Silva: Derby atmosphere was fantastic

Monday, 4 March, 2019 150comments  |  Jump to last
Stu Forster/Getty Images

Marco Silva has called on Evertonians to replicate in future games some of the derby fervour and the wall of noise that greeted Liverpool's players when the teams took to the field at Goodison Park on Sunday.

Fuelled by a rousing air-raid siren and then the famous tones of Z-Cars, the home crowd served up an atmosphere the like of which hasn't been seen at the Grand Old Lady in years as they prepared to cheer the Blues on to a rare derby victory.

They weren't quite able to manage the win but with the help of the Goodison faithful they frustrated the reds and became only the third team to hold Jürgen Klopp's goalless this season.

It made a change from the quiet that has been a feature of many recent home games as supporters have found entertainment to cheer hard to come by but the prospect of vanquishing the old enemy or at least causing them to drop points in their quest to beat Manchester City to the Premier League title provided the ideal conditions for a special atmosphere.

“It was important,” Silva said of the raucous backing his team received. “Let me say one thing to you: in my opinion one of the most important things happened this afternoon. The atmosphere in our stadium was fantastic, amazing.

“In the pre-match press conference I said that the fans could play a key part in the match, and they were really the 12th player on the pitch, no doubt about that.

“I know it's a special match, a derby, but if you could put this atmosphere, 70 or 80 per cent of it, every match, then 30 or 40 per cent of our job is done, because they can push our team to win, and they can make it really difficult for all our opponents, as they did this afternoon.

“We expect that they do that again in the next home match, because they can be a key player every time we play at Goodison. It's something I want, this desire every match, it is our obligation to show this every time, and together we can make things really difficult for all the teams, and show them that this is Goodison Park.”

“I know what the fans expect, and it is our obligation to give them it. But if they can be here for every match here at Goodison, they will help us to win more and more and more.”

A number of the players sent personal messages to fans via social media thanking them for their support and Bernard echoed his manager's sentiments, saying that the atmosphere gave the players an extra boost.

As he was in the reverse fixture in December, the Brazilian was handed a start in place of his compatriot Richarlison and he was asked if the noisy crowd helped the team.

"Without a doubt," he replied. "Goodison Park is amazing every game, but today was really something different given it was the Merseyside derby.

"I think they [the fans] did help us on the pitch, they gave us that little bit extra.

"I was really happy with the motivation that came from the stands and I think we need to be really grateful to them today for the result that we achieved.”


Reader Comments (150)

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Mike Gaynes
1 Posted 05/03/2019 at 04:58:43
No question about it. Goodison itself was MoTM.

My TV audio blew out.

Jamie Crowley
2 Posted 05/03/2019 at 05:25:51
Damn right it was. Freaking TV was as loud as a jet plane, even set on volume 1.

I know it's not the same watching on the tube. But you can tell. The place was just absolutely rocking.

It's so awesome to watch a game at Goodison when the crowd is completely into it, 100% behind the team, and baying support rivaling anything on earth.

Motivate those boys to put forth an effort like that every week Marco, and you'll get your bear pit.

I'm praying the fans stick right with the team. This is a crucial moment for Marco and the Club, and he's asking for support. He'll need it with Chelsea, Arsenal, and Man Utd coming to town. I hope they receive the exact same "welcome" as the stink did.

Our last nine games are anything but meaningless. We need to take some scalps, finish strong, and look with positivity to next season with a few new signings. The crowd can play a large role in that in my opinion.

Any malaise creeps back in, it'll be a really suspect time for us.

Jim Harrison
3 Posted 05/03/2019 at 06:02:04
Listening to the commentary at Goodson, they often seem to have to drop the audio intermittently to accommodate some bloke who loves a bit of profanity and sits up by the gantry!

Had it been Anfield, the commentators would have been creaming about the atmosphere and waxing lyrical about how special the kop is. Got a few mentions, but nowhere near as much comment as it warranted. Great effort by the faithful!!

Jim Bennings
4 Posted 05/03/2019 at 07:52:26
Liverpool looked visibly shaken and lost in the face of the pressure cooker — especially around the 60-minute mark, I think it hit them by that stage that we were going nowhere.

Same again in two weeks time for Chelsea, please!

Justin Doone
5 Posted 05/03/2019 at 07:56:25
Yes it was a great atmosphere but the derby usually is.

It's the chicken-or-egg debate: Do fans need to motivate players to perform well — or should players gee the fans on to give them something to get excited about?

All I know is, if everyone plays there part ,it's usually a better day!

Bobby Mallon
6 Posted 05/03/2019 at 08:11:12
I do believe the fans have an obligation to rally the players
Lee Courtliff
7 Posted 05/03/2019 at 08:21:28
We've heard all this before, many times.

It's impossible to recreate that atmosphere on a regular basis unless you are chasing the title or fighting relegation with only a few games to go.

When it's a bog-standard home game against a team like Burnley or West Ham etc, then there simply won't be a real atmosphere because there is nothing riding on the game.

That's one of the reasons I've always valued cup runs so highly, it keeps the crowd enthused right up until the end of the season. That feeling of still being able to actually do something rather than just fizzling out at the end of yet another disappointing season.

Tony Abrahams
8 Posted 05/03/2019 at 08:35:36
Very true, Lee, because if a team is doing well in the cups, then it definitely keeps the crowd more involved. I watched Liverpool at Man Utd, and when United's crowd got going, then I thought it knocked them out of their stride, Jim.

Made me think about bullies, and that is exactly Klopp's style of play. They play with tempo, they try and force you into mistakes, but when you stand up to the bully, you realise they are not as scary as they seemed, and that's why I loved Van Dijk's comments at the end.

Back to Silva, I'm sure he was already aware of the power that Goodison can bring to the Everton team, and I hope he can bring in some players that can help him play in a style that can really engage the Everton crowd, and give us a team that make it easy to get behind.

Michael Lynch
9 Posted 05/03/2019 at 09:49:21
The atmosphere was incredible, no doubt about it, best in years. The club helped by ramping it up before the game, but it is, as others have said, incredibly difficult to replicate that against Watford on a wet Wednesday.

But, whatever happens at future games, Sunday's match will linger in my memory for a long time. The longer the game went on, the more rattled the Shite looked as our players seemed to inhale the crowd's fervour and match it with their own. Sure, we weren't brilliant, but we really went for it.

I'm hoping that the manager and the new players in the team will realise that's what the fans want, and that's what they respond to. If Silva gets that, then he gets Everton, then he understands the job.

Andy Meighan
10 Posted 05/03/2019 at 09:51:23
Jim Bennings called for this last week. Let's make it a bear pit etc... well, you got your wish, Jim — and what an atmosphere it was!

Funnily enough, Jim, you saying that about them being shaken around the 60-minute mark, a red mate of mine said the same thing and remarked it gave us a boost.

I just hope we replicate it for the remaining home games because the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea will shit themselves — especially Arsenal, who aren't good travellers.

More of the same, please, boys!!!

Paul Burns
11 Posted 05/03/2019 at 10:22:49
Inspired by pure hatred and 34 years of injustice and lies conveniently ignored by a biased and cowardly media.
John Hammond
12 Posted 05/03/2019 at 10:31:29
Cracking atmosphere for the full 90 minutes. It's going to be the complete opposite situation and then some at St James Park on Saturday.
Derek Knox
13 Posted 05/03/2019 at 10:37:49
It's about time they realised and appreciated how important the fans are, surely it's not that hard to work out, if they gave that commitment every match it would be a regular feature.

Some of the utter garbage they have served up of late, is an insult to the loyal support, home and away. Let's hope that the penny has finally dropped.

Brian Harrison
14 Posted 05/03/2019 at 11:01:40
I am really happy that Marco Silva has come out and said what he has about the influence the crowd played on Sunday. But this isn't the first time he has commented on the Goodison atmosphere.

When he was manager of Watford they led at half time but the second half the crowd were magnificent and lifted the players to win the game. Silva commented after the game that he thought the fans had a massive influence on the result, and said his Watford players needed to handle it better than they did.

So I guess he has been surprised that he has had to wait so long to see Goodison rocking and even more than it did against Watford. Yes, results and performance have an impact, but the crowd were in their best bear-pit mood long before kick off. The other lot are always praised for the atmosphere they create mainly on European nights but, for me, there is no better atmosphere when the whole of Goodison gets behind the team.

Also when you hear Wenger and Ferguson and quite a few ex-players saying they hated playing at Goodison then that endorses my opinion that a Goodison that's rocking is the best atmosphere around. But we as fans need to realize this and make more games are like this not just against any of the top 6 teams.

Daniel A Johnson
15 Posted 05/03/2019 at 11:15:06
Credit the way Silva has turned things around.

He was in a massive hole but we appear to be coming through it. I genuinely believe Silva is a good manager, both the derby performances prove that. But we need to carry that power and passion into other matches as well and build some confidence and momentum.

We are seriously hampered by a lack of firepower and that invites pressure on us at times. It must be resolved in the summer... now, over to you, Mr Brands.

Colin Malone
16 Posted 05/03/2019 at 11:22:32
This is why it's so, so important that we replicate Goodison Park at Bramley-Moore Dock. I'm not impressed with the leaked structure of the new stadium.
Jim Bennings
17 Posted 05/03/2019 at 11:34:38
Daniel 15,

I tend to agree with you but let's wait a few more games before we talk of corners being turned and getting ourselves out of a hole.

It will be gutting if we don't get a positive result against Newcastle, we need to be expansive there because they are there for the taking.

Steve Ferns
18 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:14:33
Agreed Jim, but if Silva can take us to 7th then he will have had to get some big results at Goodison. If we manage to beat some of the top 6, and finish the season strongly enough to claim 7th, then the momentum we would have achieved could be crucial for next season.

As I said before he was appointed, he’d never been a bad run of form before. Okay he was at Watford, but he was sacked before he could show he could turn it around. That was the big question mark over silva, for me. So, if he passes that test this season, by coming out the other side, then he could be the manager that I hoped for.

Momentum is a big thing in football, if we finish as strongly as we were poor just a couple of games ago, and with a couple of key signings and a real sense of optimism for next season, and get off to a good start, then why can’t we break the top six next season and then start to claw our way back to where we should be (1st - NSNO).

Dave Abrahams
19 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:33:03
Goodison was a howling screaming cauldron from well before the kick off right to the very end, willing our team on to score the winner. It never came. Contrast that with the derby game at Anfield, their crowd were a bag of nerves throughout the match. In the last quarter of an hour, they were streaming out in their thousands, hurling abuse at their team; same score as Sunday's, they had given up on Liverpool winning.

Thousands of flags and banners on the Kop not much voice, Goodison on Sunday, a flag here and there, voices as loud at the end as they were at the beginning, we hadn't given up still willing them on,them Norwegians don't know how to support their team like Scousers.

Brian Harrison
20 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:41:21
Let's hope that the Cardiff and the derby games will give these players back the confidence that they have been sadly lacking for a few months. I really hope that Marco Silva can turn things around as the option is another manager with another philosophy for the players to take on board.

What I would like to see happen would be for David Unsworth to be given a coaching role with the first team. He has done well with the Under-23s who won again last night at Anfield to stay top of the league despite having a few eligible players out on loan.

I know a lot of managers have a group of coaches who move with them from club to club. But I think he needs to be given a chance at coaching the first team, and I am sure he would work well with Marco Silva. But whether Silva would see that appointment as a threat to him I don't know. I know some will say well he was given a trial when Koeman was sacked but the run of games he had was a poisoned chalice.

I also think if you are trying to build stability at the club, then what better way than promote from within if they have the ability, which I think Unsworth has.

Jim Bennings
21 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:43:37

Much will depend on our next three results, two tricky away games at Newcastle and West Ham and in between those is the home game against Chelsea.

Newcastle and West Ham are negotiable with the right kind of application and attitude and we need to have seen the last of results and performances like Brighton, Southampton and Watford away and Leicester, Wolves at home.

We need to win at Newcastle really as since Christmas we have lost far too many points against poor or average teams all due to being outfought and that’s hard to stomach.

If we match Newcastle for attitude and commitment on Saturday then we simply should beat them.

Hopefully the penny has finally dropped with the players regarding the levels required.

Paul Le Marinel
22 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:45:44
Justin 5, I do think that's a good point and perhaps a bit difficult to weigh up. But however, I would first and foremost say that in every game the players should be motivated in performing well, as if they do then that will gee the fans on to give us reason to get excited and from that it will further motivate the players and encourage them to do well.

And Derek 15, I wholeheartedly agree that they should realise and appreciate how important the fans are. What they fail to understand, is that a lot of people have season tickets and a majority come to some of the games at Goodison Park when they can and the fans have saved a lot of hard earned money, so they can be here and watch their team play.

At times Everton haven't played the best of football, of which their efforts before the Cardiff and the derby game, were not something that could be applauded. Every time the players perform, they should give 100% commitment, work hard, give their best efforts in seeking to win games and play with pride like they love playing for Everton.

They owe a lot to us fans as does the manager and they need to show us their appreciation of our support.

As for the progress of the team, we had a positive result against Cardiff and I thought we were unfortunate not to win the derby game. I hope we can build on those positives in performing better, gaining some good form and start winning again and hopefully go from strength to strength.

John Keating
23 Posted 05/03/2019 at 12:51:13
I was really glad Moshiri was there just to reinforce to him what could be owning Everton. I'm not sure he's been there with that 90 minute plus intensive atmosphere before.

I remember when the present RS owners just took over and attended their first derby, at Goodison, they were really shocked by the noise.

Sunday it was the supporters that led the way to encourage the team. Silva reckons it's a two-way thing, so now over to the players to inspire the fans.

Keith Gleave
24 Posted 05/03/2019 at 13:08:17
I have been saying that we should get behind the team for ages. If you're unhappy, do it at full time but give them full support on the pitch.
John G Davies
25 Posted 05/03/2019 at 13:12:58

They are all onto them.

Jay Wood

26 Posted 05/03/2019 at 13:29:44
That's a good read, John G.

Very droll.

Tony Abrahams
27 Posted 05/03/2019 at 13:30:21
I think Unsworth, would be a very clever appointment, Brian, but it would have to be endorsed off Marco Silva first. I think Colin Harvey, was the catalyst for Howard Kendall, but they were both friends and ex-teammates, so maybe that's why they worked together so well?

I've said this before, might be a load of shite, but if Louis Walsh, can pick out a bunch of individuals out of a talent show, and turn them into bands, that can go and smash America, (he done it twice) then surely the same thing could happen in football sometimes.

Silva, wants to succeed, and Unsworth seems to be a talented coach, who has definitely got Everton blood running through his veins, so I don't see no reason why this couldn't work, for the benefit of our team?

Steve Ferns
28 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:03:01
Tony, it always annoys me when people say things like "Get Wenger in with Arteta as his number 2".

Silva has to work as the figurehead of his team. Leeds famously appointed Clough without Taylor, and that was an unmitigated disaster.

What would Unsworth actually bring to this party? what would his role be? who's role would he be replacing, what would happen to that person?

Coaching is not like in the 1970s. It's not like coaching the local u10s. Everton have a team of analysts, not just one, but a team of over 5. They crunch the data, and Silva analyses it himself, with one of his own guys heading up that team. The identify weaknesses in the opposition, and try to come up with a game plan to exploit said weaknesses. They also identify how the opponent will exploit our own weaknesses.

Therefore, our coaching is compartmentalised. They run specific plays designed to manoeuvre the opposition out of position for certain players to find and exploit space.

For example, Sigurdsson has scored a couple of pullbacks recently, so Silva may have been working on drills where we get the ball down the flanks, whilst making Sigurdsson pop up in a certain position to receive the ball in space and slot home.

that's just one very basic example out of a set of numerous drills they will run, which have a number of "phases". It will involve all of the team running these drills with the ball moving in certain ways, so that they can make this happen in a game when the opportunity presents itself.

The coaching is very specific for each game and each opponent, taking into account the players they have the players we have.

Sure, Unsworth does seem an able coach, and I would very much like to see him as a manager one day, but I think it is very wrong, and very dangerous to force a coach into a setup that has been hired for a particular reason.

Silva has not used the same team at every club. There is a core of 3 of them from the Estoril days, and he's picked up others from Sporting and from Olympiacos, and even brought in a rival from Benfica to Everton to work with him for the first time. If Silva likes what he sees from Unsworth, then he may bring him in, of his own accord.

The bottom line is that you have to let the man, and his team of coaches, coach the way they want to. If it's not good enough, then you get rid of them all, you can't just force coaches on managers, as that has never worked.

Karen Mason
29 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:18:30
Lee at #7. Were you at the midweek match, last season when we played West Ham?? Admittedly, Rhino's last game in charge, but Goodison absolutely rocked. We ended up planting 3 past West Ham. In my experience, when it is visible that all the players are working hard & giving their best, it lights up the Grand Ol' Lady, whoever we are playing.

I did post on another thread, that we, the fans can be the biggest influence on confidence & motivation. We can make the difference, but admittedly, the players have to reciprocate. With that call to arms by the Manager, I really hope the Goodison faithful respond between now and the last game of the season, and bring back the magic.

Tony Abrahams
30 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:24:49
That’s why I said it would have to be endorsed off the manager Steve.

These set plays sound great, but football only stands still, on the television, or when the ball goes out of play, or the ref blows up for a foul sometimes?

Not disagreeing with you but football is about trying to do the right thing, at the right times, and getting the ball wide and looking to cut it back for someone running in to score, is the one of the most natural ways for any team in which to attack, IMO.

You say that it never works in football Steve, but other than Duncan Ferguson, outliving countless Everton managers, I’ve never been aware of it ever happening to be honest mate.

One of the biggest problems at the top of game, is that football is full of egos, but if people can put aside this deficiency, then they might find that, when they have a common goal, that it’s better to work with someone who really cares about what they are doing?

Mike Gaynes
33 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:46:20
Jim #3, you need to come watch the game on this side of the pond. The US announcers (all Brits) were talking about the atmosphere throughout the game and afterwards.

John G #25, thanks for posting that. Somebody on Fulham's marketing staff is a very good writer. I have a bit of a Cottager soft spot because some of my favorite USA internationals have played there, so I'll be sorry to see them go down.

Steve Ferns
34 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:50:39
Karen, I thought the Watford game had a very special atmosphere. When the third goal went in the roof came off like I hadn’t heard in years. Yes Sunday had a better atmosphere throughout the match, but Watford was louder. Sure, Sunday would have been louder again, if we scored. I think it was all set for that, but the team didn’t deliver.

The Watford game reminded me of fond memories of beating relegation. It was the crowd that would not give up and rallied the team and urged them on. Silva saw first hand the power of Goodison, I think he’s disappointed it’s take him until now to get that for his team, but it’s to be expected when results have been very poor.

Tony, I would love some clarification on Ferguson’s role. I have been told a few times now that he’s a cheerleader or a “water boy” (reference to the movie), who does nothing more than put the cones out.

However, he seems to be more and more prevalent on the bench now. Also, Zouma scored that header and ran past the bench clearly pointing at Big Dunc, indicating it was something they were working on. So perhaps Ferguson’s playing a bigger and bigger role?

He’s now been under four very different managers, five if you include Unsworth, so he must have learnt a lot, surely anyone could, especially an ex-pro. Maybe, he’s now proving himself to Silva and he’s one of them devising sessions and running them himself, with Marco watching on?

As for examples of it happening before, try Houillier for Roy Evans (albeit as joint managers!!), I recall Rene Meulensteen having a load of coaches appointed on him as he flopped badly in the top job. There are others but I’d need to rack my brain for them. Pretty sure Bruce resigned after being forced to work with someone. And other young coaches like the lad at Swansea being told who to have but then slowly getting rid of them.

Barry McCafferty
35 Posted 05/03/2019 at 14:54:58
When Barnard dribbled into the area, I thought he might have got the shot away before Van Dijk got a toe on the ball. A goal then would have had the old stadium shaking to the foundations. If only....
Brian Harrison
36 Posted 05/03/2019 at 15:21:41

Firstly the reason that it didnt work for Clough at Leeds wasnt so much the fact that he didnt have Peter Taylor with him, its because he loathed Revie and the way his Leeds team played. On his first day at training he gathered all the players together and told them to throw all the medals they had won in the bin because he said they had cheated to win them. He should never have gone to Leeds and his 44 tenure says it all, he shouldnt have been persuaded by Taylor to join Brighton another bad choice.

For me he is up there with the very best, and could argue he was the best. to win what he won with the players he had was brilliant apart from a couple of exceptions they had all been discarded by their previous clubs.

As for my suggestion of Unsworth joining the first team coaching team, he has already demonstrated what a good coach he is for his work with the Under 23s. Coaching is far more than running plays or having analysts point out things that should be obvious to a good manager. Just look at the most successful manager in England Alex Ferguson, he changed his first team coach every couple of seasons why because he wanted to use the best coaches available. But he was the one who bought the players, picked the team and decided the style of play.

Mike Gaynes
37 Posted 05/03/2019 at 15:52:26
Barry, both Calvert-Lewin's header and Bernard's sliding try at Richarlison's low cross were moments like that for me. You're right, we might have needed the new stadium right then.
Barry McCafferty
38 Posted 05/03/2019 at 16:53:14
Yes, Mike, two moments that could have changed history. Perhaps, Richarlison could have picked out Sigurdsson rather than a 50/50 for Bernard sliding in.
Tony Everan
39 Posted 05/03/2019 at 17:01:14
Give Silva credit.

He has been under massive pressure this week and has passed Section (a) of the last 11-game test.

Things are looking better, morale looks up and 2 clean sheets is glorious for him. The defence has looked better, Zouma and Keane played well. Seamus and Digne likewise.

It doesn't look like a blip, it looks like an upturn for us. I think we can get consistent and finish strong.

Section (b) starts on Saturday away to The Barcodes. They are playing better and it will be a tough test for us. They have more quality than Cardiff and a top manager. It is a great game for us to see where we are at... fully motivated and organised, Everton can take the 3 points.

Steve Ferns
40 Posted 05/03/2019 at 17:11:37
Brian, seen the film and read the books, so I'm familiar with the stories. Sadly my first hand memories of the great Brian Clough are of the washed up manager fighting relegation. I wish I'd seen him before his demons took over.

As for Alex Ferguson, he was a great manager, but he changed coaches because he never did the coaching himself. He knew his limitations and got the best people in to do that.

Silva is not an Alex Ferguson, and I doubt we'll ever see his like again. Silva is in the same vein as Guardiola, and Pochettino. No, not in terms of quality, but in terms of his capability on the coaching ground and a vision for how things happen on the pitch. This type of manager relies on his own coaching ability first and foremost. If he relies on another coach to do the main part of the coaching then the other coach is interpreting his vision and so something could be lost.

The guys Silva has worked with for the last 8 years will understand where that vision and be able to interpret it and even modify or improve it. Sure, freshening things up is great, but it needs to be the right guy. We all saw how Unsworth plays, and I like it a lot, it's good old fashioned Everton style attacking football, but it's not quite how Silva wants to play.

Also, does Unsworth want to be part of "team Silva", particularly when he might be dismissed if things go badly again, or would he rather be continuing to grind his way to another u23 title, and biding his time waiting for Everton to come calling again. Unsworth has this season's u23 title in the bag now. He will need to rebuild another side next season, and that will be difficult, but for the season after that, he has Anthony Gordon (who will be 19 then), Ellis Simms (also will be 19 then) and Korede Adedoyin (who will then be 20). I think that trio could be special, and certainly could land Unsworth another u23 title, 3 in 5 years would be something. He seems best placed, to me, in the u23s and waiting for the next call to be caretaker and meantime doing a top job bringing these excellent young kids through. He will get another shot (unless Silva does the unthinkable and the next manager is "Hollywood" as we have Champions League to offer) and he can build a side on the back of these excellent youngsters, hopefully in much better circumstances to last time.

Neil Copeland
43 Posted 05/03/2019 at 18:39:43
I am really looking forward to the game st Newcastle, I love away games largely because of the effort put in by our supporters. Southampton was a bit disappointing as was the team performance, Cardiff was great and particularly after we scored, the performance was also very good at times.

However, there is no place like Goodison Park when all 4 sides of the ground get going, it can be almost deafening. I have always thought that is our “job” as supporters; that is to help the team as much as possible. It was difficult to get excited during Koemans second season and even more so under Allardyce. Although Unsworth's team generally received decent backing from us.

I appreciate that some of the performances under Silva have been very poor but there still players out there who can excite. As Sunday showed, when we play our part, so does the team. So I think we as supporters need to get out of bad habits brought on by previous managers and roar on the current team through thick and thin. You never know we may even win all of last 4 homes games if we do.

Mike Gaynes
44 Posted 05/03/2019 at 18:40:16
Nah, Barry, from the camera angles I saw, Rich picked the right pass at that moment. Just put a little too much juice on it.
Brian Harrison
45 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:11:44

You are wrong about Ferguson not doing the coaching I know a lad who played with the class of 92 and I can assure you Ferguson did a lot of the coaching. You don't get to win 3 league titles 4 Scottish Cups and a UEFA Cup with a club like Aberdeen unless you can coach. Also he was doing it when Rangers and Celtic had good sides.

The reason he used so many coaches at Man Utd was because he knew that players over time got used to your methods and sometimes took things for granted. So he brought in top coaches to freshen things up, new training routines instead of what they had been used to. But he also did most of the coaching but at a massive club like Man Utd a manager cant always be on the training ground as often as they would like.

Sad that you only remember Clough when the demons had taken over, a little like they did with Howard in his 2nd and 3rd spells. Just a pity John Moores didnt have the balls to appoint Clough as Everton manager maybe if he had it would have been us winning European Cups back to back like forest did under him.

You talk about Pochettino another excellent manager, last summer I read the book about him written by Guillem Balague a fascinating read. When he first went to Spurs he had them videoed as they arrived for training every day then videoed every training session. The players didnt like it at first, but they come to realize it was an aid to show them how they could improve now they love it. But he has a settee at the training ground and he asks a player to sit with him and chat about everything other than football. H e wants to know about their kids are they happy and the same for the wives, his philosophy is if the kids and the wife is happy then you have a happy player who will give of his best.

Keith Harrison
46 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:18:17
I was at The Millenium in Cardiff for the rugby a week ago. The Welsh used every 'trick' possible to intensify the atmosphere. The electric advertising hoardings ran a succession of songs like Land of my Fathers etc every few minutes when the match was on.

Goodison playing the siren then Z Cars and Grand Old Team up to the kick off started the crowd off, and it was sustained for most of the game. The redshite never sang the 'Library' dirge once, in fact they were completely drowned out all game.

A little assistance from the stadium announcer and sound guys can really go a long way. Allied with driving the team on, the thus improving play increases the atmosphere, driving them on more in an ever increasing benign circle.

Someone at Everton should carry on the good work, but also utilise the German model of crowd engagement, with the crowd shouting out the players surnames when the team is announced.

Heres to more Goodison days like Sunday.

Kunal Desai
47 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:27:54
Im with # 21 - Jim on this one. Silva isn't quite out of the mire as yet. Two tricky games away to Newcastle and Westham, if we have turned the corner and Silva has got some of these players playing to the levels of the last two games we should see four points return from those two games. I would also expect us to beat Chelsea if we can create the same atmosphere as sunday. Lets how the next couple of games pan out.
Dave Abrahams
48 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:29:58
Brian (45), well said about Brian Clough, the best manager the England team never had. A one-off, outspoken but knew how to get his teams playing football and keep them going throughout the season, also keeping them with their feet on the ground.

One story I heard, he had three or four apprentices working on his garden. Nigel Clough came in, he had just flown back from abroad, after playing for the England U21s. Walking up the path of the house, knackered, ready for some “kip”.

Brian shouted to him, “Don”t take your coat off, you can drive these lads back to the ground.” Nigel knew his place, never argued, just did as he was told.

Joe McMahon
49 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:41:24
Dave and Brian (45 & 48), also don't under estimate the presence and influence of Peter Taylor at Derby and Forrest. It's a bit like Midge Ure never getting any credit for Live Aid
Niall McIlhone
50 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:45:19
Colin @16 and Keith @46. I just hope the techies on the sound pit at Goodison were able to "bottle" that crowd swirl of sound in a podcast or high-res audio file, and whip it over Stateside to Dan Meis. This is exactly what we would want at the Bramley-Moore Dock.

And the safe standing option must, in my view, be included for both home and away fans (as exists in Germany). I think we might then go some way to creating a bear-pit atmosphere at our new home.

You are right Keith, we need those little riffs and crowd prompts too. My personal preference would be the fanfare from "Forever Everton" playing in short bursts, I really love that song, it gets better with age!

Peter Laing
51 Posted 05/03/2019 at 19:54:21
The atmosphere at Goodison was visceral. Stirred up by a deep rooted hatred of Liverpool, what they represent and what their fan base aspire to. Manufactured, garish and obtrusive in all its lurid detail. The sirens certainly helped as did the teams apparent determination to ensure that Liverpool dropped points. Klopp was disingenuous in his comments about the wind, sub consciously he will have known that the bear pit that greeted his charges served to countenance their array of talent. Van Dijk was the only player in red who kept his head and probably ensured that they left Goodison with a point.

Can the atmosphere be replicated ? - of course it can. The team need to show the desire and determination that was evident on Sunday and the fans will reciprocate accordingly. It's still too early to say whether this could be Silva's Kevin Brock moment but it is up to him and his players to use Sunday as a springboard to better things, starting with continuing the two game unbeaten run and build upon the two clean sheets gained.

John Pierce
52 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:00:27
So a big game and Silva devised a plan and the players carried it out. It makes me crazy. Why did it take so long for him to change the way the team plays to get a foothold in this game? A plan which should have been a framework to help him out of the bad run much much earlier.

Was it finally the realizations that the Cardiff and Liverpool games could see him lose his job?

The players seemed to have no problems executing it, so perhaps contrary to some opinion they are more than capable of understanding and following instructions.

Or was it just the occasion?

Maybe Silva’s original dependency on previous tactics was flawed for the players he has? This might see a less expansive Everton as the season runs down, a notion he should have cottoned onto much earlier.

But a return to the turgid malaise at Newcastle on Saturday will just make the tactical adherence in Liverpool game the exception rather than the rule.

Steve Ferns
53 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:04:31
Brian, in 1992 Ferguson did do a lot of the coaching. However, as time marched on he stopped doing it. He never even went on the training pitch most days in his final season.

I’m not sure exactly when he hung his whistle up but it was Carlos Quieroz and Mike Phelan doing all the coaching in their time as his assistants. Brian Kidd was also supposedly an excellent coach, so much so that he’s still at City playing a part under Guardiola.

Ferguson accepts he was never the greatest coach, he didn’t need to be. He also wasn’t the greatest tactician. He was great at managing people and that included off the pitch backroom staff.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t our own Great Harry Catterick used to stay in his little hut in the corner of Bellefield and not bother coaching or watching the training of the players, instead leaving it up to his assistants?

Plenty of great managers achieved success without being a great coach. Another of our own managers, Walter Smith was another watcher who stood in the sidelines rather than leading the coaching. As was Ronald Koeman, who left it all up to Erwin.

I love Marcelo Bielsa, but he’s not the coach he once was. His methods were heavily criticised last season, and he was said to be extremely dated. It’s working at Leeds, but observers have remarked how it’s nothing innovative, just typical Bielsa coaching, as devised in the 1990’s. Time marches on, even against the innovators. I doubt Guardiola will still be winning trophies in 10/15 years time. Most likely to burn himself out, but also likely to be out of date and left behind.

This is what Alex Ferguson understood and why he tried to move with the times by getting in the best guys, like Quieroz and Rene Meulensteen.

Dave Abrahams
54 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:05:54
Joe (49), no I’d never under rate the influence Peter Taylor had at Forest and Derby alongside Clough, a massive pity they fell out and never made up their differences, until Brian attended Peter’s funeral with his son Nigel, too late then.

A friendship that started at Middlesbrough, where Taylor was the goalkeeper and lasted at different clubs until their fallout, a great shame for everyone involved.

Tony Abrahams
55 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:16:15
Peter, I like Silva, I really hope he succeeds, but the secret to success for any team, is first being able to defend, so this is going to be our biggest problem moving forward?

Why is Digne, so wide when Salah, got his chance in the first half, and why does the same player have to come from nowhere to clear a certain goal for Fabinho, with a great last ditch tackle, when everyone had stayed deep from a corner?

I’ve heard a couple of shouts that the defenders have started disagreeing with the coach, with regards to certain aspects of defending, and this is why I think someone like Unsworth or Stubbs, might just be able to make a better fist of it, but maybe Steve is right, and they might just get in the way of what Silva, wants to do with his set-up?

Let’s face it, to many sideways or backward passes are not something that gets the crowd on its feet, so unless our style changes, (hopefully with better players) then it’s only going to be loud at Goodison, every so often at best?

Peter Laing
56 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:18:59
Steve, your comments about Koeman and his time at Everton are true, he did rely upon Erwin to deliver the training sessions, hardly spoke to the players and only improved two things during his tenure, his golf handicap and his bank balance.
Tony Abrahams
57 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:28:54
Steve @53, times move on but certain things will never ever change as far as I'm concerned mate. I read Andy Cole's book, and he said the treble was won on the training field, and he never mentioned tactics once.

He said Kidd, used to really run them ragged every so often, and the phrase that was used every time the players were on their knees finished, was “well done lads-that's another one in the bank.”

Football is about loads of things, but real winners never know when they are beat, especially when they are as fit as possible, which enables them to never give in?

Dave @54, I read somewhere that the only reason that Clough, ever became a manager in the first place, was because Taylor, had spotted his talent, and had told him how great he could be if he put his mind to management?

Tony Hill
58 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:33:38
What I think we’re building, or re-building, is an Everton character. That will be a complex process and will require the entire club to adjust and become much, much more rigorous and precise than we have been for many years.

It will cover many things but the starting point is to develop toughness, both physical and mental, on the pitch. The lovelier stuff will follow. That’s the right way round, the right way to create an enduring challenge.

Start with the one touch, flowing football - or some pretence towards it - but without foundations or the consistent ability to make it work and you will find yourself where we were a month ago.

Lets get mean and annoying; Sunday was a starting point.

Steve Ferns
59 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:35:18
Tony, you know Silva was a defender, right? He was a left back to be precise.
Tony Hill
60 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:43:38
Yes, but he has shown precious little defensive awareness, Steve. I think he and his team are now developing it and I am encouraged. I also think he is passionate about the club and I agree with you that the Watford game last year at Goodison was pivotal for him.

What I feel, but find it difficult to define, is that there has been a shift in "tone" with the manager and the team. Such things are crucial and while we still have much to do, I truly believe that Sunday (and the Cardiff game, actually) will be regarded as a turning point for all sorts of reasons.

Ray Smith
61 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:47:25
Several TW's have alluded (quite rightly) to building a solid defence for next season.

Can anybody explain the current situation with Mina?

I'm not sure whether he is genuinely injured or is happy to take the money for little or no return!!!

Tony Abrahams
62 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:51:13
I read that Steve, I also read he was always a leader type, but what is your point mate?

I played loads of games as a left back, and the first thing I learned was when the ball was on the other side of the pitch, then take up a position that will help you cover your centre backs.

I know football has changed but it’s a lot easier to pull out wide once your team has full control of the ball, than it is to chase back because you are out of position defensively, and this is what I see way too much of from our fullbacks, and why I think Silva’s system, might work better with 3 centrehalves?

John G Davies
63 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:52:50
Everton have won more headers while directly defending set pieces than any other team in the league. The problem has been with the second ball.
A few instances on Sunday showed they are starting to address the second ball issue.
Tony Hill
64 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:53:05
I was wondering about him Ray. His disappearance at Millwall was a shame but I think he's got a lot to offer and he seems (perhaps it's an illusion) to be popular with the other players. I believe he's got a big part to play with us - I hope his agent agrees.
Steve Ferns
65 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:55:10
Tony, I would like to think the 17 day break was the turning point. The difference in the players could be returning confidence, it could be less fatigue, but it could also be Silva demonstrating that he is a good coach. It was like a mini-preseason for them and it’s no surprise for me that we’ve been better.

As for Mina, the guy will come good and he is genuinely injured. I wonder if you saw any game other than the England one in the World Cup, because I was very impressed with him. Tim Vickery was raving about him for years too. He just needs some patience.

Tony Hill
66 Posted 05/03/2019 at 20:59:04
We've also conceded some shite goals from unmarked or weakly defended headers, John @63. Notably against Millwall, Wolves and Man City recently. But I agree with you that it's been a wider problem.
Tony Hill
67 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:04:26
Yup patience all round, Steve, hard though it is. I think the fans will be much more tolerant now; that's another vital shift. Yes, the break may indeed have been a moment to breathe and regroup, not just on coaching but to get minds right.
Tony Abrahams
68 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:06:13
I think the biggest difference might be that he has gone back to his favourite system Steve, with regards to Schniederlin, playing right in front of the back four?

I know Snides is not good enough, but when you and John Daly, both say this has always been the most important position in any Silva team, then maybe the manager might just be finding it easier getting his point across, and the players might also be finding him a lot easier to understand?

I think I understand the system Marco wants to play, but it’s never going to work until he gets the right players imo, and that’s why I’d love him to tweak a few things, because I’d really love him to succeed?

Andy Crooks
69 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:22:09
Steve Ferns, I doubt there is a supporter on any other fan site in the world who offers such considered and thoughtful analysis. I hope to get the chance to meet after the Man Utd game.
Len Hawkins
70 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:25:59
Steve Ferns #53 I believe that Wilf Dixon did the training whilst Catterick was manager, I think it was on that Sky Sports The Days of our Lives when Joe Royle Colin Harvey and Howard Kendall were on it they mentioned after Stelling asked them about Harry Catterick that Wilf Dixon ran training. The one funny moment in that was when Kendall said one of the players put a sign on the gate at Bellfield " Beware of the Catt".
Tony Hill
71 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:36:33
At least we're not Real Madrid.
Steve Ferns
72 Posted 05/03/2019 at 21:43:35
Not sure I quite agree with you Andy, but I’ll definitely meet you for a coke (off the beer for lent sorry!).
Jay Wood

73 Posted 05/03/2019 at 22:09:51
Steve @ 53.

Being a keen student of the game and as someone who has written glowingly of Bielsa, if you haven't done so already I suggest you read and listen to the following article and podcast on the Beeb.



You might care to review your opinion that he is not the coach he once was and that his methods are extremely dated.

I watched their game Friday night vs WBA. They way they constantly had 3 men pressing the opposition player in possession reminded me of our all-conquering mid-80s side. They were excellent.

Numerous players and officials within the club say should Bielsa leave tomorrow, the structure he has put in place will make it easy for any incoming manager to step into and continue the good work he has started.

The podcast in particular highlights his thoroughness and attention to detail and how he has completely transformed Leeds' fortunes in less than a season. In fact, he sounds as if he has OCD - obsessive compulsive disorder - in many, many seemingly trivial details, but there always appears method behind such apparent madness.

You recently said it is unrealistic to expect a manager to transform a club in his first season. Bielsa has done just that with pretty much the same players as he inherited, and doing it with tremendous style too.

Sean Patton
74 Posted 05/03/2019 at 22:13:49
Yeah Tony I'd hate to win 3 successive Champions Leagues
Tony Abrahams
75 Posted 05/03/2019 at 22:15:07
Imagine that, Sean!
Paul Birmingham
76 Posted 05/03/2019 at 22:33:13
Get the chemistry right in the team, and the team turns up, Goodison Park always responds. Sunday was superb, now for Silva to get the message home to the squad.

Now to see what team is picked for Newcastle. Let's hope Sunday is not another flash in the pan.

There's loads to go for after Sunday in terms of points, pride and for many of this Everton squad, their futures.

Tony Hill
77 Posted 05/03/2019 at 22:54:41
Just my little joke, Sean.
Jamie Crowley
78 Posted 05/03/2019 at 23:12:38
Tony @ 39 -

I agree with your section (b) analogy. The Barcodes is a big, big game in my opinion.

Coming off a dreadful run after what seemed an 84 week break (approx. 2 in reality) to play Cardiff, there surely had to be a response, and plenty of time for Silva to coach his players up and shore up his tactics. We should have won that game by any metric, and we did. Convincingly.

Then you have the mother of all games, the derby. Surely, again, if the players can't get up for that game there's massive problems. We acquitted ourselves very well in my opinion.

Now. . . every single excuse for a loss is on the table this weekend. We're away from Goodison. We're coming off the "emotional high" of a derby. We've had two good results snatching 4 points out of a possible 6 in our last two. There's really not much left to play for, so they say.

A loss will mean we can't get up for it. We've not learned our lessons in effort and application. It would show, to me, that there are players willing to coast and go through the motions, playing at 75% effort and not having that "killer instinct".

A win and a similar effort to that which we've seen the last two games would mean we can indeed keep the momentum running, we're moving forward, and the attitude has changed.

A culture of winning is just that. Losses aren't tolerated. Effort must be at its peak for every game. I think this upcoming week will show us an awful lot about where this team truly is mentally and in the wider picture.

Jamie Crowley
79 Posted 05/03/2019 at 23:15:13

The away support will, without a doubt, be behind the team after this recent run of games.

Of that I have zero doubt.

So it's down to Marco and the boys. Show us which direction you're heading in come Saturday.

Jamie Crowley
80 Posted 05/03/2019 at 23:19:26
Three posts in a row - a bit of a faux pax I'm sure, but screw it.

Steve Ferns - off the beer for Lent! You're a bigger man than I.

How do you even do that?

I'm quitting the pinch between my cheek and gum. Nicotine is the devil. It might kill me, but I doff my cap as I could never give up beer!

John Pierce
81 Posted 05/03/2019 at 00:11:29
Tony A, I think you are on the right track. I think Silva has doubled down on what his preferred system is and has at last realized specifically the midfield is not fit for it. Going back to Schneiderlin has its limitations but will make us more compact, especially in transition.

In fact, it's almost a back five at times. I thought the Burnley game was his light bulb moment, as a genuine back five suited the personnel better. You alluded to that too, I agree, I still think that's our best formation.

With nearly all the games ‘away' as the home games are against much better sides, compact and counter-attack would make a better plan.

But truly I'm not sure he really has changed that much!

Don Alexander
82 Posted 06/03/2019 at 00:20:13
Jay Wood (#73), your opinion of Bielsa may be valid but the fact is he's in charge of a team in the Championship, not the Premier League. To me he mirrors Silva's achievements in leagues that are, in comparison to the Premier League, appreciably easier to conquer and in saying that I don't write off the "sameness" of so many Championship teams who, pitched together, produce a very watchable but second-rate product.
Steve Ferns
83 Posted 06/03/2019 at 00:24:46
Jay, you know more about Bielsa than anyone. I’ve been a fan of his since he took the Bilbao job. Bilbao were always my Spanish team, incase you don’t guess immediately why, Howard Kendall is the answer.

Anyway, in the 1990s Bielsa, back in Argentina re-invented closing down and took it to extremes. Then he came to Bilbao and blew everyone, including Man Utd away. Although his team ran out of gas, as has since become customary. As an aside, note his own league victories came in Argentina in shortened league campaigns with Messi’s favorite team, NOBs.

Anyway, Bielsa was the pioneer. The “high priest of the press” and an innovative coach with new and fresh ideas. Those ideas are now dated. Everyone from Guardiola, Pochettino, his old assistant Sampioli, and even Klipperty has taken what he preached and adapted it to suit themselves.

Now everything you said is correct. But you say this as if it revises my position, not so. His coaching is dated. His methods on the training ground are old hat. Tying rope around defenders legs to get the back four to stay closer together is something we did in England in the 1980’s.

So yes, he’s still pulling up trees and recovered spectacularly from his failure at Lille and the implosion at Marseille, the farce at Lazio and restored his reputation.

And yes he’s still a fantastic coach. He’s attentive to details, he’s a great motivator and enthusiastic and infectious in his personality. But that doesn’t change that his coaching has all been seen before, copied and improved, but he’s still doing the same old thing. But, as they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. And I still love the guy.

Derek Thomas
84 Posted 06/03/2019 at 00:25:46
Jay @ 73; The attention to detail sounds a lot like Revie's Leeds and I'm sure if they don't get promotion this season, they will next... just as long as they don't resort to the same thuggery, though that might be a bit harder now, what with Football fast becoming a non-contact sport.
Steve Ferns
85 Posted 06/03/2019 at 00:37:08
JP, you only just figured out that Schneiderlin drops into the back four and so negates the need for an extra centre-back? He's been doing it ever since he came.

If Silva's tactics work as they should they speed things up, not slow them down. Schneiderlin should be hitting the easy ball to Walcott instead of going for the easier but pointless sideways pass. Silva doesn't want that sideways pass he wants it out onto the flank quickly. He wants us higher up the pitch with the ball before the opposition has recovered their shape. Just because a player fails to execute the tactic correctly doesn't mean that what he's doing is the actual tactic or his instructions, nor does it mean the tactic won't work. As for adapting tactics, I think that's not the case, it's more the players starting to do what they were always meant to do.

Silva's comments that he isn't able to get another tactic into the players is telling. To me, he's saying that the players are struggling to implement this one, and how can he get them to do something else, which is actually harder, and will probably just confuse them. Expect more intense coaching and a fuller range of tactics after pre-season.

Derek Thomas
86 Posted 06/03/2019 at 00:40:04
Jamie @ 79 + and minus; I've alluded before to Silva's 17 day 'Kevin Brock' moment, so if it isn't Onwards Vs Cardiff, Upwards Vs the rs and more of the same at Newcastle, then it may just be another false dawn. There will be setbacks, there always are, but it's the general trend we look for.

He's basically re-applying for his own job (who else is there?)...look, here's what I've done given a bit of time, how about it?.

It's his job to lose between now and the end of the May.

John Pierce
87 Posted 06/03/2019 at 01:19:04
Steve, firstly stay on the ale, quit TW for lent instead. I can see so much upside!

Second don't be so cheeky! Silva got a clear plan into them using existing players for the City, Cardiff and Liverpool games.

It's not the players cannot take on a plan, he's simply tried to in part something too fully and too quickly.

My frustration is clear. The fact he does not have three midfielders who can pass, quickly and with range, therefore his insistence on using them in an overly expansive system which has killed us, mostly when the onus is on us to dominate.

Belatedly and after repeated folly against much poorer sides, he has created the pressure himself, he may have realized he needs to reconfigure based on the limitations of his midfield. He has only looked like a half decent manager (ironically) against the better sides because he has accepted we will have less of the ball and is naturally less expansive.

By using Schneiderlin he will slow things down not speed things up I guarantee. My point was if he plays like a centre back, you might as well play a back 3 and utilize you wing backs as actually that retains a compact shape but is a more attacking option. Digne has a better passing range than Schneiderlin IMO and Coleman is far better suited to it too.

A back four with a Schniederlin gets the most out of maybe 2 of that back 5. A back 3 with wing backs arguably gets the best from 4 of that 5.

My over-arching point is Silva hasn't used the players he has inherited in their most natural positions whilst he imbues them with his style. Had he shown a touch more pragmatism he'd definitely have 7-10 more points and far less detractors.

Whatever the outcome this season, he's placed significant doubt in his ability were there need not be any!

Hope you're planning a big night out come Easter!

Best Jp

Steve Ferns
88 Posted 06/03/2019 at 01:32:44
No point going round in circles. The consensus on TW seems to be that Schneiderlin was crap against Liverpool. And yet, of all the subs, he was the only one who got a standing ovation when he went off. There is a marked difference for me between the match-going fan and those on here.
Jay Wood

89 Posted 06/03/2019 at 01:42:01
Steve @ 83.

"Jay, you know more about Bielsa than anyone."

I'm pretty confident in saying I don't Steve, and absolutely certain I have never made such a claim about ANYTHING in this world in my entire life.

Now a man who does know a lot about Bielsa is Jed Davies who wrote a great book on the man after studying him for 3 years.

This link is an interview with Davies that summarizes Bielsa.


For Everton fans maybe not interested in reading the entire article, I would recommend you read at least passage #5, Affinity with the fans. It will resonate with many of you.

Add to that moving example that in his time at Leeds he asked how many hours work a typical Leeds fan had to do to pay for a match day ticket and on learning it was 3 hours, he instructed the players to spend 3 hours tidying up litter at the training ground. This is a man who keeps his players grounded and very aware of their obligation to the fans.

But back to your post Steve. You repeat a myth that his teams run out of gas (easy to find counters to this, including from Jed Davies).

Similarly, Davies refers to how even now Guardiola applies strategies Pochettino devised by Bielsa, and the success the maverick is having with Leeds suggests his methods are far from dated as you claim.

Now he isn't (reverently) called 'El Louco' for nothing. He is as likely to walk as he is to stay if things are not exactly to his liking.

But he is an example of a manager who HAS totally transformed the mindset and infrastructure of a club in less than a season, proving it is possible to do so.

Steve Ferns
90 Posted 06/03/2019 at 02:04:17
You were trying to pull me up on his coaching methods Jay, yet you’re referring to his managerial skills. On that I agree with you. As I said, I love the guy. I waxed lyrical about him on here in 2014, when he was my only choice for manager ahead of Roberto Martinez. So all the points you’re making, yeah I agree with you. Don’t understand why you’re making them to me though.

Running out of gas is no myth.

Happened at Newell’s. Happened for Chile. Happened for Bilbao. Happened for Marseille. Lille never got going. Happening again at Leeds. When has his side never run out of gas?

Only in the half season leagues of Argentina.

Steve Ferns
91 Posted 06/03/2019 at 02:13:39
Jamie Crowley
92 Posted 06/03/2019 at 02:34:08
The consensus on TW is Schneiderlin was crap against Liverpool?

I'm in the minority then. Sans one giveaway, he was excellent in my opinion against Liverpool, and excellent against Cardiff.

Jay Wood

93 Posted 06/03/2019 at 03:05:54
Steve @ 90. Steve. I wasn't trying to 'pull you up' on anything. Just offering an alternative opinion to your own to consider.

And for me it certainly isn't a question of semantics. I made no reference or distinction between his coaching and his management. That is something you've appended in your last post.

And I'm making my points to you because you are making claims in this thread that I don't agree with and simply offer an alternative point of view.

Here, for example, is a very well presented article on the myth (as I view it) of 'Bielsa Burnout' which you present as an absolute, indisputable.


It again quotes Jed Davies who studied Bielsa for 3 and a half years.

If you listened to the podcast link I posted earlier you would have heard one of the fitness bods at Leeds saying the player data they monitor showing the players are getting stronger, rather than showing signs of fatigue.

Laurie Hartley
94 Posted 06/03/2019 at 03:34:37
Great thread this - here is my two bobs worth:

Tony's comment at 52:

“Football is about loads of things, but real winners never know when they are beat, especially when they are as fit as possible, which enables them to never give in!”

Excuse me Tony but I have changed your question mark for three exclamation marks because in my opinion Silva should make that into a sign and put it up in the changing rooms at Finch Farm.

John Pierce
95 Posted 06/03/2019 at 03:53:36
JaC. I agree Schniederlin did his part on Sunday. Extremely good without the ball, as were all of the team. He help push Liverpool down the sides and often back into the middle we’re frequently we outnumbered them, it broke the play up and forced the ball. It starved the front three.

With the ball he was pretty careless, I did see more turnovers than perhaps just the one. However he was no worse than many in the team apart from Bernard. He definitely is providing added layer of protection, I think a back 5 would be better but no complaints.

But then again you can’t see much if you watch from a screen, compared to the excellent ‘beer googles’ you can get at the ground for the discerning match-goer. Hic!

Alan J Thompson
96 Posted 06/03/2019 at 05:06:41
Harry Catterick's assistants? That would be Wilf Dixon. I don't think The Catt even had an Assistant Manager and did most of the scouting himself.
Jamie Crowley
97 Posted 06/03/2019 at 05:22:45
What happens when you don the beer goggles while watching on the screen?!


I think a lot of the "carelessness" we saw in the game SJP was also down to both sides, when it was appropriate per tactical instruction at the precise point on the pitch they were supposed to do so, closed down and caused a lot of pressure.

Although the game opened up, the ugly turnovers, to my recollection, occurred mostly in the first half. Both sides were closing aggressively when and where they were told to, to my eyes at least. Ergo, some brutal looking turnovers.

But Schneiderlin's giveaway to almost gift Salah a goal was really, really poor. Otherwise, I think he's been excellent the last two games in the main.

Not his biggest fan, but he's played really well our last two, again sans that one glaring error. Thankfully Jordan stepped up.

Jamie Crowley
98 Posted 06/03/2019 at 05:31:07
By the way SJP, to "balance" this out, inasmuch as I've been very complimentary of Schneiderlin (deservedly so), he's still doing something that drives me nuts.

After he passes, he doesn't move quite quick enough, for me, to show for the ball again if a teammate needs that "support".

He passes, and then kind of watches or jogs. I'd like to see him pass, then move quickly to a point where a teammate can give him the ball back if needed.

It might be just me, but I have seen him pull that stunt more than once. It used to be an epidemic with him, and he's gotten much, much better. But I have seen him pass and not move quite as quickly as he should, or more importantly as quick as a teammate under pressure might want him to.

But it's more the exception rather than the rule the last few games he's played.

Might just be me looking for it too much, as it drives me crazy and I witnessed it all too often before his recent return? Sometimes it's hard to look at things afresh once you're jaded.

But again, overall, I think he's been really good. Time will tell if it continues or he reverts to type.

Darren Hind
100 Posted 06/03/2019 at 06:08:28
The Atmosphere at the old lady is completely different to the theatrics witnessed at Mordor. You won't see many badge wearing, banner waving, gobshites being encouraged to sing mind-numbingly long dirges by some joker operating the PA system.

Goodison is real, it's raw if the crowd is worried or disappointed, you know it. No stage managed falseness for the cameras. No mindless songs about some twat "dying, dying, dying" – wish to fuck he'd hurry up.

The Old Lady is unique. when she rocks, there is no other ground to compare. No frills just passionate, passionate, football supporters on their feet shaking their fists, urging their team forward, screaming, baring their souls and their love of Everton Football Club. The place actually shakes to its foundations.

I have been worried for some time that the old lady had had its soul removed, poor management at the top, poor management at team level, brain-numbing anti-football served up on a weekly basis seemed to have killed the spirit of the Evertonian... What the fuck was I thinking?

I wasn't there on Sunday. I watched alone in a darkened room, but I recognised the old girl. She was back in all her glory, That unmistakable passion swept all around my living room. I swear there were times when I wanted to climb into the telly.

The soul of this stadium can't be extinguished. it will never die. Even when we've moved out and it's been leveled. You will still be able to stand on the spot, close your eyes and experience that incredible, outpouring of raw emotion.

Mike Gaynes
101 Posted 06/03/2019 at 06:46:23
Jamie, you have an interesting definition of "excellent" where Schneiderlin is concerned.

Having watched the game again yesterday, I thought he improved in the second half to the level of barely adequate, the same level he achieved against Cardiff. I saw four egregious mistakes against the RS, not just the one that let in Salah, but after two of them the reds messed up and gave the ball right back, and another was covered by Keane and Coleman.

What's more, I didn't see a single really good play he made against the reds. Did you?

Laurie Hartley
102 Posted 06/03/2019 at 08:18:13
Darren Hind # 100 - 55 years later and 12,000 miles away I can remember one night as a 15 year old, the repeated chant of “Everton” followed by three claps, literally bouncing of the four double decker stands of the old lady like a thunder clap. It was unforgettable.

It may have been against Inter Milan after we had won the league, I am not sure, but I had never heard anything like it before or since.

Yes Goodison at its best is a mad house - as it should be.

After reading Jay Wood’s link @ 89 I think Marco Bielsa would fit right in if we are ever looking for a new manager - he would like us.

Neil Copeland
103 Posted 06/03/2019 at 08:25:08
Mike and Jamie, concerning Schneiderlin; I went to Cardiff and the derby and I thought he had a good game at Cardiff although less effective against the RS.

The thing that surprised me, particularly against Cardiff, was how much he freed up Gana to play further forward which in turn gave Sigurdsson more space. Against better opposition in the derby, he was less effective in this role and although Gana and Sigurdsson had decent games, they were winning the ball and closing down more than moving us forward. I still think Schneiderlin did ok though and was good without the ball.

For me the jury is still out with him, I wouldn't say he has redeemed himself, more like a stay of execution for now. It will be interesting to see how Silva lines the team up for the remaining games.

Martin Nicholls
104 Posted 06/03/2019 at 08:31:00
Darren#100 - great post. I WAS there and you're spot on!
Eddie Dunn
105 Posted 06/03/2019 at 08:36:08
Reflecting on what Darren just said about the theatrics across the park. I watched the Dortmund "Wall" last night as they sang YNWA, well, what is that all about?

And that bloody drumming. Now we know these idiots organise all of this noise – it makes Crystal Palace seem sensible, even when they concede, the bleedin' awful drummer starts again.

Well, 25,000 pretendy Kopites holding their silly scarves and miming "that song" didn't do the trick. Give me the Spurs fans anyday.

Simon Smith
106 Posted 06/03/2019 at 10:08:19
The atmosphere isn't booming at Goodison because there's very little to get upbeat about most seasons from around bonfire night.

We all want a great atmosphere during games, but how do you get up and make noise during a 1-1 draw to a side like Fulham when the best we can do is win and go 9th.

Fans expectations of the blues are set high, but there also realistic, we don't expect to win the league, especially with the current crop of players, but we expect to be top half all season and a cup run shouldn't be a big ask, especially when were going out to lower league sides.

Derek Knox
107 Posted 06/03/2019 at 10:20:24
Good points Simon, it's easy to put the onus on fans when things aren't going well, but like you say, fans are not going to cheer misplaced passes, and Keystone Cops defending.

A show of commitment against whoever the opposition is, one way of the getting the fans enthused.

Talk about bias toward the RS, I decided to watch the highlights again and selected youtube, the thumbnail was Everton v Liverpool, but just before the Match started it showed Liverpool v Everton.

Steve Ferns
108 Posted 06/03/2019 at 11:06:42
Jay, you can point to all the articles you want, Bielsa burnout is a very real thing. It is no myth. His teams find an exceptional level of performance, far beyond expectations (other than Bielsa's) and then they tail off dramatically. It has happened all the way back to NOB's. As you will know well, Argentina operated a system of giving out two titles a season, splitting the season into an opening half and a closing half. Bielsa won 3 Argentina titles by winning half seasons, not full seasons. Then he ended up at Argentina, where his brand of football was not well received due to his treatment of Riquelme. The hands on the hips, supremely gifted number 10, but strolling through games, is a hero to Argentina fans, but has no role in Bielsa's hard running system, and the fans didn't take too kindly to his efforts to drop him. This was the Argentina who played England in the 2002 World Cup. He had a degree of success there, before moving on to Chile and really establishing his reputation for the World to see by building a side around a handful of players who, perhaps down to Bielsa's coaching, went on to become world stars. Namely Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal.

His club career picks back up at Athletic Club Bilbao. As stated above, I always followed the club that Kendall left us for, especially when I got older and saw that they were a special club from a very interesting region. The Basques. We all know of ETA and with the way the Basques view Madrid, I saw some parallels to Liverpool. There's also a major port there. But what really fascinated and struck a cord with me was the cantera policy. Bilbao can only use players who are Basque. This now includes any Basques from the French side of the border, such as 1998 World Cup Winner Lizarazu. So, they can buy Basque's (mainly raiding their rivals Sociedad), but if they sell their players, as they often do, then they cannot replace them.

Bielsa saw a club that has always had the best youth policy in Spain for that very reason. And he built a side around a few household names, such as Fernando Llorente, Iker Muniain, Ander Herrera, and Javi Martinez. Only it was after Bielsa that they would go on to bigger and better things.

That first season he got off to a poor start, losing 3 and drawing the other 2. Then it clicked and he only lost 3 of the next 20 league games, before losing 7 of the last 13. It was in Europe that Bilbao really excelled with that memorable victory over Man Utd. They got to the UEFA Cup final but lost to Atletico, they also lost the Spanish Cup final to Barcelona. Then the vultures descended and picked off their best players in the summer, and as stated above, all the money in the world, with that cantera policy, does nothing for them, as they can only use it to pick up other Basque players off the other Basque clubs like Sociedad. But Real can have non-Basque players, and can replace the ones Athletic buy with non-Basque players. So sadly, the next season was no better.

2014 and Bielsa went to Marseille. He had an instant impact and they sat top of the table, above the rich PSG, on New Year's Day. They faded so badly they finished 4th. He started the new season but resigned after the first game.

2016 and Lazio, he didn't manage a game, walking out on "broken promises".

2017 and Lille, he came in to a club that had been 6th a year before he came in, and his brief was to get them back to there. Only he came in all guns blazing, and made the job impossible for himself. In true Bielsa style, he analysed and dissected all the games before he came in. He knew who he wanted rid of, and he told 11 players, 11 of the best players that he wanted rid. But like Everton, it was hard to get shut, big wages meant no one would take most of these under-performing players, and so they sat on the sidelines and whispered behind his back and sowed dissent. Lille failed spectacularly and were bottom. Beilsa's reputation was in tatters and whilst they finally won a couple of games and got off the bottom, he was suspended after 13 games and placed on gardening leave until being sacked in December. He played the players he ostracised for destabilising the team.

The reason he ended up at Leeds is not just that Lille damaged his reputation, it's that the guy loves a project. He wants the right club, with a great youth policy, as youth is key to his hard running tactics, to finally manage a club in Europe for more than his standard 18 months or so.

So, yes, there's lots of mitigating circumstances around the fact that he struggles to get a full 12 months out of his players in a hard club season, but the fact is, he's never done it.

He's an original in football. There's very few of them, even in history. And like most originals, they don't achieve the success. Instead, it's people who copy their ideas, water them down a bit, and fuse it with something else. A tempered Bielsa approach has been successful for Guardiola who fused it with the Cryuff tactics he grew up on. Pochettino calls him his footballing father, but he has never gone "full-Bielsa". Sampioli was his assistant at Chile, and is a chip off the old block, but whilst he did his best Bielsa impression as he brought glory to Chile (winning the 2015 and 2016 South American Championships) he did not employ a Bielsa style pressing game at Argentina, and flopped at the World Cup (though I would point to significant defensive deficiencies highlighted by the fact that Funes Mori getting a game in qualifying).

As much as I love Bielsa, he's now 63. He's rediscovered his passion at Leeds, and I hope he can finally finish a season strongly. I'd love him to bring a good club like Leeds back to the Premier League, and I'd love to see his antics in the Premier League. I still think his best days are behind him, namely 7 years ago.

Steve Ferns
109 Posted 06/03/2019 at 11:33:22
Beware Bielsa's Bilbao interesting article on the BBC from before the Man United game, that might be of interest to Blues as it quotes Howard Kendall a bit and refers to his time at Bilbao.
Dave Abrahams
110 Posted 06/03/2019 at 11:36:20
Darren (100), brilliant post! You know the “Old Lady” inside out, because like most of us you are infatuated with her and, as you say, that love will never fade even when we move to Bramley-Moore Dock.
Steve Ferns
111 Posted 06/03/2019 at 11:48:35
Back to Silva for me, not sure if anyone saw Robertson's comments before the Derby:

“Marco was big for me. He improved all of us when he came in at Hull. He is someone I always think kindly of but of course he is now at the local rivals! Obviously he came in and worked individually with all the players, but for me he brought me on defensively and going forward as well even if it was a short space of time. Every week was different. Marco does his research. I am probably part of that research now. He looks at every player his team is against and he can point out the strengths and weaknesses they have."

Note a now top class defender saying Silva improved him defensively.

Different reporter expands on the quote a bit more:

"He was big for me. When he came in he improved us all at Hull, you could see that by the results we got. We fell short in the end, but he was the one who gave us a chance, a fantastic manager who did a lot of good things."

Nicholas Ryan
112 Posted 06/03/2019 at 12:39:17
It's not often that I agree with Jim Bennings, but he's got it spot on in post No. 4; At 60 mins. Van Dijk and Robertson had a row in front of me; they were both clearly ‘losing it'.
Matthew Williams
113 Posted 06/03/2019 at 13:42:09
The noise from the Old Lady certainly came across loud and clear on local radio, superb atmosphere and the siren blast was pure quality. More of the same for our remaining home games will give our opponents a real tough time of it... maybe we can bag a few wins too!

Great to hear that Coleman fucking blanked them bastards in the tunnel also... more of that from our entire squad would really please me.

Onwards to the Toon, Blues!

Martin Nicholls
114 Posted 06/03/2019 at 14:02:30
Steve #111 – there's nothing unusual in a player extolling the virtues of a former manager or indeed in players (ours do it on a weekly basis!) praising their current manager. I prefer to reserve judgement on Silva's ability to improve individual players until I see sustained signs of such improvement in a significant number of OUR players.
Steve Ferns
115 Posted 06/03/2019 at 14:08:40
You don’t hear our players praising former managers often though, Martin. I can’t recall the last time any of them did. I’m sure there will be examples of it.

The point was, here is Robertson, another of Silva’s ex-players complimenting him and his coaching. I’ve still yet to see any of his former players have a bad word to say about him, and for me, that is unusual.

But yes, that all counts for nothing if he doesn’t improve them here. I just think it shows that he will, if we give him time.

Tony Abrahams
116 Posted 06/03/2019 at 14:46:32
I have to echo what Dave, said Darren, because I know for sure I’m not alone, when I say Goodison, is in my soul!

My mate was trying to give me stick last week, saying it was all over Twitter about Everton, telling everyone to get in early, because we were having a flag day. He said he had a picture of twelve Everton flags, and you could just tell none of the them were off scousers.

Not really a scouse thing I said laughing, and I honestly think he didn’t get the irony.

John G Davies
117 Posted 06/03/2019 at 15:09:28
Darren @100,

Tell you what, my old sparring partner, that's some post you put up there. Blood-stirring stuff. I feel like I could run through a brick wall after reading that.

Stan Schofield
118 Posted 06/03/2019 at 16:26:24
Darren @100: I'll echo what John has just said @117. Great post.

You're spot on. You can close you eyes and imagine, and can still feel the hairs rising. I still think about matches 50 years ago with a 60,000 gate, and it can make a grown man cry.

Like you, I wasn't there on Sunday, but wish I had been.

Tony Abrahams
119 Posted 06/03/2019 at 16:44:19
JP@81, I can’t remember what formation Spurs, played at Goodison, but I know Wolves, played 3 centre backs and dominated us for long periods of the game.

They pulled us all over the place, and always looked to have an extra player on the pitch, and I think it’s because, sometimes we look to be playing exactly the same way, but with one less defender on the pitch.

We try and play a similar system, but have much less cover defensively because we only have two central defenders on the pitch. So I’m with you and think it’s got to be better to play 3 at the back, until Silva can get players who can play his required system, the way he wants it to be played?

Mike Galley
120 Posted 06/03/2019 at 16:56:06
Just like to add to some of the comments regarding the Old Lady, atmosphere etc (Darren 100, I've just come over all goosebumpery!!!!).

I remember a European game against Fiorentina under Moyes, when we nearly pulled of a great comeback after a 2-0 away defeat. The atmosphere was incredible. Shades of the Bayern game.

A Man Utd fan in work who watched the game said you could feel the atmosphere through the TV screen. He asked where did it come from and I replied that a genuine stadium atmosphere shouldn't be artificially manufactured but should be created by a sense of hope (or defiance!), the opposition or even the importance of the outcome.

The Man Utd fans a good lad, I made these comments for the benefit of the RS that where in our company, but I think the gist of them went right over there heads though!

Anyway, Everton being Everton, we lost on pens :-(

Tony Abrahams
121 Posted 06/03/2019 at 16:56:42
JP@81, I can’t remember what formation Spurs, played at Goodison, but I know Wolves, played 3 centre backs and dominated us for long periods of the game.

They pulled us all over the place, and always looked to have an extra player on the pitch, and I think it’s because, sometimes we look to be playing exactly the same way, but with one less defender on the pitch.

We try and play a similar system, but have much less cover defensively because we only have two central defenders on the pitch. So I’m with you and think it’s got to be better to play 3 at the back, until Silva can get players who can play his required system, the way he wants it to be played?

Tony Abrahams
122 Posted 06/03/2019 at 17:04:52
Steve@108, I used to love watching that Bilbao team play mate. They had a sense of togetherness, great skill (look at that 2nd goal) great speed and great energy (the third goal) and I think this style of football will always be admired by people who love the beautiful game?

I hope Leeds come up, and I look forward to watching them if they do. Biasla’s energy, seems like a great fit for the passion of Leeds Utd, and if they do get promoted, I’m sure this style of football will go down great, and also surprise a lot teams next season?

Rob Halligan
123 Posted 06/03/2019 at 17:05:45
Darren, Scouser Tommy who "lay on the battlefield dying dying dying" must have been a blue, because we all know you will never "Spot a Scouser on the kop"

Also how all those Norwegians get through the metal detectors at the airports with a thousand badges pinned to their scarves, is beyond me. Gobsbite bellends, the lot of em.

Mike Gaynes
124 Posted 06/03/2019 at 17:08:09
Rob, having ridden with trainloads of them both ways on my last visit, I can vouch for that!
Rob Halligan
125 Posted 06/03/2019 at 17:10:59
I pity you, Mike. Next time go first class on the train, or fly up from London to Manchester. I'll pick you up at Manchester Airport.
Keith Harrison
126 Posted 06/03/2019 at 18:26:57
Cheaper hiring a Limo from Euston, Mike, than letting Rob give you a lift at a 'competitive rate'! 😎😎
Jay Wood

127 Posted 06/03/2019 at 19:39:44
Steve @ 108.

I think you've shifted the focus from my original post to you way back @ 53 in which I raised 2 points in answer to you introducing Bielsa into this thread:

1) sharing links with you to the very good article and podcast on the BBC site which offers an alternative view to your original claim that 'Bielsa is no longer the coach he once was and that his methods are dated', implying he is no longer effective or relevant, when clearly his work at Leeds this season shows otherwise.

2) as a counter example to your claims that 'it is unrealistic to expect a manager to transform a club in his first season.'

In that post I made absolutely no reference to 'Bielsa Burnout'. That is something YOU introduced into our exchanges, which I have subsequently responded to.

I posted a single link with a very in-depth article to counter your claim that Bielsa burnout is a very real thing. You continue to claim it is not a myth, but offer no supporting evidence other than repeating your own opinion. No problem Steve.

But as you yourself note, a bulk of Bielsa’s managerial experience is with two national teams. Claims that they suffered burnout under Bielsa can be dismissed as the players simply weren't with him long enough to experience it.

In your latest post to me you, in the main, offer little or no evidence of the Bielsa Burnout effect, but rather list his idiosyncrasies in leaving clubs early because he considered promises made weren't kept and being the man of principle that he is, he walked rather than compromise. Another aspect of the man altogether.

You are well versed on the peculiarities of Athletic Club Bilbao and the small player pool they can recruit from. Even with such limitations and a small squad, as my linked article shows, he worked miracles in getting them to the EUFA cup final and Copa Del Rey, where they lost both games heavily. Again, as my linked article shows, it was more the number of games a small squad with little chance of rotation played that season - 65 - that did for them in the end, NOT some systemic failing on Bielsa's methods as you present.

You yourself acknowledge "there's lots of mitigating circumstances around the fact that he struggles to get a full 12 months out of his players in a hard club season."

IMO, that doesn't equate to proof positive that the SOLE reason for this is the 'Bielsa Burnout' as you seem to be contesting.

It is interesting also that you are now quoting former Silva players on how he improved them. I don’t think it is unreasonable to state that based on his time at Everton to date we have yet to see an exponential improvement of any of our individual players, or the team as a whole, under Silva’s stewardship.

Bielsa, by contrast this season, has significantly improved both individuals and the collective of pretty much the same squad as he inherited at Leeds.

I don’t think it is extreme to conclude that one has over-delivered in his first season to date. The other hasn’t.

Thus my original response. The ‘Bielsa Burnout’ claims is a sideshow you introduced, Steve. Not me.

Steve Ferns
128 Posted 06/03/2019 at 21:02:44
Jay, you took me to task on his methods being dated. They are. You cannot respond to that so you keep moving the goalposts. You go on about other aspects of his management that are superb, and agree they are. But his coaching is dated. Doesn't mean he's not a good coach, it just means he's not the pioneer he once was. His ideas are not fresh, but they can still be effective.

You also keep going on about Bielsa Burnout. It is real. I point as cold hard irrefutable evidence to every single season he has had in European club football and that not once, not once, has he ever finished a season strongly. Sadly, it looks very much like it's happening again at Leeds. I really hope he can get things back on track and get Leeds up.

I say again, I love the guy, I really do, I am a massive fan of his. He's my favourite non-Everton manager. He's the one who inspired me to watch videos on YouTube of every training session he did with Bilbao that was posted up there, I must have sat and watched over 100 videos of him coaching the players, from cameras fixed in the stands, as Kendall points out, Bilbao have about 500 fans watching the training sessions.

Bilbao are a very successful club Jay. Bielsa didn't quite work miracles. They are used to success. They have never ever been relegated. They have won more Spanish Cups than Real Madrid, only Barca have won more. Only the current big 3 in Spain have won more than their 8 La Liga titles. Bielsa took them to 10th and 12th in the League, the season immediately before they were 6th, so he actually dropped them 4 places. They were in the Europa League because of what Joaquín Caparrós did. Immediately after Bielsa left they finished 4th, 7th, 5th, and 7th. This is Bilbao's level. Bilbao fans did not see any miracles. They had some fun with manager who gave them some great memories, but ultimately they are a club who win things, like Everton, and so winning nothing, like Moyes at Everton, is ultimately failure.

I was enthralled at the way Bielsa coaches his team's "spontaneous movement", actually drilling this into them on the training pitch, the phased moves, and how he programs his players to make certain runs without thinking, and how they can pass into certain areas knowing a man will shortly arrive there. Bielsa is open with other managers and coaches, which is why the spying incident and the things written about him in the English press was very sad. He lets other managers come and watch (obviously not his immediate opponents), he helps them and lets them try to understand his thinking. This is why so many copied him, he makes it easy to do so. But football has moved on in the last 8 years or so, others have perfected the pressing game without having the same flaws, they have won things with it, whilst Bielsa has not.

As for Silva not improving players, yes he has. Jordan Pickford is better than last season, he is also better than at Sunderland. Seamus Coleman is better than last season, though probably down to recovery from injury. Michael Keane is much better than last season and is in the best form I've seen from him. If you saw more of him at Burnley and think he was better then, that's for you to argue, but this is the best Michael Keane I've ever seen. This is also the best Kurt Zouma, much better than last season, and even better than before he did his knee. It is also the best Lucas Digne. Silva's biggest transformation is Idrissa Gueye who seems to get better and better with every game, and is pulling skills out of his locker I never knew he had. Andre Gomes is better than he's been for some time, a different player to the raw lad I saw for Benfica, and approaching his form for Valencia, before he had a dip in form. Richarlison was better earlier in the season, but that was the form of his life, and without Silva at the end of last season, he was terrible. So Silva is the one improving him into a Brazilian international. Dominic Calvert-Lewin is better than ever, his all round game is really coming on, and particularly his link up play, he's also scored more goals this season than ever before (in PL at least) and there's still 9 games left.

Silva is making the players better, you wait for next season and you'll see it too. I also see major jumps in Davies' game, but he's not played enough recently to showcase the improvements properly. I predict we're seeing the rebirth of Morgan Schneiderlin and that he will be rehabilitated come the end of the season. Schneiderlin looks happy, big smiles, less sulks, and as there's always been a player in there, perhaps Silva is about to bring him back to his very best.

Jamie Crowley
129 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:06:26
Mikey Gaynes @ somewhere re Schneiderlin,

I thought he was excellent. As I mentioned, I saw one mistake in the RS game.

He protected the back 4, his ball to Seamus against Cardiff was sublime, his passing more than acceptable, his workrate increased to my eyes (still needs to move quicker sometimes after a pass), and he freed up space for Gueye to "be Gueye" and run all over the place and break shit up.

You don't like Schneiderlin. You've commented previously when I praised him. I think we'll agree to disagree.

We agreed on Gana when Gana caught shit from people on TW. We just aren't going to agree on Schneids the last two games. My definition of excellent is in comparison to previous and absolute shit from Morgan, so the use of that word is more in reference to previous performances / percentage increase, if you get my drift.

Plus I'm prone to hyperbole, so there's that.

I'm honestly surprised you don't agree I have to say. I only saw one error - as I said a bad one. Any others weren't near bad enough to register on the "Crowley radar". Insofar as good plays in the derby, he was very tidy and allowed Gana to move around a lot. Good plays like the Coleman pass against Cardiff? No. But we look a lot more balanced with him in the side to me the last two games.

I might have a re-watch and look for specifics.

Jay Wood

130 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:08:02
Steve @ 128:

"Jay, you took me to task on his methods being dated."

Seriously? These are the opening words of my first post to you @ 73, responding to the claims you introduced to the thread about Bielsa @ 53:

"Being a keen student of the game and as someone who has written glowingly of Bielsa, if you haven't done so already I suggest you read and listen to the following article and podcast on the Beeb.

"You might care to review your opinion that he is not the coach he once was and that his methods are extremely dated."

You consider those words as 'taking you to task', Steve? Seriously.

You continue to insist Bielsa's methods are dated. You say that I "cannot respond to that so [I] keep moving the goalposts."

Again Steve, seriously..? A couple of things here:

1) By what, or whose authority, are you claiming Bielsa's methods are dated? Is there a FIFA committee that sits and rules on such things? You yourself acknowledge he has many imitators in the game who modify what he innovated, including THE very best coaches in the world. I am quite sure the man himself modifies his own methods depending on the material he is given to work with: the players.

2) The implication of your claim that his coaching is 'extremely dated' is that it cannot be successful TODAY. As I keep pointing out to you, Leeds are having their best season since relegation from the PL I don't know how many years ago.

From this I conclude the following: even if what you say about Bielsa's coaching being 'extremely dated' is true, how does that explain the undeniable success he is achieving with Leeds this season?

It's a non-sequitur, surely?

If you did but recognize it, you actually acknowledge the same in your last post when you write:

"...his coaching is dated. Doesn't mean he's not a good coach, it just means he's not the pioneer he once was. His ideas are not fresh, but they can still be effective."

Saying he is not the pioneer he once was is a clear 'moving of the goal posts' on your part and a different discussion altogether from the one we've been having, whilst your second clause agrees with one of my original points: Bielsa and his methods are still effective.

As for your charge that I "keep moving the goalposts" in our exchanges in this thread, not true Steve. I've already quoted above the original two points I made to you. In my last post to you I quoted them again to keep you on point, rather than drifting off into side discussions as you clearly do, such as your claims of 'Bielsa Burnout'...but you switch this around to claim that I'M the one 'going on about Bielsa Burnout', when it was YOU that introduced that sub-theme and I simply responded to it, even linking a very well researched piece to challenge what you claim is 'cold hard irrefutable evidence'.

How can it be 'irrefutable evidence' when I present a very well researched and reasoned alternative view to the 'Bielsa Burnout' moniker YOU threw into the discussion?

You do have a tendency to deal in 'absolutes' Steve and don't take kindly to legitimate alternative views.

The driving motivation for you in all this, as it has been all season, is your determination to 'Stand By Your Man', Silva. Admirable on one level. Flawed on another.

Take your latest appendage in your previous post in which you accuse me of stating Silva has not improved players in his time at Everton.

These were my actual words in making a comparison of Silva's and Bielsa's performances this season:

"It is interesting also that you [Steve] are now quoting former Silva players on how he improved them. I don’t think it is unreasonable to state that based on his time at Everton to date we have yet to see an exponential improvement of any of our individual players, or the team as a whole, under Silva’s stewardship.

"Bielsa, by contrast this season, has significantly improved both individuals and the collective of pretty much the same squad as he inherited at Leeds.

"I don’t think it is extreme to conclude that one has over-delivered in his first season to date. The other hasn’t."

Do you consider my words contentious? Radical? False?

It is mischievous (at best) of you to misrepresent my words as out-and-out saying 'Silva has not improved the players at Everton'. I did nothing of the sort.

You compound that distortion by claiming that under Silva:

* "Jordan Pickford is better than last season" (again, seriously???). Last season he was the runaway leader of 3 player-of-the-year awards: fans and players' player of the year, plus the young player of the year. Do you seriously believe his performances are better this season? Do you seriously think he is going to get anywhere near to retaining any of those 3 trophies this season?

I suppose you might Steve, as you keep telling us Jordan is playing to instructions from his manager to stay on his line rather than dominate his penalty area.

* "Seamus Coleman is better than last season, though probably down to recovery from injury". Again, seriously? He has played well since being recalled in the last two games. Before that he was dropped with plenty - and I mean PLENTY - of doubters as to whether he could return to his pre-leg break form and level.

* "Michael Keane is much better than last season." Agreed. But we also now know there were considerable mitigating circumstances (his playing through long term injury) as to why he was so poor last season. His improvement this season could simply be down to being fit to play.

Furthermore, to name Keane and Kurt Zouma as Silva's 'successes' in improving players is quite amusing as, very, very recently (as a way to defend Silva and explain our poor defensive record) you described both as 'shite' at heading.

And it is jaw-dropping that you also list Idrissa Gueye as a 'Silva success story' given post after post after post of scathing dismissal from you of the player all season.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin is better than ever? Disagree. DC-L is a player I like and constantly defend, but I don't think he has kicked on as much this season as last when for a time he was running Pickford close for the young player of the year award.

And yet you accuse me of moving the goal posts..? Right-ho!

Mike Jones
131 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:14:09
Jay #130.

Have you retired to Brazil? How can one man have so much time to comment... and in such depth?

Are there no beaches where you are?

John Keating
132 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:23:05
Mike, don't slag Jay.

He's the only one who can reply to Steve's 300-page essays. Well, stay awake through them.

Steve Ferns
133 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:26:35
Jay, Bielsa's methods are dated. I understand from your post that I now have to call a FIFA committee to be allowed to have such an opinion, so I shall petition FIFA immediately, I hope to get back to you with the findings of said committee as soon as they convene.

Do I need to hold a committee to consider the burnout too, or can the facts speak for themselves on that one?

Jay Wood

134 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:46:28
Steve @ 133.

Well done, Steve for focusing on my obvious and deliberate irony re: the FIFA committee, rather than address the many valid counters I make to some of your comments.

Probably unknowingly (again) you now acknowledge your views on Bielsa are 'opinions', rather than 'cold hard irrefutable facts' as you described them in your previous post.

But you can't help yourself and revert to type and yet again confuse what constitutes fact vs opinion on the Bielsa Burnout question at the death.

Steve Ferns
135 Posted 06/03/2019 at 23:54:50
Every single season, Jay. Every single one. You can't get more irrefutable than that.
Derek Thomas
136 Posted 07/03/2019 at 00:11:10
Steve, Ideas may be 'no longer new' aka, old or even 'dated'. But, in reality, there are only two methods: those that work and there may be more than one way to do something... and those that don't.

His are working at the moment... The point is they may not work for everyone every time... neither may Silva's.

Steve Ferns
137 Posted 07/03/2019 at 00:14:40
Very true, Derek. But let's not forget that Leeds have lost 3 of the last 8, have been passed by Norwich and had dropped to third. Their form is faltering already.
Don Alexander
138 Posted 07/03/2019 at 02:36:50
Silva's comments are very 21st Century where millionaire players and managers abound. Me, I prefer the Alan Ball approach.

When asked what he thought of supporters criticism of him when he was playing for us he said, "I agree with them but I don't need them to make me realise I played poorly. I know it myself and it's up to me to do something about it." Quite so.

And Steve Ferns, don't even think you can educate our man in Brazil on the difference between fact and opinion. Rather like dear Darren, it's impossible.

Jamie Crowley
139 Posted 07/03/2019 at 04:22:08
I'm honestly curious.

We know Steve Ferns is an attorney.

Jay Wood, what is it that you do professionally?

Genuinely curious.

The two of you arguing is like watching a courtroom drama made for television.

The two of you will dissect an argument, and all the various points and minutiae, to a level that is barely sustainable by mere mortals.

I have the patience to address 1 to 2 opposing points of view. How you do it is a wonder. I'd lose patience after the third paragraph there or thereabouts.

The next time I'm ever involved in signing a contract of any type, I will literally hire the both of you to go through it and tell me how to proceed. I know you'll cover ever single point and issue.

That's a compliment for the record, not some back-handed bullshit stab. I find your levels of detail incredible.

Mike Gaynes
140 Posted 07/03/2019 at 05:57:15
"...a courtroom drama made for television."

Courtroom, definitely. Drama? Eh, not so much.

Anthony Flack
141 Posted 07/03/2019 at 07:46:34
Courtroom drama - more amazing is the drift into philosophy. Difference between fact and opinion - maybe take a quick look at Plato who rattled on about this and knowledge... talking about the table or bed, can't remember which.

ToffeeWeb is getting very high-end! 😜

Total aside, I'm currently in Madrid which is in a near state of shock about Real – I can't find many Athletico fans but the Barcelona fans are enjoying it a bit.

Laurie Hartley
142 Posted 07/03/2019 at 08:10:27
Mike # 140 - I agree, it’s a bit mundane for me.

This is more to my liking:

Court Room Drama

I’m going on Netflix ;)

Peter Mills
143 Posted 07/03/2019 at 09:38:29
Going back to the topic of this thread, it was indeed great to be part of a rocking Goodison on Sunday. I was desperate for us to get a late winner, just so those who have never experienced it could feel the stadium shake.

Previous occasions mentioned, like the Fiorentina game and the never to be forgotten Bayern night, will stay with us forever. I also have a special place in my heart for the Saturday afternoon in late March 1970, when we took on a fine Chelsea side on the run-in to the title. Nerves were jangling before kick-off, but calmed after 14 seconds as Howard Kendall scored from the kick-off. 3 minutes later Bally nodded a second, and pandemonium ensued.

We won 5-2, then most of the crowd stayed behind to find out how Leeds had got on. The stadium announcer finally piped up “And now for the result you have all been waiting for – Cambridge have won the Boat Race”. Some rude words emanated before they were replaced by a mighty roar as the score “Leeds 1 Southampton 3” came out.

If and when we leave Goodison, it will be a tough day, and the souls of many departed will be joining us for it.

Keith Young
144 Posted 07/03/2019 at 10:10:33
This is a message for Jamie Crowley and John Keating.

Gentlemen, my paternal Grandma's maiden name was Hannah Crowley of Cork and my maternal Grandfather was Sydney Keating of Cork. Both families lived in Leadenhall Street, Everton. Are we related?

I'm Keith Young, Everton shareholder and Evertonian since 1948.

Jamie Crowley
145 Posted 07/03/2019 at 14:23:30

Our Crowleys have been over in America since the very late 1800s.

My Great, Great Grandfather, Joseph Crowley, left County Cork for America via Liverpool, England and landed in the 1890s I believe.

We've been over so long that, if you and I are related, it's very distant, friend.

Mike Gaynes
146 Posted 07/03/2019 at 14:55:35
Pete #143, that gave me my morning laugh.
Billy Roberts
147 Posted 07/03/2019 at 20:13:31
Laurie @142, Thanks for that link, what a scene!! Here's me thinking I was a Pacino fan but admittedly I gave this courtroom drama a swerve, it's funny to think that today's films are full of swearing!!

And to get this onto a relevant football theme imagine him in the changing rooms, I suppose I just answered my own question as I have now remembered Pacino's famous speech in Any Given Sunday, was it?

if you could post that link Laurie we could send both as a motivational tool before the Newcastle game to the club in case the team have slipped back into their comatose state.

Bobby Mallon
148 Posted 07/03/2019 at 20:21:05
So Solskjar has gone back to Ferguson's methods and is doing fabulous. It's not about being outdated, it's about having a style that suits your players... At the moment, Silva's methods don't suit our players.
Laurie Hartley
149 Posted 07/03/2019 at 20:38:19
Billy #147 - Here is the link to the speech you at looking for:

Any given Sunday Speech

It made me wonder what Marco Silva’s style is when he talks to the players before the game.

John Pierce
150 Posted 07/03/2019 at 20:40:09
Bobby, I think this a very sound observation. In trying to run before he can even crawl, he has not correctly assessed what he has. Only when results became so poor has he decided a less expansive approach is required. I think that was less him and more the noises from other parts of the club.

Many have called for forbearance in his methods to bear fruit. Yet he hasn't shown any patience at all. Gone all out hung-ho, mistakenly writing off players before he has time to change the personnel.

Time will tell, but his tactical intransigence might well see him booted out.

Billy Roberts
151 Posted 07/03/2019 at 20:58:31
Thank you, Laurie, I'm currently in my local (Mossley Hill Sports Club) where I escape my kids and dog but I will wait to get home to view it in all its glory! I wish Moyes could have come up with something like that when it mattered!

Like someone brilliantly said on this site Everton always win the game after the game they should have won, and Martinez btw.

John Keating
160 Posted 07/03/2019 at 22:30:31
Keith 144,

Our direct descendant Henry Keating came over to Everton from Dublin about 1839. No Sydney's in that line since then.

Maybe Henry had other brothers but we can't trace records prior to Henry on our line.

Don Alexander
162 Posted 07/03/2019 at 23:34:14
Peter (#143), I was at that Chelsea match and, for the only time in my life, my owd feller bought us a seat in the Gwladys Street stands, right behind the goal.

A young Roger Kenyon had replaced Labby and Peter Osgood in the second half decided to try to nobble the sprog by slyly kicking hell out of Roger's shins and ankles as a corner was to be taken from the Church corner. Before the corner arrived a little delay was caused by Osgood having to be carried off on a stretcher!

Roger took no prisoners, ever. An acquaintance of mine who played pro football in his time told me, not realising I was a Toffee, that Kenyon was the hardest player he'd ever played against and – given that he'd played against Hunter, Smith, Harris and the like – that's some, erm, accolade.

Paul Birmingham
163 Posted 08/03/2019 at 21:50:45
Darren@100, poetic justice and immortal words, stirring testimony of Everton and being an Evertonian.

Epic words, ma8, and truly inspirational.

We breathe, eat and that’s what this club means. It’s immortal and does in my view carry our destinies in life’s adventure. Only The Best Is Good Enough

What ever, where ever, as a club, we are, you know with Evertonians, your in good company, as football supporters.

That’s there with the Epochs and Poets, of ages, that’s pure Evertonian, best by far.

Onwards and Upwards, Evertonians!

Paul Birmingham
164 Posted 08/03/2019 at 22:09:53
Not to forget, the great day in 10.1984, when Sharpys special done them, at our old ground.

In my time a Golden month, we done Manure home and old League Cup at OT, and the RS, that was special.

We’ve never got close in modern times, but fixtures now are different.

Anfield Road, Into the Kemlyn Road and at least, half the Kop, we did steal back our old ground that day, as we did a few times, in the 80s and when got blatantly robbed In the injury time Wayne Clark’e header into the Anfield Road goal.

And Shaggys winner League Cup winner, very close to full time, may be 5 mins, from the end, 25 yard daisy cutter, into the corner of the Clowns goal, into the Kop, for above par at that time, in 10/1987

Yes at that time we were better, than them. Happy, happy days, and life changes, and then, where has time gone?

The greatest days, home and away, and always a good laugh.

Now to remix the mortar of our great club and build a solid foundation for the future.

We all have given, all and more than humanly possible for the EFC, cause, and now for the resurrection, in football terms, of EFC.


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