardy from Fleetwood for £1m and Mahrez from the French second division for £400k."

If we bought players from Fleetwood or some French 2nd division outfit the fans would be outraged and rightly so. We already have people complaining that Digne and Mina are Barcelona cast offs. If Barca players are not good enough then I'm pretty sure Fleetwood cast offs would not go down well at all
You can't have it both ways. Complaining that our competitors are spending far more than us and then complaining that we spend too much. On top of that blame the players for the fee and wages they get.

The fact is that getting top players on the cheap is mostly a fluke. You don't know if they'll cut it but the fee and wages are low so it's worth a punt. But 99 times out of 100 it doesn't work out. Why didn't City buy Mahrez when he was £400,000 instead of £60,000,000? Why didn't Chelsea buy Vardy when he was a measly £1,000,000? The same reason we didn't. Higher expectations than Leicester City. You want a top side you have to spend big. The days of picking up top players for next to nothing are gone. Clubs know what their players are worth and will extract every last penny.

Christy Ring
169 Posted 29/07/2018 at 19:28:35
Digne signing is a must now, I'm a Tierney fan, but just to sign a left back now, will do me. Our squad is so unbalanced, thanks Ronald, and the biggest problem trying to unload players is there salary/contract, that's why we're in this mess.
Stewart Lowe
171 Posted 29/07/2018 at 20:11:46
Can't wait for this one to happen, going from no left side whatsoever last season, to suddenly being able to match Coleman and Walcott / Lookman on the other side could be a massive improvement. We are never going to put right years of rubbish in one transfer window. We have to be patient.
Soren Moyer
172 Posted 29/07/2018 at 20:31:49
And why didn't we buy Maguire last summer instead of Keane? Steve Walsh was clearly the reason why we ended up with so much deadwood.
Terry White
174 Posted 29/07/2018 at 20:51:56
Hindsight is a wonderful thing, Soren (#172).
Terry White
175 Posted 29/07/2018 at 20:56:45
Since when is Schneiderlin playing as a left-sided midfielder, William (#166)?
Neil Copeland
176 Posted 29/07/2018 at 21:18:02
Sky reporting that Digne is expected to sign in the next 24hrs.
Graham Hammond
177 Posted 29/07/2018 at 21:21:10
Clearly we need a new left-back and have done for some time now. Injuries take a toll on most players over time ,both mentally as well as physically, and so bringing in Digne (for Leighton Baines) seems wise for what in today's crazy market seems decent value for money.

I would agree with Christy Ring in that my own preference would also be Tierney from Celtic but, given that he would probably cost a further £10M, it would seem wise and prudent to maybe postpone that deal for 12 or 18 months (fingers crossed) in order to keep the cash to strengthen the centre-back slots.

This is where we are currently most desperately short and in need. The way things stand at present, I am not convinced letting Funes Mori go was exactly the smartest move.

Dave Abrahams
178 Posted 29/07/2018 at 21:34:12
Mike (162), you are not a foreigner, you're a cousin to dozens on here!!!!
Jeff Armstrong
179 Posted 29/07/2018 at 21:53:27
Sky reporting deal will be done tonight.
Shane Corcoran
180 Posted 29/07/2018 at 22:19:41
Jeff, I was thinking over the last few days that SS hadn't any mention of Digne despite the fact they'll report any snip of a rumour.

Then this came up this evening. Hopefully it gets done.

Gavin Johnson
181 Posted 29/07/2018 at 23:34:53

And newspapers like the Daily Express were reporting as recently today that we were still in for Tierney. Just goes to show that most newspaper stories are BS!

Glad this deal is getting over the line. LB has been a problem for a while. I just hope we tie up a deal for Mina or another CB before the end of next week.

The CB position is a real concern for me. Silva likes to play a high line and our CB's other than Holgate don't have the legs for that system. Jags and Keane couldn't get back in time yesterday. If we do sign Mina I predict that Holgate will be his main CB partner. It doesn't bode well for Michael Keane's long term future if Silva settles on playing the high line. Keane is a very good defender defending deep but I don't see him adapting to the system we've seen so far in preseason.

James Stewart
182 Posted 29/07/2018 at 23:44:58
Shame, would much rather we signed Tierney but at least we will finally have a left back.

Agree with Gavin above regarding Holgate, I think he is a definite starter under Silva.

Dave Bowen
183 Posted 30/07/2018 at 00:16:57
If we don't get Mina, as has been mentioned here already, Marcos Rojo would be a great shout. Quick, left-footed & an upgrade on all of our other centre-backs. Admittedly, Silva likes a tall, imposing centre-back, but Keane with Holgate & Rojo would be a good fit.
Minik Hansen
184 Posted 30/07/2018 at 00:34:06
That talk about system and Keane, I hope that bad look at the back is only temporary. I remember early on, Distin complaining about Martinez's way of playing from the back. Suddenly it looked good for a season. Silva had better get this right soon.
Ed Prytherch
185 Posted 30/07/2018 at 00:57:17
I would like us to get Ahmed Hegazi from the Baggies if Mina is not coming. He is reported to have a £10M release clause but Spurs and West Ham are sniffing around.
Mike Gaynes
186 Posted 30/07/2018 at 01:16:35
Thanks, Cousin Dave!
Albert Perkins
187 Posted 30/07/2018 at 02:29:22
The talk about Digne not giving us his best is unfair. It is because he was, and was not, playing for Barca that he missed out on a world cup medal. That's got to be incredibly frustrating. He needs to work his socks off at Everton to prove he is worthy of the France squad. We are buying a player who would probably be in the best team in the world if he had regular playing time last season. Not bad, methinks.

I think we are most in need of someone in the middle who can take the ball and move it forward quickly and inspire forwards to run into dangerous areas up front and give it to them. I am tired of the aimless passing around at the back. Waste of time. I would rather we tell forwards to get forward and take chances with passes to them, not wait for the guaranteed cross into a box filled with defenders. We have wingers who can compete for through balls and take shots on goal. Speed things up, frighten defenders, keep them guessing. The Barkley we hoped for would do. Someone like him.

Kristian Boyce
188 Posted 30/07/2018 at 02:46:14
Say what you like about Schneiderlin, and most of us do, but I wouldn't call him a foreign mercenary. He's basically played nearly all his football in England, signing for Southampton at 17-18 years old. He joined them when they were in League One, and moved his way up the divisions.
Victor Yu
189 Posted 30/07/2018 at 06:23:13
What's holding this up? It has been 'close' for almost one week.

Is he waiting for a better offer like Mina? Is this why we are linked with Tierney again?

Mike Gaynes
190 Posted 30/07/2018 at 07:18:36
Victor, we're "linked" to Tierney by exactly one reporter, that gossip shoveler Fissler of the garbage Express.

Meanwhile, actual credible media report that the Digne deal is done, pending only his arrival in England later this morning, followed by a medical and a signature.

Please stop posting shite.

Mark Tanton
191 Posted 30/07/2018 at 07:31:00
Digne said his goodbyes on social media last night, wishing Barcelona well for the season ahead and saying he’s had a wonderful time there.
William Cartwright
192 Posted 31/07/2018 at 18:44:21
The signing of Richarlson and Digne, with the 'possibility' of Mina and the previous serious persuit of Tierney tells me that M+M have been consistent with their approach - Quality and not scatter-gun quantity. Also the prices paid show we are still in there competing to lead the chase, and possibly crack the top 6 in the not too distant future. Mind you, if we did it would then become the top 5, or ever revert to the top 4 etc., etc.

I am not sure what to make of the Rojo reports. First thought was Marco might want to be re-united with one of his former charges, but it seems their manager / player relationship was too brief to have any meaningful linkage. Perhaps though he sees something there?

If, and of course it is a big IF, we were to land Mina, and make excellent use of Siggy and Dowell during the next season, and get rid of Mirallas, Schneiderlin, Williams, and sort out worthwhile loans for some of the borderline players, then that would have been a hugely successful first window under M+M. If Marco can re-ignite Lookman's desire and raise his game then fantastic . . . . However, I doubt if we will keep him. He made a choice last year and made a success of it so accept that his heart is not in it for Everton and let him go to Leipzig, either on extended loan, or with a sell-on or buy-back clause.

With quality not quantity being the mantra, as well as the accent on promoting youth, I also am looking forward to Pickford staying, and one or two of Davies, Beni, Kenny, Dowell, DCL and Holgate really breaking through this season, if not possibly being set up into good loans into the Championship. There tends to be a surprise package that emerges every season or two, and it may be that 1 of the 6 really gets to establish himself.

League position . . . . ? Hoping for 7th but closing the gap on sixth and a good cup run. That would keep me very happy indeed. Anything better then we should be very thankful that M+M have really achieved what they set out to do, and they may be able to turn the ship in another season or two.


Steve Clay
193 Posted 31/07/2018 at 22:49:22
Big Sam kept us up. he did his job. He didn't progress once we were safe.

Silva is getting down the banks already. Patience is sadly, understandingly and regretfully the watchword. But give the lad a chance.

Brands and Silva have a massive task. At least we aren't suffering the massive hype of last summer.

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