Death By A Thousand Cuts

Steve Hogan 27/04/2022 84comments  |  Jump to last
On Wednesday 6 April, I set off from my home near Chester, bound for what I always called 'an old fashioned football town'. I was foolishly optimistic and expected a robust performance from Burnley, who I saw revert to Route One football by their then manager Sean Dyche a couple of weeks before. It was and still is, bloody freezing at Burnley, being in the foothills of the Pennines.

After watching an ordinary start from both teams in the first half, and following a nightmare display by Jonjoe Kenny (which continued throughout the game), Burnley took the lead.

Somehow, Everton then managed to gain two penalties to put them 2-1 up at half-time. The second half saw a dramatic collapse by Everton's defence to allow the home side an unlikely win.

For my money, that match summed up Everton's season in one, the team displayed a worrying fragility and absolutely no spirit for a scrap.

By the 22 May, and possibly sooner, we will know our fate. I've been spoilt in my lifetime, I've never seen us play in anything but the top flight, and saw us pick up four league titles, FA Cups, and a European trophy.

All those teams had a steely mix of great skill and resilience about them, and could mix it with any opponent who saw fit to play that way. Sadly, this team displays no such qualities, and lack a real leader.

So as we think the unthinkable and what that will mean for the club on and off the field, I will give my own two pence worth as to where it all started to go wrong.

Since June 2013, when Everton appointed Roberto Martinez, we have gone through a further six managers, and I have not included the interim appointments of Unsworth and Ferguson during this time.

Any club that goes through seven manager's cannot hope for any short or long term progress, and whilst not all the managerial 'fixes' were disastrous, a number were doomed to failure and ludicrously expensive in subsequent compensation packages to the managers concerned.

There is no way for example that Allardyce or Benitez should have been allowed anywhere near this club, whilst admittedly Ancelotti ran for home as soon as Real Madrid came calling.

Such was the hatred for the former two, that they stood no chance of receiving the backing from the fans as soon as initial results tailed off.

Anyway, to the crux or heart of the matter (in my opinion). Whilst possibly Kenwright's greatest ever achievement during his tenure, was the procurement of a fabulously wealthy benefactor in Moshiri, his greatest trick worthy of Harry Houdini , was persuading the new owner to allow him to remain in charge of the club, whilst quietly pocketing £15m into the bargain for his efforts.

The 'greatest Evertonian' is adept at running an organisation who in 2019 had a turnover of £188M, from a base in London 200 miles away. Why, at 76 years old would you want that responsibility? Vanity, power, toy set, a whole manner of reasons have been put forward.

We have a CEO in name only, because I've never seen her speak publicly, about how we got in this mess or how she gets us out of it.

Denise Barrett-Baxendale came with an impressive background in the charity sector, no qualms about that, but responsible for the day to day running of a club with a turnover approaching £200M? Nah!

And this is where, we continue to make the same mistake over and over again, recruitment, recruitment, recruitment. It's been abysmal, both at Director level and the playing staff.

Why didn't we scour the globe for an elite Chief Executive? Every other organisation of this size does.

Bill opts for the easy option every time, the nickname FC Cosy is not without foundation, whether it be ex-players on the coaching staff or recruited onto the executive team. No-one joins Bill's team if they look as if they're going to rock the boat or, God forbid, instigate change.

Whilst our peer group in the Premier League have invited change, we have become stuck in a time warp.

All this leads to a disjointed squad, the result of which is made up of the constituent parts of seven different managers.

On the field, our two main forwards, Richarlison, 50 goals in 147 games, and Calvert-Lewin (when fit) 55 goals in 178 games, are our only sources of goals. Negate these two, and were dead in the water.

Goals win games, and 34 goals in the Premier League isn't enough to stay up.

Such is the lack or scarcity of goals throughout the team, that in the whole of their Everton careers, our recognised seven midfield players currently still on the books (Allan, Delph, Doucoure, Gomes, Davies, Van de Beek, Dele Alli) have contributed 14 goals between them, yes 14 goals in their time at the club.

Moshiri doesn't come out of this well either, allowing himself to be conned by Kenwright into his continuing control of the club, whilst blatantly interfering in a number of seemingly shocking transfers and overseeing his own investment being washed down the drain.

It's a shocking waste of resources which has seen the club become a laughing stock, whilst those responsible sleepwalk us into relegation.

Do I think we'll stay up, honestly no. Pre the Burnley game, yes, but these current players show no lack of effort (tin hat on here), but an obvious lack of ability.

Lampard needs to be given time, to mould his own group of players, regardless of what division that maybe.

Meanwhile, the most loyal set of fans continue to support in numbers, home and away.

So Bill, Farhad and Denise, I'm laying the blame solely at your feet.

Interesting to see how each will respond at the season's end. No pantomime tears needed this time around Bill.

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Reader Comments (84)

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Bill Fairfield
1 Posted 28/04/2022 at 10:31:22
A very sad but true assessment of the demise of our great club. I feel the grim reaper is already in the shadows waiting to steal our souls away to the Championship.
Joe McMahon
2 Posted 28/04/2022 at 10:45:26
Nothing, to add, Steve, you've summed up everything. The only ask I have of this pathetic bunch of owners and board – no matter what happens between now and the start of the new season, and no matter what division we are in – is to stick with Frank.
Dennis Stevens
3 Posted 28/04/2022 at 11:37:09
We've become a latter day Newcastle Utd, potential for the odd moment of promise but generally reverting to shite, as will be the case with any badly run club. Only a well rub club can achieve & sustain success over time. In some ways it's amazing that the Club have avoided relegation for so long, let's hope we miraculously avoid it again!
Nick Page
4 Posted 28/04/2022 at 11:45:44
Spot on, Steve. Great summary of where we are and who got us there. FC Cosy indeed. Absolute shambles.

Dennis - I’d say more Sunderland than Newcastle. I can’t see us winning the Championship if we fall, with no money and this board in charge. The likelihood is we’ll drop like a stone and never come back.

Kenwrights legacy. If people cheered for this man or believed any of his multitude of lies and mistruths then shame on you.

Dennis Stevens
5 Posted 28/04/2022 at 11:54:17
Nick, I just hope it doesn't become more like Preston North End!
Barry Hesketh
6 Posted 28/04/2022 at 11:55:22
Dennis @3
Newcastle United, even without the recent investment, are better placed than Everton, they aren't in close proximity to three of the biggest clubs in European football, they don't have to share a city with serial winners and therefore their fan-base can believe in their club without too much concern about what their neighbours may think.

For too long and this goes back to the 1970s, Everton Football Club has traded on its history and has been found wanting when it comes to choosing between ambition and financial prudence, it has often made the wrong decisions by either selling star players when it should have strengthened the squad, or buying over-expensive but ultimately ordinary players when it would have been better to wait for the quality players to become available.

The club isn't fit for purpose and hasn't been for ages, that's why we face the unthinkable in the coming month.

Christopher Timmins
7 Posted 28/04/2022 at 12:10:46
The article sums it up nicely,

Dave Abrahams
8 Posted 28/04/2022 at 12:19:48
A true summing up of how it happened and where we are in the predicament we are currently in.

I’d be very interested in any arguments against this post.

Dennis Stevens
9 Posted 28/04/2022 at 12:42:35
All very true Barry, although I'm thinking of their massive under-achievement for the majority of the post-war era, a badly run club from the top down, albeit with a brief period of improvement under John Hall's leadership. Obviously, their supporters will be hoping that's all behind them & the new owners only have to look at our Club to see how not to do it, sadly.
Danny O’Neill
10 Posted 28/04/2022 at 12:49:58
A really good article, but like I've been posting, Everton's failure to capitalise and build goes back decades, not years.

I kind of see the comparisons with Newcastle, but I don't want to put us in their category or we are admitting our demise.

We may have fallen from grace, but City, Chelsea and Newcastle? Compared to where we were, they had nothing on us. Lack of vision. Lack of strategy. Despite their global brand, even Manchester United couldn't touch us on the pitch.

Andrew Ellams
11 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:08:00
Anybody who fancies a chuckle give the below link a read. It's the responses from a lot of blues to Dominos Pizza having a dig at Richarlison via their official Twitter page.

Some of these subsequent Trustpilot reviews are golden.

Brian Harrison
12 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:10:46
Danny 10

I also read your post on the other thread saying our demise goes back even when Kendal was in charge, and although you agree that Hysel had a massive impact on Everton it didnt seem to stop Arsenal and Man Utd.

Well I would start by saying that Everton were mostly effected because we had qualified for the European Cup and a team that was very capable of winning it. We lost both Trevor and Gary Stevens to Rangers because they wanted to play European football, and not long after that we lost our manager. Thinking back cant understand why Everton dint get an agreement that when English clubs were allowed back they irrespective of league position would be our representative in the European Cup. That would have certainly lessoned the hurt that still exists to this day.

As far as it didn't effect Arsenal and Man Utd you are correct but I think you are forgetting 2 very important pieces of information. First in 1986 Alex Ferguson became manager of Man Utd after being very successful with Aberdeen winning the Scottish league at the time which was no mean fete.
Also George Graham was appointed Arsenal manager in the same year 1986 and Graham went on to win the league Cup 12 months after taking over and 3 years later won the league.

Managers make clubs always have done and always will you can have the best coaches and physios and scouts but the man at the top drives the club in his image and clubs fail or prosper by his decisions. You only have to look at Man Utd since Ferguson stepped down, replaced by countless managers and hundreds of millions spent but nothing to show for it, so not just Everton who spend millions to go backwards. Arsenal like wise since Wenger left are struggling to make an impact in the league.

Finally I know our neighbours fans are seemingly just as excited of the prospect of us going down as they are of winning the quadruple, I hope that City and Chelsea put an end to those dreams. But what angers my Red friends the most is when I say can you tell me a supposed top team in any of the European leagues who have only managed to win their domestic league once in 32 years unheard of.

Andrew Ellams
13 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:16:14
Not directly Everton related but could have an impact on European football as a while, Mino Raiola has passed away suddenly.
Paul [The Esk]
14 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:28:37
Spot on Steve, thank you
Danny O’Neill
15 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:39:31
We were totally most affected by what happened Brian. We had a team that could have conquered Europe but were never given the opportunity we had rightfully earned. And I truly believe they would have done it.

But that aside, we still stood still as a club. I'm an optimist and remain one once we get survival this season out of the way. But for decades, not just the past few years, we have been jogging on the spot.

We are still at the same old Goodison Park. Whilst others have moved on or built better, we are still trapped in the same time warp.

In 1987, we won our last league title. Since then, we fortunately added a 5th FA Cup to our tally of 4. We haven't added any European Trophies or broke our League Cup Duck.

Chelsea, Man City, Man Utd, the neighbours, Arsenal. All have totally surpassed us. I don't even want to look at their trophy count in comparison to ours since 1987.

Breaks my heart but see you Sunday?

Robert Tressell
16 Posted 28/04/2022 at 13:55:30
Danny, I totally agree. There's a few threads on this but to my mind it's no coincidence that the one club who stands out for not leveraging the new opportunities of the Premier League was (a) frozen out of the superleague and (b) is now in danger of relegation.

A well run club with 30 yrs membership of the Premier League and very heavy investment 5 years ago would not be in that position.

I say a lot on here that we, the fans, are to quick to credit the manager / coach for success and failure.

But many successful managers are average while other very good managers (like Ancelotti) just find themselves at a mess of club.

With the money now involved, the business management of a club is what really delivers success.

Brian Harrison
17 Posted 28/04/2022 at 14:15:19
Andrew 13

Apparently Minola isn't dead according to a tweet from Gary Lineker has just posted.

Brian Harrison
18 Posted 28/04/2022 at 14:39:20
As far as Everton standing still, I think once John Moores stopped funding the club that was the beginning of a long a and slippery slide. Sir Johns Daughter Lady Granchester and her Son Lord Granchester sold the club to Peter Johnson who financially wasnt in the same league as Sir john Moores was when he took over Everton. So inevitably our spending was reduced and it ended with Johnson selling Ferguson to Newcastle without telling the manager Walter Smith, which brought the end of Johnson. Then Kenwrights consortium took over and again didnt have the financial clout that was needed at the time.

Then to make matters much worse Roman Abramovich bought Chelsea and he took transfers to another level when he took charge in 2003. Very few clubs could compete financially and seeing we struggled before Abramovich took over things just got progressively worse when he came into football. Then 5 years later Sheikh Mansour or in effect Abu Dhabi bought Man City which took transfers to yet another level that even Chelsea struggled to compete with. And now Saudi Arabia have bought Newcastle and will no doubt take transfers onto another level again, although they will be hampered a lot more than Abramovich because of FFP although City have managed to circumvent away around it.

So 13 years after Abramovich took over Everton got their own billionaire owner but as is always the case regarding Everton we got the billionaire who just made things worse. And never has the phrase a fool and his money are soon parted been truer. Now I am sure he is a brilliant accountant just clueless when it comes to football.

Andrew Ellams
19 Posted 28/04/2022 at 15:00:49
Just saw that Brian. A lot of media outlets were reporting the poor guy dead
Brian Murray
20 Posted 28/04/2022 at 16:34:01
Good article but only one common denominator in this and it's not injuries or Peter Johnson or anything else. Wake up, Blues, and stop your embarrassing clapping with the toe-curling "He's one of us" bullshit.
Mal van Schaick
21 Posted 28/04/2022 at 21:18:12
Good description of the going’s on and gradual decline of quality on and off the pitch.

What I cannot get my head around is the turnover of player transfers, in and out over say the last four or five seasons.

Managers and Directors of football have presided over poor quality player signings that has taken us to the brink of an investigation for Financial Fair Play rules, when we haven’t even produced a team good enough to sustain a European league place challenge.

We have signed players on ridiculous contracts, who have been injured for long spells, or have not been deemed good enough by successive managers, and cast aside on whopping wages, sitting out their contracts. i.e. Tosun.

The board have appeared to have ducked difficult questions and have taken out shares in Teflon…..because nothing sticks.

New ground aside, it’s a debacle of calamitous mismanagement. If we stay up the sword should be wielded, if we go down, they should all resign. They know who they are!

Paul Birmingham
22 Posted 28/04/2022 at 22:41:52
Mal, very well presented and what would any other business do, in such a crisis, but in scale this is a crisis born from decades, of neglect, by the EFC board, negligence on a scale unprecedented in modern football, and perhaps football history in the UK.

The existential survival of EFC, can no longer be compromised by a board that would out do Faulty Towers on Steroids, for poor management.

Any board must take the football club seriously, at any level of the professional or amateur game.

But hope eternal, and. Chelsea can be beaten on Sunday.

On Sunday, Destiny, is being decided, Everton, can and will beat Chelsea.

They are poor at clearing their lines and Kante, as good as he is, in their system is often doing the business for their opponents, as seen tonight.

Long may it last till Sunday evening. But Everton can take them, and win this vital game, for Everton.

“Whats Our Name?”


Neil Copeland
23 Posted 28/04/2022 at 22:45:53
Paul, well said mate. We can win on Sunday, time to believe.


Paul Birmingham
24 Posted 28/04/2022 at 23:03:27
Neil, deffo, m8.

As Elvis said in his great song, but for Everton Football Club, as it stands the time is nigh.

It’s now or never, in context of this season, and starts on Sunday.

Chelsea are a good team, but are beatable and if Everton can rough them up and stop their passing plans, it’s a very winnable game, as their back line as good as the wing backs are, as a back four unit are not in synch.

But I am hoping for the second coming on Sunday..

The Derby was the taster, he smashed the RS left flank, in the second half, and Anthony Gordon is going to storm Chelsea, they won’t know what’s gonna hit them.

Yes he will smash them.


Bernie Quinn
25 Posted 28/04/2022 at 23:16:57
Well written article, I had tried to write similar on another thread - just wish I was more articulate I am glad though to see that I am on the same wavelength as the rest of you.
Paul Birmingham
26 Posted 28/04/2022 at 23:50:04
Steve, a very concise and accurate summary, of the demise of EFC.

But this Sunday, the final conflict, battle of battles on the park, and is a must win v Chelsea. Everton FC, and Anthony Gordon, will win this match for Everton.

“Whats Our Name?”


Paul Kossoff
27 Posted 28/04/2022 at 00:08:34
I suggest we all send an early Christmas letter to Santa at the north pole. Please please Santa, we have all been very good blue's this and every year, could you please give us a Christmas present, Everton staying in the premier league. We will leave out pies and whiskey
and carrots. Ps, could you fuck up those bastards over the park for once! Thank you.
Don Alexander
28 Posted 29/04/2022 at 00:22:34
Paul, I strongly suggest that Santa saw right through Kenwright from the outset and is therefore not even remotely surprised, like most of us sanguine ones, that our position in the Premier League is anything but "All Right Now".
Mal van Schaick
29 Posted 29/04/2022 at 07:18:22
Thanks Paul, we’ll said yourself.

I want to believe that we have enough to beat Chelsea on Sunday with the Goodison roar. I think Lampard and Everton could be a good match for Everton’s future, but first things first, let’s get the results to stay in this league and hope other teams around us don’t get their required results.

If we stay up, we still have to look at the cause and effect of our demise, and address the issues. Maybe it’s time to give Kenwright his name on a stand (or toilet door) at the new stadium, just to get shut of him as he steps down.

Our great club has been massively mismanaged and the fans deserve better.

Sam Hoare
30 Posted 29/04/2022 at 07:28:57
Good article and I’d be amazed if anyone here would argue that this club has been anything but poorly run over the last 5 years. To spend so much money going backwards is almost unbelievable, like a nightmarish ’Brewsters Millions’.

“No-one joins Bill's team if they look as if they're going to rock the boat or, God forbid, instigate change.” - Dare I say it sounds very much like a certain Prime Minister and his cabinet, loyalty and obedience prioritised over competence.

Eddie Dunn
31 Posted 29/04/2022 at 07:43:10
An accurate assessment, I'm sad to say.

Goodison has sucked the team over the line in recent weeks but the team is goal-shy. Burnley's goal difference is already 4 better than ours and the 2-point lead can only be bettered by a win. Chelsea are a good side and have enough quality to beat us with knackered players and reserves.

I have approached every game with hope, wishing to see improvement but, apart from some exciting running from Gordon and some gutsy battling, we have little goal threat. Lampard has left the introduction of Alli and Rondon too late in most games.

The 3 wingers look toothless, playing more as individuals. Gray always takes a touch too many and Richarlison can't play through the middle. It's a dysfunctional rabble.

Perhaps the crowd can squeeze a little more juice from the orange but I now think we will do down. Even Palace, Watford and Brentford look stronger in midfield and more dangerous up top. This squad is poor, very poor.

I also suspect that Calvert-Lewin's injury is more serious than we know. Even if he returns soon, he will be playing within himself and we have already seen how crap that is.

Ken Kneale
32 Posted 29/04/2022 at 07:55:47
Sam 30 - this club has been badly run for several decades not the last 5 years
Paul Smith
33 Posted 29/04/2022 at 07:56:00
The Guardian has a piece on the club and it's running over the last few years leading to the men's team in the relegation zone and the woman's team bottom of their respective League. It comes from the top, is their take.

I have to agree with that article and this one.

Sam Hoare
34 Posted 29/04/2022 at 08:34:40
Ken@32 I’ve only been Everton fan for twenty years or so but I’d say the club was run moderately during the Moyes era. Yes, several opportunities were missed (Kings Dock etc) but we recruited well and were mostly in and around the top 7 which was in line with or slightly better than our wage and transfer spending. Perhaps that was just luck in unearthing an effective manager but I think most neutrals during that period would look at us a club that was being run decently (though not well).
Michael Lynch
35 Posted 29/04/2022 at 08:56:32
Paul @33 I was just reading that article, and it appears our U23s may well get relegated tonight as well.

This can't be coincidence can it? The three main teams at a club, all facing relegation in the same season? As the article says - and as everyone everywhere has previously said - we have no clear strategy, and (with the exception of the moribund U23 set-up) have been chopping and changing managers in a desperate attempt firstly to achieve success, and then to head off disaster.

Rafa failed, so we brought in Lampard with a completely different style. Was this sensible at a time when it was too late to change the players to suit Lampard's style? Is anything that we've done since Moyes been sensible?

We are going down, that's depressing but not the end of the world. What is really concerning is that the same idiots who got us into this position will still be in charge next season, so we will continue this muddled strategy with no clear vision of what we want to be.

Finn Taylor
36 Posted 29/04/2022 at 08:56:57
The running of Everton is so so bad, I am starting to wonder if it's deliberate.
Len Hawkins
37 Posted 29/04/2022 at 09:29:14
Yesterday I met a true blue in every sense of the word he started watching Everton in the 60's he has had a season ticket since the printing press was invented. He also went home and away and in the bad years of fighting inside and outside grounds he never shirked his responsibility to ensure Evertonians didn't come off second best off the pitch. He has run many a sportsmans evening with obviously great Evertonians being the main guest.

His first words to me yesterday was "We're down" his main target was the players who have let down more managers than you can poke a stick at and asked how come they have failed even the most successful of managers.
He pointed his finger at the Football Hierachy and said "They want us down too many times we have been denied justice on the pitch"
Yes as I know you support your team through thick and thin but WHO honestly can hold their hand up and say We deserve to stay up. The table doesn't lie I was a toddler last time Everton were relegated now I wish my body was fit enough to toddle two new knee joints are the only things that work properly the heart up to now keeps going until this car crash of a club rips it out for good. I admire the optomists but being a realist I can't see a way out. Chelsea can't do this or can't do that is the concensus please show the Everton attributes that can be plucked from nowhere for this game and the remaining fixtures.

Danny O’Neill
38 Posted 29/04/2022 at 10:06:00
I won't claim to be any more true a Blue than the person you spoke with, Len.

But I am a passionate, if somewhat foolish, Evertonian. I can't help myself. There is no cure. I don't want one.

I started watching in 1976 from my earliest memories. I was brought up on how great we were, only to watch Billy Bingham and then Gordon Lee's Everton. Even Howard's first coming didn't start great and he was on the brink in the winter of 1983. So a troubled and confused childhood compounded when the Devil was building a den a stones throw away.

Then we had the 90s and the follow on manufacturing of making our fans subservient and accepting of mediocrity.

Well, my brother and son can call me a fool – I will take that – but I won't accept plucky Everton fighting against the odds.

So, I've seen some shite over the years. We're not down yet and I won't accept or believe it until the season is over.

Rob Halligan
39 Posted 29/04/2022 at 10:49:34
Fighting words, Danny. Count me in alongside you!
Eddie Dunn
40 Posted 29/04/2022 at 11:21:59
Danny & Rob,

I wish our players had your belief. I watched the training video and most looked depressed to me.

I hope they prove me wrong on Sunday.

Laurie Hartley
41 Posted 29/04/2022 at 11:24:29
Len # 37 - things look bleak alright but if we can secure 3 more points than Burnley from our 6 and their 5 remaining games then we will deserve to stay up – that is how it is.

It's down the players (many of whom we know have let the managers down) – and the manager. He has to forget personalities and reputations and put out a starting eleven that will have a go for him, the shirt, and most of all the Evertonians.

I am pretty sure about one thing, Calvert-Lewin, Van de Beek, Iwobi, Keane, Holgate, should be starters in the next six games. They either don't have the abilities, inclination or mentality required for the monumental struggle ahead of them.

On the other hand we have a core group of players who could help us escape the drop.

Coleman, Mina, Branthwaite, Mykolenko
Gordon, Allan, Doucoure, Richarlison

Every one of them will have a go and won't hide. That is what is required.

The big question for me is will he start Alli and Rondon against Chelsea instead Iwobi and Calvert-Lewin. I hope he does.

Steve Brown
42 Posted 29/04/2022 at 11:32:34
Iwobi has done well in the last few games and given our midfield much needed energy and a focus for a high press.

I can't see any benefit in dropping him for a half-fit Alli. As for Rondon, he also doesn't have 90 minutes in his legs.

Sam Hoare
43 Posted 29/04/2022 at 12:04:24
Laurie @41,

I'm amazed you think Alli has more fight in him than Iwobi who has absolutely run his socks off over the last 6 matches or so. For me, he is one of the first names on the teamsheet at the moment, with Gordon and Richarlison.

Dave Abrahams
44 Posted 29/04/2022 at 12:18:17
Danny (38), The last line in your post has got to be my mantra as well. Think what you want but cheer them on as well ‘til we are safe or doomed and then we can have our say.

Either way, nothing can stay the way the club is run now; it's imperative that changes are made, starting at the top.

Get professional people in who know what it takes to run a football club – not people who think they know but really haven't got a clue – a lot of us know who to start with.

Barry Hesketh
45 Posted 29/04/2022 at 13:00:06
In an ongoing debate on Grand Old Team, about whether the media is 'revelling' in Everton's struggles and its apparent insatiable appetite to see us relegated, I thought this post from a Millwall supporter gives us all food for thought.

We are not all wanting to see you relegated – loads of us are supporting you from afar and wishing you all the best.

I think it might be because you are such an iconic football club with a rich and historically successful history – and also coz you've spunked such an unbelievably massive amount of money over the past few seasons probably equal to most of the current Top 6 net spend.

But you are not alone, plenty of us proper fans from down-to-earth community football clubs want you to do well but we are not out there on social media overtly giving a balanced perspective for you.

I have faith that you'll just about scrape survival this season and then kick on next season somewhere between middle and bottom third whilst Frank reshapes your obvious unbalanced squad which don't look easy especially with the elite clubs friend known as the perversely counter-intuitive name of Financial Fair Play (which is anything but).

It's easy to support the illustrious serial winners, but what's important is family traditions, what's in your heart, and loyalty to the club you love. My lot never win anything but I love em unconditionally and would defend them with my life. We are what we are. Believe me, you have lots to be happy about!

If you do come down I honestly believe you just might enjoy a season in the Championship it's a great league. Not perhaps from your current viewpoint but it's competitive and fast and 2 games a week (and get this - usually play on a Saturday like the old days!)

Good luck for the rest of the season, keep the faith and cheer your team and manager to the rafters to give your team the very best chance of getting out of the shit. You're cheering your shirt not the plonkers wearing them.

As for media not liking you and wallowing in your demise – welcome to our world

As far as I'm concerned, we're not dead yet, and all the soothsayers in the world can predict and use stats etc to say otherwise, but until it's mathematically certain either way – we cannot give up the ghost – whatever happens we will remain Evertonians, the club we support will remain Everton and hopefully a new beginning awaits us, hopefully in the top division.

Andrew Ellams
46 Posted 29/04/2022 at 13:00:11
I can't think of any reason beyond an injury crisis for Alli to be in that team.
Ken Kneale
47 Posted 29/04/2022 at 13:15:39
Sam @34,

I feel genuine pain with your generation of supporters - my son is one and I feel fatherly guilt on many occasions for his suffering having followed family tradition.

You have followed Everton in the worst period in their whole history, overseen by a man simply happy to be in position and nothing else. He has systematically destroyed the standing of the football club and managed to change the narrative from football giant to also-rans who were pluckily keeping their heads above water.

All of this was done for self-serving ways whilst our historic rivals were progressing...

Danny O’Neill
48 Posted 29/04/2022 at 16:12:02
Dave, I've messaged Tony, Rob and a few others already and will be around Sunday. If you're around, I'll get the round in.

I'm in the Main Stand. Obstructed view, but may I'll get a half time drink? That lady in the Upper Bullens. I have a ticket for Palace home there. Surely I get a drink out of her after a season of trying?!!

Christopher Timmins
49 Posted 29/04/2022 at 16:52:07

In an earlier email I mapped out a path to 40 points, 1 of which would be earned on Sunday, tell me I am wrong, as you did before the Leeds game and that we will take all 3 at the weekend.

Make sure and get that half time drink!

Danny O’Neill
50 Posted 29/04/2022 at 17:55:43
Frank is taking all 3 against his old club on Sunday Christopher. And if I miss my flight home, then so be it. It's Bank Holiday on Monday!!
Christopher Timmins
51 Posted 29/04/2022 at 18:14:16
Danny, that's the language I like to hear at a time of crisis. Too much talk of what might be if we go down, the focus has got to be solely on staying up, this is not the time for hypothetical scenarios!
Dennis Stevens
52 Posted 29/04/2022 at 18:32:49
Sorry Chris, but until we're secure then staying up is itself a hypothetical scenario, which it shouldn't be at this stage of the season.
Tony Hill
53 Posted 29/04/2022 at 18:41:28
I’ve agonised about our fate, as we all have. We won’t go down, I have concluded. Why is that so? Because it would be an offence to the proper order of things. It’s inscribed.

Nothing scientific, of course, but true nonetheless.

I gather from sources that Kenwright and The Professor are flailing about and blaming everyone but themselves. May they both fuck off soonest, the pair of useless arseholes.

Danny Baily
54 Posted 29/04/2022 at 19:06:38
Positivity only from here on out. Love the idea of showing support before the match. It could all turn around this weekend.
Bill Rodgers
55 Posted 29/04/2022 at 19:14:24
The Everton disease is easy to blame – when the answer is much more straightforward. For a decade, we have put out teams which lack any commitment or team spirit.

And the source of that spinelessness is Finch Farm. We could have 17 managers and spend a billion but – if we turn out players who do not care – then that's what we get.

Dave Lynch
56 Posted 29/04/2022 at 19:28:59
Danny @38 hit the nail on the head with... "plucky Everton". This fucking mindset manifested itself with Moyes and his surrender monkey mindset.

Kenwright backed him as well, he should have pulled the ginger "knife to a gunfight" manager to one side and told him, “We are Everton, we fear no-one, pack it in with the negativity or I'll put my boot up your arse!”

He then should have grabbed him by the collar and snarled in his face, “Repeat after me... What's our name??”

Instead, he sat back and wallowed in his mid-table mediocrity whilst we never won Jack shit.

Tony Abrahams
57 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:04:01
Evertonians who have backed Kenwright have definitely helped allow this to happen, so it must have been galling for anyone who did back Bill Kenwright, to hear him say, “We have had some good times”.

Great shout from the Millwall fan, “you're cheering for the shirt and not necessarily the players who are wearing it.”

I've heard Goodison is going to be bouncing from very early on Sunday, I just hope the players fight, and give us a very important victory.

Danny O’Neill
58 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:15:23
I think I've hit a new low. Wycombe Wanderers fans excited at the prospect of going to Goodison next season if they get promoted from League 1.

I hope it is bouncing early Tony. I'll be leaving the house at 5am having already walked the dogs. I don't care when or if I get home as long as we win.

Brian Murray
59 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:26:03
Tony @57. As recent as the Arsenal night game, the ones who wanted change and a proper run club were ridiculed and booed. Reap what you sew, eh. One of us, my arse.
Paul Kossoff
60 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:27:53
Finn @36,

I've said the same over the past few seasons: Is Everton being run into the ground intentionally?
Why anyone would do that, I have no idea… other than some sort of takeover, or financial gain. I really think if this is the case then it's all down to Kenwright.

Tony Abrahams
61 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:28:42
I’ve heard Everton are changing the route the coach takes so it goes through the little narrow streets along City Rd, and I’ve a lot of the younger fans are going early, so I hope your flight is getting into Manchester at a decent time
Tony Abrahams
62 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:35:29
I thought the reaction from most of the fans was good against Arsenal, Brian, because although I didn’t agree with leaving on 27 minutes because I thought the team needed us, I did understand what the protest was about, so when some people booed, it was great to see them drowned out by most fans just getting behind the team.

I think it’s KEIOC AND THE BLUE UNION, who took the most stick, the people who actually saw through the pantomime villain, and helped stop us moving to fucking Kirkby 🤮

Brian Murray
63 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:42:39
Tony, not completely sure but wasn't the idea to leave en masse and then return to their seats. Anyway, I hope this supposed minority swells to nearly 40 thousand from now on.

Time to grow a pair, all the Moyes lovers. We are Everton, aren't we?

Tony Abrahams
64 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:48:12
I’ve been told some news that will absolutely delight you Brian, and “might” even lead to us going on that bender in celebration, but it’s got to happen first, and Everton also need to stay up.
Danny O’Neill
65 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:48:39
I land about 10am so should be in town for 12.

I'd have moved us to Speke Tony. Motorway connections, Airport and Rail with South Parkway. I can still see that as South Liverpool's ground that I remember it as!

Local bias, but Speke would have been a great location. That said, I can't think of a better one than we are building on now.

Tony Abrahams
66 Posted 29/04/2022 at 20:55:48
The only heartening thing that has happened to us in years was when we last played Liverpool at Wembley, Danny. Liverpudlians had to leave from South Parkway, but the real city team Everton, left from Lime St Station!

We have got a lot of roots in the north end Danny, so that’s why I’m delighted we are going to the northern docks, on the banks of the ROYAL BLUE MERSEY.

Danny O’Neill
67 Posted 29/04/2022 at 21:03:15
I'm a south city boy Tony, but I accept our roots are in the North end and its where we belong. I can't think of a more suitable location than BMD. It's going to be iconic.

I can't wait for Sunday. And then Watford. And then Leicester (if I get a ticket) and then Palace. Brentford sold out.

Neil Copeland
68 Posted 29/04/2022 at 21:03:24
Danny, Holly Park, remember it well. The pitch had a slope in one corner and the humble terracing on one side backed onto what was Allerton station then. A couple of mates figured out a platform ticket was cheaper than going through the turnstiles. So we used to bunk in from Allerton station pkatform.

South’s biggest claim to fame was winning the Welsh Cup although I don’t know what year that was. I think John the gobshite Aldridge played for them at one time, could be wrong though.

Jerome Shields
69 Posted 29/04/2022 at 23:18:12
Steve, accurately and eloquently put.
Laurie Hartley
70 Posted 29/04/2022 at 23:35:35
Sam # 43 - no doubt Iwobi has put the effort in but I don’t think he has a “dogfight” personality and it’s a dogfight we are in. From what I have seen of Alli over the years he has.

If Iwobi plays I hope he has a blinder and scores the winner.

Dave Abrahams
71 Posted 30/04/2022 at 09:11:59
Laurie (70), I’m with you on that, Iwobi has played a lot better in the last few games but against Leicester and Liverpool although the energy was there the old traces of Iwobi’s faults were noticeable and he hasn’t got that will to win that keeps you going and fighting for every ball, like you if he plays I hope he does very well, don’t care who scores the winner as long as we get one.
Bob Parrington
72 Posted 30/04/2022 at 10:35:34
Brian @12.

Well stated. I'd driven over plus Hovercraft to the game in Rotterdam, played football with the cops on duty there, driven back to England and then gone to Wembley without a ticket. Luckily found a genuine Man Utd fan with a spare ticket who sold it to me at face value.

Whiteside had to ruin that game, of course. Then, to find English teams banned from European competition really pissed me off when we would have been in the European Cup. Anyway, shit happens!

Coming back to your comment about managers/coaches, whatever we call them, I hope we retain Frank as our manager whether or not we survive relegation. Re-birth. The guy has good character and serious other skills that can redefine the team, getting rid of crap but also replacing decent players with players that fit a new team.

Pete Clarke
73 Posted 30/04/2022 at 12:19:51
The situation we find ourselves in has got the dirty hand marks of Bill Kenwright all over it.

As you mentioned, he always takes the easy option when appointing somebody and there's plenty of people who have come and gone very quickly who saw through him or were forced out, probably because they asked tough questions or suggested a thorough overall of the training methods.

Bill has just paid people or should I say, now has Moshiri paying people who will look after Bill and not ask questions. Bill does not want anybody on that board who will undermine him in any way, whether it's for the better or not. He has always been happy with the cushy little number of owning or being in control of a club in the Premier League and trophies have never been a realistic aim in his mind because he's a dreamer.

On the subject of where it all went wrong after we won the European Cup-Winners Cup and the League. I was in Rotterdam with two of my blue brothers and we were also in the game with the coppers and had a great laugh that night.

We went on to Wembley and even in defeat we were singing our heads off knowing we were gonna conquer the world. We actually jumped on a Manchester train and had a carriage to ourselves, singing all the way to Crewe.

One song we made up was “The treble was there but we don't really care, coz we got two”! The Mancs left us alone because they had won the cup and we were so on top of the world that nothing could spoil our energy and belief that the future was ours.

One of my blue brothers who was with me that day then went onto Heysel with a red brother and loads of old mates. He walked around all morning with a Juve scarf around his neck and was having a good time until things started getting nasty with Juve supporters kicking off in the streets and it all went pearshaped for us all from there on.

He will tell anyone that it was them who started the hostilities. What happened in the stadium was down to the authorities who picked that old dilapidated place to host a final. However, the aftermath of Heysel was only one of the reasons as to why we started to fall apart as a team and a club.

I personally think the board did not help Howard Kendall with his drinking problems and they had already decided that Colin Harvey was the perfect replacement. I also believed Harvey was perfect but still felt that Howard was the main man and should have received the best outside treatment possible for his issues. All so sad how quickly he faded.

We also have history for quickly falling apart after success, although 2 world wars didn't help. What we are witnessing with our club right now is due to negligence of the highest order by our board and owner.

Moshiri made it clear to Kenwright that he had money to spend at the club but not too much time. This gave Kenwright almost total control and he has been like a kid in a sweet shop with pockets full of money. Moshiri himself has to shoulder some blame for being totally naive as to how the club would be run.

So, while we need to get right behind our team for these upcoming and nerve wrecking must-win games, we must also (banners only) let Moshiri know that Kenwright must be shown the door and if he can't do it then he must leave too.

We should have a competition for the best banner which gets the message across and gets noticed. No insults but straight to the point. Winner gets the proceeds of a collection.

I'll throw my fifth quid in but would throw a lot more if it was certain to get rid of the bullshit artist.


Terry Downes
74 Posted 30/04/2022 at 12:32:31
Peter Clark @73,

Word-perfect, mate – not only hit the nail but smashed it! I agree with every word.

Brian Murray
75 Posted 30/04/2022 at 12:33:43
No more encores, the curtains is down, Kenwright.

How's that for a banner? Can't say what I really think of him as a man.

Brian Harrison
76 Posted 30/04/2022 at 13:04:06
Bob 72

I am also heartened to hear the majority of fans saying whatever happens we must retain Lampard and his coaches. I believe he came and tried to change the style as well as the culture of this club, and has admitted that the changes to the playing style he wants will have to be put on the back burner for now. I am sure he has been really shocked at how poor our playing squad is, and is trying to find a way to amass enough points to keep us safe.

I think the most worrying thing is the players the owner and the board refused to realize how bad this club had got under Benitez and because of their poor judgement we may pay the ultimate price. But you only have to go back 6/7 weeks when Mason Holgate said "We will probably look back at the end of the season and wonder why we ever worried about relegation".

That shows you that this group of players thought everything would be alright. This despite not winning an away game since beating Brighton in August and our last point away was against Chelsea in December, just highlights the complacency that has enveloped this club.

Newcastle have been fighting relegation for years and Norwich, Brentford and Leeds being newly promoted new they would be in a relegation battle from day one. Burnley have been in the Bottom 3 for many weeks so all those clubs have been fighting relegation for a long while, but Everton aren't used to being down there and having to scrap for your lives. Now reality has dawned on the whole club, whether its to late to avoid the drop, I really hope so and todays games and tomorrows will be massive.

Danny O’Neill
77 Posted 30/04/2022 at 13:58:31
That's a great account Peter @73.

The one thing you made me think about were your comments about Kendall and Harvey.

In the modern game, how would you crave for a Kendall DoF supporting a first team coach in the mould of Colin Harvey?

James Hughes
78 Posted 30/04/2022 at 14:27:15
Peter a great post and agree with it all.
I had great fun living in London and winding people by saying I had a season ticket for Wembley. Now I am hoping Watford win today, when in the past a Watford result wouldn't enter my thinking.

You're more than right about Kenwright, it's just an ego trip for him and the greatest Evertonian doesn't want to give up his train set.
There was a post on another site from a guy who claims to have met Big F. Sam at an event this week and got five minutes of his time. The post says that BPB is left to run the club by Moshri and he is out of his depth having money to spend. he defends signing Cenk and wouldn't come back if asked.

Everyone needs to get behind the team but at the end of the season we need a big show of strength to get some change whether we stay up or not.

Pete Clarke
79 Posted 30/04/2022 at 15:01:26
We are still in with a chance of staying up but the fact is that had it not been for Burnley and Watford being so shit for so long we may have already been doomed. Norwich are typically that one club who don’t have a chance.
We need it all to go our way tonight and tomorrow to keep our hearts ticking normally. Hoping for a big Watford win that sends Burnley into a tailspin.
David Bromwell
80 Posted 30/04/2022 at 16:13:21
I think the basic premise of this article is correct. As a club we have been badly managed throughout my lifetime excepting those few years when John Moores was in charge. Things were better with David Moyes as he was able to influence matters beyond the management of the first team and he gave us back some respectability. Since he left it's been something of a shambles.

The Owner, Chairman and Chief Executive must take the major share of the blame as they have all been guilty of poor planning and decision making. So even if by some miracle we manage to avoid relegation two of the above should resign and perhaps the owner should review his own position.

We the Fans should also add our call for a comprehensive change and not suffer these people any longer. It's disgusting to think that so many people have made a fortune while the Club have become something of an embarrassment building up excessive debts at a time when many other clubs have made significant gains.

Jeff Armstrong
81 Posted 01/05/2022 at 00:52:30
We need this, we need that, if, if, if...

For fuck's sake, get real everybody, we've been down since Watford beat us 5-2 at home! I walked out of that match knowing we would be relegated this season Nothing I have seen since has changed my belief.

So much shit chatted, nothing in the next 6 games is going to change the end game – it's too late, we were relegated in January.

Don Alexander
82 Posted 01/05/2022 at 00:57:11
Given the massive ineptitude of our owner/board I take no pleasure in saying that anyone financially backing us to stay up is showing the same level of reckless spending as the total pillocks we've had to endure in destroying us by reckless spending, this season, and next and likely the one after that.

Burn your banknote/s folks, it'll at least provide a moment of unusual warmth.

So inept is our entire club, once again, under Kenwright's alleged "leadership" that absolutely nobody outside of EFC fan-pages has one single iota of belief that we are a club of any Premier League substance at all.

Seriously, who can blame them?

Sadly I suspect the three or four of our players who might be marginally attractive to clubs with a genuine hope of even top eight, together with their agents, share my opinion. If that is so they are devoid of the muck-and-bullets attitude to survive this season that we need from every single long-since flaccid but fabulously contracted player on our books.

We've been developed for decades by those at the top as a soft touch - period.

And no fucker on the planet would be such a prat as to seek help from Everton when it comes to improving themselves. To do so would be akin to seeking Jimmy Saville as your chosen babysitter even after the plain facts are plain as day to every sentient being.

Jerome Shields
83 Posted 01/05/2022 at 07:11:19
Denise Barrett-Baxendale, though appointed as Chief Executive Officer, was in practice a Personnel Assistant and Public Relation Officer to the Chairman, Bill Kenwright. She was involved in a lot of self-promotion. She took all the credit for the success of Everton in the Community, even after she took up the role of CEO.

There lies the problem throughout Everton in most of the roles within its structure. It is not about performance. It is all about self-promotion and self-preservation.

There will never be any acknowledgement of accountability or any performance data or figures, only pronouncements of addressing issues without any identifiable targets or goals. There are on-going attempts to avoid being asked questions in relation to financial performance or internal football performance.

The whole organisation can be involved in doing this. If accountability or performance targets were taken seriously, there would be very few at Everton still employed by Everton.

Steve Hogan
84 Posted 01/05/2022 at 09:05:14
Jerome (81)

You have absolutely summed up the failure of Denise Barrett-Baxendale and Co. Zero accountability to anyone, and for comedic effect, a strategic review currently being carried out by guess who? The very people who should be getting scrutinised.

As a BBC comedy script, it's straight out of 'Yes Minister', that wonderful political satire of a few years ago.

You couldn't make it up.

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