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Rodriguez jets out to hold talks with Qatari club

| Monday, 20 September 2021 194comments  |  Jump to last
Updated James Rodriguez could yet leave Everton amid reports he has flown to Qatar to hold talks with Al-Rayyan.

A selfie taken with a fan at Manchester Airport yesterday afternoon and posted to Instagram suggested that the Colombian was taking a flight out of the northwest and this was followed by a tweet by Pipe Sierra, a journalist from Colombia who initially reported that he was in talks with a club in the UAE.

Sierra claimed that Everton had given James the green light to hold talks with the then-unnamed club and the reporter later tweeted that an agreement between the two parties was close.

It has since emerged that Rodriguez is in discussions with Al-Rayyan who play in the Qatar Stars League where the transfer window is open until the end of September.

It's not confirmed at this stage whether the move would be a loan or permanent one and, in the case of the former, how much of Rodriguez's reported £190,000-a-week salary the Blues would be covering. There are suggestions, however, that the player could terminate his contract at Everton and then sign for Al-Rayyan as a free agent after agreeing a two-year deal.

Reader Comments (194)

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David Currie
1 Posted 20/09/2021 at 06:11:58
If true would be good for both parties.
He needs to get back to playing regular Football and in a lower less demanding League.
Alan J Thompson
2 Posted 20/09/2021 at 06:32:23
Would he pass the medical?
Derek Thomas
3 Posted 20/09/2021 at 06:50:21
Alan J @ 2; all of a sudden of course he would, there's nothing physically wrong with would be Lazarus 2.0.
Also, as its an Emirates club lets have none of this guff about we still have to pay 60% of his wages either.
Just get him the fuck off our books.
Adam Carey
4 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:31:47
Hopefully this works out. He won't fit into Rafa's high intensity style of play and we can't afford to waste his salary, (however much it is) or try shoehorning a square peg into round hole. This will give us a saving on salary costs until Jan when we can try to bring someone in, hopefully at right-back!
Steve Shave
5 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:34:29
Lets not get carried away, he's probably just heading out to Dubai for a little break. His troublesome calf needs rest and its been a difficult time for him, a holiday is just what he needs ;)
Christine Foster
6 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:41:40
Muscle injury my backside.. he is now obviously trying to get out because he is not wanted by the club or Benitez in particular. Why the lies from the club?? Why blame the player?? This is Benitez determined not to play him and painting, yet again, a lazy / unfit player he cannot use. So it was the oldest ruse to allow him to talk to another club..he has a slight muscle injury.. has James tweeted that? No.. its Benitez yet some believe the rubbish to condemn a world class player. Beggars belief.. and still we have nothing and no-one to replace him, and we cannot even put a team out.

What is wrong with this club when we can actively push a player like James out when we cannot even make a full subs bench of kids and wanna bees.. I love this club but I am just fed up with it...

If he does go I wish him well, we don't deserve quality.. we wouldn't know it if we fell over it. Starting to get really uncomfortable with Benitez,,,

Tony Abrahams
7 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:49:07
This from a player who said, I know how Aguero feels now, because he only signed for Barcelona to play with Messi, and he’s left.

If Everton a club who are in danger of breaking FFP rules can get rid of Rodriguez it will help them massively, and especially because it’s obvious that he doesn’t really want to be here, and will also suit a manager who doesn’t fancy him either.

Brian Murray
8 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:52:15
He would rather be on a yacht friggin in the rigging. This league too much for him and he needs to focus on what’s in front of him. G strings probably. Time to act at least like a big club and target this full back in January. Albeit four years later
Kevin Dyer
9 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:54:04
Christine #6 unfortunately I tend to agree with your take on this.

Some of our fans seem to think that Rodriguez is suddenly a player that can't play in the premier league and needs to go to some 3rd rate environment in order to thrive.

A move to the Gulf was a surprising step down for Bernard, who was struggling over here but James is completely different. If motivated he would walk in as one of our best players, so if this rumour is true it is disappointing, particularly so considering our anaemic bench on Saturday and the fact that we cannot even use the "James money" for over 3 months.

Whatever Rodriguez's thoughts were over his future this summer I'm not laying an exit completely at his door. The club has been very plainly and publicly trying to force/embarrass him out for months now and this is poor from.

Christine Foster
10 Posted 20/09/2021 at 07:56:52
Tony I fully agree but this is a financial opportunity hastened by bad blood in the past. Its worth noting that it was instigated by the manager on his arrival at Real Madrid before he had kicked a ball, and once again at Everton before a ball was kicked. Financially it may be a blessing in disguise for the accountants but I really don't like the way this has all been manipulated by the media, the manager and the club. (Even the "muscle strain" comment is BS" and there was never an intention to play him once UAE became involved) This is going to be a difficult season.
Ajay Gopal
11 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:05:28
Christine (6), if he was such a talent, why were there no clubs interested in picking him up during the transfer window? Why did the Colombia national team coach disregard him for the Copa America and the WC qualifiers? Why didn't Carlo - his Godfather - come in with an offer for him? I have come to believe that for people in the know, it is an open secret that James is not fit to play at the highest level - either because of his medical issues or due to lack of motivation. It really is a pity because he is still quite young at 30 years of age (look at players like Ronaldo, Thiago Silva, etc playing and performing at the highest level at 35-36 years of age) and then you regret the unfulfilled potential of James' career. Without meaning disrespect to the football of these countries - USA/Middle East/China seems to be his present level.
Tony Abrahams
12 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:08:26
Agree it’s going to be a difficult season, but it’s been a difficult 26 years imo Christine, and if what I wrote in my previous post, isn’t a player putting his cards on the table, then what was it?

Danny O’Neill put his telephone number on a thread yesterday and I can’t find it anywhere, can anyone who saw it put it on this thread please because I’ve searched everywhere this morning and can’t find it

Andrew Ellams
13 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:15:31
He's a waste of space so let's get rid and reinvest that obscene salary into an actual footballer.
Christine Foster
14 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:20:04
AJ, the CLUB paid over the odds salary to him. Full stop, we overpaid on the salary because there was NO transfer fee, we did exactly the same with Bernard, we are now left with a stonking weekly wage that cannot be amortised by a purchasing club. If we paid 5m for him and half his salary there would have been a queue waiting to take him on loan. Not the players fault. The club will probably have to pay half his wage.Are you seriously telling me that James is not good enough to play in the Everton team? That Townsend, Davies, Gordon, Rondon, et al are ahead of him? Seriously?? This is Everton AJ, not Man City. He is a player who can only play at 80% but his 80% is so far ahead of what we have..
Robert Tressell
15 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:20:07
Christine # 6, I expect the not being wanted cuts both ways. Rodriguez came to Everton to play for Ancelotti. There's no sign of Rodriguez showing much enthusiasm to be here now Ancelotti has gone.

And sad as it is to see him go, because he definitely does have something to offer, we may only have got another 20 games out him anyway.

As we saw last season, although his stats are still good, he leaves us short defensively - and isn't good enough to take an otherwise average group of players into the top 4 or even top 6. It just means we'd end up 8th ish with a few flashes of brilliance rather 8th ish through hard work, team spirit and discipline.

If we get his wages off the books and get Patterson in Jan as a result I'd be pleased with that.

Danny O’Neill
16 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:31:28
Just caught that Tony. It was on the Premier League Week 5 thread, but here it is again:

0796 6007546. Email is

If the Rodriguez rumour is true, then I guess there really is a manager-player issue or something else we are not aware of. Injury or physical condition worse than being reported? The need to get his wages off the books? Those are questions as I don't know.

Personally, I'll just be disappointed I never watched him play live at Goodison in an Everton shirt.

Christine Foster
17 Posted 20/09/2021 at 08:37:33
Tony yes, he came because of Ancelotti, who royally shafted the club and the player concerned. He has never put the club down, never spoken an off word that I have seen about anyone at the club. Its life, it happens, but its not his fault, or ours, we paid over the odds because Ancelotti wanted him and he wanted to play for him. It didn't work out well but I really hate the way the club are happy to let supporters be manipulated into believing he is the problem and all problems are caused by him.
Do you believe for one moment that the leaked reports, the photos in the press etc were all coincidence? In my view, once Ancelotti was gone (with all the hope he brought) the club had a serious problem, once Benitez was appointed the (financial) problem became an opportunity to get rid.
26 years is too long Tony, I lost an uncle last week, a routine operation went wrong in Fazakerley, a rabid Evertonian, a life long season ticket holder who was looking forward to seeing James play, to walking into Bramley Moore dock.. the light and hope that Ancelotti and James brought to the club was extinguished far to quickly. Totally disheartened with the club. Really am.
Kevin Prytherch
18 Posted 20/09/2021 at 09:14:43
Do we actually know how much his salary is?

The press quote £200k, however there are a few websites out there who lost salaries and they all say somewhere between £90 and £140k.

If you google the top 50 paid players in the league, there’s a number of lists and James doesn’t appear on any. Most of them run down to about £120k a week, Yerry Mina appears towards the bottom in quite a few.

Kevin Molloy
19 Posted 20/09/2021 at 09:36:18
it's best he's gone. We built our whole team around him last year (cos you have to if you're going to play him), and under his ideal manager we finished tenth. He's out half the time, playing injured a quarter of the time, it'll be worse this year as he's a year older and it's not Carlo any more.
Yes he's a great great player, but he doesn't want to be here, he's always injured he costs a bomb and he'd be leaving anyway in 6 months. Let him go now, at least then the pressers would be talking about the game ahead, and not what he's up to.
Barry Hesketh
20 Posted 20/09/2021 at 09:41:37
If the reaction to a highly paid player leaving the club causes such outpourings of grief albeit for an extremely gifted and talented one then what is going to be the reaction when our core players begin to leave the club during the coming years.

Unless and until Everton FC finds a way of significantly increasing its revenues, the outgoing players will be replaced by cheaper models for the foreseeable future. Moshiri and company have gambled big time over the previous five years and have lost very heavily, more importantly, the fans will bear the brunt of those failed gambles as they see the current stars being sold to help the club continue to stave off the worst sanctions that the football authorities might throw at it, should the club fail to remain on the right side of the current rules and regulations.

It's a great pity that most of us failed to see James play live, but I won't be shedding any tears for that, it's far more important that the club continues its stay in the top division and indeed that it stays solvent.

The worst part of the last five years is despite so much money being spent, the club hasn't provided much in the way of entertainment or exciting days at Wembley or in Europe, yet we now find ourselves facing what we had gotten used to a return of buy to sell, a return of mostly chisselling out results, a return to the glass ceiling but finding that the ceiling is more seventh than the previous Holy Grail of fourth place.

James's departure will signal the end of an era, an end to the owner being blinded by big names and glamour, he will hopefully have learned that icing without a cake is pretty awful tasting and unsatisfying too.

Brian Williams
21 Posted 20/09/2021 at 09:53:38
This from one of your posts on another thread.

I unashamedly love the players, they could turn a game with 1 minute of class and do nothing for the other 89, but that's why they were there.

Today, only the teams with the deepest pockets can afford to carry them but, more often as not, it's no longer about the skill you have but the engine you possess. For me, the endless romantic, it's a poor game as a result.

I've highlighted what I believe to be your most valid point and it hits the nail on the head.

Lots of other points you make about James come across as a romanticised view of how football should be, but hasn't been for a very long time.

James is no mug and uses social media to his advantage and to send messages he wants the world to see. He's not the poorly done to player just yearning to play for his club. No room for romance in football these days, whether you like it or not.

Christine Foster
22 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:08:17
Brian, when you get the chance to buy a dream car you cannot afford, you do it anyway, because chances are few and far between you will get the chance again.

I never said he was poorly done by, but it's not his fault the club is where it is, nor his fault he got a great salary or that Ancelotti shafted him. We knew what we got when we signed him.

It's the clubs with money who have the choice of players with quality and class. We got lucky. But it turned sour, but it's not the player's fault, he signed with good intent.

But Brian, romantic I may be but increasingly cynical of a club that bears no responsibility for its own financial situation, employs a manager who can select his words better than a native speaker, and is a master of the art of saying much without saying anything at all. He is the perfect foil for our club.

Christine Foster
23 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:13:37
It makes you wonder too if the recent comments by Richard Keys regarding the club being up for sale by Moshiri is that far from the mark. Reading his comments is uncomfortable reading because you can understand Moshiri's frustration and annoyance with Ancelotti. It's probably all fluff but disconcerting fluff nonetheless.
Robert Tressell
24 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:14:21
Christine & Brian - It's good to share the perspective. Football is supposed to be entertainment and a lot of the time we get nothing of the sort. Sorry to hear about your uncle too, Christine.

Unfortunately, top-level football does generally involve an engine. Even more so when the easiest way to level the playing field with wealthy clubs is to outrun them. Hopefully we can unearth some players like Rodriguez at the start of their career so we can witness them at BMD while they still have the legs to keep up.

Christine Foster
25 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:19:58
Robert, thank you for the kind thoughts.

UncleTommy left behind a family of season ticket holders, was never backward in expressing his views on the team or manager, but loved Everton. I will cherish and smile at his memory and the time spent in St Benets social or the Eden Vale, trying to keep up with him (drinking), such a fool I was Sad loss, painful one too.

Dave Abrahams
26 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:24:43
Christine (various), so sorry to hear about the loss of your uncle, was he the one who encouraged you to write better? Was he the one who took you to Goodison Park to watch the Blues? The one who you were really close to?

So sad when you lose somebody, especially when you loved them so much. Words are easy to say but I hope you get some comfort from the memories he left you with. Best wishes, Christine, at this sad time for you.

Dave Williams
27 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:28:25
Commiserations, Christine – not a nice time for you but focus on the happy memories.
Tony Everan
28 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:30:29
It's a sad day that a player of his talent cannot be used because of fitness, motivation, FFP considerations, bad blood or whatever the reasons are.

We've just got to get on with it and make Everton stronger. All the eggs are in Benitez's basket so he has to be backed. He's here long term. The wages from Rodriguez will be recycled into signing two or three of Benitez's own players that will strengthen the squad.

Christine, commiserations on the loss of your uncle, wishing you and your family all the best.

Kevin Dyer
29 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:32:46
Kevin #18,

All last season, it was oft-repeated that Bernard, on approx £130k pw, was Everton's highest earner and that Rodriguez had taken a pay cut from his c.£200k pw at Real Madrid to come and play for Carlo. Nobody batted an eye. Rodriguez was listed at £90k pw on many sites and there wasn't anything coming out to dispute what did look appear a low figure.

Personally, I'd assumed about £140k pw, which I'd seen put about somewhere. When Ancelotti left, then figures for James's salary of close to £200k pw suddenly appeared, at the time the club clearly started looking to move him on. Last week, a journo quoted an anonymous source at Everton suggesting James was on £250k pw.

I have no clue what figures are correct and in some ways it doesn't matter: he's on what the club agreed to pay him.

The constant leaks regarding Rodriguez's salary etc don't serve the player's interest, so must be coming from the club, officially endorsed or otherwise. The only purpose imo is to sour the fans on the player and to cover up the complete mishandling of the entire situation: signing a player on terms that would make him very difficult to shift only 12 months ago, needing to then sell him to fund transfers promised to the incoming manager, then completely failing to flog the player off in embarrassing and public fashion.

Half the stories on Everton for 2+ months have been about a player that hasn't kicked a ball for us all season. It makes us look small time.

Martin Nicholls
30 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:35:12
How long will it take those of you who slag James for his "disgraceful attitude" to turn your attention to the "injured England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford" who was seen out "jumping around and singing" at a gig in Newcastle on Saturday night?
Drew O’Neall
31 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:38:39
"Carlo, get this parasite out of our club and we'll bring you back in as manager in the summer."
James Newcombe
32 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:44:13
I don't care how good somebody is. If they are going to be unavailable for the bulk of the season, then we don't need them. This club has been a haven for passengers on high wages for too long, hence last summer and the fact that after a couple of injuries, we often can't put out a competitive matchday squad.

James had a wonderful start and it fell to the wayside quickly, just like Mr Eto'o. It was always going to go this way.

Kevin Dyer
33 Posted 20/09/2021 at 10:58:18
The club's trying to manipulate fan reaction, it's apparent. Player was brought in with much fanfare, going to be used to increase our image and recognition in Latin America.

A year later ever-increasing salary reports are getting leaked from the club and bandied about publicly. The narrative this summer was one of James actively blocking our transfers by not leaving.

Er, no the club arsed this up all by themselves. It's clear also from Benitez's comments that the club had promised his transfer targets would be funded by the sale of Rodriguez, something they could not guarantee. They've tripped over their untied shoelaces here and the trousers have fallen down also.

If this was a properly accountable company, the lot of them would be out on their ear.

Going off the training video released on Friday, I'd say Rodriguez looks physically in excellent shape. Certainly better than Rondon, who looked gassed well before the hour-mark on Saturday.

Brian Williams
34 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:09:08
Martin #30.

Oi, Martin, I've seen you jumping around enjoying yourself but I'd still be reluctant to put you in between the sticks!

Seriously though, different level of fitness required for Premier League footie and having what looked to me like a gentle controlled sway!

Don't be so old and grumpy!!

Brian Williams
35 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:11:35
Kevin #33,

Iwobi, according to his team-mates, is amazing in training.

Nuff said.

Dave McDowell
36 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:27:24
Guess it's the only way he's getting to Qatar for football reasons, given the Colombian national team manager's recent comments.
Alex Gray
37 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:34:34
Good riddance. Didn’t appreciate him downing tools at the end of last season and the fact that no team wanting him this summer on top of his national team constantly criticising his attitude and his conduct over summer says it all. It’s a shame. He’s obviously talented but his attitude stinks.
Tony Abrahams
38 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:41:00
I'm very sorry that you lost your uncle unexpectedly, Christine, and especially because it sounds like he was a great Evertonian, and was someone to really cherish. Being so far away from home must be really difficult at times like this, Christine.

I'm going to get everyone to raise a glass to you on Saturday night, especially because only a fool would choose not to look at Everton through cynical eyes, and not just Everton, but football as a whole really.

Eddie Dunn
39 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:58:39
That is horrid news, Christine, my sympathy goes out to you for your loss.

I would, like most of us, like to see James knuckle down and try to force his way into Rafa's plans. Someone said, on another thread, that Rafa had played him regularly in the past. It could well be that previous problems between the two could be the current impasse but could it be that Rafa has tried before to accommodate the guy and knows it is pointless, that their two outlooks are incompatible?

For me, the problem is simple. Benitez is the manager, we need to back him. Managers have been undermined at many clubs and I think it is high time that some of these prima donnas are taught that they cannot call the tune.

The squad seems to be together, the work ethic has been grasped. We have made a good start, and in a couple of weeks, we will have key players back. One defeat, and James becomes a stick to beat the manager with.

Ancelotti, Brands et al had the great idea of getting James in and paying him more than anyone else. Ancelotti has now done a bunk. We are left with a guy who is not committed and nobody else wants him on those wages.

It should be noted that he was picking his games before Rafa was installed. I think we would have had this same problem had Nuno or Moyes got the job.

Stephen Brown
40 Posted 20/09/2021 at 11:59:18
I really wanted this to work out and loved watching his skill and vision but I'm struck by a comment from Big Nev on Howard's Way about Evertonians sussing people out and not putting up with shirkers etc! I think we're at that point!

A real shame!

Sam Hoare
41 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:03:16
A real shame to lose such a talent. And that we could never see him in the flesh.

Having said that, I've no doubt that, if Rodriguez really wanted to play for Everton, he could have done so.

Benitez is not a madman and if James had said that he was prepared to get super fit, make himself available for selection, and play however Rafa wanted him to, then there's no way Rafa would not be keen to use a talent like his.

The financial situation at the club is a whole other worry and we are paying the price for 5 years of woeful recruitment and overspending on mediocre players. This summer is the first time we have really done sensible business overall and hopefully that trait can be continued even when there is a bit more money to spend.

Len Hawkins
42 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:06:12
Name all the misfits this club has signed over the years.

I doubt their collective wages didn't come anywhere near El Hames Scower's whose injury record must get him PIP/Motability and anything else a cripple can claim.

His file should be tucked away with the above in the CBA drawer. (CBA = Can't Be Arsed)

Ian Jones
43 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:06:21
Although it'll be a pity for James Rodriguez to go, I'd rather have players at Everton that want to be here. We'll probably never know the real story behind James Rodriguez and his thoughts on Everton. I get the impression he's not one that has been touched by Everton, not positively!

He's probably another one of the talented players that pass through our club leaving us too early for whatever reason.

We just need to get better as a club and team so that we can accommodate (luxury) players like (a fit) Rodriguez in the future. It'll take years.

As has been said before, I think his overall motivation is questioned by those in the know (managers). I doubt anyone would question his ability.

Joe Corgan
44 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:12:57
Anybody else feel like we, as supporters, are being taken for mugs by both Rodriguez and the club?

I'm tired of hearing that he's unfit or injured. I'd rather Benitez was honest that either Rodriguez is refusing to play or is simply poison to have in the dressing room. Tell it like it is.

I wish I had a job where I could refuse to work while still being paid, all while looking for a new job.

Dale Rose
45 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:18:05
At the end of the day, this is like Roswell. We are never going to know the truth. Time to move on.
Kevin Dyer
46 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:26:14
Brian #35,

Maybe read what I wrote again? I didn't say he was amazing in training, but that he looked in good condition. I compared him to Rondon, who did his best on Saturday but is clearly not match-fit. Hard to believe James has less gas in the tank.

The timing over this is fishy. He turned down a move to Turkey, with us paying most of his wages, then suddenly wants to go play in the UAE? Right after apparently looking fit in training then not making a depleted bench.

Benitez's explanation seems off too, saying the player didn't feel he could play but that "we" decided he wouldn't.

All very strange and totally in keeping with the way we are operating. If the definition of a good general is one who makes fewest mistakes (misquoting Napoleon), then what does that make the decision-makers at Everton?

David Pearl
47 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:27:02
Sam, he was told immediately he was free to leave, as in "You are not wanted". Therefore he has actively sought a move. I don't believe moving to Qatar can be good for his international career!?

Andros Townsend is his replacement. Do we have no ambition for this season that we can let go one of our best players, that he can't be given a chance? In a squad devoid of quality, he offers something unique and we squander it.

All Rafa has done so far is play to our strengths. He also bought in some ex-Liverpool no-mark goalkeeper, along with Begovic and Rondon. We are letting James go! For not just the football side but other commercial concerns. What sense does that make?? When will the next James Rodriguez arrive? What does he think we are? Perhaps a small club with no need for any flair. We have this gobshite as our manager. He will go through the motions. Have that stupid fucking grin at the start of all his interviews. He is in this to try to make himself look good.

I will of course support the team but, fuck me, if he is the one in charge when we say goodbye to Goodison Park and move into Bramley-Moore Dock, it will be a stain on our club.

We better win the next couple games and have Calvert-Lewin, Pickford, Richarlison, and Coleman back ASAP or this will turn nasty, very quick.

Barry Hesketh
48 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:31:07
Moving to Qatar if it happens, will be good for James's bank balance and good for the hosts of the World Cup in their attempt to put a positive spin on their nation with just over a year to go until the World Cup Finals.
Dave Williams
49 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:31:51
If he is refusing to play, the club won't want to broadcast it for fear of putting off any potential suitors. Likewise, if Rafa is refusing to play him, the club won't want to raise concerns with potential suitors. There are all sorts of problems with players which never reach the public domain for fear of reducing their value as an asset to the club.

Football can be a dirty and ruthless business on all sides of the fence but managers, players and agents make a fortune regardless of the rights and wrongs and it is part and parcel of being involved in the game at that level.

The interested club may well have asked for their interest to be kept quiet for fear of alerting others. Our club doesn't want him as he is not able to compete physically for a sustained period so, the sooner he goes the better, and we can maybe bring someone in who Rafa will use in the first team.

Ian Jones
50 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:37:24
David @47, James probably thinks Qatar could be the best place for him. He's hoping to be at the next World Cup in Qatar playing for Colombia...

Also, great choice of beaches, no doubt a few marinas for sailing opportunities.

Sam Hoare
51 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:41:40
David, I understand a whole load of players were told they could leave. We desperately needed to raise some money.

But some of those players still continued to train hard, make themselves available and give everything for the team. Rodriguez did not.

James had the chance. He could have buckled down, trained hard, made himself available and said he wanted to stay. Seemingly he did not.

I wish he had. He is undeniably a great player. But no player is bigger than the club. Or even the manager. And if he was not prepared to work hard (as Rafa quite fairly demands) then it's best for all if he's let go.

It's a shame. And of course we will miss a player of his quality. But we came 10th last season with him picked whenever fit. No great shakes. Let's see how we do this season.

Barry Hesketh
52 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:42:04
I don't blame Benitez for this drama at all, would we prefer that Everton FC were docked points / having a transfer embargo enforced or fined for breaching the financial rules just to retain a 'star' player who is allegedly a top earner?

There is a strong possibility that the club has painted an unfair picture of James via the media, but the bottom line is that the club looks as if it is desperate to cut that ridiculous wage-bill and it would be stupid of them not to do so when, no matter how good James is, he is unlikely to propel the club much higher up the table this season. The opportunity for him to make that impact was last season and he and the team failed to do it, hence the predicament we find ourselves in today.

Steve Brown
53 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:46:02
David and Christine, amen to your posts.

Romantic? I beg to differ. Exiting your most creative player and replacing him with a journeyman shows we are in full retreat from targeting a Top 6 position.

Kevin Dyer
54 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:50:21
What do we know for certain?

* James missed games last season due to injury. Confirmed by Colombia judging him unfit when he jetted off before our last match.

* When selected was amongst our best players. When he had a bad game, invariably the rest of the team stunk.

* He was told he could leave immediately the new manager was in place.

* Reported back to start training at USMFF on day 1, to the surprise of many.

* He's talked since about not knowing what's going to happen with his future and (possibly) joked about not knowing who Everton were playing.

* When out of isolation he's trained with the team.

* He was given time off during the international break, as were the other players. Possibly chose destination/activities unwisely.

* Townsend, when asked recently said Rodriguez is an excellent player and has been training hard. I believe Andros to be a straight-shooter and unlikely to exaggerate.

* Has stated that for the present he is an Everton player and will play for the team.

* Widely reported and accepted that he was transfer-listed day squad reported for training after the summer.

* Wages leaked to the press soon after.

* Transfer failure to sign Luis Diaz blamed on James not wanting to go to Porto on reduced wages.

* Benitez mentioned numerous times that players need to go in order for signings to be made.

* Has not been selected for the match-day squad, despite being in full training and being uninjured. Other players lacking fitness, recovering from Covid, or with no real chance of playing either in the first 11 or make the bench.

* First match that the squad is severely depleted by injury omissions, James still not selected, despite looking fine in training video released the day before. A minor injury is given as the reason and it's stated the player didn't feel he could play, different tone to the explanation for Richy, JP and Seamus.

Everything else is supposition.

John McFarlane Snr
55 Posted 20/09/2021 at 12:55:27
Hi Christine [various posts],

Commiserations on the loss of your uncle. It's not my intention to pass judgement on the James Rodriguez situation, because I could only be like many others. resorting to speculation.

I will however raise a glass with Tony Abrahams in memory of your uncle Tommy, a far greater loss than any footballer in the scheme of things. I think it's called getting things in perspective. Best wishes, John.

Michael Lynch
56 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:00:20
I'd rather have Rafa here than James, although I'd love to have seen James play in the flesh.

He was a luxury player when Carlo was here; without him, he's a luxury we can't afford.

For me anyway, Demarai Gray has got me off my seat more times in a handful of games than James did in his entire spell at Everton. Exciting times ahead.

Rennie Smith
57 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:00:43
Bang on, Kevin and Christine.

I don't think he's done much wrong; this is Benitez saying before he's even got in the door, that he can do one. I don't believe a word of the muscle problem crap, he just doesn't want him around the place, end of.

What a waste.

Dickie Langley
58 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:06:53
I watched James at the Man Utd pre-season match, and his skill with the ball was fantastic to watch. He would be amazing to play with down the park with your mates, but his all-round game isn't Premier League standard. To draw a comparison, would Le Tissier be a Premier League regular these days, or has the game become even more athletic?
Christine Foster
59 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:10:33
Tony, John, thank you and I am sure when the bell rings for last orders, Tommy would be getting the doubles and extra pints in as he always did.

My apologies for throwing my toys out the pram, it's been one of those months. Today, I spent the afternoon in hospital at the cardiac unit, stress testing on a treadmill, wired up like a Christmas tree after spitting my dummy out over our manager the other week. Apparently I am not to have any more anxiety attacks... "Impossible!" I said, "I am an Evertonian."

Just for that, I am getting sent for a blessed cat scan angiogram next week, sigh. This club will be the death of me!

Well, the passing of another loved one made my mind up today. When this pandemic is through, I am coming home. New Zealand is a great place, but home is where the heart is. I know where I belong: L5.

David Pearl
60 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:11:02
Ian, l guess yes it would be good for Qatar. Perhaps he hasn't experienced a ferry cross the mersey.

Sam, he played and helped get us to second on boxing day. It fell apart largely due to him not being available. Thats his influence. With sports science as it is surely we could have worked a plan out with him for mutual benefit. Did we not get a whole bunch of players out the club this summer? Just how bad a position are we in when the commercial abilities of having James in blue is overshadowed by his salary? I'd be activating the one year extention and telling him to train his way back or else stick to the u23s and kiss his country goodbye. But that wont happen. There is no excuse for this. Is he the same age as Townsend? He would have more space and more runners, how could it not work?

Frustration and supporting the blues. Trying always to be optimstic for the last 35 years. Watching as if in slow motion as Koeman bought in cuco martina, klaasen, bolasie, schniederlin etc. Bringing in Lookman and Vlassic and getting shut without giving them opportunity to grow. Moshiri must be best mates with Fernandes, qpr owner, his mentor.

We all know that Richarlison is getting sold to psg next summer. Wonder if we are working on his replacement yet or perhaps Rafa can go get Harry Wilson and replace with substandard instead of like for like.

Oh god. Koeman replacing lukaku with 4 no 10s. We are going to spread out the goals aparently.

And on to tomorrows game. We can rotate the middle players both defence and midfield. Then we are fucked. So lets get rid of our best player. Yey. Even last season we let both Walcott and Kean go and got nobody else in, which ultimately cost us Europe.

I guess it goes right back to the argument of what does Brands do

Graham Lloyd
61 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:21:09
This is an interesting debate right here on this thread. I'm sure the 'romantics' of us (me included) feel that it is crazy if James is even 50% fit, can't make a spare spot on the bench. Equally, if he is not in the managers plans then best for both parties if he moves on quickly.

My personal 2 cents worth is that if he is on the books, we are paying his wages (whatever they are!), and he should be available for selection if fit. As many have posted previously, Rondon did not look to me anywhere near 100% as you would expect. Therefore, unless the James muscle injury is genuine, I can't agree with the call to exclude him. I was never comfortable with Koeman's Niasse treatment and whilst not at the same personal or public level, it gives me a similiar sense of personality clashes over professionalism and ability.

I guess we will never know for sure what has transpired in the background.

On the plus side. flights booked from Oz over to the homeland for xmas and planning to get to both home games around New Year which what should also be our last ever visit to GP if everything goes to plan!


David Pearl
62 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:36:15
Graham, 2 winnable games too so hope the points mean something as its a pivotal time. My bday 1st Jan and its been a while l think since l've celebrated a win!
Allen Rodgers
63 Posted 20/09/2021 at 13:43:34
Whatever happens, we still have the memory of that pass at Mordor that set up the derby victory.
Tony Abrahams
64 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:04:03
Don’t ask me why but I had a feeling that’s what your thoughts would be today Christine, after reading about the very sad death of a loved one, and with you also being such a very long way from home at such a bad time.

It’s going to be a long season imo, and although Benitez has got us fitter, I’m still not convinced he his playing to our strengths, although that’s just my own personal opinion, and wasn’t helped on Saturday by only having one half fit centre forward fit for selection, even though my only real gripe is about how deep we have set up defensively in the last couple of games, and even when we played with three central defenders.

Barry Rathbone
65 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:04:25
"And the truth shall set you free"

Looks like fear of getting injured before his Middle East sojourn is the real reason for telling the manager how iffy he felt pre Villa.

With every passing day, this fella compounds the suspicion he is nothing more than a self-serving prick.

Sam Hoare
66 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:10:36
David @60,

I think there are maybe 2 separate issues: Letting James go... And then replacing him.

I've no big issue letting him go if he is not willing to work hard and make himself available. We've already paid him over a million for the last 6 weeks whilst he is unsure about his 'muscle' being ready. I don't want any player who seems so unwilling to play for us.

The second issue is replacing him. I'm increasingly unimpressed by Brands and his failure to bring in a right-back this summer was borderline inexcusable. The squad lacks depth and, as such, letting Rodriguez go is harder to stomach. If we'd managed to swap him for Luis Diaz, who's scored 5 goals in his first 6 games for Porto, then we'd all be a lot happier.

David Pearl
67 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:53:19
Sam, agree completely. Although it also took years to replace Jags, Distin and Baines and now to replace Coleman. Also disappointed letting Nkounkou go. After all we have 5 centre backs and 6 central midfielders so plenty, almost too much cover through the middle. At the sides, we are threadbare. It's just unprofessional to have such an imbalance. I do hope though that Gordon can come through but l'm not holding my breath.

Rondon is nowhere near fit and how he got in the side l don't know. Why didn't our manager start with the side that finished the last game so well? Allan and Doucouré were overrun. It doesn't even look like Rondon is any better than Tosun.

We are already carrying 7 injured players, 1 unavailable and our best player being shown the door. This is on Rafa. Townsend is his replacement. That's the level... albeit Townsend has shown he offers something, a good professional squad player... but a like-for-like replacement? Heavily dependant on Townsend and Gray... surely we need more?

Anyway, as you say, even if we get James's wages, perhaps Tosun and Kenny too in January off the books, can we bring any quality back in?

I think in the next couple weeks, we should have lwobi watch Mikael Antonio videos on how to convert to a striker with desire... because he isn't a wide player.

Mick O'Malley
68 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:53:27
Christine @ various, commiserations on the loss of your uncle and and fellow blue.

I totally agree with you about James, a fantastic footballer who sadly looks like he has played his last game for us; it's a shame we didn't really get to see him in the flesh.

I wonder if the Red Echo will have another hatchet job story on James... not a day goes by without one.

Mark Ryan
69 Posted 20/09/2021 at 14:54:16
I cannot see that this is anything to do with Benitez. It looks to me that, if we play him and he gets injured, then Brands and Co will never get him off the books and financially we will be stuffed come January for signing new players.

Plus it means that the player can't get away either, from a club that he clearly doesn't want to be at anymore, now that his loving uncle has done a midnight flit. That is my understanding.

I cannot see that this is simply down to a personal vendetta. He was very obviously and very clearly put in the shop window during the summer and nobody came looking, nobody whatsoever. Why is this Benitez's fault?

Can someone explain rather than just say Rodriguez is brilliant, why won't Rafa play him, or why Benitez is to blame here?

Surely this is out of his hands, isn't it? Am I missing something? Does anyone actually know because surely if this was Benitez saying "Fuck off", then surely Rodriguez would go and play his days out in his beloved Colombia.

None of Europe's elite want him and he's gone with a begging bowl to Qatar? Qatar = money, doesn't it? Someone tell me I'm wrong but explain what we know, please. I'm at a loss to be honest.

Pat Kelly
70 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:02:04
The highest paid player in Everton's history, according to Sky. We were royally screwed by Ancelotti over this and his own desertion. But Moshiri, presumably, approved it.

Unfortunately, Moshiri has proven to be naive in football matters. But it's his money. Maybe he's finally got it right with Benitez. But it's been a series of very expensive mistakes leaving the Club with a dysfunctional and threadbare squad and no nearer success than when Moshiri arrived. It would be no surprise if Moshiri has become disillusioned about football and wants out.

Nicholas Howard
71 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:08:32
Club, Benitez, James all silent on playing status, reasons not selected etc

We were severely under strength while playing Villa.
Yet, James is not included(not even on the bench)..
It signals the end of James time at Everton.

Similar to last season, only with different managers, we were struck by injuries after few opening good games (all too familiar)..and the failure to strengthen our squad(whatever reasons it might be), eg, RB, CF (Rondon(whom my peer in China league told me he was on the decline) just another typical Everton last minutes 'panic' buy to back up DCL..Brands and whoever Everton scouts being shit in securing players...

Same old same old stories of injuries and lack of squad depth derails our seasons. Sigh!!

Barry Hesketh
72 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:11:06
Dave @68 you pose the question: "Why didn't our manager start with the side that finished the last game so well?"

The players who were on the pitch at Goodison at the final whistle was as follows: Pickford, Keane, Digne, Mina, (Gomes), Coleman, Allan, Doucoure, (Rondon),(Iwobi),Townsend.

The manager was unable to select Pickford and Coleman due to injury therefore Begovic and Godfrey were selected to replace them at Villa. Gomes is the only one in that group who didn't start at Villa but was on the Goodison pitch against Burnley at the end of that game, plus Gray was selected to start in both matches.

So I'm at a loss as to the point you're making.

Ian Horan
73 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:19:20
I don't think Benitez is the issue here, the journalist Paul Brown claims Nuno Esprito was offered the job all agreed but Nuno wanted James as his playmaker. That was perceived to be why EFC withdrew the offer. It looks to me James is being portrayed as the baddy here. Lets hope EFC let him go on a free with the new club picking up all his salary. Its looking more and more like a reset season. Finally if the no10 who can't be named is only guilty of txt to the babysitter ( not that I am condoning it!). Will he play for EFC again or do we sack him anyway. It looks like we are losing both our creative AMs for no financial return. Brands should get no critism for this, yes for not recruiting a RB. Only Everton can build you up to piss all over you!!!
Rennie Smith
74 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:21:35
Mark @70 "I cannot see that this is anything to do with Benitez. Surely this is out of his hands isn't it ? Am I missing something ?" - check back to Christine's post @10, Benitez has history with James, things like this don't happen twice by coincidence.
Jay Wood

75 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:29:13
The claim that Rafa has a 'vendetta' against James from his brief managerial sojourn with Real Madrid doesn't ring true.

Rafa managed Real for barely half a season in 2015-16 - 25 games.

In 18 La Liga games, James played the first two games and then was out for EIGHT league games with a torn muscle. On his return he featured in 7 straight league games and was on the bench in Rafa's final game at the club.

Rafa simultaneously oversaw the six games of Real's Champions League group before being sacked early January 2016. James missed the first 3 games of the CL campaign due to his muscle injury, was an unused sub in the next two as he was eased back into the team and featured in the final group game.

James featured in the sole Copa del Rey game under Rafa.

Ergo, of Rafa's total 25 games at Real James was unfit for 11 of them with a serious muscle injury. He was an unused sub in a further 3 games as he was eased back into the action. He got serious minutes and game time in the other 11 games.

He scored 3 goals and made 6 assists in those appearances.

That doesn't read to me that Rafa made him an outcast at Real at all.

Will Mabon
76 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:35:36
...and to add to the mix, BBC today states his absence for recent games has been due to a "Coronavirus-related issue".

What an irritating soap opera football has become off the pitch.

Iakovos Iasonidis
77 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:45:09
I believe that any team needs a combination of james style players and allan doucoure style players. Like arteta - carsley in the past even though arteta was never a pedestrian. James has plenty to offer in our team, he is by far the most quality gifted player we have but to be honest his social network activity got me off. If he goes to Al Rayyan I hope it will be a transfer and not a loan. It has become a bad habit to lose contracted players without a fee.
Mark Ryan
78 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:53:13
Rennie @ 75, Christines post at 10 tells me nothing. Do you want to tell me what happened before because that post doesn't
Kieran Kinsella
79 Posted 20/09/2021 at 15:54:40
Supposedly we were making all this commercial income off Rodriguez in Colombia that offset his wages. Was that just a load of baloney? Or are we assuming the cash will suddenly dry up after he missed Copa America?
Ray Robinson
80 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:04:19
Surely the real issue has nothing to do with whether or not Benitez bears a grudge and / or whether James is pulling a fast one - rather the fact that a club of Everton's stature, vis a vis FFP, cannot afford the extravagant cost of a player who - for whatever the reason - contributes so little over a season?

Yes, he's an extraordinary skilful player but what use is that when he makes himself / is unavailable so often?

Add to that that we already have Delph and Gbamin who are seemingly permanently walking wounded, can we afford three players who drain the club's resources for little or no return?

For the record, my own personal opinion is that James doesn't give a monkey's about Everton and might as well be allowed to go to Qatar or join the equivalent of the Harlem Globe Trotters. Such great skill but such a seemingly fragile physique. Certainly not cut out for the Premier League.

By the way, I do not include Gbamin in the same "disinterested" category - he just seems to be genuinely unlucky.

Alan J Thompson
81 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:14:13
I wonder if those who want James gone because he has only been available to play half of the time will, most of the time, want his replacement out. We do at least know we won't be paying much, if anything at all, for his replacement.
Martin Reppion
82 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:20:41
David #47 you base your argument on Benitez bringing in 'a no mark keeper, Begovoc and Rondon ' as that suits your argument and omit the signings of Gray and Townsend who have caused more excitement in the first month of the season than we saw for most of last altogether.
Just because we paid so little for these players does not mean you can ignore their contribution. The goals against Burnley alone justified the signings of those two players.
Whilst in this mood I'd also point out that Iwobi has also looked a much improved player so far this year.
Possibly a case of three players who have responded well to the manager against one who has not.
I am waiting to see what happens when Ben Godfrey is match fit, as his situation has been the most startling change from last year.
I was as cynical as anyone about the arrival of the FSW. But Saturday evening aside, the performances, and the results have been encouraging.
If we finish in he top half of the table, it will be a job done. Then with the FFP off our backs, we may be able to stregthen.
Mike Gaynes
83 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:21:28
Brilliant move by James. Spending the next 12 months scouting out the minute details of the pitches in Qatar (grass patterns, wind angles etc.) will make him an invaluable asset for Colombia in the WC. And he'll be acclimated to the heat better than any of his teammates. Others will follow, I'm sure.

Me, I'm just glad I didn't lay out $90 for a "James 19" shirt from the Everton online store. And believe me, I was tempted.

Colin Metcalfe
84 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:27:54
Absolutely gutted about this as is my wife and the in-laws who are Colombian, our most talented player by a country mile and we can’t accommodate him or as some would suggest he can’t be arsed.
I don’t particularly like the high intensity style of football it lacks creativity, I want to see skill and speed of thought as James once said there’s more to football than just run run run.
Ray Robinson
85 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:28:15
Alan #81, I don't get your argument at all, sorry.

Mike #83, the treatment rooms in Qatar are probably air-conditioned exactly the way they are in Europe!

Kevin Dyer
86 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:32:28
Jay #75 I'd checked the stats myself when all the Rafa/James stuff started appearing and was surprised the see what you did: that Benitez didn't exile Rodriguez - that was Zidane the following season.

The disagreement they had was over a preseason tour in the far east. Rodriguez had been given permission to join the tour late, due to playing some internationals. Benitez asked him to come immediately and James declined. Start of the season, Rafa starts him on the bench as he's "not fit". Next international break Rodriguez scores then makes some joke online (surprise!) about not being fit.

That's it, basically. So I don't think there's any lasting ill-feeling here, at all.

It's obvious that the club told Benitez, before he accepted the job, that James would be sold to fund incoming players.

The idea that we're not playing Rodriguez out of fear that an injury would scupper some transfer is baffling. He's been training for weeks and could get injured at any time. I can't see how telling the world that he has an injury and doesn't feel he can play against Villa, given all the fitness problems last season, would make him a more attractive proposition to an interested club.

Brian Harrison
87 Posted 20/09/2021 at 16:47:50
I really think many are missing the point, Everton football club told James in the close season that he and his agent could find another club as the club wanted him off the wage bill. Now whether there is any animosity between Benitez and James from their time at Real Madrid is immaterial. So for whatever reason James has not been selected, and while I can well understand some saying well while we are paying his wages he should be used, but the manager sees no point in including someone the club have stated is surplus to requirement and will be gone pretty soon. And James is going to spend whats left of his time here looking for his next move and enjoying his free time.

Now unless another club pays him the money he wants, then he will see out his contract here.

Neil Tyrrell
88 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:06:58
>"Me, I'm just glad I didn't lay out $90 for a "James 19" shirt from the Everton online store. And believe me, I was tempted"

Thanks for that. Mine's folded up in a box in the closet that should be marked Stupid Buys/Wastes of Money. XL with long sleeves and going cheap if you're still tempted.

Kevin Dyer
89 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:07:00
Brian #87 all that may be true, doesn't make Everton look like any less of a poorly-run club with no idea what they are doing.
Dave Williams
90 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:16:37
If Rafa thought James was capable of improving the team he would use him. James has made a career based on the 2014 World Cup and the fact that no other clubs want him says everything.
Time to go!
Tony Everan
91 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:20:03
Ray 80, The lad’s gone beyond genuinely unlucky, he’s got to be cursed in some way. Only an exorcism can work now, surely.
Joe McMahon
92 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:23:38
Please let this happen, there is a good feeling about Everton, its been a long time coming. We don't need this Tosser draining us of any more thousands for Selfies on private jets or with Bikini Babes.
Brian Williams
93 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:24:21
I wonder what'll happen if/when James comes back from his UAE jaunt and says. No, no para mi gracias
Jerome Shields
94 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:27:27
Thought he would fit in somewhere. Obviously not. Wanted out and was not prepared to join or suit Rafa's work and effort regime.
Dale Self
95 Posted 20/09/2021 at 17:44:41
Al Rayyanara, arrivederci whatever. Get in yer Hamesh Hammock and fly away like yesterday maaaaaaaaaan.
Tony Abrahams
96 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:00:01
I also get the feeling that this move, if it comes off might just help Rodriguez to play in the World Cup, one final time,
Mike Gaynes
97 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:00:37
Neil #88, thanks for the chuckle, and my condolences. We can negotiate.

I'll put it up on my wall to remind me of a couple delirious months and a win at Anfield.

Bill Gall
98 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:06:40
The only people who said there was a problem between Rafa and Rodreguez was the pundits who jumped on an incident from years ago and the supporters joined the bandwagon as soon as Benitez was hired. Who has the proof that Benitez said he was injured and he was not. Benitez seems to call what he knows and so far I believe what he says. We have a gifted player who was adored in his native land but was deemed unfit to play for them.
We played over 40 games last season how many games did he play for 90 min.
The man is a gifted player but we have had gifted players before, going back to A.Young who could hardly walk near the end of the game with blisters on his feet but his standards never dropped.
Yes Benitez's style is different but I doubt very much if the man was fit he would not at least make the bench to play for 30 or 40 min if needed.
i was of the understanding that a person who was not fit to play was the decision of the physio and medical staff who advised the manager of a players condition, so maybe they lie too.
Paul Birmingham
99 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:09:35
Deepest sympathies Christine at your loss.

Regards the James saga, only those the club will know the facts.

As supporters of the club we can only speculate but as many have said, passing a medical would be interesting as the lad for his talent and capability is not fit enough to play regularly in the EPL.

If he was an impact sub that would be potential for the squad but what’s been in the past and is now, with Rafa, seems a parting of the ways is inevitable.

Thanks Janes for some inspirational passing and finishing last season, in the few games you played.

But the club must move on and focus on this season, and embrace the challenges that Everton face, and keep on believing.

Jack Convery
100 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:13:26
The club are screwed financially and quite simply our highest wage earner has to go. £800,000 to £1m a month in wages cannot be sustained due to FFP and maybe he is / was on bonuses too. I would love to know how much in merchandise sales he brought in, though knowing EFC we would have effed that particular contract up too.

RB must have known he was going before he accepted the job. The fact we spent £1.8 in total on transfer fees, for the 1st team this summer, says it all. We can't even afford to pay off Delph as any other club would.

We are paying the price for having a club that is totally dysfunctional. For that I blame Moshiri. He is in charge or is supposed to be. Tinkering with the board whilst the team is in trouble is not the way to do things.

I always think on what Morgan Schneiderlin said when he signed for Lille - it is good to come to a proper club, that knows what its doing.

We have to be the most patient supporters in Europe. In my opinion its about time we lost our patience and started letting the those who 'run' the club what we think of their total mismanagement of Everton FC.

I don't blame RB. I applaud the Stadium building, who wouldn't. However on the Football side of things, Moshiri, Kenwright, DBB and Brands are a disgrace and should hang their heads in shame. Bad manager picks, extortionate fees and wages paid to players, no other clubs wanted. Financial issues that have now come home to roost. I could go on buts what the point.

PS; We never got to see James play at Goodison. The fates really have it in for us !!

Niall McIlhone
101 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:24:15
Good post Martin #82. Should James depart, he will be the first of a raft of players out of the club by season end. The club is in a very chastening phase of transition, and I don’t see us pulling up any trees given the quality of the squad, but I do see the basics of effort and good organisation, which offers hope. Hope, yes. That bloody impostor that bedevils all Toffees the world over. As for James, the move looks right given his ambitions towards the Qatar World Cup, and probably the least painful option for the club also, if also costly, but then, that’s sooooo Everton.
Graham Mockford
102 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:33:52
I guess we can only surmise whether it’s a player not wanted to play or a player not wanting to play.

Not bothered at all as the I’ve never bought into the myth of a great player. Aside from a very good start he was bang average, clearly injury prone and never displayed the heart required.

To paraphrase Jim Royle ‘ World class my arse’

Kevin Dyer
103 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:35:47
Brian #93 You know what, I'd laugh my arse off. If Rafa's war-chest was predicated on the club selling Rodriguez then that level of stupidity and inadequate planning deserves nada

Jack #100 I'd like to hear some accountability from someone at the club. I don't blame Benitez for this shitshow and I don't blame Rodriguez either. He missed games yes, but he had a history of injury and as far as I'm aware (and I've heard nothing contrary to this) his injuries last season were legitimate. He's caused no trouble at the club, has said nothing detrimental, not refused to train, is apparently a popular figure within the squad and is only cashing the large cheques that we offered him, when it seems we couldn't afford them.

I'd not read those comments from Schneiderlin. Makes me think of Bernard's parting comments though.

Martin Mason
104 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:43:45
I think that James became worth nothing when Premiership sides figured out how to neutralise him which they did. £225k a week and worthless? That is why the club are desperately trying to offload him, he has no value to EFC.
Darren Hind
105 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:46:53
I'm just amazed they're not lining up around the block..Especially as it took all of Carlo's fabled pulling power to prize him away from err...Nobody.

Seems everyone in the world knew this dazzling light was rapidly going out, cept Carlo and his supporters.

To be fair he was definitely world class, but so were Eto and Gazza.

Stan Schofield
106 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:48:55
This time last year Rodriguez was being generally talked about on this site as if he were the second coming of the Messiah. He was the golden boy. But now he's suddenly the opposite of the golden boy.

Similar happened with Gomes when he came here, but after his terrible injury the overall tone changed to 'get rid'.

The current golden boy is Gray. I wonder how long that will last and the tone on here changes to criticism.

Similar has happened with Stones, Lukaku and Barkley.

What is telling is the change of polarity of views, so typical of social media of which this site (despite its undoubted quality in other respects) is an example.

Changes of polarity of view, usually led by the broadcast media and propagated further by social media.

A most unattractive, often ugly, facet of social media with the associated and easily achieved manipulation of peoples' views by broadcast media that depends on sensationalist drivel for its very survival.

Danny O’Neill
107 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:50:27
Neil @88, genuine lighthearted view on that.

Firstly, I'm always uncomfortable with grown men wearing a shirt with a player's name and number on the back. I don't know your age, but that's for kids.

Second, just don't do it anyway. It's a marketing gimmick. Players are temporary. Everton are for life. Wear the names of club legends, not players yet to prove themselves in an Everton shirt.

As of last Thursday, I'm 50. I'm probably starting to get grumpy!!

Martin Mason
108 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:52:16
Jack@100 It's not that we can't afford to spend only that FFP prevents us from spending. I disagree that it is fair play when the rules still don't limit spending for high earning clubs. It just widens the gap between the elite and the rest cementing their position in perpetuity.
Tony Everan
109 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:54:16
What about face painting Danny ? I think it should be compulsory. No face paint no admittance. Reminds me of a Seinfeld episode where the character David Puddy went to the ice hockey game in full kit and face paint.
Barry Hesketh
110 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:55:06
Martin @104
Congratulations you have given the highest estimate of James's wages so far - I'm discounting the unreliable football insider sites estimation. I do wonder exactly what terms James was on at Everton FC. As each hour passes he might be on anything from £90k up to a million pounds per week.

Danny O’Neill
111 Posted 20/09/2021 at 18:57:17
Graham Mockford @102. Duncan Ferguson?

Injury prone. Never lived up to the full potential. Myth before the legend. Frustrated very often with his ill discipline and bad attitude and turned it on when he fancied it.

Joe Royle called that one spot on.

Brian Williams
112 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:08:24
Gray out! 😉
Danny O’Neill
113 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:09:54
Face paint is okay Tony as long as its "cam cream" and you show your "war face" as we used to call it!
Jack Convery
114 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:10:57
Mrrtin@108 I realise we have the money however the spending rules were brought in to stop teams like EFC, threatening the investment made by the so called big 6. City spent and spent initially and the then so called big 4 - the RS, Manu, CFC and Arsenal got nervous. When it became a so called big 6 then investments had to be protected. These clubs are a cartel - they look after themselves - the so called super league proved that. No other team is welcome - they must hate Leicester !!

My point is we have mismanaged our finances to such an extent that we were forced to use the begging bowl over the summer. Man City spent £100m on Grealish and would have spent something like £140m on Kane - and by all accounts that is ok and meets all the rules. We can't compete with that level of spending. Only EFC have embarrassed themselves by voluntarily putting on a financial straight jacket - Very Everton that !

David Currie
115 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:11:12
Graham 102, Agree with you on James not being a great player. Last season he showed that he was a good player, nothing more nothing less.
The lack of interest in him from top Leagues says it all.
Ray Smith
116 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:18:27
Stan 106

James is a snake in the grass.
He has no loyalty too EFC, plus £200k a week, if not more!!!
Spoilt brat, sooner he goes the better, £1m a month off the wage bill!!!
No wonder we can’t offload him. We’re stuck with him for the duration of his contract.
Thank you Carlo, Brands and the board, that’s why we are where we are!!!!

Mike Doyle
117 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:22:45
Danny #107] I’ll go further than you. Replica club shirts are fine for young kids, but adults wearing them I just don’t get.
And I don’t restrict myself to football - Rugby and cricket watchers are just as guilty. I read a
Couple of years ago that the majority of replica shirts sold are in adult sizes - a very sad statistic.
The options for anyone over 12 should be... scarf, rosette, club tie. Does this opinion make me an old git?
John Cartwright
118 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:27:46
The upcoming fixtures, after the Norwich game look formidable. Some on here want rid off our most talented player, albeit one prone to injury. I know who I would like coming off the bench if we need a goal, and I am not thinking of Gomes, Davies or Gordon who didn't exactly send the pulse racing against Aston Villa. Our two main goal threats are injured, seems stupid to me to even contemplate getting rid of Rodriguez.

Great posts Christine, and obviously great sympathy for your loss

Brian Williams
119 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:30:53
Rosette? Rosette?
And maybe after the match go and see that new group the Beatles at the cavern. 🤣🤣🤣🤣
John McFarlane Snr
120 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:32:56
Hi Danny [11] I generally agree with you, but I think that you are being a little harsh on Duncan Ferguson. I know we all see games and players through different eyes, but I think that in the main he was an inspirational character. In the case of James Rodriguez I'm holding my counsel, but I wonder what the reaction would have been in December 1971, if the internet had been in operation when Alan Ball was transferred to Arsenal. As I hinted a few days ago, I may wear a name badge at the Bramley Moore on Saturday, enabling those who want to avoid me to do so, I trust that you don't come under that category.
Darren Hind
121 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:39:01
Really sorry to hear about your uncle Christine.

Alas, more and more great Evertonians are passing without seeing us return to the top table.

I remember losing my own uncle about 15 years ago. I said to my dad that I was so sad that he didnt get to see us back on our perch. My dad said "He's with all the great blues upstairs now. Dont feel sorry for him. He's having a far better time than you are"

Danny O’Neill
122 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:44:20
I'm deliberately calling out my frustration in Duncan John Senior. An individual and Evertonian I love the bones off. Doesn't mean I can't call out the things I mentioned, which hold true in my opinion. Duncan could have achieved so much more, but I agree with you, he was an inspiration to many in dark times. But to me, he frustrated me through a lack of fulfilled potential.

You won't need a badge. I'll find you and get you your supply of Guinness!

Barry Robson
123 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:48:19
JC post 100. MS didnt sign for Lille.
Jack Convery
124 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:51:02
Barry Robson@123 - my apologies. It was nice of you to let me know. It was actually Nice.
Dale Self
125 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:53:51
Christine, Darren and I'm sure some others before long...We all will get to that point where we look back one last time to consider whether we supported the right things in life and when you get down the list where football clubs are considered, we all have.

UTFT all the way and past the gates or light at the end of the tunnel whatever!

Bill Gall
126 Posted 20/09/2021 at 19:55:46
Jack # 114.
You have not mentioned the beginning that led up to FFP rules
In 2003 R.Abramovich took over Chelsea and they started buying all the best players from Europe and S.America and started to win championships and Trophies.. In 2007 Man City was bought out by Arabians who's personnel wealth was over 20 billion.
Both Arsenal and Man Utd had wealthy owners and in 2010 Liverpool were taken over by The Fenway Group.
This started the bidding wars for the best players with Man City having the wealthiest owners that it was decided that some sort of restrictions had to be put in place This was how FFP was brought in, to help the less wealthy clubs.
Over the years it was who could afford the best lawyers to bypass some of the regulations, and now it is getting harder to bypass some of the regulations, to a situation were it is now hindering the less wealthy clubs and the other clubs who have since got rich billionaire owners.
I have always blamed Sky Sports who make sure that preferred 6 recieve prime time coverage supplying them with more financial aid.
Mike Gaynes
127 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:01:25
Mike #117, guess I'm just an overgrown kid, but I still wear shirts with numbers one them.

Stan #106, you're tweaking history pretty severely there. Not many here considered Gomes a "golden boy" on arrival -- the more we'd seen him play at Barca, the less likely we were to be excited -- and lots of us were pretty sour on his performances long before the injury. At the time of the broken leg, he'd appeared 35 times for us. One goal, one assist, maybe a dozen really good performances, perhaps the Anfield derby being the best. Golden Boy? No way, nohow.

Jerome Shields
128 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:03:47
Everton have a hardworking team with obviously no depth. Why was James not moved on earlier, so that some needed additions were in place? It's been another Transfer Window that fell short on competent in providing a squad for this season.

Everton limp forward to a panic transfer window in January, if James's transfer is successful. It should be or is he going to fly back and tell us he is committed to fighting for his place in the team for Everton? Few will believe that. It seems he was told not to get injured, so, if his transfer materialsed, it would go through.

Christine, my condolences regarding your Uncle.

Darren Hind
129 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:04:24
Many scouse Evertonians will tell you they didnt choose to e blue. They just were.

It's those poor fuckers dotted around the world who actually had a choice that get my sympahty.

Nobody can accuse them of glory hunting

Tommy Carter
130 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:16:53
@ Stan and Mike

I think he’s had more like 1 or 2 good games.

Please see his performance away to Villa early in the 2019/2020 season. It was truly dreadful and amongst a really poor run of form he had after making his deal permanent. And. Prior to his broken ankle.

The sooner we can get shut of him the better.

I am personally gutted that I won’t see James in an Everton shirt in the flesh.

I know many won’t agree with me. This is purely about money with the club. It has to be as there is no way Gomes or Iwobi should be getting game time ahead of him.

But we move on with no hard feelings I think. People talking about loyalty on here literally have no clue. They must still have posters of footballers on their walls, observing the game with the mentality of a ten year old.

Of course James has no innate loyalty to us, why on earth would he?

Everyone has a price and a shelf life in football. That’s just the way it is.

Leave the over emotional histrionics to LFC.

John McFarlane Snr
131 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:20:56
HI Darren [129] it all depends when the fans 'dotted around the world' nailed their colours to the Everton mast, if post Premier League days then they have my sympathy. If it was pre Premier League days they have only themselves to blame, still hoping to make your acquaintance at the Bramley Moore on Saturday.
Ian Horan
132 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:43:46
Moshiri is only guilty of one issue backing his managers. Koeman, Silva, Allardyce were all bulletted when the fans turned. I would suggest Moshiri has tried to act in the best interests of the supporters. James for all the trials and tribulations has stopped the RS stating last win at Analfield last Century, purely for that alone I thank him. He was a Rolls Royce engine fitted into a Ford escort. We are Evertonians he isn't. We offered him a salary and he excepted it. Football moves on.
Clive Rogers
133 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:56:08
Bill, #126, Sheik Mansour is credited with a personal worth of £20 billion, but that is only a small part of the wealth of his family which he has access to which is £1 trillion or 1000 £billion. Infinite wealth really.
Dave Abrahams
134 Posted 20/09/2021 at 20:58:52
Ian (132), Rodriguez had a good hour or so at Anfield, played well and made a great pass that Richie put away, he was part of a good all round team effort that day with four or five very good performances and no shirkers on the pitch, we didn’t win because of Rodriguez but he did help, was it still 1-0 when he went off?
Tony Abrahams
135 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:03:42
I’d describe Rodriguez has having a Rolls-Royce brain, fitted onto a Ford engine, and as much as I enjoy watching talented footballers, and it was a very good pass to Richarlison, but no way was it better than the finish that led to us scoring the first goal that night?

My bigger concern is that once our owners see we have got a committed manager, they can find a way to give him some money, but until then I expect us to be a topsy-turvy team.

Mike Doyle
136 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:06:48
Brian #119] Sounds good to me - especially if you throw in a couple of pints of Higsons when we get there.
I bet Mike Gaynes would wear a blue & white rosette with pride.
Brian Williams
137 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:08:57
He would Mike but he IS in his late 80's. 😳
Danny O’Neill
138 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:20:54
Well, no-one needs sympathy for being an Evertonian in my eyes.

I feel for the younger generation right now, but many of us have experienced highs, lows and near misses.

But one day, it happens and it will again.

If you were a Chelsea fan in 1985 or a City fan in 1992 could you have foreseen where they are now?

It's going to happen and I refuse to go anywhere until it does. Starting on South Africa Road in west London tomorrow night.

David Currie
139 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:24:50
John Mc and Darren 131,
My Dad took me to Goodison when I was 6 years old so that was it for me and always will be. John Mc is right regarding when fans around the world chose Everton and why.
I now live in Southern California and the only clubs that I see being followed are United, RS, Chelsea and City, Arsenal used to be popular with the Yanks but now that they are not winning they change teams. Barcelona shirts were everwhere with the kids but now the team is not as good they again change especially now that Messi has left. Lots of PSG shirts popping up as well now until they start to lose.
everywhere with the kids but now they have tailed off a bit they are not as popular.
Stan Schofield
140 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:27:13
John@120: I imagine some ToffeeWeb comments about Alan Ball might be along the lines of:

“We got him for £110k, and selling him for £220k is great business. We can buy several good players for that. No player is bigger than Everton, and he can take his antics and fancy white boots elsewhere. Nothing lasts, including the Holy Trinity, and if Kendall and Harvey struggle without Ball then they can go as well. Harvey can take his fancy show-pony skills elsewhere. Same goes for Brian Labone with his outdated Corinthian spirit, there’s no place for such romantic notions in the modern game. This is a business, Everton Football Club Co. Ltd. Let’s not forget that”.

Danny O’Neill
141 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:40:19
Living away for many years now David and in London more recently, that's always been the case with Liverpool and United and I have seen it sway between the two as Liverpool descended into relative averageness prior to the recent revival. Interestingly, the City thing has never really caught on down here. Certainly where I live, it's Liverpool, United, Chelsea and me!!

My first match (I think, still undecided as I remember going to watch us against Home Farm at a similar time!!) was a friendly in Germany against a team called Braunschweig (Brunswick in English) around 1976 or 1977. We got hammered 6 - 0 and the German supporters were chanting "Everton, Everton, ha, ha, ha"

Very distraught 6 year old brought up on dreams of the 60s team and a Dad with a lot of consoling and explaining to do on the trip home.

Fast forward 25 years. Repeat. But my lad loves the blues as much as me and his day will come.

Barry Robson
142 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:42:17
Stan I take your point to an extent about some commentators on TW. However a big difference between all those great players you mention and James.
Is they all wanted to play for Everton and did so with pride.

James doesn't in my view which is a great pity.

Tommy Carter
143 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:47:02

Who does want to play for Everton then Barry?

Can you name them please?

Does Jack Grealish really want to play for Man City?

Does Rafa Varane really want to play for Man Utd?

Does Mo Salah really want to play for Liverpool?

How about Messi at PSG?

Kevin Dyer
144 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:49:59
Ray #116 Read Stan's post on polarized views again mate.
Barry Robson
145 Posted 20/09/2021 at 21:52:12
I would suggest all the players you mention want to play for the clubs they are at more than James wants to play for us.

However that's just my opinion Tommy.

Robert Tressell
146 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:03:06
If you go from playing for Madrid to Munich to Madrid, alongside people like Lewandowski, Muller, Ribery, Robben, Benzema, Ronaldo, Bale and Modric, competing for domestic titles and the Champions League - I can imagine not being thrilled at the prospect of putting a shift in for a mediocre mid-table side in an extremely physical league.

If I wasn't a fan, I would probably rather earn money pulling off a few tricks in Qatar while the sun shines, than play out another hard trophyless season in England.

So all the players you list Tommy do want to play for their clubs because of the chance of glory on the big stage, alongside other big names, in glamour stadia.

We're a different kettle of fish unfortunately. It's like asking whether Gareth Bale would want to play for Torino. Not really would be my guess.

Don Alexander
147 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:11:54
Stan (#140), your post speaks of real pining for entertainment - and, if so, I'm of the same mind. That said, none of the three legends you cite had anything like the winsome/lose-some/pay-me-millions characteristics embedded in our increasingly feeble Colombian ex-legend.

I suspect Bally and Labone, at least, would've found a way at Bellefield to impress upon ANYONE not visibly busting a gut that their ways had better change pdq, or else (and those two would've had their effect scrutinised by Johnny Morrissey I'd say).

Of course win bonus was the much-treasured way-of-the-world for players in days of yore, and having to limp back to your car after training pitch argy-bargy following a duff performance was commonplace, according to Joe Royle the only time I met him.

Danny O’Neill
148 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:16:47
Stark but very telling context Robert.

Anyway, I'm already getting into trouble as I'm priming the dogs for a cheese-cube induced prediction for tomorrow on the morning walk and apparently one of them supports Villa.

It doesn't have the same ring, but "come on, come on, get down to Loftus Road". That's where I'll be tomorrow evening. As always, we all will be in spirit and soul, willing the team on whoever is on the pitch. Everybody's cheering the blues. Here we go.

Christy Ring
149 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:18:56
Christine my deepest sympathy over the sad passing of your uncle.
I still think a fit James is a huge asset, why pay his wages and not use him. Let's be honest there were some games last season where he was pure class, other games where he didn't want to be there, and near the end of the season said he was tired and went home, which said alot about his commitment. Rafa said he cried off last weekend with an injury, we were down to the bare bones and couldn't fill the bench. If James was fit would his pride and professionalism not make him come out and say the manager refused to use me?
Christine Foster
150 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:25:52
The reality is rather sobering, as Stan says, albeit with tongue in cheek, it doesn't matter who the player is, or how good he is, there will always be some with differing views. I once met a really smart woman in Australia, (OK I know that's rare) she found away to track trends in social media and advise those with an interest, local politicians and MPs, big business and the media, to advise on how to manipulate and develop such trends into the greater population for personal gain. I spent a considerable amount of time watching her do it and my God how clever was such manipulation. Time goes on, I left Australia and yet a couple of years later bumped into her, literally her car, a new BMW, in Tampa where I was on a business trip.
She was 24, worked for the Republican party now manipulating social media. Earning massive amounts of money.
Yeah, I know, nice story, but the point was, I learnt the phrases used, the seeds planted to fester in the mind, the methods used. This isn't the X files, manipulation of stories happens every day, EFC are not even very good at it but it's enough to make those who see through the curtain look half baked, irrational, confused or just plain stupid. That ridicule hoisted on fans who question anything negative is even turned against them as suddenly they are now paranoid!
The endless hours and coffees we had discussing far fetched possibilities are now common place, and it's dammed uncomfortable because I didn't believe such large scale manipulation was possible. She advised me to get rid of my Facebook account, I did and I realize why, that was 10 years ago. Today such media manipulation is common place, the destruction of anyone is possible with innuendo, who needs facts? (James salary anyone?) Look back a year and James IS being lauded as a super star by media, his injuries are forgotten when they are lauding him, fast forward and see the engineered hatchet job that suddenly appears take off, and guess what, people's attitudes change from praise to condemnation. If it wasn't for the education I received from a young female Aussie some ten years ago now, I would never have seen the coordinated signs, the slanted storyline, the reliance on unsubstantiated leaks, the patterns are all there, it's a playback. Sadly it's the fans being played.
Danny O’Neill
151 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:34:24
Deep Christine and I had to give that a couple of reads.

But I get your point.

I think.

The importance of having your own view and opinion rather than being sheep to the media of any form. Use them to glean information but don't be used by them.

It's why I normally spit my coffee out and switch the preaching and condescending BBC off after 5 minutes in the morning before I take the dogs out. I get more sense out of them.

Brian Williams
152 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:35:19
They're only being played Christine, if they're gullible enough to believe everything they read.
You did well getting off Facebook, it, and other social media sites are the scourge of the modern world, and only accelerate the downward spiral of common sense, respect, and normality throughout the world.
Christine Foster
153 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:43:02
Christy, if reports are true, the so called muscle strain were merely a means of covering the fact that James had a ticket booked on a flight to the UAE probably first class at the clubs expense so desperate are they to unload him, if it wasn't for a fan getting a selfie we would never have known and accepted what Benitez said.
James in my knowledge has never uttered a single bad word on the club, he has been professional. The club on the other hand as well as the manager, have played all of this using unsolicited media reports, selective comments in pressers, all towards engineering the player out. No business behind closed doors was it?
No matter what James would or could have said would have been used against him anyway. He kept his own counsel. I don't blame him.
Kevin Dyer
154 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:52:52
Christine #150 Very interesting read and on the money. I know people a generation (maybe two!) younger than myself, in their 20s and 30s that get all their news off social media platforms.

People like the woman you talk about are very smart and the algorithms they develop are finely tuned. I read last year that the algorithm underpinning Facebook is so sophisticated that it can predict a person's reactions with a higher success rate than that person's friends after something like 100 "likes" and beats a spouse after something like 500. I may be (highly likely) wrong on those exact numbers, but they are not large and probably constitute a few weeks, or months FB activity by the average user.

Steve Shave
155 Posted 20/09/2021 at 22:55:31
Some reports saying a deal has been made with a Qatari side, €8M fee. I seriously doubt that, I would be pretty happy if it were true though. I suspect its much more likely to be a season long loan (to a point where he becomes a free agent) where we pick up some of his wages but get a low loan fee.
Chris Leyland
156 Posted 20/09/2021 at 23:33:38
Christine, “James in my knowledge has never uttered a single bad word on the club, he has been professional”
Im not having that he’s been professional at all. He fecked off and abandoned us at the end of last season and flew off to Columbia to try to ensure he got into their Copa America squad when we needed him on the pitch to try to get into Europe, when we need him prioritising the club who pays his wages. He was on his Twitch social media platform this season stating there he didn’t even know who we were playing. That wasn’t manipulated and put out by the club to discredit him, it was him live and in the flesh actually saying it. To my knowledge, he hasn’t been to a single game this year to cheer on his team mates.
None of this can in any way be described as “professional”
Christine Foster
157 Posted 20/09/2021 at 23:38:57
Chris, it works both ways. Tell me the club has dealt with him professionally and not painted him badly and I would say you had a point.
Jay Harris
158 Posted 20/09/2021 at 23:52:16
Christine really sorry to hear about your uncle. He sounds like a man I could have some great "blue" conversations about.

I too love the technical and skillful side of the game but I am afraid that now harks back to the HArvey, Kendall, BAll and Alex Young and Roy Vernon days.

Athleticism has been coming for years and is now one of the main attributes of the game. Compare the muscle bound speedsters of todaywith the artful dodgers of yesteryear.

As you also rightly point out the influence of the media is far too great now and I get particularly annoyed when I hear these so called pundits saying certain managers should be sacked and certain players should go to MAn U or the other shower to better their careers.

One the subject of James I can see both sides of the argument. A player with skill and a brain who can dictate a game but also a "spoiled" superstar who has been disillusioned by the fact he is no longer relevant.

Personally I think he took his bat and ball home when he realized we were not going to make Europe and he didnt like how physical the Prem was. Then his "father" figure abandoned him and left him high and dry in a place he didnt want to be.

We have to think of the club here and he had opportunities to go to other teams of good standing but could not convince himself it was worth dropping his wages for.Now it looks like Qattar is his only option to get a game and rake in the money he looks like going for it.

A great shame all round but it is inevitable in todays "sky" football.

Don Alexander
159 Posted 20/09/2021 at 23:57:55
Christine, I add my sympathies on your sad loss.

Moving on to the comparatively miniscule business of "our" James and the manipulations of social media by devious bastards I have to say I've never ever relied on it to inform my opinions. After all, they were mostly in support of Brexit, Trump, BoJo and other such catastrophes and as such I dismissed all of them.

What I rely upon is what I see and hear from people in person. Thus I know that Brexit is a really bad idea for the UK, and that Trump and Johnson are lying, self-centred clueless bastards devoid of concern for anything but themselves, including World Peace and the Environment.

And no, I won't here make a comparison between them and Kenwright, because this is a James thread.

Since he got here James has shown himself to be able to spray cross-pitch passes around at will, usually to our left wing. He's also played a few brilliant passes at close quarters that've led to goals. And yes, he's scored six times too. Unfortunately he's never yet chosen to try to win the ball and he's given up possession way more often than the few occasions he's displayed something laudable.

What that says to me is that "something laudable" these days is propelled to "genius" by many of us fans, and players (especially on the left wing) who've had decades of near zero expectation of a good pass/play/goal.

Which is quite sad really.

If only we could identify who's been responsible for such low standards in all that time?

David Pearl
160 Posted 21/09/2021 at 00:56:15
And so its now being reported that Everton will be paying half his wages. Just like we gave Walcott away for nothing via a loan and paid half his wages too. We have finally rid of Sandro, Walcott, Besic, Bolasie, Kean... do we really need to agree to this deal? Are we that desperate to get shut of a quality squad member? How he could have helped us into Europe but we don't want that hey. The fat spanish controller would rather we play out the next few months with Gray, Townsend and Gordon to perhaps keep saving for that elusive right back. An already thredbare squad weakened further. More Brands gemius. If the Qatari club want him how about they pay his salary, heaven forbid an actual transfer fee. Paying half his salary and he's not even here. The mind boggles. In comes Gray and Townsend... out goes Kean and James. How have the board allowed this shit show to happen. I'm guessing the £50 mil in paying off faiked managers didn't help.
Nicholas Ryan
161 Posted 21/09/2021 at 01:27:35
There is not and never has been, any doubt, that James Rodriguez is a fabulously talented player; but so were Andy van der Meyde, Mario Balotelli and Billy Kenny [remember him?!].

Long-lasting success in professional sport, requires more than just talent. Physical robustness, great athleticism, clarity of thought and an iron will, are just as necessary; the absence of any one of these factors, may mean, that the player falls just short.

I suspect, that a combination of slight physical and emotional frailty, means that the world has never seen and never will see, the very best of James.

Benitez has a clear vision of what he wants; a high-energy, hard-running, swift-transitioning team that tackles relentlessly. That is not the way James plays and he will be a 'fish out of water' in such a team. That is not anyone's fault, it's just the way it is.

So, the time has come to say 'Adieu' and wonder wistfully, about what might have been.

Mike Gaynes
162 Posted 21/09/2021 at 01:31:24
David, reported by whom?
Mike Gaynes
163 Posted 21/09/2021 at 01:49:26
Nicholas, I don't think it's the least bit proper to compare James to two players with career-destroying drug addictions and one with disciplinary problems, suspensions and a dozen red cards on his record. James has displayed none of that kind of behavior, and placing him in that company is far, far off target.
Bob Parrington
164 Posted 21/09/2021 at 02:35:24
Stan @106 . Hooray! Why not say it as it is, mate. Great post.

Christine Foster - Just started on this thread so please forgive the delay in comment. Sorry to hear the news of your uncle Tommy. Also, look after yourself in regard to the anxiety attacks. Hard to do so as an Evertonian, of course. Keep a good bottle of single malt close at hand - 'the cure-all' ha ha!

Ed Prytherch
165 Posted 21/09/2021 at 03:47:54
Life on Mars? Objectivity on TW? Thanks Christine and Stan for giving me hope.
Kieran Kinsella
166 Posted 21/09/2021 at 03:54:55
Mike 163

I was just preparing an article titled James is the bastard son of Stalin and Judas Iscariot when I saw your post. Do you mean to say James is a technicality skilled player with a troublesome calf and a low pain threshold? Surely he’s Frankenstein’s monster and we should chase him out with pitchforks? Or are we seeing some hyperbole from posters like Nicholas?

Darren Hind
167 Posted 21/09/2021 at 05:09:57
"No one needs sympathy for being an Evertonian in my eyes" . I guess you need a sense of humour to understand the comment - Never funny when you have to explain it

It's a privilege to be an Evertonian. I have seen people go to extraordinary lengths and costs to follow this team. The only Evertonians I feel sorry for are the ones who complain about having to get up in the middle of the night to watch a game, or those who constantly bleat about the cost of going to the occasional game.

These things are part and parcel. I feel far more sympathy for those who cant afford it full stop,

Bobby Mallon
168 Posted 21/09/2021 at 06:02:49
This all boils down to the fact that Rafa hates James.
Christine Foster
169 Posted 21/09/2021 at 06:38:48
Unfortunately when James signed, exactly a year ago (important?) No transfer fee was involved but James was on a reported 215k per week. A confidentiality agreement was set in place between the two clubs, without disclosure to others, but money did change hands to cover portions of the players salary. It was also reported that he took a significant cut to help both RM and Everton reach a deal.
Negotiations then took place regarding salary money and this is were it gets murky.
One suspects reasonably that a deal was struck between both clubs to pay half his wages each for the remainder of his RM contract, meaning after one year Everton ould have to pick up the full cost of the 2nd year which just happens to be around the start of September and that means the desire to get him off the books with haste. All about the money, Benitez would have known.. it would certainly have been discussed prior to his appointment and once the club knew Benitez didn't want him, the club wanted rid before his cost doubled. Supposition? Of course, but sadly it fits.

What is clear, irrespective of timing, FFP would have clobbered us even with Ancelotti on board, nothing has changed so why the sudden shock and horror at FFP?

Benjamin Dyke
170 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:24:10
I'd take 2 or 3 Grays for 1 James and in amongst all the bollocks written above this is the main thing.
Kevin Dyer
171 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:44:39
Christine #169 I'd not considered that possibility (that Madrid would be part-paying James's salary for what would have been the final year of his contract with them, but yes, that would explain the sudden rush to get him out the door. It's exactly the stupidity and short-sightedness I'd expect from this club (Bramley Moore project excepted).
Kevin Dyer
172 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:48:51
Ben #170 Before disregarding all the "bollocks" written above, maybe consider that Gray has played 5 league games for Everton so far, so maybe a bit early to be commissioning a new statue outside the ground? Also, those of us remembering back 12 months would recall that James was putting in fantastic performances at this stage of last season.

Sarcasm aside, Gray has made a great start and is looking like a fantastic buy and I hope he can maintain those levels for the whole season.

Benjamin Dyke
173 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:13:11
I know Kevin! And I don't mean Gray is some kind of wonder-kid. For all I know he could crash and burn tomorrow, it's just the financial realities have to outweigh everything else here and it was hard trudging through all the anti Benitez, James is a badly treated mega god romantic nonsense.
Tony Abrahams
174 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:18:50
After reading that post Christine, I was wondering did you ask your Aussie mate did she have any scouse DNA in her bloodline, and possibly a great, great, GREAT uncle called Cyril!
Kevin Dyer
175 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:46:48
Benjamin #173 Oh I agree totally re: the finances involved. Bringing in players on fee transfers or "bargain" low fees (see: Bernard, Rodriguez and Sandro) have bitten us on the arse to varying degrees. Let's hope that some sense was used with the deals for Gray and Townsend, in terms of wages offered.

Throwing big money at players to convince them to come to Everton is a terrible strategy and it appears we've been taken for mugs on several occasions.

I think, as Stan suggested further up that polarized views on the situation can be safely ignored as they are going to be emotionally-driven.

Denis Richardson
176 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:47:03
Shame it didn’t work out as he’s a class player but life goes on.

End of the day, like it or not, IMO the manager should get 100% say in who he wants. If James doesn’t fit due to Benitez not wanting him or he’s just too expensive, either way we need to part ways.

If we get him off the books I imagine we can sign 1-2 players in Jan. Hopefully they can join beginning of Jan and not end….

Get the saga over with and move on.

Ray Roche
177 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:53:29
Christine, that ‘supposition’ of yours would also possibly explain Nuno Espirito failure to agree to come here. It’s reported that he wanted to build a team around James, but if he knew that James would be out of the door after twelve months then that, and a lack of money, would make him think twice.
Bill Gienapp
178 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:54:44
If I had my way, James would stay and Benitez would figure out how to incorporate him into the squad... but I'm also weary of this whole saga and, sadly, it seems as if the cleaner and more likely resolution is if he simply moves on. So be it.
Kevin Dyer
179 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:57:03
Denis #176 those players will be greatly needed. Let's hope Brands bins his "no value in the winter market" spiel, as arguably his signings during the summer market have been a mixed bag as regards fees/wages.
Brian Harrison
180 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:28:50
Kevin 179

I read a piece yesterday about our FFP position and the journalist writing the piece suggested with our position with FFP and the building of the new stadium, he believed it will be possibly 3 years before Everton can spend decent money on transfers. So I don't think it matters what Brands thinks of January window signings the likely scenario for the next few windows will be similar in financial terms to our signings this summer.

Frank Crewe
181 Posted 21/09/2021 at 11:32:02
Get him off the books and use some of his wages to sign Serge Aurier at right back if he is still a free agent.
Denis Richardson
182 Posted 21/09/2021 at 11:33:33
Kevin 179,

Certainly hope we can get more legs in. Personally I think getting the three we did for £1.7m was amazing.

If we can get the Scottish RB in jan, I’ll be very happy.

Justin Doone
183 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:11:37
Sadly once Carlo departed this seemed inevitable.

He's a top class player, sadly for us one of only a few we have had at the club over the last two decades. Not getting to see him play live for us is gutting.

Sadly for him, the Premier league is more physically demanding than he probably realised. Still he graced Goodison Park with some wonderful goals, assists and general good all round play.

I believe now we have some pacey wingers James would benefit us more with his vision and range of passing. Sadly it appears Rafa disagrees.

I wish Carlo was still here, other's may disagree. But he made me believe we could achieve great things, slowly but surely we were progressing.

I agree financially and for the new managers plans to be given a chance James is probably best elsewhere. But I can’t help feeling he would be best seeing out his final year with us. Its not as if we can bring in anyone else.. or is it?

Brian Wilkinson
184 Posted 21/09/2021 at 17:28:25
If we are so desperate to get rid,and some on here say keep hold, if anyone knows our cash position, and need to offload, it is Carlo.

He could screw us big time and get a good deal for James, yet he has no interest of taking James to Madrid.

You need to ask yourselves why Carlo has not tried to get James at Madrid.

None of us know if it is the player, the club, the Manager, were the issue with James is, me personally, My money is on him staying put at Everton, and putting his feet up, until the January window, and turning down the chance to move before then.

Will Mabon
185 Posted 21/09/2021 at 18:07:56
Christine @ 150,

interesting post. In the context of this thread, your words have stood without accusation of conspiratorial or paranoiac content.

I would add that things are far, far advanced today, and hugely interwoven, entrenched and centralized. I'm sure your friend/acquaintance would attest, were you to share coffee today.

People would do well to bear this in mind across the full breadth of events and experiences in life.

Robert Tressell
186 Posted 21/09/2021 at 18:50:52
Brian @184, it's because Real already have, in Asensio, a very talented left footer who is often injured. They also have Hazard, Bale who are also not without injury problems and Vinicius and Rodrygo who are probably the future of the club along with Reinier on loan at Dortmund. To put it another way, they don't need him or want him which is why they gave him away in the first place.
Christine Foster
187 Posted 21/09/2021 at 23:52:53
After tonight's exploits at QPR, it's worth noting that, once James goes, the club will not have a creative No 10.

How can we be in such a mess that we are trying desperately to offload the best / only creative midfielder player we have yet put out a team of the sort of quality that would look more at home in the Championship?

I find it staggering, no matter what your personal thoughts on James, that we are crying out for quality, have just been turned over by QPR, that we are even contemplating moving him on... Why?

I can hardly blame James in a way; if he was playing tonight, look what he would have to contend with: Iwobi, Kenny, Gordon, Rondon... never mind the opposition.

Brian Wilkinson
188 Posted 22/09/2021 at 01:46:42
Christine, you think that is the only problem if we let James go.

A couple of months ago, we had a great goalkeeper in Olsen. Pickford was at the top of his game when he came back into the team. He had to be, because Olsen hardly put a foot wrong. We failed to sign him and instead picked up in my opinion, a very poor goalkeeper; Virginia and Olsen are head and shoulders above him.

Then at left-back, we had Small and Nkounkou pushing Digne. One has since left, while we allowed Nkounkou to go out on loan, so now we have to plug the left-back, should Digne pick up a knock, or ban.

Had we kept hold of Olsen and Nkounkou, they could have both come in tonight and offered excellent cover.

We have been unlucky to have 4 key players out at the same time, but surely Simms should at worst be given some minutes, to cover for Rondon's lack of fitness, until he is up to speed.

So James leaving as well is weakening the team further, but I do not know the ins and out of James situation and who is to blame.

All I do know is two players should have been in the team tonight, one to give Digne a rest, the other cover for Pickford. Sadly, neither are at the club.

Barry Hesketh
189 Posted 22/09/2021 at 11:11:08
Fabrizio Romano, roughly 20 minutes ago:

James Rodriguez joins Al Rayyan from Everton, agreement reached and confirmed! Official teaser video already released from Qatari club – salary payment agreed with #EFC board. Flag of QatarFlag of Colombia #JamesRodriguez

Medical already completed. James now set to leave European football.

Peter Neilson
190 Posted 22/09/2021 at 11:28:20
Reported loan deal for E8m until end of the season when his contract will expire.
Laurent Blanc the manager of the footy team. But they are a multi sports club also covering basketball, volleyball, handball, athletics, table tennis and swimming, so he's now got a number of options.
Kim Vivian
191 Posted 22/09/2021 at 11:28:30
So James has gone. Agreement completed on move to Qatar. Shame we never saw him play for the crowd.
Barry Jones
192 Posted 22/09/2021 at 13:41:17
I have never read so much nonsense in one thread about such an overrated, unmotivated, lazy (albeit talented) player. He is so good that teams from all over the planet are scrambling to sign him (not). Benitez is no different from any other quality, pragmatic coach with this decision. Being brilliant for one minute and absent for 89 does not work in ANY level of football.

I don't think anyone has even mentioned the effect that it has on the other 9 outfield players when they believe they are carrying someone for the entire game. Further, how does someone like Seamus feel when James admits he has no idea who the team is playing any given weekend.

This is a solid decision, football and finance wise, lets move on.

Jay Harris
193 Posted 22/09/2021 at 15:28:06
There is no doubting JAmes contribution when he is fit and motivated but there is a reason he missed the last part of last season and the Columbian coach declared him unfit to play for them.

He has been injury prone for years. Why did Real MAdrid let him go and no other decent quality clubs try to sign him.

For whatever reason he is now lost to top level football but will still be a very rich man.

Good luck to him and lets use the savings to reinforce one of the worst squads in EFC history.

Phil Smith
194 Posted 02/10/2021 at 03:06:49
See he missed the first game. And so it begins again...

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