Everton 21-22: No Not I, I Will Survive

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
@OCST would you still have been as anti-David Moyes a few years ago knowing what you know now?
Nope.

I’d fly to London on my own dime and drive him there myself.

But the-rot goes deeper.

-Of course it starts at the top. Majority owner Farhad Moshiri seems to mean well, and you have to give him credit for pushing the new stadium through, the most important development for the club's long term health. But the fact that throws lots of money around is not a good thing because he's wasted so, so much of it. He loves the shiny object, threw stupid money at Sigurdsson (54M) and Iwobi (44M, this after his pursuit of Zaha at ~70M fell through and so he seems to have gone for a weak simulacrum),
among others. He will not just let his DOF do his job. Think a less obnoxious Steinbrenner.

-Board chair Bill Kenwright is a holdover from the old days and represent the sentimental streak of “the peoples club"; all well and good but continuing to go to the well on this is not a growth recipe. It's the mentality that keeps Duncan Ferguson on as a permanent assistant coach through successive managerial regimes, and David Unsworth as the U23 coach despite that he has badly underperformed at the remit of that job - converting promising youngsters to reliable first-teamers or profitable sale assets.

-The people who have been responsible for player health over the past several seasons. There have been stupid crazy rates of injuries, especially of the soft-tissue, muscle-pull variety. Some guy just got sacked.

-DOF Marcel Brands. Of these I think he's the least culpable because I don't think Moshiri and Kenwright let him do his job. There have been some excellent acquisitions - Richarlison, Doucoure, Digne, Mina, Godfrey - and most of these I think can be attributed to him. But there have been several bombs also - Bernard, Delph, Gbamin. But he hasn't been able to take the reins.

The worst example of this deadlock - the window where each of these brought in a guy to play the same position - Sigurdsson, the shiny object, who at root was a Big Six reject (we love those) (Moshiri), Wayne Rooney, the old Blue (Kenwright), and Davy Klassen of Ajax, who Brands, formerly of Eindhoven, knew from the Eredivise. For good measure, Ronald Koeman, manager at the time, pushed to bring in Nikola Vlasic from Hadjuk Split, after he impressed in Everton's Europa League tie with that club. Well, that season was an unholy mess, Rooney was increasingly ineffectual as the season went on, Klassen couldn't handle the physicality of the PL, Vlasic forced his way to Moscow out after a year on the bench, and Siggy won the competition by default, having a couple of modestly productive attacking seasons that did not do enough to mask his deficiencies. Now he's out of the club due to an arrest for sex crimes with a minor, which would be addition by subtraction if we weren't so banged up and if not for the fortune we're pissing away on him.

-CEO Denise Barret-Baxendale - whom I’ve met, at a NYC Evertonians event- is the head of the business operation. Kudos for the stadium, which was her job. I can't blame her for the rest, necessarily, if she's the business manager she's not supposed to be involved in the football side, I was very impressed with her when I chatted with her briefly, and she bought a round for the whole bar which is class but let's throw her in there because she's part of the crew.

Someone has to be responsible for this, post-Roberto Martinez, who was the last stable and successful manager:

Koeman 58 games
Unsworth (interim) 8 games
Allardyce 26 games
Silva 18-19 60 games
Ferguson 4 games
Ancelloti 67 games
Benitez 15 games

Each of whom imposed a different style, got (too expensive) players for that style (while Moshiri and Kenwright were buying players for other styles), and didn't stick for too long.

It's a goddamn mess.



-Benitez. After being told that he had no budget he brought in Townsend and Gray who both started very strong, but there were huge holes, especially no backup at the fullbacks - promising academy product LB Niels Nkonkou was stupidly sent out on loan, and criminally, again, no one was brought in to compete with, back up, or replace Seamus Coleman, who played in Goodison's first game in 1892.

As you know we initially did well with a simple, direct counterattacking approach, D[/QUOTE]oucoure and Allan excelling in midfield, Calvert-Lewin a great 9 up top. But the cracks should have been evident, the back four was wobbly, Godfrey who had been a beast, arguably last season's best player, a shell of himself due to COVID. Yerry Mina emerged as a stud CB but once again got hurt as he does every year, his hamstrings are made of play-doh. Doucoure, who covered the most ground per game in the PL and was second in goal contributions in the league at the time, got hurt. Calvert-Lewin, Gomes, it doesn't stop. Allan fading, he's on the wrong side of 30 and his effectiveness has dropped, without Douc beasting next to him he's ordinary. Townsend has regressed to the mean, a useful piece but not elite. Some players regressing in form, Richarlison and Digne really poor, Coleman just can't do it game in game out, Pool made him look like a traffic cone, Gomes, Holgate and Davies badly off their best form and may not ever be full time PL regulars again or ever, Keane at his best was Everton's best player for stretches in the past two seasons and forced his way into Southgate's squad, but is prone to dips in confidence and has been terrible without Mina alongside him. Etc.

Rafa was winning over the fans when we were a couple of points off the top. When the slide started he was given some rope, everyone knows that our best XI can be very good but the squad quality drops off, the injuries aren't his fault, etc. But the last few games have been really poor from Rafa. He keeps rolling out the corpse of Salomon Rondon, whom he's managed elsewhere but in addition to being over the hill hasn't played since China two years ago and has been abysmal - like, so far beyond PL quality it's impossible to believe and yet he keeps.getting.run.out.there. He's also tried to persist in a midfield two, but Douc is just back from injury, Allan is fading, and any fool could have told you that we were going to get sliced to ribbons by the Reds without another body in midfield. Sure enough they had all day - for the first goal, Henderson didn't have a blue shirt within ten yards of him and had plenty of time to set up his screamer. For a coach with a reputation for defensive solidity it's embarrassing to watch that Liverpool game, the shape and positional discipline is awful. I'm not kidding to say that Sam would be doing a better job at the moment, at least the lines would move as a unit.

-The players. Leading Watford (Watford FFS) 2-1 at 75' and giving up four goals, at home, is inexcusable, full stop. If you want to see what "capitulation" looks like go watch that. When they've gelled they have been capable of hanging around the fringes of the European spots but game over game, season over season they've just not shown guts, leadership, guile, whatever you want to call it. With a very few exceptions, if you have players who have failed to convince under multiple managers at some point you have to move on.

The major fan groups have coordinated this for the Arsenal game on Monday:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-10273505/Everton-fans-plan-walkout-protest-against-clubs-board-27th-minute-game-Arsenal.html

Angry Everton fans plan a walkout protest against the club's board in the 27th minute of their home clash with Arsenal on Monday, as they use their long trophy drought to demand better amid eight-game winless run
  • Everton fans will stage a walkout protest during Monday's game against Arsenal
  • Frustration has been growing among supporters amid an eight-game winless run
  • There is anger at the board for a lack of ambition after 27 years without a trophy
  • Chants of ‘sack the board’ were heard in 4-1 defeat by Liverpool on Wednesday
47001

"nil satis nisi optimum" = "nothing but the best is good enough," motto on the badge

View: https://twitter.com/thebullensview/status/1466851499225591808?s=20


(a dozen fan groups have posted this)

Beyond the hiring of Moyes, West Ham are a good comp. Only a couple of seasons, ago, they flirted with the drop and had the same kind of fan revolt in the stadium and on social media. They solidified and look at them now. It's also fair to point out IMO that they have had remarkable luck with injuries this year, they've been mostly healthy, and if you look at our best XI on paper next to theirs, we're in the same cohort. So there's hope, but there's also frustration of looking over at what they've done and realizing that even as poorly as they've been run for the past few years they're doing what we haven't been able to.

The big problem is that firing the manager AGAIN, what's that going to do? More instability. As per my avatar, they all need to go. Or at least, Moshiri needs to get rid of Kenwright, give Brands his transfer budget, let Brands hire the manager that fits his philosophy, and stand back and let him work.

As Napoleon said, five bad generals are worse than one bad general.

Having written this novel, as I tend to do, I have to go earn a living for the next few days. You won't be hearing from me. We'll see what happens.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
Can’t disagree with any of them getting axed but imo he’s not been given a free hand and is the least culpable.

its going to be hard to convince anyone decent to take the job.

Rafa was fiercely opposed by a section for the fan base because of his Red history, well the Pool fans at Goodison were singing his name mockingly.

But Firing manager after manager doesn’t work. And who do you get anyway.

The fans are furious with Moshiri for not answering questions or addressing the fans about the direction of the club. His only public statement was a text to Jim White of Talksport who is the only journalist he talks to that he had confidence in Rafa. A text. He wasn’t at the derby either, did he have somewhere else to be?

I don’t see a way back.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
Mina back today, still no Calvert-Lewin.

Digne benched. He's been in terrible form, as you FPL players know. But Rafa doesn't want him attacking, which is his strong suit. He wants Digne back and defending, and he's not really a defensive fullback. So he's been sulking. A "veteran player" shat on Rafa to The Athletic (I think it was) this week, and it was pretty clear it was Digne. Rafa left him out of the match day squad and made clear that he's not hurt.

So here's another pile of crap. To be fair to Rafa, he's the boss, it's his way or the highway. If he's going to power-trip, it's all yours buddy. And Digne has been terrible and on the merits of his play he needs to sit. But we have a CB playing LB because we don't have anyone else. We have a shell-shocked squad. We have a crowd that's walking out at the 27th minute. It feels ugly, ugly, ugly.

We either rally and win today 5-0 or we lose 5-0 and then I honestly don't know.
 
Jul 15, 2005
3,097
Chicago
There were so many injuries last season that Carlo had to play with 4 CBs last season. Mina lasted 30 minutes before being subbed off? Perhaps he should have been on for the final 10 to slowly rebuild match fitness
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
There was the fight back everyone wanted to see.

the walkout at 27’ was a dud. The crowd was fully behind the club.

The Arsenal goal was a microcosm of the season. Coleman, a step slow at 33, playing 90 every week with no backup, let an easy cross beat him. Playing with only a pivot two, the midfield was wide open for Odegaard. Mina, in his first game in more than a month, came off early with yet another hammy, so the shot came right through the Mina/sized void.

Plenty of endeavor throughout but the game didn’t turn until Gomes, another coming back from injury, replaced the ineffective Townsend, who may be regressing to the mean after a blistering start. Gomes was fantastic getting forward, the switch to a midfield three letting Gomes and Doucoure get on the front foot and leaving Allan in the deeper lying DM role where he excels.

at the death - another season theme- the wonder goal from Gray.

Digne benched.Lets see what happens. Rafas setup does not play to his strengths but he’s been terrible.

Rot stopped. Questions remain. Rafa still not trusted. Squad painfully thin. If one thing comes out of it, let’s hope that he goes 433, we just get shredded without that extra body.
 

Mighty Joe Young

The North remembers
SoSH Member
Sep 14, 2002
6,706
Halifax, Nova Scotia , Canada
Sounds like the fan walk out was kind of a dud. From a distance (the other side of Stanley Park by way of Nova Scotia) it looks like the owner‘s primarily to blame. But, seeing as how he’s willing to pony up a fortune on the team he gets a pass and it’s on the board? I wouldn’t be blaming Rafa for anything.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
Sounds like the fan walk out was kind of a dud. From a distance (the other side of Stanley Park by way of Nova Scotia) it looks like the owner‘s primarily to blame. But, seeing as how he’s willing to pony up a fortune on the team he gets a pass and it’s on the board? I wouldn’t be blaming Rafa for anything.
It was a dud but that's a good thing. The 27th minute had Everton on the front foot and Richarlison taking a corner, so it was kind of "let's see if we score before we protest."

Barry Glendennig of the Guardian, a dry wit (check out the Guardian Football Weekly podcast) had this to say beforehand:

“It costs a lot of money to look this cheap,” Dolly Parton once said, and it is a quotation that may resonate with Everton fans as they click through the Goodison Park turnstiles tonight before their team’s match against Arsenal. Since Farhad Moshiri took control of the club five years ago, the thick end of £500m has been spent on players, who between them have somehow combined to make the grand old team demonstrably worse....

Everton fans are unconvinced and some supporter groups are planning a protest at tonight’s game, although it remains to be seen how many will take part or what exactly it is about their free-spending owners, proven trophy-winner of a manager and array of very expensive players they are protesting. Entitled #27minutesfor27years, the planned protest references the number of years Everton will have gone without a trophy come the end of this season and fans are encouraged to walk out of Goodison Park in the 27th minute, a full eight minutes later than it took many of them to abandon ship during their recent drubbing at the hands of Liverpool.

Tired of the chaotic behind-the-scenes activities they believe to be to blame for the current on-field shambles, those behind #27minutesfor27years want Moshiri to keep spending money but instigate a boardroom cull, stop communicating club business through favoured Scottish talk radio presenters and give them some face time so they can voice their concerns in the hope all concerned can get more bang for their emotional and financial buck. Fan reaction to the planned protest has been predictably mixed and if the current squabbling on various social media websites is anything to go by, those behind the #27minutesfor27years show of dissent may discover their fans are no better at singing from the same hymn sheet than the very people they are railing against.
But whatever, the park was rocking and it was a passionate and committed performance from the team. Especially Richy, who could have gone into sulk mode after first one goal, then another, were VAR'd off for offside, neither was called on the pitch. The first was offside, although it was close and I've seen the likes of it stand; the second, if it was off, was by a toenail and is the kind of call that VAR is not supposed to be making this season. He just kept at it and scored the equalizer on a gorgeous header straight off a crossbar rebound. In his celebration he mock-waved a linesmans' flag (lucky not to get a yellow) and he posted later about his hat trick. So yeah, piss and vinegar and it was welcome.

The problems still run deep. Rafa is still mistrusted and even loathed by a good chunk of the fanbase. Moshiri's player acquisition instincts are not good. Brands out means one fewer cook in the kitchen, but he was the best judge of talent IMO and it's one less voice to keep Moshiri in check. The payroll remains bloated and it will be some time before the problem contracts are off the books, maybe some can be sold at a steep loss. The squad depth is nonexistent. But for one night they gave the crowd the Everton they want to see.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
Everton are probably the worst-run club in the PL. This is a pretty amazing chart:

View: https://twitter.com/SwissRamble/status/1338378138397585410


When you're losing as much money as City and Chelsea did to build championship sides, but you're continually stuck in midtable, something is very, very wrong.
That’s what big money on the likes of Sandro Ramirez, Alex Iwobi, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Cenk Tosun, Ashley Williams, Fabian Delph, and Morgan Schneiderlin gets you. Not to mention buyouts paid out to 4 managers at a time.

It’s all Moshiri. He’s a benign (in terms of being a pleasant guy) Dan Snyder or Ted Stepien. Nice guy. Got the stadium done when his prececessors didn’t. But JFC he threw money around like a sailor on shore leave, snd not even with a vision - just collecting shiny objects.
 

67YAZ

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 1, 2000
5,100
Yikes, and that doesn’t appear to include the upcoming costs for stadium club construction.
 

coremiller

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
5,473
That’s what big money on the likes of Sandro Ramirez, Alex Iwobi, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Cenk Tosun, Ashley Williams, Fabian Delph, and Morgan Schneiderlin gets you. Not to mention buyouts paid out to 4 managers at a time.

It’s all Moshiri. He’s a benign (in terms of being a pleasant guy) Dan Snyder or Ted Stepien. Nice guy. Got the stadium done when his prececessors didn’t. But JFC he threw money around like a sailor on shore leave, snd not even with a vision - just collecting shiny objects.
It doesn't quite make sense. Moshiri is not an idiot; he didn't get rich by throwing 100s of millions of pounds away needlessly. And while he's rich, he's not Qatar or UAE or even Abramovich rich. Wikipedia says he's worth about 2 billion GBP, so the 250m GBP Everton have lost the last couple years represents a meaningful share of his net worth, and likely an even larger share of his liquidity. I wonder if his Everton dealings involve some sort of money laundering scheme.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
Everton are probably the worst-run club in the PL. This is a pretty amazing chart:

View: https://twitter.com/SwissRamble/status/1338378138397585410


When you're losing as much money as City and Chelsea did to build championship sides, but you're continually stuck in midtable, something is very, very wrong.
That’s what big money on the likes of Sandro Ramirez, Alex Iwobi, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Cenk Tosun, Ashley Williams, and Morgan Schneiderlin gets you.

It’s all Moshiri. He’s a benign (in terms of being a pleasant guy) Dan Snyder or Ted Stepien. Nice guy. Got the stadium done when his prececessors didn’t. But JFC he threw money around like a sailor on shore leave.
 
Jul 15, 2005
3,097
Chicago
from Rafa's presser today on Lucas Digne: "I think Lucas was clear, the manager decides. He has been training today, we will decide tomorrow. Everyone has to be focused and realise the priority is the team."

Rafa: 1
Digne: 0
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
from Rafa's presser today on Lucas Digne: "I think Lucas was clear, the manager decides. He has been training today, we will decide tomorrow. Everyone has to be focused and realise the priority is the team."

Rafa: 1
Digne: 0
Rafa's track record is zero coddling of egos, as opposed to Ancelloti who did little else. See Carlo Ham-ezzz in with great fanfare, and Rafa trundling him off to Al-Rayyan SC.

At root there is an identity crisis at Everton, which there has been since the end of the Moyes era. Moyes' squads epitomized the classic Everton identity: hard tackling, never wquit, Goodison a bear pit, a little bit of attacking flair but more bash than dash. Moyes didn't have a lot of money to spend so he found work horses, not show horses (again, for the most part). It was relatively successful for several years.
Screen Shot 2021-12-10 at 11.51.42 AM.png

03/04 came very close to the drop as you see - 17th to 4th the next season, that's a real set of outliers, but for the most part Everton were just outside of the elite for several years with Moyes-ball.

Of course he was then off to Old Trafford, and Martinez came in, and got us up to 5th, playing a prettier brand of footy. But here's where the identity crisis set in IMO. Frustrated with the ceiling on the Moyes style, the fans wanted to open up, but you can't have a side that gets stuck in with the crunching tackles and also threads together 50-pass tiki-taka sequences culminating in worldies. To be a side that embraces its roots as The People's Club in a blighted old docks town and an aspirant to Contential style at the same time. Well, you can try, but few clubs do, and those clubs have more money. In an effort to be all things to all people, but most of all to be opposite of what got the last guy run out of town, Everton threw gobs of cash in all directions at once, accomplishing little except to cycle through managers, leaving each new guy with the overpriced remnants of several failed regimes, all brought in for different philosophies.

Youze are footy fans enough to know the styles of these managers. Look not only at the lurch from one style of play to the next, but the gyration in points and G/GA:

Screen Shot 2021-12-10 at 12.03.59 PM.png

There were/are enough good players and high points in there to keep just the whiff of hope alive, which is what kills you. There was a good piece - can't find it at the moment - about how Rafa wants to play simple, direct, kind of boring but defensively solid and dependable football, but the Arsenal win was about passion, chasing lost causes, getting the crowd into it, moments of individual brilliance. Those are all great but they're not sustainable game in and game out.

So even as Rafa is widely disliked, there is a significant taste among the fans to rein in some of these prima donnas who steal huge paychecks and don't play with commitment. Digne's been subpar for more than a calendar year now, for France too. He's had no one pushing him. Maybe Rafa pushes him out and we get a good sell-on. Maybe tough love gets his head on straight.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/dominic-calvert-lewin-everton-injury-22538754

Everton star Dominic Calvert-Lewin says he hopes to make his return from injury on Boxing Day when Everton visit Burnley in the Premier League.

The 24-year-old was speaking to Everton-mad youngster Dylan, who enjoyed an early Christmas surprise when he was called unexpectedly by striker.

Dylan, whose family are all huge Blues’ fans, is recovering at home after recently undergoing nine hours of emergency surgery to remove a brain aneurism, which has left him needing rehabilitation to assist with his speech and eyesight.

When speaking to Dylan and his father via video call, the England international says he hopes to be back in action against Burnley.

"I'll hopefully back training with the team next week and hopefully play Boxing Day," he said.

"I think so [the longest he's been out], I've never really suffered with muscle injuries. I did a bit as a kid but it’s the first time my body has really let me down.

“It’s difficult because footy is my purpose. It’s been difficult at times.

“To get so close to coming back and get injured again, that’s why it’s been so difficult this time around.”
It's terrible what this club does to people.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
didn't watch because I was driving, but read enough to know what happened in our 2-3 loss to Brighton at home.

still feuding with Digne, Rafa played Godfrey, Keane, and Holgate as three CBs, with the less-than-servicable Jonjoe Kenny at RB and, incredibly, Seamus Coleman at LB. Coleman can't even play his natural position of RB anymore.

A midfield two of Doucoure and Allan, which was working at the beginning of the season, but every time we've played without three in the middle in the past two months we've gotten slaughtered. Allan has been run into the ground and Doucoure has been mediocre since coming back from a foot injury.

Bringing on his binky, the corpse of Salmon Rondon, when chasing the game late - he's been maybe the worst player in the PL this year. Josh Sargent has done a better job as striker.

Terrible selection, terrible tactics, terrible man-management, repeating the same mistakes again and again, disjointed and disorganized team on the pitch....

one win in the last twelve games. 6 points out of a possible 36 in that span.

Moshiri has gone all-in on Rafa and I don't think he can back out now. I also desperately do not want yet more instability. But this is awful. It's the worst I've seen, not only with Everton, but with any side in recent memory. Sheffield Utd's crashing to earth last season is the only comparable.

Nothing more to say really.
 

kobayashis bail bonds

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 17, 2005
78
Maine
I've still been giving Rafa the benefit of the doubt, but honestly there's no rationale for that formation he lined up against Brighton. I no longer am a believer; that was the final tipping point for me. And yet, I'm hoping they keep him, because the revolving door has to stop sometime. Sigh.
 
Last edited:

Rwillh11

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
188
I've stillbeen giving Rafa the benefit of the doubt, but honestly there's no rationale for that formation he lined up against Brighton. I no longer am a believer; that was the final tipping point for me. And yet, I'm hoping they keep him, because the revolving door has to stop sometime. Sigh.
Yeah, pretty much the same with me. I don't even mind the Digne sale, although it's frustrating the way it's been handled - but it makes sense to try and get some value for him now and bring in a young replacement, especially since there is no chance of Europe this year. I almost get 5 at the back against Brighton, because of how weak the midfield options are right now (although I think Gomes could have been decent in a midfield 3 in that scenario), but Coleman at left back with Digne on the bench was a bridge too far for me.

That said, I hope they don't fire Rafa until the season is over, and am fine with them keeping him around if he can turn things around. A new manager every 6-12 months isn't sustainable, and most of the problems now can be traced back to the awful signings of 4-5 seasons ago finally coming due.
 

fletcherpost

sosh's feckin' poet laureate
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
10,781
America
By the way guys. I think Nathan Patterson could be a really good signing. I've watched most of his matches for Rangers and Scotland and always thought he was a quality player who stood out. He's young and he hasn't got a lot of games under his belt, but he's Scotland's best right back, he's got 6 caps and scored an important goal for us in the WC Qualifiers. Steven Gerrard really rated him.

He's quick, skillful, can get up and down the pitch, likes to take a player on. If it doesn't work out, sell him back to Rangers in 18 months.

I'd love to see him do well at Everton. I want to see him play against better players, see if he can push on frrom here. He's got the raw materials.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
By the way guys. I think Nathan Patterson could be a really good signing. I've watched most of his matches for Rangers and Scotland and always thought he was a quality player who stood out. He's young and he hasn't got a lot of games under his belt, but he's Scotland's best right back, he's got 6 caps and scored an important goal for us in the WC Qualifiers. Steven Gerrard really rated him.

He's quick, skillful, can get up and down the pitch, likes to take a player on. If it doesn't work out, sell him back to Rangers in 18 months.

I'd love to see him do well at Everton. I want to see him play against better players, see if he can push on frrom here. He's got the raw materials.
fletch, I agree. Toffees have been after him through a couple of windows. I think he's shrewd business. I was worried that Gerrard was going to lure him to Villa. We've needed a RB as Coleman's understudy and eventual replacement for about 4 years now. Coleman is 57 years old, has a ton of miles on him, and has never fully recovered from his Theismann-like leg break IMO.

Also just signed LB Vitaly Mikolenko from Dynamo Kiev. 22, some CL experience with Dynamo, in the starting XI for the Ukraine side that got to the quarterfinals of Euros. Fee was on the high side at 17M.

Now, selling someone like Digne, at 28, at the top of his value, to cash in before he begins his decline, and replacing him with a promising youngster- that's the kind of business that a club in Everton's weight class should be doing. I also have some issues with Digne. Even before Rafa allegedly wasted his attacking talents by moving to a system where the fullbacks stay home, his form had started to decline. I also don't like that in a squad often lacking in backbone, he hasn't used his stature to lead - he's arguably the player in the sweet spot of talent + accomplishment + seniority, he should be the guy. Maybe it's not fair to fault him for something that's not in his character but he's been a little too anonymous and deferential for my liking.

But the way that Rafa is running him out of town is disgusting. He doesn't deserve the cold shoulder. We're in a spot, because I don't believe in backing the boss less than 100% - if you're going to put the reins in his hand you have to give him the leeway. But we'll have alienated a good player and the locker room, and made the club an even less desirable destination for talent, for a manager who can't hold on much longer IMO. 6 points out of the last 12 games is relegation form. It's not just been the results, the repetition of obvious tactical and roster selection errors has been shocking. Moshiri is all-in on Rafa, though, he forced out the DoF Marcel Brands (who he always overruled anyway) so I don't see how he climbs down from that, but you can't keep getting torn apart like Everton have been. It's a mess.

Incidentally, both Patterson and Mikolenko were Brands guys. Brands comes from Eindhoven, where you have to find undervalued youngsters, get some good years out of them, and sell them on at a profit. Moshiri likes to throw big coin at the likes of Iwobi, meanwhile :oops:
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
This just in: Benitez' comments re: Digne in his press conference, verbatim, just concluded.

https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/everton-rafa-benitez-lucas-digne-22677637

Obviously there remains a lot of talk around Lucas Digne's situation as well, are you getting the feeling now it is inevitable he will leave in this transfer window?

Benitez: I think he was very clear. I want to ask a question to every fan or former player, what will Peter Reid do or say if a player goes and says he doesn't want to be there? That's it, simple.

Are you categorically saying that Lucas doesn't want to be at the football club?

Benitez: I've had a couple of conversations with him, he told me what he thought. So what do you expect the manager to do when he's thinking about leaving?
I will say again, fans and former players, what would Peter Reid say if a player goes to the manager he doesn't want to be here?

Simple.

Just to play devil's advocate then, why was Lucas Digne named on the bench against Brighton?
Benitez: Because as a manager you have a responsibility to try and do what the best is for the club. Sometimes you play for that.

What do you anticipate happening now then? Have you had enquiries for Lucas? We've heard that Chelsea, West Ham, Newcastle and another Premier League club are interested.

What inquiries have there been? Have there been bids at all?


Benitez: I will say to you I'd like to sign Haaland and Mbappe.
I can do enquiries, but I have to commit myself. We need commitment, we don't need enquiries.

So you've had no bids for Lucas as of yet?

Benitez: I'm not in charge of the negotiations.

When someone is asking, they have to commit themselves to say ok I will buy, or I will make an obligation or something.
People can talk and talk. I'm really pleased with Dominic, but if you bring me Mbappe I will be happy too.Can I do it? I can make an enquiry and then you will so 'oh they are interested'. That's it.
https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/everton-january-transfers-digne-breaking-22643242
How disappointed are you that it's come to this kind of situation with him?

Benitez: I'm a professional, I try to manage. Since my first day here, I know what the fans want. When you're not winning, it's more difficult. The reality is that we need players who want to be here for any reason. Talking about the stats, individual stats, when the team finished tenth - it means nothing for me.
What I want is a winning mentality, I want ambition. it will take some time, maybe, but at least we try to do things in the right way.

How do you make sure this doesn't have an impact on the dressing room?

Benitez: Not really, everyone knows each other really well.

Could you maybe explain a little bit about why Lucas Digne wants to leave the club?

Benitez: I have no explanation.

We are professionals, we are paid big money to do our job. If someone is happy or is not happy, it's up to you and is your job.
They pay you big money to perform, you have to perform and be available. You have to put your interests behind the interests of the club. That is my feeling and the feeling of everyone.

Modern football, maybe, the stats and the priorities have changed. People think about themselves ahead of the teams.

So you feel like he's put himself ahead of the team then? That's what you're saying?

Benitez: No what I say is that a team that finished tenth, and someone is worried about the stats, it changes nothing for me like I said before.
I don't want to finish tenth. I would like to be in a much better position now, I'm not stupid, but I don't want to finish tenth.

I want to finish as high as possible and I want to be sure Everton is growing and improving - and we create a winning mentality for the future.
It will take some time, yes, but in the meantime you need players who really want to be here.

Again, I will ask the question - Peter Reid, what will he say if a player doesn't want to be here? Would he be happy with this player, supportive of this player?
The fans will be supportive of this player? It's what we have to consider, what we want to do in the future.

We want to try and grow and improve, or just to manage the egos and then leave the team behind depending on the egos?

When it comes to Lucas, do you see any way back for him at all or is it best for all parties if he leaves this month?

Benitez: That is football, and it's very simple. The 31st of January. If we finish the transfer window and he's still here, we have to start doing what we have to do.
At the moment, we have to deal with the players that want to be here.

I appreciate your honesty in terms of telling us he doesn't want to play for the club anymore.
But how does that go and how does that affect his valuation? Does it reduce your bargaining power?


Benitez: You as a manager try to do the best for your club, sometimes it's against you.
We knew already we were trying to manage the situation, we have interest but nothing concrete. Now we are getting closer to the end of the transfer window and then you have to manage.

What I can't do is bring in players who want to be here and then give priority to players that are not really interested.
You can analyse the reasons why, but it doesn't matter. For me the club is ahead of any player, any manager. We have to do what we have to do.

Do you have a certain valuation on Lucas?

Benitez: The valuation is clear.

We know that Lucas is a good player, I don't have any doubts about that. The question is what the team needs or what the team needed, and then we didn't have that. When the manager is asking for, in a difficult situation when you don't have your strikers or you're not scoring goals, the team has to do something. Every player has to be there for the task.

If you're not thinking about that, the priority is you and not the team. That is the reason why we have to find solutions.
Rafa has been stubborn. He got off to a fast start, but when the wheels fell off, he dug in on bad ideas and when they were shown not to work, he dug in even harder.

On Rondon playing heavy minutes, even though he hadn't played at all in several months and that only in China (under Rafa). There are several academy players ready for first team minutes, they played out of necessity at Chelsea’s and did well, but even today at Hull he stuck with Rondon who was awful.

On persisting with a midfield two, when it has been shown again and again in our awful run (1 W, 3 D, 8 L, plus knocked out of Carabao Cup by QPR) that we're getting overrun in midfield and adding a third body instantly improves us.

Edit: barely escaped from Hull with a win in extra time today. First 20 minutes were horrendous.
 

Rwillh11

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
188
Probably even odds that Duncan Ferguson is the manger against Villa next weekend - hopefully he remains undefeated
 

Rwillh11

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
188
yeah, posted that right before news really started to pick up that he was gone. Given what's out there at the moment, do you think it makes sense to have Dunc as interim manager until the end of the season? The risk is that he really falls on his face and we go down, but obviously he's stepped in and done well before.
 

coremiller

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
5,473
yeah, posted that right before news really started to pick up that he was gone. Given what's out there at the moment, do you think it makes sense to have Dunc as interim manager until the end of the season? The risk is that he really falls on his face and we go down, but obviously he's stepped in and done well before.
Big Sam is available . . .
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
yeah, posted that right before news really started to pick up that he was gone. Given what's out there at the moment, do you think it makes sense to have Dunc as interim manager until the end of the season? The risk is that he really falls on his face and we go down, but obviously he's stepped in and done well before.
He will keep us up. The risk of trying to sign a long term manager now is there aren’t many good ones unattached, and if you bring in a guy on an 18+ month deal and he’s not the guy then you are REALLY screwed. The club urgently needs straightening out and a long term plan after lurching from coach to coach and spending stupid money on different styles of manager. I have no confidence that current leadership can intelligently pick a manager at the moment so let Dunc see us to 40 points and 17th and let’s get the next one right (ha)
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
View: https://twitter.com/everton/status/1482727892673044484?s=21


I take no joy in it, just a grim acknowledgment that the toxin is no longer being pumped into the body. But make no mistake the patient has been on life support for some time.

Five managers, plus two interims with longish runs, in six years, swinging wildly between playing philosophies, and a mismatched bloated roster as a result. Stupid excessive spending on mediocre (at best) talents. Hiring a promising director of football with a reputation for finding undervalued young talent, only for the owner to spend money on shiny object players and managers without or over his input (most egregiously 38M on a panic buy on Iwobi at the close of the window; in 68 PL appearances this attacking winger/10 has 3 goals and 3 assists), thus crippling the club under FFP and leaving us with assets unsalable at any price). maybe due to the overspend on these misfit toys, a chronic lack of squad depth. A board of yes men and flunkies. Persistent failure of the owner to communicate directly with the fans, doing so only by passing messages to his favorite media mouthpiece (he doesn’t even sit for interviews). Undue influence by agents and hangers on, knowing that the owner loves to think that by throwing money at the latest aging big club reject he can compete for Europe. Atrophy of what was once one of the best academies in England, the production potential first teamers slowed to a trickle and many of the Best allowed to leave for minimal return. Persistent underachievement of the players on the pitch, who despite these problems have had enough quality to put together dominant stretches of play for a third of half of a season but an inevitable tendency to drop heads and down tools when adversity hits.

Toxic.

I don’t trust anyone in power to pick a manager and I think a DOF to make that and other decisions towards a long term strategy is imperative. Dunc and Leigton Baines are likely going to get the reins. Let them have it, let them keep us up, 17th is fine. The ultimate disaster would be to go into our fantastic new park- moshiris one huge win- and in the first game with all the fanfare to host Barnsley or Peterborough. No disrespect to those clubs, pound for pound they’re better run.
 

SocrManiac

Tommy Seebach’s mustache
SoSH Member
Apr 15, 2006
5,500
Somers, CT
The NBC guys just had a good chat about who might want to come to Everton. The toxicity you mention is readily apparent from the outside, but how can you know the rot until you’re there?

Why would an up and comer (Graham Potter was mentioned) want to go to Everton and tarnish his reputation?
 

67YAZ

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 1, 2000
5,100
The NBC guys just had a good chat about who might want to come to Everton. The toxicity you mention is readily apparent from the outside, but how can you know the rot until you’re there?

Why would an up and comer (Graham Potter was mentioned) want to go to Everton and tarnish his reputation?
They also cautioned Potter might ruin his reputation but hopping into Goodison right now. Impulsive, overly involved ownership is a bad situation. I can’t really see a path back towards top-4 contention unless Morishi sells or dramatically changes his approach to the club.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
The NBC guys just had a good chat about who might want to come to Everton. The toxicity you mention is readily apparent from the outside, but how can you know the rot until you’re there?

Why would an up and comer (Graham Potter was mentioned) want to go to Everton and tarnish his reputation?
As the guys on one of the Everton pods we’re discussing last night, I’m not even sure you’d want Evertons roster over Brightons. Sounds silly with the likes of DCL and Richy, but when you look at the upside of Brighton’s young talent vs the age of many of ours, the case can be made. Their sex abuser is accused of a more serious offense then ours so there’s that.

Rooney is a name. If it were anyone else who was doing so well with a club docked points for being in administration I’d be all for it but that is back to shiny object territory and there’s too much weird history there. Jose also bring mentionrdand I’m just JFC no. No more big names on the downside of their careers, plus going from Rafa to Jose is like going from Midnight Cowboy to Leaving Las Vegas on the mood-o-meter.
 

coremiller

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
5,473
It's crazy that Everton sold one of their best players because he didn't get along with the manager, and then turned around and fired that manager a week later. Absolutely no vision or plan or strategic thinking.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
It's crazy that Everton sold one of their best players because he didn't get along with the manager, and then turned around and fired that manager a week later. Absolutely no vision or plan or strategic thinking.
Everton that.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
21,616
The 718
I'm seeing a lot of Roberto Martinez rumors.
Me too.

IMO he’s redeemed himself *somewhat* at Belgium, but he had a generational team and still didn’t win anything. More importantly his time at Everton ended poorly, despite his success early in. His teams defended poorly which is the last thing we need atm. Plus it gives the fans a nasty feeling of FM and the board trying to get the band backtogether.