Rafael Benitez says it was impossible to manage Everton his way due to Liverpool ties

20/09/2022 98comments  |  Jump to last

Rafael Benitez says it was impossible to manage Everton the way he wanted to due to his history with rivals Liverpool.

The Spaniard said he does not regret taking over at Goodison Park but admits he struggled to make certain decisions because of his ties to Everton's Merseyside rivals.

“At the time Everton came in with the offer, I knew I would give my best and do everything to try to improve things,” he said. “I knew it could be difficult because I was at Liverpool, so maybe I couldn't make some decisions. It was very clear for us at the beginning.

“I had a meeting with a head of one of the departments and I asked him 'Do you think everything is fine?' He said 'Yeah, everything is perfect.' I thought '£600M had been spent, it cannot be perfect when the owners aren't happy and the fans are not happy.'

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“So I realised we had to change things inside, but I couldn't do it straight away because I was a former Red and it could be seen as 'Oh, he's come in to change our club'.

“In another club, I would have made those decisions. I did it in the past, because you know very clearly that is the way to improve, but there at Everton I couldn't do it.

Benitez believes Gordon, who has scored two goals in seven Premier League games this season, is now starting to fulfil his potential but admits he initially doubted the 21-year-old.

“We played a friendly in Miami in pre-season and after 50 minutes, he couldn't run,” Benitez said.

“We knew he was a player with quality on the ball, could finish, pass and had pace. But he couldn't run. We had a conversation with him after the game. It was hot, but he's a young player.

“I was talking with the coaches in the academy and my assistant and they said they weren't sure. They knew he had the talent but maybe it was his mentality.

“We spent time with him, but the main thing was to change his mentality and he was very keen to do it. He worked really hard, he improved his stamina and he got better and better because he had the potential.

“He has to improve some parts of his game, he knows that. But I'm really pleased to see him progressing because he's a nice lad.”

» Read the full article at Sky Sports News


Reader Comments (98)

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Peter Mills
1 Posted 20/09/2022 at 13:52:02
Just as I was beginning to have occasional moments when I forgot he was ever our manager.
Gerry Quinn
2 Posted 20/09/2022 at 13:55:35
How about a load of crap from Allardyce too?
Steve Brown
3 Posted 20/09/2022 at 14:00:15
The big ‘I am’.

File under bollocks.

Nick Page
4 Posted 20/09/2022 at 15:36:35
Did Benitez forget to sign the NDA that every single CEO, manager, DoF has had slung around their necks on departure?

The only interesting thing he really had to say was about the department head, and everything being fine. That in itself is a great insight into Kenwright's Everton, the appalling mis-management and the incredibly low standards that now permeate our football club.

If you think he's talking bollocks then you clearly haven't been listening for the past 15+ years. What I've seen from Lampard gives me some hope but, until we're rid of the amateurs in the boardroom, nothing will really change.

Brian Murray
5 Posted 20/09/2022 at 15:47:10
Benitez just mirrors the other arrogant prick Allardyce in blaming everything and everyone except him.

Also, like him, he has a clique in the media that try to keep him relevant and push him for another job.

His association to the red shite has nothing to do with his 1 win in 14. Another disastrous appointment that any club (Leicester etc) should steer well clear of.

John Raftery
6 Posted 20/09/2022 at 15:52:47
In fairness to Benitez, any manager would have struggled with the squad we had 12 months ago. We only need to look at the names on the team sheet last autumn compared to what we have now to know a major rebuilding job was required.

Moreover, there was a lack of visible support within the club, from the people on the board down to those among the staff who had been through too many morale-sapping managerial and coaching changes.

Throw in the antipathy of the fans and it quickly became clear he faced a well-nigh impossible task.

My hard hat is on.

Steve Daniells
7 Posted 20/09/2022 at 15:56:29
"I knew it could be difficult because I was at Liverpool" — or maybe it's because he rubs everyone the wrong way with his arrogance and stubbornness.

I appreciate that he brought Begovic and Gray to the club, and that he gave Gordon a chance, but there were so many evenings during his stint where I was texting my brother saying, "I'm done! Not watching these anymore."

There's a lot wrong with our club that seems may be slowly changing under Thelwell and Lampard, but Benitez was never the answer. I'm glad he's gone and wish he'd stop talking about us.

Jay Harris
8 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:37:45
Right idea, wrong man.

It was impossible for Benitez because his way of implementing change was to be an autocrat whereas Frank is the polar opposite. He points out the reasons for changes to be made and works with other people.

Benitez was also unlucky with injuries and suspension to Calvert-Lewin, Doucoure and Richarlison.

As John Raftery said, anyone would have struggled with that squad — as Frank did by just escaping relegation.

Frank has now brought massive change to the club in a very positive way and I'm hoping for a much better season, even though others around us have also strengthened.

Alan J Thompson
9 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:43:09
Seems he wanted to take responsibility for and change everything but not the poor performances of his main responsibility and now seems to want to claim he knew nothing of Everton's financial plight until after he joined.

Perhaps he should have wondered about Mr Ancelotti's resignation.

Mike Gaynes
10 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:46:28
On the subject of managers, Mazel Tov to our man Rhino. Wishing him the best at Oldham.

He could become an instant legend if somehow he can resurrect them from the National League. I remember them as a Premier League club... so long ago now.

Chris Williams
11 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:51:04
Maybe he shouldn’t have worn Liverpool ties!
Kevin Molloy
12 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:56:38
It might have worked out even with the lukewarm support, but he was hamstrung by Calvert-Lewin being out for the season, and not being given any money in the transfer market.

I still find his stewardship impressive. Forcing out massive earners like Digne and James, to bring in two outstanding full-backs, and Gray, Begovic and Townsend on a virtual zero spend.

He wasn't given credit for anything, just derision heaped on him from almost the first day. Oh well, ancient history now.

Mike Gaynes
13 Posted 20/09/2022 at 16:56:55
John #6, no hard hat necessary, good points all, but I don't think anybody here feels the least bit sorry for the bastard.

I will say this for him -- he got it right on Gray and Townsend, and if he hadn't forced out Digne, we wouldn't have our current sensational young full-backs. And if he hadn't hung on as long as he did, we wouldn't have bagged Frank as manager.

As my Buddhist beloved always says, things happen for a reason. Benitez may have been the botulism of managers, but we did need the purge.

Dale Self
14 Posted 20/09/2022 at 17:05:19
I'll extend an umbrella to John 6 although, with my history of backing Rafa, it may not be wanted. He was making incremental changes that helped but the injuries and a completely dysfunctional club background brought out the worst of his survivalist manager moves.

Go back and look at the table before the injuries piled up. I'm not saying he was the guy, I was against him at the appointment time. However, his place in Everton history will be a residual sink for all that was fucked about this club at the time and none (okay, very little until he got bitter) was his doing.

If you're going to get weird about Rafa, save some of that for the upstairs guys (and gals).

Dave Abrahams
15 Posted 20/09/2022 at 17:12:44
Nice to see that Rafa has a few fans on here, I couldn’t agree more or better the post by John @ (6).
Mike Gaynes
16 Posted 20/09/2022 at 17:48:55
Kieran #14, if he can even get that club up towards the playoff spots, he'll be loved there. Seems like a low bar for success.

Besides, Oldham does have Hope.

(Hallam)

Gerry Quinn
17 Posted 20/09/2022 at 18:00:01
Fair comment, John.

However, once he had made that comment about us being a small club, there is no way on this earth that he should have even been considered...

Barry Rathbone
18 Posted 20/09/2022 at 18:34:49
The totem of Moshiri's foolishness was the Benitez appointment.

Benitez had to hit the ground running and win everything in sight to placate a certain section of the fanbase. To not grasp that as owner of EFC confirms other indicators that in footballing terms, he is a bumbling idiot.

Hopefully he sells up soon.

Trevor Powell
19 Posted 20/09/2022 at 18:52:23
Good to see that the Benitezaurus blames everyone else for his decisions. If he really understood EFC, he would have gone back to China for quick dosh!

At the time of his appointment and all the scoffing from RS that he would be their inside agent to destroy our threat for years to come!

I wish the Echo had surveyed the local matchgoing RS, if they would have Benitezaurus back if Klopp were to leave for the German National job? Bet the answer would have been a resounding negative!

Peter Mills
20 Posted 20/09/2022 at 18:58:38
Carragher helped set up the appointment of Benitez via the tamest of interviews with him on Sky, feeding him the question “Would you ever consider the Everton job?”. Benitez played all coy, but made it known he would do us such an honour.

I suspect Benitez could not believe his luck when he was given an interview, somehow impressed them with his spiel of having a database of 3,000 players (so has my 8-year-old grandson), to be offered a flight back from China to Heswall and a £20M contract. Which would be paid even if he failed. Which, of course, he did.

People whose opinions I respect on here have expressed contrary views to mine, but I reckon Señor and Señora Benitez must pinch themselves many times a day.

Danny O’Neill
21 Posted 20/09/2022 at 19:05:57
I was disappointed and uncomfortable with the appointment; I didn't want it happen, but was willing to give it a go once it happened. I wasn't dusting off my pitchfork but uncomfortable.

Agree with both John Raftery on the situation he was in and also with Barry on the point he had to win practically every match.

As predicted by many, it always had the potential to go south early. And it did. All I wanted was what we all wanted. Everton to win and progress.

I knew he had a reputation and I tried to convince myself that maybe he was trying to restructure the club. But the way he went about it was disruptive. As someone said at the time, the Finch Farm canteen staff must have been concerned about their position at one point…

Brian Harrison
22 Posted 20/09/2022 at 19:21:20
I think the Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder sums up Benitez perfectly when he said "without doubt the worst manager I have ever had and an even worse person".
Lee Courtliff
23 Posted 20/09/2022 at 19:23:46
I remember saying that Rafa could be our Lampard, as in, setting things up for the next man to come in and take it a step further. Just like Tuchel did.

Little did I know that Rafa was just setting us up for Frank himself!!

Fairs fair, Rafa did some great business with Gray, Townsend and Begovic along with the January transfers that we all now admire. He just wasn't, isn't and never will be... One of Us!

John Daley
24 Posted 20/09/2022 at 19:42:49
Nice to see that Rafa has a few fans on here

‘Rafa' fans? Really?

If any Evertonian is seriously a ‘fan' of the job he did here, then they've got bigger fucking blank spots than Jason Bourne bobbing about at sea.

I could never understand why a few persistently stuck up for him while he was here… with his team stinking the gaff out game after game and his gob alienating almost everybody inside and outside the club with his seeming disregard and self-aggrandising deflection – never mind now, after he's gone and we all saw the absolute horror show he left behind.

He dragged this club down to depths of hopelessness not seen since Mike Walker was rocking about with the same barnet as Ray Purchase's albino twin brother. He was well on his way to relegating us without even a semblance of a fight and would not have lost a single wink of sleep had he done so.

The rhetoric we heard while he was here was how he was a ‘winner' who was going to rip up the culture, revolutionise every department, that he was the right man because he wasn't afraid to make the tough decisions, a rapier-focused ruthless pro who wouldn't care what anyone else would think.

Now he's giving it the complete opposite and trying to seed the narrative that he was morally compelled to shy away from making certain decisions that would improve the club's situation in order to avoid any fresh claims of redshitery?

Bet when he was interviewed he never claimed previously managing that lot would result in him having to let certain things slide because of how it might be perceived given his past association.

Utter nonsense and being spouted solely to spruce up a soiled reputation in readiness to try and step back on the managerial merry-go-round.

Dale Self
25 Posted 20/09/2022 at 19:50:57
Trevor 20, it is a drag to see your post on the other side of the issue from me. I like to see terms like 'Benitezaurus' hurled by people who are agreeing with me but well played nonetheless. That was creative.
Trevor Powell
26 Posted 20/09/2022 at 2022/09/20 : 19:56:24

So Benitez has been whingeing to his Sky sycophants that he could not make his own decisions because of his own RS background.

Funny he seemed to make loads of decisions that were useless. He even doubts Anthony Gordon's mental and physical fitness.

Dave Abrahams
27 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:00:43
John (25), nice to see you back now and again John.
Kieran Kinsella
28 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:02:34
Richard Keys, who I can't stand, has actually had a very sensible response to Rafa's rant today:

“If you now feel full of so many regrets – hand your settlement money back. Apologise for believing it was possible. Apologise for taking the job!"

Peter Carpenter
29 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:12:04
Impossible to manage your way, Rafa?

Correct, because your way is dictatorial, out of date, arrogant, incapable of admitting mistakes and you have an ego the size of a house.

Bye-bye, don't bother us again, you dinosaur.

Will Mabon
30 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:18:41
"He even doubts Anthony Gordon's mental and physical fitness."

I have nothing of much good to say about Benitez, Trevor, I usually mentally edit him out of existence, but on this he was right about Gordon at the time (Didn't know he'd said it 'til now though).

Gordon had a strange lack of endurance for a young pro' footballer. Game after game, he visibly fizzled out early, essentially almost disappearing from play. This continued after Benitez's time.

He's much improved now – guess they sorted whatever was the problem.

Bill Gienapp
31 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:18:59
I saw someone on Twitter refer to Benitez as "Paellardyce" and I'm still on the floor laughing.
Dale Self
32 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:27:06
Paellardyce? Benitezaurus? I think we're misplaying this. Look, Stevie and Brenda are not well and both lack the mic skills to talk their way out of it. Well, Brenda can talk it but I think most see through that. So we've got a chance to be playing against the Benitezaurus leading Villa or Leicester.

We really need to reconsider what a fine coach he reeeeally was, caught in a whirlwind of owner twitching and general fan anxiety that just really, no I mean really, didn't give him a proper chance here. Yeah, that's it.

Ciarán McGlone
33 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:28:43
Haha... John Daley nails it as usual.

What a two-bit arsehole of a man(ager).

Neil Copeland
34 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:39:45
Dale #33, I think we can possibly add Newcastle to that list, the barcode fans love him and who can blame them?
Don Alexander
35 Posted 20/09/2022 at 20:55:29
It's real easy to pile shite on Benitez but the more savvy fans, above, have 100% bob-on identified at whose door the blame truly lies.

Those movers and shakers (as in all but shaking our club to relegation despite one of the highest six-years' expenditures world-wide) are still in post. We need to be very careful for seasons to come if we're to have proper expectation of trophy success.

Maybe, just maybe, they've for once made a right move with Frank's appointment but the financial cost in getting him onboard has severely crippled his and our ability to compete in the marketplace for a good while yet.

Nonetheless, Benitez is a self-serving mega-millionaire manager who enjoyed feeding off our numb owner and boardroom while it lasted, and beyond.

He and other such managers remind me so much of the preposterous "CJ" in the "Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin". His never-ending mantra was to say,"I didn't get where I am today without being able to spot a grade-one dickhead when I see one, Reggie!"

Just like Martinez did, and Koeman, Silva, Allardyce, Ancelotti, the currently still unemployed former assistant manager, and the latest manager of non-league Oldham Athletic (who's taken two of Finch Farm's finest coaches with him – if you listen to him).

Dale Self
36 Posted 20/09/2022 at 21:13:51
Cmon Don, spell it out. Hit that punchline man.
Ian Hollingworth
37 Posted 21/09/2022 at 01:23:13
Shit appointment and would have taken us down.

I cannot see any positives at all from his time here.

Very pleased we got rid. Red shite……. End of.

Christine Foster
38 Posted 21/09/2022 at 03:13:03
I think 99% of fans could see the relationship was doomed before his appointment was confirmed. Many tried to convince themselves and back him despite the previous appointments.

But even then it was a case of sticking fingers in ears and singing La-la-laaa songs and praying to God it wouldn't be as bad as you feared. But it was, he made James a scapegoat to show he had balls, Digne because he wanted to save face.

His bad run was not all his fault, but he was paid big money to cope with week to week. Alas injuries during major change, turn a difficult situation into a survival fight. One with which he had neither the support of fans or backing of the team to get out of.

It was a dreadful appointment for PR, but an even worse one in relation to his ability to turn it around. Any longer and we would have gone down.

Steve Brown
39 Posted 21/09/2022 at 05:20:46
Nick @ 4, he is talking self-justifying bollocks to excuse his utter failure in the role.

Every Everton fan has been listening and seeing what has happened over the last 15 years as well.

Darryl Ritchie
40 Posted 21/09/2022 at 06:27:41
Benitez is a competent manager…anywhere but Everton.

Without the support of the fans, the “project” was doomed from the start.

What were they thinking?

Sam Hoare
41 Posted 21/09/2022 at 07:36:01
“So I realised we had to change things inside, but I couldn't do it straight away because I was a former Red and it could be seen as 'Oh, he's come in to change our club'."

This is total bollocks surely?! He changed loads of things. He changed the backroom team, he changed the medical and science team, he eventually ran Brands out of the club, he got rid of two popular players in Digne and Rodriguez, he changed formation and players. He's trying to blame his failure on being restricted by others but I don't see much evidence of that.

The simple fact is he didn't get results on the pitch. If we had been winning and playing well and pushing for Top 6 then most people would have looked past his history, as has been the case to a degree so far with Conor Coady who has been appreciated for what he has produced on the pitch (though granted it's a slightly less inflammatory history).

Benitez made some poor decisions in his selections and tactical approach and failed to create much unity or fight from his players. His failure to accept responsibility is exactly why he was destined to not succeed here.

Peter Carpenter
42 Posted 21/09/2022 at 07:52:10
And thanks, Rafa, for preventing any of us from seeing James Rodriguez in a blue shirt, just because you didn't like him. (Apart from the lucky 2,000 in December 2020 – do they have the tee-shirts?)
Tony Abrahams
43 Posted 21/09/2022 at 08:01:11
John Daley, seriously? The club had sponked millions, and someone upstairs was saying things were perfect. I defended Benitez, because I thought if he stayed long enough he might begin to expose our very inept board, and especially a conniving bastard, who has played thousands of Evertonians for years.

I agree with Peter Mills, because people who talk sense on Toffeeweb, have that much hatred for Benitez, that they say many things without proof, and this imo, is the type of thing that has helped to keep Bill Kenwright at Everton for way to long.

Ciarán McGlone
44 Posted 21/09/2022 at 08:39:50
And the ones with proper sense are capable of distinguishing between club mismanagement and managerial shithousery.
Joe McMahon
45 Posted 21/09/2022 at 09:03:10
I'm not a person that carries hate, and I admit I prefer Rafa Benitez to Ronald Koeman, who I thought really was a dreadful appointment. At least Benitez (in his way) was interested. Koeman just came across as cold, distant and uninterested.

It was never going to work for Rafa Benitez and Everton, the "We know where you live” banners were maybe a clue.

Ken Kneale
46 Posted 21/09/2022 at 09:05:30
I am not sure we should waste too much time debating this man - he is in the past and was when appointed.

We should focus our energies on supporting the current manager and his team whilst concurrently not letting those who got the club in its current decades of death by a thousand cuts off the hook.

John Daley
47 Posted 21/09/2022 at 09:06:39
Expose our inept board?

He was there to manage a football team not take part in the shittest ever episode of Scooby Doo:

Shaggy: “Yoinks Scoobs, like who could be running around in rubber Kenwright and Moshiri masks, claiming to be Kenwright and Moshiri, acting like Kenwright and Moshiri and causing Everton to be crap all these years?”

Scooby: “Frucked if I know Shraggy”

Wilma: “Hold on a minute gang, those aren't freakish clown masks. They're the real Kenwright and Moshiri and they've just been acting as duel Jonah's again….surprising the sum total of absolutely nobody with their sloppy, spur-of-the-moment decision making and ingrained ineptness”.

Bill: “Oh come on kids, we've had some good times”.

Farhad: “And we would have gotten away with it too if…err…it wasn't already common knowledge it was our fault and we weren't out front and centre as owner and chairman, wowing everyone with our wank leadership, whatsapping lids from Sky at 1am on our way back from the 24-hour garage and regaling people with stories of how Warwick Davis nearly decapitated someone in the Boys Pen before Bill and Darren Day dragged him away causing the whole ground to start singing “Willow, Willow, Willow, Everton is your team, Willow”.

By the way, who is this hairy little firebrand saying “put ‘em up, put ‘em up”? I like his spirit. Rafa? Rafa? Consult the database! Never mind, just get him signed. He could be our Diego Costa?

Ray Roche
48 Posted 21/09/2022 at 09:20:42
No mention of the dozen ex RS players who came out of the woodwork to slag Benitez off as both manager and person then.
And I recall Newcastle fans being asked, at the time he was appointed here, “Would you have him back instead of Howe?”
A resounding NO!
Dave Abrahams
49 Posted 21/09/2022 at 09:33:08
Christine (38),

I think you acknowledge that Mr Benitez's job was made more difficult because he didn't have the backing of the fans and the players, the same players who let a few other managers down.

A lot of those players have gone now and Frank has put one or two on notice that they will not be needed besides getting rid, for now, of one or two others so we are starting to get somewhere after too many years going nowhere.

Rob Dolby
50 Posted 21/09/2022 at 10:01:05
Does anyone think that we would have stayed up with Benitez in charge?

Getting rid of Rodriguez regardless of wages deprived us the fans of seeing a world class talent albeit at the end of his career.

Unless he had a crystal ball at the time, he wasn't to know that Ashley Cole would be coaching Mykelenko and Patterson after he left. He bought 2 players that were not ready for the Premier League and got rid of a French international defender in the middle of a relegation scrap.

Buying Rondon!

No other manager in the Premier League survives that run of games without a win.

I actually think he was afforded more time in the job because of his background and the stubbornness of the people who hired him.

I hope he gets the Brighton or soon-to-be vacant Nottingham Forest job and we can all see how good he is.

Rennie Smith
51 Posted 21/09/2022 at 10:01:11
🎵 Always the victim...it's never your fault 🎵

And to think some people thought Carlo was a dinosaur

Eddie Dunn
52 Posted 21/09/2022 at 10:01:20
Benitez was the wrong choice but, like him or loathe him, he had loads of shit players with poor attitude to deal with. There are plenty of better managers out there who fall foul of the dressing room. Look at Tuchel.

If a guy wants to play it tough, the players and their agents gang up. The boss has to be cute like Klopp. Arm round the shoulder till they are out the door and up the road.

Benitez tried to sort things out in his pig-headed, old-fashioned way. Frank has realised that first and foremost you need the fans on board. Hence his little celebration in front of the Gwladys Street End on Sunday.

Rafa could never imagine that kind of relationship. In general, apart from a few astute signings, his selections and tactics unravelled after the early good start. Once things got tricky, the toxicity spread very quickly.

Who in the world would have thought he would be a good fit?

Aidan Wade
53 Posted 21/09/2022 at 10:41:43
Rafa didn't have a great squad but nor did he get the best of them which was his remit and the main argument for his appointment in the first place.

I think as the results got worse he was more concerned with his own ego and protecting his reputation so the players were being blamed and demoralised.

One of the things I'd give Lampard a lot of credit for was the way he put his arm around the squad when he arrived and basically said this is not as bad a team as has been made out by Rafa and his fans in the media.

He tried to give the players some belief and confidence and it was ultimately rewarded by some big performances when it mattered most.

Tony Abrahams
54 Posted 21/09/2022 at 12:05:22
Come and manage Everton, try and get rid of the high earners, and we will give you some money. But if you don't, then you are going to have to do with a couple of free transfers and a couple of million quid.

If you can find a player that cheap, it means that appointing Benitez under these terms was possibly the most ridiculous decision ever undertaken in Everton's long and once illustrious history.

But if they couldn't give him money, they at least gave him power, because he was responsible for nothing good, considering I'm definitely not prepared to give him any credit for running Brands out the club!

Benitez was an Usmanov appointment. I heard he told Hyman Roth to be quiet during one zoom call, declaring he had spent a lot of money on Everton, and this was the bit that got me excited.

But getting rid of old Hyman wasn't that simple, with the assassin having to be persuaded, with a line about history having proved that nothing is impossible. How a man can still be the chairman of our once great and illustrious club after helping turn us into plucky little Everton, is even harder to believe than Scooby-fuckn-Doo.

Danny O’Neill
55 Posted 21/09/2022 at 12:16:13
Tony, you do know Scooby Doo is real? If you saw my lad bounding towards you, you'd believe it!!

Wrong appointment from the onset that set both parties up for failure.

We narrowly escaped a disastrous one by 45 minutes.

My hope is that someone somewhere in the club has learned and is now listening as well as letting the football people get on with their jobs.

Inevitable cycles of choppy waves ahead but no rowing against the rapids and currents, frantically trying to avoid the edge of the waterfall.

Tony Abrahams
56 Posted 21/09/2022 at 12:19:06
People hate Benitez, I used to hate him myself, but so much lazy shite is written about the man IMO.

Won one in thirteen, just got rid of a player who he didn't like or particularly rate, but a lot of the fans loved him.

So who do you sign? An unproven left-back, coming from a totally different culture, meaning it was highly unlikely that he would hit the ground running. A reserve right back coming from a much weaker league, albeit with talent, and a player from Aston Villa, who wasn't getting a sniff on loan.

Whoever signed those players is a mystery, especially because they are amongst the better signings made since Moshiri came into Everton, but I wouldn't give Benitez any credit for these signings, because I don't believe he had any input into any of them.

Colin Glassar
57 Posted 21/09/2022 at 12:36:50
Simple truth is; Benitez didn't love Everton and Everton didn't love Benitez.

I thought we couldn't get any lower after seeing Fat Sam and Sammy the dwarf in our dugout but the FSW took the biscuit and led to my, almost, falling out of love with Everton.

I hope Moshiri has now learnt his lesson. And as much as I detest Kenwright, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt over those two appointments. Not even he is that stupid.

Andy Meighan
58 Posted 21/09/2022 at 12:54:29
Having only read the first couple of posts, so apologies if anyone else has mentioned this.

But really it had nothing to do with your "across the park" connections, more to do in my opinion with being 10 years past your sell-by date. As hundreds used to say, the man is a dinosaur.

Yes, unlucky with injuries etc but not the first manager to have to deal with that.

Your treatment of Rodriguez was shoddy, to say the least, and I don't give a flying one what anyone else thinks, but starting him in at least 20 games would have gained us another 6 or 7 points — I'm convinced of that.

We wouldn't have gone through the hell of that nightmare last 3 months of the season, that's for sure.

The Digne treatment was equally baffling; while no lover of him defensively, to leave him out against Brighton and play Coleman left wing-back was stomach churning.

A very stubborn man regardless of his connections over there, and let's face it, he was sacked there as well because the football was turgid. He just never got the club or the fanbase.

Should have gone after the 4-1 derby debacle but no, them loons upstairs thought everything would be fine. A strange strange appointment and one that was never ever going to work because, as someone on here said, he's only 3 or 4 bad results away from a crisis. And so it came to pass.

Can't see too many English clubs banging his door down, but ironically I see he's been linked with Olympiakos where a certain James Rodriguez is currently plying his trade.

Good luck with that, James, you're always welcome back here if I had my way.

No, sorry, Benitez wrong choice for us, wrong time.

Steve Brown
59 Posted 21/09/2022 at 13:01:38
Sam @ 41, indeed.

“So, I realised that we had to change thing inside, but I couldn't do it straightaway because I was a former red.' Benitez has more blindspots than an unlit country road at night.

1) He got rid of the Director of Medical Services, saw off the Director of Football, the Head of Recrutiment and entire recruitment department.

2) He sold off the players who provided most of our assists in Digne and James when Sigurdsson, the other provider of goals and assists outside the forwards, was not going to be available.

3) He brought in Rondon, Townsend and Gray who were cheap

4) He only won one game in 13 matches

5) He would have got us relegated if he hadn't been sacked.

The reality is that the only reason he got the job as he was willing to take the job with nil transfer budget. He was obsolete as a credible premier league manager and stranded in China, so the arrangement suited him and Moshiri. He gets back into the Premier League and Moshiri gets a stop-gap who would work on a shoestring.

It was doomed from the start and so it proved. In the process, the decision to hire him brought the club to its knees. That is why he will never get a job at a Premier League club again.

Christine Foster
60 Posted 21/09/2022 at 13:25:38
Dave @49,

The clearout is long overdue but much appreciated because it's not just about the level of skill of the players, but the culture and complacency they had adopted that was ingrained into the team.

The Everton Way.

It had to be broken and I said last season that we needed to replace 8 or 9 of the current squad... we have. So we haven't completely gelled yet, but we are working under a new banner... the "We take no bullshit" banner.

Tony Abrahams
61 Posted 21/09/2022 at 13:28:55
Proper sense, Ciaran@44? Can you genuinely tell me a time when Everton haven't been getting mismanaged or getting slowly managed into decline,since Peter Johnson put all his eggs into one basket?

Benitez was here about 7 months, but Everton haven't won a trophy for 27 years, although after the debacle of last season, at least the real shithouses have managed to have a strategic review.

Steve Shave
62 Posted 21/09/2022 at 13:32:15
What an odious narcissist Rafa is, topped only in the Premier League sphere by Allardyce. Their involvement with our club is a stain on the underpants of our history.

That said, I will give credit where it is due, he recruited well on a budget. I will not be pulled into saying anything else remotely complimentary about him.

Tony Abrahams
63 Posted 21/09/2022 at 13:40:34
I honestly don't think you can win when people don't like you Aidan @53. (Sorry, Bill!)

It wasn't that long ago that quite a few people were saying that Lampard had thrown his squad under the bus after we lost at Newcastle and Spurs because he was questioning the players' character.

Benitez also questioned the players' character very early on in his short tenure when he talked about it not being something you can buy at John Lewis but, luckily for us exasperated fans, this summer's transfer window has definitely started ironing out this very major deficiency.

Kieran Kinsella
64 Posted 21/09/2022 at 14:11:19
Rafa is like the Spanish Inquisition. If there are a lot of people you don’t like he’s great at coming in and torching them. But then he’s just left with a pile of ashes and has no ability to conjure up a Phoenix.
Raymond Fox
65 Posted 21/09/2022 at 15:04:06
Let's be honest, it's 90% about results; when you're winning, almost everyone is happy.

If we go on a bad run, the knives will soon be out for Frank.
I like what he has done up to now and I would stick with him long-term regardless because we have proved changing the manager every 5 minutes isn't the answer.

I'd no great axe to grind with Benitez one way or the other. If he had produced a consistently winning team for us, he would probably still be here.

Jerome Shields
66 Posted 21/09/2022 at 18:19:12
Benitez was brought in by Moshiri exactly because he was a former Liverpool manager. He promised Benitez his full backing on a limited budget, to change the whole Everton core that had prevented progress and lost Moshri a lot of money. But Benitez, like any other manager brought in on such terms, was on a hiding to nothing.

First, the fans could be easily turned against him and Everton backroom management, with the help of higher-up management, have a history of being able to down tools on a manager who challenges them.

A club manager has never the power to undertake such an objective. Moshri was trying to make up for his own inadequacies by appointing a manager to do so.

Benitez is a bit late realising he was a turkey being prepared for plucking and stuffing.

Brian Wilkinson
67 Posted 21/09/2022 at 23:50:25
As some others have already mentioned on here, Benitez was the perfect scapegoat for others to hide behind, if there was any upheaval, it would come straight at Benitez, while those in higher places sat back and knew the fans would overlook their past failings.

From Day one he never got the support from the fans, even three weeks into the season when we were winning, he was still getting slated, then came the injuries, not just squad injuries, but injuries from the back, right through the middle and attack.

People say that it was the fans that kept Everton up, yet we only did this when Frank was appointed, I agree the fans played a massive part, yet this was only afforded once to Benitez, when we played Arsenal at home, and no suprises we got a win.

No one can dispute his final run of games were shocking, no one will dispute in the end he had to go, but he never got the fans backing, early in the season.

But if he was indeed told everything is fine, then he is right to question it, he was also right about Gordon, when he played he was shattered after 60 mins, Benitez eased him in and steadily gave himself more minutes and game time, brought in Townsend and Gray, moved The big earner Rodriguez on, great player, shame part of our league games coincided with cold winters, have people forgot the games he missed, and being sat on a private jet, the very time City were pasting us, that he chose not to play in.

So yes Benitez will always be the stench of last season, but the stench is still at Goodison, getting away Scot free, waiting for the next scapegoat they can heap the blame on.

Ciarán McGlone
68 Posted 22/09/2022 at 08:50:33
Being a shit manager and being employed under shit stewardship are not mutually exclusive. Under Benitez, we had both. It's not a complicated concept to grasp.

The attempt by some in this thread to lay the blame at the feet of the fans is a disgrace and weasel words. Justification of a shithouse at the expense of a rightly disgruntled fanbase.

The fans were not to blame for shit defensive tactics and formations, bizarre substitutions, zonal marking, picking a fight with two of our best players, or his constant blame of everyone else but himself.

This thread is about Benitez... try and focus on him. In fact, let's not – let's not give the narcissistic fucker another thought. He's an over-rated arrogant dinosaur and was obviously an idiotic appointment. End of story.

Robert Tressell
69 Posted 22/09/2022 at 08:53:38
Personally, I think we hired Benitez because no-one else wanted the job other than a few very questionable foreign mercenaries.

He did a good job with the 20p he was given to spend, somehow managing to get the two wingers we desperately needed.

He also got extraordinarily unlucky with the Sigurdsson situation and Calvert-Lewin's injury – which together robbed a low-scoring team of about 25 goals.

If those two had been available, we'd have finished about 10th and Benitez would have been lambasted for not getting us into Europe.

Obviously he made mistakes and had to go in the end. I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief that Lampard has come in – and also, weirdly, looks a much better manager for having got us out of adversity last season

Jerome Shields
70 Posted 22/09/2022 at 08:54:42
Brian #67

The fans did turn on them and Brands fell on his sword. But after the Head of Medical Services and the Director of Football went, the whole club was mobilised against Benitez, resulting in 2 months of not playing. Benitez was always going to have fan resistance but he was fed to the wolves.

When Benitez was gone, with 2 months training out of the season, the squad struggled to get up to the standard of the other Premier League teams, resulting in a relegation dogfight. If relegation had have happened, it was Goodbye Everton.

But this does show that there are parties inside Everton who would sell Everton down the river to stop any challenge to their positions. As you say, they are still there and tried this Summer to organise a questionable takeover to get rid of Moshiri.

Never forget that it was fan pressure thar selected Lampard, not Moshiri, who selected someone else, or the transfer team at Everton who initially overlooked Lampard until Moshiri attempted to impose his selection on them. It was only then Lampard came into contention, backed by the fans.

Tony Abrahams
71 Posted 22/09/2022 at 09:29:25
When you say the whole club was mobilised against Benitez, have you got any evidence of this or is it your own thoughts after possibly putting two and two together Jerome? I got told a few names who were not happy about the treatment of Donnachie, with Luca Digne, being one of them, but I never heard that it was more than a few players.

I heard very early on in the season that Benitez, was having problems with the speed of the medical staff returning data on injured players, but I’m sure most players had got themselves fit by the time we played Norwich City away, but Duncan Ferguson had already met the board before that game, and after another diabolical performance, it was time for the Spaniard to leave.

I should have known better because the first rule of any successful football club, has got to be unity, and this was never going to happen under Benitez. I suppose Moyes had unity, but being best of the rest, was like winning the league for plucky little Everton, and their wonderful manager, and a “chairman who has always been nothing, but the club’s biggest fan - #NB”

Jim Lloyd
72 Posted 22/09/2022 at 10:28:59
I don't know how anyone can call Benitez a shit manager. He picked up two players for the grand sum of £1.5 Million and they were two of the most consistent players in the squad. He was instrumental in bringing Patterson and Mykolenko to the club and these look like they can be our full backs for the next decade He's got a brilliant record.

I just think a section of the supporters didn't want him under any circumstances and made it know during the season as well.

Spot on Brian (67)

It's quite interesting tio see the marked difference in the football we played in the first half dozen or so matches. I thought we played some excellent football. And the best goal I saw that season, was against Man utd. If I can remember right, it took 3 passes fro Allan just outside our box, to Gray on the left wing, who carried forward, passed to Doucouré who flicked it inside for Andros Townsend to hammer a goal in from about 25 yds. Best goal all season, for me.

It seems quite suspicious to me that the football went down the nick the way it did. A lot of what Jerome and Robert have just posted makes a great of sense to me. I also think there's a background to Benitez's appointment. On the football side, he was an extremely successful manager with a number of clubs, so it was the Liverpool connection that turned a section away. He was their manager, nearly won the league, won several cups, including the European Cup. The fact that he said in exasperation, that we were a small club, angered most of us. The thing was, he was a manager who was annoyed his team lost two points. Our manager was elated becauses we got One point!

Small club. well we're not a small club. We're a big club and a great club. The major problem for our decline was someone crept into this club on the back of others and we've been blighted ever since and became a small minded club!.

This is all assumption that follows so, no proof, open to derision or whatever else way you read it. I thionk MR Moshiri and Mr Usmanov topok so long interviewing Raphael Benitez, was just to see weat a good team manager he was; and they were well aware of his managerial history. I think they picked him for a couple of reasons, and one was not to do with just the team.

M guess is that it was to do with what Moshiri has experienced, since becoming a major shareholder. Basically, Moshiri has been hoodwinked by Kenwright into thinking he's the major decision maker. I don't believe that Moshiri had a chance of getting what he wanted while Kenwright's in the Chair. He's seen Kenwright fill the board with croneys, and the one man he got in, suddenly found another interesting (oh yeh) position, (Ryansove was it) I think he's the only one that Moshiri has included on the Board. I certainly don't think he chose Little Miss Dynamite. Kenwright was happy to fill the club with Old Boys, and in my view, runs the club.

I think Moshiri hired Benitez to look at all aspects of running the teams, the training, the backroom staff and, what influence does the Chairman have in any of those areas, then report back. That's why I think the club Hierarchy closed ranks gainst him. I include Brands in that, I think he saw what was going on and and just kept schtum.

I also often wonder why Duncan Ferguson was kept as assistant Manager for those years. I think the naercissistic F. er is the Chairman.He had to go for reasons already outlined but Benitez is a good manager, not a kopite.

Jim Lloyd
73 Posted 22/09/2022 at 10:38:58
Kevin Molloy
74 Posted 22/09/2022 at 11:06:38
I'm surprised so many people say what a shit manager he is. We've won nothing for decades, he's literally won everything there is to win, and with relatively unfashionable clubs.

And as for him being over the hill, look at the money he saved us last season:

  • Saved £10M moving Rodriguez on;
  • Got £25M for Digne, he's probably worth £10M now, and saved £7M on his ridiculous wages;
  • Replaced him with two players who combined are probably worth £60M now from a £25M outlay;
  • Brought in Gray for nothing, now worth £30M;
If he hadn't have made those moves, we'd be nearly £100M worse off now. And that's without getting into the value Townsend and Begovic have brought.

And all done without him being given a budget. Not bad, really.

Jim Lloyd
75 Posted 22/09/2022 at 11:23:06
Well said Kevin.
I think in the end,. he had to go for the reasons Robert and Jerome have stated. Let alone his own pride, knowing what was going on.

In the end, we've got Frank and, equally importantly, Kevin. Just what we needed with the supporters and team united, by the manager od DoF.

There's some more things we need and that's a change of Chairman, his C/E and a number of his directors. But we've got a good start.

Jerome Shields
76 Posted 22/09/2022 at 16:16:44
Tony #56,

It only takes a few, especially if they are well placed. Even more so if they have operated over a period of time, seeing off other managers, and were able to build up a structural culture. Frank has made many changes under the guise of better character, which is a smart move. Maybe there were a few sheep in the mix as well.

But after the apparent October International break bust-up, there was a noticeable drop in performance which went right through to January. The silence from Everton was deafing.


Kevin #74,

I agree, Benitez was not a shit manager.

Tony Abrahams
77 Posted 22/09/2022 at 18:03:25
A very good counter-argument to those dinosaur shouts, Kevin.

"We don't want to become a museum," said Mr Moshiri, although I'd bet a pound to a penn, that those words first came out of the actor's mouth?

We might have kept breathing, but it doesn't mean we haven't been dead for years, give or take a couple of those fabled good times, Chairman Bill.

Stan Schofield
78 Posted 22/09/2022 at 18:39:12
Since Moshiri took over, none of the appointed managers has managed to get us competing near the top of the table, which is ultimately why none of them stayed long. All sacked, except Ancelotti.

The difference with Benitez is that, he took us down the table to a relegation struggle. So, if the other managers got sacked for failing to progress us, Benitez was bound to be sacked for making our position worse.

The success or failure of any manager rests on results, and that is why Benitez was sacked. Any manager's personal attributes can easily be seen as positive if the results are good, but those same attributes are seen very differently if the results are bad. It is that simple, no more and no less.

Although a minority of Evertonians were unhappy about Benitez's appointment because of his red history, most Evertonians were, and are, focused on the results, and were happy to see how Benitez fared. And he didn't fare well, in fact he was worse than his predecessors as highlighted above. Like his predecessors, he made some good decisions and some bad decisions. But our results were terrible, so he had to go. That's it.

Jerome Shields
79 Posted 23/09/2022 at 07:01:32
Whilst other managers, in comparison to Benitez, decided to take on the culture of Everton in the last quarter of the season, as they watched life drain out of the squad, Benitez decided to take on the culture in October and watched life drain out of the squad in the run-in to Xmas.

He also got the news that having spend £100, 000 in the Summer, that a January transfer budget was doubtful. So he was stuck with players who where either injured or resisting his management. The only difference to this pattern was Silva, but he was shafted during the Summer transfer window.

Frank has made significant changes to the squad, with part of the objective being to change player attitudes. He needs a good January transfer window to cement this. Players like Patterson stretched off do not help. He also needs McNeil to produce.

Ciarán McGlone
80 Posted 23/09/2022 at 07:46:04
Saved £10M moving Rodriguez on;Got £25M for Digne, he's probably worth £10M now, and saved £7M on his ridiculous wages;Replaced him with two players who combined are probably worth £60M now from a £25M outlay;Brought in Gray for nothing, now worth £30M;

‐-----------

Hard to know where to start with this nonsense.

Brian Murray
81 Posted 23/09/2022 at 07:48:53
Jerome. So far it looks like McNeil’s only useful input is to shut Burnley up over legal action against us. Done them a big favour on that score. Still time, I suppose.
Tony Abrahams
82 Posted 23/09/2022 at 07:52:52
A lot of words for nothing then, Ciaran?

No disrespect, Stan, but when you say a minority of fans didn't want him, I honestly don't think that is true. Goodison was a strange place once Benitez was appointed imo, and being outside the ground before a lot of games definitely felt different.

It was subdued and quiet, you sensed that a lot of people were only going to the match out of duty, and didn't really want to be there, and that's another reason why I agree with you that Benitez had to go.

Danny O’Neill
83 Posted 23/09/2022 at 08:02:58
'Subdued and quiet' is a very good description, Tony. And it transitioned into the ground. Many sat, arms folded. It was a strange place to be for most of the time.

Almost like a dormant volcano that was simmering underneath waiting for the simmering anger to be unleashed.

It's Friday, I'm getting creative with my words. Well, in my own head anyway.

Ciarán McGlone
84 Posted 23/09/2022 at 08:16:43
A lot of words for nothing then Ciaran?

‐-------

No point wasting much time on made-up frontier gibberish. Anyone with a bit of wit can disect it for themselves.

I'll give you a clue.. start with the made up transfer figures that suit his argument and then move on to the supposition that Digne and Rodriguez would've contributed nothing last season.

Stan Schofield
85 Posted 23/09/2022 at 08:48:04
Tony @82:

I think there was only one reason why Benitez had to go, and that reason was the poor results. If the results had been good, there would have been no reason for him to be sacked, whatever his history and whatever the views of some Evertonians.

He made some good decisions and some poor decisions, but on balance he was a poor manager in terms of results, and I believe that's all there is to it.

If he had progressed us to competing near the top of the table, he'd still be here, and this applies to every manager under Moshiri, apart from Ancelotti, who chose to leave.

Christopher Timmins
86 Posted 23/09/2022 at 09:00:12
Folks, after 7 games last year we had 14 points, we then suffered an absolute collapse in form culminating in the Norwich loss away.

At that stage, we had gone beyond the point of no return with the then manager. He was sacked, as most managers are, as a result of poor results.

Graham Lloyd
87 Posted 23/09/2022 at 09:26:01
I don't believe it was ever going to work out for Rafa unless he got everything right and had us competing for Europe.

As others have raised, whilst our first 11 from the Carlo season was okay, the squad at the time was paper thin and once we lost, James, Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison and Doucouré, we were always going to struggle and there would be no way back for him.

As we live in Sydney, I was fortunate(?) enough to have tickets for the Brighton home game in January of this year, which we lost, and it was the most toxic environment I've ever witnessed at Goodison. I remember saying to my son that it would not be long now. It wasn't!

Anyhows… enough of the doom and gloom and things feel completely transformed in a short space of time. Even better, we are back in the UK soon and have tickets for the Man Utd game so hopefully enjoy some of the amazing scenes we have watched from afar since that awful Brighton game. It will be our first ever evening game so super-excited. My son has yet to see a win live so fingers crossed this will be it. UTFT!!

Kevin Molloy
88 Posted 23/09/2022 at 09:42:48
Ciaran,

Saying Digne is now worth £10M is being generous to Digne. He's in his 30th year, he's unpopular with the Aston Villa fans, and has another 4 years left on a £150,000-a-week contract. Nobody in their right mind would pay a pound for Lucas.

It is irrelevant whether he or James would have contributed if they had stayed, his moving them on and replacing them brought in the money I noted. James was on a million a month. I probably should have said we saved £3M on Digne's wages, in that he was probably on treble what Mykolenko is now on.

So yes, we saved £10M getting rid of James, we saved £36-50M in swapping Digne for the two fullbacks, to allow for the fact he's an ageing fullback who we got top dollar for (which we wouldn't now), and we saved £30M in signing Gray.

Jerome Shields
89 Posted 23/09/2022 at 12:07:37
Brian #81,

McNeil isn't a strong player, but he does have skill. I am hoping that he can be strengthened up in training. If not, he is an expensive mistake. Burnley did drop their complaint after he was transferred, so there could be something in what you say.

Frank needs skill in attack.

The one thing that Benitez did fall down on was individual coaching, when compared to Ancelotti and Lampard.

Tony Abrahams
90 Posted 23/09/2022 at 19:55:58
You are correct Stan, that’s all there is to it, and it was silly of me to disagree with you, that it was anything more than a minority who didn’t want Rafa Benitez, managing Everton!
Christine Foster
91 Posted 27/09/2022 at 03:10:00
You know in your gut when something wasn't right. The appointment of Benitez made me wince. It was a sick joke.

But for his attempt at rewriting the past, brings me to mind of that old John Lennon song, How Do You Sleep.

Steve Brown
92 Posted 27/09/2022 at 06:21:30
The interesting question is where will Benitez manage next?

If he is as good and experienced a manager as some have suggested on here – doomed to failure by the fans, trying to reverse institutional inertia, hindered by no budget etc – then he will have no problem getting a premier league job.

Danny O’Neill
93 Posted 27/09/2022 at 06:48:43
It was never right. Although I wasn't the most venomous and reluctantly accepted to give it a go, it never felt right, Christine.

I'm not particularly bothered if he goes anywhere or where that is, Steve, but it's an interesting discussion point.

On one of the other threads, we are talking about how Pep has kept himself relevant. I would argue that the likes of Mourinho and Benitez are dining off the past and haven't moved with the game.

A bit like that collective of British managers that Sky and TalkSport were desperate to succeed. The result being we had the same names getting recycled around Premier League clubs despite continued averageness or failure.

Tony Abrahams
94 Posted 27/09/2022 at 07:32:05
I have heard that he has just turned down a very big job in Spain, Steve.

Football management has been a closed shop for as long as I remember, Danny, in a sport that is constantly evolving, but still doesn't produce much innovation imo.

Steve Brown
95 Posted 28/09/2022 at 01:21:34
Spain makes sense Tony actually. He needs to build back up his reputation after his term here. Does he still have the curiousity and learning agility to evolve his approach to the game?

He has to, otherwise he will become a stereotypical figure like Allardyce who clubs hire when they are in trouble.

It is impressive, Danny, how Pep continues to develop his footballing philosophy, while Mourinho seems to be frozen.

Tony Abrahams
96 Posted 28/09/2022 at 07:46:35
Not taking anything away from Guardiola, but he's never taken over a team that have had any real problems just before he joined.
Danny O’Neill
97 Posted 28/09/2022 at 08:28:04
That's a really valid point Tony. Barcelona, Bayern Munchen and Man City. All set up for success. It was nigh on impossible to fail.

City had the building blocks in place for years and gradually improved the standard of coach before landing Pep.

In similar ways, Chelsea started their project in the mid to late 90s before landing Mourinho Mk 1. The building blocks were in place.

In my opinion, both walked into situations where it was quite literally put on a plate for them.

Not that I'm questioning Pep's qualities. Unlike Mourinho, he evolves and can adapt. And unlike Mourinho, he displays a lot of sportsmanship and humility. I always observe how he spends as much time talking to and shaking the hands of opposition players as much as his own at the final whistle.

Meanwhile, Jack Nicholson runs onto the pitch fist pumping in-between beating his chest in front of the tourist masses.

Apologies. I strayed into the bitter gutter there. When Saturday Comes, as they say. I can't wait for Saturday.

Andy Kay
98 Posted 29/09/2022 at 22:45:12
Still find it amazing the "Liverpool" connection being brought up again and not the "Boring, negative, defensive, Allardyce style, did nothing at Newcastle, Madrid, China, finished as a manager" connection that most of my Evertonian mates and I found to be the problem. Still why let the truth get in the way of a good anti Everton story

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