None So Blind As Those Who Will Not See

The incomplete summer recruitment made for less than ideal circumstances this season but none of Everton's personnel issues, even in aggregate, really account for how poor the team has been. That is clearly down to other factors that ultimately rest at the feet of the manager.

Lyndon Lloyd 08/10/2019 241comments  |  Jump to last

When you look at the Premier League table after eight games of the new season, with Everton sitting in the relegation zone, you could be forgiven for feeling a little foolish for believing that the Blues could break into the top six this season. After all, Evertonians have seen enough false dawns in recent years that they can almost set their calendars by them and it was only a few months ago that Marco Silva’s nascent reign was in disarray, beset by a multitude of problems that he seemed unable to solve.

And yet, in the wake of an unexpectedly productive run of results to end last season — particularly at home where they put together the string of victories that came to a shuddering halt against Sheffield United last month — some encouraging moves made in the transfer market, and the fact that Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal were all trying to find their feet under their own recent appointments, was Evertonian optimism prior to the beginning of the season all that mis-placed?

Yes, pre-season was concerning but so was Silva’s first summer and the team actually started the 2018-19 season well enough before everything went off the rails in December. Yes, the squad was weakened by the almost incalculable loss of Idrissa Gueye and his nominal replacement, Jean-Philippe Gbamin, was cruelly struck down by a serious quad problem before he could make a third appearance for the Blues, but Fabian Delph returned from his own injury in time to at least partially compensate.

And if there were concerns over the time that would be needed to bed in those players, like Moise Kean and Alex Iwobi, who were signed late in the window, then that adjustment period appeared to have been handed to Everton in the form of as comfortable a start to the season as you could probably hope for. When you consider just how poor Manchester United have been, the issues that appear to be multiplying at Tottenham, and the unfashionable names of some of the clubs occupying the top seven heading into the international break, the Toffees’ top-six prospects didn’t look so fanciful at the outset after all.

Yet here we are once again, after the horror shows against Sheffield United and Burnley, embroiled in another crisis after an insipid display at Turf Moor. The life of an Evertonian, eh? Slapped back down by the footballing gods or seemingly cursed by some unknown past misdeed; back in the cycle of analysis and angst, rumination and recrimination, fear and frustration.

The Carabao Cup win at Sheffield Wednesday had offered some hope that Silva could turn things around… and there were a few glimmers of positivity to take from the performance (even in defeat) against Manchester City (even if they’re somewhat lessened by what Norwich and Wolves did to the Champions either side of their visit to Goodison Park) that might have bolstered morale among a group of players whom their manager recently described as “nervous” and prone to “hiding”. But the issues that surfaced during three defeats from four very winnable games in the Premier League were unmistakable against Burnley.

It’s hard to believe we’re back here again but there’s a real possibility that Farhad Moshiri and Marcel Brands will shortly have to make an important decision over the manager’s future, perhaps before Everton next kick a ball in anger.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

As Evertonians have searched their souls in recent days, some have cited the mess inherited by Silva and Brands when they arrived at the club in the spring of last year as being the root cause of this latest collapse. The mis-steps in the transfer market under their predecessors, which saw a number of misfit players acquired for big money and tied to expensive contracts, have been well documented and there’s no denying that they have made life difficult for both the director of football and the manager as far as recruitment goes.

They required the Dutchman to trim a bloated squad, reducing both numbers and the salary burden — something that he has managed to do quite successfully — even if a few fringe players with no chance at first-team football remain at Finch Farm, kicking their heels on matchdays.

An almost universally popular figure in his first year at Everton, Brands has now, for the first time, come in for criticism for the fact that Everton finished the summer 2019 transfer window without ample cover at centre-half and, arguably, short of options up front where the Romelu Lukaku’s reliable goals have yet to be replaced.

The thing is, though, Brands is operating in accordance with a longer-term vision, one hidebound to a degree by finances, and in the context of Everton’s run-in to finish 2018-19, his close-season transfer business wasn’t as bad as some have made out. Given the way the Blues finished last season, there must have been a feeling among the management that the team that ended last season just needed targeted additions, not significant surgery, in order to be competitive in pursuit of European places this term.

It appeared as though there were enough goals in the side to allow for an untried teenager from Juventus to be gradually bedded in, and that the addition of Iwobi would add that touch more creativity to a side that had beaten three of the top six in those last few weeks of the campaign, and was in form worthy of that “elite” group over the final weeks of the campaign.

The glaring omission was the failure to account for Chelsea’s insistence on retaining Zouma but the concern over the lack of cover there was only expected to be justified in the event either Michael Keane or Yerry Mina got injured – and that’s a time-bomb that still has still to go off.

Still, there are some mitigating circumstances regarding personnel that would have undermined Everton’s top-six tilt this season regardless. Kean is slowly adapting to a foreign league butwith the added disadvantage of being just 19 and still very raw in terms of top-level experience; André Gomes, a key figure in the line-up, missed almost four games through injury; Gylfi Sigurdsson’s form has dropped off a cliff; while Keane and Mina appear to make an uneasy partnership given how similar they are.

While they certainly make for less than ideal circumstances, none of these personnel issues, even in aggregate, really accounts for how poor Everton have been, particularly in the defeats to Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Sheffield United and Burnley. (Would it help if there was a goalscoring centre-forward leading the line? Probably, but that would mask deeper-lying issues around coaching and tactics.) They are factors that would explain why if, say for example, the team had started the season by only drawing those three opening away games at Selhurst Park, Villa Park and the Vitality Stadium and dropped points at home against Watford or Wolves; they’re not enough to explain the debacle that the Toffees’ start to 2019-20 has become, at least in the Premier League.

No, that is clearly down to other factors that ultimately rest at the feet of the manager. You only have to look at the fact that it is the inferior squads of Burnley and Crystal Palace currently sitting in sixth and seventh place respectively, and not Everton, to see that this isn’t just an issue of personnel and incomplete summer transfer business. Even if it had modestly under-achieved during the first eight games, this expensively-expensive team should, after the kind fixture list so far, be in or around the top six; instead, they’re in the bottom three, in the exact position they were in when Moshiri fired Ronald Koeman.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The point has been made recently that one of Marco Silva’s issues where the fans are concerned is that there is no relationship there; that the Portuguese’s relative obscurity and lack of public interaction means that there is no love between the manager and the supporters. There’s merit to the argument vis-a-vis fostering a feeling of togetherness at Everton but the reality is that the manager could engender all the good feeling he needs simply by getting results on the pitch.

Roberto Martinez threw himself into the Everton role with endearing enthusiasm, immersing himself in the club’s history and traditions and, in concert with then Director of Communications, Alan Myers, opened a dialogue with fans groups with on-site interviews at Finch Farm and appearances at public events. It counted for very little, however, when the chips were down and the Blues’ players were downing tools at places like Anfield, the Stadium of Light and the King Power Stadium in the waning days of his tenure.

No, the fans’ biggest problem with Silva is his bewildering refusal to change or to try much that is different at all despite everything and everyone crying out for just that. The well-worn statistics around his pig-headed adherence to zonal marking are being inked onto the epitaph of his Everton reign: Silva’s Hull, Watford and Everton teams have let in 45 goals from set-pieces, with the Toffees having conceded more goals from set-pieces than any other team in the Premier League.

[Where the dead-ball vulnerabilities are concerned, there is a belief that Silva’s former assistant, Joao Pedro Sousa (whose team now sit atop the Portuguese league above the likes of Benfica and Porto), was the man chiefly responsible for coaching the players on the defensive side and all the evidence points to the manager struggling now without him.]

He has the lowest win ratio of any Blues boss since Walter Smith, fewer points than Koeman after eight games in October 2017 prior to the Dutchman’s dismissal, and has the damning record of his side having failed to come from behind to win a league match in 22 “attempts”.

And none of this has really been attributable to any grand exercise in experimentation, adventure or imagination. Silva has persisted with the same, rigid and unproductive system with largely the same players in every game — 4-2-3-1 with Sigurdsson in the No 10 role and two holding midfielders, home and away, regardless of the opposition or their shape. The only area where there has been change is up front where the Portuguese has chopped and changed between Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Moise Kean and Cenk Tosun with little in the way of results.

Sigurdsson has been an awkward fit at Goodison Park ever since Everton signed him two years ago but his goals and assists at least made the case for his inclusion last season. Not so this term — so far, he has failed to register a single goal and has just one assist to his name. The intensifying clamour from fans for Silva to at least try something different — 4-3-3 or a different player in that No 10 position — has been met by a maddening status quo so far. That, more than his relative inexperience and dispassionate demeanour on the sidelines, will worry the owner and fans alike.

The concern is that, even if Silva keeps his job and were to take these changes on board and make them, why has it taken him this long and for things to get so bad before he either figured it out or was shown the errors of his intransigence? It doesn't bode well for the next occasion when things start to go wrong, nor does it paint a picture of a man capable of outwitting and tactically out-manoeuvring the country’s or the Continent’s best — if and when the time comes.

Of course, no analysis of Everton’s current malaise could be complete without acknowledging the responsibility borne by the players. Despite the supposed leadership brought to the table by the likes of Seamus Coleman, Fabian Delph and Gylfi Sigurdsson and the experience of players like Morgan Schneiderlin, there is a clear lack of leadership and on-field inspiration.

Whether it comes from a dispiriting shortage of both qualities from the dugout, despair at just how to navigate their way out of their poor current form, or they just don’t care enough, is impossible to know… but guts and determination, while not a panacea, can partially make up for a shortage of talent or managerial direction, particularly in games that Everton should be winning.

It’s galling, really, because there is plenty of talent in this squad. Hyperbole among the online Everton community that this is the worst team they’ve ever seen is just that; this is a good side — albeit one still lacking some star quality in attacking midfield and a reliable goalscorer — being badly managed. How much longer it continues is up to the owner and the Board but their patience must be wearing thin.

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Reader Comments (241)

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Karl Masters
1 Posted 08/10/2019 at 01:19:15
We have very similar problems to Man Utd – a lack of goals and a lack of on-field leaders.

That scenario happened once before – in the Autumn of 1983 and look what happened very soon after. I'd be surprised if lightning struck twice – are we going to sign an Andy Gray and find a Peter Reid?

For Silva it must be maddening to watch how poor we are at times, for me it is maddening listening to his interviews, barely understandable English and seemingly defiant at being asked any questions at all. If he communicates that incoherently with the players, that could have a lot to do with it.

It's tough (yet again) being an Evertonian.

Bill Watson
2 Posted 08/10/2019 at 02:02:05
The fact that Silva had a similar slump last season and seemingly had no answer for over two months is very worrying. Even during the 'good' run towards the end of last season we had the debacles at Newcastle and Fulham.

We have the worst team for years but also have, possibly, the best squad of players. This, surely, rests with the manager and his selections, his rigid tactical set ups, which are pretty much the same whoever we are playing, and his continuing poor substitutions.

He doesn't learn from his mistakes and the statistic of failing to recover, to win, from the 22 games we've gone behind in is the most damning.

Sooner, or later, he will be dismissed. Best to do it now before the damage is irretrievable.

Stan Schofield
3 Posted 08/10/2019 at 02:09:31
We need a fast CH and an experienced striker. We could change the manager, but it will likely change nothing significantly unless we address those shortages. So forget about changing the manager yet again, and address the shortages. It's not rocket science.
Minik Hansen
4 Posted 08/10/2019 at 02:45:11
I remember when I started watching club football and started supporting Everton in 2007. My real first season was in 08/09. I remember the first few years Everton were scraping at the bottom come October and then started picking up in November and eventually finished fifth. I pray to God we can turn things around this time again. No matter how not optimistic others are. Silva needs to sort it out with his attitude. It could start with smiling more, even though there's nothing much to smile about. Does he smile at all? Could bring some postive vibes around, can only go right with that. Anyways. COYB.
Jamie Crowley
5 Posted 08/10/2019 at 02:48:51
The Holy Spirit descended, and I penned a piece for TW under the name Lyndon Lloyd, inspired Divinely.

I swear to God, I agree with every single word. Reading that was surreal.

The Board's patience must be wearing thin, and frankly not thin enough for my liking. If they give him another game or two, that's their decision, quite obviously.

But I'd have pulled the trigger the second the final whistle blew in the New Castle - Manchester United game. Bottom three is just not acceptable 8 games in, with the opposition we've faced.

Denny Kerr
6 Posted 08/10/2019 at 03:02:23
Excellent article Lyndon, it really says it all.

I've watched the Blues since 1954, and I really believe that this is the most depressing period in my lifetime.

I'm just beaten down as an Everton fan. So many false dawns, so many disappointments. If the team would just show some fight, some desire to win, I could almost accept our current predicament, knowing with the talent we have, we'd claw our way up the table.

However, week after week, we witness insepid, heartless performances, that leave us fans disappointed at the least, and more often than not, left with an empty, sinking feeling inside.

Marco says he's not worried, well I don't believe him, and if I'm wrong, and he really thinks that, then we really are in big, big trouble.

Jamie Crowley
7 Posted 08/10/2019 at 03:03:28
While I feel like venting my spleen. . .

I remember an FA Cup game under Roberto against West Ham. I think (my memory is absolute shite) we lost on PKs? Either way, we lost a really close game and were knocked out.

Afterwards, I sprinted to TW to find understandable anger and frustration at getting knocked out of the tournament. But the thing was, I remember not being overly upset. I thought we played very well, created a ton of chances, and it was just one of those nights. I was disappointed, but not disappointed with my team in the least. In fact, I felt we played like gladiators in a losing cause, but was really proud of the effort and determination we showed.

I thought, "Man, these folks on TW are being ridiculous. That wasn't even close to a bad display."

Here's the thing...

I haven't had that feeling since "that" game against the neighbors in last year's derby. And I think I won't again under Marco. There's just not the fight. It's either win, or more likely lose, and in loss there's no tempered feeling of, "we played well." It's just abject, hopeless, "that wasn't good enough" type of reaction to every loss.

That's not Everton. Not the Everton I've come to know, at any rate.

And I think maybe, maybe, that's why I believe Marco's time is truly up.

Justin Doone
8 Posted 08/10/2019 at 03:13:07
From memory the majority didn't want Silva but we were split and there was no particular standout candidate. But Mo got his man.

Many popular manager names went to other clubs playing European football or my own preference Mancini taking up an international position.

Silva offered a chance to reverse Sam's terrible direct style and the club continued to bring in players more suitable to deliver that. Improved football was achieved but with similar inconsistent results.

Fans expecting top 4 or 6 challenges were probably more hopefull than being realistic given the sustained quality of other clubs in those positions.

I honestly think with Silva or someone else we will not be relegated so I'm not panicking but I'm disappointed that we haven't been able to sustain or improve from last seasons form.

As last season it seems a top 10 finish is now the aim. So Silva has in many aspects failed already. But a better replacement may be hard to bring in until season end so Silva may be given more time.

I'd personally get rid, he was never good enough. I'd be happy with Unsworth or Moyes as a short term replacement to prove what they can do.

Either way another disappointing season but I'm still hoping for a quick change in fortunes and the FA Cup a major target.

John Pierce
9 Posted 08/10/2019 at 04:12:37
Lyndon, you’ve cogently pieced together much of the mitigation offered to date and proffered the reasons for Silva’s perilous position. The scales for me tip quite damningly in favor of his sacking.

What’s surprising to me is the board with a DoF model were the manager is easily the most dispensable commodity haven’t acted. Moreover Brands hasn’t chosen to push this cuckoo out of the nest.

Silva was chosen ahead of Brands appointment, he may have been consulted but really the deal was done for Silva, Brands just rubbed stamped it. So in the harshest terms Silva is not Marcel’s man.

The fact the club have been utterly silent suggests he will be allowed more time. Maybe one more game against a team we nearly always beat, West ham, who come rain or shine we have the wood over. It might prolong the agony.

But to what end? Fair to middling won’t cut it, Silva would need the biggest turn around ever to secure any credit with the majority of the fan base. One or two defeats would have him on the brink again in no time. My addled thought is that Everton will wait until they have a guaranteed replacement before booting the guy out. The club will be conscious of the shit-show following Koeman’s dismissal. Five weeks of turmoil, a rudderless & leaderless club.

Unsworth was ill prepared for the interim role and is no further on in his tutelage having chosen to stay safe rather than manage in the real world.

I do believe a swift sacking followed by landing a proven name is in order no matter the cost if we are to get the train back on the tracks.

Alexander Murphy
10 Posted 08/10/2019 at 04:21:40
Well thought through and assembled piece Lyndon.

Similarly Jamie's post @7.

Following our encouraging late run last season, I'd decided that Marco was indeed making progress. The summer ins & outs definitely gave Me more reasons to be warmly hopeful this season. Well that has now evaporated.

I can understand that sticking to a plan long enough for the players to get their (air) heads around the system makes sense. And that continual changes, tinkering and arseing about just confuses things repeatedly. What does not make sense is having a system which does not work for the players that we actually have. Making the same costly errors frequently and still persisting.

Our performances against Wolves and City were pretty good and if that was what we dished out every week then I'm certain that, despite out paltry points haul thus far, My enthusiasm would be accompanied by teeth gritted frustration at the injustice of our situation. Not so.

The late bloom last season has gone again. Tepid, insipid, frankly just half arsed performances that utterly justify our points total.

No glimmer of hope, infact, I even think "Oh shit no ! We're going to fuck up Moise Kean now and ruin the lad".

(Remember Andre Gomes reflection on his time at Barca ? How his early experiences buggered it all up ?).

I've tried to seek out the positives for Marco, unfortunately, just like his demeanour I'm left feeling glum.

Being cheerful Charlie chuckles when times are hard might have worked in the trenches of WWI but it's worth the square root of minus fuckall in present circumstances.

So, sadly, Marco I'm now with Benjamin Wilde Esq and have no more fucks to give !

(NSFW, it's a bit sweary, but here's where I am at)

Jay Harris
11 Posted 08/10/2019 at 04:30:40
Excellent piece as always Lyndon.

My personal view is that there is far more wrong at the club than the manager.

Losing Sousa and gaining Boa Morte (dead snake as someone named him) obviously hasnt helped nor has the loss of Gbamin, Gomes and Delph at various points but the team selection and tactics are bewildering. We also have the problem of FFP restricting our ability to go out and spend our way out of it which may be a factor in not sacking Silva already.

In the boardroom I see two different camps Mosh's men Ryaz, Marcel and then Bill's camp with DBB, the man himself and until recently Keith Harris.

Throughout the backroom staff we have some people of Silva's choosing and some of Bill's insistence.

In other words we appear to not have a united front.

If we are to move forward some very brave and thorough decisions need to be made and followed through.

Cristobal Aguirre
12 Posted 08/10/2019 at 06:21:29
We have a lot of problems, but definitely the first to do is getting rid of the stupid one.
Lyndon Lloyd
13 Posted 08/10/2019 at 06:39:19
Jay (11): "My personal view is that there is far more wrong at the club than the manager."

I'm reading that a lot here and on social media but I don't really draw that straight a line between our current mess on the field and what's going on off it. At the root of it, Moshiri has provided money and much of it has been wasted and he's thrown a lot of it down drain on failed managerial hires but we've still invested heavily in some decent players.

We're by no means the finished article and we knew that when the transfer window closed but based on what's gone on elsewhere in the first 8 games of the season, this incomplete team should be in the top 4. That we're not could be attributable to a couple of key shortcomings or absences if we were 7th or 8th but we've taken 1 point from games against Palace, Bournemouth, Sheffield United and Bournemouth and sit in the bottom 3. That's on the manager.

Mick Quirke
14 Posted 08/10/2019 at 06:49:52
Spot on, Lyndon. I don’t wanna be trigger-happy, but his record is appalling. I’d go all out for Mourinho, there’d be no hiding then.
Jim Harrison
15 Posted 08/10/2019 at 06:56:06
Of course it’s the managers issue, and the set piece stats are damming. The pundits called the Burnley goal and where it would come from well before it happened during the game. But I think dismissing so lightly the impact of the injury issues is a bit wrong. As o yet he has not been able to field his strongest side once.

That’s the only defence of Silva I will bother with though. I have always tried to see positives and not be reactionary to short term results. But this is painful. Every coach out there knows how to beat us and how to nullify our attack.

The quality in the squad is undoubted. It’s use is questionable on too many occasions.

Big question though, who comes in? With Utd and spurs both looking shaky there are two plum jobs to attract the best candidates.
The position should be quite desirable. A good basis of squad to work with (realistically a CB and quality striker away from being a really good team) strong support, a fairly patient chairman/owner. Problem seems to be with the availability of a quality manager to fill the gap

Tony Everan
16 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:01:23
Thanks Lyndon for summing up what nearly all are thinking so well.

I hope the board don't sit on their hands and are active in sorting this out. It is totally unacceptable what is happening. The manager has been backed and supported by Moshiri more than we could have hoped for. After 50 games in charge , Marco Silva's chance has been and gone.

The Burnley match was the straw that broke the camels back. 4-2-3-1 again, Sigurdsson again, ineffective again. Disjointed with no goal threat we are always a set piece away from defeat.

It is just not good enough for the club. The club needs a to change the manager, not in 4 weeks time, but now.

Changing the manager now is no gamble, it's a necessity.

Brian Porter
17 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:18:21
Great piece Lyndon, which encapsulates everything that is wrong with our club at this 'moment' to use a Silvaism.
Jaimie #5, you've just made exactly the point I made on one of the other threads currently running on this subject, (have you ever seen so many, all covering the same thing)?.

The minute the final whistle blew in the Newcastle - Man Utd game should have been the moment to announce Silva's dismissal.

Instead it looks like the board, in typically cowardly Everton fashion, are dragging things out, until we probably hit 20th position.

It's not long till Christmas and don't they know that the clubs in the bottom three at Christmas very rarely escape the relegation trapdoor? One, perhaps, but not all three.

It's as if they have a death wish. Will nothing shake them from their collective apathy? How many more defeats is it going to take before they realise the only direction we're going under Silva is DOWN!

If they want to demonstrate that they are putting Everton first, they should ACT NOW. Get rid of the most awful manager I can remember in 60 years of supporting this once great club. Yes, he's even worse than Walter Smith and his results prove it.

David Foster
18 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:28:00
The fact is we failed to bring in adequate replacements for Zouma and Gueye but not only that we also didn’t sign a centre-forward of proven Premier League quality. If we had rectified these issues then maybe we wouldn’t be in the disastrous position of 18th in the league.
Alan J Thompson
19 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:28:28
Does anyone know if the lessons and costs of Martinez, Koeman and Allardyce were learnt and the necessary KPI's were put into Silva's contract. I doubt that one week in the relegation positions would be enough but 3 or 4 weeks or after so many games?

Undoubtedly the blame has to be laid at the Manager's door but to blame new players not yet bedded in or not signing a third centre half of some pace or an experienced striker is to give the Manager a free pass. Also, I don't think we should believe that all will be corrected come the January transfer window or do we resign ourselves to relegation if we don't sign these players or others won't part for just that reason or for less than an arm and a leg which would mean the reduction of the wage bill has to take at least second place?

I don't envy the Board possibly having to find an immediate replacement and that may be Silva's saviour, the possibility that no reputable manager would fancy what may look a short term appointment, more because of League position than previous managers tenure.

David Thomas
20 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:35:08
100% agree. Excellent article. Both Brands and Silva were left in no doubt about the fans feelings when they walked past the away end at the end of Saturdays match.
Neil Lawson
21 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:44:44
There has been little prolonged excitement at Goodison since 1995. We should be grateful to Marco for the real prospect of a near season long relegation battle and the tension and apprehension and nervous excitement that it will bring. Every match a potential cup final.
(and before you all slaughter me with your prose. no, I am not serious)
Paul Tran
22 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:50:43
You've hit the nail on the head, Lyndon.

If we were sitting 7th/8th, I might be inclined to bemoan the loss of Gomes and Gbamin. If we had a squad full of callow youngsters, I could understand us getting out-noused every week.

Instead, we have an expensively-assembled squad that looks far, far less than the sum of its parts. If the current squad was managed well, we'd be in the top six now. I'm fed up of managers talking about confidence & mentality as if they're something abstract that they can't affect. It's a fundamental part of the job!

The board are either showing faith or carefully looking at replacements. Whatever they're doing, Silva has a last opportunity to send out a confident, attacking team that takes the game to the opposition.

The talent's there, it needs releasing.

Ken Kneale
23 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:51:29
Great article Lyndon and Jamie @7 comments. This is a management issue. we all accept the shortcomings of the situation but the turgid uninspiring football, complete lack of passion in either management or players and total void of leadership on field and in the dugout is Silva's load to bear and he is clearly not up to the task. He must go and bring with him the freeloaders such as Ferguson - a clear example of the muddled thinking at all levels of the club.

If Silva does not go now we are simply mortgaging out the problem

John Keating
24 Posted 08/10/2019 at 07:51:52
Can't argue with any of that
When I started reading it and the mention of not getting a striker in, losing Gana, not getting CH cover I thought here we go again, the usual excuses.

However the article continued and, in my opinion, summed up what is really wrong. Silvas intransigence and some of the players lack of fight and motivation

Michael Ball has more or less been writing this article in the Echo for weeks now. Silvas demeanour, players lack of fight, team spirit, or lack of etc etc etc

Silva was put to us as a coach who goes in to details on the training pitch, covering his own team and the opposition. I would suggest that what we see week in week out is the complete opposite. Added to that too many players are not doing the jobs they shouldn't need coaching on!

In the short term we need to stop pissing around mollycoddling these wasters. We need to halt this disastrous slide, which if not arrested, will only accelerate and become unstoppable.
We need to ditch Silva.
We need someone who has Everton more at heart than either his ego or failed tactics
Forget all these foreign mercenaries
Right now get Unsworth in with a remit to bin anyone who is out of form or not prepared to give everything.

Trevor Peers
25 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:10:13
Keeping faith with Silva represents our worst chance of climbing out of the present crisis.

Amazingly people are suggesting with a change or tweet in tactics and a few new faces we will finish 9th or so. The fact that we have had such a dreadful start this time against the poorest of opposition means this is much much worse than that.

Silva looks like he has survived and that's bad news it means nobody else out there is remotely interested in walking into such a toxic situation or the owner just hasn't bothered looking. How bad will it get ? I think there's a lot worse to come under Silva, the longer it goes on the more likely the dreaded Moyes option will be the only way out of this situation it's a certainty.

Daniel A Johnson
26 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:10:33
Silva bangs on about philosophy, style and their way of playing etc.

Our next manager (whoever that is) must instil pride, heart, fight and determination into the team. Because without that style and philosophy is meaningless.

If I was in the trenches I would want none of the bottlers stood next to me.

Kevin Murray
27 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:12:07
A great piece, sums up the situation at present perfectly.

I personally kept faith in the current set up during the dreadful months in the middle of last season as I believed they deserved to show they could turn it around. With some decent performances they did eventually improve. It did take an alarmingly long time though. Even with a better balanced defence and a stronger midfield with Zouma and Gueye in the side.

Unfortunately I now can not see any defence for the coaching staff. Ask yourself would any other half decent coach get more from the current squad we have? I think it would be a resounding yes.

We are all seeing the same faults repeated over and over. Same formation, predominantly the same players, poor in game management, poor substitutions, poor communication, sulking on the sideline. These are all problems which have nothing to do with the transfer window.

I believe (and have done since the slump last season) that Glyfi Sigurdsson is the embodiment of the problem. For some reason, whether it's his price tag or the coaches belief that he has the ability at set pieces to pull a goal out of nowhere, he is continually picked. His style of play is not suited to the top level of the premier league. He Is too slow, he isn't box to box, he rarely gets beyond the striker and in my opinion when Silva talks about 'hiding' Sigurdsson is the biggest culprit.

There has been no acknowledgment or addressing of these obvious problems. Therefore I can only see one solution, replace the entire coaching staff including Silva. The problem with this is that so far under our current owner the decisions on this appointment have been terrible.

Our only hope is that Brands was not in before Silva was decided upon and he can offer a better solution to take the position. If not we're in for much of the same for the foreseeable. And to top it off we have to put up with the other lot being world beaters.

Only Everton eh. Up the blues!

Joe McMahon
28 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:20:35
I look at Wolves, with their squad, which has pace, their manager and I think they have spent nothing compared to us. Boy have they raised. Why does it always go so horribly wrong at Everton. There seems to be an obsession with "getting it" we have to have the old boys club, Kenwright and his Everton memories of yesterday, Z Cars, Tommy Steele and Dickson of Dock Green.

Someone stated yesterday that only ex players have won trophies for Everton. Well in the real world it makes no difference. That lot have won countless trophies with managers with no connection to the club. SAF had no connection to Man Utd.

I left Saturdays game nearly in shock at how bad we were. I don't know the solution but I feel we would benefit from an entire clean up and being Everton into the 21st Century. If Moyes comes back, I will after choosing to support Everton (coming from a City family) finally throw in the towel.

Kevin Molloy
29 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:27:22
the bottom line is Silva is a coach, not a manager. He is incapable of getting in the players heads and inspiring them.
Shaun Lyon
30 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:34:46
A comprehensive summation Lyndon. A whole series of incremental mishaps (and some bad luck) have conspired to bring us to this point - never replacing Lukaku (a 19 year old wonder kid was never going to bang in a shedload in his first season as everyone surely knew), losing Gueye and Zouma (and not replacing the latter), losing Gbamin to injury, Gomes out, no-one ever knowing where to play Sigurdsson...the whole mess presided over by an intransigent and tactically unbending coach (which wouldn't be so bad if his tactics worked). What a depressing scenario. I think Silva will be gone after the West Ham game but surely to God he has to try somethingsomethingsomething different!
Eddie Dunn
31 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:42:03
Lyndon, I agree completely with your article and if the board take a long look at the easy fixtures that we have performed for poorly in, then what do they think we will get from the next eight?
I thought that we needed to do much better with this first set of games in order to be able to absorb a few losses and draws as the tough fixtures came along.
Our position is going to be very difficult to improve on with harder games coming up.
We need to improve and quickly and I really have no faith in Silva to manage it.
I also worry at the choice of the next incumbent.
Eddie Dunn
32 Posted 08/10/2019 at 08:51:32
Nobody has yet mentioned Phil Neville.
Under a bit of pressure in his role with the female England team he said
"I'm not the kind of manager that hangs around waiting for a pay out - I want this team to do well," Neville added.

"I still believe in what we are doing and so do the players. We are in an era now - we saw it in the Premier League this week - you lose two or three games and all of a sudden it's 'out'. People are calling for your head.
Now I think we could do a lot worse than Phil, who could step in and knows much of the set-up and was held in high regard by most Everton fans.

Filipe Torres
33 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:11:27
I wouldn't mind sending marco a report to save his bacon. Does anyone have his email?? Just kidding here, ain't I?

I'll start by saying it would help to drop Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin to the stands. It has to be 5-3-2 with Iwobi or Bernard behind the 2 strikers.

To make it simple: it's Sibidé on the right and Digne on the left, Gbamin (when fit) should put Keane on the bench, or stand, and play alongside Mina with Holgate in the sweeper position. It wouldn't need that much work really, mainly because our full-backs are used to going forward.

Delph and Gomes in the middle and Bernard or Iwobi behind the strikers. Now, if you, Marco, think you can play Keane or Sigurdsson in this formation… in theory you can… but you will ruin it, because the magic trio of Keane, Schneiderlin and Sigurdsson are the most numb, slow, anonymous, and it seems to me, mentally weak bunch I have ever seen, never mind their playing qualities (if they have any).

The system is flexible; in thougher games, you can play a midfield of three: Gomes, Delph and Iwobi or Davies, and bench the playmaker, you can also add a third forward playing like a 5-2-3, a false one though, with Gbamin filling in in midfield, and dropping back when needed, playing as the up-and-coming libero that German teams had in the '90s, like Matthaus, Sammer or even Ballack (more recently).

The midfield of three can form an inverted triangle with two of them, or even the three, like Conte is doing at Inter, free to go up and make the playmaker role. It is a question of awareness, and more details that I can't possibly write it all in here, but with the three forwards alternative; two of them would have to drop back to pressure their defenders and full-backs.

Just think about it: the system is almost perfect and would protect us from our main weaknesses, lack of pace and cover in defence, and add presence in the opposition's box.

It's a no-brainer to me this one.

Michael Lynch
34 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:16:43
I clicked on the link back to Lyndon's piece from February, 99 Problems, and it's quite depressing how similar the situation was. We were in despair. Much of what Lyndon said then, for example: "the team still lacks leadership, a general in midfield, a reliable striker and genuine creativity", are just as appropriate today. He talked about our bodged zonal marking, how Sigurdsson didn't fit Silva's preferred system, and about the need for a set of good results to lift some of the pressure on our manager and get the fans behind him. Familiar? If so, it's because nothing has changed.

Of course, after the February article, we went on to beat a few of the top six, and wreck the RS's title plans, which bought Silva time. But my gut feeling is that he's run out of road with the fans, not helped by his poor communication skills and slightly lukewarm and detached demeanour. Even if he does now get us to mid-table or top-half, I think the search is on for a replacement at the end of the season. Sooner, if we don't take at least four points from West Ham and Brighton.

Iain Latchford
35 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:18:40
Eddie, I was also mulling this one over on the train this morning.

I think we could do a lot worse with the options we have available to us. He knows the league, knows club, and won everything as a player. He must have gained a significant amount of knowledge during his playing days (certainly more than Silva). I think he'd get us organised and moving in the right direction. Possibly with the someone like Tim Cahill alongside him. Similar situation to Lampard, who I think will do well at Chelsea.

My concern would be that it could be seen as "jobs for the boys", and he'd be too close to BK and the associated issues with that. However, we've tried with "outsiders" (Koeman, Silva), and that's not worked either. I think there are more pros than cons with this one.

Laurie Hartley
36 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:18:50
Lyndon - that is an article that needed posting.

If Moshiri is to have any hope of getting a return on his investment he has to build the stadium. To do that he needs stability for the next three years.

Marco Silva is not going to provide that - my view is if he isn’t gone by the end of this month we will definitely be looking down the barrel.

The new manager will have be capable of commanding the immediate respect and confidence of the playing squad.

He will have to know the premier league and have a proven track record.

He will also have to be available.

I hope Moshiri has the nous to be on the blower to Arsene Wenger.

Before “anyone” starts banging on about his age (70), the manager of the team currently lying sixth is 72.

Strike while the iron is hot.

Mike Doyle
37 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:27:58
Joe #23] In contrast to us, since 'Stevie G laa' left for Rangers I don't think LFC have any ex-players on their coaching staff - and seem to be struggling by OK.

They do, however, have a coach that clearly does "get them" - and a superb player recruitment dept.

Nicholas Ryan
38 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:36:59
In life, you surely model yourself on the person/team, that is clearly 'getting it right'. Unfortunately for us, that is LFC everyone else City included, is treading water. So, what are Liverpool 'doing right'?

My son's rugby coach [an ex-All Black] said that NZ do not do anything flash; they simply do the basics, to perfection, at great speed. Each player knows what he is going to do with the ball, before he receives it. I watched LFC on the telly, and it struck me, that is PRECISELY what they do. Every pass goes where is it supposed to, at breakneck speed. So, Everton, forget trying to show off; just get it to a blue shirt, further up the field than yourself …. and get it there, bloody Quick!!

Strip it down to the basics, and get them right. I can't help [again] quoting Aussie bowler Glenn McGrath, when asked about the shots that Sachin Tendulkar played. His reply: 'Tendulkar doesn't bother with shots he just shows you the [bat] maker's name.' Simples!!

Bill Watson
39 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:45:43
So, another morning and a quick scan at the Everton website only to discover he's still there.

It looks like the board are sitting on their hands and Silva has survived for the time being. But it is only for the time being because his record demonstrates he'll be unable to get a tune out of this expensively assembled squad.

I've supported this club since 1958 and, given the players he has at his disposal, Silva must be the worst manager in that time.

I'm now at the stage that if he's still in charge for the West Ham game I'll be hoping we're turned over and the board is, finally, forced to act.

Michael Lynch
40 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:46:11
Eddie @32 and Iain @35 - I like Phil Neville's attitude to management, he seems honest and clear-headed in his approach, but he is on the verge of getting the boot himself after 5 games without a win, and questions about his team's defence. Now of course that means he could be available pretty soon, but I'm not sure his is the best CV for the job at the moment!
Dan Nulty
41 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:51:18
I don't even bother with match of the day anymore. Perhaps it is a combination of factors, the lack of fight, the lack of quality, the fact that Liverpool have such a good team. The standard in the Premier league overall has been dwindling for years. I think it is at an all time low now.

I genuinely think football is dying a slow death, the money has ruined it and so much of that money is being lost to the game via players and agents in particular. An unhealthy relationship with gambling is also a contributing factor. Gambling, whilst providing 5 mins of adrenaline can lead to misery, not just for those gambling but their loved ones too.

I think it is a shame how tribal and aggressive fans have become towards one another as well, whether that be Liverpool Everton or Liverpool United.

Not the same sport it once was. Think I will stick to watching my son's under 9s play!

Joe McMahon
42 Posted 08/10/2019 at 09:57:36
Dan@41 I know exactly what you mean. These last few years I've taken more of an interest in rugby (league and union) and cricket. The cricket this summer was far more entertaining than Everton have been in years.
Amit Vithlani
43 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:26:35
Lyndon, part of your article echoes the piece in the Athletic this week regarding Silva. It seems JPS, according to their sources, had a big role in the tightening up of our set piece issues with "work in the manager's office and training ground".
Dale Rose
44 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:29:14
Nick Ryan #28. Good post. Back to basics. The passing is awful far to many stray passes as a result, we are hit on the break too much. There is also a lack of ball control which at this level is alarming. If they got the basics right, things would start to improve.

Excellent article Lyndon.

Dave Williams
45 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:29:30
Excellent piece Lyndon. I wonder whether the critics of Ferguson and Boa Morte have any actual knowledge of what they do? As for the claims that the reason for our defensive woes is because Sousa left, wasn’t he around last season when we had exactly the same problem?
Fans complain that Ferguson doesn’t shout at the players from the bench but he can’t take that responsibility from the manager unless he is told to do so. The problems are not down to the board- whatever people think of the incumbents the manager has had a fortune placed at his disposal. Good players have been bought but there is no fighting spirit,no blood and guts attitude and no great pride in the players and the performances they are serving up.
The problem is down to Silva. He trains and coaches the squad, he is supposed to motivate them, he picks the team and decides on the substitutes. It is nothing to do with Boa Morte, Sousa,Ferguson, Ebbrell,Jeffers,Unsworth,Sharp,Stuart,Snodin,Kenwright,Baxendale or any of the accused I may have missed. This is down to the manager alone. He has had a decent squad( not the finished article but decent) and he has us in the bottom three, playing dreadfully boring football and not putting any fight into our performances. He is being paid a few million £ per annum because he is supposed to have great ability to train,coach and motivate and he has fallen short for the vast majority of his time here.
There is only one person to blame and only that one person who can put it right whilst he remains in charge.
Charles Barrow
46 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:30:05
This must be one of the most depressing times for us supporters in the last 50 years. I started going to Goodison with my Dad and then my mates from the early 70's. That was bad enough with Liverpool starting their 70's domination, then the short wonderful mid/late 80's and then the long slow decline from the 90's.

This is worse than any time I can remember because we have spent a fortune, have changed managers like underpants, play terrible football, hardly score goals, are justifiably on last on MOTD and have become a laughing stock.

Silva seems blind to the problems we have all pointed out, of his unchanging dismal tactics and his clear use of 'favourites' who are simply not performing. I can only assume Moshiri will use the international break to quietly canvass other candidates for the job. If he doesn't, he's as much the problem as Silva.

Iain Latchford
47 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:39:27
Michael (40), I agree the Neville does not currently have the CV to warrant a job like Everton. Silva (for example) has more experience, but look how that's going. However I do think PN has the potential, and would at least bring some pride and motivation back into the squad. Something Silva seems less and less able to do. Lampard has very little experience as manager but bucket loads as a player and seems a switched on bloke. similar to PN.

It's hard to compare the women's game to the Premier League. It would be a gamble, but almost every managerial appointment is these days. We could give PN a two year contact on say £3m a season (God help him). That way the financial risk at least is fairly minimal.

Rich Evans
48 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:46:34
When I woke up this morning the first thing I did was check my phone to see if Silva had departed yet. I think that pretty much sums up where I'm at. The guy inspires no confidence, he skulks around the touchline looking lost and out of his depth, his grasp of the English language mysteriously deteriorates when interviewed after each poor performance to the point of being unintelligible, his persistence in continually selecting out-of-form players to play in the same old formation is alarming and his all round total apparent lack of enthusiasm is unforgivable. He is not a leader. He is out of his depth. He is lost. It is so obvious that a change is needed. He will be forgotten quickly.
Rick Tarleton
49 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:48:48
A cogent and well-written article yet again, Lyndon. Can I add that one of the problems Silva faces is his total intransigence regarding team formation. Basically we are set up to cede the midfield to the opposition: two defensive midfielders, who play too deep to affect the game positively and then Sigurdsson as the third midfielder, miles ahead of the other two and without the engine to run as he would need to do in that role. In that gap the other teams are controlling the game, because our possession is all in non-vital areas of the pitch.
To add to this unbalance, both our full backs are really wing backs, they attack better than they defend and so teams can counter-attack down the flanks, thus exposing the lack of pace of Mina and Keane. In fact, lack of pace is a problem throughout the team, except for the numerous wingers, whose speed is excellent,but not allied to a footballing brain, often a genetic disease of this breed of player.
Silva has a shape he likes, basically 4-3-3, though with tweaks, but he has not the players to play this system. Yet he persists, in the face of overwhelming evidence, Without the players to provide energy and control to midfield, he has to change to 4-4-2. Perhaps find a role for Tom Davies at Sigurdsson's expense. Tosun is not ideal, but he can play with his back to the goal and Richarlison should be playing off him. The backs must be reminded that their primary role is defensive.
However, I cannot see Silva moving to this pragmatic formation. The players he has signed seem to be mainly wingers or defensive midfielders and it these players to whom he looks for salvation, when it is the system that is wrong, and changing the components in the system will not correct the fundamental problem.

To play 4-3-3 successfully you need players like Ball, Kendall and Harvey, players who were non-stop dynamos and they were supported by Morrissey dropping back to help when they were under pressure. Our current crop could never be described as dynamos.

Eddie Dunn
50 Posted 08/10/2019 at 10:50:57
Iain and Michael, the thing is Phil served the club well and would slip into the job quickly He already knows many people there and he seems honest and hard working as well as very competitive. he has also won things and played international football.
His ladies team almost won the world cup.
We are unlikely to temp Mourinho, the fanbase would be divided on Benitez and many of us are sick and tired of taking a gamble on potentially good foreign managers.
Why not have Neville?
My other option would be Eddie Howe (who I wanted last time).
Phil Greenough
51 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:04:05
Like every one else, I'm at a loss, trying to rationalise Silva's intransigence and the Board's hesitance to replace him. Then I had a really bad thought, what if the Board want Everton to be relegated?

Now I know how bad that sounds, but If there were issues about BMD, that made it financially unviable or Moshiri didn't want to be part of building it anymore, it would give them a reason to cancel the project.

It's a tad extreme, I know. But it might prevent some of the guaranteed embarrassment, especially after the Kings Dock and Croxteth debacle.

Also, because of the indifference to the history and lackof love for our club. They wouldn't be worried about our top flight status. Even if they were, the parachute payments would soften the blow.

This is what it's come to though, crazy thoughts, because of the totally irrational actions of our manager and board.

PS. No one has landed on the moon either.

Tony Everan
52 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:16:45
Rumours are starting, Brands wants Erik Ten Hag of Ajax.

Anyone followed the progress , methods of this manager , know his strengths ?

Would he be a good fit for us?

Iain Latchford
53 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:19:11
Who would you rather have in the dressing room currently, Neville and Cahill or Silva and Boa Morte?

There would be no "what have you ever done" either. It would be "6 Premier Leagues, 3 FA Cups and the Champions League, how about you?".

Neville would be all over it. He's a motivator and highly driven. We could do a lot worse, as we're proving.

Iain Latchford
54 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:26:56
Ten Hag (if he wants to leave) could end up with a choice of Everton, Spurs, Utd, or possibly even Barca. I doubt he'd come to us with those options.
Joe McMahon
55 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:28:26
Tony, the other rumour (it's all rumours of course) Laurent Blanc.
Tony Abrahams
56 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:32:53
I remember reading a Roy Keane book, and he was commenting how before one champions lge semi-final, how he looked along the line and one of his team-mates was visibly shaking, and although he wouldn’t say who it was I remember thinking after seeing a picture of the line-up that it was probably Phil Neville.

John Hammond
57 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:34:41
Great article Lyndon.

You have to think that dropping into the relegation zone is a trigger for Brands to act however the international break may have saved Silva's bacon for the time being. They'll take into consideration how he turned it around last season. I imagine nothing less than 4 points against West Ham and Brighton and beating Watford in the cup and that's curtains.

It truly is maddening how he refuses to do anything at all to try and improve the results on the pitch until he's on the verge of being sacked. His favoured formation is 433, we have the personel to play that formation, we have players that can come in for those out of form and yet it's the same thing week after week. The Sigurdsson situation reminds me of when we signed Rooney - picked game after game no matter his form or detriment to the team.

Something interesting I read is that Silva had planned to go with Walcott up front against City but Bernard's sudden illness put paid to that plan.

Martin Mason
58 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:38:47
As with United it's a rot within the club that can't be solved by just changing managers and buying players. Buying players is a pinning the tail to the donkey exercise at best and doesn't work when the rot sets in because no matter who we buy it has little effect in stopping the rot just strings of poor buys with the odd amazing exceptions like Gana Gueye. I don't believe that changing managers and buying players will stop the rot at Everton, the club is slowly dying and I believe that rebirth by relegation is the only way that the club will improve eventually. This would allow the club to hack off and discard its masses of putrid growth that underperforms and yet is overpaid, to become lean and mean and to promote its players from the academy. That would mean a young British Manager and young, mainly British players, BK and his sycophants put out to pasture and fans who understand, buy in and are prepared to see a grass root development. What is the point of being a club whose only aim is to stay in the EPL, what is the point of having an academy when we don't develop any first team players or if we do we sell them?

We are going nowhere as a club only trying to stay in the EPL and humiliating ourselves in the process. I believe that the major problem with Everton is that we have never been relegated and regenerated. The new ground may be a catalyst for renewal and possibly far more important than we realise but we must have a new start with all of the deadwood associated with failure cleared out.

David Pearl
59 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:44:57
Funny thing is... there had been silence from above. No vote of confidence, nothing.

To my mind Moshiri is either dumbfounded or currently searching for an alternative so we are not in limbo. We gambled on youth and improving talent, and it’s yet to pay off. Two years down the road and DCL and Kean might be banging them in.

We all know the shape is wrong, the mentality is wrong... and playing Richarlison out wide right is also wrong. Fingers are pointed at the players but Schneiderlin for instance doesn’t have a lot of choice when he looks up and the last resort is a simple sideways pass. It seems so simple to bring in another midfielder into the gaping hole between Siggy and Delph. And shove our wide players closer to our striker.
I don’t get it. Pickford has been poor also, when we need a rock back there. Surely there must be a leader on the pitch to organise the defensive set up. But there isn’t.

On another thread l suggested we promote Unsworth to a first team coach position. No denying how well he continues to do every single season after losing so many players. If we don’t change the manager then this is the first thing l do would do. Silva doesn’t seem to grasp the fundamentals, never has. When anything goes wrong he folds his arms and looks lost.

That’s all from me folks. Enough has been said, enough has been written. Over to the board now.

Ciaran O'Brien
61 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:47:00
I usually hate it when clubs constantly sack managers and was all supportive of Silva going into the season. Now, however I don’t think he’s the right fit.
He shows no passion on the sidelines and barely cracks a smile. The players are a reflection of the manager and that is what we are seeing, no heart, boring and slow.

He persists with the horrible and negative 4-2-3-1 set up which I’ve always despised with the same tactics of using our full backs as the main playmakers ffs.

If Silva wants to keep his job he needs to ditch zonal marking because it has never worked in the Premier League, I remember Rafa using it at the Shite in his first couple of seasons and they too were utter muck at defending set pieces.

He needs to switch to a 4-3-3 or a 4-4-2 and to mix it up by playing through the middle and some direct balls.
Sigurdsson, Ricky and Schneiderlin are stinking the place out at the moment and need to be dropped. Sidibe needs a run in the side too.

Unfortunately I don’t think he will turn it around. If so, we need to go for a top manager like Allegri who’s available and wants to manage in England.
No more “no marks” and managers with “potential”, look at the Shite they sacked Rodgers and hired proven talent in Klippity. Look at them now ffs.
Don’t want Rafa, Dyche, Moyes or past it managers like Wenger etc.
Howe is an interesting option but his sides are dodgy in defense and he doesn’t have a great record in the transfer market but maybe that’s alright with Brands in charge of recruitment.
Mourinho will never come here and if he did, he will fall out with everyone after a season or so like he always does.

My choices would be Simeone but he isn’t realistic now, Allegri, Marcelino, ten Haag, Gallardo, Simone Inzaghi, Blanc and maybe Nagelsman, Howe, Hughton and Arteta.

Brian Murray
62 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:52:45
Who cares if Mourinho ends up falling out with everyone? He will upset the cosy jobs for the boys and that's fine with me. Plus he will get us on the map and create a siege mentality, culminating in wins against the shite etc. If it does go Pete Tong in the end, we will be back as serious players. Even on the kopite Sky with Spit the Dog etc.
John Keating
63 Posted 08/10/2019 at 11:59:57
Martin 58
Martin you may have a point in "rebirth through relegation"

However, in my opinion, and shown by many other teams, Leeds, Sunderland etc rebirth may take years if ever.

I reckon if, God forbid, we did pay the ultimate price of continuing with Silva, we would be consigned to the doldrums for years.

Newcastle went down and up and it didn't really solve their problems.

I appreciate we need a wholesale clear out but going down would be disastrous. Best I think surviving this season and hope improvements come over the next few seasons. Seem to have heard that before!

Brian Harrison
64 Posted 08/10/2019 at 12:02:52

While I agree that the manager has to take the lions share of the blame, I cant agree with you on Brands not being culpable in this sorry tale.

Brands was responsible for allowing Gueye to leave, he most our most effective player and integral to how Silva wanted us to play. Just that business on its own should make you question Brands ability as a DOF.

Then lets look at the players he has brought to the club, Bernard a forward who scored 1 league goal all season. Mina although injured for a large part of the season even when fit Silva preferred Zouma. Digne had a great season last year. Gbamin hasnt played enough to pass judgement. Kean, this is a 19 year old just starting his professional career and he could turn out to be anything. But to ask one so young and so inexpeirienced to come to a new country and not speak the language, to the hardest league, and expect him to hit the ground running was bordering on madness. Particularly as the striker at present the preferred choice was another young striker learning the game. He brought in Delph and Iwobi, now there is no way that Delph can play in the Gueye role as he cant get round the pitch like Gueye did. Iwobi seems nobody is sure if he is a wide player or a possible number 10 although he never played in that role for Arsenal. H e has also brought Siddibie but again played too few games to make an assessment.

So while Silva carries most of the blame I don't believe brands is blameless.

Frank Crewe
65 Posted 08/10/2019 at 12:34:33
It's amazing how the club gets blamed for "letting" a player go. Gueye made it clear he wanted to leave. There is no point in keeping unhappy players. If a player wants to leave then let him go.
What this is really about is motivation. Is Silva motivating the players? Judging by our recent pathetic performances I would say a resounding NO! The fact is that generally speaking no manager gets every player they want so they have to get the best out of the players they have. Silva is not getting the best out of the players he has.
Silva has a squad that is at least good enough for mid-table yet they are in the bottom three. He insists on playing 4-2-3-1 with at least three/four players devoid of form. He insists on playing zonal defence so we keep conceding goals at set pieces. Consequently we keep losing. That is the real problem the manner of our defeats. We are not going down to defeat while fighting to win we lose without a whimper. The players have ceased to try and at the first set back they simply crumble to defeat.
Now I don't expect us to win every match. But I do expect us to try to win every match. If Silva cannot motivate the players to fight to at least try to win regardless of the opposition then he is not the manager Everton need.
Daniel A Johnson
66 Posted 08/10/2019 at 12:47:35
We are at a crossroads for the clubs future.

We have a new stadium in the works that very much depends on our premiership status. If we get relegated then suddenly no Stadium and a bleak future to speak of. The funding of our new stadium depends very much on us dining at the premiership table.

Yet we find ourselves in the bottom 3 with a coach that has serious question being asked him and rightly so. With the players at Marco Silva's disposal and the fixture list handed to us thus far, we should be in the top 10 minimum. But were not.

I'm rubbish at poker but with so much at stake I'd hate to Moshiri and Brands right now. Stick or twist?

Personally the future of EFC shouldn't be gambled on Marco Silva suddenly getting it right when he's had 50 games and 3 transfer windows to magically steer us into the bottom 3.

Get rid now and do it quick.

Denis Richardson
67 Posted 08/10/2019 at 12:54:03
I would be utterly amazed if the search for a replacement wasn’t already underway. But like mentioned above, I can see the club waiting until they’ve found a replacement rather than having a caretaker for a few weeks.

Hopefully it’ll be sooner than later as I can’t see the players suddenly turning things round. Once the rot starts it’s incredible hard to reverse.

Dave Williams
68 Posted 08/10/2019 at 12:56:03
Moyes got us a fourth place with a much weaker and smaller squad and a centre forward who was not a goal scorer but could hold the ball up and had a great work rate.
It can be done with an imperfect squad if the manager can motivate and inspire. If you looked at Moyes on the touch line his eyes were on fire. He’d argue with officials, scuffle with managers( he and Mancini didn’t seem to like each other) and players ran through brick walls for him.
Silva sits in his seat looking wretched and powerless.
Tom Bowers
69 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:01:10
Much like most of last season it always seemed that whomever the opposition they always had far too much room to attack Everton's back line and that was down to poor marking and tackling in the midfield area.
Siva has not corrected this or does he just have too many players lacking in that department.
In every game this season I have been amazed how easy teams have been able to put Everton under pressure even Lincoln and Wednesday in the Mickey Mouse cup.

Whatever the problem it needs to be corrected soon given the dire position they find themselves in and I sure hope that Moshiri has given Siva the ultimatum which may only be a couple more games.
I also think they need a strong captain as Seamus has been less than impressive since his bad injury and just doesn't seem to have the right personality for captaincy.
They need a Peter Reid type who can really get at them when they start slacking.

Sam Bull
70 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:02:38
i like others were at bit mystified we even for Silva in the first place, my position was similar when it comes to Pickford also, but thats another story...

TBF, he has had his best midfielder sold from under him, and his replacement midfielders have been injured, and also McCarthy who I rate was sold for a pittance, whether any of those were Silva's decisions or not I don't know. He also has striking options of Tosun, DCL, Kean and Niasse!

Tosun has no pace, can shoot well but is not a target man, Kean has pace, can shoot and run with ball,but also is not a target man (1st touch similar to Lukaku at present also), DCL has pace, can hold the ball up well sometimes, and is a target man.. he has everything needed to be a great striker, but lacks the killer instinct in front of goal.. and Niasse, does seems to score, but even he wonders how he did it

but we never play long quick balls from defence or midfield.. only maybe a kick by Pickford now and again, and although some are quality, its rare anything comes of it. so 9/10 its slow build up play, no through balls, no over the top, rarely into channels, so any pace the striker has isn't really being used. Back to goal, work it from side to side and hope one of the 30 crosses goes to exactly where the loan striker is after they have made 4 runs.

What system would work with the strikers we have?, well 2 up top has got to be a choice, but my preference.. 433, Kean, DCL, Richie. quick balls, over the top, into Channels, in behind! we need to be more direct, get the defence turned around and make it difficult for them.

This manager does not change anything, said he prefers 433, never done it? Siggy is more less bypassed nowadays (ball is always out wide) so why not fook him off altogether, gomes, delph, snied at present, gomes, delph, gbamin, when fit, iwobi could do a job in there, davies, 1 cdm, 2 cm's.

ill be as surprised as most if that happens with this man.

Tom Dodds
71 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:04:04
Probably the best overview of all.

Maybe we are sticking with the Phsyche of it all because we have little else culturally to compare with football,i just don't know anymore,but I do think espescially at this point in time that the appointment of a really good manager seems to be tipping the balance against the 'mega players' make the better teams to a good extent.
And as we are finding out the best team DO have the best managers.

Everton truly do now need a really Top manager,and back to money/availability a lot of out the box scouting from within or afar is now a Blue light emergency.

Lastly,and not to pick a fight with all and sundry but lets get this right, their (Liverpool) fans are active/pro active as mt Etna,Our fans (with old now exceptions)
are completely Dormant.

Paul Cherrington
72 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:05:56
The problem we have at Everton is a section of the fanbase who are as much in a dreamworld as the current manager is. It is these people who are the issue and the reason we are sitting in the relegation places now. Before anyone says you cannot blame the fans, I'm afraid in this situation you can blame a very vocal section of ours.

Why is this? Because their protests and moaning forced the board's hand and saw Allardyce out of a job to begin with. This then meant we had to go out and find another manager. If some fans had put their personal prejudices to one side and actually seen what a decent job Big Sam was doing, the board would not have sacked him and we would not have Silva in charge now.

After all, the league position we finished in with Allardyce in charge doesn't look too bad now, does it? As far as I am concerned, you can shove this obsession with attacking football and expansive play off a cliff. Give me guts, passion, motivation, desire, team spirit, togetherness. That is what wins you games and that is why Moyes and Allardyce will always do better than a manager like Silva. Teams will not just let us come out and play pretty passing patterns around them because that's what we would like to happen. We have to earn the right to play first and be tough to beat and hard to score against.

Until some fans wake up from this fantasy football dreamworld and realise we need a manager who will make us tough to play against and organised first and foremost, we have no hope. After the Martinez debacle, I would have thought this would have happened… but obviously not.

Brian Harrison
73 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:23:51
Frank 65

You say that Gueye made it clear he wanted to leave, he didnt PSG made an offer In Jan and Everton turned it down. Gueye like the good professional he is carried on putting in top class performances. At no stage did Gueye put in a transfer request. In fact in an interview he gave just days after joining PSG in the summer he said he thought his chance to join them had gone in the jan window. So in my book we did let him go, he had years left on his contract so there was no pressure on Everton to sell him.

I would also remind you that in the summer Everton and Arsenal put in bids for Zaha, he was so disappointed that neither move was agreed he put in a transfer request and publickly stated he didnt want to play for Palace. Despite that Palace kept hold of him and he is still their star performer every week.

Matthew Williams
74 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:28:11
In order to keep his job for me, he has to stop the bleeding and get us into the top half of the table as fast as possible – ready for the no doubt onslaught in the December fixtures.

Add to that, our faithful long-suffering away fans need to experience some untold joy at Wembley come Easter time too. If neither is achieved, then he gets booted, not before, folks.

Derek Knox
75 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:33:15
Lyndon, bang on with your in depth report, which, as I have seen by the responses above, the vast majority are wholeheartedly in total agreement.

Unfortunately neither Brands or Moshiri read ToffeeWeb, to the best of my knowledge, which is a pity really as they would be made aware, (if they hadn't already suspected so) of the groundswell of how US, the fans really feel.

That is not just about the dubious future of Silva, but the fact that the Board have made so many foolish decisions and squandered a King's Ransom in the process. Which, in itself is bad enough, but the same mistakes have continued to be made.

Nicholas Ryan
76 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:35:30
'Brands was responsible for allowing Gueye to leave...'. Oh, please! So, LFC were 'responsible' for 'allowing' Sterling to go to City; and Spurs were 'responsible' for 'allowing' Bale to go to Real Madrid, and Barca were 'responsible' for 'allowing' Neymar to go to PSG ….. need I go on!!
Seb Niemand
77 Posted 08/10/2019 at 13:36:24
I'm just going to say it, no-one wants to hear it, I know, but I am going to be the one lone mad voice in the wilderness...

The two first and foremost managers we need to consider:

1. Guus Hiddink
2. David Moyes.

Ken Kneale
78 Posted 08/10/2019 at 14:17:44
Dave Williams. I truly have no idea what
Ferguson does other than draw a salary and keep a dugout seat warm. I can see what he is not doing given the inept state of our forwards on a regular basis
Steve Ferns
79 Posted 08/10/2019 at 14:35:19
Derek, they don't need to read Toffeweb to hear the boos. They know. But they heard them last season and they went away. They are not sacking Silva before West Ham, so they are gambling that like last season he can make them go away, and he can only do that by winning games.

You need to try and see things from Moshiri’s angle. If we get Mourinho in, then he wants £25m a year, for at least 3 seasons. That was his Man Utd wage. So £75m, although I think we’d need to offer him £100m but could talk him into a 4 year deal. Then there is the way he manages, he will not come unless he has money to spend, so we’d need £300m or so to spend. The Mourinho project is going to cost us £350m+. FFP won’t allow it for starters, but the bigger question is, who is going to pay for that? Moshiri? I don’t think he wants to, and I certainly don’t think FFP would allow it. Do not forget that Moshiri will not like Mourinho. Mourinho does not get on with owners. He falls out with them everytime. He agrees to a set of conditions, and he always ask for more. He says it is the job of a manager to ask for more. Mourinho doesn’t just ask for more in the board room, or behind the scenes, he does it in the press and in press-conferences and Moshiri will know this and would not want it to happen to him.

So, we consider the Watford model. Watford’s model was working great. They got a guy in to get them promoted, job done, moved him on. They got a guy in to keep them up, job done, moved him on. They got a guy in to push them up the table, job done. They hit a rocky patch, get rid of the guy who can play good football and go back to a guy who can solidify them and push them back up the table. Not working so far but it’s early days. So, we could look for coaches to come in and work to a short term brief. Job 1, Big Sam, keep us up. Move him on, find a Javi Gracia to get us back to 8th (and he is available), then move him on. Then find a Pochettino to get us into the top 4. Then find Jurgen Klopp to take us to title challengers and then find us Guardiola to dominate the league. The problem being, the Big Sam’s don’t want a 6 month contract, not unless you pay them a 3 year salary for 6 months work, like we did. So we gamble on a Walter Mazzari type to keep us up. New to the Premier League and so a gamble for sure, but because of such more likely to come in on a one year deal. Not Mazzari himself but someone like Claude Puel. There’s no margin for error with this model though. Bad run of games and it all came crashing down and Watford are most people’s favourites for the drop. I doubt we’d follow suit if we adopted this model, but it can all come crashing down with a bad appointment or a bad run of games.

So, if we did a Watford, but with more cash, we could get someone like Dyche in for 18 months. Pay him for 3 seasons, but only keep him for 18 months unless he performs spectacularly or shows signs of growing himself as a manager. Then as we are re-established back where Moyes hit his glass ceiling, we could turn to someone like Eddie Howe and hope he’s able to break through it with a more expansive game. Finding a Klopp and a Guardiola would be much easier once we broke into the top 4 and moved into the new stadium.

We are going to stay with the current model though. Bright young coach, working with Brands, and coaching the players Brands buys, hired due to a similar view in how football should be played and selected because he can coach the players we have. This setup is best done in the summer. Clean slate for the new guy. Blank canvass. Time to work with the players and prepare for the season. Identification of the coach, as someone who can be a Pochettino type, is difficult. How do you find a Pochettino? To be Pochettino he must have done it already, and to do it already, he’d be out of our league. So we look abroad, and you’re back looking at people like Silva, with his success abroad. It’s extremely difficult to identify a good young coach who will do something without actually having done it yet. Like Arteta for example, how can we know how good he can be, or indeed how bad he will be? How will he cope with a run like now? Great young coach with fresh ideas, supposedly, but can he manage a dressing room, can he leave players out, can he make tough decisions and standby them. Brands finding a successor to Silva, in the summer is going to be a very hard task. It’s an almost impossible task right now. The pool to pick from is limited, the time to consider them is even more limited and it all leads to bad appointments.

Which is why I think there is only two real options right now for Brands. Silva or Unsworth. Give Silva time to turn it around, or don’t but give himself time to line up a replacement (he could be identified and ready to come in at the end of the season) and let Silva see out the season. If Silva’s position reaches the point where it is untenable, then Unsworth is drafted in to see the season out.

Of course, we could persuade Dyche to get on board the Everton project and go for the Watford model, but find that he’s actually a gruff voiced Guardiola never given the opportunity to prove himself. But that comes down to Brands identifying the right coach for our set of circumstances.

So who are Everton? We are not a big club. We all think we are, but big clubs don’t go 25 years without a trophy. All the commercial factors show that Everton are 7th to 9th in terms of commercial appeal. On a par with Villa, West Ham, and Newcastle. We’re a club that yoyos between midtable and 6th, or more recently 7th. We are also about to be a club that is on for their 5th manager in 6 seasons. Any up and coming manager will be wary of that. Will this club give me time. The answer looks to be no. And that’s a bug turn off. We’re a club that can kill your career. An ambitious manager will be better placed looking for a more stable club. So the next appointment is extremely difficult and I think it is also extremely important.

Another bad appointment, another 18 months of initial ascension to be followed by it all coming crashing down again, could convince Moshiri to pull the plug. He’s made stupid mistakes, but he’s thrown money into it. He’s got nothing back. How long before the accountant in him tells him to cut his losses and walk away, and what state would we be in if Moshiri did pull the plug? Moshiri needs to trust in Brands, and Brands needs to get this right.

Ian Riley
80 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:06:54
Is Silva a manager or coach? Director of football calling the shots on transfers. How much say does the manager/coach have on transfers? The players we have let go have not been replaced. Lukaku a 20 plus goals a season will get you to 40 points. First time since mid eighties a proven goalscorer. Gueye was my biggest concern as he was the work horse of the midfield and never replaced. Just two quality players who wanted more and now play at champions league clubs.

These players form the spine of any team. Our spine is weak but third from bottom of the league, no. I think our work rate is poor. Why do I think this is due to the teams we have played, Burnley, Aston Villa, Sheffield united, Bournemouth. Not the quality players we have but their work rate is higher than ours. This comes from the manager and coaching team.

Silva needs to get the work rate up during matches. Quality players means nothing over work rate. Silva needs to up his body language as at present it looks like I haven't got a clue impression. We can't bring players in till January so either Silva changes his approach or the club brings a new manager in.

Jay Harris
81 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:15:17
Lyndon I don't disagree with your assessment of Silva I just think there are other issues at work in the corridors of power that undermine the playing side.

I see Moyes has been made odds on to replace Silva. Very worrying.

I looked up the careers of Ten Hag and Graham Potter both of whom I think would do a really good job.

I was surprised to see ten Hag worked at Bayern and studied Guardiolas football philosophy which he adopted for the Bayern 11 team he managed (a sort of reserve side) combined with his own philosophy.

He has a high win ratio averaging over 60% and managed a young Ajax side to the CL semifinal last year where they were unlucky to lose to Spurs.

Graham Potter has a less illustrious profile but nonetheless has also had a successful stint at managing. He managed in the Swedish league very successfully and was then headhunted by Swansea where he did very well before being poached by Brighton.

Both are very long odds with the bookies. I just hope the board don't fuck up another appointment with Bill getting his way regarding Moyes.

Tony Hill
82 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:18:09
Suggestions of money piling on to Moyes. May God help us all, that would be the final kick in the nuts.
Steve Ferns
83 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:23:32
Jay, he managed Bayern u23s and they play in the third tier in Germany. Please note that this is a standard far below our own third tier and crowds are more on par with the Football conference.

Edit: it was actually the fourth tier when ten Hag was there.

Tony Hill
84 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:24:46
According to our friend, Richard Keys, Silva is deeply unpopular with his own staff, let alone the players.
Derek Knox
85 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:31:13
Steve @ 79, I take on board what you are saying, but I'm afraid in many ways Moshiri can only point the finger at himself for agreeing and sanctioning a lot of the profligate spending.

Okay, we all know he knows little about the game, even more reason to check and double check before making rash and expensive decisions both on manager's and players alike.

I presume that is why he has appointed Brands and then quickly elevated him to Board level, but I believe the decision to get Silva on board was already in place before his appointment.

Maybe there is some mileage in the Ten Hag connections with Ajax, and presumably Brands knows him too, fingers crossed if that is the case.

Jer Kiernan
86 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:39:28
People People please things are depressing enough without mentioning Phil Neville FFS ?

How can anybody mention a guy whos is failling badly with the England womens team ( a job I reckon he only got as there was zero chance of him having any romantic issues with the players !!) has don't nothing in football was a squad player at Man U and even LESS as a manager

Eddie Howe has managed to stay in the Prem for how many seasons now ? on a shoestring ? he is a life long Evertonian and his teams play with passion, He wont cost a fortune or require a 300m kitty for players

I also think he would jump at the chance of managing us (pushes both hands together with fingers intertwining)

Get Eddie Howe please

Kieran Kinsella
87 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:40:52
Dan 41, Tom 71,

Do you think its results driven apathy or age? I am at the same point as Dan myself. 25 years ago I knew every player in every team, watched every game I could regardless of who was playing. As of this season I have reached a new minimalist level. If I can't watch Everton live, my only football viewing is watching highlights IF Everton win. So basically I have watched virtually nothing this year.

But anyway, I wonder if it's partly age driven. When I was 18 I worked in a bar with a bunch of 40-something year old former fans. They all told me how they USED to be season ticket holders, etc but lost interest because "money has ruined the game," "local spirit has been lost" etc. This was in about 1997. So I am wondering if circumstances are driving more of us to apathy (even Colin Glassar said similar on the last match thread) or is it age driven -- allowing for exceptions such as the venerable John McFarlane?

Steve Ferns
88 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:42:35
Jer, I hated Phil Neville as a player, and I'd hate him as a manager. Some liked him because he kicked Ronaldo. Hibbert kicked people all the time and let less get passed him, yet he got dogs abuse. Phil Neville's record as a manager looks pretty poor to me.
Eddie Dunn
89 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:44:37
Steve Ferns "We’re a club that can kill your career. An ambitious manager will be better placed looking for a more stable club".
Have a look at the PL table and how many clubs have changed their managers. There are only Liverpool, Man City, Spurs, Burnley and Wolves where a manager has been in the hot seat for a few years or more.
I think that coaches/managers now accept the brevity of an appointment and mostly they are adequately compensated for early termination.
I don't think that is any reason for not coming to us.
We just have to convince a coach that we want to succeed, we want to play attacking football and we want to get into Europe.
We have plans for the new stadium and are regularly spending plenty of cash on new players.
In terms of player recruitment we have been a convenient stepping stone for Lukaku and Gueye to fullfill their CL ambitions, hence the likes of Richarlison and Kean have come on board.
As pesimistic as many of us feel, with our red friends on course to win the title, let us not demean ourselves too much!
If Leicester can entice Rogers then surely we can get someone decent.
Also it isn't as black and white as you suggest. We don't have to "do a Watford", we can appoint (for argument's sake) Howe, and give him 3 years and give him full backing. We don't have to employ someone like Allardyce.
I agree that now will not be the best time to find the right man but we will struggle to find the right guy if we slide into the Championship.
I expect that you are right though and Moshiri and co will hold fire, as the mess will be hard to sort out.
Let's just hope Silva does what he did last year.
Iain Latchford
90 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:47:15
Jer, Neville won 6 Premier Leagues, 3 FA Cups and the Champions League. That's hardly doing nothing in football.

Would you say Lampard isn't qualified to manage Chelsea, after only doing one year in the Championship, in which his team didn't get promoted?

Kieran Kinsella
91 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:48:50
No way on Phil Neville. I don't watch women's football but to me it seemed as if he waltzed into that job with no qualifications just because he was probably the most high profile former England male player who was interested. He doesn't seem to have performed any better than his predecessors so how does that qualify him for the EPL. Also, politically correct or not, let's not kid ourselves, the standard of play, tactics, competition level of women's international football is hardly comparable with the EPL>
Jer Kiernan
92 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:53:01
On paper he won those things yeah ? but how much of a role did he actually play ( bit parts I would say) he is not a manager, would not inspire and has no experience

Eddie would be here because he wants to has proven track record as a manager in the toughest league in world football

Lampard is a different kettle of fish I firmly believe and always have that he would make a great manager some day he has a great head on his shoulders is articulate and was a very astute footballer ,

I have been looking for an excuse to ditch this team after 30 years of misery ( i survived Fat Sam) but appointing Pip would find me on the bowling green or in a feckin pottery shed of a Saturday

Its a no brainer for me ITS EDDIE TIME :)

Iain Latchford
93 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:54:23
To be clear. I wouldn't put Neville in the frame based on anything he has or hasn't done in the women's game.

Iain Latchford
94 Posted 08/10/2019 at 15:59:16
Jer, between 1997 & 2004 he was playing around 30 games a season for them in the Premier League alone. I wouldn't call that bit part. He played more games for Utd than he did for Everton.

Howe's "proven" track record is keeping a small club in the PL. He's won nothing as a player or manager.

Jeff Spiers
95 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:04:17
Eddie Howe and his family are settled on the south coast. Period.
Steve Ferns
96 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:07:01
Iain, he started about half of those games and his impact was limited as a result. It might be a bit more than a bit-part but he never played more than 30 games a season for them. He wasn't good enough for them. He was for us, but I never liked the guy. I thought he had a defeatist attitude as a captain and never classed him as a winner, more of a whiner.
Jer Kiernan
97 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:07:28
At least thats something we agree on cant believe he is getting mentioned I think he is a clown to be honest

I know you championed Silva very much but you must now conceed the chances of him turning this around are slim to none, let alone being the man to bring us forwards

The one thing I will say is that I believe this one of the BEST jobs in football if the right man with a pair of balls and some passion can take the preverbial bull by the horns , I believe we have a Top 5/6 squad and have a chairman with some spending power and new Stadium coming


Kieran Kinsella
98 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:08:02
Jer 92

I always found David Pleat very articulate and Kenny Dalglish and Alex Ferguson much less so. Their speech patterns had little effect on their respective managerial careers.

Iain Latchford
99 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:14:29
I'm not saying Neville should be the number one contender. I do think we could do worse though.

I'd much rather have him and someone like Cahill in the dressing room, than Silva and Boa Morte who don't look capable of motivating the players at all.

Jer Kiernan
100 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:18:05
@ Kieran
Maybe articulate is a bad example but to be honest I always ask myself would this guy inspire ME ? or would I think he is a dick

I always put Pip in the 2nd category and I think the players even the womens team are doing right now, ,

Eddie Howes teams at least play with passion, I am not saying he is the man to lead us to the Champs lge final but I definitely think its time we gave him a go at it

The guy has worked well at this level on a shoestring for many seasons its time somebody gave him a chance at higher level, he is an Evertonian( pushes hands together with fingers intertwining !!! )

Bill Watson
101 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:22:06
Phil Neville? No thanks. He has no experience, whatsoever. I like the women's game but it's totally different. Not better and not worse but different. If you were to compare it to the men's game (and you shouldn't as it is a different game) the standard is around year 10/11 schoolboys, at best.

Eddie Howe? No thanks. Defensively he hasn't a clue.

Arteta? No thanks. Absolutely no experience, at all.

If Silva is sacked I want an experienced manager with a half decent track record. If that means having Unsworth as a caretaker, until the end of the season, I'm OK with that. He surely couldn't be worse than Silva!

Raymond Fox
102 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:22:54
I said some months ago that I thought Silva looked the nervous type unsuited to a position of football manager. He's appeared that way to me from the start, not the guys fault I might add, if that's your nature your stuck with it. Assistant manager would suit him much better.

What we don't want is a another bang average manager or a new wannabe first time one, that would be asking for trouble again.
The perfect choice in my eyes would be Benitez (we have most probably missed that boat anyway) I realise that some object to him for his red connections and things he has said - probably in response to goading from our side.
At least we know the guy has experienced everything thrown at him at club level and has actually knows how to win things, in other words as safe a pair of hands as it is possible to find.
Apart from him I haven't a clue who else would fit the bill, I don't fancy any of the names mentioned as possibilities.

Steve Ferns
103 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:23:29
Jer, of course there's concerns. But I don't know how everyone can be so sure it's motivation based on interviews in Press-conferences and split second footage from the TV of him on the sidelines. Some on here would like Bielsa. He's enthralling to me in his press conferences because it's like a footballing lesson. But most of you who don't like tactics would find him boring. He is very monotone like Silva. He doesn't have Klopp charisma. He also is worse than Silva on the sidelines. He can look extremely despondent at times, at on his bucket / coolbox with his head in his hands, shaking his head, wishing he could go for a cigarette. But this guy is a master motivator. His players all say so, and it's how he gets them to run 100 drills of the same basic move (exaggeration before anyone starts). You cannot judge motivation based on press-conferences, interviews and touchline demeanour. If you know different from the players themselves, or from people watching the training or in the changing rooms, then fair enough. To say it's motivation is conjecture and it could be that or it could be something else like a complete lack of confidence.
Kieran Kinsella
104 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:24:51

You're way off base attacking Neville as a player. If he wasn't good enough for Utd, how did he play 28 league games and 44 total games in 99 when they won the trouble. The same year, Giggs played 24 in the league and 41 total. For 1998 through 2004, Neville's league appearances were: 30,28,29,29,25,31. Giggs by comparison played 29,24,30,31,25,36,33. So by your reckoning Giggsy was also a bit part player who wasn't good enough. Neville was a decent enough RB and an OK utility man. The problem was Moyes trying to use him as a playmaker not an RB. He is much like Alana Harper who was nominally a RB but played anywhere needed. Would we remember Harper so fondly if Kendall tried to play him as a left winger every week just because he played there on a few occasions?
Also, as far as "winning mentality" goes. His Ronaldo tackle was seen as the catalyst that turned that result. A whiner mentality would be someone like Silva who blames Watford's failings on their transfer activity despite having a record spend, and doing quite nicely after he left.

Steve Ferns
105 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:28:40
#98 Kieran, that's spot on. David Pleat is a very insightful commentator, and I always thought Graham Taylor was not bad either. Both clearly had great analytical skills, but it did not change how dour their sides where.

Can we also remember that in the 80s the players all got on the coach and listened to Big Nev's mixtape, played cards, had a laugh and a joke. Nowadays all players have their headphones on, listen to their own music and are in complete isolation. Knowing teenagers as I do, I bet they all look at their feet and grunt when given instructions in the dressing room. I don't see many characters in the dressing room, more seem like introverts. Maybe you do need a Klopp figure to get through to these guys, but don't forget how much he struggled himself in his last season at Dortmund. His clown antics and persona didn't help him then.

Steve Ferns
106 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:29:57
Kieran, how many did Neville start?
Steve Ferns
107 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:32:58
Raymond, for a nervous guy, he showed a lot of bottle applauding the fans against Burnley!
Jer Kiernan
108 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:33:04
@Steve 103
I don't want to seem like I am saying I told you so here ? I am not a bit happy how things have gone with Silva although I didnt want him I did support him

And I know its not easy to take an opinion and stand by what you believe and you do a lot of really good work on analysing things on TW which is a benefit to all on the site so is genuinely appreciated

But can you confirm please ? you do or you don't think Silva can become the manager to bring our team to the next level ? for whatever the reason is ? motivation/passion tactics ??

For me the chance of it happening are slim to none, We need to begin our search for a new man

People please Neville is not the Answer , let him fail in the championship first and see

John Boon
109 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:34:58
Having watched Everton for endless years it is more than obvious that we are going through a very difficult time and most of the posts I have read concur that the present set up is just not working. However I cannot agree with Steve Ferns on NOT viewing us as a big club. It is very difficult to defend his assessment when we consider achievements over the last twenty years,. However there were 110 season before the last twenty and that must be taken into consideration.

I actually watched Everton lose 6-0 on the last day of the 1951 season.This resulted in relegation to Division 2. It wasn't too surprising because we had been lousy every season since the end of the war. I say this because we didn't win anything until 1963 when we became champions. First time since 1939. That is quite a stretch.

Yes it is really hard at the present time but Evertonians have been spoiled when compared to almost ant team. Some Facts.

Since Football first started some 150 years ago we have been relegated twice yes two times in all those years. Here are some relegation statistics of fellow opponents. Number of times relegated.

1 Leicester 11
2 Manchester City 10
3 Bolton 8
4 Sunderland 8
5 Derby 8
6 C.Palace 6 .
If we explore further the above are just a few examples. In fact Grimsby have been relegated 16 times.

Back to US. We have spent 138 years in the Top division. By far the best. We have now spent 65 consective years in the Top flight.Second only to Arsenal. We have won the league 9 times and the FA cup 5 times. Sorry Steve and anyboby else but historically WE ARE A BIG CLUB. We are having a very rough and long period of time but in my mind we will always be a big club.

Silva will not stop us from being a big club. I will support my Blues my beloved "BLUES" through thick and thin. We do not have the divine right to be top of the league but compared to any club we do have the divine right to be considered a big club.

Right now we are lousy, dreadful to watch, and it makes me want to tear out the little bit of grey hairt that I still have left. But for the last eighty years I have been very lucky to be an Evertonian. It has been and always will be a major part of my life. We should never have to be compared to the likes of Chelsea, Tottenham, Man City and of course THEM over the park. Once more let the real history speak for itself.

I really do appreciate the stress and difficulty for younger fans who have not seen the successes of the past, but don't ever let anyone tell you that we are not a big club. We will not be relegated. We will have a bad season for 2019 and I agree that is obvious but we will rise again. That is because we are a "BIG" club. I do hope my "Blue Heaven" will be on planet earth. Come on you Blues we still have time.

Mark Guglielmo
110 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:41:13
Rick @49 Silva didn't sign anyone. Brands (and his predecessors) did.
Kieran Kinsella
111 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:43:40

Can't find specifics for that time frame as premier league etc only seem to show starts but for his whole career at United, Neville played 210 games and came on as sub in 52 of those so 75% of his games he started. By comparison, Giggs started in 79% of his games, and Solskjaer started in 44% of his.

Steve Ferns
112 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:43:41
Jer, I am certain I will have the last laugh! I'm an Everton fan born in the wrong era having seen no success in my adult life and having few memories from games I have been to as a kid of the glorious '80s, and the last trophy we won occurring in the middle of my GCSE's. So, unwavering belief, and strength in adversity are skills I learnt watching Everton. I have never given up easily and I stand by Silva. There may be a lot of doubts about certain aspects, even more frustration as to why he's not more like the Marco Silva I saw at Sporting, and disbelief at some of the decisions he made.

However, we could have beat Villa, we should have beat Villa, and the same goes for Sheff Utd, Bournemouth, and Burnley, and we could have beat City. You might not agree but we had the chances. A bit of luck, better finishing, or just a bit more from some of the players and we would have won any of those games. The chances were also there against City. We forced a record amount of saves from Ederson and City had to play well to beat us, if they played like they did at the weekend or Norwich, then we could have won.

For me, that's the big difference to other managers. The signs are still there to turn it around. We just need a bit of fortune, and I can see us going on a hot streak and would hope that Silva can still save the season.

However, I wouldn't rule him out limping to a top 10 finish and getting the bullet in the summer and someone like ten Hag coming in then.

Kieran Kinsella
113 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:47:14
John 109

The problem is, what does "big" mean to you versus Steve, versus anyone else. As Michael Owen said of Newcastle, "they are big only in terms of their attendance." Generally, these days "big" is code for "competitive." In that respect we are not currently "big."

Steve Ferns
114 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:48:42
Ok then Kieran, not my recollection, but if those are the stats, then fair enough. Still never liked the guy. And I always thought he had a defeatist attitude and if you think the opposite, then fair enough.

John, Everton are a big club to us, but go ask any someone who doesn't support us form outside the UK to name 6 Premier League Clubs, I would bet we are not in it. We're not as well known as we once were.

John, look at the commercial figures and you'll see that the merchandise, particularly shirt sales, other items, social media followers, and all those other indicators have us lagging far behind where you would expect us to be. The demand is just not there. If you think we can be classed as a big club despite that, then fair enough. But for me, there can only be a handful of big clubs in the Premier League. We're back to being a sleeping giant.

Sam Hoare
115 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:49:43
Here's a manager I have decided is close to my number one pick:

He's won trophies in a variety of (admittedly weaker) leagues and has been doing a great job in Germany for the last two seasons.

He has an overall career win percentage of 55% (which will take a beating if he comes here!) and plays a flexible pressing system not too dissimilar to Silva.

Think he could be an excellent fit. Any takers?

Steve Ferns
116 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:50:50
That's what I meant Kieran, thanks!
Steve Ferns
117 Posted 08/10/2019 at 16:53:54
Sam, only know him to have been the successor to Niko Kovac. Kovac did a great job. So how much is it down to Kovac and how much is down to him? He's one to watch for sure, Sam.
Tony Everan
118 Posted 08/10/2019 at 17:04:53
Adolf Hutter ?

Air raid sirens ?

Search lights instead of floodlights for night games?

Joking aside, looks a talented manager.

Raymond Fox
119 Posted 08/10/2019 at 17:14:56
Not for me Sam, we need someone that most fans have heard of, If he went on a bad run there would be cries of 'sack him' before he had got his feet under the table.
Our best option at this time I think is to stick with Silva even with his deficiencies, surely it should be possible to improve on what we have been producing of late, there's a decent team somewhere in there waiting to come out.
Kieran Kinsella
120 Posted 08/10/2019 at 17:26:12

Someone we know? Plus our best managers have been Geordies or thereabouts. It’s got to be Steve Bruce. Lol

Dale Rose
121 Posted 08/10/2019 at 17:42:37
Steve Ferns, at least you wont need a manicure for a few months the amount of typing you've done today. All good points though.
Steve Ferns
122 Posted 08/10/2019 at 17:47:09
Don’t worry Dale!

Raymond, I agree and agree we need to stick with silva.

If we twist, then Unsworth has enough goodwill to lift the gloom and get us to the end of season where we can re-evaluate. If not him, then the best little Spaniard we know could be a gamble worth taking. The fans would give him all the time he needs to find his feet and he’ll also work with Brands as he knows no different.

That’s my three choices in order of preference.

David Thomas
123 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:03:36
Times are grim if our options are Silva or Unsworth. It hardly inspires confidence that better times are around the corner.
Jer Kiernan
124 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:03:57
@Steve 112
Of a similar era ( although I do recall slaggin Man U supporters for having won nothing in 30yrs !!) battle hardened, always looking for the next horizon, but have to say starting to feel it after 30yrs ( I thought it would get easier with age!!)

Anyways you are standing by your man it would be some turnaround from the incipid performances I have witnessed this year and feel many sides have handed us the incentive as opposed to us taking it but let us see

I would like to see Eddie Howe get offered a 3 year contract (should Silva not pull the rabbit out of his hat)

Paul Burns
125 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:04:23
This is not a good side.

There are a handful of decent players among the squad but you couldn't put together a good 11 capable of even competing for trophies, no matter how many permutations you tried from all the options on offer.

If nobody at the club, including our supporters, is capable of realising that stark reality, then we really are in serious trouble.

Michael Williams
126 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:26:50
We have a lesser team than last year without Gana and Zouma. Gana was the midfield anchor that allowed the other midfielders to play to their potential. Gana’s absence cannot be overestimated. Zouma was the CB that carried the ball out and led the pairing with Keane. Zouma provided solidity in the back. We lost the two key players that made five other players play better.

We still don’t have a striker that can score consistently.

I agree with the author about the faults he lays out about Silva. I am tired of watching the same losing tactics every week as well. We should be playing better no doubt but this team is not all that it is made out to be.

Sam Hoare
127 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:29:21
Steve@117, yes, always difficult to know who to give credit to but Hutter had an even higher win % at Frankfurt than Kovac and seems to be doing ok despite them selling Jovic, Haller and Rebic (their entire attack!) this summer.

Raymond@119 I know what you mean but I think the fans will turn quickly on whoever comes in if things begin to wobble. We saw that with Unsworth. Everyone is so frusrated with the last 5 years that patience is at a minimum. I can already see the vitriol:

Benitez: "What the f*** do you expect from a RS twat who called us small?"

Mourinho: "He's got no history of managing small clubs, we're not big enough for his oversized ego!"

Howe: "He's never won anything! And he was useless at Burnley"

Dyche: "He plays not to lose. Fine for Burnley but this is Everton we're talking"

Wilder: "Spent most of his career managing in the lower leagues and that's his standard."

Arteta: "He was an assistant, its different. Why are we giving him his first job, we needed someone who knows how to run a team."

Moyes: "Didn't work last time why on earth did Moshiri think it would this time?!"

Every manager has baggage that the fans will use against them every time we hit a dodgy patch. It's going to be a poisoned chalice here make no mistake. I don't think it being someone known will necessarily help, all that matters is that the new person makes us better and gets us back into the top 8 to start with.

Chris Locke
128 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:37:37
I’ve been happy to give Silva a chance and didn’t jump on the bandwagon during last seasons slump.
The start of this season has made me question my faith in the current manager.
We played well and looked like a half decent team against Wolves. We set up without a DM and moved the ball around.
This stupidly gave me a ray of hope that the manager had taken the decision to attack our way to glory. I honestly thought he had finally decided to ditch the useless €$%^ Schneiderlin whilst playing a natural striker up front.
Instead we line up against Sheffield united at home with two DM’s and still manage to concede easily.
We are so easy to beat and our inability to come from behind is a disgrace. Those stats alone should worry Silva but as usual we seem to have chosen a manager who doesn’t actually give a hoot.
I’m starting to wonder if we are all being fooled and Silva (and his predecessors) are just puppets and Evertons team and tactics are being chosen by a panel of dirty reds.
Steve Ferns
129 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:51:56
Sam, Unsworth got some stick on here, Twitter, other sites, and phone ins. The fans at the ground were 100% behind him. He was immune to criticism for us. There was lots of boos though and for once all the frustration was on the players.

Now, what part did that play in the turnaround? How was that a tool for Unsworth to use on the players. Maybe the big stars didn’t like some fat bloke they had never heard of, stepping up from the u23s to coach them, but knowing the fans were ripping into them now, and not Koeman meant that they had no hiding place and maybe, just maybe that was a factor In the turnaround, a motivational tool that got through to the players. Because let’s not forget that the turnaround in the league started with Unsworth and not Allardyce.

The situation is not as bad this time as last time. There’s also no European football ant this means more time for Unsworth to come in and change things like set pieces and work with the players to do his way of playing. I didn’t think the team were fit enough under Koeman but I think they are now. I don’t think Unsworth will need to do too much. And again, if the results go against us, the fans will give it to the players not to him. Likewise with Arteta. Either of those two would retain the goodwill of the fans and woe-betide our overpaid underperforming players.

John Boon
130 Posted 08/10/2019 at 18:53:35
Steve(114). Everything you say is absolutely correct in response to my post (109). However I am ruled by my heart and history. History did not start in 1993 it started around 1852. I actually don't really care what other supporters think.

Money has corrupted Football and given too many teams undue respect due only to MONEY. Chelsea is the best example and now followed by Man City. I actually think of Man City as a big club and did even when they were playing Gillingham in Division 3. Chelsea were always a joke and for me they will remain so.

As for fans around the world they are probably as fickle as the Norwegian fans who support the RS and have the nerve to ever be considered as Scousers. All supporters in countries around the world, other than those born in Liverpool and area, only pick teams who are near the top of the league. This is like backing a horse when it is ten length ahead of the rest. They don't use History. I still do and don't care about shirt sales.

I am truly a biased loyal Blue Evertonian and whatever you or anyone else thinks WE ARE A BIG CLUB in fact THE BIGGEST. I do not respond to statistics or even common sense. No team will ever be bigger even after losing to Villa, Bournemouth,Man City and Burnley. By the way Steve I do know that you are a true Blue Evertonian. You are just not biased enough to really enjoy being one. Please burn all your Statistic books.

Kieran Kinsella
131 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:00:05
Steve 129

The media had it out for Unsworth too for whatever reason. First Joey Barton started this campaign against him for being too fat to manage the team. Then Royle popped down to the bench during a game (maybe to take half time tea orders?) and the media portrayed it as Royle having to tell Unsworth how to do his job. It was unfair and a lot like what happened to John Carver at Newcastle. Another low profile, backroom coach, decent bloke asked to step in. The media asked him stupid loaded questions about his tactics etc versus others and he in trying to explain he was doing his best joked "in my mind I am the best manager in the world." That was spun into "Carver claims he is better than Guardiola," and the poor guy was hounded.

I think it's ironic because the media constantly complain about "flash foreigners" taking our jobs. But they absolutely crucify English coaches, especially ones who aren't high profile.

Raymond Fox
132 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:00:26
For anyone that takes any notice of the betting, its saying that we will finish 9th or 10th at the seasons close, and we are 10/11 to beat West Ham on the 19th.

While those that shall be nameless are 4/6 to win the League.

Steve Croston
133 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:02:17
It's funny how Silva gets the blame for this current mess.
If someone offered me the job, I'd take it and the inevitable multi million pound payoff at the end too.
Whoever appointed him, Koeman and Martinez needs a good pistol whipping, because it's they who are to blame.
Marco Silva looks like a bullied child who has been given the house captain job at a public school, a fish out of water if you will. But I bet he laughed his incompetent ass off when he was offered the job at Goodison.
Whoever made, or had a hand in, the last 3 appointments, please stay WELL AWAY from the next selection process.
Up the Blues!!!
Dale Rose
134 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:15:23
Steve Ferns, at least you wont need a manicure for a few months the amount of typing you've done today. All good points though.
Iain Latchford
135 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:16:34
AC Milan have just sacked their coach. Let's see who ends up there.
Ash Moore
136 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:23:42
@ Iain L - #135

Well it won't be not so magic Marco.

@ Mike Gaynes

Black pepper for the truffle oil, thrice cooked chips and charcoal steak sir?

Steve Ferns
137 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:25:42
Kieran, yeah I remember. My point though was that we fans would give Unsworth or Arteta more time than someone else. Any issues in the short term would be directed at those most responsible.

Iain, I would expect to see Gasperini given the job. Remember him? He did us 5-1 at Goodison.

Kieran Kinsella
138 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:32:34
Be brilliant if Moyes got the Milan job. Just imagine his first presser "we are in a relegation battle, I am bringing a knife to the gunfight." The Milanese would love that.
Iain Latchford
139 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:32:46
I do indeed Steve. When Unsworth was caretaker manager.
Steve Ferns
140 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:38:23
Yeah, Kenwright told him to pick the kids, and the fans all stayed away. 17,000 were supposedly in the ground. I turned up with 4 tickets in the people's club and couldn't give them away. I reckon those 3 extra tickets were counted as people inside the ground as 17,000 there was not.
Steve Ferns
141 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:40:05
As a motivational tool, Silva should play his players a recording of a Moyes press conference and tell them that this is their future if they don't beat West Ham. If that does not motivate them, I don't know what will.
Joe McMahon
142 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:40:39
Steve@137. Made me smile that, but we can't always go by teams that have thrased Everton at Goodison, Everton 0 Bolton 4 and Everton 1 WBA 4, so that's Big Sam and (I think) Roberto Do Matteo (why did West Brom sack him?)
Joe McMahon
143 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:43:35
Steve@141, Moyes should have used that press conference at Sunderland!

Why didn't he play it everytime Everton went to Anfield?

As you can see I'm not a fan of Mr Moyes

Mike Gaynes
144 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:51:48
Ash #136, yes please, and a bit of the ganache for dessert!
Mike Doyle
145 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:54:05
Silva would generate a bit more support if he at least tried something different rather than persevere with the same system, same (under-performing players) and ludicrously slow build up. Unfortunately he doesn’t seem willing too - and that will probably seal his downfall.
Expecting to see 2 holding mids + Siggy at no 10 + DCL as lone striker against West Ham (yawn).
Ash Moore
146 Posted 08/10/2019 at 19:57:19
@ Mike Gaynes.

Okay, I got the first laugh from here in ages then. I remember when I used to read the comments here and just about die of laughter. Thanks for an unfamiliar, but not unpleasant feeling - a genuine chuckle.

I'm off again, I'm doing some deck chair seat covers for this boss boat out of Liverpool. Name escapes me, but it's dead good, unsinkable and is actually heading your way I understand. I've got a mate moving the chairs around endlessly for the best configuration of space, comfort, positioning and to give the passengers the ultimate deck on a boat experience. Least I can do is unique environmentally friendly and carbon neutral designer seat covers innit?

Thanks again for the laugh.

PS - Thanks too for the recommendation for using the drive thru. I think being American that you're more used to the custom than us English, but it is a very good one. Means I can get my food and get out fast, whereas previously I'd hang around and wait for some of the old crowd to come by - and of course be disappointed or maudlin when they didn't. I feel your approach to be much more sensible for 2019. Many thanks again!

Kieran Kinsella
147 Posted 08/10/2019 at 20:01:04
Daily Mirror and Daily Express both reporting that David Moyes is "open" to returning to Everton. No kidding, he is on the dole. I guarantee Mike Walker, Gordon Lee etc are also "open" to returning to Everton.
Bobby Thomas
148 Posted 08/10/2019 at 20:49:36
Paul Tran #22

"I'm fed up of managers talking about confidence & mentality as if they're something abstract that they can't affect. It's a fundamental part of the job!"

Spot on. Koeman used to talk about things - how poorly we'd start matches etc - as if his role was merely incidental and not fundamental.

Let's be blunt. Silva's Everton side's are a bunch of absolute pussies. Millwall and Newcastle capitulations. Never coming back from conceding first. Terrible away record and terrified of the mighty Sheff United at home.

Apart from a half decent run at the back end of last season - when there was no pressure and the season was done, of course, it's been terrible since last Oct/Nov. Beating an utterly shite Man Utd means nothing.

There are clearly tactical and mentality/motivational issues that I don't think are going to go away. And then theres the dead balls, of course.

Peter Gorman
149 Posted 08/10/2019 at 20:53:49
Just one obvious nitpick Lyndon, you say this is a 'good side' but a 'good side' is one that performs on the pitch.

We don't. We are not a 'good side'.

Paul Hewitt
150 Posted 08/10/2019 at 21:12:02
Do I want Moyes back?. NO. But the negativity towards him, amazes me. How we'll have we done since he left?
Kieran Kinsella
151 Posted 08/10/2019 at 21:20:57
Moyes record at West Ham wasn't bad.


P 11 W 2 D 3 L 6

With Moyes:

P27 W8 D9 L10

Jay Wood

152 Posted 08/10/2019 at 21:46:10
There is such a plethora of these soul-searching articles on TW at the moment that it really is becoming difficult to keep up with them all and know who is saying what about the whos, hows and wherefores.

It's a sure sign that the club is in crisis.

As Lyndon writes, given how Everton closed out last season, together with the exceedingly benevolent opening fixtures of this season, it really is bewildering to find ourselves sat in the bottom 3 after 8 games with more challenging fixtures to come.

That's more than 20% of the season gone already.

As Lyndon also lays out, the necessary house cleansing of an underperforming and bloated squad on long and inflated contracts was understood by the vast majority of Blues. Tolerance and patience was extended towards both Brands and Silva in this regard.

Some are starting to point the finger of failure at Brands for not ensuring an extra centre back with the departures of Jags and Zouma, but to me it wasn't for the lack of trying or negligence. The last-minute and unexpected David Luiz transfer to Arsenal probably scuppered any chance of landing one of Chelsea's possible candidates.

Gana Gueye's departure was covered by the Delph and Gbamin signings, but injury to the latter has curtailed his chances of demonstrating he could prove to be a natural successor in that role.

If anything was neglected in the summer I would consider it was a proven central striker. Iwobi and Kean may yet prove decent recruits in their respective roles, but in particular the teenage Kean could not realistically be expected to take the PL by storm. Even less so in a struggling team, being asked to play the role he is.

What is more galling is - as other teams are proving in the still embryonic league table of this season - with Spurs, United, Chelsea and Arsenal all in different degrees of flux, there was (and is!) a real opportunity for a club to prise themselves in the much-desired CL placings.

Already, we look hamstrung and unlikely to be that club.

As has been the case with Marco Silva at all 3 of his PL clubs, it's either feast or famine with him. When it works, you get genuinely excited and feast on the scintillating, fast-flowing football combined with the clean sheets when the opposition barely approaches our penalty (which HAS happened under Silva). Then left bewildered and exasperated as from one game to the next it all evaporates and we endure the parched wasteland of slow, ponderous, sideways and backwards football, which seldom troubles the opposition goalkeeper, whereas our own penalty area resembles a Keystone Cop pinball machine with broken flippers.

Like many others I've long bemoaned the absence of gnarly narks and true leaders in Everton teams in recent years. Silva himself describes his own players as 'nervous' and lacking confidence.

Does our recruitment continue to neglect seeking out players with this vital ingredient? Could the manager be doing more to instil this in his players? After all, he has oft repeated that he only knows one way to improve things, by hard work.

But football management and leadership is not only about perspiration, is it? It should be about inspiration also. And in Marco Silva's bad times - and they are never fleeting, are they? - there is little evidence that he can inspire a side to greater deeds. Or indeed adapt and change himself the formation or personnel at his disposal to turn things around, when some made bold claims about his capacity to be able to do just that.

On the contrary, the most consistent things about Silva's Everton tenure are his failures. 22 times now in PL games Everton has conceded the first goal...and we have yet to turn a single one into a victory. 23 times now we have conceded a goal from dead ball situations - an unwanted league high record. That stretches to 45 times if you include his half seasons at Hull and Watford.

Those numbers clearly indicate a systemic failing which is simply not being addressed on the training ground, where again we were reassured by some is where he does his best work.

And in how many games from a losing position have we seen the schoolyard tactic of throwing on as many forwards as possible, sacrificing midfielders and defenders in doing so and thus completely losing shape and effectiveness? And not ONCE has it worked.

Silva is nowhere close this season to showing his 'feast team'. The high press, the cutting off of passing lines for the opposition, penning them in their own half, the rapid movement and interchanges, the solid backline...all are absent.

Whereas in the closing games of last season there were highly effective partnerships developing across the pitch, now, each unit - defence, midfield, attack - each player, even! - seemingly works in isolation with too much space between all lines for the opposition to play through.

Gana Gueye is a huge miss from last season. The seek and destroy heat missle that he was constantly broke up opposition play which enabled us to play the game more in the opposition's half, rather than around our own penalty area.

Early last season when Gomes and Bernard were added to the side to join the likes of Dein, Richarlison and Sigurdsson, things clicked. Gana was the one winning the ball, getting it to those more skilful players and the opposition was struggling.

But then, after the Anfield defeat in which Gomes excelled, teams started putting 2-3 men on him and a key component of our creative force was negated. But still we had Siggy, Richarlison and Bernard getting on the ball thanks to Gana and they all shone when we picked up form again.

Now Sigurdsson is getting some heat this season and he certainly isn't influencing games as he did last season. But then, is it any surprise at the moment? Whereas last season we had the insurance of Gana, now we don't. Gomes is out injured. Bernard is not being selected. Schneiderlin is doing 'OK' in there (anathema to some, I know, but he is in comparison to other players). The one creative force is Sigurdsson. The opposition knows this and simply crowd him out of the game.

As a result, we have very few genuinely threatening moments these days. Take arguably our best chance against Burnley. It involved four (to varying degrees) much-maligned players:

Schneiderlin played an excellent ball inside the full-back to Coleman. Seamus created an excellent position, made an excellent cut back for the late-arriving Sigurdsson who stretched to get the ball to Iwobi, whose attempt was charged down.

The players we have DO have the ability. The formation, the tactics they are being asked to play, is not helping them fully realise those abilities.

I've read the suggestion in recent days that relegation could be a blessing for us, a chance to reset. No, it wouldn't. It would be an unmitigated disaster!

Falling out of the cash cow that is the Premier League you are just as likely to do a Leeds, Bolton or Sunderland and plummet down the leagues - have your very existence under threat - as you are to bounce right back, regenerated. Have you seen just how competitive the Championship promotion places are in recent seasons?

I am not entertaining for one moment that we will be relegated this season. But if Silva continues to underperform and Moshiri's grandiose plans for a new stadium are threatened as a result, the manager then forces the board to take a decision on him.

He is rapidly losing the fan base. The clock is ticking. Either he starts winning games, or he will be gone.

It's that simple.

John McFarlane Snr
153 Posted 08/10/2019 at 21:48:04
Hi all, I have struggled through 147 posts, and like John Boon [109] and [130], I consider Everton a big club because of their history, I also view Aston Villa, and Wolverhampton Wanderers, as big clubs. All three clubs were part of the original 12 members of the Football League in 1888, and are still competing in the top flight 131 years later, I appreciate that we cannot bathe in past triumphs but let's take some satisfaction from our achievements.

With regards to the current situation, it's apparent that we all know the problems we face, and it seems that quite a few consider they have the solution, but unfortunately [in my opinion] the names of the potential successors to Marco Silva, should he be dismissed, are many and varied.

To add to the uncertainty, some of the people named may not wish to accept the invitation to join Everton, and of those who would relish the challenge the eventual choice may not be any more successful than Marco Silva. Because a manager has tasted glory with one club, there is no guarantee that he will do so with another, it's all in the 'Lap of the Gods'.

I see that the majority of poster's wish for Marco Silva to be dismissed, but judging by the number of proposed replacements, the Board of Directors are going to have their work cut out. I'm 100% certain that no matter who they choose there will be dissenter's, sadly that's the way some football supporters operate. I won't be losing any sleep over something I can't control.

Filipe Torres
154 Posted 08/10/2019 at 22:15:14
It ain't rocket science, Marco! Drop the magic trio of Keane, Schneiderlin and Sigurdsson, as they are the most numb, slow, no football brain, and worst trio I have seen, and they are 30% of our starting 11.

Add a central defender in there, to cover for your attacking full-backs, I believe that Gbamin (when fit), Holgate and Mina should do fine, you could even use your zonal marking more effectively.

Add another striker to fit the purpose of crossing the ball, like you seem to prefer. Do this and you should at least see the "moments" disappear.

Paul Corbishley
155 Posted 08/10/2019 at 22:20:04
For me he is a dead man walking, it looks like he might get the next game but it won’t change.

Like Steve alluded to earlier on the start of the good run at the end of last season started against that lot.

I honestly think Silva got lucky that day due to a massive massive atmosphere in the ground, we were literally jumping for 90 mins in the stands. There was no way the players couldn’t react to it.

That then led on to a good feeling that the atmosphere was back and it was a cracking end to the season, it really felt like we could do it together, team and crowd, come back next season and let’s really push forward.
The past few weeks feels like the bond has been broken, it feels like we gave them everything, tried to get right behind them and lift them but ultimately over the long term there not that arsed.

I always say it’s the easiest job in the league playing for Everton, never really going down, out of the cups early and no european football during the week. All they have to do is play premier league games and get to stay at home all week.

Don’t underestimate how much of a commitment it is for them to play european football and cup games especially if a player has a family.

There has to be a change in mentality, for me that’s the biggest issue, I know who I’d have as a manager it’s Brendan Rodgers unfortunately I think he would rather stay at Leicester.

Dick Fearon
156 Posted 08/10/2019 at 22:43:31
While we are Silva bashing little has been said about the paucity of his lack of back up resource of the U21s and U23s.

For many years we hear that this or that youngster has great potential then, when in there 20s, they fade away having little or no first-team experience.

It was the same in the late 50s early 60s when our Reserves were thrashing everything in sight only for most of them to disappear also without leaving their mark in the first team.

I watched Newcastle's 19-year-old Longstaff boss the midfield against Man Utd and vociferously demanding the pass that led to his superb goal.

I wondered why, with all our Finch Farm facilities and great academy setup, it has not produced a similar kind of youngster?

Kevin Prytherch
157 Posted 08/10/2019 at 22:58:48
Dick @156,

Marco Silva has not given a debut to ANY young player since he came to the club. Maybe that's one of the reasons.

Kieran Kinsella
158 Posted 08/10/2019 at 23:05:10

You can also argue that Kenny and Hornby have improved since they left Finch Farm while the same cant be said for those left behind.

Paul Corbishley
159 Posted 08/10/2019 at 23:17:49
Dick, how can you even begin to look at the U23/21 teams as being the problem when the 1st team has spent so much money on players.

Granted Sean Longstaff looks like a good player and his brother Matty making his debut looks like a good player as well but time will tell.

Finch Farm has produced these players. One thing everyone wants all the time is a Rooney or a Slippy every year but the reality is they don't come along, they are once-in-a-lifetime players. Tom Davies, Jonjoe Kenny, SeamusColeman was with the youth teams... Ross Barkley.

There will be lads playing in these teams now who don't have a hope in hell of making it at this level but they are the teammates of the few who might.

How many of the U23s are ready, I'd argue if there still at that level and are in their 20s then they never will be.

Peter Gorman
160 Posted 08/10/2019 at 23:52:46
Dick, taking a swipe at the kids is pure ignorance. Silva is failing the youth, not the other way round.

How many of the U23s/U21s are ready to play in a team in the bottom 3? all of them.

How many first teamers are ready to play anything like winning football? a handful at most.

If you don't play the kids, they don't develop. If you persist with a bunch of perennial losers who haven't a bollock between them, you get relegation form.

You can wax lyrical about Longstaff all you want, he is the flavour of the month, as Jack Colbeck was before him. Over in our world, I've seen both Tom Davies and Beni Baningime boss games on their debuts (aged, what, 17? 18?) so if you want to know why FF isn't producing a 'similar kind of youngster' to Longstaff (whoever the fuck he is) then look no further than the man in the dugout.

Steve Ferns
161 Posted 09/10/2019 at 00:20:28
Good post John, if Wolves are a big club though, then there's more big clubs than there are places in the Premier League, you have to include Leeds, Sheff Weds, and Sunderland.

For me, there can only be 3 or 4 truly big clubs are any one time and that can change from year to year.

Right now, Chelsea are a big club, but yet I still think of them as a second-tier side that had only won one trophy. It's hard to lose your primary view of a club formed when growing up.

Steve Ferns
162 Posted 09/10/2019 at 00:39:41
With regards to the U23s, who do you think should be given a game, and what more should Silva be doing?

The key group is the U18s. Our u18s have been second rate for a little while now. We get beaten to the title. The teams that beat us then promote their best players or loan them out and we retain ours and then win the U23s.

Last year, the U18s were actually good. We have two players of interest, Simms and Adedoyin (on loan in the SPL but not playing). The year before was Anthony Gordon's class and only he was of note in a disappointing year. Gordon got promoted to the u23s mid season, and actually played in the Cyprus game. I would say that Gordon is the only player over 18 on our books, who has a realistic chance of coming through right now.

Others are similar to Antony Evans. He's a very skilful player. Good feet, good technique, and can curl one in from distance. He was good at 18, he stepped up to U23 and did well there but he's been on loan and time is against him now. He's just turned 21. He is clearly not good enough for our first team now. He needs a loan.

Unsworth said he tried to get him a loan, but amazingly they couldn't find the right club at the right level and he says he hopes to get him out in January. But yet, he and Gordon were the best players on the pitch against Burton.

Josh Bowler turns 21 in March, he was very good for the U23s last season and is now struggling to get a game for a midtable Hull. His chance is therefore slipping away.

Silva though, has promoted 4 youth players to the first-team squad and had another training with them at times. Of these 4, I can only see 3: Anthony Gordon, Lewis Gibson and Denis Adeniren. Gibson looks a classy player but despite that, Silva has little choice but to call up him or Feeney and I suspect Feeney is probably the 4th or if not he's certainly the 5th player. We need 4 centre-backs to train properly, 5 if someone has a knock. Adeniran is a surprise as I haven't been that impressed by him, but Silva sees something there and Unsworth says the 20-year-old is a first-team player now. What Silva has done though, is allow these 3 (and presumably whoever the 4th is) to keep playing for the U23s so they get games, but yet train with the first team. Silva is watching Gordon then, everyday.

Koeman didn't have Tom Davies or Beni Baningime train with the first team. Instead he ordered the youth sides away from the first team and built a dividing wall to keep them away. Undoing what Martinez had done about bringing the club together. Tom Davies only came in when the clamour was too great to resist.

I think it's different with Gordon, and that Silva is clearly looking hard, but has resisted the temptation. Personally, I think the lad has so much pace, so many tricks, and so much confidence that he could come in and do something magical. I don't see what we have to lose.

I would be surprised, if Silva keeps his job, if Gordon has not got on the pitch before Christmas if he keeps up his good form. But let's not forget, Silva has seen Gordon taking on Coleman, Digne, Sidibe and Baines in training. Perhaps, he is not showing enough against them for Silva to throw him in. I mean, if he was ripping them, why wouldn't he throw him in?

Rob Marsh
163 Posted 09/10/2019 at 00:40:36
Kieran # 147

From Moyes and his "knife to a gunfight" we sunk to a "feather duster to a baseball bat fight" with Silva.

Anyway Moyes finally got his hands on Dirty Harry's 357 Magnum at Man Utd, it's a pity he didn't know how to shoot!

Kieran Kinsella
164 Posted 09/10/2019 at 00:48:29
I think John McFarlane is a bit of a romantic, which is terrific.

Whatever these nouveau riche Chelsea's do you're not a proper club unless you can wheel out some old black and white Pathé news clips from the movies showing lads between the war, doused in Brylcreme kicking a pig's bladder.

I've a soft spot myself for Preston North End, Burnley, Wolves etc. It is part of what makes football great — all the history.

Steve Ferns
165 Posted 09/10/2019 at 00:54:15
Kieran, I always look out for all the Old Lancashire clubs. I hate the fact that the power in football is drifting away from the North-West and down to London. We might keep winning the titles, but our representation outside of Liverpool and Manchester is clearly suffering with Blackburn and Bolton tumbling down the leagues.

I'd love to see Preston come back, and I miss our annual pre-season game at Deepdale. I'll never forget my first glimpse of Gravesen as the "mad dog" defensive midfielder dinked one over their keeper.

Just checked and the keeper was Andy Lonergan, now of Liverpool FC, 35 and still going. Actually no, he was sub!

Kieran Kinsella
166 Posted 09/10/2019 at 01:34:28
Crikey, Steve… seems like a lifetime ago Gravesen was here. Too bad Lonergan is slumming it with that lot.
Si Cooper
167 Posted 09/10/2019 at 02:31:36
I think Silva will get a bit of extra time due to the fact that the summer transfer activity obviously fell well short of what must have been hoped for. That said, ultimately he has to get more from what he does have available to use.

I don't think the Villa game was at all one we deserved to get beaten in but since then it has seemed that the players are stifled by the thought of going behind.

Zonal marking didn't automatically lead to the Burnley goal. That was Schneiderlin allowing himself to be physically bullied twice without a peep, and Michael Keane identifying the threat but not taking the option of dealing with it directly himself.

I can't identify a surefire replacement as I don't think anyone actually comes with any sort of guarantee. I reckon the board will likely feel the same, so Silva will have a bit more time and if he can get a couple of wins in the next couple of games probably until Christmas would be my bet.

Michael Williams
168 Posted 09/10/2019 at 02:57:56
Please no Eddie Howe. His team has conceded 13 goals. Just as many as as us. He has had several years to build a defense and he has not come close.
Alexander Murphy
169 Posted 09/10/2019 at 03:59:34
"Barnsley have parted company with head coach Daniel Stendel following a run of 10 Championship games without a win."

"AC Milan have sacked manager Marco Giampaolo. because of a poor start to the season. Milan are 13th in Serie A, three points above the relegation zone, after three wins in their first seven games."

"A fourth consecutive defeat - the club's worst run since January 2015. it will be of little relief to the Portuguese that the one-goal defeat stopped him becoming the first Toffees boss since 1958 to lead his team to four straight losses by two or more goals."

Letting Marco go would not be a knee jerk response. It would not be harsh upon the manager. It would be fair to the fans.

Darren Hind
171 Posted 09/10/2019 at 04:59:25
I deliberately gave this article a wide berth until I had the time to sit and read it properly.

I've read enough of your work to know you are a naturally positive kinda guy Lyndon. Too smart to ever be deemed a happy clapper, but even in the darkest periods, you have always tried to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

In a week where Rob Hal reported back that the the travelling fans had turned on the manager. It's quite upsetting to read a piece from you which in parts, you appear to express a measure of despair.

Tough times for blues, very tough. Unfortunately our only option is to go all Scarlett O'hara

I look forward to the day when we have a team your talent so richly deserves. It will give me greatest of pleasure to log onto TW and read a piece from Lyndon Lloyd listing all the reasons why Everton are so damned good.

Graham Lloyd
172 Posted 09/10/2019 at 05:03:47
I think it's unlikely but I hope Silva turns it around. I really do. As others have mentioned there is a lot more wrong at the club than just the manager IMO. Changing the manager means new approaches, preferences to players etc and I think we would remain forever "in transition". Give him time to fix this mess and reevaluate in December.

The alternatives are limited from what I can see and don't inspire me much. I very much doubt we will end up in trouble this season and we will stablise like last year. IF (and it's a doubtful if) he manages that he will be 2 years into the 3 year deal and any excuses of what he and Brands inherited will be irrelevant.

That said, the coaching team must address the alarming set play defence issues like last season or we are well and truly buggered!

Optimistically, going for an early goal against West Ham which will raise the players and crowds confidence. Hammers will score from a set piece but not before we score a couple more. 3-1 win with Kean getting the last!


Lev Vellene
173 Posted 09/10/2019 at 06:58:39
We already have the solution at the club. If Silva plays the same formation, with the same players, and we lose, we'll stretch him out on the physio's bench and David Unsworth will sit on him for 5 minutes. 10 minutes the next time, then 15 etc. Silva will soon think of new tactics, and remember he's got youngsters to try out!

Aah, it's a nice dream...

Jonathan Tasker
174 Posted 09/10/2019 at 08:05:10
Typical Kenwright behaviour to only allow signings five minutes before the transfer deadline to presumably save money.

Brands had a whole year to replace Kurt Zouma yet still failed.

Brands and Silva both need firing.

Paul Richardson
175 Posted 09/10/2019 at 08:13:30
Could a possible scenario, having read this fascinating thread, be to let Silva continue to coach, but bring in a manager above him? Like many, I'm weary of the sulky, monosyllamic approach at press conferences, the non-engagement with the fans, the ready-made excuses of injuries or travel fatigue, the hopeless/help me facial expressions...and why isn't his English spot on after four years in this country?
The whole place needs a galvinising, positive influence. From outside.
John Raftery
176 Posted 09/10/2019 at 10:34:12
Paul (175),

I never listen to his press conferences because I can't understand what he is saying. His grasp of the language seems no better than when he arrived at Hull but he could not have failed to understand the two-fingered messages from the fans behind the goal at Burnley.

There are some good players at the club, including players in their early twenties with the potential to improve. To that extent, the squad is in a better state than it was two or three years ago. While we had him, Lukaku masked a whole load of deficiencies elsewhere in the team and realistically we were never going to find a like-for-like replacement. Hopes that we may sign a striker to solve our problems in January are likely to be forlorn.

Given the way our midfield operates any striker will struggle in the formation to which Silva has stubbornly adhered over the past fifteen months. Unless or until he alters the formation and sorts out the defending at set-pieces we are unlikely to pick up enough points to climb the table.

Rolling the managerial recruitment dice in mid-season is fraught with risk. Can we have any confidence the hierarchy will get it right?

Would a proven hard-bitten manager capable of delivering enough results to steer us out of trouble, but without necessarily using a style of play in line with fans' aspirations, be able to get the fans onside?

Would a manager from abroad be able to get to grips with the demands of the Premier League?

Would an in-house caretaker be able to get the players onside?

I guess all those questions are going through the minds of Brands and Moshiri at the moment. Given the lack of obvious answers, they must be hoping Silva has enough about him to turn things around and quickly.

Stephen Davies
177 Posted 09/10/2019 at 10:45:08
Sam #115.
I was going to post something similar.
Manager of the year in Germany.
John McFarlane Snr
178 Posted 09/10/2019 at 12:32:41
Hi Steve [161] I only nominated the three clubs, Everton, Aston Villa, and Wolverhampton Wanderers, because they are the only clubs of the 12 founder members of the Football League operating in the top flight at the moment.

Yes, as you rightly point out, Leeds United, Sheffield Wednesday, and Sunderland, could be added to the list, may say? along with West Bromwich Albion, Sheffield United and one two others, for their successes over the years. It always causes me to smile wryly, when visiting teams are greeted with the chant of "You've got no history." Every club in the various Leagues has history, some longer and more illustrious than others, big clubs can be measured in various ways, it's not always about money [in my opinion] and I can handle the cat-calls my views may arouse.

Hi Kieran [164] forgive me if I sound a bit conceited, if I view your description of me, as being a 'bit of a romantic' a compliment. You did use the word 'terrific' so I feel sure I'm on safe ground. I'm not sure that my 79 years old 'Young Lady' would agree with your assessment. I know it's an old chestnut that there's 'no future in nostalgia', but for me it eases the anxiety of the present.

John McFarlane Snr
179 Posted 09/10/2019 at 12:49:52
Hi Steve and Kieran, the trauma of the weekend caused the omission of Burnley, another of the 'original 12' members.
Mike Allen
180 Posted 09/10/2019 at 16:09:58
John178/179<,p>Chaps of our age may well remember many of the clubs who once graced the old Football League now down in non- league football. I bet many of their old-timers thought it could or would never happen to them. I was there as a boy when we got relegated and I truly believe many of today's squad would not have got in that team.
Barry Rathbone
181 Posted 09/10/2019 at 17:34:34
It's the same problem we've had since big joe's departure we only ever have one, maybe 2, decent players amidst a squad of bog ordinary failures from other clubs yet wonder why we're consistently crap.

Upper echelon clubs buy continuously adding potential, quality and competition no one rests on their laurels and sentimentality doesn't figure.

Moshiri is going the same way as pretenders Lerner, Hicks and Gilette and countless others. You could appoint Jesus Christ as manager and he wouldn't have a miracle big enough to win something here

Joe McMahon
182 Posted 09/10/2019 at 17:51:01
Barry, there was also Nigel Martyn and Gary Speed, but of course as we all know Gary was sold.
Peter Thistle
183 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:05:57
We need a clear out but it's not possible at the moment. Before the players, I'd start by getting rid of every single one of our coaches and hiring in some international experienced ones. That's where the week starts, train yer arse off while doing what you are told by an experienced coach.

Silva, the manager, he simply has to go. I've never seen so many examples of inept decision-making in my life. I honestly think he's got up the leagues just by looking cool and being foreign.

If only Guardiola (who lives just down the road) could give him some tips and tell him how to change games when it ain't goin' for ya, we might have a chance. Pity he's not mates with Mourinho, another who could train him up on a job he should already know how to do. He cannot carry on dragging us down any longer. Do one, Silva!

Kieran Kinsella
184 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:13:16
Barry 181

One problem that Jesus Christ would have is that he'd pick 12 men and it's only 11 a side. Worse still, one of the 12 would be Judas. Confidence would be low with doubting Thomas in the team also.

Dermot Byrne
185 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:30:31
Kieran 184: Doubting Tom was a fantastic winger whose Dad had supported the Blues all through his life.

The issue was ADHD and that anxiety led him to be misdiagnosed as "doubting" and as a result he ended up playing for Leighton Orient until his premature retirement and sad ever presence at the red wine counter in Threshers

Kieran Kinsella
186 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:41:01
Lol Dermot,

The ADHD probably wasn't helped by the teamtalks.
"So what's the game plan boss?"
"A man sent his servant out so sow mustard seeds."
"OK, so long ball?"

Kevin Latham
187 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:42:29
Dermot (185), if memory serves Doubting Thomas had a full back brother called Tony, who Jesus tried to make into a player but decided that raising Lazarus was easier. And while we’re mentioning famous names, it’s great to see Barry Rathbone (181) contributing, my info is that he’s investigating his latest Sherlock Holmes case - ‘The Sign of Four Defenders Gone Missing from Set Pieces’ (sorry Barry, no offence meant!)
Kieran Kinsella
188 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:52:19

Didn't Lazarus play for QPR back in the day?

Dermot Byrne
189 Posted 09/10/2019 at 19:57:46
What annoys me is Matthew. Spent ages writing that Blue column for the Echo and then jumped at that PL job. That financial fair play rule he brought in that "taxed' clubs outside the top 6 so annoys me.

And to think all he had beforehand was that shite pub in the Dingle.

Kevin Latham
190 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:03:37
Certainly did Kieran - you’ll recall Moses played for West Brom and Jesus himself turns out for City, when picked over Aguero. You’d think he’d be first choice. Now then, would Siggy be the Holy Ghost? We know he’s there but he’s invisible to the human eye this season
Mike Gaynes
191 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:14:07
Kieran #184, the club would also have conditioning issues. These days, loaves and fishes would not be considered a proper training table.
Kieran Kinsella
192 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:19:58
In a similar vein, I was surprised to see Abraham called up by Southgate and picking the Three Lions over Israel.
Kevin Latham
193 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:27:08
Kieran (192) lol!

And Mike (191), my understanding is that, when Jesus was faced with feeding 5,000 with 5 loaves and 2 fishes, he reckoned it was beyond even him.

So Peter asked "Lord, if you don't fancy that, could you make Everton a top 4 side?"

Jesus said "Er... let's have another look at those loaves and fishes."

Kieran Kinsella
194 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:28:03
Hahaha, Kevin!!!
Kieran Kinsella
195 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:28:31
Mike Gaynes,

That diet sounds very Moyesian!

Dermot Byrne
196 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:41:41
Kevin 193 v funny mate.

On the positive side, after a few days the rock was rolled back and that was the start of the new stadium building work.

Jump forward and St Paul, son of a legendary right-back, was able to sell the dream across the world and finally the red & white were excommunicated for satanic rituals!

So... jolly days ahead.

Peter Gorman
197 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:57:09
All this Bible-banter makes a change from the weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Kevin Latham
198 Posted 09/10/2019 at 20:58:04
Dermot, are you sure they got planning permission to roll the stone back?
Kieran Kinsella
199 Posted 09/10/2019 at 21:02:14
The stone rolling planning permission went on for years with Pontious Pilate holding public consultations. It was back when Martinez was here and he said "No matter how much money you offer Stones ain't moving."
Kevin Latham
200 Posted 09/10/2019 at 21:28:00
Kieran, would that be the same Boys Pen Pontious Pilate who said of Martinez the Lesser after his team smote the Chelseans: "What a manger!" Ha! See what I did there to keep the Biblical connection.

On reflection, looking at the nonsense I'm coming out with, maybe I took too much Communion wine when I was an altar boy all those years ago.

Mike Gaynes
201 Posted 09/10/2019 at 21:51:10
Time for me to Exodus this thread.
Brent Stephens
202 Posted 09/10/2019 at 21:55:31
Too much of this is OT.
Dermot Byrne
203 Posted 09/10/2019 at 22:18:19
Peter #197 — exactly.
Ajay Gopal
204 Posted 10/10/2019 at 10:53:26
Lyndon, thank you for a hugely insightful article on the present situation at EFC. We should, however, remember that we are only 8 games into the season – there are 30 more games, 90 points to play for.

Yes, we have squandered away a lot of winnable points with poor performances by the players and some terrible tactics by Marco. But, I do believe that we have the talent in this squad to turn things around, certainly not to be in the Champions League, but at least to compete for the Top 6 spots. Amazingly, we are still only 7 points away from the Top 6 in spite of being in the relegation zone.

One of the top managers in the Premier League (don't remember who) said that he looked at the table only after about 12 games in the season. IF (and this is a big 'IF') Marco works hard during this 2-week break, analysing honestly the footage of the games played so far with his management team and with some of the senior players who have stayed behind (Baines, Delph, Coleman, etc), he might identify the key flaws in the set-up, personnel, and hopefully then come up with a plan to stem the tide and start addressing the issues.

My amateurish analysis and suggestions:

1. Restore the Digne - Bernard partnership on the left, they are a handful for any defence in the Premier League.

2. Drop Sigurdsson for a few games to help him recover and observe how Everton play from the stands. I believe he is an intelligent footballer – he may turn around to Silva and say "Look, I think I can play this (xxx) role, give me a chance."

3. Perfect opportunity to transition away from Seamus Coleman, brilliant Evertonian though he has been, by telling Sidibe: "Lad, this is your big chance to play long-term as the Everton right-back. Show me what you got in the next 2 games."
4. Play 4-3-3, add an extra midfielder to bring in greater energy in defence and attack. Ideally, I would play Delph, Gomes and Gbamin, but I would love to see Davies getting a run of games from now on until Gbamin is fit.

5. The forward 3 should be told to play "One for all, all for one" – fluid movement, create opportunities for one another, be courageous to have a shot at goal. Ideally, Silva should tell them: "I don't want to see any of you 3 come off a game with less than at least 3 genuine shots on goal and creating at least 3 goal-scoring chances for your teammates'" Initially, I won't be disappointed if we don't score any goals, maybe lose a couple more, if it helps us start creating more chances and makes the opposition get worried about us.

6. Practice set-piece routines to be more productive in terms of actual goals scored. We are 6th highest in the league in terms of corners won, but I think we have converted zero.

7. Ditch zonal marking and move on to more old-school type defending of set-pieces. Tell the defenders to attack the ball, as though they are trying to score into an imaginary goal-post about 15 yards in front of our goal.

8. Bring in Moise Kean gradually. Iwobi, Walcott, Gordon and Tosun are good weapons to have on the bench if Silva can use them in a planned way, unlike how he introduces them in now, in a state of total panic!

9. I would rest Keane and Schneiderlin along with Sigurdsson. I would play Holgate to partner with Mina – I have a feeling they will compliment each other better than Keane & Mina. But I fear this may be too risky a change for Silva.

My team for the next game and one which Silva might actually consider:

Bernard Iwobi Richarlison
Delph Gomes Davies
Digne Mina Keane Sidibe

Subs: Lössl, Holgate, Sigurdsson, Kean, Calvert-Lewin, Gordon, Walcott

It is far too early to give up on Silva. I would give him at least 4 more games to turn things around. For our sake, I hope he succeeds.

Jerome Shields
205 Posted 10/10/2019 at 12:48:48
Steve #162,

You are probably right in what you say, but both Brands and Moshiri will want progress and gave Silva a 3-year contract to get them there.

But Brands and Moshiri are not fully in control of the Club, either at Board level or behind the scenes. Therefore, the plan does not have everyone in the Club onboard. Any new plan won't either. It is also noticeable that Brands has a tight remit regarding his role at Finch Farm.

The same o!d parental attitude and lack of planning still exists at Everton and it is paralyzing any other plans.

Tim Howard has just been appointed an Everton Ambassador. Do you think that was a Brands or Moshiri decision?

Graeme Beresford
210 Posted 10/10/2019 at 16:39:29
I like that Everton have always been more of a family club but we now have:

Duncan Ferguson
John Ebbrell
Francis Jeffers
David Unsworth

All on the coaching staff, and we are now having Cahill and Tim Howard. Sometimes I wonder are we far too sentimental? How many other clubs have this similar set-up?

I get it if the guys are showing qualities but something isn't working is it.

Alan J Thompson
211 Posted 10/10/2019 at 16:58:39
Graham(#210); Wasn't the line of succession over the park known as the "Boot Room"?
Steve Ferns
212 Posted 10/10/2019 at 17:15:18
Graeme, where do we get our coaches from? What is wrong with appointing ex-Everton players? 99% of coaches are ex-pros. Very few come up like the Crowley brothers from outside the professional game.

Francis Jeffers has been there a while now, and has a very limited role. He came in and he worked for FREE for a year. He wanted something to do, he wanted to get into coaching and stay in football.

If you're a professional player for this long, is that hard to learn the basics of coaching? Particularly, the role of Jeffers or even Ebbrell. These guys are underneath Unsworth and work to his instruction. Unsworth asks them to warm the players up, or run X drill, Y drill, or Drill 34b or whatever. They are doing a set plan drawn up by someone else and usually supervised. This ain't rocket science. Why can't this be done by one of our ex-pros? Why can't we have a bit of sentiment and give these guys some work and also be there to mentor the kids. If Duncan Ferguson tells you how to head the ball, you pay more attention than Joe Bloggs who played for Huyton Boys and worked as a PE teacher at a local secondary school until recently, but he's supposed to know his onions.

As part of doing their badges, our coaches have to devise their own training plans. Read this on Unsworth: telegraph article This is in 2013, long time ago now.

FA Level 5 Coaching Course

These coaching courses aren't easy either. There's a lot to them, and they include assessments. To get to coach our players, our coaches need the level 4 and they need to be competent.

I'd love to hear Brands has brought in the new Steve McLaren, Rene Mulensteen or any of these other (formerly) renowned coaches. Silva and Unsworth go on refresher courses, they may even give a session or two, Bielsa does. They will rub shoulders with other top coaches, and you would expect them to be impressed by a few guys and look to recruit them. Other than that, why not develop our own coaches and see who is good and who is not. The coaches are not paid as much as the players. It doesn't cost us much to keep these guys around. One of them might just be the next Colin Harvey, but even if he was, some would want him gone as it's far too sentimental.

And sorry Graeme, I mean no disrespect to you at all. Many keep making these points and I think it's a complete non-starter.

Dave Abrahams
213 Posted 10/10/2019 at 17:31:34
Steve (212),I think Colin Harvey was a very good coach, did he get all these coaching certificates ?
Steve Ferns
214 Posted 10/10/2019 at 17:33:47
No Dave, and I think he was an excellent coach. No one said his appointment was out of sentimentality did they?
Dave Abrahams
215 Posted 10/10/2019 at 17:47:52
Steve (214), No they didn’t say it was a sentimental appointment, and he didn’t need those coaching badges which was my point.

I think Harvey was one of Howard’s best appointments, the day after the leaflets where given out at Goodison demanding Howard be sacked.

Steve Ferns
216 Posted 10/10/2019 at 17:58:07
Dave I see no reason why our ex-players are incompetent, do you?
Dave Abrahams
217 Posted 10/10/2019 at 18:09:20
Steve (216), It depends on how good they are, Colin Harvey proved his worth at Bellefield before he became first team coach and more than proved it after he was appointed.

I honestly don’t know if the present coaches at different levels are good or bad, don’t know what they do or how they are regarded at Finch Farm, would any of them be appointed at other clubs if they were moved on?

I think coaches should be appointed on reputation whether they played for Everton or not.

Steve Ferns
218 Posted 10/10/2019 at 18:18:38
Dave, I believe the likes of Jeffers have worked their way up on merit.
Dermot Byrne
219 Posted 10/10/2019 at 19:18:05
I think so much of it is luck. RS paid a lot for various managers and got Klopp. We had Kendall but I cannot recall much hope when he began first time. Klopp a loud motivator on touchline, Kendall not and Fergie at Man It's not either.

What happens on training pitches nonr of us know so we pick our positions, apportion blame and often either change our minds or brag as " told ya so" because we had been miserable as fuck for the last decade.

So we express our guesses but do we really know much?

Nah. We are the fans of a club, just like 99% of clubs, who don't have the international love, the CEOs of Eufa/FIFA or PL, or the media on our side.

What we do have, I believe, is the chance of a stadium that is best story in Europe and, as I have said often, a strategy to produce the best team then.

This may seem insane mix of pessimism and optimism but I reckon if there is any threat to this strategy, Silva will go.

Dave Abrahams
220 Posted 10/10/2019 at 19:32:19
Steve (218):As I said before I don’t know if Franny is good bad or indifferent, you say he came in and worked for twelve months before he got on the wage sheet, fair do’s for that, and given that football is all he knows I wish him well in the future.

Franny came in as a very young player, had massive potential, great movement, good eye for goal and when he went to Arsenal looked like he was set for a long run at the top.

Don’t know what happened then, a bad run of injuries, too much too soon? but he went down faster than he came up, went to quite a few clubs including a spellback with us but never regained his form again.

I never met Franny don’t know what sort of character he is but hope he makes a good living out of coaching, with us all the better, as long as he is good enough.

Steve Ferns
221 Posted 10/10/2019 at 19:38:43
Dermot, Klopp can do no wrong. But do you remember his final season? They were in the relegation fight until February of 2015. They had some bad luck, and more bad luck, and things got worse and worse. They actually won 2 of the first 3. Then lost 6 of the next 7, including 5 in a row. They picked up slightly, still struggling winning 2 but losing another 4. After 19 games they had won 4 and lost 10. They won 9 of the final 15 and pulled up to 7th. But the damage was done and Klopp left, recharged his batteries and went to the RS. They had been 2nd the year before and won the German cup, it was the year before that (2013) where they lost the CL final to Bayern, and the year before that (2012) that Klopp last won the league.

Not saying Silva is as good as Klopp or that he will recover for sure, just things can go wrong for the best of them.

Steve Ferns
222 Posted 10/10/2019 at 19:46:24
Dave, my opinion of Jeffers was that he did his knee before the Arsenal move and that this injury finished him. I don't think he was ever the same player again, and that he effectively peaked at the age of 20 due to that injury.

There is a contradiction to that though. If the injury really was that bad, and that we sold him as a dud to Arsenal, then why would we, of all clubs, take him back on loan in 2003, when he was still only 22?

To my eyes, he blew his knee and never looked the same player again.

Question for you Dave, Joe Royle, a bona fide legend of this parish, says he signed for Everton at 14 as a wing-half, how a centre forward was this converted midfielder?

Dave Abrahams
223 Posted 10/10/2019 at 20:01:46
Steve (222), strange that you should ask me about Joe being a wing half, I always think of Joe as a striker, but there was one reserve game, a mid week night match, when he played left half against Bury or Derby County, going by the colours, that was the only time I recall him playing in that position.

I always thought he played wing half that night because Catterick wanted Joe to get more involved in the game by playing there, get a bit more devil into his game but I’m only guessing.

I’ve an idea that Joe might have played for Liverpool Boys, don’t know what position, but his headmaster at Ranworth, his school in Norris Green, said later he would never let any boy at the school play for Liverpool Boys again, because Joe was a good scholar but his mind went elsewhere when he became involved with football.

Dermot Byrne
224 Posted 10/10/2019 at 20:08:57
Steve 321# my point exactly.



And if Silva cannot do it, he is just a bit player in the bigger picture of the stadium I regularly & boringly refer to. There is a longer strategy in my view.

To a fan who wants a win now, a pain.

Including me.

Gavin Johnson
225 Posted 10/10/2019 at 20:59:27
in a scenario Silva leaves, there are three routes we could take with his replacement appointment. There's my own choice, in that we find another upcoming manager which is the model I believe Brands will favour. With that, Nagelsmann would be my ideal replacement, and while I don't know my much about Ten Hag other than his european record I think he could fit well with his compatriot, Brands.

IMO these two would be the very best coaches we could try and snare into accepting the job.

Route 2. We go for a manager who has achieved the most. So that means looking at someone like Benitez or Mourinho.
There's a time when I would never accept the FSW, or Fat Spanish Waiter under any circumstances, but I'm now at the point where I'd give the guy a chance if we started competing at the top. Mourinho's record speaks for itself, but him and his project would cost a fortune. I should imagine Moshiri is getting sick of throwing money at us.

Route 3. We appoint Unsworth or Moyes on short term contracts and take the time to find the right guy for the job. I don't see either as the long term answer, but I'd consider either if it was made clear that it was only an interim appointment. If they over achieved the position could be reviewed at the end of the season. Out of the two, I'd favour Unsworth because Moyes may try and get a contract longer than 6 months, similar to Big Sam. Plus, Unsworth would be more flexible, and wouldn't have an issue standing down if we found his. successor before the end of the season.

The good thing with Unsworth is that he could buy us time so we do get it right this time. That said, I hope we could snare Nagelsmann or Erik Ten Hag before the end of this season.

Steve Ferns
226 Posted 10/10/2019 at 21:35:20
Dave, he said he was a wing-half at 14 when he signed. I think he was 16 when he made his debut. So. It much time to convert.

Thanks for your reply. Hopefully we can meet for a beer or two sometime soon.

Dave Abrahams
227 Posted 10/10/2019 at 21:46:32
Steve (226), You’re welcome Steve, always enjoy your posts, yes see you at the next meeting, if not before.
Brian Porter
228 Posted 10/10/2019 at 23:50:24
I honestly don't know why Silva's still here. It seems our board, or Farhad Moshiri, or both, just refuse to learn the lessons of history.

Going back to Roberto Martinez, the fans were calling for his dismissal for weeks and weeks before action was taken. Who knows, if they had taken action sooner, we might have finished the season on a high, maybe even claimed a place in Europe, but no... they dithered.

Fast-forward to the Ronald Koeman reign. Again, the fans seemed to be able to identify his failings and unsuitability for the role as Everton manager long before Farhad and the board, who once again, instead of heeding the knowledgeable Everton fanbase, they dithered and when they eventually took action to fire the Dutchman, which led, after a short spell all know how that ended.

But now we're in a very similar situation once again. It's been blatantly obvious to the fans for weeks, since pre-sesson for some, that Silva simply isn't good enough to do the job he was hired to do, which was to take us forward, to create a new dawn and a new team we could be proud of.

Instead, almost a quarter of the season is gone and we're languishing in the relegation zone. I won't go over all the reasons that have been well documented in numerous threads in recent weeks, but once again, we, the fans have been saying it for weeks and now we are being proved right again; what are Farhad and the board doing about ?

They're bloody DITHERING AGAIN!!! How many more defeats, how many points dropped and how far into the relegation mire do they want us to fall before waking from their disgraceful lethargy? For God's sake, wake up and listen to the fans for once. Get rid of the failure before it's too late.

Why wait for West Ham to pile more misery on us? Do it now! Let's get a bit of our self-respect back, because, quite frankly, we're a laughing stock at present.

Do something positive PLEASE.

Simon Temme
229 Posted 10/10/2019 at 23:57:00
Steve @212 in particular.

I don't post a lot, however, I'm a regular TW reader for many years.

I totally agree about your sentiment re: coaching lower levels and if nepotism is the answer.

I believe, however, that clubs with ambition would neither employ Duncan Ferguson or Joe Bloggs from Huyton school boys if they wanted to be consistently successful.

In my opinion, for what it's worth, Silva out (he won't change); Unsworth as caretaker if needed; then a manager with a winning, confident mentality who knows how to defend. Answers on a postcard if any other ToffeeWebber has any ideas?

David Foster
230 Posted 11/10/2019 at 10:42:13
The squad depth simply isn’t good enough and this is the problem that Everton have right now. I don’t want players who are going to be great in three years, I want players who can go in and do a job right now, and who know the Premier League.

This in now way let’s Marco Silva off the hook as he must take most of the blame for the way the season has turned out thus far. However I also acknowledge the lack of player recruitment that we have made in the Summer and the gaps that still exist within this squad.

Ian Pilkington
231 Posted 11/10/2019 at 11:16:24
Perhaps the best indication of the depth of mediocrity to which our club has sunk is that Moyes is 11-10 favourite to be our next manager. Shameful.
Peter Mills
232 Posted 11/10/2019 at 14:59:29
Steve #226, Dave #223,

I recall Big Joe playing well as a stop-gap centre-half in the 1971 FA Cup semi-final against the rs when Brian Labone was injured in the first half.

Harry Catterick decided to bring Sandy Brown on as sub just after half-time and put him at centre half instead. Who knows what would have happened had he not done so?

David Foster
233 Posted 11/10/2019 at 15:56:00
Ian Pilkington you are correct of course, but I’m afraid this is indicative of this football club and the stench of defeatism that hangs over it.
Kieran Kinsella
234 Posted 11/10/2019 at 16:17:26
Ian 231

I get what you're saying but I feel a bit sorry for poor old Moyesy. A legend in his own mind, presented as such for years by Kenwright, some in the media and some fans.

I can imagine his weary, weather battered face dropping if he was to read on ToffeeWeb his return would be the "depth of mediocrity." It would be like someone pouring salt on his porridge.

Dave Abrahams
235 Posted 11/10/2019 at 16:39:46
Peter (232), I was at that game and Labone went off, not long before half time, they must have had a good at getting him back on for the second half, take your word for Joe finishing the half at the back.

Another sad day in a long list of sad days, quite a few against Liverpool. I remember getting told about Tommy Wright who played that day, he went on a bender right after that game and never got home until Monday morning.

What might have been Peter, I think we’ve learned to write the scripts, when we play Liverpool, since that day, and get most of them spot on.

Kevin Latham
236 Posted 11/10/2019 at 17:02:29
Peter (232) and Dave (235),

I'm sure you'll recall that their second goal in that game came about after Toshack won a header against Sandy Brown and the ball broke to Brian Hall (I think) who scored. Toshack would never have won that bloody ball against Labone! Yet another example of how Lady Luck swerves us on derby day.

Also, Panathinaikos knocked us out of the European Cup earlier in the week, courtesy of some dodgy refereeing. Possibly the club's worst-ever footballing week as that great team went down the pan later. I often wonder if any other local team went on to consistently get the luck that we never got? Anyone enlighten me on that please?

Dave Abrahams
237 Posted 11/10/2019 at 19:50:30
Kevin (236), yes remember that Brian Hall goal putting the seal on another miserable day.

The Panathanaikos game at Goodison was even worse to take, we absolutely battered them but couldn't put the ball in the net, they even went into the lead then David Johnson equalised near the very end, but they had scored the away goal which would take them through.

That night ,me and me mate planned to get away early from the game expecting Everton to have a three- or four-goal lead so we could get off and get home to watch the first Ali v Frazier heavyweight title fight which was being shown, the fight had taken place early that morning so we knew the result. We just forgot that Everton would be Everton and leave us rushing to get home to watch the fight.

Kevin Latham
238 Posted 11/10/2019 at 23:12:40
Dave, I'm sure you remember that Panathinaikos got to the final that year, at Wembley too. From memory Ajax beat them, 2-0 I think. But even though they were a fine team Ajax weren't yet the force they were to become later. I know we Evertonians are great ‘if only...' merchants, but how different things would have been if only

Never mind though, maybe we can win the thing in a couple of years – after we concentrate on getting out of the bottom 3 that is

Peter Mills
239 Posted 12/10/2019 at 09:05:22
About 15 years ago I had to attend a conference for work – at Anfield. At first, I refused to go but it was pointed out that it was mandatory.

At the coffee break, the MC made an announcement – “We now have a special surprise for you all, a tour of our trophy room led by Mr Brian Hall”. It was the loneliest cup of coffee I ever did drink as all the other delegates filed away.

Dave Abrahams
240 Posted 12/10/2019 at 09:15:45
Kevin (238), yes let's concentrate on getting up the league and away from danger and the worry of going down!!!
Len Hawkins
241 Posted 12/10/2019 at 10:11:23
I keep saying it but the fact is the only common denominator for the last 30 years of dross is our chairman.

Why are so many ex-Everton players on the coaching staff? That's an easy answer: Kenwright. The sooner he goes, and takes the curse of the blubbering fool with him, the better.

Derek Taylor
242 Posted 12/10/2019 at 10:30:24
David Foster @ 233. Have you ever considered that it might not all be Silva's fault? Moshiri seems to have given Brands a free hand to sign some rather dodgy fringe players from clubs at which they were deemed not good enough. Price is no barrier – after all what's £20M over the odds to worry about, when we're rich?

Keane showed us last night that he is nowhere near good enough whatever the company he plays in and he was Walsh pick, I think! Big questions remain over at least half a dozen of our 'big names', whilst positively no interest is shown in introducing – even occasionally – our U23 stars.

As others have indicated, Everton is just as much a' buggers muddle' as it has been for years and tragically, the parade of managers since Moyes sneaked out has got progressively worse.

How low can we sink? Way to go yet, I suspect.

Pete Cross
243 Posted 12/10/2019 at 10:49:59
There's been a lot of complaining about too many ex-players at Finch Farm, however, I hope we keep Tim Cahill. What he lacks in coaching experience, I think he would more than make up with his motivation.
Alan J Thompson
244 Posted 12/10/2019 at 11:20:49
Steve (#222); I think you have to look to Tom Saunders (later employed over the park) who coached/managed Liverpool Schoolboys as to how Joe Royle became a centre-forward, not a position he played for a long time at Quarry Bank but did a while later and coincided with the same move at the senior schoolboy level. How or why that came about might only come from the man himself.
Alan J Thompson
245 Posted 12/10/2019 at 11:41:19
ps: I think Joe Royle's first start at centre forward for Liverpool Schoolboys was at Goodison against London Schoolboys. I was there and I think we won 4-2 but don't put money on my memory.

As a matter of interest, the Liverpool Schoolboys side had to play in blue at Goodison and red across the park, priorities to be respected even today.

Christopher Timmins
246 Posted 12/10/2019 at 11:51:48
I took a week away from the forum to see if I would feel differently about the manager's position after we slipped into the relegation slots last weekend.

With a slightly clearer head, I still think Silva should be given the next 4 games to bring about a change in results. If after 12 games, a third way through the season, results have not picked up, then time should be given to someone else to assess the playing staff before the January window. Assuming that Brands will pick the next manager and also assuming that his long term choice is in a job then I think Moyes is the most obvious solution until the end of the season.

I hope Silva turns things around and that we win the next 4 games and put a series of results together in line with the last 10 games of last season.

Paul Bernard
247 Posted 14/10/2019 at 15:29:37
What does the writer mean 'incomplete summer recruitment'???

Myself and one or two others were absolutely slammed for stating we were going to struggle and marcel has a lot to answer for. I will say it again, like Walsh was hounded out for not replacing Lukaku, Brands should be viewed the same for playing fantasy football with Zaha when clearly a center-half and midfielder was needed to replace Zouma and Gana.

I think those who gave myself and others a battering for stating the issues well before we find ourselves struggling now, owe a few of us a sincere apology.

We are fighting relegation and the manager and players don't have the guts for the fight.

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