Well, this all turned dark very quickly, didn’t it? Two games in is no stage of the season for the kind of despondency that appears to have gripped a vocal section of the fanbase but, then again, Evertonians haven’t really been afforded the chance to feel any kind of new-season optimism or excitement heading into the new campaign because it feels like we’re still stuck in the last one.

Three members of the Board of Directors might have exited stage left but the most divisive of all remains as Chairman and the proposed investment from MSP Sports Capital that might signal the beginning of the end of Farhad Moshiri’s failed dalliance with Everton appears no closer to coming to fruition.

Four players might have come through the door so far this transfer window but one of them will be sidelined until the other side of the international break (to be clear, we still should have signed Jack Harrison), one is a “development player” for the future and one is a 38-year-old currently playing out of position… and not very well, it should be said.

With Yerry Mina and Conor Coady gone and Demarai Gray twiddling his thumbs waiting for a move away, the squad is arguably weaker than the one that finished 2022-23 and Everton have started a season with two defeats and no goals scored for the first time in 68 years. The clash with Wolves at Goodison Park has much more riding on it than it should so early in the season.

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In terms of the 38-game marathon that is the Premier League season, Saturday’s game won’t be defining or particularly impactful on its own, of course — although, as one of those home games the Blues should have won last season under Frank Lampard but didn’t, it could contribute to the team’s overall struggles if they can’t start picking up points on a regular basis — but there are smatterings of toxicity amid a palpable level of anxiety that could really be counter-productive if things start going south early against Gary O’Neill’s side.

That anxiety and frustration was illustrated by the reaction from an audible contingent of the travelling fans at Villa Park on Sunday to Dominic Calvert-Lewin yet again leaving the pitch injured, with some booing the striker as he trudged towards the dressing room. A narrative has formed around the striker, no doubt because of his “side hustle” as a fashion model, that he is somehow fragile and unwilling to push his body to the limits for the cause or is more interested in the catwalk than the football pitch.

It’s nonsense, of course — Calvert-Lewin is as committed as any Everton player and has spoken of how frustrating it has been not being able to play. And it was by putting his body on the line in that heavy collision with Emiliano Martinez that he sustained the fractured cheekbone that forced him off at the weekend — arguably 28 minutes later than it should have done it shouldn’t be forgotten, because it was clear he wasn’t right.

While disappointing to the player — and his father, of course — the reaction was if not understandable to a degree then perhaps not wholly unsurprising. It’s unlikely many supporters in the ground realised the nature or extent of the injury at the time and any that did would hopefully admit on further reflection and having seen the swelling on his face that they let their emotions get the best of them. Again, it should also be viewed within the wider context of a fanbase that is beyond frustrated and wracked by fear already of a prolonged and, perhaps, unsuccessful struggle to avoid relegation this season.

What isn’t either understandable or forgivable, however, is the racial abuse directed at Amadou Onana in the wake of Sunday’s defeat. There has been outrage from fans online, Everton have, of course, responded and, rightly, the police are now involved in what has become a criminal matter.

It is maddening, though, the outsized effect that one idiot posting a vile Instagram comment can have on the image and reputation of an entire club and fanbase because of the ease with which people can post such things online in the modern age and how quickly the pile-on can be instigated by tabloid newspapers and their Internet equivalents.

It also speaks to the very real dilemma both the players and Everton face in how to respond to incidents like this going forward now that they have very clearly stated their condemnation. (They shouldn’t have to but it would surely be best if all of the players deleted their social media accounts tomorrow.) There is no question that abuse and discrimination, racial or otherwise, needs to be confronted and, to the extent that it’s possible, eradicated from the game and the club were right to take a stance.

The question now becomes, in calling it out at every turn and as visibly as in press releases and club statements, does the club risk fanning copycat simpletons looking to provoke further outrage while also fostering a perception to the wider world that there is a racism or abuse problem among its supporters? Should they simply refer instances to the police from this point forward?

Only last week, a prominent national journalist, of whom much better was expected, seized on the furore around a social media comment aimed at Neal Maupay in order to besmirch Evertonians, overlooking the fact that the person wishing death on the Frenchman’s mother was a Fulham fan. The piece was subsequently  edited — slightly — but the damage had been done.

In the age of the Internet, social media, moral outrage, sensationalism and clickbait news stories, it is all too easy for a club or its fans as a collective to have its reputation trampled by the actions of a single individual who might not even live in the country. Or, in the case of a few scallies who confronted players in their cars after the Brighton game in January, by a tiny minority who are in no way representative of Everton supporters as a whole. (Which, incidentally, is also why Headlockgate was so ill-advised and damaging.)

Where the incident involving Onana is concerned, the irony is that perhaps no club’s fans have come further on the issue of racism than Everton’s in the past 30 years. Infamous for having no black players in the 1980s, a fact trumpeted by the ugly chant “Everton are white”, and for some fans throwing bananas at John Barnes, Evertonians (and Liverpudlians in general) are now among the most enlightened and vociferously anti-racist people around. Just ask the neo-Nazis who can’t get past the doors of Lime Street before being beaten back onto the platform by anti-fascist Scousers!

There’s an idiot born every minute and every club has its minority share of them. Everton’s Twitter and Instagram accounts have 3 million followers each so, again, while it only takes seconds for one numpty behind a keyboard — and it only takes one, probably someone too young to know the impact of their words — to post something vile trying to provoke a reaction, there will almost certainly be more posts like the ones aimed at Maupay and Onana in the future. The difficulty comes in how to deal with each new case now without making it a national news story that risks perpetuating a narrative of intolerance and bigotry among Evertonians as a collective that just isn’t there.

The prevailing image of Everton fans in this respect should be that lovely banner that filled a sizeable portion of the Gwladys Street greeting Moise Kean in 2019 after the racism he encountered in his native Italy, not the actions of some faceless, mindless individual on social media. It would behoove the nation’s journalists to keep that in mind and Blues fans to ensure that we don’t feed into the narrative so many in the media want to build around our fanbase.

Reader Comments (49)

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Phil Gardner
1 Posted 22/08/2023 at 19:22:01
I regularly get stick about the Barnes/banana tale and you can't condone that kind of behaviour. Odd though, my deceased father who was a home and away Blue for years commented at the time…'they forget about the abuse they dished out to a Leeds player by the name of Albert Johanneson, a black South African. Aside from the first time I'd ever heard that monkey chant that they do…that was very loud and at Anfield, when he became the 1st black player to play in a cup final against Liverpool in 1965, the chant around the ground, everytime he touched the ball was ‘Coco-Pops' a popular jingle for a cereal at the time!'

Isn't it strange that you never hear about that behaviour, TWENTY years before the oft-quoted, ‘banana-gate?'

Anyway…this, for me, is one of the most poignant and accurate posts I've seen for some time. Good work Lyndon, very good indeed.

Mark Taylor
2 Posted 22/08/2023 at 19:28:11
The club should of course identify the culprit and ban them from Goodison and perhaps BMD. Onana might be a disappointment but it's not because he is black. Our worst player right now is the very white Michael Keane. We as fans should condemn such behavior and I think Lyndon is correct, it is not a widespread problem.

My one small disagreement with the article is that the police are 'rightly' involved in a criminal matter. In an ideal world, the police would be actively involved in all criminal matters but at a time when they are demonstrably not, and barely invest any time in burglary for example, I don't think it's a given that they spend much time investigating words, however crass, ignorant and hurtful.

DCL was unfortunate to get booed. He played on with a broken cheekbone which is brave. I don't support the booing but I do understand it, in the sense we seem to have a large roll call of players, many with valid issues like DCL and Dele and for that matter the Icelander, but who give back very little to the club while taking, collectively very many tens of millions in wages. To those who don't earn much, that might seem an insult.

Peter Mills
3 Posted 22/08/2023 at 19:38:03
Lyndon, as always from you, this is an eloquent article. There is indeed much anxiety and anger amongst Everton supporters, which could explode on Saturday if things go awry.

I suspect there is also a sense of injustice, that the magnificent support, particularly over the past 2 seasons, is being attacked and undermined by idiots on social media, and the mainstream media – one can only guess at the motives of certain journalists; who is stoking their fire?

Much of the sting and angst could be removed from the situation if the words you have used came not from a knowledgeable journalist in the USA, but from a person in command of Everton Football Club. Tragically, such a person seems not to exist, or care.

Kieran Kinsella
4 Posted 22/08/2023 at 19:47:36
Mark Taylor,

I think part of the problem is that you get someone like Gareth Bale being paid £28 million a year in Spain and holding up a banner saying "Wales, Golf, Real Madrid in that order."

Or Michael Owen saying he basically didn't bother making an effort at Stoke and hated football. Or going back further the likes of Winston Bogarde happily wasting his career as long as he was paid to do nothing.

There is a perception, fueled by some that lots of footballers are lazy, jobsworths and skivers just concerned with cash. Obviously, there are instances when that's true.

Royston Drenthe and Jo for example have both in interviews during the last year admitted they didn't bother trying much at Everton as they were both concerned with partying. Both now regret it but the fact is they were taking the piss when on the payroll.

As was Dunc the player versus Dunc the manager. Or Bilic who played for Croatia at the World Cup between seasons of being too injured to play for Everton.

However, I imagine the vast majority of players do their best and give their all. But watching with envious eyes of both the chance to play for the club, and indeed the money they make, many fans assume the worst of every player.

Ken Kneale
5 Posted 22/08/2023 at 20:53:01
Peter - very true words on all points. Silence in this case is far from golden - it is allowing a firestorm to gather which is being stoked by persons with motives of their own for doing so
Barry Rathbone
6 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:19:30
Bad behaviour never actually goes away, it just gets controlled. The banana throwers and hooligans are still around in the same numbers as in the '70s and '80s – just policed better.

Look at leagues across mainland Europe – racism is endemic and kicking each other in the head is a hobby. Any place where the authorities aren't on the ball, trouble erupts.

If fans in this country weren't constantly under scrutiny, they would be at each other's throat at the drop of a hat.

In addition, the idea it's a small minority and EFC fans are better than others regarding these things is bonkers.

Sam Mellor
7 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:23:23
Sorry but the booing of DCL isn't understandable to any degree, it's a disgrace.

I appreciate people are angry about what's going on at the club but why would you ever boo a player going off in the first half which would only be due to injury? Not forgetting this is a guy that's talked about having mental health concerns in the past.

Trying to justify it even a little with the general frustrations with the club just isn't good enough, being frustrated or passionate doesn't excuse you from the expectation if being a decent human being. And neither does saying its something they might regret looking back at it.

This, along with the way players like Tom Davies have been treated in the past, makes some of the stuff that gets said on here about us being the best fans in the world really hard to justify. And it's completely self-defeating – if you're a player with no connection to the club, would you come and play here if you had other options?

Lyndon Lloyd
8 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:33:57
I should clarify, Sam (7), that I'm not condoning the booing of Calvert-Lewin in any way. It's awful to boo an individual player anyway and absurd to boo a player who has gone off injured.

I suppose what I was trying to say (and have adjusted the wording above accordingly) was that, for fans who have seen him come off time and time again and in the context of this ridiculous idea that he's either soft or not arsed because he likes his modelling, the fact that a minority chose to express their frustration in this way wasn't all that surprising.

I've read enough nonsense from so-called fans who feel that way to know that there is an element out there, however small, who doubt his commitment.

Tony Everan
9 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:40:19
There’s always a few braindead idiots support every club, somewhere in the world, we are no exception. If you wanted to you could find toxicity from a few at any match or Twitter on any weekend. Then if a media outlet was motivated, it could amplify that a million times and cause damage to a club’s reputation.

We were admonished for the Maupay abuse and it was found to be from a Fulham fan.

The few people booing when DCL came off, it’s not clear what they were booing, the ref? the goalie? maybe some idiots booing DCL out of despondency and frustration, one at two as a personalised attack?, maybe a combination ….I’ve got no idea ??

The one fan who posted a the racist remark, a complete idiot, disgusting behaviour and totally unrepresentative of the Everton fan base. Rightly given to the police to deal with.

As disgraceful as these actions were, the fact that the club and 99.999% of the fanbase are dragged through the mud by the media because of it is extremely disappointing, even disturbing.

There has to be some sort of counterbalance and proportionality to the coverage, otherwise the media amplification is nothing short of an agenda against any particular club which could be chosen at any time at all to denigrate.

It could also be used as a tool .. say a club was trying to sign a black player, but the selling club didn’t want to do the deal , what better time to shine a megawatt spotlight onto the buying club for racist behaviours . No matter that it was just one idiot fan from god knows where , who may or may not even actually be an Everton fan.

It’s maybe taking things too far but this stuff feels like it’s being weaponised.

Sam Mellor
10 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:51:00
Thats fair Lyndon, thanks for clarifying. I just found the incident incredibly depressing and frustrating.

I suppose in a wider context it does feel like football fandom (and society in general) is slipping back a bit in terms of behaviour and this seems emblematic of it.

Kiern Moran
11 Posted 22/08/2023 at 21:54:38
Well said Lyndon and thank-you again for illustrating why I love ToffeeWeb so much as for rising anxiety I think the team selection so far has alot to answer for.
John Raftery
12 Posted 22/08/2023 at 22:48:45
A timely piece, Lyndon, thank you.

Tony (9) There was absolutely no doubt the booing was aimed at DCL. I would estimate it came from two to three hundred out of the 3,000 travelling fans. It was accompanied by foul mouthed shouts of abuse from a few near where I was sitting in the upper tier.

Of course every club suffers from having a minority of thick-headed fans who behave obnoxiously. Unfortunately when a club is at a low ebb, they are the people who most attract attention in the media.

Russell Smith
13 Posted 22/08/2023 at 22:50:37
You only have to link in to the live feed on ToffeeWeb during the matches to see that a lot of TW followers can and do write some pretty vile comments, maybe in the heat of the moment, but nevertheless these “thoughts” must be in people's minds before whichever player or manager they dislike makes a “cock up”(in their opinion). So as many have said we do have our own share of bigots/idiots just like every other team in the country.

What we do need is a reporter from a mainstream paper writing a properly informed article on what is really happening to our club via Moshiri and Kenwright, and how the vast majority of our supporters are “the best” in a similar vein to Lyndon's articulate summary.

Mark Taylor
14 Posted 23/08/2023 at 00:12:54
Kieran @4,

Yes, I think you're right. Supporters set a high bar, and maybe that is justified when the pay is so outrageous. It does, as you say, mean that those who fall short of at least doing their all, or perhaps more specifically, are seen to fall short, are going to get a very hard time.

In a sense, we reap what we sow when there is so much money and avarice in the game – or at least those who work in football do.

Tony Everan
15 Posted 23/08/2023 at 08:09:36
Thank you John 12, for the first hand account. It saddens me to hear that it is true, I didn’t want to believe it.

There’s some very short memories on how Dominic carried our club single-handedly four or five years ago and helped us overcome some truly diabolical recruitment. All this when he should have been having a staged introduction to Premier League football. We used him now he’s getting abused.

Maybe there’s some sort of herd mentality going on from those who booed, born out of frustration of the bigger picture. I wish they would stop and have a think about it first and ask themselves ‘is this fair?’

Hopefully there’s a bit of regret now the dust has settled and seen the extent of his facial injury.

Kevin Edward
16 Posted 23/08/2023 at 08:27:08
I actually think that Saturdays game will go some way to defining our season.
More of the same and another loss at home to Wolves and anxiety levels will move up another couple of notches.
All football fans do is reflect society, yes the abusers should be weeded out by the stewards, police, other fans.
But how can you create a mega money business for all involved, marketed as world class entertainment with rabid media coverage and then expect people who have forked out £100s of pounds not to be bitterly disappointed at yet another capitulation.
Times change of course, why not win the dissenting fans over by putting in a performance on a regular basis?
Jack Convery
17 Posted 23/08/2023 at 09:03:48
An excellent piece of writing from Lyndon, that makes it clear we are not all (by a long chalk), racist, unthinking supporters. However we all need to be aware that, any time something within Everton Football Club or connected to it, that is seen as a negative or even tentatively connected,will be grasped by the media to paint us all with the same brush.

We are the club for kicking these days, even the Premier League, refs and VARs have joined in and not just recently. Niasse is still the only player to receive a ban for diving as far as I know.

The VAR decisions to go against us when we play the so-called, top 6 are too numerous to mention. Come October, we will undoubtedly be made an example of, for overspending, whilst Man City with numerous charges just carry on.

Maybe the next time the lovable reds get an Everton player sent off, by play-acting, we will do the right thing and tell the ref "He never touched me" – I won't hold my breath. They can carry on appealing and win their appeals but forget when a wrong red card helps them out.

Is it possible for the AllTogetherNow group to issue a statement on behalf of the genuinely decent supporters to condemn what happened at the weekend and urge those involved, to stop this behaviour and stop dragging our club's name through the mud?

Andy Crooks
18 Posted 23/08/2023 at 09:18:45
Football brings out the best and worst in some of us and there are plenty of loudmouthed fools everywhere.

I was at a game a while ago, sitting behind Danny O'Neill, and a fool nearby screamed abuse at every Everton player from the kick-off. When the abuse became homophobic, he was told to shit the fuck up.

I've said on here before that I believe that Everton supporters are second to none. I also believe that some people say stuff in anger and frustration that even horrifies themselves in hindsight. However, the tiny minority of regular gobshites need to be called out and booted out.

Rob Halligan
19 Posted 23/08/2023 at 09:22:49
Jack, an Arsenal player receives two ridiculous yellow cards, one for taking about five seconds too long taking a throw in, and the second for a minute shirt pull, therefore resulting in a red, which cannot be appealed

Yet a Liverpool player receives a straight red card for going in with studs showing, intent or not, which could have seriously injured his opponent, and has his red card rescinded. And you wonder why fans of other clubs get so irate at the injustice of it all.

Christopher Timmins
20 Posted 23/08/2023 at 09:51:54
In my lifetime supporting this club, this is one of the saddest periods – if not the saddest. Two games into the season and the level of despondency is palpable, just two games in!

It is obvious from our transfer activity that we have little or no money to spend; in addition, we are simply not an attractive proposition for young talented players. In fairness to Lampard, his name was enough to attract the boy from Belgium last summer, little did he know what he was signing up to.

This season is, I am afraid, another battle for survival. Anthony Gordon was sold in the January window, it may well be that his sale keeps us afloat. The profit on his sale, given that he came through the ranks, might make a significant difference when we are up before the stewards in October. The sins of the past continue to bite us.

The club does not help itself: it's beyond belief that Kenwright is still in situ. The club needs to keep the support base on board more than ever over the next 9 months and yet it allows the Kenwright situation to continue. At the end of the day, only Moshiri can remove him and, given his track record since he took over the club, I would not hold out much hope of that happening. Moshiri has been an unmitigated disaster.

It's not surprising that a significant minority of the fan base have had enough: frustration at the prospect of yet another season of pure misery, playing dreadful football, trying to scrape enough points in order to survive. It has taken it's toll. Maybe we will look back at last weekend and say "That was the straw that broke the camel's back". I hope not.

Next weekend is a crunch one in my view. We need a massive reaction from the team, resulting in a much improved performance and the first win of the season. A loss next weekend and things could turn very ugly.

We need to stick together, now more than ever. If we start fighting among ourselves, we have had it.

Keep protesting in a dignified way before and after the games and never stop supporting the team!

Tony McNulty
21 Posted 23/08/2023 at 10:06:40
All the outward signs are of a huge mess at Goodison Park, and in many areas.

Mindful of the difficulties Everton (as well as many other clubs) look to be having in getting deals over the line, I have been trying to keep my powder dry until deadline day is over.

After the Villa game, though, what worries me more is the seeming complete lack of spirit among the players. After the first goal went in, they looked like they expected to lose.

I don't envy Dyche trying to lift morale amongst that lot.

Brian Harrison
22 Posted 23/08/2023 at 10:22:51

I think the frustration is understandable, 2 seasons avoiding relegation by the skin of our teeth and we start another season with 2 losses and still haven't scored a goal.

Also, the pre-season games against many lower league sides didn't produce many goals, so with last season's top goal scorer out injured and still no striker signed, then it shouldn't surprise anybody that the fans are angry and frustrated.

Despite the last 2 seasons, we haven't heard a word from our chairman or owner. We were told some months back that MSP were investing £125 million into the club and would get 2 seats on the board; that story has gone very quiet… I wonder why?

The vile posts on the internet to Maupay and Onana, the post to Maupay was allegedly from a Fulham fan and the police are investigating the racist post sent to Onana. These people post these things on the net because they believe it gives them the anonymity to get away with such posts.

Seems most players have their own sites where they send and receive posts, but in this world you will get people sending these posts to these sites.

I know it's become somewhat of a thing amongst players in who has the biggest following on their sites. I guess it helps them when negotiating their contracts with new clubs, but I am not sure these sites are a wise way of going about things if you rightly want to avoid these vile posts being sent.

Regarding the booing of Calvert-Lewin, I wasn't at the game but could it have been that many couldn't see how badly his cheek had swelled, and were frustrated at losing a very important player, who has missed huge chunks of the last 2 seasons, and the thought of losing him again was just supporters being frustrated?

Kevin Molloy
23 Posted 23/08/2023 at 10:22:52

There is no difficulty in dealing with the situation of a numpty behind a keyboard. You ignore it. Just as we don't send in the police to investigate the scrawl on the wall of the gents.

There will always be bad behaviour. I don't propose to waste any time worrying about what an anonymous clown might in future write on Twitter from his bedroom in Thailand.

Rob Halligan
24 Posted 23/08/2023 at 10:36:40
Brian # 22…

Your last paragraph is pretty much spot on. During the game, we saw Calvert-Lewin collide with the Villa goalkeeper, and then receive lengthy treatment, obviously for a head injury.

Then, 20 minutes or so later, we see Calvert-Lewin slump to the ground and everyone assumes his hamstring, or whatever, has gone again. Not one of us could see any injury to his face as he walked away down the opposite touchline to the tunnel in the opposite corner.

We were receiving text messages before half-time that it looked like he had fractured his cheekbone. Hopefully he will only be out for a short while.

Bernard Dooley
25 Posted 23/08/2023 at 11:30:10
I'm very much of the same view as Sam Mellor #7/10 regarding the booing of DCL by Everton "fans" at Villa Park.
John Raferty #12 was there and estimated that maybe 200/300 Evertonians could have been involved in this pathetic action against their own player.
Yet Rob Halligan, a regular away supporter offers the excuse (reason?) that they couldn't see DCL'S face and assumed a hamstring injury forced him off, not a facial injury, implying "that's alright then" and no condemnation from Rob of the booing.
Very dissappointing.
Maybe Danny O'neil can clarify matters
Duncan McDine
26 Posted 23/08/2023 at 12:32:56
Bernard, I don't think for one minute that Rob thinks "its alright then".

John Raferty has explained from his first hand experience what he saw and heard... I think that clears it up for everyone.

It happened. The media will magnify it because that's what they do.

The many (yes many PF lol) fans that booed will probably be adhamed of themselves now that the booze has worn off, and hopefully DCL will get enough messages of support to know that we aren't all gobshites.

Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 23/08/2023 at 12:53:28
I'll go with John Raftery's view. Not acceptable but a vocal minority. Probably around 10% and some of those egged on by those around them and caught up in frustration.

No excuses though. Get a grip.

As always Lyndon, very well articulated. A few things to pick into.

Changes were made at the end of last summer, but it didn't go far enough Those who are still around remain silent and detached. The manager seems to be operating on his own without direction from the top. No surprise there.

The main divisive figure remains. As long as he does, it will continue to divide. How they can't see it beggars belief. The blind leading the blind.

Would his stepping down or removal change things over night? Of course it wouldn't. You can't change 30 years of stagnation in one week. We know that. But you can start the process.

A step in the right direction that would go some way to removing the toxic feeling that is brewing.

Despite the heroics of the supporters of the past few seasons, tolerance has a threshold. That threshold is being broken if it already isn't.

A feeling that will remain unless they do the honourable thing. There is no going back. They cannot come back. Ever.

If they are not careful, they risk becoming even more detached than they already are from the one consistent loyalty this club has. The supporters. And it will go sour quickly. It's already heading in that direction.

I wonder if the aim is to drive down cost to make it more attractable to investors? It tends to be how a lot of businesses wanting to sell operate. And then there is October and what the outcome will be.

The challenge of going online is that people tend to get brave behind the keyboard. It would be a lively debate face to face in a pub.

Then again, some people in attendance get a bit over the top. All heat of the moment but still doesn't excuse bad behaviour. Be careful what you print and think before you hit send or say. Especially in these days of Social Media.

I once got punched in the face and knocked over a car near the Bullen's Road by a Southampton supporting grown man when I was aged about 14. I was heading towards Stanley Park. Cornered by Manchester United supporters as we left Old Trafford with police on horses keeping us in check. I saw an Everton supporter punch a horse as we got told we were Scouse barstewards by the police with batons waving. Attacked by Manchester City supporters as were let out of the ground to make our way to the coaches in that dusty car park behind the Kippax at Maine Road.

No place for it now and generally, it is fine in comparison.

On racism. Shocking if that came from our own supporters aimed at one of our own players. No place for it. When I lived in Italy for 2 years, I thought I would go and watch Lazio. I quickly switched. Institutional racism with them on a scale you can't compare to here. I preferred Roma although they were a bit handy on the hooliganism side in a different way. Both have their Ultras.

I judge players on their footballing ability, nothing else.

Anyway, Wolves at the weekend. Then Doncaster. We are going to win that League Cup at some point.

Anyone who doesn't fancy it, just let me know.

John McFarlane Snr
28 Posted 23/08/2023 at 13:20:42
Hi Lyndon, Thanks for a great contribution, but I feel that it's not only at matches that unacceptable incidents are experienced.

I enjoy 'ToffeeWeb', which allows the fans to express their views, but unfortunately there are some who use it to ridicule players and other posters with what I consider foul language.

It appears to be that some of these fans/ and posters claim 'frustration' for their behaviour. Most fans are as equally frustrated and disappointed but do not sink to vilifying players or fellow posters.

I know that this post won't go down so well with some but I can live with that.

Tony Abrahams
29 Posted 23/08/2023 at 13:22:50
You say I never give you any credit, Lyndon, so thank you very much for a very balanced article mate.

The irony is that it's “the real haters” that want everyone to be outraged by the actions of a few dickheads, and if you don't agree with these dirty horrible snides, they will also try and tarnish you as well.🤷‍♂️.

Evertonians are exasperated and should take out their anger on the supposed Everton fan who tried to tarnish a whole fanbase with the help of his friends in the media, imo.

Hopefully by using the same intelligence used by the people of KEIOC, who then had to listen to the fraud tell everyone he was glad they had won because he didn't really want Everton to leave Goodison. 🤷‍♂️

Kenwright and Moshiri must go before they sink an old English institution into oblivion.

Paul Kossoff
30 Posted 23/08/2023 at 16:18:42
Phil 1.

I remember a lad called Paul Reeny Leeds United, I think his name was, I won't repeat the names he was called by the Reds.

Also I knew a reds fan who said he would never attend a Liverpool game until John Barnes was sold and he said a lot of reds fans don't want black players at the club. Utter disgrace.

Paul Richardson
31 Posted 23/08/2023 at 17:40:14
It is Reaney and he got three England caps. Lovely little player. Got abuse wherever he went.

Agree about Kenwright and Moshiri killing the Everton institution; they already have. Big issue is: What's next?

Mike Owen
32 Posted 23/08/2023 at 17:45:01
I disagree with the estimate of the number of supporters booing when Calvert-Lewin went off.

I was in the upper tier, looked around and reckoned that it wasn't any more than ten or twelve who were booing. There were a few of us shouting "He's got concussion!"

But the boo-ers, most of whom seemed to me to be at the rear, had big lungs and I think the roof would have amplified those boos.

I don't know about the lower tier.

Neil Copeland
33 Posted 23/08/2023 at 18:24:08
Mike #32, I was in the upper tier also and agree that not many were booing. No idea of the actual number but nowhere near 200-300 in my opinion.

Overall, I don't think the number matters much, none of us agree with it, however misguided or misunderstood it was. I am still not convinced that Dom was the target either, anger at having no capable back-up could well have been the main motivation.

Rob Halligan
34 Posted 23/08/2023 at 18:32:00
Bernard # 25…

No way do I condone the booing of Calvert-Lewin, I simply said none of us could possibly have known the injury sustained by him (unless anyone had the eyes of a shithouse rat) and therefore the minority who did boo naturally assumed it was his hamstring again.

After lengthy treatment and then playing on for a further 20 minutes or so, to suddenly just see him sitting on the ground, did make most think it was his hamstring again.

It was obviously easier for those watching on TV to see the injury he had as he walked away down the touchline, after all, there seemed to be a camera right in his face, something us away fans didn't have the luxury of.

I also agree with Mike and Neil, in that I don't think it was anywhere near 200 - 300 that John Raftery implies.

I have never booed any player in my life watching Everton, and I often have a go at people around me in the Upper Gwladys who do.

John Raftery
35 Posted 23/08/2023 at 18:37:31
Mike (32),

I was in the third row from the front of the away section. The booing was definitely coming from both the right and left of me as well as from the rear. I also saw a small group of fans at the very front of the lower tier waving two-fingered salutes as Calvert-Lewin walked towards the tunnel.

Whatever, I think we can agree it was from a small but very audible minority. Most definitely none of us knew the player had a fractured cheekbone. I think most around me assumed he was suffering concussion having been treated earlier for a head injury.

John (28)

You are right, it is easy for a discussion to plummet into a crude shouting match between individuals. Again, it's a small minority responsible but it's enough to bring the forum into disrepute. ‘The nutters are out on ToffeeWeb again' is the sort of observation I have heard several times over the years.

All of this is symptomatic of a club in trouble and the greater the trouble, the poorer the behaviour of some fans.

Rob Halligan
36 Posted 23/08/2023 at 18:47:32
Meanwhile, I’m watching Lucas Digne put in a superb performance for Villa in their European game at Hibs. Villa lead 3-0 at half time, and Digne has played a major part in all three goals, including two sublime crosses headed home by Watkins and Leon Bailey.

Now 4-0, and a hat trick for Watkins and a hat trick of assists for Lucas Digne.

Brian Williams
37 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:08:53
The booing of DCL has nowt to do with the situation the club is in and the frustration of the fans.
It's to do with the "intellect" of those that boo.
Every home game I hear the fucking stupidest and most ridiculous of shouts during the game and the reason is that there is a percentage of match going supporters who are basically fucking stupid.
One forever sticks in my mind. It's a guy from the London area who sits near me and when Seamus made a mistake last season he shouted, at the top of his voice, "Coleman you c**t."
What can you say to someone stupid enough to call Seamus Coleman that. It wasn't, and isn't, an isolated example of what's often shouted by a few idiots.
You get idiots in all walks of life but being lost in a crowd in a highly charged situation gives them a voice.
Unfortuantely Everton are no different from any other club in having a number of idiots who support us.
It's not rocket science. Put several thousand football supporters in one place and a number of 'em will be total balloons!

Mike Owen
38 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:28:57
John (35), we can each only offer our own perceptions. We'd need hi-tech equipment to get the correct number. But, yes, we are agreed it was only a minority.

I don't think many would disagree with the assertion that frustration among the Everton fanbase is seismic/massive/endemic. Each person can come up with their own word.

Over the summer, it was said so many times that our chances of having a half-decent season depended heavily on DCL being fit and/or the club signing a proven goalscorer.

We haven't signed one. So, possibly the sight of DCL going off injured on Sunday struck a nerve that resulted in some booing. I thought it was wrong and I was appalled.

Bear in mind that on top of his fitness battle, Dom has had to carry the weight of club expectation on his shoulders. Am almost surprised he could get off the ground in the first place.

Finally, Lyndon says something very much in line with what I've been thinking the last few days:

"there are smatterings of toxicity amid a palpable level of anxiety that could really be counter-productive if things start going south early against Gary O’Neill’s side".

I know the whole Everton situation is cracking us all up. (Seriously, I am sure it is putting a strain on the NHS in Merseyside, with blood pressure surging and people not sleeping). But on Saturday, we just have to support the team, every single one of them, and stick with them.

Joe McMahon
39 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:29:44
Echo are claiming MSP Sports Capital have withdrawn from investment talks over a minority stake. Apparently Everton's existing lender Rights and Media Limited being the stumbling block.

Christ we need some good news!

Gary Brown
40 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:31:33
Nice present from FSW that one eh Rob.
Bill Fairfield
41 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:31:42
The Athletic reporting MSP have pulled the plug on their investment plan.
Raymond Fox
42 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:37:10
5-0 now Rob, so villa seem to be playing very well. Makes our 4-0 defeat seen in a slightly better light.

Dont throw the towel in just yet lads.

We are still plagued with injuries again though.

Paul Ferry
43 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:37:34
John McFarlane Snr, I know that for you anyone on hear who "ridicules" players and posters is out of order and I agree with you in many if not most cases. It's football John, "foul language" is endemic off and on the pitch. It goes with the territory.

However, "ridicule" in your word cannot be compared to vile racist abuse and the sort of treatment that DCL was given at the match by some who were there say a small number and others who were there say was "many".

Peter Warren
44 Posted 23/08/2023 at 19:37:53
I agree entirely with the article. As for racists, they’re ignorant scum and I detest them.

In terms of DCL, if he was playing and scoring goals left, right and centre, not one Evertonian could care less. However, his commitment gets questioned when he’s hardly played for last two years and sometimes has had to leave the field by half time when he does but yet we see him doing non/football marketing activities which he gets paid even more money for. People, start questioning, is he genuinely doing all he can for us or not, particularly when he is paid millions a year and us fans spend a fortune supporting Everton.

I don’t blame fans questioning this. As it happens, from just listening to him over years, he strikes me as a very determined, intelligent young man. On the pitch (except back end of Lampards firsts season when clearly he wasn’t fit so wasn’t able to) he gives his all. His individual performances against Palace and then last year against Brighton, unquestionably were a big factor in us staying up (unlike Gordon’s big ego recollections).

Personally, I don’t question his desire. I simply feel very sorry for his rotten bad luck and fact he’s has so many injuries at his young age. I hope, of course, he fully recovers. However, equally I don’t know him and can understand why others do when he’s doing a lot of non related football stuff even when not being available to play.

Whilst you can understand his dad being annoyed, referring to fans as “bitter” does not help his son.

John McFarlane Snr
45 Posted 23/08/2023 at 20:20:12
Hi Paul [43] I have said on this site once twice, that I have heard most of the swear words, and that I even know what some of them mean. I get frustrated at the match, but I am able to control my feelings, like many on this site I have the misfortune to sit a few rows in front of a fan? who 'roars' his obscene opinions, ignoring the fact that there are women and children nearby.
I may have misread the part of your post which reads, However, ''ridicule'' in your word. I think that it can be read as "ridicule" in your ''world'', apologies if I've got it wrong.
Paul Ferry
46 Posted 23/08/2023 at 20:30:50
Hi John, I hear you and feel for you when some idiot let's loose a volley of filth around you at the match. I've also been there when someone who is taken to task - or in no uncertain terms told to sit down and shut up - turns up the heat and turns on the people who ask them to put a sock in it. This will never go away, sadly, as many on here are suggesting or implying.

"World" or "word" both work John!

Good health to you.

John McFarlane Snr
47 Posted 23/08/2023 at 20:42:38
Hi again Paul, at 85 years of age, I am not in any shape to challenge anyone regarding their obscene language, I have often been tempted to do so, but I'm afraid that I've 'chickened out'.
Paul Ferry
48 Posted 23/08/2023 at 21:42:19
That is not 'chickening out', John.
Bernard Dooley
49 Posted 24/08/2023 at 09:49:13
Rob #34,

Fair comment, Rob, and yes I'm certain you would not boo an Everton player.

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