Definition: “great energy, strength, concentration, vehemence, etc., as of activity, thought, or feeling”
It's a term that we hear more and more of each season. All managers now are praising or complaining about “intensity”. Why is it so often elusive to decades of Everton teams? Its regular elusiveness at Everton is central to the years of blight.
How do teams like Fulham turn up with double the amount of intensity to us? What's going on? Is it that the players signed are aging, have niggling injuries, just too slow and not capable of it? Or is it training, diet, lifestyle deficiencies? (Or are other teams having just-legal caffeine cocktails half-an-hour before kick-off?)
I wrote this article because I think this quality is absolutely central to our progression. Any signings that we make (it should really go without saying) have to have an abundance of quality but equally they also have to bring intensity to the table. It has to be in their physiology and in their mental make-up too. They have to be physically resilient to achieve it every week.
The importance of finding intensity cannot be overlooked in terms of getting to the promised land of the Top 4. Additionally, it is needed to keep teams like Fulham, Leeds Utd, Southampton, Newcastle Utd, Burnley, etc (and likely Norwich City next season) at bay. We can't afford to go into next season (or any future season) with a slow midfield, that is slower to the loose ball, slower at pressing, and doesn't drive forward at pace.
We have to find two midfielders with the desire and intensity of Ben Godfrey. As well as a right-back and a right-sided forward with the same. All preferably (roughly) under 25 with resilience and burning ambition.
The two or three signings that Carlo alluded to is not enough. I would say without doubt three or four are needed, especially if Moise Kean is sold, and relying on Gbamin is far too much of a gamble.
I will defer to our esteemed ToffeeWeb scouts to throw three or four names into the ring.
Reader Comments (9)
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1 Posted 18/03/2021 at 19:42:49
We are "too grand" in everything.
Fans, players, staff all refer to the esoteric myths of "nil satis nisi optimum" and "school of science" at the drop of hat. These ideals do not tally with intensity and getting your hands dirty.
The lamentable contrast to the neighbours who built an empire on intensity brought in by Shankly could not be starker.
2 Posted 18/03/2021 at 19:56:43
It has to come from the manager first of all. The recruitment my mate be right, and the players must be fit enough to do it.
The last couple of years, watching a midfield including Gomes, Schneiderlin, Sigurdsson, Bernard etc has driven me crackers. No wonder our results against the top teams have been so poor when we attack slowly and let them get back in position to defend.
Hopefully we can get a right sided midfielder and a right back in the summer and then really start playing with more tempo and intensity. We definitely need to if we plan to finish in the top 6 any time soon...
3 Posted 18/03/2021 at 20:29:42
4 Posted 19/03/2021 at 09:15:23
In recent games the spirit has been there, but some players have not been able to achieve the required levels of tactical and technical ability.
To achieve a Top four finish Ancelotti has had to push the boat out tactically, demanding , with coaching help , the players show the necessary tactical and technical ability.
The players have fell short according to Ancelotti, so I expect he will adjust tactics to ensure Everton achieve his aim of a top 6 finish.
5 Posted 19/03/2021 at 09:58:03
Herr Nobert kept it on and revved it up one
Not much has changed...we still don't have much (the last Derby not withstanding) and it needs to change.
As far as I know, Carlo's previous teams were not noted for it. Maybe it has to come from within and to do that it has to be in there.
6 Posted 19/03/2021 at 10:45:16
7 Posted 19/03/2021 at 19:05:01
8 Posted 19/03/2021 at 19:21:08
It doesn't help when the manager says or implies that he doesn't think we have the quality to be attacking and confident. Given that message, it's no surprise the players flop and take the easy choice sideways or back.
This is the most massive obstacle to Everton's success. We creep and cringe, terrified of taking the risk, and have done so for decades. If we're not careful the time will never arrive and there will still be people telling us why we should be patient.
9 Posted 20/03/2021 at 12:38:57
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