Same old same old

Graeme Beresford 02/12/2019 4comments  |  Jump to last

Same old same old... I started to write this at the end of October but never posted it:

It’s end of October and – after being handed one of the easiest starts on paper to a Premier League season – we sit in 16th. Yet again, our mentality of a small-time club has got the better of us and all we can do is look up at the likes of Leicester City in envy.

All of a sudden, we find ourselves in an all-too-rare scenario: do we stick or twist? For all of Marco Silva’s support from his players through various media reports, nobody seems to be showing that support out on the field. Marco put together a fantastic run towards the end of last season… but again, our failings in the transfer market haunt us. A centre-back and a striker - it’s surely not that hard, is it? Zouma looked great last season, yet we haven’t replaced him. The jury is still out on Mina, in my opinion. He has games which he looks a diamond and then has games where he looks slow in movement and switches off.

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Pickford is a player whom I have commented on many times. I have been critical of our England Number One goalkeeper many times and unfortunately it isn’t going to stop. Keepers (like defenders) improve with age and I understand Jordan is young but it is about time we dropped him. Jordan has a great ability to save shots, which makes us fans forget about the shots he should save. For example, against West Ham, he saved a certain goal, a tap-in from 2 yards out; yet against Brighton, a powerful free-kick, right at him, goes through his palms. It’s unforgivable and I bet keepers like Southall watch Jordan in utter distaste. Nobody has mentioned it because of the VAR decision and own goals. Fact is, Pickford should save that strike and they shouldn’t go 1-0 up in the first place.

How are we in the position we are in? I’m sick and tired of trying to put my finger on it. People would say it’s a lack of goals and not having a goal scorer when in fact, in the 12 games we’ve played this season, there’s only been 4 games we haven’t scored. I think our problem is the poor goals we concede. I put it down to Pickford and our centre-backs but I’m open to all ideas.

We have good players… yet something isn’t working. We do seem to go to pieces when it comes to defending, especially from set plays and when teams go gung-ho. Seems like the players all run towards the ball instead of man-marking and making sure there’s no easy tap-ins or space for players to give and go. As much as I hate to say it, Liverpool have perfected this. Apart from Danny Rose getting through yesterday at 2-1 down, Spurs didn’t really trouble Liverpool… yet, if that was Everton, you can almost guarantee they would have scored.

Is it a simple thing such as our luck just isn’t there? Is it a mentality thing? I mean how many teams can be leading with 10 minutes left and concede a VAR-given penalty which was never in a million years a penalty and then have our left-back blast the ball into his own net in the 94th minute? When does this happen? Yet we watch Liverpool, week after week, receive penalties for clear fouls in the box. When will our luck change? Surely one season we are going to get penalties that are dubious, injury-time winners, players sent off against us, no injuries to key players, surely one season this has to change? What do we have to do?

Is it healthy for the club that we have chopped and changed so many managers without actually giving a manager a few seasons? I suppose we have to remember a lot of these players are still from the Martinez, Koeman and Allardyce eras. Have we actually given Silva enough time to be calling for his head and watching us essentially start again? I’m not so sure…

Something isn’t right with Silva, I totally get that, but do I want him to leave for us to get another upcoming manager who will want transfer windows to build his squad in at a time were you don’t get given time, my answer is no. The only reason I would want us to give Silva the bullet is if the next day we announce Mourinho or Benitez or someone of that stature. Probably what we should have done in the first place.

It’s such a difficult thing supporting Everton, isn’t it? We have to keep the faith and believe that one day Lady Luck will click her fingers and everything will be different. Like our friends across the Park, in my opinion, Lady Luck has been with them for years. Who gets a handball penalty within the first few minutes of a Champions League Final... I mean come on!

I completely get the disillusionment around at the moment because I am too battling whether I can be bothered with this anymore. The game of football itself has become about money and, in my opinion, things like VAR have just shifted talking points from dodgy decisions by linesmen and referees to dodgy decisions by VAR.

In my opinion, VAR should be an offside technology and nothing more. If a ball flicks up and slightly brushes an opponents hand before they smash it into the net, then so be it. The technology has been brought in far too soon to the point where nobody really has an idea what it’s supposed to be used for.

The penalty given against us at Brighton was never a penalty. The simple thing is it’s football. Every now and again, someone is going to stand on your foot. The Brighton player was clever. Overreact, jump as high as you can. If this is how it’s going, then I don’t want anything to do with it.

Something needs to improve with us. Whether it’s a mixture of everything but one thing for sure is it has to happen now because, if Watford beat us tomorrow, and then Tottenham next Monday, then unfortunately for Marco, I can’t see him being here. It’s a results game at the end of the day and the results at the moment are just so poor.

Continuing my article, it’s now the beginning of December and – well, well, well… guess what? None of the above has improved. Defensively poor and lacking ideas, we have suffered two defeats on the bounce and sit in a dangerous position. I can’t even believe I am writing this because, yet again, nothing goes for us. No booking for a clear dive against us to win a penalty, Mina is punched in the stomach, Kean is elbowed in the face, one of the most poor strikers in the league comes on as a sub and has the 20 minutes of his life and we concede yet again late into injury time. I honestly don’t even know what the answer is anymore.

All I know is, for the first time in years, Wednesday evening is going to be spent in bed, with a cup of a tea and a film, with my phone switched off. We are going to get absolutely well and truly dominated from start to finish. I almost feel sorry for the people still with hope and optimism. They are going to destroy us and win the Premier League. And here we are, probably about to sack the manager and get David Moyes back in and look to stay in the Premier League itself. Laughable.

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Reader Comments (4)

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David Pearl
1 Posted 02/12/2019 at 22:15:12
We all knew it could go either way when Moshiri took over. Man City took a while to get going after a couple of investments. Spurs had a few false dawns. Leeds... hmm… and QPR –remember the numpty that took them over and relegated them (with Hughes as manager for a while).

We have some great young players and hopefully Moshiri continues his player investment. He has to or it will be a disaster. In for a penny… Sooner than later, it will click. Looking forward to next season already. First off, though... Who's da manager???

Dick Fearon
2 Posted 02/12/2019 at 23:49:09
David Pearl @1, living in the Antipodes makes it impossible to see, let alone judge, these 'great young players' you speak of. Are they twiddling their thumbs while we are in desperately short supply of their talents in the first team?

Calvert-Lewin nailing down a striker's place in the first team… it does not speak well of our academy coaching panel nor of those behind him on our pecking order of forwards.

Derek Thomas
3 Posted 02/12/2019 at 23:56:08
David Pearl @1; 'great young players' if we had any... (one?) he would be on the pitch instead of Schneiderlin and/or Sigurdsson... even as a million-to-one chance. What have we got to lose?

I know managers have favourites and blind spots about players, but ours is deep into white-stick territory.

David Pearl
4 Posted 02/12/2019 at 00:01:34
Okay, we have Richarlison. He's a pretty good young player. I could go on.

I will do this again. We have plenty of pretty good young players. They need to be managed and played in a system that helps them to progress and achieve much greatness... so that, one day, they become great players.

Phew!

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