Manchester United 3 - 1 Everton

Everton travel to Old Trafford this evening to take on Manchester United in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup.

Amadou Onana is available for selection after his one-match suspension, while Patterson is out for the next 6 weeks, while Isaac Price, Tom Cannon, and Stan Mills were all back with the U21s, playing West Ham in Southport tonight. 

Calvert-Lewin suffered 'some fatigue' during the big defeat to Brighton on Tuesday and is not risked for the full game but is available from the bench.  

Everton got things going but Rashford was soon testing Onanaa down the left, the Everton man putting in an excellent tackle. Iwobi then had to win the ball back and Gray advanced only to lose the ball in a crowd. 

Man Utd then scored in only their second attack, Rashford playing in a low cross for Anthony to convert sliding in at the far post with Pickford caught out  badly by the ball played across him.

A dreadful clearance by Pickford was jumped on by Martial and lashed inches wide as Everton looked to implode. But the Blues tried to play their game, Coady with a little too adventurous ball forward to Coleman. 

Article continues below video content

It broke down again but Everton's defence handled the counter better this time and tried again to play the ball forward, albeit far too slowly, but at least they had some possession. Iwobi tried to advance but passed it straight to Casemmiro and the Red Devils swarmed again. 

Everton were surprisingly given space to advance again and Gray looked like he had scored but it hit the post, De Gea's back and then behind into the side netting. The corner seemed to be cleared but Everton came back with great work from Onana and somehow Coady converted after Maupay's brilliant rescue shot along the goalline that  De Gea tried and failed to save by the post with his legs... Remarkable!

The Blues tried to build slowly again, and seemed to be doing well until Onana gave it up very cheaply and Martial stormed forward, Pickford incredibly saving the low shot this time, and the Blues clearing the corner. 

Two more Man Utd shots had to be blocked before Everton could move the ball forward again but any pace was completely lacking. Onana was sandbagged by three United players after trying to give the ball away and he was caught by Casemiro. 

More slow and pointless Blues possession went nowhere but at least denied the home side the ball. They won it back only to give it away again in midfield, but recovered this time. Another painfully slow attack moved forward until Mykolenko overhit his through ball way too hard. 

Gray was fouled by Casemiro as he looked to advance. Godfrey and Rashford had a little flare-up after wrestling over the touch-line. But the Blues gave it away yet again until Fernandez put in a nasty foul on Onana after he stole the ball, and was booked.

There was some desperate Blues defending until they could break but Gray could not do anything with the ball and Iowbi gave it away to Rashford and he got forward to rasp in a shot that Pickford had to parry away. 

Everton attacked again through Gray with Mykolenko overlapping well and crossing in and Coleman set up Maupay but he declined to shoot and lost the ball.

Another Man Utd attack almost came close to creating a chance through Varane but the ball was cleared away. Coleman was bizarrely playing right winger for the out-ball, mistiming his run.  

The Reds worked another attack and this time Eriksen came so close with a superb shot that curled inches over the top left corner. The pace of the game briefly slowed as Man Utd looked for an opening and when they did, the Blues forced a turnover and advanced a bit faster but Gray mishit his pass to end the adventure. 

Rashford worked another opportunity for a shot but it was blocked and Gray was the outball this time until Maupay was fouled. But Everton played the free-kick sideways and backwards, looking for trouble until they gave up the turnover. 

Into 2 minutes of added time, and Everton kept putting themselves under pressure, Martial forcing a corner that Shaw took and Tarkowski headed clear. But still Man Utd were invited to work it around again, as Everton failed to get the ball upfield.  

A breathless first half, a real cup-tie, but what were Everton doing in the first 5 minutes?

The game was restarted by the home side who staged another threatening attack straight away but Everton stalled them, then broke with Iwobi leading the charge but Malacia chasing him down with a scything tackle from the side, getting the ball and very heavily damaging Iwobi's ankle. But apparently no foul. Iwobi left in agony on the stretcher, Doucouré (not ready) on in his place after 3 minutes more.

After the restart Rashfrd bamboozled Coleman and Coady poked the cross into his own net. Disaster.

With the lead theirs again, the home side looked to attack more confidently, forcing Everton to defend in numbers, Rashford a massive and persistent threat. Onana produced a fantastic tackle on martial but it was only a brief respite before the Blues were defending again, pretty solidly.

Pickford was forced to kick long but Maupay could not hold it up and Man Utd came back to win a corner that Everton cleared. Godfrey then caught Rashord badly and another perilous attack picked and probed for a way through the blue line. 

Man Utd were now looking to exert a press that Everton broke with Doucoure but he just did not want to shoot, Coleman's cross coming in but Mykolenko's shot was blocked.

Doucouré blocked Rashford, setting up a dangerous free-kick with Fernades hitting a tremendous shot that Pickford palmed over. The corner was worked around until Doucoure was sucked into another foul on Rashford and a booking. Maupay (who had played well) was replaced by Calvert-Lewin.

Coleman did well to stop Garanoco. Then a strange moment when Calvert-Lewin seemed to have a chance to get past De Gea outside his area but was far too tepid.  But Gray got hold of the ball from Coleman and got to the byline, crossing in for Calvert-Lewin to bundle the ball into the net. But Gray was adjudged marginally offside by the VAR. 

Everton pushed forward again but Gana tried a ridiculous shot from 35 yards, miles over. Gordon and McNeil entered the fray for the final frenetic 10 minutes. A cross aimed at Calvert-Lewin was easily cut out by his marker. Another round of subs killed any tempo Everton had been building. 

What looked like a great move down the right saw Doucoure again stall his cross and any chance to play in a ball for Calvert-Lewin visibly evaporated. Then, Rashford tried to dance his way in at the other end, Mykoleno giving up the corner. 

Onana caught Martinez with a poor challenge, setting up a fearsome opportunity for Rashford that Pickford helped over the bar. Everton worked the ball up well but Gray could only scuff his low shot. 

Everton attacked again with Neill and Gana down the left, winning a corner in added time. Gray swung it in and Godfrey tried to get it back for a header on goal but it went off McTominay and out... but no corner!

Rashford got free and went on a charge, Godfrey in with a tremendous tackle as he was about to shoot. Fernandez tried a late shot, screwed well wide as time looked like running out for the Blues and this time Garnacho drew a foul from Godfrey for a late penalty to the hosts that Rashford rolled in easily to end the game. 

Everton had played better than in recent games, but still often too slow and tentative going forward, while making crucial mistakes that gave away match-winning goals.

Manchester Utd: De Gea; Dalot, Varane, Shaw, Malacia (76' Martinez); Casemiro (71' Fred), Eriksen (83' Maguire); Antony (84' McTominay), Fernandes [Y:28'], Rashford; Martial (71' Garnacho).

Subs: Heaton, Lindelof, Wan-Bissaka, Elanga.

Everton: Pickford, Coleman (81'  Gordon), Mykolenko (81' McNeil), Godfrey [Y:60'], Coady, Tarkowski, Onana [Y:88'], Gana, Iwobi (50' Doucoure [Y:67']), Gray, Maupay (69' Calvert-Lewin).

Subs not Used: Begovic, Holgate, Mina, Davies, Simms. 

Reader Comments (297)

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer ()

Gary Johnson
1 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:05:11
Team as predictable as rain in January.

Price binned after being thrown to the lions, but Davies and McNeil on the bench.

Frank, you are a bigger bellend than any manager we've ever had. Absolute tit.

Jeff Armstrong
2 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:06:07
Simms should have started before Maupay imo, can’t do any worse, and who knows might do a lot better, might carry on his latest Sunderland form, but no bottle Frank puts paid to that, ..coward.

He'd come out with more kudos from the fans if he ditched half a dozen of these wasters and played the kids, but he hasn’t got the sense to even do that.

Tony Dunn
3 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:07:09
I've always stuck by Lampard but, after seeing that team, I reckon he just wants the sack and probably has done for a while.
Neil Lawson
4 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:07:37
Wouldn't use quite the same words as Gary, but he is correct. So predictable. So disappointing.
Brian Murray
5 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:10:21
Ah Bollox go back to Christine frank and tell her you was nearly a socialist one day
Neil Lawson
6 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:12:27
Two things are certain tonight:

1) No-one will post anything remotely positive;
2) We will lose.

Tony Hill
7 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:14:02
Stick with Lampard. He and we need some luck and, yes, new owners.

It's incredibly tough to hold tight just now but these things can turn when you least expect it.

Clive Rogers
8 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:14:07
That’s a team selected to keep the score down.
Joe McMahon
9 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:14:26
It's heartbreaking for us, Evertonians over many decades the lot of us, and the Everton line-up v Man Utd's.

The United team tonight is that powerful, loaded with pace and goals, we are taking the Moyes - Lampard knife to a fully loaded Roman Army.

George Cumiskey
10 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:17:32
Joe brilliant 🙂😜👍
Derek Taylor
11 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:17:40
You want something positive, Neil?

How about a hard-fought draw tonight for a start?

Robert Tressell
12 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:20:32
Looking at the Man Utd centre-backs with Shaw in there. They can definitely be got at by... oh, it's Maupay again. Ignore me.
Danny Baily
13 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:23:11
So long, Frank.
Brendan McLaughlin
14 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:25:11
Something positive? Neil #6

See Danny #13

Neil Lawson
15 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:26:27
Would love a hard-fought draw. But really?
Andy Crooks
16 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:26:35
We won't get battered. There's a difference between shite players and players sometimes playing shite.

You don't get to the Premier League without pride and committment. Our players have it in them. They can redeem themselves: new game, new chance. Take it. Win for the travelling Blues. It can be done.

Ray Smith
17 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:28:06
Simms or Calvert-Lewin second half for Maupay.

United have put out a strong side, which I am a little surprised. However, I'm not sure what's the benefit of another thrashing?
Blood the youngster and let's see who shines!

Gary Johnson
18 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:28:19
United's 5 man midfield is gonna utterly maul Franks 3 man bollocks. The back 5 against a 4 of Bruno, Antony, Rashford and Martial is an utter mismatch. To them. We'd need 8…….

Slow, boring, conservative, Grey Frank. Like the John Major character in Spitting Image he is…..

Michael Lynch
19 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:29:32
I'm slightly surprised there's none of the young players on the bench except Simms.

We must have a dreadful bunch of U21s. Every other team in the Premier League seems to have a handful that are good enough for at least a run-out.

Neil Lawson
20 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:29:46
One "young" player on bench. One. If I was in the U21 side, I would be begging for a loan away to Tiverton Town. I must be that good.
Brent Stephens
21 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:30:13
I hope the replay date doesn't disturb preparations for weekend league games.
Steve Shave
22 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:34:25
Frank can't win can he? I'm not really defending him because he has been utter shite himself this season so far.

However, they played a blinder with 3 at the back and wing backs against City. Unfathomably he changed the formation against Brighton and rightly got rinsed on here for it (clearly needed wingbacks after 10 mins!).

Folk call for a return to wingbacks and he does it, only to get rinsed again. It's time to go Frank.

Phil Smith
23 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:42:36
The league is the priority. He should have used today’s game as an opportunity to bring some life into the side with at least 2 youngsters starting. Only Simms on the bench is just such a slap in the face. I’m really tired of his selections. It’s a lose-lose this evening. Best hope is a draw.
Fran Mitchell
24 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:48:08
FA Cup. we should all be eagerly awaiting this game, no matter what, the FA Cup is a great tournament and would be a huge achievement if we won. But alas, I really don't care.

This club is numbing me. I feel nothing but a dull, vague and unpleasant nothingness when it comes to football right now.

Brendan McLaughlin
25 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:51:06
Phil #23

For Frank tonight, the league isn't the priority... neither is the FA Cup, BTW!

Ray Smith
26 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:53:11
Roy Keane says it how it is: A number of Everton players are not up to it, and they are not Premier League players!

What does Roy Keane know? A darned sight more than the present hierarchy. Roy won't piss on Frank's bonfire, but, if (big if) it comes to it? Is Roy a candidate? However, whatever you think of Roy, he's not daft.

If Lampard left, is Keane worth a shout?
I then woke up, Keane is not that daft!!!

Ernie Baywood
27 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:53:24
Former Manchester United captain Roy Keane on ITV:

"Everton have some bad players, really bad.

"That group of players, some of them are not upto Premier League standard, never mind Everton."

Derek Taylor
28 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:55:12
Just risked a tenner on Blues to win @10/1 ! how's that for positive thought ?
Tony Abrahams
29 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:56:06
The FA Cup, is fucking massive, and this is the 13th time we have faced United in the FA Cup. It currently stands at six wins each but our record in the cup has fallen off a cliff since the days of David Moyes when plucky little Everton suddenly started punching above our weight.

If we get fucked tonight, it won't hurt even 1% of the hurt that has been produced during the Bill Kenwright years. Everton always used to fight in cup games, so I just hope they fight tonight.

Ray Smith
30 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:56:13
Listen to the Everton supporters at Old Trafford! Transfer that into the team, and we wouldn’t be where we are.
Everton board listen to the fans there tonight! Shame on you!!!
Tony Everan
31 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:56:55
It feels like Frank is at the gallows, the hangman waiting with his noose.

Then Frank says, “Can I just say one thing before the fateful act?” This match is his plea.

Will Mabon
32 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:57:11
Of course you care, Fran... that's why you feel numb at the status quo.

We never know what will happen and it is the FA Cup...

Jerome Shields
33 Posted 06/01/2023 at 19:59:29
Expect Everton to put in a performance. Then a photo op for a smiling fat necked Bill.
Jay Harris
34 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:00:00
I said before the team was announced that if Frank picked Maupay he would deserve the sack for that one decision alone.

We are now 10-1 to win this. I just hope that's not the score.

Ernie Baywood
35 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:02:07
You think we can score one, Jay?
Derek Knox
36 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:06:28
Schoolgirl defending!
Neil Tyrrell
37 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:31:20
We can win this if DeGea chucks another one into his own net!

Is it wrong to wish a serious injury on Bruno? If so, I don't want to be right.

George Cumiskey
38 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:51:21
Casemiro getting away with murder.
Colin Malone
39 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:53:46
Why does Frank not play this formation more often?
Tony Hill
40 Posted 06/01/2023 at 20:54:43
Very encouraging, playing with a measure of calmness and fitness and, above all, intent.

Obviously, we must come out and do it all again. But there are signs there of a team in the making.

Neil Lawson
41 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:02:11
Why is the first look always backwards. Dixon is right about the need to play longer. Be brave.

Remove Iwobi who is just dreadful and stick Calvert-Lewin (or Simms) on and put at least some pressure onto them.

This is a very strange game. We look ripe for the picking but not yet happened.

Bill Fairfield
42 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:30:37
Fantastic support as usual. If only the team were as consistent.
Gavin Johnson
43 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:31:17
Gutted about Iwobi. We have zero creative players now. Now we need a creative midfielder besides from a striker this window.

I don't see us selling Doucoure now either.

Derek Knox
44 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:33:47
How much did we pay for Onana, he's about as much use as a cupholder on a racehorse!
Christy Ring
45 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:42:37
Tried to make a comment for the last 20min's on live forum, absolute joke.
Michael Lynch
46 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:48:56
Lots of effort but so little quality in this squad. I haven’t seen anything tonight to suggest we’ll stay up.
Danny Baily
47 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:57:33
That's that for Lampard.
Simon Dalzell
48 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:58:17
,I thought Onana did okay, Derek (44), in fact, reasonably well.

We are just so poor in general.

Please sack Lampard!

James Fletcher
49 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:58:39
Actually thought we were pretty decent tonight considering the opposition – very unlucky with Gray's effort off the post and a really marginal offside.

If we can perform similarly against Southampton then maybe we have some hope.

George Cumiskey
50 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:58:41
I hope the fuck no one comes on ToffeeWeb and says we can take some positives from this, because we fucking can't! 🤬🤬🤬
Pat Kelly
51 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:59:10
Lampard will limp on till it's too late...
Jim Bennings
52 Posted 06/01/2023 at 21:59:15
Doucoure an absolute waste of a shirt, slow as fuck and can't use the football.

Anyone who thinks Godfrey can play right-back has had their answer tonight, lad is far too hot headed and wreckless.

Oh well, another season with the little glimmer we had of a trophy gone, into a 29th year now then eh?

Gray comes out of that with credit, played really well, unfortunately we don't possess a midfield player that can find a pass anymore since James and Sigurdsson left.

Jim Bennings
53 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:00:43
Can't work out why the hell we brought Simms back from his loan either if we are persistent with playing Maupay on his own up front?

Just a really weird club to work out.

Michael Lynch
54 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:00:43
3-1 about right in the end. Huge gulf between the squads but Man Utd didn't really need to raise a sweat to beat us.

Gray was good and it helps having Gordon and Calvert-Lewin on the pitch but other than that, meh…

Kevin Molloy
55 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:00:44
In typical Everton fashion, we get the worst of all worlds. We go out of the cup, but sow enough doubt to keep this loser in post for another week probably.
Danny Baily
56 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:01:52
Jim 52,

I thought we looked much, much better with Doucoure in for Iwobi. Still rubbish, but much better.

Stephen Brown
57 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:01:54
Good effort, Lampard and players. Superb effort fans!!

Sack the board, sell the club!! Enough is enough!

Can Carlo lend us some players??

Gavin Johnson
58 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:03:33
Michael #46 I disagree about the performance.

The score with the penalty flatters them. It could have been 2-2 at the end of 90 minutes. I don't think anyone expected something from that game, but I think we got a performance and some fight. Something that was completely missing from the other night.

Now we have serious work to do in the transfer market. I really hope the interest about Moffi is true. Just the profile of striker we need. It worries me how we'll replace Iwobi though. We were interested in the Japanese lad from Frankfurt who's out of contract in the summer. Maybe that's one we'll try and revisit.

Joe McMahon
59 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:04:25
3 -1 scoreline harsh and of course the obligatory VAR against Everton.

They tried, but confidence is lacking. The ball is treated like a hot potato. Not enough running forwards with the ball and Ellis Simms would have been better if starting at Sunderland.

Whatever happens now? I dunno.

Alec Gaston
60 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:05:02
Anyone else sick of always losing?
Phil Wood
61 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:05:08
Team turned up. Didn't deserve 3-1. Ref was crap. Iwobi was nobbled and never a penalty. Apart from that, I thought we had a go.

Wish Utd no luck. Up 'em. Yes, I am a bad loser. Hope we can show more spirit after this and move forward.

Neil Tyrrell
62 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:05:14
29 (and counting) it is then.

Sadly I think we did about as well today as we can do, can't expect much more from this bunch. The effort was there but the home truth is we are just a shit team. Frank will become the latest fall guy, thanks for trying buddy. Please not Rooney or Martinez next.

Hope Iwobi injury isn't serious.

Mike Oates
63 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:06:40
A performance at least, but still woefully poor at giving the opposition chances on turnovers.
Simon Dalzell
64 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:08:56
Danny @56. I agree. I thought Doucoure improved us. Jim's comment seems very harsh.

The bar is set so low now, some people on here see positives from the same old garbage. 'A performance at least'. Sorry just more of the same.

Jerome Shields
65 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:11:28
Thought Everton where poorer attacking second half, particularly after the break. They couldn't get Gray on the ball. The Subs had little impact, except for Calvert-Lewin's disallowed goal. Poor defending by Everton allowed the Man Utd goals.

I think Frank may even be glad he has only the League to contend with this squad.

Ian Wright wants to hear from the Everton Board.

Peter Carpenter
66 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:11:57
Stop playing Gueye. He contributes nothing.
Brendan McLaughlin
67 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:12:13
Despite the defeat... much better tonight than against Brighton.

Problem is… Frank won't learn from this.

Jim Wilson
68 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:13:03
The positives:

Lampard sacked
Dyche appointed
Striker signed
Midfield playmaker signed
4-4-2 formation implemented

All a bloody dream!

Ray Smith
69 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:13:16
Why did we bring Simms back!!!!!!
Tony Hill
70 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:14:20
That was a much, much better effort but I think – and there's no way of defining this – that we have become a losing club. It's deep within us and within events that surround us (for the most part).

It's a great shame, of course, but I think it may now be irremediable. As I say, no easy way to be precise about this but it's just there, hanging over us. It happens in all walks of life and you know when someone or something is done for.

Alec Gaston
71 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:14:44
My 11-year-old son has just summed it up:

“Doesn't matter how well we did, Dad, we lost. 3 wins in the whole season – I hate Everton.”

I am gutted!!!

Jim Bennings
72 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:15:06
Hard to think this time 3 years ago we were complaining about a midfield that had Sigurdsson, Rodriguez and Richarlison in it.

No matter what way we look at the game, it's another loss, three more goals shipped and only one scored.

No doubt next week we'll drop off because it's only "little old Southampton" and botch up another game.

Everton, the club that just doesn't do wins.

Stuart Sharp
73 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:15:28

I for one think we were slightly unlucky, especially given the gulf in quality and form. Rashford was basically the difference.

I will also stick up for Onana, who I think did better than some are suggesting. Gray is our only good player though... and he cost something like a 12th of McNeil.

Ian Edwards
74 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:16:03
Not having these shouts that we looked better with Doucoure for Iwobi. That was when the game was lost. Doucoure offered nothing.

We should have played two up top but Lampard and his puppetmaster Clement don't have the bottle.

Peter Carpenter
75 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:16:21
Onana played well.
Christine Foster
76 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:17:28
On the one hand, all the Man Utd goals were poor and they created nothing. We gift-wrapped the victory to them with the own-goal and last-kick, soft penalty. There may well have been a gulf in class but the Blues were always in that game.

On the positive side, they created chances, were unlucky to have a goal disallowed, and never stopped trying. Not good enough but infinitely better than the last few games. Yes, the scoreline looks good for Man Utd but it did flatter them.

The question now is will it be enough to stave off the bullet for Lampard? It didn't look like the performance of a team who have given up on the manager but they are really short of the quality to make a difference. Stick or twist?

Tony Abrahams
77 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:18:21
No positives going out the cup but, if the players put that effort in, and Lampard plays with that formation until we get a bit more confidence and a couple of better players into the squad, I think we will not only survive, but we will also start to improve.

It's the best I have seen Everton play against one of the better teams away from home for a long time, and but for the width of a skin, the outcome could have been different tonight.

(Roy Keane has a good point, and maybe the players performed better because they maybe played like it was a free-hit?)

We are where we are for a reason; although I've been critical of Lampard, the club has been cursed for a very long time. I'd sooner the manager than the board, whose silence has been deafening, or extremely laughable thinking about Barrett-Baxendale's previous notes.

Brendan McLaughlin
78 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:19:16
Christine #76



Danny Baily
79 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:20:03
With Frank going, that will give us a bounce, and if we can keep Calvert-Lewin fit, there's a chance we can dig ourselves out of this hole.
Gary Johnson
80 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:20:16
“Valiant” - 🤣🤣

We are broken from chairman to any fan excusing where we are.

Jerome Shields
81 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:20:16
Gray and Onana are the only players that looked Premier League standard.
Mick Conalty
82 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:20:44
No fourth round to get in the way of Dubai and warm weather
(Holiday) training. Lovely. 😎
Michael Fox
83 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:21:04
Looking at that, we're not that far away.

Get well soon, Alex.

Christy Ring
84 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:21:10
Put in a shift, Doucoure came on an embarrassment, ref gave us nothing.

Si Cooper
85 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:21:29
Definitely a neutral performance as far as making management decisions goes.

Rashford on top form and Godfrey still a few weeks from full pace is probably what really determined all their goals.

First half we were so wasteful it was maddening. Iwobi had a shocker on the ball, Gana just has to stick to keeping it dead simple.

Scrapping for every ball and eliminating simple errors is necessary if the manager and season are to be saved.

Jim Bennings
86 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:21:39
The ball is a hot potato with Doucoure (and Gana) – neither can use the football.

Iwobi wasn't really that good but at least he carries the ball forward but unfortunately it looks like a long one out now.

A game that was there to be taken against a rather makeshift Man Utd defence, and a braver approach maybe starting Simms instead of Maupay and then bringing on Calvert-Lewin after the hour would have been more rewarding.

Can't understand what Frank has seen or hasn't seen from Maupay playing as a striker to make him think it works.

Phillip Warrington
87 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:23:08
In football terms, we weren't on the same pitch as United. If they had been more clinical in their finishing, it could have been 5-1.

Please, for fuck's sake, remove Frank, and don't let him bring in any more players. He brought in 6 players that played tonight so people stop saying he inherited a bad squad, Frank has just added 5 to that list.

That's the problem with Everton – he should have been removed when the World Cup break happened, it was obvious then that he was out of his depth... but no, we let it go and go and now, whoever they bring in will be under pressure. Instead of having the World Cup break to train with the players, they will have a couple of days.

We need a top class striker so we let it go and go. The board gave Frank close to £80M to spend on players so who does Frank buy? Maupay, McNeil, Gana, Garner and Onana. Loans Tarkowski and Coady and most of the players who were here seem to be going backwards at an alarming rate.

So, people, is that the board's fault? No, it's entirely on Frank but don't get me wrong – the chairman and board do have to go but don't make them the scapegoat for Frank's poor management.

Mark Ryan
88 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:23:22
Ray @ 69.

He was brought back by Frank as a subliminal message to us all. The board have once again said "No money for a striker".

The attempt to get Ings on loan tells us that too. P&F rules have us hamstrung. We are broke... but he should still have given the lad his chance tonight.

Phil Wood
89 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:24:06
It's funny but many posters think so differently about the merits of our players tonight. Some saying Doucoure crap or great. Same with Onana.

I really think we showed enough here and at Man City to be able to give us more hope for the rest of the season.

Jay Harris
90 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:24:11
I can't fault the effort and I thought we played well in passing and movement but, if you can't score goals and leak them like a sieve, then you're gonna lose most games.

How many of our 14 or 15 goals this season have been from good build-up play rather than individual created and scored or opposition errors?

This can't go on and, if we don't thrash Southampton, we need to have an immediate change ready and prepared.

Ian Edwards
91 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:26:43
Christy 84.

One win in 12. I apologise for pointing that out. You might think that's acceptable; I don't.

As for Ancelotti. The results in his last 6 months particularly at home speak for themselves. He just sat in Italian Restaurants and put Davide in charge.

Mal van Schaick
92 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:28:25
The FA Cup has gone. We need to stay in the Premier League, whatever it takes.
Gavin Johnson
93 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:30:51
Mark #88,

We've got about £25M coming in from Juve this summer for the money they're obliged to pay on Moise Kean, so we should be able to use that now, It will be coming in the same financial year after all.

At the end of the day, Moshiri is going to have to sign off some signings to keep us up. He'll lose a lot more money if we go down. I think we will go down if we don't bring in two players who can make an impact.

Anthony Murphy
94 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:32:28
Not a bad effort tonight but the reality is that, unless we bring in at least two players who can improve our attacking threat, we are likely to get relegated.

We are now missing Iwobi for a while – Patterson too – so, regardless of who the manager is, we need players through the door. Where's the money we had ready to spend on Kudus in the summer gone?

Raymond Fox
95 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:34:26
That's another player we couldn't afford to lose. Brainless to play a full side in this game, it's asking to get relegated. Fucking stupid.

Nevermind… we will have the best ground in the Championship – that's if it gets finished.

Tony Everan
96 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:37:04
One win in the last twelve games. Any other club and Frank would be gone to stop the rot and allow a new approach. It's very dangerous territory now continuing to back him.

Tonight's match was better, we looked more solid and difficult to play against. Onana, Gray impressed, Calvert-Lewin unlucky not to poach an equaliser. Some good signs.

Not sure Man Utd were out of first gear though for this game. They seemed to win it via going through the motions and the usual help from the referee throughout.

It would be folly to look at this match in isolation and the few positives it threw up. The bigger picture gives a more accurate view.

I'm still massively concerned that Frank is not a real Premier League manager tactically or with any of the necessary in-game management skills required.

I wanted to be proved wrong because Frank coming good and stability were by far the best outcomes.

Not changing managers now is just delaying the inevitable and I think it is a much bigger gamble than bringing in an experienced manager who has the game plan and the tactical acumen to keep us up.

Danny Baily
97 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:37:30
Anthony 94, look at the fixtures and do the maths. We've already been relegated.
Steve Carter
98 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:39:42
I'm with those on the ‘Why no Simms' point.

We had no realistic chance of winning the FA cup. Why not give him a full run? If he went well, great.

Dave Abrahams
99 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:39:55
We did better than the other night, much better… but there are too many poor players in the team, making poor, ridiculous and futile passes.

with 11 or even 10 players that play together, we could have won this game. A lot more effort tonight but some of the individual play was very poor with players panicking.

Experienced players should be able to calm the game down but can't hold the ball for a couple of seconds and then find their team mates with a pass. It's rush, rush, rush most of the time and I made more tackles from my armchair while some players were standing still watching the play.

There is maybe enough to keep us up with a couple of players coming in and a new manager with fresh ideas and more football nous than Lampard joining us. and cajoling the players into producing enough wins to get us up there and out of the Bottom 6 by the end of the season.

I'll be a lot more hopeful if Frank has gone by Monday with the new man starting on Tuesday 8-00am.

Andrew Bentley
100 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:41:41
Iwobi's injury could be a good thing as he was clearly a Frank favourite and he has been much better this season but, since the restart, he's not offering much. It may create the opportunity to mix up the formation and try some things out.

Put Gordon in the Iwobi role and Gray off Calvert-Lewin and we could cause teams problems (rather than playing them both wide). If he just goes with Onana, Gana and Doucoure, then I give up!

I'd go 4-3-3 with a solid back four of Coleman, Tarkowski, Coady, and Godfrey. And then Gana, Onana and Gordon, Gray, Calvert-Lewin and Maupay.

Go out fighting – not this negative football we've been playing for years.

Andy Meighan
101 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:41:51
Gray and Onana were superb tonight and that's coming from someone who's been Onana's biggest critic.

And if Calvert-Lewins goal is offside we might as well all pack it in now because truly that's ridiculous. I've always been under the impression the attacker gets the benefit of the doubt. And Roy Keane thought the same (or was it Ian Wright?). That was a joke.

The system Frank played tonight is the system that suits this personnel. If he reverts back next week, well, he'll sack himself.

Matt Henderson
102 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:42:36
We are too skint to do business early in the window and, just like in the summer, will wait until the end when hopefully we can sell some players and/or the selling clubs drop their prices a bit.

As a consequence, we will go another 3 or 4 games with the current shite – just like we did when writing off the first 5 games of the season before we strengthened!

Alec Gaston
103 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:45:51
We need to win 8 games to get to 39 points – that's nearly 50% ... I'm not sure we scrape our way out .

Our only chance is how tight the bottom of the league is but we can't always rely on others doing us a favour.

Mike Price
104 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:46:21
Glorious failure. Do not give Iwobi a new contract.
Rob Dolby
105 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:46:37
Funny how people see so many things differently.

If we had this same drive and formation in each game, we would be safe as houses in the league. The problem is when Lampard tries to use those 2 wingers.

Iwobi getting injured is a shame though I thought Doucoure played well and showed drive and physical presence.

Onana, Gana and Doucoure is a solid centre 3.

I thought Onana was great tonight, he gave the ball away a lot but he led and drove the team from the middle of the park.

Godfrey at fault for 2 goals, first and last. Okay he has come back from injury but he looks more like a 400-metre runner than a footballer. Maupay isn't a Premier League player, why recall Simms if he isn't going to get a game?

Onwards to next Saturday. I think tonight's showing gives Frank a bit of breathing space until Saturday.

Tony Abrahams
106 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:46:45
I think It's obvious that this has got to be the formation until we gain more confidence, whoever is in charge of Everton next week.

I don't think we have got the central defenders or central midfielders to play with just two in either position, and although it would be nice to get a second centre-forward, I'm just not sure we have got enough fast or physical players in our squad right now to make this happen?

I have been critical of Onana and Iwobi, and whilst I thought Onana had a much better game tonight, I didn't think Gueye was so effective.

The players had a go though, and it was a much better performance than the last time Man Utd knocked us out of a cup competition, when I don't think we had a shot against them at Goodison under Ancellotti.

We even started looking much better with the ball towards the end of tonight's game.

We are out, the game has now gone, so please be next to go, Mr Kenwright, and please turn up at Goodison next week, Mr Moshiri, so if you don't sell, then you will at least realize that our club needs drastic changes.

Kieran Kinsella
107 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:48:21
Alec 71,

Agreed. We are like Scotland now losing to Luxembourg then having a “brave” loss to England. We lost. Again. That's all that matters.

Iain Johnston
108 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:48:34
Too shy and not enough expression. They need to take a risk but they insist on the notion to keep passing it sideways or back when there's a chance of going forward.

Okay, we all know Maupay isn't the answer to a multiple of questions but he made a few decent runs into space tonight and was totally ignored. Too many also pass just for the sake of it when they could carry the ball 5 -10 metres forward.

Brendan McLaughlin
109 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:50:01
Matt #102,

"Before we strenghtened"... what?

Overnight security?
The pitch fertiliser?
Frank's Grecian 2000?

Danny Baily
110 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:50:41
Alec 103, the target for the season was 10 wins. If we were to reach that, realistically we needed maximum points against Forest, Wolves and Brighton. In all likelihood, it's over.

Reading comments on here, that doesn't seem to have sunk in.

Jim Wilson
111 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:52:21
So we concede 3 but the system worked.

It's an absolute joke.

Can anyone tell me when we had a run of good form using this system or even 2 back-to-back wins?

4-3-3 and 3-5-2 do not work for us. It is clear as day. There is a system we can use that has seen us go half a season unbeaten, in recent times, but people choose to ignore it and keep on debating whether to use 4-3-3 or 3-5-2.

It's madness.

Alec Gaston
112 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:56:27
Kieran, glad you agree.

I like Lampard. But 12 wins and 22 defeats since he took over – I was happy to give him the benefit of the doubt after Benitez and reset this season, but the stats don't lie.

3 wins this season – the problems he has are not all of his making, that's on the board, but not sure he has the ability or know-how to get us out of the mess with these players.

Who has though!!!!

Frank Sheppard
113 Posted 06/01/2023 at 22:57:24
Best on-pitch performance for quite a while.
Gary Johnson
115 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:01:28
Which says something after being slapped 3-1...
Colin Glassar
116 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:02:08
Onana was head and shoulders above everyone else - literally.

I expected a performance tonight and, to a degree, got one. If we scrap like that, whoever the manager is, we might stay up.

Alec Gaston
117 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:03:59
Frank – but we lost 3-1.
Andy Crooks
118 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:05:17
Ian @91,

I'm reasonably confident that Christy, like all of us, doesn't think one win in twelve is acceptable. Maybe he gets some pleasure in looking for the odd thing to be positive about and doesn't feel the need to keep repeating his disdain for the team.

It doesn't take a great deal of insight to recognize how poor we are right now but, here's the thing. As you see yourself as not accepting these (and I agree with you) lamentable stats, just how is your non-acceptance going to manifest itself?

This site is great for venting on, I've done it often enough, but stating the obvious and thinking you're one of the few who gets it, time after time after time, is desperate. I know, I did it in the latter Moyes era and the Blue who called me a stuck record was spot on.

Frank Sheppard
119 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:07:00
Yes Alec, of course we did. That was a guarantee.

But, we didn't collapse, or give in, or play like clueless no-hopers.

John Malone
120 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:07:10
Rob Dolby @105, I agree with every word you've said there mate!

Onana was our best player and Godfrey doesn't look a footballer, he looks more suited to rugby. He plays like a naive school kid – never composed and in control of the situation with or without the ball.

Colin Malone
121 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:09:43
Jim # 111.

What system was that Jim?

Tonight and the City game's formation are much more better than Frank's favoured formation.

Why not carry on with this formation, home and away???

Lee Robinson
122 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:09:44
That was frustrating, we could be so much better with the ball.

The problem is all our problems come from our own mistakes, every week. And it is simply down to the recruitment of these players, we have no chance against anyone if 5-yard passes, over hit crosses, mis-controlled or players can't pick the right pass. It happens so often with this bunch of players, whoever we play.

I actually think our defence is really good (bar Godfrey), and is probably Top 8 standard, but it is constantly under threat due to the midfield and attack not being able to keep hold of it.

Sigurdsson got pelters but this is what he did for us very well in his time here.

Gutted for Iwobi, his reaction says it doesn't look good. Hopefully this may mean a technical number 10 could be maybe a loan option along with a striker in the window.

Special mention to Gray who was excellent, he is the one to who we pin our hopes on at the minute.

It's funny we started the season with 5 at the back and and were pretty solid and there was uproar from the fan base to play 3 in midfield and Frank didn't understand the squad. Now fans are screaming the opposite.

Mike Price
123 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:16:32
Gray is our only top quality player. Mykolenko and Iwobi are overpaid, overpriced disasters, basically just added to our forest of deadwood.
Sam Hoare
124 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:21:46
Iwobi has not been great for the past few weeks (or really since Frank weirdly moved him to the right instead of left) but he's one of our only players who passes forward regularly and actually creates chances from open play.

Without him I think we'll have to revert to Benitez ball, playing tight and direct; hoping to grab a set-piece or a counter-attacking gem. It won't be pretty but maybe it could be (a tiny bit more) effective.

I have little faith in Lampard personally but it looks like the board want to back him. Hold onto your hats because it will be another tense relegation scrap.

Trevor Peers
125 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:22:25
We didn't play well, we just showed a bit of fight. The number of misplaced passes is totally embarrassing and has been like that all season. Frank has reduced these players into gibbering wrecks.

Confidence, or lack of it, comes from the manager during these bad runs; keep Lampard and we will be relegated. I wouldn't trust the powers that be to make the right decision though, they're absolutely hopeless. Rooney would be laughable, he is literally a 'no-brainer'.

Tony Abrahams
126 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:24:32
Jim must obviously mean the 4-5-1 system that both Moyes and Ancelotti used?

Fair enough, I just want us to be a lot harder to beat, and although we conceded three tonight, I thought we looked a lot better, both in attack and defence, than we did against Brighton the other night.

Ray Jacques
127 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:29:07
Concensus is we played well, yet we lost yet again. Three wins all season, beaten by teams around us in the league, an awful run of form (not won since Palace at home).

We can't score goals, the defence that we thought was solid are now conceding three and sometimes four goals. No other team is cast adrift at the bottom like last season so three places are up for grabs for relegation.

We have an owner who has lost interest in the club, a Chairman and Chief Executive Officer who aren't fit for purpose, fan dissatisfaction (rightly so), etc, etc.

For fuck's sake, it all adds up to relegation. Sack Lampard, even though I don't blame him for the state of our once proud club and get Bielsa on a short-term, performance-related contract.

"It's our only hope," as the Princess said to Obi-wan in Star Wars.

Tony Abrahams
128 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:29:19
I personally think Iwobi has been part of the problem, breaking rank to chase shadows, making it so much easier for the opposition, but I thought he was having a better game tonight.

Hopefully it's not as bad as it looked, although he did appear to be in a lot of pain, but isn't every Evertonian in a lot of pain right now?

How did Doucoure miss that pass, Stuart @129? It really was a clever midfielder's dream…

Stuart Sharp
129 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:31:01
While Ian Edwards's copy-and-paste posts about managers are extremely wearing, I agree with him about Doucoure. We only looked slightly better when he came on because we attacked more as time slipped away.

The guy's passing is bafflingly bad. And he missed clear opportunities to cross or play in Maupay (on the rare occasion Maupay had made the right run).

Iwobi is bang average for a Premier League player, but he at least puts a proper shift in even when we're losing.

Tony Abrahams
130 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:32:37
Rashford has praised Everton, and said he thinks we played as a team tonight and were unlucky with our disallowed goal.

I thought the banner was brilliant, and whatever happens this week, I can't wait to see how next week's sit-in goes.

Jason Li
131 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:35:02
Things look dire but back to the league and 2 wins and it's mid-table.

I like Gray in the No 10 role. He's not Messi but is one of the best ball carriers in the league. Plus, as he does have end product so he needs to be given the ball as much as possible near the edge of the box where his end-product zone is, and the team need to keep feeding him.

O'Neil, I think he has to play to his strength, like at Burnley, which on MotD is playing in balls from the left touchline like David Beckham did from the right – all technical no dribbling.

His end-product zone area is similar to Beckham (obviously Beckham was world class) and we need to be clever to make use of his different ability with in-swinging balls with a left foot. If Maupay or Gray automatically runs into a certain space when McNeil gets the ball, I think he can find them.

McNeil just looks a bit like Digne who wants to find a way on the left to put the ball in and there's nothing wrong with that if we find a way to get the best out of his method to find a cross and not expect him to run every time, because it looks like that's not in his locker.

Gordon is a dilemma, he just can't hit them yet like Gray. Got to play him to run beyond the defence from the right where he can get into the box and score in the box or it's outside of his end-product zone.

Mike Price
132 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:35:12
I wish Lampard had played for Liverpool because he would have been sacked before the World Cup. This weird tolerance/love-in with our support base is going to take us down. It's like the Emperor's new clothes!

His job is to manage the players he has and make the best of them, plus add what's needed when he has some money to spend…he's massively failed on both counts – and yet people are focusing on the Board.

The Board are a calamity, we all know that, but in the short-term the manager needs to be competent to get us out of this impending disaster; unfortunately, he's unfit for purpose.

Moshiri is on his way out, we may get a good new owner, but we need to stay in the Premier League… Lampard will say all the right things but take us down.

Danny O’Neill
133 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:35:27
I've just got off the Tram from Old Trafford and will head home early in the morning. Excuse me as I'll make a more considered opinion when I've thought about it tomorrow.

That was a decent performance. The difference was the quality and once again our midfield looked wide open from the very high view point I had in the Upper Tier of the away end.

But it was a close match and we showed spirit and fight and were just 2 decisions away from a result.

The match aside, I met up with an old colleague before the match. Lifelong United fan and he took me with his match going mates to a proper United pub near Deansgate. They looked after me.

For the football purists, some great George Best memorabilia and decor. The Old Nag's Head near Deansgate. I recommend it to any football fan.

Back to Everton. The result was a big disappointment but I always gauge the supporters' reaction. They didn't turn on the players and gave them a good reception at the end as we saw the effort even if we felt the pain.

Although, once the players were applaued, the "Sack the Board" chants were loud.

Gavin Johnson
134 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:38:02
We need to play 3-5-2 even against sides like Saints now. They'll be more onus on the full-backs to get further up the pitch in these type of fixtures.

Unfortunate that Patterson is out. Maybe Iwobi could have played there, but that's not an option now. I'm not sure Gordan can do the tracking back necessary, so we will probably have to stick with Coleman.

Anyone thinking Vinagre (who is an attack-minded left-back) could do a better job than Mykolenko??

Jim Wilson
135 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:38:04
Tony @ 126,

Yes, 4-4-2 which can change into 4-5-1, when necessary. A strong midfield with numbers stopping the opposition getting a grip on the game and creating chances has to be the way to go.

Three central defenders is one too many and that extra man can be used in midfield instead.

A solid midfield with numbers is the way to go especially when a team has a weak forward line. We must eke out 0-0s or 1-0s as the Moyes team did or Joe Royle's 'Dogs of War'.

Not forgetting that, in Martinez's first season, we went half a season unbeaten using 4-4-2 and 4-5-1.

Mike Doyle
136 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:39:19
Tony 126,

I agree totally. With our current personnel, 4-5-1 is the most sensible formation and gives us the best chance to pick up points.

Jim Wilson
137 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:47:38
Mike @ 136 - Totally agree, I just wish there was more people on here who could see it.
Tony Abrahams
138 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:48:15
4-4-2 with this squad is a big no from me Jim, but I'd go with 4-5-1 all day.

I did say that we should use the system we used tonight for the rest of the season, but I was thinking that Lampard, deserves next week after tonight. I don't think he or anyone else can go back to 4-3-3 after tonight.

Man Utd are a very good team, and I thought Everton were unlucky tonight. The longer the game went on tonight, I thought we got better and braver with the ball.

It wasn't enough, and it still wasn't great, but it was definitely better than I've seen for a long time and also against very good opposition.

Maybe United never reached their top gear but I'm not sure if this is true because I don't watch them every week. United are rarely flustered, and that obviously explains the gulf in actual ability between the two sets of players, but I definitely thought Everton were a lot better, and looked more compact tonight.

Jim Wilson
139 Posted 06/01/2023 at 23:56:51
Tony @ 138,

I agree, 4-5-1 is the way to go. If you have the player who supports the lone forward dropping into midfield, it makes it 4-5-1 when needed. Barkley did it when supporting Lukaku, Cahill did it under Moyes.

Against the better teams, you keep it at 4-5-1 but against the lesser teams if the game is going well it can be adjusted to 4-4-2.

Matthew Williams
141 Posted 06/01/2023 at 00:10:23
Okay, so we lost again, first time I've seen the Blues Boys this season and thought we played alright in the main but the luck wasn't with us, the VAR call was so tight!

For me, the definite week links are Mykolenko and Gana (way too negative), so keep with the back five, three in midfield and play two up front. My team would be:

Coleman (till Patterson returns)
Davies (till Iwobi returns or Garner)

That side could save us yet, plenty of games yet to turn it round Blues.

One thing i am sure about is that Man Utd will not win the Cup this season... a bog standard team that are a shadow of what they used to be!

Fran Mitchell
143 Posted 07/01/2023 at 00:29:41
The performance counts for nothing. There were elements to give a certain degree of pride – but that just highlights how low we've fallen. Pride in a 3-1 defeat.

But the fact is, we can only play in such a manner against teams that will attack and have 60-70% possession.

We generally are not too bad when we sit deep and play on the counter. But when we play the teams below the top 7/8, it won't work because they will play equally deep – except maybe Leicester, Leeds and Brentford.

When the impetus is on us to play with the ball, we are hopeless. Woeful passing and movement off the ball, and clear lack of ideas.

Lampard attempted, and has failed miserably, to get us playing 'progressive' football. Countless times we'd start a game looking energetic and attacking, only to fail to score and the lack of organisation resulting in us conceding and then hopeless, Brighton was the biggest example of this.

If we started the season playing the 5-3-2 pragmatic system, it may have been enough, scraping a couple of extra 1-0s and a couple of extra draws. But now, the fact is we need to win 7-8 games and draw 3-4 to get around 25 points which we need to avoid the drop. And 3-5-2, sit deep, and counter, very likely will not achieve that. But equally, it's probably our only chance.

It's grim.

Our next 6 games will decide our fate. Southampton, West Ham, Arsenal, Liverpool, Leeds, Villa. 4 home games. 10 points minimum required.

John Raftery
144 Posted 07/01/2023 at 00:36:16
Not great but better. After a poor start, the players clawed their way into the game, gained a slice of luck for the equaliser but were then unlucky with the own-goal and the VAR offside decision.

The formation gave the team a fighting chance to compete. The players looked as though they believed in what they were doing. They did not look unfit. They did not lack motivation. Onana had his best game in midfield and Gray continued to be our best attacker.

The consensus seems to be Frank will be given the Southampton match. Lose that and he will be gone. It appears to be as stark as that.

Kieran Kinsella
145 Posted 07/01/2023 at 00:45:06

I've been pro Lampard too. I'm not convinced sacking him will improve things. But while I hate the old “couldn't be worse” argument, in this situation, with us on track to be relegated and out of both cups, it couldn't be worse.

But could it be better with this squad? Probably not

Bill Watson
146 Posted 07/01/2023 at 00:49:51
A much improved performance but we still give up the ball far too easily in midfield. Most of their first-half attacks started with a misplaced pass from us.

United were flattered by the scoreline and spent the last 20 minutes wasting time and playing down the clock. As usual, the crucial decisions went against us and we were a post and a toenail from getting, at least, a draw.

Two points about the Iwobi incident; the United player went through onto his foot. I've seen players red-carded for that but no card and no free kick. Was the VAR on a break? The second point is why it took so long to get Doucoure on. It was obvious Iwobi couldn't continue.

Phil Smith
147 Posted 07/01/2023 at 01:13:37
Gavin Johnson (93), don't be so sure, mate. Juve are in even more serious financial trouble than us. Still owe Ronaldo €16M, apparently. We won't be seeing any money for Kean for a while.

Need to sell Mina or Keane and Doucoure and get some money to bring in a striker and/or some creative player – though I think Dele is on the way back so maybe not. Last chance saloon for him at the top level.

Let Vinagre go back to Portugal to free up a loan spot. Bring in one of the players from the Japan squad. Hard working, skilful and quick. Mitoma killed us the other day.

Phil Wood
148 Posted 07/01/2023 at 01:43:05
Well said, Bill 146.

I thought I was one of only a very few that thought it was another Son-type tackle on Iwobi.

Cynical and the tosser looked like he couldn't care less when Iwobi was in distress. He had 2 dodgy tackles in the game and got off scot-free. Just like Casemiro who was lucky not to have 2 yellows first half.

Ref only loved Red shirts.

Phil Wood
149 Posted 07/01/2023 at 01:50:23
Just as an afterthought – I bet Cantona wishes he had had this ref at the Palace game. He could have jumped in the crowd and come out of it with a free-kick.
Derek Knox
150 Posted 07/01/2023 at 02:01:22
Phil @ 147, good shout on the Japanese or Korean market, but how much would Tommy Niktawinna cost ?

Only joking, there but certainly a hunting ground worth exploration, many of these so called Third World Football Countries, definitely also worth looking at. Tired of these megamiliion flops who just stroll about, and contribute very little, but become Millionaires overnight almost.

Brian Wilkinson
151 Posted 07/01/2023 at 03:44:36
I think the USA is a good market to look for players, it has come on leaps and bounds over there from a while back.

Players playing high-tempo football, plenty of energy and a lot more of their homegrown players as well.

Used to think it was second-rate football, with overseas past-it players, mixed with bang-average college players, times have certainly changed over there, players have got better and plenty out there to have a sniff at.

Much better performance tonight, they certainly gave it a go tonight.

Ernie Baywood
152 Posted 07/01/2023 at 03:47:06
I thought we saw what we generally see. Decent effort, lack of quality, lack of goal threat.

Without doubt, we're better suited to not having to force the issue. The reason is, very simply, because we're not good with the ball.

So I see two options against teams who won't necessarily come at us.

1. Play this formation and force them to come at us.

2. Completely bypass the midfield and play a big man - little man forward line with pace on the flanks. Go direct at every opportunity and let the midfielders chase until they drop.

But don't go out with a balanced approach. We're not good enough for that.

Sean Roe
153 Posted 07/01/2023 at 04:43:32
We've shipped seven goals in two games.

Is Lampard still here???

Derek Knox
154 Posted 07/01/2023 at 05:35:07
In all fairness, that was a much more committed performance against a virtually full-strength United side. The own-goal didn't help, as well as getting yet again, a very marginal offside (millimetres) ruling our 'equaliser' out.

Can someone please tell me why Simms was brought back from Sunderland, where he was scoring regularly, to sit on the bench? Again, as well as Simms, none of our other youngsters who have been better than the seniors pre-season – Price, Mills, Cannon – weren't even given a place!

Kieran Kinsella
155 Posted 07/01/2023 at 05:46:38

I thought Price particularly was weird. We threw him out the other night potentially destroying his confidence by dropping him in when we were getting thrashed but, once he came in, we were better.

He was also according to Begovic our best player on the tour of Australia. Yet tonight he's playing for the Under 21s while perennial failure Tom Davies – who yesterday was on Twitter doing some bizarre ballroom dancing in the changing room with an invisible woman(?) – was on the bench.

Then there is Stanley Mills who impressed in the summer and he's disappeared altogether. As for Simms, if he's that useless then why bring him back at all?

Best case we can sell him for a loss a few years from now like Broadhead once he is 25 after a few more loan spells.

I'd also say that while I'm a fan of Coleman as a player and a man, he is no longer the player he was before the horrific leg break and ageing. Based on his mental toughness he can fill in here and there but if Patterson is out for a while then Godfrey or Holgate would be better options at right-back when games are coming every three days.

Andy Walker
156 Posted 07/01/2023 at 06:25:01
Much better performance. Showed some bravery in the ball at last, much better attitude.

Play like that against Southampton and we should get a result.

Dave Lynch
157 Posted 07/01/2023 at 06:43:22
I saw nothing but a disorganised midfield, lack of fire power.
And poor player rotation regarding subs.
Frank Fearns
158 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:06:22
Dave @147 agree. It's backs to the wall, desperation stakes and clutching at straws.

As for Onana being outstanding, I must have been watching a different game. He constantly lost the ball, his passing is woeful and puts the defence under pressure. As usual, he picked up another yellow.

Is there light at the end of this very long dark tunnel??

Derek Knox
159 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:08:45
Kieran, regarding Bette Davies and his Ballroom Blitz in the Changing Room:

Lampard must have thought he would Waltz through the Field, do a Military Two Step, Twist and Shout, and Cha-Cha one in the Onion Bag.

He never even got a chance to do his normal Lambeth Walk ! 💃🩰🤔

Steve Brown
160 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:15:26
Pretty clear where 9500 passionate away supporters see the blame lying – ‘Sack the Board.'

As for Gary @ 1, you can criticise the manager no problem. But calling him a ‘bellend' and ‘tit' is out of order. Stop the personal abuse, as it is uncalled for even if you think he is a terrible manager.

Derek Thomas
161 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:21:53
There's too many we need to Foxtrot off because they can't pass water nevermind Poso Doble

Keiran @ 155(?) Holgate is a better... least worst right-back than Godfrey, who seems better at left-back.

Go the whole Ancelotti 'Wall of 4' – Holgate Coady, Tarkowski, Godfrey.

Jim Bennings
162 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:23:16
I think Onana had a bit more energy in the second half, first half I thought he was dreadful, however, his passing throughout was consistently bad in the amount of times simple passes went astray.

I actually can't believe how bad our two central midfielders are at passing a ball; they won back possession a lot last night but that was because they gave the ball away so many times.

All-in-all, we showed some effort, whether I should applaud that is debatable as they should show the effort every single game.

It would just be the same old Everton if we turn in a shit show against Southampton.

My concerns now are how long is Iwobi out for and the fact that our two full-backs are rat shit.

Mykolenko offers nothing going forward and defensively isn't actually great either.

Coleman can't play every week and as for Godfrey there, he's far too hotheaded and erratic, the lad is always a red card simmering underneath.

Tony Cheek
163 Posted 07/01/2023 at 07:29:49
Gueye and Iwobi must be the worst midfield players that have pulled the shirt on.
Steve Shave
164 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:13:29
Steve Brown @160, as per usual, you hit on an important point. So many on here and generally revert to toxic criticism to express their disappointment.

We are all disappointed, saddened and frustrated with the situation, there really is no need for this to be personal. The club is a mess from top to bottom, has been for years, directing abuse at individuals is short-sighted.

Some of the criticism on here for Onana for example is totally uncalled for. Yes, he is unpolished; yes, he can give the ball away but he is young, has great potential and I thought he really put in a shift yesterday, one of our better players on the day.

The injury to Alex is a blow, I am glad it's not a broken ankle. Looks like Doucoure won't be sold now and will instead leave on a free at the end of the season (another financial asset lost with no return). Anyone know how long Garner is out for? This could be his chance.

A spirited performance but that really is about as much enthusiasm as I can muster, Gray was very good and seems to have his Benitez form returning (why do 4-5 players never seem to hit form at the same time??) and we tried hard to get the ball forward.

As per usual though, our frailties were clear, we are toothless in the final 3rd, the final pass, the movement, options etc just aren't there. I am inclined to agree with many: despite his endeavours, Maupay is not Premier League standard.

Southampton a must-win game; fail and it's Goodbye Frank. If we do not pick up 3 points and fail to give him his marching orders, I fear we really will go down this season.

Danny Baily
165 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:21:42
Why is Lampard still in post? He should have gone weeks ago. It seems the board have learned nothing from last year.

Our rivals will be keen to see Lampard stay on.

Eddie Dunn
166 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:24:21
Now the dust has settled, it is painfully clear that the players gave everything they had on the night for the manager. They came up short because they made too many mistakes.

Rashford was always going to be the key to this game.

I suppose that the club will feel that they have to let Frank and his united group have a go at Southampton. They are not Man Utd and we can beat them. Anything other than a win and it's goodnight from me and goodnight from him.

Martin Mason
167 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:37:19
Really good points Steve @164
Darren Hind
168 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:39:50
"Bette" Davies ?????

What is it with this club ? We go out of the cup and all people can do is spout nonsense about a boy who didn't even play.

When Price came on and received nice plaudits recently, my thoughts went immediately to Anthony Gordon. A few short months ago, Goodison was praising him to the rafters. Even though only 21, he was carrying the fight against relegation.

Despite all the hysteria, Gordon earns £10k a week.. His agent (as all agents should do) tries to get him a bumper new contract. Suddenly Gordon (who still hasn't opened his mouth) is a jumped-up little greedy bastard.

Injury, sickness, suspension and poor form has blighted Gordon throughout the first few months of this season. Do we encourage and support the best youngster we have produce in a few years? No, we treat him as if he's killed a fucking priest.

Its never enough just to say he's not good enough if one of our young players breaks into the first team and fails to set the world alight, he has to get the treatment.

Do people not realise that Tom Davies can hear the abuse whenever he is asked to warm up? That he is terrified of making a mistake before he even steps on the pitch? Do they actually think Anthony Gordon doesn't read and hear the fuck-witted nonsense directed at him? Do they realise that they destroyed the confidence of Ross Barkley (the best player we have produced since Rooney) by raining hatred down on him. What? Because he couldn't defend?

This club is going to a place darker than hell because we have spent fortunes on poor players. Yet all we can do is hammer the boys who cost fuck all and earn the least... They whittle away at their confidence until they have got half the player they should have got. Then they can't understand why we don't produce anybody.

Who cares what Tom Davies puts on Twitter?

My advice to Price's arl fella would be to get him as far away from this club as he possibly can.

Jerome Shields
169 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:39:58
I thought Pickford, Onano and Gray where the only players that where up to Premier League standard..

Defensively, Godfrey could take the blame for all the goals. Really suckered on the first one, which could be seen a mile off coming. Second one, where was he? And the third one allowed the attacker to get in behind him.

He even had the temerity to give instructions to Pickford, before he decided to get after the attacker. Coady just plays deep and Tarkowski looked at times that he didn't know where he should be. As for a moving forward defensive line, it didn't exist.

Gueye in midfield has lost his pace and plays with his back to the opposition goal, at times I thought he was part of the opposition attack. Coleman the attacker tells all you need to know about the Everton forward line. At times he looked to have more pace and initiative that his younger colleagues.

Everton completely failed to move on in the second half, on any attacking outlets that had developed in the first half. Maupay cannot hold the ball up or lay the ball off. Calvert-Lewin is one-dimensional, if the play does not suit him he is anonymous. Mykolenko in the final third has no idea of definite play, seeming unprepared for attacking opportunities that he might get.

Expecting the lightweight McNeil to have any impact as a sub is just wishful thinking and Gordon was not much better. Recruitment has definitely not improved under Thelwell.

By the way, I didn't think much of Man Utd as a team. They were about half-a-step up on Everton. I am sure there is relief at Everton that they are out of the FA Cup so they can concentrate on the Premier League, because they are sure as hell going to need to concentrate.

Michael Lynch
170 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:42:13
I think we all agree that the team is not good enough, but I'm really not convinced there is any point in sacking Lampard. The spirit across the squad seems solid enough under him, so I doubt that a new manager will get more out of them.

The players are simply not good enough. It's not their fault, it's the fault of the owner, chairman, various directors of Football, Chief Executive Officer, and a collective failure of every manager we've had since David Moyes, for assembling such a mediocre group.

If we had eight or nine Premier League quality players in the squad, like Pickford, Calvert-Lewin at full fitness and Coleman at his peak, we'd be fine, but slowly we've lost them all and not brought in anyone good enough to replace them.

We've overpaid on big-name players and panic-bought in January windows. Although the current regime, including Lampard, must take some blame (McNeil, Maupay, Dele, overpaying for Onana), this is the culmination of years of bad decisions.

The worst element for me is the lack of young prospects coming through. Most sides take exciting young players and turn them into assets, both on the field and off the field (most clubs are selling clubs these days), but even our best player of the past few years, Richarlison, barely turned us a profit.

For me, we keep Lampard, get some stability, and we either go down or stay up. Sacking him will make very little difference except to disrupt the season, and kick the problem further down the road.

The problem is not the manager, it's the club. We need a reset. Whether that's in the Premier League or the Championship, it has to happen. We need a strategy. The club claims they're putting one into place, I have my doubts.

Keep Lampard, let him and his staff do their jobs, and get behind the team. But something much bigger than a change of manager is vital, and inevitable, for us to emerge from the gloom.

Danny Baily
171 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:45:29
Eddie 166,

The 'anything other than a win' criteria applied to the Wolves game. We need 7 (!) wins. Lampard really should go immediately.

Even from this position, it will be easier to stay up this season than it will be to win promotion over the next 5 or so years.

Roll the dice now and bring in an experienced manager. We've lost a week if the transfer window and the Brighton game, let's not lose any more. Give us a fighting chance.

Danny O’Neill
172 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:55:47
On my way home having escaped the inevitable Manchester rain this morning.

I don't really think I can add a lot to what's been said or what I said last night. We lack punch up front. Nothing we didn't or don't know.

We gave the ball away cheaply too often but fought to get it back. We pretty much matched United on their own patch and were still in the game right until the end. I still haven't watched the offside but assume it was one of those finger-nail or bootlace decisions with a red line. Regardless, the celebration was enjoyable for those few minutes. Well, it felt like minutes.

The supporters were with the team from start to finish and even at the end. To hear Evertonians still singing outside the ground after the match made even the likes of me have goosebumps. That tells you what they saw, even in defeat.

They deserve better. Something should be done about it, and I know my opinion on where that should be.

So, home to lick my wounds and get ready for Southampton.

Sam Hoare
173 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:57:01
I love that people are bashing Iwobi again! Know how many assists he has this season? He has 6.

Guess how many the entire rest of the squad has together? They have 6, and no other player has more than 1. And Iwobi doesn't even take free kicks or corners.

He's been literally our only creative player and his defensive stats and ground covered stats are amongst the highest too. He's not been great the last month but he deserves at least a little credit and is definitely one of our best outfield players this season, though a low bar admittedly.

Perhaps losing Iwobi may force us to play more directly as no one else can actually pass the ball properly and maybe that will help us as a team which is seemingly incapable of any possession. Expect lots of long balls and crosses for the next month, which will probably suit us much better.

Jerome Shields
174 Posted 07/01/2023 at 08:58:06
Actually, I think Lampard should stay on. A new manager after a few games would just bring us back to the same dross.

Unfortunately, it would be madness to keep again replace the manager with the root cause of the problems still in place. Certain relegation would result as those parties just keep letting standards slip.

Danny O’Neill
175 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:03:35
Until he got stretchered off, Sam, I didn't think Iwobi was having one of his better games. But when I think about it, he was trying to find the pass. The problem being what options he has in front of him.

Talking to a couple of United fans after the match, they were impressed with Demarai Gray and saw him as a threat. I thought he had a decent game, but I wouldn't like to single out or criticise too many last night. They played as a team.

Charles Brewer
176 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:06:47
I didn’t watch the game, I expected the result.

I think I’ve given up.

Jerome Shields
177 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:13:57
Charles #176,

I did and what I posted earlier is a true reflection of what I saw. Two teams, one worse than the other, run by bureaucracies well past their sell-by date.

In Everton's case, it wasn't up to much from the start anyway.

Allan Board
178 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:15:11
Watched all the game. Team that won played in 2nd gear, team that lost played as well as it can.

No histrionics from me and personal attacks on players or manager – I will save that for the wankers in the Board Room.

A feeling of resignation pervades Everton. One last trick is play the kids and go 4-4-2. Not as if it matters, the results could only improve.


Have a good weekend folks.

Jerome Shields
179 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:16:34
Iowbi was better than Doucoure and was missed after he went off.
Ian Riley
180 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:21:19
On the plus side, we can concentrate on the Top 4!
Trevor Peers
181 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:24:09
For those who say 'Why change the manager, it won't make any difference?' I'd argue we have changed the manager several times in the past and it did make the difference, we survived relegation.

This has again become a battle for our premiership survival if the defeats keep coming, I'd be surprised if Lampard survives until the end of January. His lack of leadership and inept tactics have took us to the brink, defeat against Southampton would be a calamity. We have to act and quickly.

But maybe this odious board has already given up and is waving the white flag, with no idea of who to turn to and will stick with Frank to the bitter end. If so, we've seen nothing yet, there will be some massive humiliations on the field before this horrendous season finally comes to an end.

Jerome Shields
182 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:27:42
Did anyone else notice the rigmarole preparation getting Everton subs ready to come on?
Alan Johnson
183 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:27:50
Can't see what sacking Lampard would achieve. This would create divisions. Plus, who the fuck would we be able to attract?

I think we've got to see it through to the bitter end. The media, for the first time, seem to have Kenwright sussed. The formation of the NSNOW group will become a powerful voice.

Paul Tran
184 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:29:22
We worked hard, but lost to the better side.

The passing was terrible, so often put the receiver under pressure. Onana drove the midfield well, Gray mixed skill with frustration, but ultimately lacked support. McNeil's confidence looks shot to pieces. Maupay was anonymous. The latter two players look like they regret moving here. I certainly do.

And yet when we put our mind to it, we bothered a decent United team. With better passing, who knows...

So what do we need? Someone in midfield who can pass the ball better, quicker and forwards. If we're going to counter-attack, we need the ball to stick further up the pitch, whether that's Calvert-Lewin and/or AN Other. If we're going to use Gray's pace, we need people to keep up with him.

The question is whether the manager can get the players to do that and bring the right additions to the squad?

Anthony Murphy
185 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:32:00
A lot of the concern can be eased if we are quick and decisive in the transfer market. If we can bring in two players who can walk into the first team and improve us, we've got a chance.

I'm worried that it's 7 Jan and nothingvhas happened – a couple of decent signings will lift us all (hopefully). I'm realistic in what we've got to spend – but why haven't loan deals been thrashed out in advance? The Ings enquiry could have happened weeks ago.

Tony Everan
186 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:33:34
It's a big gamble to keep Frank Lampard, and a another one to change him. Some of the names being bandied about do not inspire a lot of confidence that things will improve.

I think now it is looking very likely he will get the Southampton game. If we get a win, the board may well then stick rather than twist.

To save his skin, he now has to go 4-5-1 and focus on being very hard to beat whilst retaining the ability nick a goal, the same as what Ancelotti was doing two or three years ago. Also the same tactic that any new manager would be likely to employ. He has to forget two wingers and leaving the midfield wide open, there's not enough threat or goals in the front line to play that way.

I think he is the luckiest manager alive to be given so long with such unacceptably poor results over a long period. Along with the added bonus of a 6-week break to sort the poor form and tactical approach out.

He's now 4 or 5 points worse off than the burnt-at-the-stake Benitez, and to still be in the game with a win against Southampton is incredible. Was his mother a cat?

It just shows that talking a good game can buy a manager time with the fan base as well as the board. Regardless of the hard reality of what the lack of goals, poor tactics and game management, 19% win rate, one win in 12 matches, league position or cup exits say.

I'm guilty too of still wanting to back him and hope he comes good. But someone yesterday mentioned “The Emperor's New Clothes” syndrome is at play here, ie, unwillingness to see the obvious.

Danny O’Neill
187 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:36:42
I think you capture the ambition of the board right there, Trevor. Premier League survival and self-preservation rather than a vision and plan for future success.

We've been run on a day-to-day basis rather than thinking about where we want to be in 5 years time.

I honestly don't care if we sack or keep Lampard. I'm fed up of changing managers, but that is not the problem with our club.

I just want us to have a plan to compete on a level that a club of Everton's stature and fanbase deserves. I might have Royal Blue tinted glasses, but if you look at what Man City have achieved, our potential is massive and could surpass that.

Yes, all laugh at me — but I believe it.

Mark Murphy
188 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:37:47
I agree with Darren about the stick some players get being detrimental to their confidence but, as someone who, due to my South East location, mainly gets to away games, I can honestly say not a single one of those players gets stick prematch or during.

Yes, we hammered them after the game at Brentford last season, the first time I have ever witnessed that btw, but even then we were urging them on until the whistle blew.

Last night on the live forum I said I thought Mykolenko had been poor lately and Onana (first half) wasn't what I had hoped, but there's no way I'd shout that in the faces of Tom Davies, Anthony Gordon et al at a match.

I'm a supporter, not an underminer. Deep down I think we're doomed but I'll be supporting the players and whoever ends up managing them (so long as it's not Benitez or, shudder, Gerrard) for the rest of this season.

I've got a front-row seat at West Ham and I will be positive from start to finish. If they perform as we hope they'll get applause. If they give anything but their best, they'll know our displeasure. But before and during a game is not the time to have a go at any of them – even Maupay…

Gerry Quinn
189 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:53:09
Not sure if the Ings transfer would ever take place – surely Villa would want us to continue to struggle strikerless?

Despite his background, I would jump at him joining us – same as Coady – a 100% effort player.

Tony Mace
190 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:53:58
Those blaming Godfrey need to get a grip.

Their 1st goal, Tarkowski carelessly loses the ball just inside their half then does a slow jog back towards our goal.

Tarkowski could have and should have easily been there to clear the Rashford cross away.

Anthony Hawkins
191 Posted 07/01/2023 at 09:56:13
I understand and get those calling for a new manager. The bounce will help the team avoid relegation but it lacks in the long term and avoids resolving the more critical issue of why do we continue to drop down the Premier League?

Yes, we'll step up for a few games but that's just driving the work force harder rather than bringing in the right people for the right roles. That's where the issue is.

Mick O'Malley
192 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:00:08
I thought Onana played well last night, he did give the ball away but at least he was trying to be positive instead of shitting out and passing backwards all the time. He gets stuck in, he physical, and don't forget he's only 21, he has played about 20 first-team games. He'll do for me, he'll be a fine player.

I agree with Darren about Ross Barkley as well, the best player we've produced for years and he got hammered. I'd have welcomed him back in the summer, he'd have done a job for us,

Mykolenko is coming in for stick now, when it was Godfrey last night who stunk the gaff out. Iwobi is another who was getting lauded but he's had a few mediocre games and now he is shit. One thing is for sure: if he is out for any stretch of time, we'll miss him definitely

Paul Smith
193 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:05:21
So Frank gets more time and we get to sit in angst for the next week. His record is abysmal, no getting away from it, but the players love him and lots of the fan base.

Twitter is alive with fan bios with pics of Kenwright on them (I shit you not) and Mr Bellew is protecting his hero. What a mess.

If we stay up I believe the status quo will remain with the board intact until we can be sold and if we drop, we become irrelevant in the context of the footballing paradigm I've known all of my 50 years.

I feel more prepared for relegation this season, death by a thousand incompetent transfer windows and new grounds to visit. Let's hope it doesn't happen and Lampard can turn it around.

Brock moment last night anyone? I'm not hopeful but I think he's earned the Saints game.

Colin Glassar
194 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:10:40
The manager and the players might be crap but let's not take our eyes off the real culprits here – Moshiri, Kenwright and the incompetent bunch of hangers-on who have led us almost to the point of no return.

They are the ones who hired the managers, negotiated the deals, trampled over our motto, disrespect the fans, bled the club dry and turned us into a laughing stock.

We can play all the fantasy football we want but, as long as Moshiri and co are in charge, this nightmare will continue. These people will not change or backdown. They have no shame.

Now I know what Paul Merson meant when he was told Moshiri was buying Everton.

Ian Riley
195 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:16:32
I personally believe changing management has kept us in the Premier League.

If (and it's probable) relegation comes, it won't be a shock or devastation. Heartbreaking yes because it's been the slow death battling for improvement and expectation as fans.

Relegation couldn't come at a worse time with the stadium and wage bill we have. The next generation of Evertonians may only see Championship or League One football for years. The club is in the Bottom 3 and yes, a new manager may still relegate us but we must try something to stay up.

Seriously, all Evertonians, look after your health. For those going, week-in & week-out, this is a very stressful time. It's more than football, our club, but your personal health is worth more. How I long for boring mid-table finishes!

Chris Jenkins
196 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:20:05
I would argue that the barrage of criticism aimed at Frank Lampard is mainly unjustified. People very easily forget that, in a few short months last year he managed to turn things around and avoid relegation which was looking increasingly likely under Benitez.

Many contributors to these columns have criticised the quality of signings since Frank was appointed without any evidence that he was the prime mover behind these acquisitions.

It is perfectly conceivable that he identified the positions which needed strengthening and it was Thelwell who chose the players. The finance available for strengthening the team, by all accounts, was very limited.

Similarly the many critics of Bill Kenwright who attribute the club's present precarious position entirely to him have short memories. It was Kenwright who rescued the club from the clutches of Peter Johnson. It is well documented that, at significant personal risk, he mortgaged himself very heavily to help find a significant part of the funds to pay Johnson off.

The partnership which Kenwright formed with David Moyes saw the club punching well above its weight for many years despite very little finance being available for improving the playing staff.

Yes, of course he's made mistakes, he's only human like the rest of us but much of the criticism, including the minority Bastille mob type comments and calls for his head, is unfair and unjustified.

I very much hope that Frank Lampard is given significant funds during this window, is able to bring in his own choice of quality strikers and get the club moving back up the table. I feel sure that he has the required ability and that, with a fair wind and the necessary slice of luck, he can go on to be a very successful Everton manager.

If, however, Frank is removed, the choice of replacement will be crucially important. For experience and ability to steady the ship, arguably the best choice would be David Moyes.

For youth and hopefully the future, a bold appointment would be former blue, Steven Schumacher, who is currently doing a very impressive job at Plymouth Argyle.

If a new manager is appointed, that person must insist that the Director of Football position at the club is ditched; it has been an unmitigated disaster thus far.

Dave Williams
197 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:20:59
Darren #168 what a cracking post!

Everton fans have been that way for all of the 60 years I have been going – the abuse the likes of Terry Darracott used to get, Joe Royle in his early days and even the great Colin Harvey – it's absolutely incredible how stupid some people can be.

They only go to the game to take out their frustrations on young local lads who need encouragement, not abuse. Barkley is the prime example of a player who was destroyed by his own fans.

Last night was much better in that we tried hard and were unlucky. Onana is starting to develop with good games against both Manchester clubs – it's perhaps telling that he missed the Brighton game.

Gray is also coming into form after a long period of indifferent displays and Maupay wasn't bad either.

Regardless of what we feel, we have to keep going with encouragement as that's the way we will get out of this. Turning on the players, however understandable that may be at times, will take us down.

Daniel Thomas
198 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:24:40
Darren 168.

I rarely comment but you're absolutely spot on. And let's face it, we've seen a few kids make that decision to leave over the last few years and who could blame them?

Club is in the mud.

Martin Mason
199 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:24:44
Chris @196,

A very courageous post, Prime Minister. You raise a lot of very good points.

Brian Harrison
200 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:26:41
As the old saying goes, "If you can't be good, be lucky"! Sadly, Frank is neither good nor lucky.

I am sure if this was a personality contest, everybody would vote to keep Frank in charge, but sadly it's not and football is a results business and sadly Frank's results are amongst the worst of any Everton manager ever.

He looks totally bereft of any ideas on how to set this side up, his fall-back position is play 8 men behind the ball and hope we somehow score at the other end.

I would say that I have no guarantee that whoever they bring in will keep us up, but to leave Frank in charge given his appalling win ratio would be bordering on wilful neglect.

They must make the change this weekend which would give the new man time to asses his squad and bring in some players before the window closes in 24 days.

Because of the cost of sacking Frank and his coaches, I don't expect that we will be trying to get a manager already in a job as that will take more time and money that we don't have.

Just going back to the game, I have been saying for weeks I would like to see Demarai Gray play in the more central role he played last night. He has pace and can finish and for me would be ideal in Iwobi's position.

Seeing Frank is reluctant to play Maupay alongside Calvert-Lewin, I could even see Gray playing up alongside Calvert-Lewin as a possibility.

Also, I thought it strange to take off Coleman and bring on Gordon and play him at full-back, as I didn't see him in Man Utd's half at all when he came on… yet more muddled thinking from Frank.

Martin Mason
201 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:27:39
Mark @188,

Good post, absolutely spot on.

Eddie Dunn
202 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:32:55
Danny Baily @171.

Mate, I was calling for Frank to go before the World Cup – I am merely trying to second-guess our owner and board.

Frank is a pathetic sight, he has tried everything and he has the players giving it all but to no avail.

He naturally avoided getting sucked into the "Sack the Board" sentiments but what he is doing is trying to get the fans behind him, which is obviously the right thing to do if he is to stay in charge for Southhampton.

The cynic in me says that Frank is desperately trying to absolve himself of blame. We have heard that he thought we would be in for another struggle this season.

We have also heard him tell us that there is no point just buying more average players (even though he has already overseen such moves with Maupay and McNeil).

The midfield is a problem. Onana played well last night but Gana was dreadful. Doucoure is a body, nothing more. How we miss young Garner.

Lampard continues to baffle me with his selections and subs.
I am sure that a different coach could get these lads in a better shape with more threat.

I recall Gordon on the left for the England Under-21s a few months back and he looked terrific. He was leaving defenders for dead and pinging in some good crosses.

Going back to the manager, Frank is mostly concerned about his reputation. It is convenient for him that the fans blame the owner or the board and his old England chums in the media are starting to peddle that story.

We all know that it is at the heart of our problems but the manager has been responsible for some very poor tactics, and he has dogmatically stuck to methods that have been proven to be flawed time after time.

The guy is out of ideas and, as much as he may be liked by his players, he just hasn't got a clue how to sort out this mess.

Then we have Coady, a player on loan, once again talking on behalf of the team. Most odd.

The players showed enough last night to suggest we can survive, in fact, if we had won, I would be more worried for the Southampton game.

He will be in charge for that one but it looks like he is on a game-by-game arrangement from now on.

Raymond Fox
203 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:42:56
Darren @168,

I agree, the abuse I hear from 'supporters' near me is appalling in some games. Most of the time, they haven't a clue what they're watching in any case.

It's one of the reasons the comments on this site often make me angry, some delight in picking on the same players regardless of their performances.

As for where we are now, we most definitely need as many reinforcements that we can get, starting with Ings — he's not the greatest but is probably as good as we can find.

Tony Abrahams
204 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:45:22
Some sensible thoughts, considering our position, with the pros & cons of whether to stick with the manager or relieve him of his duties, only offering despair.

The effort was there. I don't watch warm-ups but, watching the players doing little sprints in the corner, every single player looked ready and focused. The commitment was there, and the lack of quality was also there.

The players had a go last night and looked to be playing for each other, but (there is always a but and that but is) can this manager get enough out of these players to preserve our Premier League future?

Depending on the formation, we need a good left wingback, unless we change to play 4-5-1. The shouts for 4-4-2 don't make sense to me; casting my mind back to how Ancelotti, lost virtually every time he played this system, and against some very poor opposition as well.

Coady plays very deep, so unless we continuously drop off, teams just play easily around us. We definitely need another forward and also a midfielder who wants to get on the ball to try and make everyone else play.

Confidence is massive and the players look more confident playing on the counter-attack. Although it's clear watching Everton that not many of our squad actually like having the football at their feet.

I think a manager should go when it's clear he hasn't got a clue or he's lost his players but this didn't look like it was the case either last night or against Man City.

I also think a manager should go if he's tactically naive or not getting the best out of his players, which has definitely been the case in a lot of our games this season.

You do wonder about the players though, because they look like they have understood their roles during the two games in Manchester, but they looked lost and bereft of ideas against Brighton.

If the players had any personal initiative, then maybe some of them could have told the manager that his wide-open tactics just don't suit them. This leads me to believe they are a fragile bunch or maybe they are just getting mismanaged.

These are the chronicles of a schizophrenic Evertonian!

Eddie Dunn
205 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:45:27

I agree with you on the ridiculous criticism of Davies, and others but it isn't just Everton where this happens.

I have been to Spurs a few times (a mate has tickets there) and the same moaners moan at the same targets every home game there. I think it happens at every ground.

Some people seem to go to the game just to vent their anger.
Over the years at Goodison, that groan from the crowd when a pass was hit too long was always enough for a player to get the message. However, booing a lad as he comes on is rude and detrimental to the cause.

In fairness to the match-going public, there is always applause for a good tackle or a tidy pass. You only have to read individual assessments of the players on here to see just how differently we all see a game.

Peter Moore
206 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:45:28
We are not dead yet, there are reasons to keep the faith.

Gray finding form. Calvert-Lewin back. we need to add depth to the front line for sure in case Calvert-Lewin breaks down again obviously, but Gordon can't get worse and has talent in spades too.

Calvert-Lewin is needed massively for the wingers to have a productive target. Our recent performances in Manchester need to be produced at home and bingo, we are in business.

We must prevail against Saints, obviously. The lads seemed unable to put in a proper shift against Brighton after the massive effort against Man City. Now there is a week before the next match, there is no reason not to be sharp and firing for the whole match.

With the crowd behind the lads, we can turn this ship around. COYB.

Julian Exshaw
207 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:48:36
Whoever is to blame, our season is as good as over before the Christmas tree has had time to get to know his mates at the recycling centre.

This is not a unique situation, it's becoming a habit. The board, the management and the players are all to blame to an extent, all culpable for letting down those magnificent fans who give 100% loyalty, week-in & week-out.

There was effort last night, as there was against City, but it is sporadic. What we have lacked for the last 10 years is consistency in the positive sense. Time for collective action from all three parties!!

Chris Jenkins
208 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:55:44
Martin @199,

Many thanks for your support. I've always tried my best to present an impartial view despite attracting much criticism over the years!!

Colin Glassar
209 Posted 07/01/2023 at 10:57:22

I went to my first game at Goodison when I was 7 or 8. The vitriol and abuse aimed at the likes of Young, Husband, Ball and Co was so bad, my dad told me to put my fingers in my ears and just watch the game (we won 2-0 I think).

Abuse aimed at players is nothing new. It's not to be condoned but it's part and parcel of the game and always has been and will continue to be so.

I have the enduring memory of some overweight fella screaming at Alan Ball to “Get a move on, you fucking useless ginger dwarf”!!

Ball was and is my hero but that didn't stop that bugger from ruining my big day out.

Nick Page
210 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:00:43
James Newcombe
211 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:04:36
Yes, we played better, the players were trying. But how many times in recent years have we turned up for the big teams; and then completely folded when expected to get a result?

No wonder we're all nuts. Three wins all season – something has to change, and quick.

Tony Hill
212 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:06:19
That disallowed goal was beautifully worked. If Gray can reignite himself, then so can other players and so can we.

I agree with Dave @197, despite my own miserable contribution after the game on this thread. We cannot surrender or wallow in self-pity – I was ranting, aged 75, to anyone who'd listen last night (no-one) and swearing, for the umpteenth time down the decades, that I wouldn't be renewing my season ticket.

I would stick with this manager and we as fans must wake up at Goodison. We've reverted to morgue mode and that isn't good enough.

We can do it. I thought there was silver within the dross last night.

Gary Johnson
213 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:07:32
Why are so many people so blind that they think that two Manchester-based defend-for-your-life cup games are somehow indicative of a sunny upside?

These fans are why our board get away with it. Their only ambition is to not be embarrassed… and when they are embarrassed (Brighton) they hum a tune in their heads and tink (sic) happy toughts (sic).

The malaise is from the very top, to these fans at the bottom… Personally, I already think it's too late, and this time next year we could be looking over our shoulder towards League One.

As we do, there'll still be Everton fans saying “but we put in a great effort at QPR. But for some luck, we might have got a draw. The effort from the players did not deserve the 1-4 scoreline at all, and shows they are right behind the manager Wilder.”

Andy Crooks
214 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:12:06
Darren Hind,

I think you raise a few interesting points. Whether you earn £200 a week or £20k, abuse is morale-sapping.

No one gets to be a Premier League footballer without immense ability, dedication and commitment. Some of these players are playing shite but they're not shite players. We expect them to be like machines and they aren't.

This team are massively underperforming. Are they complacent? Is their confidence shot? Are they fit enough or being used in their best position? Only the coach knows that and whatever the key is, he's not finding it.

There was huge effort last night, they played for Frank and it wasn't enough. Time to roll the dice again.

Christine Foster
215 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:19:33
Darren @168,

I ccouldn't agree with you more. But it's not just homegrown talent (jealousy or tall poppy syndrome), they get slaughtered because we didn't pay a king's ransom for them, so they must be crap!

No, there is an element of supporters in our club (probably in every club) who will be abusive to any or every player at some point. Over the years, we have grown accustomed to these boo boys... because nothing is ever good enough for them.

Barkley was treated disgracefully by Koeman, will the truth come out about his leaving like Rooney? Another vilified, or James Rodriguez, Lucas Digne, Richarlison, Tony Hibbert, the list goes on...

I'm fed up reading about posts that are abusive to individuals without justification... or managers for that matter, Darren, they can't all have been solely responsible for every team, for every match.

They are responsible for getting the best out of what we got. That's the real argument. If we haven't got players good enough, then you can only make a team sing in tune infrequently.

But we can't let the fuckwits called a board off the hook – spent the money but shot the manager – every time. So the question could be: Who should they have kept and why?

How can we make people see or care just how much they can impact players? Like I said on another thread, I support the team, the players and the manager. I just wish everybody could see how important it is to bring Simms and Price through...

Players deserve criticism when they play poorly, but not abuse.

Ernie Baywood
216 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:23:12
Completely agree with Darren. I see Davies blamed regardless of how he plays (or even when he doesn't play). This is a lad who represented England at every age group. We put him in the first team and took an instinctive footballer and made him worse.

Ross Barkley remains a tragedy for me. He was a unique player who, for some reason, the supporters couldn't fathom wasn't smashing into challenges. Because that's what a crop-haired scouser does right?

I said on here for a long time that he should leave the club. I think he persisted with us for too long.

I think Gordon was overvalued by Chelsea (or the media) but he's still one of the most effective players in the squad. We need this lad feeling confident – not anxious.

Tony Abrahams
217 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:27:11
How many of us think we could go into Finch Farm and start organizing the players to go out and play and become a better team? The reality is so much different, especially when we have such a very unbalanced squad.

Most footballers don't ever think it's really their fault; they can always find someone else to blame. This is the harsh reality, especially when they are being paid an absolute fortune and will never have a financial worry in their lives.

We have accused them of most things but they do look to be trying, although even with the brilliant support they received last season, they only just about survived.

We are at the minute a football club with only one plan. Get to the new Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock and everything will be alright. This might finally see us get rid of Bill Kenwright but it's the Laurel & Hardy tune that is resonating in my brain.

Tony Abrahams
218 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:28:56
Evertonians destroyed Ross Barkley now?

I'm lost.

Darren Hind
219 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:32:57
I regretted that post, Dave. When I looked at the name of the poster who called Tom Davies "Bette", I tried to delete it but it was too late.

Derek may tell the most awful jokes, but I don't believe him to be a spiteful man. He was just trying to lighten the mood. Apologies, Derek.

The sentiment stands though. I knew at least one person was going to have a go at Tom Davies – even though he didn't play – and the stick our boys have taken down the years has had me on the verge of walking away from this club on several occasions.


You may be right, but I only care about Everton. I only ever hear other crowds sing "He's one of our own" about their youngsters... We seem to want to destroy ours from the off.

Anyway that's all by the by. I saw signs of improvement last night, but we have been here before.

My brother (a Kopite) told me Roy Keane said live on television that Everton need to find some inspiration from somewhere soon because we have "Too many bad, bad, bad, players".

He may have been winding me up, but I'm feeling really quite disconsolate this morning.

Paul Tran
220 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:38:03
I'm sure I learnt most of my swear words watching us as a little boy in the early 70s, so the criticism isn't new. Neither is it confined to us.

What has got worse is the abuse on social media. I left Twitter recently because of the increase in blowhard idiots of all views. I noticed that Everton Twitter has a competitive sense of performative outrage, with apparent adults vying to be the most ashamed, humiliated, etc.

The local lads always, in my view, give their best, are often moved from one role to another to fill in for the inadequacies of their expensive colleagues and are often overlooked by numerous managers desperate to show their expensive purchases really are worth it.

They are often overhyped by the same people who criticise them. Nothing wrong with being a good squad player. Barkley was a talented kid who suffered from poor decision-making on the pitch. Gordon is a promising young kid having a dip in form, like they all do, Davies is at least a good squad player, mucked around by different coaches sticking him in different roles.

All players should be praised or criticised on performance, the abuse just reflects on the individuals dishing it out. Doesn't help anyone.

Tony Hill
221 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:38:24
The Board certainly needs to go but the priority is the team surviving this season. If we are relegated, then the club will drift away entirely.

Some (probably now the majority) would get rid of Lampard; some would not. An overwhelming majority wants the Board out, but it will not be gone this season, whether we like it or not.

No-one thinks the team has been anything other than a massive disappointment but let's concentrate on the prime objective; the wider structural issues, for the moment, are secondary.

Darren Hind
222 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:40:35

"Or managers for that matter, Darren."

It'a fair cop, Guv. Duly reprimanded.

Jim Wilson
223 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:43:14
Totally agree, Ernie @ 216,

Davies was a great prospect. His performance in the Man City 4-0 game showed exactly who he was: an attacking midfielder, but a succession of idiotic managers have thought he could be a ball winner, a holding midfielder or something else that he definitely is not.

Barkley started off as a good passing ball winner and Martinez turned him into an effective No 10. At some point, we could have used him in either position. But Barkley really did need to be managed and handled well but all Koeman did was alienate him. The club looked on and did nothing to protect Barkley from a manager who was eventually sacked.

Gordon undoubtedly has a lot of quality but, at the moment, it looks like we are failing to nurture his promise and turn him into the player he could be.

At some point, the supporters should realise something is very wrong with management that ruins all the good prospects that come through the ranks and do not get the best out of the decent players we sign.

It is all about bad management and I get fed up of having to point out the obvious.

Tony Abrahams
224 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:45:38
Ernie, come on, mate... Ross left Everton, but still hasn't done much for a kid with so much talent. A crop-haired scouser should do what he's good at and it certainly wasn't his game to be flying into tackles just because he's got a skinhead.

Play to your strengths and play to the best of your ability is alls that's required of any footballer. For all Ross Barkley's undoubted talent, how many times did you even remotely see him trying to take the game by the scruff of its neck?

I saw Ross Barkley score some wonderful goals, and I saw Ross Barkley do some wonderful things, but he mostly played in snatches, rarely played for 90 minutes, and never had two good games on the spin.

I'm aware we all see a different game, but I remember the ovation Barkley got off Evertonians the week after he had deservedly taken a smack in town. When players play well, they get plaudits, and when players play shite, they get stick.

The only player I ever winced at getting stick was my all-time favourite Everton player, and the stick got worse, because his greatest ever talent was actually working against him, imo.

Peter Reid, the epitome of a very brave footballer, was playing very poorly. His game was gone, but it didn't stop him looking for the ball, only to give it away again, making things even worse. I thought his honesty was working against him, but as I said, we all see a different game.

Matt Henderson
225 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:49:46
Sport is littered with young players who come in and perform well for a period and then fizzle out to nothing.

If you are good enough to make the grade but then don't go on to any sustained success, it can be down to a number of factors but, in my view, it's mainly down to the player not being good enough.

Anyone can make excuses for themselves. It's not like many of our failed youngsters go on to be successes elsewhere.

Paul Tran
226 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:50:35
Darren #219,

Keane did say that last night. Said the same in the run-in last season, too. I know exactly what he means, I'm not sure I'd like to be in the trenches with most of them.

He also said at half-time that we should stick to keeping it tight and counter-attacking, because the danger is 'they start thinking they're better than they are'. I agreed with that as well, Hope someone points it out to Frank

Eddie Dunn
227 Posted 07/01/2023 at 11:57:53
As the fanbase looks on, behind the scenes there must be plenty of activity.

Frank said last night that he speaks to the owner and board regularly. He therefore doesn't need to seek public reassurance.

So we have Frank looking after his own reputation, his main priority, apart from winning some games and saving us from the drop, is to protect his own legacy as a credible manager.

Then we obviously have Mr Moshiri who is desperate to spend as little as possible whilst trying to continue the building of the stadium and thus maintaining the sell-on value of EFC. His priority is to stay in the Premier League but to reduce expenditure to the minimum.

Then we have Bill Kenwright, who wants to keep his place as Chairman and to see us in the new stadium before stepping aside. He will be as desperate as any of us to stay in the Premier League but also aware of the financial constraints.

The rest of the board don't warrant a mention as they are mere puppets.

The owner and the board are being identified by fans and some of Frank's media friends as the main reason for our predicament.

However Bill Kenwright will, no doubt have all of his contacts placing any blame on the previous structure, directors of football, the interfering of the owner or the responsibility of the manager.

So Frank needs results, to stay in the job, and he needs to display that he hasn't been backed in the market.

Meanwhile, the board and owner must feel like they have to hold back on spending until they see Frank beat Southampton or the new incumbent will have no input on incoming players.

So we have an impasse mostly due to financial reasons; there is our dilemma.

So, if we beat Southampton, will we suddenly see some new faces?

Danny O’Neill
228 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:20:24
This is a mostly very balanced thread on the back of another defeat. I don't like the cheap shot at the supporters if I'm being honest, so I'll say that without wanting to be antagonistic.

We all criticise individual players for performances. We praise them for good ones. We all defend them if we can see something and want them to succeed.

We criticise managers for tactics and formations, but want them to succeed.

We have opinions on our understanding of the game. Which inevitably differ.

I'm not sure how Tom Davies came into the conversation. Unless my eyes are getting that bad or I was that far away from the pitch, I don't remember him being on it.

Barkley? A frustrating enigma in my view. Talent in abundance but not coached properly to develop the potential. Yes, the dysfunction at Everton probably didn't help, but he didn't help himself from what I read and understand.

Failed to establish himself at Chelsea, and Villa soon realised he wasn't what it said on the tin and put him on the bench to gather dust. I don't believe it's going particularly well at Nice either. Genuine shame and waste of talent.

Criticism of players, as mentioned above, is not a new phenomenon.

My best childhood friend and fellow season ticket holder at the time used to wait to have his "Sheedy, you lazy bastard" moment and comment about him being more worried about keeping his hair in place on a frequent basis. He loved Everton unreservedly and followed them everywhere. But he had a thing about Sheedy.

There was someone last night about 2 rows from me who, despite the vast majority positive support, couldn't wait to get stuck into Mykolenko.

I praise, criticise and judge players and managers as we all do. Nothing new and depends on how we see the game.

Dave Abrahams
229 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:22:57
I watched Onana closely during the game and it completely baffles me the praise he got for the way he played last night, or in any game he has played for Everton to be honest.

He did a few good things and just as many poor things. When he was in the game, he never plays the whole game which lasts for 90 minutes plus. He comes and goes and watches the play pass him by.

And the tackles he makes, and is rightly booked for, sliding in on the floor – doesn't anyone at Finch Farm tell him to stay on his feet and tackle like a man? He's been doing those tackles since he got here and booked six times for them.

He's still making 5- and 6-yard sideways and backwards passes and looking like a traffic copper directing cars, pointing to the player who receives the pass what to do with the ball… why doesn't he just fuckin' do it himself/.

It's quite possible it's me not seeing Onana in a more favourable light. I'll have to watch him more closely in the future!!

Bob Carlton
230 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:23:34
Allowing Frank one more game against Southampton will tell us nothing we don't already know about his managerial ability. 3 league wins in 18 games is uncomfortable reading.

If we win, does that save his job?
If we lose, does that make his position untenable?
If we draw, are we back to where we are today?

Within the next 48 hours, the club must back Frank until the end of the season (to provide managerial stability) or replace him to give a new manager as much time as possible to improve our results.

Delaying the decision for another week is weak management and is not acceptable.

Mark Ryan
231 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:27:35
Will he play Simms against Southampton? Will he fuck. Will he even bring him on? We know he won't.

Will Seamus struggle to keep up? Yes. Will he try his hardest not to let the team down? Of course.

Will Doucoure miss-pass his passes? Yes.

There will be nothing new against Southampton for us to see. Will we be willing them? Of course we will.

Can we hope? Always!!!


Danny O’Neill
232 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:31:07
Darren, I read that this morning. He (Roy Keane) was damning. Now I know not all, myself included, agree with him but he called out that a lot of our players are not top flight standard.

Dave Abrahams, our midfield was wide open and a lot of the time our centre-backs wide apart. Gaps everywhere.

But we recovered well and Man Utd weren't much better. They just had enough quality to win it.

Kevin Molloy
233 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:33:54
If Frank is allowed on the back of last night to stick around for the Southampton game, then the last chance we have to change things around will be gone.

I must admit I thought there would have been an announcement by now. The people running this club are even worse than I thought. Looks like Frank is going to be given up to the West Ham game, and then get sacked.

So we will literally be scrambling around in the last week of the window for a new manager, who will have no opportunity to make any changes. The lack of planning this time I think will be fatal.

Jim Wilson
234 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:45:01
Back on topic:

We got beat 3-1 by a United team that didn't get out of second gear. We were plucky and didn't get any breaks, the players gave their all for Lampard but we came up short.

The manager is changing systems now to try and find a way forward. It is getting desperate and nothing changes, we get beat.

The two Bournemouth games should have been the wake-up call. The planning for those games failed miserably. That should have been the end for Lampard. We had won 3 league games only.

After the restart, the so called reset, a game against a poor Wolves team ended in defeat.

A good performance v City when for once we rode our luck was totally ruined by another disaster v Brighton.

And the best we can do now is a 3-1 defeat v Man Utd.

We remain with 3 wins in the league and we now have a horrible nerve wracking game against the bottom club looming. Southampton have already bought a forward to help their plight.

The stark reality is we need another 8 or 9 wins for safety and the one thing Lampard can't do is get us to win. Next week, I will be amazed if we beat Southampton.

We need a manager who stops pissing about with 3-5-2 and 4-3-3 formations that do not get us the wins we need.

We need a manager who can see what we need and that is a much stronger midfield that will stop teams over-running us in this area of the field. We need to stop teams getting a grip on the game.

Our situation is exactly the same as when Joe Royle took over from Mike Walker's no-hopers. First thing he did was put numbers in midfield and we started to get the better of most teams.

We didn't have one class midfielder but as a unit we were strong and effective.

Roy Evans complained about us when we played a decent Liverpool team because we stifled their midfield and stopped them from playing.

A strong midfield with a back 4 is the way forward. I would bet my house on it! Keep the opposition at arm's length and do not let them cause problems in the areas that can harm you.

To stay up we need:

A new manager

A hard-working forward who can score

A midfield general to play with Gueye and a midfielder to cover for Gueye if he gets injured. (We are in real trouble at the moment if Gueye got injured.)

A right-back would also be handy because Patterson just seems to be injury prone. A utility player like Phil Neville would be very handy.

Christy Ring
235 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:46:46
Agree with Darren but, in my opinion, Koeman is the reason Barkley left our club.

Whether you liked him or not, he always looked for the ball driving us forward, which we are lacking now, but Koeman used him as his scapegoat.

Tony Abrahams
236 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:46:49
If saying he's a big boy is somehow protecting himself, then I must be misunderstanding something, but I personally think that only one thing is going to protect Frank Lampard's credibility as a competent football manager, and that is by winning a lot more games.

I'm not sure if he will be here next week, but he doesn't seem to be complaining about having to work for one of the most dysfunctional football clubs in the league, so maybe this might buy him some time.

Christopher Timmins
237 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:50:26
We are caught between a rock and a hard place this morning. We have an immediate short-term issue: Do we back or sack the incumbent manager?

We also have a massive short- to medium-term problem: How do we make the necessary changes at Board level in order to start to turn us into a functional organisation.

For what it's worth, neither the owner, chairman nor board of directors should have any say in making the call on the managerial situation, that decision should fall squarely at the door of the DoF, end of story.

Far too many bad decisions have been made by the owner, chairman and board of directors since Moyes departed to allow them to make the call. Their performance in hiring and firing has been an absolute joke.

With regards to the performance last night and its implications for the current manager, I think that on balance the current manager is now more likely than not to lead us into the game against Southampton next weekend.

If the current manager stays in situ, I hope that he sticks with a 5-3-2 formation, allows Gray free reign up front, but alternates the wing-backs to take account of the opposition. We simply can't have both Coleman and Mykolenko starting next weekend, Gordon and or McNeil must start.

Finally, how do I go about becoming a member of the NSNOW Protest Group?

Jim Wilson
238 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:51:41
Spot on, Christy @ 235.
Tony Abrahams
239 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:56:22
I never had it in me to go last night, Danny, and I also expected Manchester United to cause us a lot more problems than Manchester City because I think they have got more players who like to get ahead of the ball.

But the concerning thing is when you talk about massive gaps; this tells me that whoever manages Everton has got to work on and then stick to a rigid system.

Sign a couple of players, stick to a system that suits the squad, work harder, get better, gain more confidence, and then hopefully go on to the next stage.

Sounds easy, doesn't it? If only.

Jim Wilson
240 Posted 07/01/2023 at 12:57:36
Christopher @237

"I hope that he sticks with a 5-3-2 formation, allows Gray free reign up front, but alternates the wing backs to take account of the opposition. We simply can't have both Coleman and Myko starting next weekend, Gordon and or McNeil must start."

You have just explained why we can't have a 5-3-2 system!

We don't have the players who are natural wing-backs.

We need the extra man in midfield. 4-4-2 or 4-5-1 is the way forward.

Matt Henderson
241 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:21:09
Overall, my view is that Frank is far from our only, or our biggest problem, but he is one of our problems as there seems to be zero improvement in the team from last season and no discernible plan of how he is trying to play.

Last night, because we tried hard, we see improvements. That's how poor we've been and how low the bar of expectation has fallen. Let's see how we get on in the next few games where we need results regardless of anything else.

The Board did themselves a favour last season by employing Rafa as he acted as a lightning rod for all the criticism that should have been directed at them.

This season the media are finally cottoning on more widely where the failure of the club lies but this won't make any difference unless the owner finally grows a pair, takes an interest, and employs some top-notch executives with a proven track record at the top of the club…. or sells.

Any of these changes will also have little impact on this season but hopefully it would mean we start bottoming out at least (and turning things around).

If things at the top of the club stay as they are, we will continue on the same trend we've been on for a number of years – getting worse and worse each season – and it could end up far worse than just relegation to the Championship.

Ernie Baywood
242 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:23:26
Christy, it's true that Koeman shuffled Ross Barkley in and out of the team and in all sorts of positions. At the same time, there was a lot of frustration with him for the amount he lost the ball. To his credit, he continued to try to be creative even when he was being slated for it.

We should have built our team around that lad. Instead, we (Everton) tried to make him fit a mould.

I always thought he was more in the Zidane genre than a Gerrard. But he was pushed more towards the latter.

It's hard to believe just what we had on our hands. Full international, lauded as a generational talent, and he was a blue. Could you imagine having someone like that now?

And we misused him to the point he wanted out. In his early 20s (remembering he missed a lot of development due to his broken leg) he needed to be nurtured. He's absolutely responsible for where his career has gone – he should have left us sooner.

And maybe that's why we don't get the best young kids at our academy anymore. Would you send yours there?

Barry Hesketh
243 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:25:46
I suppose that the reaction by many Evertonians to the 'wise words' of Roy Keane last night shows how far the club has fallen.

A statement by a pundit virtually slagging off the players of Everton, in times gone by, would have seen the switchboards go white hot at the local media outlets as rabid Evertonians showed their anger at the pundit and his views. Instead, I have read many Blues nodding in agreement with the Irishman's views.

I don't quite agree with Keane's sentiments as Everton have had many worse squads, ability-wise, in the past, but I don't think we've ever had a collection of players who cannot raise themselves for the bread-and-butter games, week-in & week-out, as this current one.

The last two matches in Manchester show that the team can give a good account of themselves on occasion; however, any team of players, at any level, can organise themselves to sit deep and soak up pressure – in many cases, it's the easiest option.

I am watching Portsmouth at Spurs at the minute and they are trying to play football, rather than all hands to the pump defending and hoping to get a goal on the break.

Last night was a bit more joined up than the game at Man City but other than the VAR disallowed goal, how many chances did Everton really create?

That's the top and bottom of this current side, there is a dearth of creative players and that's why the team struggles to win football matches. We're quickly reaching the point where draws – even at the venues of the best sides – won't be enough to get us out of the mire.

On the subject of Tom Davies, I was aghast at the vitriol he received in the game with Brighton. He had a decent match, he was trying to probe and supply the front players, but a misplaced pass or slightly weak tackle was enough to get his many detractors out of their seats and shouting abuse... not helpful to any player, particularly to one in a team that is struggling for form.

For what it's worth, I don't believe that Everton will get out of the Bottom 3, whoever manages the club in the next 20 games, if you don't score, you don't win, and this team doesn't create enough chances to tilt the games in their own favour.

On a Saturday like today, when I was a teenager, the excitement for 3rd Round day was palpable and one of the highlights of the season, where even a poor team could reinvigorate the supporters and players alike, with progress in the FA Cup.

Instead, we're already out of the competition and, with a shrug of the shoulders, we return to the battle for survival without a collective batting of eyelids.

A bad league season and yet another early exit from a cup competition, it's what we've become used to and accepting of, despite the huge financial investment of the last 7 years.

Raymond Fox
244 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:28:22
All I would say about last night was they tried their best but again we were not good enough. That was no suprise to anyone, I would imagine.

I disagree that it was a good idea to play our best team, but each to their own. There's only one goal now and that's surviving.

We have all known for weeks now that it's the lack of goals that's killing us; if we don't solve that problem, we are doomed.

We desperately need a win or two to get some life into the club. That would make a hell of a difference at the bottom of the League because it's tight and there's nothing much in it for 6-8 teams.

Matt Henderson
245 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:37:04
On the subject of Tom Davies and Ross Barkley, my view is football has changed quite rapidly in the last 6 years. If you lack pace and strength, as Tom does, then you need to be supremely skilled and he is not that either.

He should not be abused but I don't think he's ever going to be much good and that's no-one's fault. At least he always tries.

Barkley's problems were above the shoulders. If we could put Tom's head (football brain and attitude etc.) on Barkley's shoulders there might be a player but they both lack something stopping them from making it to the top – regardless of the managers they've had.

David Peate
246 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:44:24
Barry, we have been through far worse scenarios.

The teams of the 1940s were dreadful. Ted Sagar was the only good player remaining from pre-war years after the sales of Lawton and Mercer and the dumping of TG Jones. This was clearly bad management at Board level.

Then, there was that awful season 1950-51 when Cliff Briton was unable to keep the club in the First Division because of lack of funds and, again, mismanagement. It is al a case of déjà vu.

Robert Tressell
247 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:46:02
Martinez was the only one who understood what to do with Barkley: let him play.

He was never going to be mature or intelligent enough to operate in some sort of disciplined system etc. But let him play and he can hurt the opposition. So Martinez let him do just that – even accepting that he can be hit and miss.

It means you need other players to accommodate him – working hard, filling gaps he vacates and winning the ball back too, but so be it.

It wouldn't work at City where everyone is supremely talented and tactically intelligent. But it helped to elevate us at the point he came through.

Ray Smith
248 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:49:44
Barry @243,

Wise words indeed from Roy Keane. However, I have just seen a compilation of clips from Gianluca Vialli (RIP), one of which should be imprinted on players' minds.

He said, there are two things in football. You win or, you don't lose, you learn. The more I think of it, the more it makes sense. What vision that man had. Taken far too soon.

If Frank could get them believing along those lines, things could and would change for the better.

Barry Robson
249 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:52:39
Martinez to be next manager of Portugal. Happy about that personally!
Iain Johnston
250 Posted 07/01/2023 at 13:52:40
Those supporting 4-5-1. Isn't that what we've been playing anyway?

We have an isolated striker up front who isn't given support.

Jerome Shields
251 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:01:08
Barry #243,

There was effort put in, but not near enough for the FA Cup 3rd Round as I remember. I kept thinking this throughout the game. You are the first poster to highlight this.

The FA Cup 3rd Round used to be like a derby match between Everton and Man Utd. The two teams looked like they were going through the motions, Everton particularly so when they went behind in the second half.

That is why I said that they will be glad to be out of the FA Cup, because the reaction was just a shrug of the shoulder, rather than defeat. Anyway most years they are out of the all cups after Xmas.

But could anyone really say they concentrated on the League? It is often again just going through the motions. I don't believe any player now joins Everton to win any cup, just to keep the gravy train of footballer wages going.

The problem is that the whole Club is going through the motions of keeping the Premier League money coming in, they don't even bother to communicate with the supporters, as Ian Wright said.

Mark Taylor
252 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:05:48
Last night showed the players are still playing for the manager. When they don't, it will be time for Frank to go.

Replacing him strikes me as putting the cart before the horse. Would you trust our current leadership to make wise choices, given their record over 7 years? Basic 'manager bounce' is the only argument in favour. I'm not persuaded that will happen if all else stays the same.

We are not good enough to play from the back through midfield. None of the latter can pass competently. We are better playing direct. That requires pace up front. Obviously Maupay and McNeil cannot play this way, they are among the slowest players in the Premier League.

Gray offers something, pace and the willingness to beat a defender. So would the old Calvert-Lewin but I fear he looks broken now. If we can't get a fast striker in (not Ings), then youngsters it will have to be.

Regarding player abuse, that is regrettable but understandable, given emotions run high. The real problem is that, in most cases, they really just aren't good enough.
Davies has been here a long, long time and if he was any good, we'd have seen it by now. It's not his fault he's relatively mediocre. Gordon is different; he still has time to prove himself but maybe do that before asking for £100k a week.

Barkley? An amazing talent but, at high level sport, that won't get the job done. The fact he's failed everywhere he's gone shows the problem was not to do with Everton fans shouting at him. Same goes for Rodwell – albeit the latter never had Ross's raw talent.

Jeff Armstrong
253 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:31:01
And Saints win away to a decent strength Palace.
Bill Gall
254 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:49:26
We all know what we need – changing the manager will not solve the problem of lack of creativity and goal scoring, and that is the major requirement of any Premier League team just to finish mid-table.

The DoF and his staff are aware of what we need and we keep reading of players we are after. Problem is we can't afford the standard we need, and players at the standard we can afford are asking for prices we can't afford. (I hope that makes sense!)

We are going to have to rely on loan deals that are not going to happen until the end of the window as other clubs want money for their players and are willing to wait until the end of the transfer window; we need action now.

We have young players who can score goals but are not given a chance of replacing players who can't score, for every Rooney that becomes a mega-star, there are 5/6 young players who become successful Premier League players given a chance; using the same failures with a reputation will not bring any rewards.

Time is not on our side on the playing side, but replacing certain Board members that deserve it is for our future and that is up to the owner who put them there.

We need results today using players we can rely on. We have skillful players, we have grafters, we have players who never miss a goal in practice but can only frighten the crowd behind the goal, so maybe a young player's enthusiasm will be the answer.

You can't change anything just hoping things will turn around, you have to have courage to make it, and to me Lampard would get more respect if he stopped relying on players who were letting him down.

Enough ranting... back to work.

Ray Roche
255 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:54:06
Jeff @253,

It's a double-edged sword. It either gives them confidence or it gives them a fixture pile-up resulting in too many games in a short period. Let's hope it's the latter.

Christopher Timmins
256 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:21:33
Jim #238,

We don't have the quality of players to play:

3-4-3 or
4-5-1 either.

I just think 5-3-2 is the least-worst option – just like Dyche is the least-worst option of the currently available ones.

Dave Williams
257 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:25:01

I wasn't taking a “cheap shot” at supporters. I was stating a fact that some go to the game and spend most of it hurling abuse at the players which doesn't help them in the slightest. This is a minority albeit those with the loudest mouths. If they encouraged the players instead, there might be more positive reaction.

One of the worst in recent times was the Palace game. The guy next to me spent half an hour hurling vile abuse at the players and got up and left when their second goal went in. He missed the great comeback which gave him his just deserts!

Danny O’Neill
258 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:37:56
That certaintly wasn't aimed at you, Dave or anyone in particular.

We all know that person, Dave.

Jim Wilson
259 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:41:49

If we don't have quality, 4-5-1 is the best option. Dyche plays 4-4-2 or 4-5-1.

3-5-2 does not help the midfield unless your wingbacks are brilliant. A team with 3 central defenders and no full-backs is a recipe for trouble.

Rich Evans
260 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:52:57
Matt #245, spot on there.

Barkley drove me mad all of the time, always seemed to play the wrong ball after doing the difficult stuff so well.

Kim Vivian
261 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:56:14
I know this isn't an EFC vs So'ton thread but... to buy some time for Lampard...

Saints win away to Palace – a hard game I imagine. They have a Carabao Cup Quarterfinal against City on Wednesday and then travel to Goodison on Saturday.

Meanwhile, we have had 7 clear days to get ready – which may mean nothing – but a win surely has to be on the cards next week if we get stuck into them.

Colin Malone
262 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:11:25
Christopher #237.

If we go for Gordon and McNeil in a 5-3-2, we will get battered, hammered, destroyed. These two are the problems in the side.

I will say it again. Imagine if we had Arjen Robbin, Anders Limpar, Kanchelskis type player. Frank could go to his favoured formation.

Imagine Gordon and McNeil in a three. OMG. The two can't even go past a player.

Derek Knox
263 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:18:15
Dave W @ 257,

While I totally agree with you and don't advocate vile abuse towards anyone, except Kenwright, being The Devil's Advocate to a degree, players who claim they have played poorly because Johnny Gobshite called him names (boo-hoo) smacks to me as a convenient excuse.

These players are living most supporters' dream, playing for the club they love, the fans that is (not all, I know) and getting more than a handsome fee for doing so.

It surely is not too much to expect to see them play their heart out for however long they are on the pitch for?

Also, if they were true professionals, any abuse should be answered by proving those detractors wrong, by playing well and escaping anything but praise.

Kevin Molloy
264 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:23:48
Our chap is a total busted flush. He should have been booted months ago. We are wasting precious hours and points holding onto him.

If or when we go down, this period will be viewed as the opportunity that was lost by a clueless board. Then it will be 'Why did they hang onto him for so long? Villa got rid of their dead horse months ago'.

So frustrating.

Stephen Davies
265 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:32:00
Vincent Kompany is doing a terrific job at Burnley. Presently 4-2 up at Bournemouth, who battered us twice.

He will go onto better things.

Joe McMahon
266 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:32:13
Nowhere else to put this, but at last Unsworth is dragging Oldham away from the relegation zone. I sometimes go to Oldham with work and the town needs a lift!

Stephen, Burnley's squad is probably better than ours also, loaded with pace... What a state we are with hundreds of millions spent.

Sean Roe
267 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:32:45
Danny @ 258

Have you been on the Whisky, mate?

Matt Henderson
268 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:44:30
Derek @ 263…

I am torn on the abuse impact on performance. On one side, I agree with what you say and any professional sportsman needs to deal with the crowds and if you can't do that then mentally you aren't ever going to make it.

On the other hand, everyone says how the fan support was the reason why we stayed up last season so, if that is true, then surely the opposite must be true when players are abused and it negatively impacts performance?

Danny O’Neill
269 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:59:11
In what respect, Sean?

I don't and never have touched the hard stuff by the way.

Not really sure I understand the context of your point or what it's aimed at.

Darren Hind
270 Posted 07/01/2023 at 17:54:55
Oh dear, Derek,

You get the benefit of the doubt and you come back again trying to excuse the shite aimed at young players.

I, and I doubt anybody else, has heard a player say they played poorly because somebody shouted at them. So it's not really the convenient excuse you claim it to be. You on the other hand are trying to justify it by saying "They live the dream".

Do you have any idea how difficult it is for a youngster to "prove their detractors wrong by playing well when they get abuse for games they don't even play in?

I remembered Davies getting singled out for "the treatment" before one game. I couldn't believe it because we were playing Liverpool of all people. All those horrible reds and we had fans slagging our own players.

Just looked back at who was doing it and any regret I may have felt about my first post instantly evaporated.


Footballers are fair game for criticism when they play well, but it has to be balanced. We have two vastly experienced centre-halves shipping goals like there is no tomorrow... but they are escaping criticism, They`re even getting praised.

In the absence of Davies and Gordon, Onana and McNeil will take all the flack.

The senior people in this team should be protecting and guiding the younger ones. Not hiding behind them.

Sean Roe
271 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:06:43
The typo's Danny, unlike you, you're grammar is usually spot on, just joshing though!
Gary Johnson
272 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:25:37
Just seen some interesting analysis on another forum… basically saying the board believe fans' anger is primarily aimed at them, and that sacking Frank Lampard would not only not placate the anger, but actually enhance it. Therefore, they will sit on Lampard for at least another few games to see if the anger turns on him directly.

If this is true (and let's face it, it stinks of that cowardly hyena-weasel Kenwright) then it shows just how much shit we are in. We are run by absolute jellyfish whose only concern is keeping hold of the reins and whatever PR keeps them on them. It was easy with Rafa (as soon as “Fat Spanish Waiter” rang at Goodison), Easy with Allardyce (as soon as “Sammy Lee's Fat” rang out), Silva at Norwich when we sang “Sacked in the morning” too.

Think about it!! Everything we've seen and heard about Bill and we don't think there's PsyOps??? Honestly? It's almost like thinking the US Government aren't trying to control social media.

They have a gun. They want to pull the trigger. Have to pull the trigger… but, what if it's the Bullet Train gun, and aiming back at them?

It explains a lot. In fact, it's the only thing that makes sense to me about why he's still here.

So fuck it. I hate Frank. I don't use the phase lightly. He's breaking our kids and identity and taking us down. However, if the board want me to sing against him, they can kiss my arse.

I am not their pawn. I've been one of the most vocal critics of Lampard since Bournemouth, but it stops now. My anger is now 100% aimed at them, and them only.

Where are the signings we need?!!?? We need a right-back, a Lampard/Gerrard type central attacing midfielder, a striker and a right wingback. Where are they? End of January is no good, it's too far back.

Enough is enough. I'll be there at Southampton, and “Sack the Board” is the only thing on my mind if 2 of those 4 aren't in. Time to wake up… I think I just have.

Danny O’Neill
273 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:28:27
That's fine, Sean. It was me on my phone travelling back from the match this morning and the eyes aren't what they used to be.

I'll be on the Vino tonight so you can call me out for later posts!!

When Skies Are Grey. Speke From The Harbour.

Looking to Saturday.

Pete Clarke
274 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:31:29
Only somebody of Sam Allardyce's ilk can stop us going down with this squad and available funds. Not calling for this, of course, but putting out fires was his game and right now we are burning.

Another loss, albeit hard-fought and in the cup, offers little comfort as it takes its toll on the players' confidence. We were never realistically going to get a result at Old Trafford.

It's not hard to look at this squad of bang-average players, a manager who is too inexperienced or not good enough to get much out of those players, look at the points generally required to stay up and then come to the conclusion that time has finally caught up with the club's total ineptitude and we are going to be relegated.

If there is a positive that can come out of this oncoming disaster, then that would be the resignation of all board members due to fan pressure. How can they have allowed this to happen and still be in employment? They have overseen the spend of hundreds of millions of pounds which has been wasted on crap players.

To think that Joe Royle could not get enough money just to buy a decent Tor Andre Flo!

Moshiri is ultimately responsible for this chaos because he wanted little to do with actually running the club and was conned by Bill. Let's hope he sells up to somebody who does want to run the club and has both ambition and a vision for the club's future.

Kieran Kinsella
275 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:36:39

You enjoy boxing where two usually working-class men or women beat the crap out of each other, risking injury, brain damage or death, as it's the only chance they have to make a decent living while facing vociferous abuse from a blood-baying crowd who attempt to profit from it by having a little wager.

Get off your high horse.

Martin Mason
276 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:47:14

They have a choice nowadays and it isn't their only chance.

Boxing is a wonderful thing for many young lads.

Kevin Molloy
277 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:49:51

This is exactly the scenario I thought we would want to avoid.

In concentrating on the board, the fans have helped to stymie the necessary action that needs to be taken.

Indulging ourselves over what a rotter Kenwright was a decade ago is the one thing which may now prevent us from moving on from him.

We are set to be sold but that won't go through if we are relegated. And the board don't want to boot Lampard whilst they are the ones being blamed for this diabolical form.

Martin Mason
278 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:50:43
If you have a crowd that bays for blood if you make a mistake passing forward and losing it, what do you do?

Boo boys are a curse on football.

Ian Bennett
279 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:52:29
Why won't we be sold if we are relegated? They might not get top dollar, but they might not have a choice.
Tony Hill
280 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:55:25
We are a very highly strung and increasingly frantic team and fan base. One sees why.

Counter-intuitively, we need to slow down and step aside from our paralysing anxieties. I commend to us all the lovely Taoist principle of Wu Wei. It works throughout life, very much including sport. Unclench.

Kevin Molloy
281 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:02:33
Ian, should we be relegated, we will disappear under a mountain of debt. We are already chancing it with our wage bill and bad signings in the Premier League; take those figures to the Championship and disaster awaits.
Matt Henderson
282 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:03:37
Hey Darren,

I'm not arguing whether criticism is fair game or valid but I'm asking the question on whether abusing the players is counter-productive to what we all want which is maximising performance and winning?

And if, as is said by many often on here, the fans' support last season improved performance and kept us safe, then surely the opposite is true and abusing the players impacts performance negatively?

The criticism may be valid and understandable but ultimately, by doing it, are we just hurting the team and ourselves when a more positive approach has been proven last season (according to most on this site) to improve things?

Darren Hind
283 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:07:42

You are talking to a man who introduces Davies to virtually every matchday thread. Including this one. He has even penned an ill-informed article claiming he has gotten four managers sacked. He came on the live forum the other night and posted just once... Guess who about?

A lot of Evertonians don't rate Tom Davies and say so. That's fair... But not many will follow him on Twitter hanging on to every non-footy-related word and post it on a matchday thread after we have just been knocked out of the cup.

Criticism of a performance is one thing......



Mark Murphy
284 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:21:20

I don't know where you live but the manager, the board nor the attraction of playing for Chelsea were not factors in why Ross Barkley left Liverpool.

Matt Henderson
285 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:24:10
Kevin @281.

That is a real worry for me. The future of the club will be very uncertain if we are relegated. Revenue all of a sudden drops significantly but we will still be left with huge costs as we have players on massive wages we won't be able to shift.

We would then continue to make large annual losses and face more and more recruitment restrictions (or point deductions) due to continued FFP issues on an ongoing basis caused by historic mismanagement of finances and recruitment we can't escape from.

If we go down, the shrewdness of the decision-makers at the top of the club will determine how bad the impact is and if we will ever come back up or sink further.

Given the long-term pattern of incompetence from the club's executives, unless they are changed, we will not be recovering in a hurry and could disappear altogether.

Every day they are left in charge of the club they are causing more and more damage.

Gary Johnson
286 Posted 07/01/2023 at 19:44:43

It's a real conundrum. Lampard is the single biggest immediate threat, but the majority of match goers aren't yet turning on him. Even though the wider fanbase are, it's still not overwhelming. The board is seen as Enemy No 1 in both. No question. Hard to argue.

If they believe sacking Lampard will deflect that anger, they will, but as much as he's an imbecilic football owner, Kenwright is certainly a learned PR snake. He knows the 2-3 week interview window will infuriate more. He knows the risks a non NDR interviewee exposing the non budget will infuriate. He sees the risk of anger as greater in twisting than it is in sticking.

I believe he's been holding out hoping Moyes gets sacked so he can act in one swoop…. but West Ham are turning a corner, and it ain't coming off. Anything else is interviews, risks and delays. Only if and when we hit rock bottom (coming in the next week or two) will he have no choice but to take the risk.

By then, it'll be too late. Relegation and debt is certainly a mind-boggling risk to our very existence. As QPR, Derby and others have seen, you get 18 months to meet rules or they will cripple you with points.

My only hope there is that they can't put the stadium all on the club and Moshiri has his pants pulled personally. Can't see what collateral the club has for such debt.

Anyway, I am no financial wizard but if it's being saddled with debts and 15 years being a Forrest or a Leeds, or go bankrupt and start again from the bottom, like Rangers did, I'd take the latter. What a hit in the stomach that'd be though if it didn't include the new Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock.

Bill Watson
287 Posted 08/01/2023 at 00:51:56
I was at the game on Friday night so have just watched MotD to have a look at our disallowed goal. Not only didn't they show it, it wasn't even mentioned!!
Barry Hesketh
288 Posted 08/01/2023 at 01:08:34
Bill @287

It was offside, but only a hair's breadth offside, such is our luck in those situations. I stil can't wrap my head around certain grounds having the VAR whilst others don't, surely it should be a pre-requisite of entry into the competiton to have the VAR?

For example Sheffield Wednesday could go all the way to the Semis by virtue of offside goals as long as they are drawn at home and our neighbours could have the VAR in every match and whatever incident is judged by the VAR it will go in their favour?

Bill Gall
289 Posted 08/01/2023 at 01:27:41
Barry @288,

Does that not mean discrimination? I think that's what happens to teams that go to Sky favorites seeing the Wolves goal being given offside.

Nigel Munford
290 Posted 08/01/2023 at 01:32:21
All of the results from FA Cup games played with the VAR should deemed null and void and be replayed without the VAR, hopefully providing a more level playing field (no pun intended).

I belive this season's FA Cup has declined into a feckin farce!!!!

Kieran Kinsella
291 Posted 08/01/2023 at 05:12:38

2,000. The number of boxers who've died in the ring. And you're worried that Derek called a crap footballer Bette?

You've got blood on your hands mate with your gambling addiction. How many ring deaths is too many for you, St Darren?

Darren Hind
292 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:17:11
Wow! I've been betting on boxing bouts??? Why wasn't I told about this? Seems I have a gambling addiction too!

I must seek help, but not until I check my betting slips. I'd hate to have all that blood on my hands and not even be collecting my winnings…

Barry Jones
293 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:56:58
It's a bit sad when we start embracing a 3-1 defeat as an improvement. The questions is, does the board sack Lampard now at the beginning of the transfer window or not?

We all remember the Benitez fiasco when he was fired just before the last day of the transfer window. Is the board deliberately using this strategy, so that any incoming manager is limited in his spending?

I also can't believe the support for Dyche. His team played ugly football and were eventually relegated. Not that I would dismiss ugly football at the moment if we secured 3 points each game.

But, shouldn't we have the mentality of going out there to find winning managers, like Villa did with Emery? I still believe strongly that Pochettino is the man. It should not be forgotten what he achieved with not the best squad in the league.

He was one of the three managers at the time who played a high pressing game, along with Guardiola and Klopp, both of who admired him for his work. I'm not sure how financial restrictions come into play with coaches, but we should pay whatever is necessary to secure him, if he is possibly interested.

Brian Murray
294 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:11:57
Was it three own-goals last season by that donkey Keane in the same position as Coady's own-goal?

A top centre-half gets his position to clear it. I'm not saying he should just've left it to someone else behind him.

I suppose he's the level of player we get at the moment but I was hoping for better from him there.

Paul Tran
295 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:14:17
Don't mention betting slips, Darren. The environmentalists will be after you as well with all that wasted paper!
Tony Hill
296 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:20:06
Brian @294,

Not much of the donkey about him in that crucial first goal against Palace.

Paul Cherrington
297 Posted 09/01/2023 at 08:30:31
Another disappointing result overall but at least there was an improved performance from the Brighton game to reflect on.

To be fair, there were some positives to take from it. The players showed a lot of fight, spirit and effort. It seems that they are playing for the manager still and he has not lost them yet. We were also a bit unlucky - could have been a different result if the offside goal had stood and Gray's shot that hit the post in the first half had gone in.

But then there is the other side we have to consider which is less positive. The thing that stood out massively for me again is how bad the team is, how bad the squad is and how poor the majority of our players look overall. People might not like Roy Keane's comments about us pre-game but he's right - some of the people we keep playing are barely Premier League standard.

Very few of them can do the basics like pass 5 yards to another blue shirt or protect the ball. Their close control, decision making and final ball is diabolical. I have never seen a team give the ball away so much, usually when under no pressure to do so. Or constantly take the wrong option when attacking. Or move the ball so slowly, even when there is someone in space to pass to quick.

To be fair to Lampard, much of this is not his fault as most of the squad were already here when he arrived. However, there are things he could do to help which he is failing to do so.

Firstly, there is team selection. I don't hold with the feeling he has no options and has to keep playing the same rubbish like Doucoure, Maupay or McNeil. He does have options if he wanted to use them.

Why not try Vinagre at left back for a few games over the limited Mykolenko? Why not try Simms or Cannon up front instead of Maupay (either in place of DCL or alongside him when fit)? Why not give Mills a run in the team to freshen things up? Why does he not give Price a run of games to prove himself in midfield, rather than turning to people like Davies who have shown they are not up to it?

Other teams have no issue giving their best youngsters a go when they seem ready, we should be doing the same. For a manager who came in with a reputation for playing the youngsters, Lampard's insistence on ignoring them and playing the usual suspects who let us down most weeks is baffling.

The other area the manager can improve on is tactics. The world and his wife can see we do not have the players to pass out from the back or play through midfield. Yet he still sends them out with the gameplan to do so. It's crazy.

With the current squad, he has to be pragmatic and go direct. The only options right now are long balls over the top for Gray to chase, long balls to a big lad up front for him to knock down and getting crosses into the box to attack. When the defence have it our attackers need to be on their bikes and they just need to get rid of it - no more faffing about inviting pressure around our own box.

We still look tired out in most games around the 70 minute mark and that is baffling too. Closing down was also poor at the wkd and in most games still. They go towards an opposition player but then stop around 3 yards aways and just give them time to play a pass. These are all things Lampard could be fixing to make us better.

At the end of the day, it was another morale sapping defeat which showed the issues fans have been pointing out all season. Something has to change soon as we don't know how to win a game at the minute.

Danny O’Neill
298 Posted 09/01/2023 at 08:48:57
Barry @293, okay using language such as improvement might not resonate with some.

It was an improved performance. It goes down a a 3 - 1 but a soft last minute penalty that was debatable in my view. And that ridiculous offside rule the chalked off a goal on the end of a really good move.

They had a bit more quality and Rashford had a good night. He doesn't always. But it was a close match regardless of scoreline and the team worked hard.

Fine margins, but the supporters, and let's face it, we can the most ferocious in letting the have it, showed their appreciation.

If we take that performance and attitude into Goodison on Saturday and we will win.

David Midgley
299 Posted 09/01/2023 at 10:52:17
This has been one of the most interesting articles I've read for a long time.
Interesting that for the most part posters have stuck to the task and addressed the
problems Everton are facing.
We've been a very badly run club for years. That is without dispute and many are calling for the board to be cleared out. If they all went tomorrow what would that achieve right now for the situation we are in ? How will that effect our next game ?
I don't think Frank is the man for the job, not at the start and not now.
I just don't think he has the ability.
I'm not a tactician but I can see when something isn't working. People in the ground can see it, those watching via the net can see it and even Long John Silver who only had one eye can see it. Frank himself must be able to see what's unfolding before
him but unfortunately he doesn't know what to do to correct it.
Substitutes coming on for 10 minutes, what's the point of having 5 subs if they're not used, not giving young players a chance, how will you find out if they can step up ?
Vinegar for Myko who isn't playing well ?
Unfortunately he doesn't have the ability to read and change a game.

Wolves, Villa and S'ton have changed managers. They haven't brought in lots of players but they seem to be playing better with a system and a plan, how is that ?
It's like half a dozen cooks, same ingredients but some serve up rubbish.
I thought at the start of the season we would be OK , however, the reality now is that we can and will go down.
Who to get ? Bielsa ? Poch ? I like the idea of Poch. . Pay him the money whatever it takes. If he keeps us up that would be wonderful, however, he would have seen during this seasons tenure what was needed to get us back.
I think Frank must go. Now.
He reminds me of our former prime minister Liz Truss who had more ambition than ability .
This patient could become terminal unless we get a new doctor immediately.

Oh for some words from George to give us a lift and see the Blue skies.

Andrew Grey
300 Posted 09/01/2023 at 11:29:33
Should Lampard go, Potter could be available soon. There are worse options out there, much worse.

Add Your Comments

In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.

» Log in now

Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.

How to get rid of these ads and support TW

© ToffeeWeb