Recruitment, Recruitment, Recruitment – The Answer to Our Problems

Five meddling years into his tenure as majority shareholder and financial backer, Farhad Moshiri should take note of words once said by Theodore Roosevelt.

Paul The Esk 24/06/2021 85comments  |  Jump to last

“The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” — Theodore Roosevelt

In July of 2020, I wrote an article called Farhad Moshiri, the solution or part of the problem?

I have to confess I felt it might have been poorly timed given we were looking forward to the first full season under Carlo Ancelotti, with planning permission and the start of work on the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock projected before the end of 2020. The long anticipated up-tick in our fortunes looked like it might just be appearing over the horizon.

Nearly 12 months on, the reality though is that Everton Football Club, and its owner Farhad Moshiri,  have yet again failed to take advantage of such a position. With Ancelotti running at the first opportunity and a totally uninspiring management selection process to date, all the evidence points to the club’s performance and decision-making not improving.

Any study of successful businesses will throw up multiple factors, such as financial resources, product development, competitor performance, strategy, timing etc. However, rarely do these factors just happen; few succeed through luck alone, there is usually the same common element. The fact is that success in any walk of life is down (assuming the resources are available to exploit the opportunity) to the quality of the people charged with creating the success.

Success can look different to different people but, in football, particularly to a club that has been in the top division for 68 consecutive seasons, surely success can only be defined by the club’s competitiveness in winning silverware.

It was Moshiri himself who said as much when attending his first AGM in January 2017 – 4½ years ago: “It’s not enough to say you are a special club and a great club, we don’t want to be a museum.”

So why are we no closer, and indeed further away from that objective, than we were then?

I’m going to offer two factors: An egotistical, misguided (but possibly well intended) owner in Moshiri; and an exceptionally weak board of directors.

I have puzzled for years why Moshiri has not wished to improve the strength of his board and executive team. I have wondered why, in the face of common wisdom and usual business practice, even the most friendly of takeovers has not resulted in a change of management, particularly when that business has under-performed so spectacularly.

Let’s not forget that successive board members at Everton have presided over nearly 30 years of strategic under-performance. Despite being one of the key participants in the formation of the Premier League, they failed to anticipate and recognise the boom years that lay ahead, opting for a safety-first approach which had the principal objective of just securing Premier League participation. No commitment to competing for silverware, or even participation in the money pot of the Champions League. How many times in the pre-Moshiri era were we a striker away from breaking into the Champions League… yet never did so?

Commercially, there was no revenue growth strategy other than reliance upon periodic increases in broadcasting income, negotiated and awarded by the Premier League. We adopted the most safety-first approach imaginable. As a result, we tied ourselves to long-term arrangements, be it sponsorship or our outsourcing models that were non-competitive relative to our peers and, in a booming market, got increasingly less competitive year after year. Since Moshiri’s arrival, that strategy hasn’t changed. Revenue growth from commercial activities has almost exclusively arisen from the USM relationship.

Yet Moshiri has seen no reason to change, and continues to see no reason to change the key architects and exponents of this failed strategy?

Recruitment, recruitment, recruitment


Changes in Directors
Appointment Date Termination Date
Robert Earl 17-Mar-16
Sasha Ryazantsev 17-Mar-16
Robert Elstone 17-Mar-16
Denise Barrett-Baxendale 13-Jul-16
Keith Harris 14-Oct-16
Robert Elstone 01-Jun-18
Marcel Brands 10-Jan-19
Jon Woods 26-Jul-19
Keith Harris 26-Jul-19

Perhaps we should just recognise this is a board that Moshiri has been and is content with. It is a board that will not present him, the owner, with much in the way of challenge. It is a board that will allow him to dictate, regardless of his skills and knowledge, whilst not holding anyone to account for their corporate performance.

Why have there been no new board appointments for more than 2 years? Why have there been no challenges to the Chair and senior executive positions? Why has there been no appointment of experienced non-executive directors to provide oversight and challenge to a business and its executives that is failing to compete?

Even with the appointment  of Marcel Brands as Director of Football, most of the major responsibilities, namely monitoring, selection and recruitment of players, training staff and managers, have at key times reverted back to the owner or the Chairman. The recruitment and appointment of managers since Martinez’s departure on 12 May 2016 has been driven entirely by Moshiri.

Despite assurances after Ancelotti’s departure of Brands controlling recruitment, that trend is set to continue with the appointment of Rafa Benitez. How can a board, how can a Director of Football, put faith in or allow the owner with a track record of managerial appointments and departures that reads like this?

Changes in Manager
Appointed Departed No of days No of games Win %
Martinez 12-May-16 143 43.4
Koeman 14-Jun-16 30-Nov-17 523 58 41.4
Unsworth* 24-Oct-17 30-Nov-17 37 8 25.0
Allardyce 30-Nov-17 16-May-18 167 26 38.5
Silva 31-May-18 05-Dec-19 553 60 40.0
Ferguson* 05-Dec-19 21-Dec-19 16 4 25.0
Ancelotti 21-Dec-19 01-Jun-21 528 67 46.3
Total 223 41.3

Focus on a few key objectives: I only have three things to do. I have to choose the right people, allocate the right number of dollars, and transmit ideas from one division to another with the speed of light. So I’m really in the business of being the gatekeeper and the transmitter of ideas.” — Jack Welch

To be fair, Moshiri has backed the club like few others, currently being the third largest benefactor in English football, just ahead of Tony Bloom at Brighton & Hove Albion. However, it has to be noted that the most recent investments have been to cover the mistakes of earlier decisions, the lack of European revenues arising from poor performance (below) plus the impact of Covid-19 on the club’s finances.

Competetive Progress
League Position FA Cup Round League Cup Europe
2015-16 11 Semi-Final Semi-Final DNQ
2016-17 7 3 3 DNQ
2017-18 8 3 4 Europa League
2018-19 8 4 3 DNQ
2019-20 12 3 5 DNQ
2020-21 10 6 5 DNQ

Our player recruitment largely has been poor. Since the arrival of Moshiri in 2016, the following players have been recruited:

Player Recruitment
Cost £m Sale £m Appearances Goals Mins
2016-17
Bolasie 26.0 0.0 32 2 2,084
Schneiderlin 20.7 2.0 88 1 6,064
Williams 12.6 0.0 73 3 6,161
Lookman 7.9 12.6 48 4 1,708
Gueye 7.7 27.0 108 4 9,004
Calvert-Lewin 1.6 173 53 11,086
Skekelenburg 0.9 0.0 26 0 2,314
2017-18
Sigurdsson 44.6 156 31 11,812
Keane 25.6 148 8 12,820
Pickford 25.6 162 0 14,553
Klaassen 24.3 12.0 16 1 820
Walcott 20.3 0.0 85 11 4,872
Tosun 20.3 58 11 2,709
Vlasic 9.7 14.0 19 2 1,016
Onyekuru 7.2 12.0 0 0 0
Ramirez 5.4 0.0 16 1 735
Martina 0.0 0.0 28 0 2,413
Rooney 0.0 0.0 40 11 3,021
2018-19
Richarlison 35.0 119 42 9,661
Mina 27.3 77 6 6,001
Digne 18.2 112 5 9,733
Zouma (L) 7.1 0.0 36 2 2,924
Gomes  (L) 2.3 0.0
Bernard 0.0 84 8 4,513
2019-20
Iwobi 27.4 65 4 3,824
Kean 24.7 37 4 1,141
Gomes 22.5 81 1 5,592
Gbamin 22.5 3 0 146
Delph 8.6 30 0 1,884
Sidibé (L) 2.3 0.0 28 0 2,090
Branthwaite 1.0 5 0 322
2020-21
Godfrey 24.8 36 0 3,179
Allan 22.5 26 0 2,211
Doucouré 22.5 34 3 2,831
Nkounkou 0.2 6 0 376
Rodriguez 0.0 26 6 2,046
Olsen (L) 0.0 0 11 0 1,150
King 0.0 0 11 0 137

“If we weren’t still hiring great people and pushing ahead at full speed, it would be easy to fall behind and become a mediocre company.” — Bill Gates

Ultimately, the last 5 years can be boiled down to failure to recruit correctly at board, executive, footballing executive and player levels. This is compounded by a failure of governance in allowing the involvement of those not qualified, and in the case of external advisors, those with not necessarily the same alignment of interests as the club.

The result is unsurprising. How can we expect to improve if we don’t recruit the best people and then allow those people to perform in line with their experiences and positions within the club? How can we possibly expect a superior outcome, a sustainable outcome driven by those not suitably qualified to create and execute the appropriate strategies and make the correct recruitment choices?

It is clear that, in the absence of luck (not advisable to rely upon), without the right people recruiting the right people, we are always going to produce inferior results to that of our better-staffed competitors, regardless of how much money is thrown at it.

Moshiri has to recognise the boundaries of his involvement in the recruitment and selection of players and managers. He could help himself enormously by allowing the Director of Football to perform his role, whilst he concentrates on recruiting better business leaders and executives.

Recruitment of the right people by the right processes is key to the success of Everton, on and off the pitch. It is the only way we can turn around our fortunes.

“If you hire only those people you understand, the company will never get people better than you are. Always remember that you often find outstanding people among those you don’t particularly like.” — Soichiro Honda

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Reader Comments (85)

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Huw Jenkins
1 Posted 24/06/2021 at 23:05:31
Paul. I love your methodical approach to breaking down what EFC is doing as a business. I run a startup and I tend to learn from experiences and adapt EFC do not. Each director has a fiduciary responsibility to vie for the clubs (the business) best interest and consequently drive growth. It's great having a billionaire backer, but it needs to be managed at an executive level whereas our recruitment strategy on all levels and being stuck with encumberments is not proactive. We have so much opportunity, but need business minds behind it. Forget sentiment, except maybe DF, we need to move forward as a business and the rest will follow. We've made some solid signings, but there are many follies. Moshiri is shrewd, why is he not applying this to Everton?
John Raftery
2 Posted 24/06/2021 at 00:06:06
Thanks Paul for a truly depressing but all too accurate stock-take of the past five years. Player recruitment is of course the key to a team's success. Too often fans suppose the solution to all our problems is selecting the right manager, a magician, when at least 80% of the outcome on the pitch is determined by the quality of the playing squad.

Generally our most successful signings in playing and financial terms have been players in their early to mid twenties. Our least successful and usually most expensive have been players in their late twenties or older. There are exceptions but overall it is very clear in which direction our transfer strategy should head. Surely it is not beyond the club's hierarchy to learn the lessons from the last five years and implement a coherent approach to squad building.

We mostly had that during the Moyes years when money was less readily available.

Christine Foster
3 Posted 25/06/2021 at 00:41:45
Paul, good perspective and accurate, in outlining facts as they stand, no disputing that the problems lie in the poor recruitment of management and the willingness to allow each to bring in players who where / are frankly not good enough. Upon each mistake, the effects are compounded and you end up where we are, with high priced, under performing individuals not playing in roles they where bought for, in a team they weren't selected for, for a manager who didn't buy them.
Personally I think the board is a cardboard cut out one, a chairman to appease the media, a DoF who has not exactly been his own man, and a CEO who is has great business front but ineffectual as a football executive, and a eye on the board for Moshiri for day to day stuff. No one appears to be driving the bus. Like you I believe the board needs more teeth and better leadership. This is a significant reason the board has not prevented the poor selections of managers and players resulting in a dreadful player investment record to date.
It smacks of Moshiri having listened to Kenwright rather than a DoF.
The owner needs to find a better leader he can trust and step back. A bigger board that holds each other and everyone in the club to account.
To date the change in ownership has not meant an improvement in leadership, its knock on effect resulting in piecemeal / jigsaw approach to what we have on the pitch and how we improve the selection of managers.
Paul Kernot
4 Posted 25/06/2021 at 01:19:15
Excellent piece Paul. All leading to the point we're at right now i.e. no new signings yet and also no real news regarding a new manager.

I'd say the majority of us on here are clinging to the slim hope that the delay is due to negotiating with someone inspirational to take us forward yet knowing the depressing reality is that with every passing day, it's more & more likely to be Benitez.

John Zapa
5 Posted 25/06/2021 at 04:49:09
'A's will usually hire other A level people, because they want to surround themselves with similarly capable people. 'B's will usually hire C level people because they want to protect their position and always appear competent and have the organisation feeling reliant on them. The more B and C level people take over a company, the nearer that company is to its end.
Christine Foster
6 Posted 25/06/2021 at 05:08:12
John, good observation, and probably a fair estimation as I think prior to Moshiri coming on board we had an awful lot of C grades and we're close to disaster financially. Down to our last lawnmower..
I think Moshiri started out trusting Kenwright, until he had to hire big Sam to protect his investment. We and he, still need the A team.
Derek Knox
7 Posted 25/06/2021 at 05:09:18
Excellent article yet again Paul, outlining the almost Amateurish Attempts at firstly purchasing, then trying to run an established Football Club. It almost beggars belief that after craving a wealthy investor for years we eventually get one, and go backwards, and have blown a King's Ransom in the process.

The managerial Merry Go Round has been bad enough, with ridiculous compensations for inefficiency and failures, but also overpaying for mediocre players and giving them longer than normal contracts only compounds the buffoonery.

We hear of Marcel Brands in the absence of a Manager/Coach being allegedly allowed to follow his pursuits of pre-determined targets, which at first sounds good, and makes sense, but what player or his greedy agent is going to sign not knowing who he will playing for/under? That is if they can see past the lucrative Contract offers on show!

Paul Kernot
8 Posted 25/06/2021 at 05:57:53
Word of the day: 'Buffoonery'. Derek #7.
Just about sums us up at the moment I'd say.
Robert Tressell
9 Posted 25/06/2021 at 07:23:00
Great article Paul. I can only rationalise the mismanagement of the footballing side by thinking football is very much secondary to Moshiri. I think he had big ambitions initially but discovered it was harder than it looked. It's now all about the stadium. Quite what the executive do I'm not sure. Brands seems willing to get paid to be overruled on the big decisions - about which he knows more than the others.

Moshiri now just wants to keep us relevant and top half to protect his investment. He'll indulge us with a bit of glamour (eg James) to keep up the big club pretence. But there's no strategy whatsoever (apart from hope & luck) to get us higher up the league

Eddie Dunn
10 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:06:55
Very sobering piece Paul, once again highlighting the problems right in the core of our club.
Too many Yes-men and woman.
Once again the timing of our pursuit of a new manager leaves us flailing around with the knock-on effect of stalling player recruitment.
The foolish appointment of a big name coach has backfired spectacularly. As Carlo rode off into the sunset we were left with a vacuum.
Moshiri is clearly being poorly advised, or perhaps he is just playing with his toy.
I have zero confidence that they will find the right person for the job.


Tony Abrahams
11 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:18:20
An article that shows us where it's all gone wrong. I have visions of Moshiri, walking around like that Harry Enfield character, telling everyone “you don't want to do it like that” whilst remembering that line by Roy Keane, about failing to prepare, properly.

Get rid of the bad apples Farhad, the people incapable of change, remember the enemy is usually within.

Jerome Shields
12 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:21:57

Jerome Shields
13 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:21:59
This a great description of Everton and a snap shot at various stages over time of a unchanging Everton, prior to Moshiri and after. Of course it is all the result of the personnel involved and there ability and effort. This all gives us all the Everton Culture that we know, love and hate today. Anyone recruited, no matter what there ability or effort, will conform to the Everton group norm of mid table mediocrity.

Some Recruits have been quite shocked by their inability to change things or not having a impact and have got away at the first opportunity using the simple maxim 'show me your company and I will tell you who you are ', fearing for their careers. Others in the Football Trade would not consider Everton a Career move.

Paul you assume like everyone would that when a organisation is taken over usually because it is underperforming that the new owners will radical change the organisation. But there are occasions when the takeover is a reverse takeover. The Culture of the takeover organisation is allowed to stay the same and the taking over organisation and owner adapt these Cultural Norms. It always perpetuates continually underperformance and huge losses that are ignored at any meeting of such organisations I have ever attended. As you would expect I was out on my ear after raising concerns. ( Great training for ToffeeWeb by the way)

So I am going to once again repeat myself. Everton prior to Moshiri was underperforming and needed to be taken over to provide turn around finance and better management. It is assumed that a successful business or owner of a organisation involved in a takeover has good management ability and good money management skills. But Everton was a reverse takeover.

All that happened at Everton was cash was introduced into the same underperforming organisation. Why was this is the main question? Amongst the reasons that could be are:

They could not purchase Everton under any other terms that accepting the continuing of the status quo. They got their shares at a discount as a result.

They wanted the purchase a Club not getting involved in it's running. Arms length investment.

They wanted to be arms length foreseeing that they would have problems with the Football Authorities and other regulatory authorities if directly involved.

They where completely Luvied by Bill, like the rest of us for too long. Actually Everton may be doing badly, but Bill has done ok.

They see Everton as a long term docklands development and hopefully they bought the Club at the correct discount.


So now we have the typical Everton situation where Moshiri is recruited a Manager to change everything, hopefully getting him a turnaround return on squandered millions. The only different is that he has decided that it is better to have a plan in place before announcing the Manager involves appointment. The other recruitment after that will be trying to keep James Rodriguez on board for his commercial value, hoping he will be suitability impressed by a Managers name he will recognise. As for Directorship they will be dished out like in a offshore companies office, to whatever secretary is available.

The saga of Everton and it's unchanging culture will continue with the long suffering Everton Fan getting more frustated.

Barry Rathbone
14 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:30:30

The only recruitment of any import surrounds the playing staff. Mosh has been playing catch up since he arrived not helped by the falsehood he was a Mansoor or Abramovich in the making. It has very little (if anything) to do with board members

Success in the prem is almost universally gained by throwing enough high grade shit at the fan in the hope some sticks. City and the rest buy high end players in great number they don't all work out but enough do to maintain their elite position
Every player we buy has to be a hit we lack the finances to buy top end and waste on failed gambles

This has nothing to do with board make up just monies available.

Brendan McLaughlin
15 Posted 25/06/2021 at 08:43:06
"Always remember that you often find outstanding people among those you don't particularly like."
With Benitez now 1/16 on with a couple of bookies, lets hope this old adage holds true.
Robert Tressell
16 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:02:18
Barry #14. I thought that too largely until I looked deeper into what the RS do. They have found a very effective way to run the club and recruitment which does not involve throwing money at it. That's because they accept they cannot compete with City and Chelsea in financial terms.

Man Utd are also moving towards that model because they can't compete either. In fact only PSG can compete, hence the superleague debacle to prop up the ailing 'big' clubs.

We're in a weird spot of throwing more money at it than the RS and getting a very poor return.

Rob Young
17 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:02:45
Imminent today for the 8th day running?
Phillip Warrington
18 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:23:42
Paul, great and informative and easy to understand. Maybe you could help with this one.

Living in Australia, we don't get or more to the point no info on Everton FC but one thing that has been circulating around is that Everton are already in trouble with Financial Fair Play and are on the borderline with having to sell players before they can buy players.

Maybe this could have helped Ancelotti change his mind about being here when the new stadium is built?

Andy Crooks
19 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:25:14
Good article, Paul. It all looks grim. But, it's been worse not that long ago. Does anyone recall,Brendan you might, not that long ago, a few ToffeeWebbers trying to raise money to invest in the club. I think Tony D'anson was one of those involved.
Anyway, there was a huge thread on here with Blues pledging what they could donate per month. I think I offered a tenner. Obviously it was pointless, we could never hope to raise enough, but it demonstrates how bad it was and how desperate we were.
Brendan McLaughlin
20 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:39:27
Remember it Andy?
I'm still paying £20 every month into the bank account you gave me the details to...
Barry Rathbone
21 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:40:34
Robert 16

Liverpool are the historic epitome of getting recruitment right on the pitch before all else. Their base of success derives from Shankly spending little (relatively speaking) but hitting the target time after time.

In the Prem era they started spending big with limited success (again relative to previous regimes) it was only with the recruitment of Klopp with his excellent eye for talent and motivational qualities did the pieces start to fit.

FSG can have credit for ploughing through managers till they got it right but little else.

John Davies
22 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:47:48
You can only recruit managers who are available. LFC were lucky that Klopp was out of work when they recruited him. It wasn't that long ago when Everton were facing bankruptcy, and that would have been that.
At one time everyone was complaining about the lack of investment at EFC, now Moshiri has arrived you start complaining about him as well. I do wonder about some of the E mails at ToffeeWeb, what strange world some people live in.
Rob Halligan
23 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:47:53
Brendan, and I'm eternally grateful for you paying that money into my account, I MEAN, that account! 😀😀
Laurie Hartley
24 Posted 25/06/2021 at 09:48:36
I always read your articles Paul and I rate this your best yet. The board, like the team is out of balance. The team is a relatively easy fix - right back and right winger. The board is a different kettle of fish but I wouldn't be surprised if there is more than the appointment of a new manager announced on Monday.
Brian Murray
25 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:02:37
Laurie. So are you alluding to our chairman and his female mate plus ex blues coaches ebbrell etc finally getting sussed / moved on ? Cold day in lucifers gaff but I hope your right. Me personally I'd have a street party the day niagra falls cheeks is removed. Then and only then we will see us being a force in the game. No matter who gets the nod as manager. Do one the waiter. Brands is starting to embarrass himself.
Brian Harrison
26 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:04:21
Paul

All your articles make interesting reading and your breakdown highlights the problems that always beset our club. On this occasion I slightly disagree with your assumption that other clubs employ people who may challenge the thoughts of the owner. That Certainly doesnt happen at City or Utd or at Chelsea, which are 3 of our most successful clubs, I don't think you can compare what happens in business to how football clubs are run. I don't know another industry were all the employees are multi millionaires, or another industry that is judged on its performances weekly.

We as a club have only appointed 3 managers since I have been watching that have actually won trophies, and only 2 of those have won a league title. Which basically tells you that our appointing of managers in that time has been woeful. And despite having a billionaire owner his football acumen sadly doesnt match his business acumen. Under his stewardship he has employed a DOF in both Walsh and Brands, which has just added another layer of confusion at the club, were we have a manager and a DOF buying players. The confusion of doing this was highlighted when we brought in King on a short term contract, it was obvious to all given the limited amount of game time he was given, clearly this wasnt Ancelottis choice, so one can only assume it was the DOF who agreed this deal.

The old saying a fool and his money are soon parted aptly fits our owner who is completely out of his depth when it comes to running a successful football club. There are 2 clubs out there who are successful and brilliantly run by their owners, yes its cost them a fortune but you don't get long term success without substantial investment coupled with high quality management. City have backed each of their managers with huge sums of money, but they knew the quality of the manager was top class so spending the money wasnt a gamble. Same at Chelsea I remember when Abramovich took over most of the press reckoned he would be gone inside 5 years little did they know. Again only hires top quality managers and backs them financially, I think the Lamphard appointment was very unusual for Abramovich but he didnt shirk in sacking him after a very short period in time.

So the method is there if you have the finances to back it up, appoint a manager who has a CV of winning multiple titles and then give him all the financial backing he requires.

Andy Crooks
27 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:05:57
Brendan, I'm sure you appreciate how the price has been kept down. We need new players, could you manage an extra fiver. The price of two lattes ffs.
Lynne Jennings
28 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:08:21
Have already bought and paid for my season tickets and as a member of the ABB club I contacted the box office this morning and found out I have until 13/7 to get a full refund. I will most definitely do this if the FSW is appointed. I have not had my faith shaken in Everton this much since the day they sold Alan Ball !!
Bill Rodgers
29 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:11:27
I am sure that the factors you mention play a part - but they are not the issue. The Everton problem is that regardless of the manager, regardless of the players signed, regardless of how much is spent - we still put out the least motivated team in the EPL - bereft of commitment, intensity, team spirit and a system.

I do not see how anyone can deny that fact. We may finish mid-table because we have high quality players but they perform only occasionally and spend more time on the treatment tables.

Everton are forever looking for the quick fix - and Moshiri has the cash and the naivety to go for it - again, and again. We expect to appoint a new saviour who will work some magic and put us in the top 5 within months. It does not happen like that. Everton must rebuild from the foundations and that means Finch Farm must produce fitness, commitment and team spirit. Perhaps the problem is that new managers are told they must keep the dinosaurs at FF because they are all heroes. They may well be but they do not motivate this team and they have failed for many years. Sure Carlo can bring in his own backroom but they are window dressing - the serial dysfunction at EFC coaching has continued for years. Perhaps it's best seen in our youth players who come through with high expectations but extraordinarily low commitment.

Whoever gets the manager's job - Moshiri should do them a favour. Clear out the FF stables now. Get the squad professionally fit, get rid of anyone who does not want to be here. We may have a difficult first season rebuilding. But at least we'll be building.

Rob Halligan
30 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:13:15
Grealish a done deal to Man City for £100M. Kane will inevitably follow him. The battle for second place next season is on!!
Brendan McLaughlin
31 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:13:55
Andy#27 & Rob #23
Panicked and was about to cancel the standing order...so thanks for the re-assurance. The good news is that I may be in a position to increase my monthly contribution as I'm expecting a little windfall from a contact in Nigeria.
PS Andy...am I mistaken or is Two Lattees a right back?
Brian Murray
32 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:20:17
If I see his kopite kipper in our dugout we might as well go the whole way and scrap z cars and trot out to hello darkness my old friend. No doubt the sad words will have blubber gob warbling in the stands. A lot of blues it seems will be done with Everton if this is announced. After half a century it's hard to just walk away. I thought big Sam was the lowest although started with Moyes reminding anyone who would listen that we should be grateful for anything.
Bill Griffiths
33 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:24:35
It seems that Favre has suddenly turned down Palace at the last minute?
I'd like to think maybe we have been in contact with him though the Red Echo still seems to think Benitez is more or less Adobe deal.
Brendan McLaughlin
34 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:38:41
Bill#33
It's being reported that Favre isn't ready to return to football management just yet but I suppose that could be smoke and mirrors.
Dave Abrahams
35 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:44:01
Bill (29), good post, doing what you suggest would solve a lot of problems and improve the performances and our position in the league, also our moods watching them. One of the biggest problems is moving on poor players, who won't move because of the huge and ridiculous contracts they were given.
Paul Richardson
36 Posted 25/06/2021 at 10:54:57
Brendan (15). Surely the issue is whether or not Benitez is outstanding? Given the company he's got, he might be, short-term because we have a slow, defensively-sound and motivated set of players, which suit his style. The new dawn to take to Bramley Moore will not arrive with him, but it might allow the board (with the A-class executives added, as Paul recommends) the time to re-group and forge a positive strategy towards that goal.
Danny O’Neill
37 Posted 25/06/2021 at 11:01:47
Well Paul and everyone, I apologise up front as this could be a long one.

You make very resonating points, which I relate a lot to leadership. Any organisation's success depends on the effectiveness and competence of its leadership and their willingness to see their vision through. If that is understood at all levels, you are more likely to get universal buy in from the work force, which delivers the success. And recruitment is a vital component of that.

Any leader, regardless of ability or style, needs to be surrounded by other good, effective leaders and managers. Not just people who agree with them and are bought into the vision, but people who can also challenge and influence their decision making.

Our owner seems to still be surrounded and influenced by a sentimental old guard or collection of nodding dogs, afraid to challenge him or give him advice when needed.

Recruitment, recruitment, recruitment. In my present company, the VP get's to say which Directors they wish to employ. The Directors have the final say on the Managers without overt Director involvement. The Managers employ the analysts they want with minimal, if any, Director involvement. Because we are all bought into the vision and understand what is needed to realise it. We are trusted and empowered because of the recruitment process.

I know that model doesn't necessarily equate to all businesses and football is unique. But, if you have the right people in place who understand the strategic intent, you can better delegate, empower, cascade and trust the people you trust to execute and implement. Hold them responsible, but let them get on with it, free from interference at multiple levels from an autocratic type of organisation, which inevitably and eventually introduces complexity and confusion.

"The price of greatness is responsibility". Take responsibility Mr Moshiri. Own it. Surround yourself with the right people. Once you have that, delegate and empower those people. Hold them accountable for carrying out your strategic vision. Allow them to do likewise with those they trust and hire. And so it cascades down until we have a situation where at all levels, everyone is working to the strategic direction and intent. Right down to the the tactical level, which here, is the football pitch and the academy. Even though they won't necessarily realise it as they're focussed on playing successful football; the deliverable. But the conditions have been set because of a coherent vision and strategic direction, implemented from top to bottom by trusted people, to enable it to be built from the bottom up.

I don't doubt that Ancelotti departing in the manner he did has sent shock waves through the club and in particular at board room level. However, could this blow now be turned into an opportunity for the owner to restructure the club and recruitment at all levels?

That's ambitious, it sounds like a long-term plan. It would be and should be. But there are always quick wins and tactical things that can be achieved that fit the longer-term vision.

Second apology of my post. That was deep, but the article provoked a lot of thought. I've spared you of comparisons to military operations, so be thankful for that!

Ian Burns
38 Posted 25/06/2021 at 11:11:58
Terrific article Paul as always, which comes with thanks for the time you take on each subject you raise. Not sure I am 100% in agreement with all that was said but Brian (26) has in my view answered any questions I myself would have raised. That was an exceptional post Brian.

Alan J Thompson
39 Posted 25/06/2021 at 11:19:59
To expect anything to improve it must start at Board level but for that we must first know what the deal is that keeps us with this unambitious Chairman.

It does seem though to be a start as you mean to go on effort and for improvement Mr Moshiri must insist, first privately and if necessary publicly, that Kenwright stands down and then appoint to the Board somebody who will allow Brands and Ryazantsev to do that which needs doing as per Teddy Roosevelt and under the eye of a more dynamic CEO. The departure of the last Manager and the appointment of his replacement seems only to magnify the lack of competent leadership.
And I can't see it improving if it then needs running by some sort of Fan's official representation.

Laurie Hartley
40 Posted 25/06/2021 at 12:38:53
Brian # 25 - put it like this. If I, having pumped 4 or 5 hundred million into a club over the course of five years, found myself back to Square One, I would be fairly cheesed off. I would be looking for the root cause of the problem which presumably, as nothing had changed, still existed.


Kunal Desai
41 Posted 25/06/2021 at 12:40:31
Great article, Paul, something I've been banging on about for ages. This club will never move forward until an actual plan and strategy is in place to progress season upon season.

The mindset of club is one that thinks they are still operating and working in the dinosaur age of the 80s.

Look at the culture of the club? It's rotten to the core. Why does Kenwright still have involvement at board level? He should be made a honoury chairman like Doug Ellis was. DBB is a glorified PA. What is Ryazentsev's role?

Moshiri needs to recruit and get it right at the top, clean the club out at board level and bring in those with actual business acumen. Until then, we are mid-table fodder going nowhere.

Robert Tressell
42 Posted 25/06/2021 at 12:43:49
Laurie #24. Bang on. The first XI is a relatively easy fix with RB and RW needed. Let's say it's Aarons and Bailey, that will give us a very good side. But it's probably about 6th or 7th ish best side in the league but with a very ropey looking 2nd XI.

At some point we've got to be more strategic about our recruitment to deliver quality and numbers - because when injuries hit last season it was back to the side that got Silva sacked. The RS and Leicester have done this very effectively (variation on the Leipzig model) while we outspent them both by some measure over the past 5 years.

Looking at the list of our signings, neither the RS, Leicester nor Leipzig would have touched our them with a barge pole other than Lookman, DCL, Vlasic, Branthwaite, Godfrey, Gbamin, Pickford and Digne - and maybe Gueye, Keane, Mina, Kean.

Buying players outside of this profile is hurting the club big time.

Rob Dolby
43 Posted 25/06/2021 at 13:51:05
Paul another great article.

I am caught in 2 minds over Moshiri.

Is he in it to fulfill an ego trip and be the face of a successful football club similar to what Randy Learner tried to do and failed at Villa? Is he out of his depth?

On the other hand is he the front man for USM. With London already awash with Russian money he has targeted the North West as an opportunity wash more Rubles?

Maybe the enormity of the task has hit home. We are a top 10 club paying top 10 wages. The step up to top 6 needs more investment which hasn't been provided. A series of managerial mistakes and not learning from mistakes has cost us as a football club.

Backing Koeman and Allardyce but not backing Ancelotti was baffling.

Employing Ancelotti made the footballing world sit up and take note. A handful of decent signings got us into a great position going into January. We where linked with real Madrid players coming to the ends of their contracts and Juventus players. In the end we got the underwhelming Josh king from the championship. I don't believe for 1 minute that Ancelotti was happy with that. The 'project' had been exposed as a red herring and Carlo was gone at the first opportunity.

On the playing side we are back to square 1. Looking for a new manager and hoping for investment to turn a mediocre squad into a top 6 one.
Laurie at 24. We need much more than 2 signings to improve us.

Off the pitch the wheels are in motion for a £500m stadium to be built with all of the associated contracts and corporate sponsorships waiting to be made.

Bill Hawker
44 Posted 25/06/2021 at 14:42:40
Paul,

Another well thought out article. Always a great read.

My biggest concern is that we've been on a knife's edge since Martinez left in terms of either:

A) Breaking into the upper echelon (top six) or
B) Watching it all crumble and become a team fighting for it's Premier League life.

It wasn't long ago that Big Sam came in and, to his credit, steadied the ship and got us back up and running. My fear is that we're much closer to a few years of relegation battles than we are top four/top six battles.

There isn't much difference between the two where we're concerned. So, in that respect, it's at this very moment in time that Moshiri and Brands must get this right or rather than become the next Leicester, we become the next Leeds United or Aston Villa, who, after years of mismanagement, were finally relegated.

Justin Doone
45 Posted 25/06/2021 at 15:49:48
He's definitely part of the solution!

Without his millions / billions we would already be a struggling championship club. At best a relegation zone team managed by Sam A, Pulis or perhaps Unsy and Dunc who are learning on the job.

Without money, we sell and struggle to recruit. Bill is still in control or sells us to a dastardly profit orientated owner who invests nothing and puts us back up for sale.

We have no plans for the uncertain future and dreaming of the next Rooney, to sell and see little investment.

We may be rudderless but we are a float with the promised lands in sight. Thee captain maybe have abandoned ship but our motley crew are made of stern stuff.

There's no turning back, onwards and upwards.

Bill Fairfield
46 Posted 25/06/2021 at 16:25:00
It makes you wonder how Moshiri made his billions, obviously he had the right people around him to make it happen. Unfortunately he hasn't brought people of the same skills into the football boardroom and is struggling as a result. He must know what needs to be done, he needs to get on and do it and soon. He either wants to take on the world or remain as a nice family parochial club.
Don Alexander
47 Posted 25/06/2021 at 17:13:00
I genuinely admire the author, albeit some of the monetary stuff is way above my understanding, and that's my fault. That said, he is surely this time stating the bleedin' obvious.

Many Toffees make it pretty clear that bad luck/hoodoo/conspiracy is to them the problem bedevilling our club whilst only a relatively few see actual humans as the cause of all human misbehaviour. To say misbehaviour, knowing, reckless or neglectful, has been rife for decades in Everton's boardroom is a gigantic understatement.

And yet the chief culprit is newly minted way beyond his previous significant fortune as a result of having unearthed our absent gullible owner, he's still chairman in what Monaco's finest scrivener terms "an enhanced role", he's put Lil' Miss Dynamite on the board (no doubt, he might say, despite fierce competition from The Cat's Protection charity), he's infested the club with unproven, largely broken ex-players in a bid to try to live off their alleged "legendary" status and show what a great bloke he is by being so charitable whilst they might learn or not, at low cost, to become moderate coaches.

Jeez, our "leaders" personify the adage "There's none so blind as those who will not see."

Still, maybe the Mosh, having already lost £half a billion or whatever, will take losing half the match-going revenue as and when FSW is appointed pretty much in his stride too, and blame bad luck/hoodoo/conspiracy yet again.

Jay Harris
48 Posted 25/06/2021 at 17:17:23
Excellent post Paul and good comment by Jerome.

I remember Keith Harris describing Everton as the most dysfunctional board he has ever worked with and I am sure Carlo felt the same by the end of last season.

The club has the "feelgood" factor but there is no substance behind it so it quickly gets found out.

Even Brands has not shown his worth despite a lot of goodwill in his direction.

We seriously lack football people like Les Reed previously Southampton and Kevin Thelwell of Wolves.

It is interesting that we baulked at Nuno because he wanted to bring his own team in and push Duncan to one side and yet want Benitez because he is so accepting and Brands can "work with him" and we can retain Dunc.

Personally in that scenario we need to give the job to big Dunc and help him with someone like Joe Royle babysitting him.

This is a major watershed for Moshiri and the club. If he gets it wrong it could be D-day. If we get it right it could be the turning point we have craved for so long.

Getting rid of black Bill and replacing him with a football man and hiring someone other than Benitez would be a first step in a new direction.

Brian Murray
49 Posted 25/06/2021 at 17:20:11
Kundal post 41. Spot on kidda. But who on the board is going to point this obvious flaw out to moshiri. Be like turkeys voting for Xmas. Sad times with the big nelly in the room no chance of letting go. Re teary arse.
Dale Self
50 Posted 25/06/2021 at 18:33:15
Ah, Jack Welch. What a choad. But back to the article, fair conclusion on Moshiri. That reveals the economic interests as his motivation here. And I'm reading that as get out of Brands' lane, agreed. The free ride Bill gets to the stadium is his managerial testimonial, let's just get okay with that. It could have been worse with some Vulture Capitalist even though it is easy to see the corporate success story next door and think it might have been worth the risk.

We're here now and I would think that the fanbase has made itself and its state of mind well known to the owners/mgt and they would appreciate being able to get past Carlo without protests. Seems like this should work out if we can put some pressure on Moshiri for some articulation of long term goals that result in observable moves that make sense. With the money he has contributed he deserves some patience but he needs to lead through times like these if he is going to set up that kind of board structure and management.

Oh I almost forgot a couple of Will Rogers quotes:

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there."

There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.

Howard Sykes
51 Posted 25/06/2021 at 18:46:30
Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail.
Tom Harvey
52 Posted 25/06/2021 at 19:35:57
Kunal Desai @ 41

Have a look at the webpages on the club site about Ryazentsev and Miss Dynamite, probably like me you'll come to the conclusion that Ryazentsev is the business (CEO) behind our club and will also deliver the new stadium. Miss Dynamite is there to provide a Scouse presence, smile, attach herself to various charities and good caused while masking what Ryazentsev is doing.

The words I'm looking for to describe Miss Dynamite activities are schmooze and obfuscate?

Compare their employment histories and from my reckoning it's Ryazentsev who's running the club when Moshiri is not there.

Laurie Hartley
53 Posted 25/06/2021 at 23:31:27
Rob # 43 - I can't understand how you don't think the two signings in the two positions I suggested would improve us. We are talking about improvement after all - not top four.

Apart from that, the more I think about Paul's article the more I am convinced that Moshiri, and it seems Usmanov have to start making some tough decisions.

Paul's last quote:

“If you hire only those people you understand, the company will never get people better than you are. Always remember that you often find outstanding people among those you don't particularly like.”

Very subtle Paul.

I read somewhere that Usmanov had stated the club needed an “impulse” from the top down. I think that impulse is on its way.


Paul [The Esk]
54 Posted 26/06/2021 at 00:34:49
Some really interesting comments thank you all.

#53 Laurie, that last quote works at so many levels with Everton

Brendan McLaughlin
55 Posted 26/06/2021 at 01:07:31
Paul [The Esk]
Just one more...Do you think Kenwright has the influence that many ToffeeWebbers credit him with?
Jerome Shields
56 Posted 26/06/2021 at 07:33:29
Brendan#55

Kenwright is Current Everton Culture Protector in Chief.

Robert Tressell
57 Posted 26/06/2021 at 07:46:30
For so long as Moshiri remains interested (probably Usmanov too) then we're in no danger of relegation. As we've seen, at the first sign of relegation danger, Moshiri wields the axe and opens up the purse strings.

And whatever we think about the strategy, Moshiri clearly has one. And the objective of that strategy is not Champions League football and silverware. That's the fans' objective.

Moshiri's objective revolves around the stadium. And while the stadium is on the cards and being built, Everton will adopt a poor value but low risk recruitment strategy. That means foregoing any chance of footballing success unless achieved through extraordinary management and / or luck.

So the present managerial appointment is not as critical as many make out. Anyone of any calibre will have Everton in the top 10 and competing for best of the rest 6th or 7th place. There's no ambition beyond that for the immediate future.

However, I think Brands sticks it out because there is genuine ambition post BMD. He is therefore tasked not with overseeing the (dire) recruitment strategy but with the scouting network and academy. He's already made much progress here. Being optimistic we could have quite a few talented academy players knocking on the first team door in three years. It's not a class of 92 but it's a start. And it should help considerably in building a high quality competitive squad without the riches of Chelsea and City.

Danny O’Neill
58 Posted 26/06/2021 at 08:01:11
That's is a very articulate account Robert and I agree - to my long-term vision but some tactical gains along the way point of view.

The immediate aim is to stay in the fight and maybe just so happen to get that bit of luck or fortune that projects us forward a little quicker. We have to remember, although it shouldn't have come to that, we could have qualified for Europe on the last day of the season. One game away.

But I agree, the long-term vision is Bramley Moore Dock and beyond, not necessarily what we do at Goodison next season.

Jerome Shields
59 Posted 26/06/2021 at 08:11:36
It's going to be Benitez lads. Moshiri is being unduly diligent thinking that he better get the Club talking and on board internally, whilst Usmamov is still about to give those not enamoured a bollicking , before is it is announced externally to verbal abuse and ridicule, just prior to preseason. Benitez main qualifications are he is a big name who may be able to keep the commercially viable Rodriguez on board, attracting the like, and he is nastier than Anchelotti, with the ability to continue to implement the Anchelotti plan.

This is Management and Recruitment the Everton way. . Brands will be at the announcement with a XXXXXL Everton Shirt with Benitez's name on it, with Kopites everywhere swearing at the TV.

Enjoy.


Tony Abrahams
60 Posted 26/06/2021 at 08:24:24
What do you think will happen once the stadium is built Robert, Usmanov will buy Everton and start looking for us to win things, maybe?

If it's true that the Saudi's, are close to purchasing Newcastle, then I expect them to spend, spend, spend, but give me good sensible management, over what has presided over Everton, since Moshiri came on board, and once we've got a proper structure in place, then maybe we might just be able to move forward.

Whilst I have never had any inclination to think there has been any kind of power struggle at Everton, I do feel that to many people have been in their positions for way to long, and because I believe familiarity brings contempt, this is what I'd be really looking to change at finch/farm, and feel this would be the best way to revolutionize Everton football club, if Robert is correct and we are going to tighten the purse-strings until Bramley Moore dock is finished.

Robert Tressell
61 Posted 26/06/2021 at 08:47:25
Tony I've no idea what might happen post BMD but at least stadium build won't be the primary objective anymore.

In the meantime, I don't necessarily expect us to tighten up on the spending. I generally expect us to have a net spend of about £60m this summer, getting to about £100m or so gross if we can sell Kean for c. £40m. There's no chance of a big clear out to bolster the kitty further.

£100m or so is enough for the RB and RW that Laurie notes will correct (though by no means perfect) the first XI. It'll also buy a little bit more depth. But it's not going to materially change our footballing fortunes. We'll end summer with something like the 6th or 7th or even 8th best team.

Rob Halligan
62 Posted 26/06/2021 at 08:52:31
So Moshiri's strategy is not to win anything or qualify for Europe, but to solely survive in the Premier League until the new stadium is built?

So I can just imagine when we are trying to sign new players, “Now listen (insert name), the objective is simple, we have no intention of trying to win a cup, or qualify for Europe, we just want to survive in the Premier League until we have built our new stadium.”

“How do you feel about that?” says Moshiri / Kenwright / and or Brands to prospective signing, as the door is slammed shut as player and agent leave the building!!

Great strategy that!

Colin Glassar
63 Posted 26/06/2021 at 09:12:36
I think the club have handled this controversial appointment well, to a degree. They have let the fan base blow their top and have waited for things to cool down before making the FSW our manager.

Like some, I have gradually started to accept (not like) the idea of him being in charge. He wouldn't be in my top six list of preferred managers but he is a cold, ruthless, results orientated manager.

I thought koeman might be the man to break the cuddly warm Everton mould but he never seemed interested in the “project” so if Benitez is tasked in turning us into a lean, mean, killing machine I hope he has the mandate to shake things up big time starting with Mr Blobby and his old boys network at the club.

I'm all for tradition and values and history etc… but in the modern game that doesn't win you games. There is far too much complacency at Everton far too many sinecures. If Usmanov wants Rafa to start a revolution than “everyone to the barricades”!!! Viva la revolucion!!

Danny O’Neill
64 Posted 26/06/2021 at 09:19:01
In honesty Rob, we're all second guessing and none of us really know. Paul's article has sparked good debate.

My guess (hope? - there I go again), is that he has a strategic vision based on Bramley Moore Dock and the new Stadium. In the meantime, try to get some short-term gain on the pitch with a trophy or European qualification, but in the main, tread water in the top half of the Premier League.

I feel dirty for saying that, but the more I think, the more it seems to fit with what he's doing.

The alternative is that he has no idea what he wants other than to build a shiny new stadium and stay in the top flight. I personally doubt that as he's a successful businessman who will want to succeed. He is slowly putting the building blocks in place, but slower than us supporters want or hoped for.

But he's not a football man, so going back to the theme, needs to surround himself with the right people to advise him and also, implement his strategy. To date, he's made mistakes in his appointments, but I guess he's thinking the long game whereas we think week to week.

Rob Dolby
65 Posted 26/06/2021 at 11:02:35
Laurie 24 maybe I misread your post. I see our team as unbalanced at best and totally disjointed at worst held together by a decent defence and 2 lads that score our goals.

"The team is a relatively easy fix - right back and right winger".

Whilst those 2 positions would improve us. We have deficiencies across the entire midfield and lack pace almost everywhere. We also need competition for the strikers. When was the last time we had a proper left mid?

If we buy just those 2 players expect another finish between 10th and 7th.

Robert Tressell
66 Posted 26/06/2021 at 11:27:26
Rob, you are right too. The trouble is, we don't have anything like enough money to invest heavily enough to get us into top 4 in just one summer. That would take about £250m to £500m - and might involve signing up to about 10 players.

We are, in effect, competing to finish highest between 5th to 10th along with Leicester, Spurs, Arsenal, Villa, WHU and Leeds. And maybe win a cup.

A high quality right flank of, say, Aarons and Bailey would get us very competitive in our mini-league. But we still wouldn't have a stand out first XI (or squad) compared to Arsenal, Spurs and Leicester.

It is possible to build a very high quality squad over a longer period if you don't have money - but you have to do it in the way the RS and Leicester have done it, by becoming very effective sellers of players to generate money to reinvest in the squad.

Otherwise we're relying on a lot of luck both in matches and with injuries and, as Ancelotti put it, more of a magician than a manager.

Paul Tran
67 Posted 26/06/2021 at 11:35:57
Usual good stuff from Paul.

11 years ago, I spent two days working at a newly-enriched North West England football club. I was told first-hand they were modelling their community programme on Everton's (I think that's behind Kenwright's self-congratulatory quote).

Every dept I worked with (no footballers/coaches) told me they were under severe pressure to achieve increased financial/professional targets. Their suppliers were ramping up prices because of the 'new money'. Some clearly embraced the change, some were clearly worried. It was made very clear that it was happening and it was going to work.

That's the 'impulse' that I feel hadn't happened at Everton yet.

Money on its own is helpful, but needs to be backed up by the recruitment of purposeful management that changes a sleepwalking culture to one that demands hard work and achievement.

Nothing will change at Everton until the culture is changed.

Steve Brown
68 Posted 26/06/2021 at 11:53:04
Paul @ 67, what you are describing there is the introduction of a high performance culture. To change a culture, you have to look at operating norms and behaviours and that has never been attempted at Everton despite the input of money.

Those who reflect the old culture need to move on as they will be threatened by the change and will try to obstruct it. Moshiri is a tax exile so can only spend a limited number of days in the UK, hence he needs to delegate. His biggest mistake - huge - been to leave Kenwright in place as he epitomises the old cultural norms. That is not an anti-Bill agenda, it is just how a business changes after a takeover.

Laurie Hartley
69 Posted 26/06/2021 at 12:16:21
Danny # 37 - about “sparing us comparisons with military operations”. As several posters have commented about the need for “cultural change” and sorting the hangers on out (my words not theirs), perhaps you could reconsider and explain to us how Sun Tsu would solve the problem😉

Rob - I don't want to go off topic on Paul's thread so maybe I will submit my thoughts about improving the team in a “talking points post”.

Steve Carse
70 Posted 26/06/2021 at 12:30:04
Robert (66), I can't agree that we don't have enough money to get top 4 next season. Staying top 4 yes, but last season we were only 3 points behind Chelsea at the 32-game mark (and Chelsea went on to lose two of their last 6), despite having just two strikers and the most ponderous midfield in the country (not to mention a manager who had probably already eyed his escape).
Of course it would require astute transfer dealing and good management, both notably absent in recent years, but it would be overly pessimistic to write the possibility off.'
Danny O’Neill
71 Posted 26/06/2021 at 12:46:55
Sun Tzu Laurie? Now you've only just had me reach for my handbook from my course I attended when I commissioned from the ranks. The knife, fork and spoon course as we referred to it as they taught us common soldiers how to behave properly in the mess amongst the proper officers!!

Given Paul's post contained some quality quotes, here's one from Sun Tzu that I think suggests he was an Evertonian before Everton existed:

"Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat".

The two have to go hand in glove. If you have a strategy but no means of implementing the tactics, you might get the odd win over time but long term, you're plodding along with nothing more than grand visions and big talk. Conversely if you have no strategy, you will may win a short term victory and make some noise in doing so, but eventually you will come a cropper. Kind of sums Everton of the last 30 years up. No strategy and subsequently, questionable tactics in various guises along the way. Some tactical highlights and memorable moments, but few and far between in the bigger strategic sense, and ultimately, no trophies.

Everton need a strategy. Perhaps we have that with the stadium plans and vision, which high level, should be to be challenging for the title and regularly qualifying for European competition.

What we seem to lack is the right team around Moshiri to recruit the right people to implement the tactics that will build and eventually deliver on the strategy.

I haven't even had a drink yet and I'm philosophising early on a Saturday! Trying to save myself for Denmark v Wales!! Hopefully I'll last until Italy v Austria.

Phil Wood
72 Posted 26/06/2021 at 12:47:09
Thank goodness ToffeeWeb is full of business alumni who have the key to all Everton's problems.
A simple solution for most is to see the back of Bill Kenwright, re-educate Moshiri and tell Usmanov what he should be doing with his money.
Obviously our Managers have been very poor compared with expectations but how many other Clubs have fan bases who are happy with the way their Clubs are run - Utd, Spurs, Newcastle, Arsenal.
This is not a simple game and abusing all and sundry will just make matters worse.
Yes, Moshiri has made plenty of mistakes but I would rather have the money to make mistakes with than nothing at all.
Whoever gets the Managers job must be backed by the fans. If it's Rafa then so be it. It will push the Club backwards if there are protests. Don't drive out the money or future sponsors of the Club. If you feel so strongly about it then just don't go.
Robert Tressell
73 Posted 26/06/2021 at 12:50:55
Steve, I don't write the possibility off entirely - like I say it would require a lot of luck (on top of a good summer). But the reason Chelsea were within reach was awful management of a brilliant squad by Lampard. Now that Chelsea have a proper manager it's much more difficult.

Another way to put it is this: do you think Villa have a chance of top 4 next season? Because we're very close in terms of squad quality.

Laurie Hartley
74 Posted 26/06/2021 at 13:09:22
Phil # 72 - very sarcastic opening comment in you post that.

There are some very clever people posting on ToffeeWeb - I am not one of them but if I feel strongly enough about something this forum provides me with a platform to vent. One of the things that I do feel very strongly about is that somewhere in the region of 4 or 5 hundred million quid has been spent with little or nothing to show for it. Whose watch did that happen on?

My impression is that not many ToffeeWebbers want Moshiri and Usmanov to go. Kenwright is a different matter.

As far as Benitez is concerned I think most of us have got over the initial shock and will back him (and therefore the people who appointed him).

Chris Gordon
75 Posted 26/06/2021 at 14:01:11
Running a successful organisation at any level is all about people. The recruitment process at Everton has been nothing but shocking, that includes players, managers and executives. The imminent arrival of benetez is a further example of the unbelievably dire decision making when it comes to appointment of people. This appointment will drive a wedge between the fans and the board, like nothing we've seen since the Peter Johnson day's.
Paul Tran
76 Posted 26/06/2021 at 15:06:34
Steve #68, yes that's spot-on. I don't have the impression that as a club and business, Everton wants success badly enough.

I'm still amazed that despite pouring millions into the club, Moshiri has largely left a treading water at best business alone.

Jimmy Hogan
77 Posted 26/06/2021 at 15:26:29
We thought Moshiri was the billionaire with nous, vision and a ruthless streak. It turns out he was just that guy's best friend.
Christy Ring
78 Posted 26/06/2021 at 17:20:45
Paul A very articulate and accurate assessment of our club since Moshiri took charge. I do think Ancelotti leaving was a kick in the teeth for Moshiri, especially after the massive contract he gave him. I'm not a fan of Benitez, but it looks like a done deal, so he'll get my support. He'll be under severe pressure from day one, so the recruitment is huge. He needs to bring pace to the team, with an attacking midfielder, a winger, full back and if Kean is off another striker. Hope the speculation is true about Sigurdsson, his time is up, Delph has been a disaster, so if we can get rid of him, won't be easy, but two big earners off the payroll. Gbamin will hopefully have a full preseason, so the right recruitment by Rafa, and all will be forgotten??
Roberto Birquet
79 Posted 26/06/2021 at 19:46:29
Moshiri's track record of involvement in football matters: choosing managers is woeful and about to hit a new low.

Don't give me the "get over him being a Red" crap. If this were Brendan Rogers, I'd be on board. Hungry, exciting football, fits the mould for his recruiting of young players (the only way of sustaining the club even medium term), and even proven results - not made CL? give me a pair of 5th places and FA Cup win, I'd bite yer freaking hand off.

Rafa Benitez is another yesterday man, like much of our recruitment of managers and even players, and his football is dull - I never understood why Reds loved him so much. Had those two cup final pen shootouts gone against would they still have loved him?

Hollywood - or whatever this is - does not win football games, Mr Moshiri. How the Fuck have you not noticed that yet?

Alan J Thompson
80 Posted 27/06/2021 at 07:16:26
If it wasn't for the probability that they are or have been part of the problem I might listen to the voices that said that we shouldn't become a museum and that we are living in the past.
Who or what could they possibly be referring to without seemingly being able to do anything about it, unlike the making of a fortune off the park and a high and internationally accepted reputation on it.
Tony Abrahams
81 Posted 27/06/2021 at 07:24:25
I think if you say something often enough you can convince a lot of people including yourself, and this is exactly how I feel when reading that Everton need to spend hundreds of millions on their squad.

We have already got a few decent players and a few good players, we just need a few more in key positions and a manager who can then mould his squad into a good team.

Belief has got to be the key, and finding a couple of players with the right determination is usually a good way to start.

Danny O’Neill
82 Posted 27/06/2021 at 07:41:37
Ancelotti's departure was unexpected and was like taking a blow below the belt Tony. We, the supporters and the club are still picking ourselves up and pulling up our shorts.

If we dust ourselves down and dry our eyes, we are still in the same situation as we were, regardless of Ancelotti. We have a decent team and last summer's signings improved us. A team that very nearly qualified for Europe. But a thin squad. The next step, regardless of manager is to have a similar transfer window. In my opinion, that is to bring in a couple of experienced heads and a couple of young players with potential, just as we did last year.

Hopefully (that word again), this is what the DoF is charged with doing and it almost becomes irrelevant who the manager is as they just coach the players and first team.

If we get another 4 or 5 in and offload a couple that have been clinging on as much as I have as a supporter, all of a sudden, Everton 2021-22 looks very different from Everton summer of 2020 as that will have been 8 - 10 new players in and quite a few out the door.

Blind faith is taking over me again. I'm looking up, not down. I'm going to Europe with Everton in season 22-23.

Jerome Shields
83 Posted 27/06/2021 at 08:14:24
I do think that a big consideration in the Manager selection process is getting the right fit to continue with a existing preconceived plan of squad development.
Robert Tressell
84 Posted 27/06/2021 at 19:33:05
There's definitely a bit of that Tony. But often people are talking about two different things. The spending (or a much better strategy) is what makes us genuinely competitive for top 4. Getting a tune out of the existing squad and sorting out our right flank is what gets us competitive in the 5th to 10th places.

Tony Abrahams
85 Posted 27/06/2021 at 19:47:41
No European football for Everton next season Robert, and with international tournaments in both Europe and South America, this summer, on top of what will have been a lot of continuous football since last June, then it's possible that all this football, might eventually catch up with some teams, especially those in Europe next season, and then there is also the African nations cup.

I always live in hope with Everton, but we need to get in a new manager now and start getting ready to work, because hard work is everything, and it's definitely the route Everton need to be taking, more than any other now.


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