The Mail Bag

November 2007 Archive Want to have your say?

Fairplay

It is great news to see Everton at the top of the fairplay table after so many years being at the wrong end of it. Hopefully Moeysey can use these stats in his advantage when he has to face his ridiculous FA charges.
Ant Sorojorva     Posted 30/11/2007 at 21:44:15   Comments (5)

Positive approach

I've just read the post about Steven Pienaar below. I agree that the bloke has been an absolute revelation and should be signed ASAP. Having read the post it made me realise that Pienaar's success has been in part due to a seachange in Moyes's approach to games.

While he has had a better quality of player to pick from this season, he has moved with the times and, instead of turning exciting creative game-winning players into a dour defense-minded unit as was his wont before, he seems to have gone out to win games in a far more positive and attack-minded fashion.

I know the quality of recent opposition has not been of the standard of Man Utd and Barcelona but this should not be used as a serious criticism right now. Yes, stiffer opposition may be a real acid test of how far the man has moved on but right now, with a full squad to pick from, Moyes has taken the right approach.
Kieran Fitzgerald     Posted 30/11/2007 at 20:50:04   Comments (3)

Steven Pienaar

For those of you who haven't checked the official website, there is a an interview with Moyes about Steven Pienaar. He claims that he is delighted with his form over the past six weeks, however, he will look at his future at the end of the season and there will be no permanant signing in January. What an idiot! Has he not learnt his lesson from the Manuel Fernandes saga. Pienaar has been turining great performances week in week out in the Premier League and he will now be being watched by several other clubs. I think that Moyes may be making a huge mistake.
John Murphy     Posted 30/11/2007 at 18:57:15   Comments (14)

Midfielder in January?

It is obvious that we need to spend millions on a midfielder in January to replace/cover Osman. Now, from the list of the targets we have been rumoured to get, I was wondering what kind of midfielder we needed.

Would we need the pure creative midfielder type (Riquelme, Modric) who does have not much emphasis in defending back but has class creativity...

Or would we need a midfield dynamo player (Appiah, Fernandes), a much more all round player who can defend quite well and attack quite well too, but obviously not as creative as the creative midfielder.

I think the latter one, ideally buy Appiah or Fernandes, because we can dominate the midfield much more whilst having some creative element. Someone like Riquelme or Modric in the team would leave our midfield a bit open while defending, even though our attacking player will be improved.

Its a tough one!
Ben Jones     Posted 30/11/2007 at 16:32:09   Comments (24)

South African squad announced, Pienaar included

South Africa is the first African team to announce their African Federation Cup of Nations (AFCON) squad today, and Pienaar is included. Carlos Parreira excluded the controversial Benni, but included Pienaar.

I was really hoping the coach would not include him, cause we really need him here at the club. I would love to see Pienaar play for the national team, but feel the coach could have left all the tried and tested players! I can understand that he's grooming a young team in preparation for 2010, but seems so unfair on club football.

Why can?t CAF play this tournament every four years or during off season! If all these African players playing in the Premier League represents their country, then I can?t see why Man U cannot win the league again. I really feel that we being robbed!
Ricardo  Humphries     Posted 30/11/2007 at 15:38:33   Comments (11)

Yakubu ? Times podcast

I'm not sure who has listened to this, but in last week's Times podcast with Gabriele Marcotti and Guillem Balague, they were talking about our win over Sunderland. After a brief summary of the match, Guillem Balague states that Yakubu was not one of DM's signings. Has anyone else heard this, and if so, could you enlighten us with the details? Both of the above named journalists are well connected and seem to know what's going on throughout the footballing world.
Matt Geraghty     Posted 30/11/2007 at 12:18:47   Comments (12)

Harry Redknapp

I wonder if this arrest will affect the Pompey team? Some of the better players might be wondering "Am I being investigated" and play crap... I honestly hope so!!! The only problem it could present is that it might galvanise the team in support of Harry...
Dave Trudgeon     Posted 30/11/2007 at 09:49:56   Comments (9)

EvertonTV downloads

I am an EvertonTV subscriber and next week will be heading to Australia for a year travelling. As a result, I want to download some of the videos on EvertonTV and put them on my Ipod classic so I can listen to them anytime.

Downing them is not a problem but I cannot import them to my ipod because they are not the correct format and any format translation software, which works with my camera videos, produces an error saying it will not translate.

I think it is becuase they are license protected but as I have paid to see them and can download them and watch them, why cant I change the format to MPEG 4 so they will play on my ipod?

Does anyone know a way around this problem? Cheers, fellow Toffees.
Gavin Harris     Posted 29/11/2007 at 20:10:57   Comments (12)

Baxter & England

The Under-16s are playing the young jocks tonight and I think Sky Sports are showing it live. If anyone going to watches it, let us know how young Jose Baxter holds up! I know it's still early to take a huge interest in the lad, just look how close Scott Spencer got to the first team before going on trial to Yeovil! But we can still hope!
Chris Canning     Posted 29/11/2007 at 19:17:44   Comments (4)

Are we already through to the next round?

Just saw that Zenit and Nuremberg have drawn 2-2. A quick glance at uefa.com tells that the top 3 teams advance. As it stands therefore, we can finish no worse than 3rd (assuming head-to-head record counts ahead of goal difference). An excuse for a pint? Perhaps.. Does anyone know what advantages come with finishing 1st or 2nd in the group? Could this be the start of a great month?
Lorcan Walsh     Posted 29/11/2007 at 17:55:41   Comments (24)

Recognition at last?

The following is from the BBC Sport website:

"At St Andrews, McLeish will no doubt be earning anything up to four times the amount he was paid by the Scottish Football Association.

But money cannot be the main motivation for an already wealthy man.

It was the chance to pit his wits against his old mentor Sir Alex, Rafa, Arsene, Moyes and the rest that has seen Big Eck pack his bags for the English Premier League. "

I think that's the first time I have ever seen DM mentioned in the same breath as the some of the so-called "Big 4". Even the blessed Beeb are having to acknowledge his success. What next?!
Tom  Edwards     Posted 29/11/2007 at 17:17:27   Comments (8)

The Big 6

This years Title race may look like it's already sown up with Arsenal racing off but who will finish in the top 6? I predict;

Arsenal Man Utd Chelsea Man City Villa /RS Everton/Portsmouth FA Cup winners - Chelsea League Cup - Everton

Man City are doing what Everton and to a degree Spurs did, they are keeping up with the top teams. I hope I'm wrong and we finish in the top 4 but with the massive fixture list coming up and the Nigerian players we will lose in the early part of 2008 I can't see us doing it.
Dave O'Brien     Posted 29/11/2007 at 15:04:38   Comments (9)

Four...

Slightly sick of referring to the Big Four as the Big Four and hearing others call them the Big Four.

They exist but I wish someone would come up with a collective name that was (1) Less complementary to them and (2) Less denegrating to us.

Best I can think of right now is above-the-law-four (due to poll result on referee treatment)... But one of you must have something wittier, catchier, more hard hitting or all three... Ideas anyone?
Tom Brown     Posted 29/11/2007 at 13:11:41   Comments (14)

Portsmouth Performance ? The Big Test

Although I've been pleased with the results since The Derby, I'm still cautious about what real progress has been made by the team. The Uefa Cup and League Cup have been useful in building our confidence but the standard of our opponents has been poor (a good team would have punished our unforced mistakes against Nurnberg for instance) and Sunderland were very poor giving us far too much space to play in. But without doubt Cahill has made a big difference since his return and Pienaar has certainly improved. And a special mention has to be given to Howard who has been top class.

The big test for me though is our 'performance' (not just the result) against Portsmouth. Not a top 4 team but a very good team. I still think our midfield is too lightweight. It has the skill to brush aside the Sunderlands but I still think Gravesen needs match practise for when the going gets tough. But well done to the team and I hope the run continues.
Ged Dwyer     Posted 29/11/2007 at 12:52:29   Comments (9)

Tribute to AJ Clarke

Just heard that Anthony Clarke has passed away. AJ was one of the greatest blues fans out there and part of a great gang of lads. My thoughts go out to Joey, Billy, Cockney Ste and all the other great blues. Best wishes to all Elm House blues and of course AJ's family. Orrys on a match day, the big away games and those famous Scottish pre seasons wont be the same my son. Love you AJ always have always will. Skinny Paul.
Paul Godley     Posted 29/11/2007 at 08:03:23   Comments (5)

Mailbag Clarification

Just a short note for the small group of contributors who are having problems getting their views heard here on ToffeeWeb. I apolgise in advance for clogging up the mailbag with this but I can't think of any other way to reach those who are giving us false names and e.mail addresses. Yes, "Sylvia Lymbery", I'm thinking especially of you.

Submitting your comments under a variety of very creative aliases was fun for a while, no doubt. But we track incoming by IP address and comparing styles soon made it clear to us what you were doing, which is why your last 30 or so contributions have been queued for review rather than posted directly. You are not alone: we also monitor other posters who are unable to meet the minimal conditions for posting here on ToffeeWeb.

You may object to revealing your identity and that's fine. It just means your opinion will not be heard on these pages. If that opinion is worth hearing, we reason that it is also worth standing behind. Which means giving us your full name (no nicknames please) and providing a valid e.mail address. It's really not that much to ask. Thanks!
Michael Kenrick     Posted 29/11/2007 at 03:37:52   Comments (18)

Fox Soccer Channel, USA

Everton got a lot of coverage on Fox Soccer Channel last night. The two English presenters (one a Chelsea fan) commenting that Tim Cahill is the best late arriver in the box in the world. Mikel Arteta got several mentions including walking straight into the England team and being an awesome gifted player. Moyes got the plaudits for creating a great team.

Plus goals of the week awarded to Tim Cahill and Pienaar. In typical American fashion, they have multiple goals of the week..... Pity the BBC doesn't give us credit like that...
Dan Parker     Posted 28/11/2007 at 16:55:12   Comments (11)

Diabolical!

Just been reading the BBC about the possible candidates for the new Jockland boss and I'm enraged that they don't even consider Moyes for the job. Don't get me wrong: I don't want him to go but to not even consider one of the best young managers in the Prem not forgetting hes a Jock as well is an insult.

It prob means one of two things: they don't think he would leave Everton anyway so didn't even bother listing him. Or yet again it's another media snub for anything to do with Everton.
Dan Johnson     Posted 28/11/2007 at 14:53:58   Comments (12)

Phil Neville!

I'm absolutely made up! Moyes has realised something that I wasn't sure he knew.

I'd always thought that he classed Phil as a midfielder and to be honest it worried me but now we have proof that he wants him at RB ? a quote from the man himself

"Look at Phil Neville. He has been a terrific captain since he has been here but he has got Tony Hibbert ? who did really well at Chelsea before the break ? breathing down his neck. Phil Jagielka can play there too." That's great news... haha!
Dave  Trudgeon     Posted 28/11/2007 at 13:57:06   Comments (10)

The Reserves

Should Experienced Players Play in the Reserves anymore?

Years ago, if you didnt play in the first team you played for the reserves, and both teams used to play on a Saturday. I remember as a kid going to a few of the games with my dad; we used to scarper quick at the final whistle to avoid the crowd from the dark side of the park. In those days you had a small first-team squad of about 15 as well. Nowadays, reserve teams are usually full of youngsters or the odd injured player on his way back.

Tonight's squad for Wigan is Everton: Ruddy, Densmore, Boyle, Irving, Rodwell, Harpur, Downes, Vidarsson, Jutkiewicz, Vaughan, Van der Meyde, Agard, Stubhaug, McCarten, O'Kane, Morrison.

I know we have a lot of games coming up but only Vaughan is a player currently capable of a first-team game in that squad. I presume VDM is playing out time until he leaves. Tommy Gravesen has hardly played at all since he come here, do you not think he should be getting at least 45 minutes in this game? Jagielka too has hadn't much game time lately nor has Wessels.

Experienced players also help youngsters develop also. I can remember going to Widnes and seeing us play with Rooney and the Dunc upfront with Carsley and Osman in midfield.

Anyway just a thought and just wondering peoples opinion of who should be getting a run out in such a game.
James  Elworthy     Posted 28/11/2007 at 13:11:25   Comments (7)

Better than Brasil!

Finding something to moan about has been difficult for even the Club`s harshest critics these last few days. Sure, there was a mild outbreak of `Kirkby is Crap` when re-worked pictures of the new stadium were published but , all in all, it`s hard to remember a time when so many Evertonians seemed so satisfied with their lot.

When you see the turmoil in which so many clubs exist, it makes you glad that you made the right choice all those years ago. Chairmen sacking managers, managers falling out with owners, directors suing other directors, and Fergie slagging everybody off may make good copy for the red tops but it hardly does much for the game.

How fortunate we are to have a stable Board, a Chairman who is really one of us, and a manager who promises to become the best in the land. Add to that a team who are really going places and it really makes you glad you weren`t born in Brasil!
Sebastian  St Clare     Posted 28/11/2007 at 13:02:07   Comments (13)

Goal Celebration

After scoring recently, both Vaughan and AJ have made an 'A' symbol with their hands. I saw Clinton Morrison do the same thing against Alan Irvine's Preston yesterday. I wondered if anyone could shed some light on what it means cos I haven't got a clue. Ta in advance.
Paddy Ryan     Posted 28/11/2007 at 12:45:53   Comments (7)

Arteta and Cahill are they legends

Debate on ToffeeWeb lately has been mind numbingly boring, so here's one to get the blood boiling.

In ten years time will we talk about Arteta and Cahill as we talk about Alan Ball, Sheedy, Sharpe and Labone? Or will we talk about these players as we talk (contentiously) about Latchford, Kanchelskis and McKenzie, great players, awesome individualists but not in a great team or great team players.

Arteta in my mind is already one of the Everton legends; Cahill, well, this season he's on fire and playing better I bet than even he thought he could play ? as well as his manager and I suppose most of the supporters.
Peter  Pridgeon     Posted 28/11/2007 at 09:46:11   Comments (3)

ToffeeWeb Site Access

Hi, Why is it when i click on to my favourites, then ToffeeWeb, I get the page, Easy CGI the future of ToffeeWeb? Then when I go to Google, the site is up and running?

Thanks everyone for a great Everton site.
Colin Malone     Posted 28/11/2007 at 09:22:30   Comments (2)

Manuel Fernandes

Looks like Manny is struggling to adapt to life in La Liga, with injury and loss of form. Therefore I think Everton should try and buy this player on the cheap (i.e. £12M max), he's young, class and made for Everton!

Who knows what really went on back in August, reading between the lines I took it as more evertons failure to agree a deal with Benfica/MSI as to why it fell through.

We need a class creative ball playing midfielder, this for me is the only big missing peice of the jigsaw from having a serious CL competing team, with manny in from the start I rekon we'd be in the top 4 now. Specifiically I'm thinking of defeats at Newcastle and Villa were we painfully lacked a playmaker in the centre of the park.

Manny, come home lad!
Brian Taylor     Posted 27/11/2007 at 19:53:55   Comments (26)

From the horse's mouth

Talking to Evertonian mates, and even some well-wishers at this end of the East Lancs Road, we all wish we'd saved four goals for the next few fixtures. But what the hell, take it when you can get it.

I trust the opinions of the footballers more than the fans - and much more than the media - and what a joy to read AJ and Capt Phil having fun at each others expense, and San Mikel saying what we all know as fans, but from someone who really knows what he's talking about.

If you haven't followed the links from the home page, do it now.
Keith Glazzard     Posted 27/11/2007 at 19:31:55   Comments (2)

Is Pienaar really good?

I've just read this article on ICLiverpool.co.uk about Saturday's game by Nigel Martyn. "Still, though, it needs a magnificent effort to score seven times in a Premier League fixture and, don?t forget, there were some terrific pieces of skill to open Sunderland up, and I?d have to pick out Steven Pienaar?s effort as the best of the bunch.

Both he and Nuno Valente showed terrific desire to get in to the areas which made things impossible for Sunderland to deal with and that capped a great individual display. He, like the rest of the team, will now head to Portsmouth brimming with confidence"
Elton Willenburgh     Posted 27/11/2007 at 19:12:47   Comments (20)

Osman's Goal

Having watched Osman's goal can't help but wonder why a bigger fuss wasn't created over it. He ran from the half way line, beat a few players and tucked it away brilliantly. Surely a goal of the month contender? If Lampard / Gerrard / Rooney / Ronaldo did it would the reaction have been the same?
Declan Brown     Posted 27/11/2007 at 14:13:45   Comments (10)

Scotland Job!

Jimmy Armfield to name just one actually mentions David Moyes name as a possible ENGLAND manager. DM himself has laughed off the posability. However should we be worried about the possbility of the Scotland job becoming available? Walter Smith and Alex McCliesh obviously rate club management more highly and hopefully Moyes will feel the same but I would be suprised if he isn't among the favourites!
Craig Taylor     Posted 27/11/2007 at 11:55:21   Comments (10)

Moyes to be charged over Clattenburg remarks

1 month and nine days since openly criticising Mr Clotenbburg.. it would appear the FA finally taken notice.. Conveniently , the FA official who was present during DM',s post match conversation with the Referee has lost lost his memory and apparently "cant recall exactly what was said". This of course has nothing to do with SAF also being charged over his remarks concerning the same hapless official..???
Terry Maddock     Posted 27/11/2007 at 10:14:32   Comments (18)

Make or Break!

Just looking at the fixtures for December, and we have 9 games at an average of 1 nearly every 3 days! This is the time that the depth of our squad is going to be needed most. The month of December is potentially the biggest of our recent era, with a League Cup QF against West Ham, which if we win, then I fancy our chances to be honest.

Also 2 Uefa Cup games which are not greatly important as we seem to have already qualified, but it would still be nice to finish top of the group with good performances maintaining the current flow and confidence.

And then there's the 6 league games.........If we can at least win 4 of these, I believe we will be very nicely placed going into the new year, where together with a couple of new additions (Alan Hutton, and an enforcing CM on my wish list, with maybe CB to cover), we can build on a GREAT half of a season and really push on for some much needed silverware, and qualification for Europe through the league. COYB, this really is a big month, where the quality we have in numbers maybe called up on.
Nicko Coyne     Posted 26/11/2007 at 21:59:00   Comments (7)

Where are they now (in the table!), eh?

Alan Smith [ha ha], Geremi, Jason Koumas, Mark Viduka, Kieron Richardson, Craig Bellamy and no doubt others too numerous to mention.

.These are just a few of the many names some fans were screaming at our manager for not signing in the summer. Many have signed for the (un)mighty Toon and others struggling to maintain their own fans' expectations.

I would like to hear from fellow Toffees on how they think David Moyes's buys have turned out now we are a third of the way through the season, and if any of the names linked with us would REALLY have improved us as a team.
Allan Reddish     Posted 26/11/2007 at 21:40:57   Comments (11)

European Qualification

I think this is the toughest season for a long time in terms of quality opposition. The 'big three' and the RS are still way out in front due to their resourses and I imagine will take the top four slots at the end of the season. The Uefa Cup places will be much tougher this year with Man City, Blackburn, Villa and Pompey all playing consistantly well.

Add to that West Ham (with cash to burn and an improving injury list) Newcastle (surely the players & managers they have got they can't screw up forever) and Spurs (ditto) then if we take a Uefa Cup slot I think it 's a much greater achievement than last year. I doubt last year's squad would finish in the top eight this season such is the level of the competition...
John Pickles     Posted 26/11/2007 at 21:20:42   Comments (4)

Yak and Schillo is really showing class

Nice to see Yak doing well for us, I've liked him since he arrived in England. The bad news for us is that Nigeria want to recall him to their national setup. I really can't see us doing ok without a big player like him in front!

Schillo (Pienaar's nickname) is really starting to show what a classy midfielder he is. Passing, skill and vision in up there with the best. I think I've seen this player at his best at Ajax, why am I starting to feel i'm wrong feeling like that. I really think Pienaar's best is still to come and its most certainly coming in one of our blue shirts!! He is really adapting to live in Engish football very well.
Ricardo Humphries     Posted 26/11/2007 at 20:33:15   Comments (6)

Preston our feeder club now?

A lot's been said over the past few years about feeder clubs, are they legal? Who?s feeder to whom, people even go as far to say we're a feeder club to Man Utd.

Now as far as I?m concerned, Everton have always had a pretty close relationship with Preston ever since we signed Moysey up (friendlies ever year and how Nugent was always favourite to join us) but reading the local paper here today, really made me wonder if it's officially happened now

Personally, I think it would be a great move for us, if players like Jose, Jack and Vidarsson can get first team football. Anyone else got any pro/con opinions on the matter?
Chris Cook     Posted 26/11/2007 at 18:06:39   Comments (2)

Two Questions

I was having a discussion the other day concerning Arteta's constant (and slightly bewildering) ommission from the Spanish national team. One of the reasons for this must surely be that he is playing for a non-CL club outside of his home country. If this really was a factor then it stands to reason that he would have to move in order to fall into contention... Yet he does seem perfectly happy here!

Has anyone ever seen any quotes by him regarding the national team and his desire to play in it? I suppose him being a Basque might mean that the Spanish national team is of little interest to him (Although there obviously are alot of Basques that proudly represent Spain..)?
Paul Hetherington     Posted 26/11/2007 at 17:04:32   Comments (5)

So that's the end of that

With the January transfer window on the horizon, there is one possible deal talked about all too often on this site, that it seems we can finally put to bed. The news wires over here are reporting that Villarreal have agreed a deal to sell Riquelme to Boca Juniors back in his native Argentina.

On a separate note every Evertonian in Australia will be cheering Tim Cahill on twice as hard on Thursday against Zenit. For those who don't know, their coach, ex-Dutch national boss Dick Advocaat signed a deal to coach the Socceroos, but when Zenit won the Russian title and qualfied for the ECL, he reneged on the deal! It would be some sort of justice then if our Blue Australian star smacked in a hat-trick against the Russians.

And finally what a joy it was to watch Everton dismantle the Black Cats on Saturday. Four beautifully crafted goals and three via route one, but a route one created by the enormous and unrelenting pressure we put on the Sunderland defence. I think there is a difference between route one taking advantage of a defence in disarray and hoof-ball. So we scored 7, Pompey bagged 7 against Reading... could be a goal fest on Sunday!
Richard Ewart     Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:47:31   Comments (2)

Everton enjoying their football

The following video is scary. It is scary how much the football has improved. I remember watching the Blackburn game earlier this season and all we could do was hoof it to Mcfadden and Johnson.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=av8T89vcA_Y

I'm not getting carried away but It is an improvement and I'm actually starting to enjoy going the match again. Lovely clip anyway and worth a watch. Even Neville's getting a few tricks in.
Connor   Rohrer     Posted 26/11/2007 at 14:37:28   Comments (1)

Any players coming through??

Around this time every year a player breaks into the first team: Rooney, Vaughan, Anichebe, does anyone know if there are any players who could break into the first team this year?

We know of Vidarsson and Boyle, but what of the development of other players... Agard maybe? Could it be that the strengh of our first team will put back the development of the promising youngsters by a year? Maybe a third round FA cup draw against a minnow might allow a little first team action. To me we seem to have seen the best of what we have for the time being.
Chris Keightley     Posted 26/11/2007 at 13:55:10   Comments (26)

Consistency

To my mind the most positive thing about Saturday's result is that it continues a fantastic run in three competitions. We've won 9 of our last 12 games, got a creditable draw at Chelsea and lost (undeservedly) by the odd goal to Liverpool & Newcastle. In fact we've only lost 5 in total so far and only 1 of those was by more than 1 goal. No-one has outplayed us.

Cahill coming back has obviously made a difference but we have far more quality in midfield in general now. I won't get over-excited by Saturday's result in its own right but if we continue to be consistent and add a couple of players in January I think this could be our most succesful season in a long while.
Steve Jones     Posted 26/11/2007 at 13:23:58   Comments (7)

Galvanised

Sure pleanty of people aware of it, but since the derby we haven't looked back, it may just be that Clottenburg's performance has totally galvanised the team. The ridiculous comments from Benitez following that game now bring a wry smile as I contemplate his imminent departure, adios.
Marcus Dawson     Posted 26/11/2007 at 12:03:46   Comments (2)

Nuno Valente

I'm not Nuno's biggest fan to be honest. I think he lacks pace and he's injury-prone. In the last few games though, other than a few mis-timed tackles in dangerous positions, he has been excellent in my opinion.

Baines is back fit again and overall is a far better option at left back but looking at our current form with Valente in the team do you think baines should have to wait to get back into the team or should he automatically replace Valente?

Looking at our next game against Portsmouth I have mixed feelings: Valente could be exposed by Portsmouth's pace but Baines could get outdone in the air. I feel as though at the moment that will be the only position Moyes isn't sure of for the next game.
Dave Trudgeon     Posted 26/11/2007 at 11:19:21   Comments (14)

Credit where it's due

Just a quick one to say out of all the great performances on saturday it was hard to ignore Phil Neville. There is not many reports which have highlighted his display. Although not spectacular it outshone many of his recent peformances. He only lost the ball 2 or 3 times (a fraction of his usual play), he looked solid at the back and most importantly he made some decisive passes.

Overall I was most pleased with our captain and the confidence he must have got from that peformance. WIth all our players seemingly fit, i just hope Moyes doesnt go crazy and bring Hibbo back in. Although I dont hate him he just doesn't seem good enough..

On another note, has anyone else noticed that Joleon doesn't seem to have the greatest confidence at the moment? His technique seems based upon 'O shit, O shi, don't mess up, don't mess up' and it comes across a bit panicky. That said, he still had a decent enough game against a poor side and yet again would go towards improving his confidence after that England game..
Mike Cow     Posted 26/11/2007 at 10:24:37   Comments (5)

Sign up Pienaar NOW!

We have him signed up on a season loan (almost try before you buy). I think he has done more than enough to justify making him a permanent signing in January. He's a quality skillful player can play in a few different positions and would be a great addition to the squad. I just hope we don't have another Fernandes situation where we let his loan end and then delay signing him over the summer, allowing someone else to nip in.

My mate is a pompey fan and Harry Redknap is apparently dead keen to sign him.
Dan Johnson     Posted 26/11/2007 at 09:54:24   Comments (9)

The 'Impossible' Dream

It was wonderful to see an Everton side pass and move, attack with confidence and enthusiasm, slamming in seven goals!

In the past two weeks we've seen a gritty backs-to-the-wall performance at Chelsea, followed by Saturday's demolition. Never mind the fact that Sunderland were poor, we absolutely buried them in a manner which surprised many people, given the many texts I've had since.

It is perfectly possible to play it tight against stronger sides, while letting your team cut loose against the minnows. Despite many people claiming this is 'impossible', full credit to Moyes for treating us to a brilliant display on Saturday.

We're on a great run at the moment. We can carry it on by mixing our well-known hard work and spirit with the skill and pace we displayed on Saturday. Moyes has organised them well, the players have the ability, outside the top three I maintain this is an ordinary league.

Please carry on letting them play and watch us enjoying our climb up the table (and even the Carling Cup?!)!
Paul Tran     Posted 26/11/2007 at 09:42:23   Comments (1)

Tough Schedule Coming Up....

Just looking at the schedule for December, I counted 10 matches in 32 days starting from December 1st to January 1st. 6 away games and 4 home games, 2 Uefa Cup games ? 1 home and 1 away, 2 back-to-back away games at West Ham, 1 away game at ManU and 1 home game to Arsenal. Doesn?t get much tougher than this !

Immediately after this period, we will be losing maybe 4 African stars from January 10 (for the African Nations Cup) for about 1 month. Do we have the depth in squad, especially the mid-field and defence to tide over this period ?

Of course, Moyes would be more than aware of the challenge and surely, he would have planned out his strategies. But, it got me speculating on the possibilities for back-ups to cover injuries, player fatigue, etc.

We have plenty of options in the striking department, so that is not a point of worry. The mid-field is thin ? our present first-choice 5-man midfield has hardly any backup (Pienaar, Carsley, Cahill, Osman, Arteta) ? only Gravesen and the dreadful Neville & Jagielka in the holding positions. Time to give the likes of AvDM, Anderson, maybe even Vidarsson/Kissock a chance or two? Maybe, McFadden will be called in to play at left wing at some point of time. Also, since Valente is playing so well at left-back, Moyes may think about pushing Baines to left midfield ?

[Feeling slightly better, already?.]

The defence looks settled, but it takes only a couple of injuries to show up the bare cupboard. But, here are the defensive combinations:

Neville & Hibbert for right-back. Yobo, Stubbs, Lescott & Jagielka for the 2 centre-back positions. Baines and Valente for left-back.

[Feeling much better now?]

Come on, December, we are ready!!
Ajay Gopal     Posted 26/11/2007 at 08:30:52   Comments (10)

Alan Irvine

Could it really be coincidence that the game after Irvine leaves, we play stylish football, go for goal and smash them in! Don't get me wrong ? I think Alan's a great coach and wish him luck in management, but maybe he was the man that was influencing the defensive maybe even (though I hate the term) hoofball play that many blues have been complaining about. I was just wondering if anyone else thinks Alan going could turn out to be a good thing after all, Also any news about who's replacing him.

ps: Hope Dave Hickson gets better in time to cheer us on in our next match; great player though I never got to see him, and he seemed a great person when I went on a Goodison tour.
Rob Jones     Posted 25/11/2007 at 22:32:39   Comments (30)

Club v Country

There's an interesting trend in English culture that being English doesn't mean to people what it used to. I'd like to make it clear I'm certainly not one of those people and love both club and country as most people do, however, in pure football terms, Everton come first.

There are two points I'd like to make. The first is that this could perhaps go someway to explain why playing for your country doesn't mean as much as it used to. Don't get me wrong, if I was on that pitch, I'd be wearing my heart on my sleeve but everyone's not like that anymore.

The second point I'd like to make is an analogy to the lack of support given to the British army abroad which the tabloids seem to pay a lot of attention to recently. Again, I'm proud of what our troops do abroad so I'm definitely in that boat.

Perhaps there really isn't anything wrong with English football, it's just our culture is changing so much that it seems less important.

Ninety years ago people were jumping at the chance to fight for their country and 'see the world'. There weren't really any other options to reach beyond your village/town and it looked like an appealing venture. If they had the media coverage and chances we have today, that clearly wouldn't have been the case. There are so many opportunities out there now that perhaps football just isn't a priority for kids.

I'm sure there are many more reasons but this could be just one factor? As long as Everton continue to mean to future generations what it means to us today, that's all that matters. And the boys yesterday went someway to building towards that!
Dan Parker     Posted 25/11/2007 at 19:36:32   Comments (10)

Osman finally finding his place

Since the 04-05 season, I have not been the biggest fan of Leon Osman. At times since that season we came 4th, he has been frustrating, lightweight and innefective. Almost to the point of becoming a fans' boo-boy. And to be honest there was a part of me that agreed with the boo-boys. He wasn't in the team on merit and his performances where genrally not good enough.

But now I really do think he is finding his place in the team. He is natrually a central attacking midfielder, not a winger. He's never had the pace or strength to play outwide and this contributed alot to his run of bad form. But centrally behind Cahill and in-front of Carsley he has really shone. He wasn't as flashy as Pienaar or Arteta yesterday but he dictated a lot of what we did: his simple but effective passing, energy and quick feet. I just really think he deserves a mention.

I know a lot of people would disagree with me but in terms of technical ability and touch I would say Osman is one of the best Englishman out there. There actually aren't many out there. People talk about Lampard and Gerrard but I would call them more box-to-box instead of actual techincal ball players. He's definitely a more gifted player than Shaun Wright-Phillips and Aaron Lennon who mostly depend on pace to get past their man instead of actual football ability.

But thats the English game for you. Physical attributes over techical ability. Osman will never make the England national team because of these reasons but that is another subject. I really hope Osman keeps this form up because he is a good player and its always nice to see players coming through the academy.
Connor  Rohrer     Posted 25/11/2007 at 17:29:01   Comments (22)

Thinking out loud...

With all the sqabbling with Waldorf and Statler and Benitez, the cost of the Liverpool stadium going up daily, and with us moving out of the city, which most Evertonians don't want... Could a shared stadium be back on the agenda?

Call me paranoid but i think their has been a hidden agenda from day one. If someone asked me twelve months ago, would I go for a shared stadium, it would have been a no no. If asked now, it would be a case of staying in the city or go to Kirkby, I would stay in the city. We know that there would be a massive grant from the council or Europe if the shared stadium was to go ahead.

So if it did go ahead, we'd be staying in the city and the Spanish waiter would get the money he is asking for for players. Just thinking out loud...
Colin Malone     Posted 25/11/2007 at 09:46:44   Comments (35)

MOTD

First of all may I add my congratulations to the boys for a job well done. Mikel's performance was sublime.

I sat up last night to watch the coverage on Match of the Day and was happy to see us on second, granted Bolton's result over Man Utd probably deserved top billing. Now, I'm not one of these that subscribes to the conspiracy theory of BBC bias toward Liverpool FC (excepting the fact that both first choice pundits always want to turn the subject to that of the red half), but what do we have to do to get more airtime than our neighbours?

I checked it out and yes the difference was small, but given the torpid nature of Liverpool's brand of football, what do we have to do? It's our biggest win for I think 16 years, but events at St James' Park somehow warranted more coverage and discussion. Do we need an alien mothership to land on the centre circle at half time or something? Is a 7-1 thrashing with the best performance this year by any Spanish player in the league simply not good enough?

Sometimes you really have to wonder...
Mark Wynne     Posted 25/11/2007 at 07:45:46   Comments (16)

Sir Alex on Clattenberg

Moyesy and Sir Alex Ferguson are becoming even closer friends after SAF's comments about being sent off by that RS ref: "Some referees don't like the truth. I just told him how bad I thought he was and he didn't like that."
Dave Keighton     Posted 25/11/2007 at 02:18:58   Comments (6)

Everton songs

ECSTATIC after the game. Living in Portugal so couldn't watch the game but just seen goals. Awesome! The mood I'm in means i want to listen to some Everton tunes, All Together Now, etc. Anyone know how I can get them ASAP?
Matty Dunn     Posted 24/11/2007 at 23:19:15   Comments (6)

Dave Hickson rushed to hospital

Sorry to put a downer on what has otherwise been an excellent day for all Evertonians around the world but there is worrying news that Dave Hickson has been rushed to hospital.

I saw an ambulance today outside the players entrance to Goodison and it was quite a crowd gathering as Bill Kenwright had run outside. He climbed into the ambulance too and naturally I was concerned it may have been a relative. However later on Radio City 96.7 Bill came on the air to say it Hickson who had taken a turn for a worse and was rushed to hospital. He said he was fighting for his life according to the hospital staff but it was too soon to know what is going to happen.

I just hope all Evertonians out there pray for the great man and footballer and have him in our thoughts.
Harry  Stewart     Posted 24/11/2007 at 18:54:03   Comments (21)

Thank you, God!

I've waited years for my two young sons to "both" be of an age where they could sit through a full game and actually follow it and enjoy what their dad has enjoyed for more years than I'm going to admit to! They're ten and seven. The game I chose as their first ever? Todays against Sunderland!

I couldn't believe it. My life for those 90 minutes was just about as good as it gets... watching the two "little people" who mean most to me in the world jumping up and down in each others arms with genuine and absolute joy as the team who mean almost as much to me as my sons, played some mouth-watering sublime football.

On the radio driving back from the game the announcer said tonight's Lottery's a "seven" million-pound rollover....I wonder !!!!!!
Brian Williams     Posted 24/11/2007 at 17:57:21   Comments (17)

Assists... and my fave goal

I'm doing the stats update and noticed something amazing: in a seven-goal romp that was inspired in large part by the return of the mercurial Mikel Arteta, he was the last provider (and therefore credited with an 'assist') on not one single goal of those seven!!!

And guess who gets the credit for setting up two of the seven? None other than the much-maligned Phil Neville, who played ana absolutely critical role in that second goal ? which I think has to be my favourite.

Excellent touch, style, tricks and feints from Arteta, finished by an exquiste nonchalant flick in to Neville, who had run in from deep and palyed an uneilevable ball right on to Cahill's toe. Timmy, facing the wrong way, under pressure, cotrols it with a beautiful first touch, and shows superb techique to power the ball fiercely into the net. Just a top-class goal that set us up for a tremendous performance and a fabulous victory.
Michael Kenrick     Posted 24/11/2007 at 17:39:31   Comments (16)

Everton 7 - 1 Sunderland

For quite a long time now Michael has complained that a David Moyes team has never thrashed an opposing side.

Was it four or five goals you wanted Michael? I'm not gloating, Michael was quite correct, it was about time we stuffed someone.

Great result and with a fully fit squad it now looks like Everton are firing on all cylinders and doing the impossible, competitivly competing in both the Premiership and Europe.

Great results, improved football, is this what Moyes has been building to over the last five years, have we finally reached that next level?
Dutch Schaffaer     Posted 24/11/2007 at 16:39:21   Comments (51)

Game On Net

Lads, I have been ragged into work today so my cousin has copped for my ticket, but I always read about people streaming the game on net. Could anyone suggest a site I can stream the game from, I'm desperate to watch it, I hate missing games & I reckon it could be a good performance today.

Any suggestions would be appreciated lads & lasses
John Lloyd     Posted 24/11/2007 at 08:37:15   Comments (11)

Greetings from Germany!

Great time, great fans. You are welcome to Nürnberg every time. We stay to our team, as good as in bad times... Clubfreunde Puschendorf/Kirchfembach (official fan club).
Christian Seiler     Posted 24/11/2007 at 04:33:26   Comments (9)

City's huge loss in revenue if EFC move to Kirkby

As a North Wales commuter to GP since 1958, I have noted with dismay the way the Traffic Wardens descend on the areas [on the river side] of Walton Road every time there is a home match . Walking back to my regular spot I have seen literally thousands of parking tickets stuck on windscreens over the years.

This seems to have escalated over the last couple of seasons to near epidemic proportions.Why else would you see so many Wardens out in an otherwise quiet backwater of the City at the oddest times , 3-5 every other Saturday and Wednesday and now [because we are in Europe] Thursday evenings about 8-ish .

Has no one given a thought to the loss of revenue this would cause for LCC and the potential loss of valuable jobs in the area to say nothing of the share values of Doc Martens!

Seriously though the attitude of the city in making near derelict areas a revenue source instead of encouraging sensible parking astounds me , I hope that when when eventually find our new home , the parking facilities reflect consumer choice . It's all very well saying " use the park and ride" but realistically , people will still use a car while there is still fuel available , even when it £3 a litre , which will probably be the price by we eventually move . Although I expect there will be some kind of deal to encourage us to do a "bit of a shop " at Tesco and thereby get a 2p a litre discount at their pumps !
Graham Weigh     Posted 24/11/2007 at 04:26:08   Comments (3)

Full Strength

Looking ahead to tomorrow's encounter with Sunderland, the word is that David Moyes has a full compliment of player's to choose from. Moyes indicates that this is probably the first time in his tenure that he can select from a fully fit squad as the niggling injuries to Arteta, Baines and Stubbs have receded.

The million-dollar mouth-watering question will be, given such availability, the fact that we are at home against a newly promoted side, and Moyes will be flying solo after the departure of Alan Irvine, who will he select and does this indicate who he see's as his best starting XI?

Formations apart, there is no mid-week game to worry about, will he stick with the 4-5-1 or revert to a more natural 4-4-2? For fantasy football purposes I would go with: Howard; Neville, Baines, Yobo, Lescott; Carsley, Cahill, Arteta, Gravesen; Johnson and Vaughan.
Peter Laing     Posted 23/11/2007 at 16:02:48   Comments (14)

It's what's on the inside that counts..

OK, so a lot has been said and will continue to be said about the stadium debacle but one thing strikes me about this that I've not read or heard anyone mention.

We've been continually shown images of a new ground which we all think looks bad/plastic/too close to Tesco's etc, but there's been little or no mention of the actual interior of the stadium.

Now I don't know about you but I've seen Wembley from the outside and it looks shite - the area around the ground is pretty crappy, but inside it's great. The views of the inside of our proposed ground look very similar to Goodison from the limited versions I've seen which must surely satiate some people?

I'm sure this will provoke the standard vitriol from many, but I for one am more bothered about what goes on inside the ground, rather than what happens outside it. If we build a 60,000 seater stadium in Kirkby, which has anything approaching that amount of bums on seats come match days, then will anyone really care, or even notice that it's in Kirkby and not bang in the middle of Liverpool?!

Whenever I go to football matches, no matter where they are, north, south, east or west, I don't get any sense of where I actually am once the game starts ? my mind is fully focussed on the game in front of me, in the same way it is for everyone in the ground. On that basis I don't give much for all this 'keep Everton in our City' stuff (thats not a dig at the KEIOC boys, I just nicked their slogan) because it actually doesn't really matter once the ball is kicked.

As long as it's big, modern, even intimidating; which it should be given our usually vociferous supprt, on the inside then it just doesn't matter.

A big new ground for a team that's on the up currently, to me can only be a good thing ? I would prefer it not to be in Kirkby, I would prefer us to stay at Goodison if I'm honest, but being that I am honest regarding the way I feel about this matter, I just want to watch my team play somewhere fitting of the modern age. If that has to be Kirkby, then so what? Make it big, make it modern, make it noisy, make it passionate ? if that's what we want, that's what we'll get.
Allan Hobbs     Posted 23/11/2007 at 15:54:41   Comments (12)

Ticket Beef

I want to air my personal grivance at the ticket arrangements for away games (season ticket plus 6 away game stubs from last year.) I am aware that it is done to make sure real fans get tickets to away games but where does that leave people like me? I only arrived in the UK in April and I live in London. The only hope I have is to sit in the crowd and pretend to be a neutral.

ps: I would like to hear about other options if anyone has any suggestions especially for the League Cup game with West Ham.
Alex Kakafikas     Posted 23/11/2007 at 11:08:25   Comments (3)

Bilic Anyone?

Personally, I've been quite impressed with Slaven Bilic's contribution throughout the Euro qualifiers. Some of his tactical switches have been immense and obviously out-smarted the impotent McClaren (although I'm not too sure how hard that actually is). If/when Moyes leaves ? God forbid in my eyes ? wouldn't our old ex Slaven Bilic fit the bill as Everton boss? He surely still owes us something after his spell here ? doesn't he???
Harvey Shearer     Posted 22/11/2007 at 13:26:23   Comments (25)

Injury latest?

Anyone any idea if we've Baines and Arteta back at our disposal for Saturday's game against Sunderland? I hope so... I've watched Sunderland a few times recently and they seem a lot more organsied than they did at the beginning of the season.
Sean Dylan     Posted 22/11/2007 at 12:32:45   Comments (20)

Expectation

I?d be interested to know, based on current form, what your current expectations are for Everton this season, how they compare to your anticipation at the start of the season and what you?d be happy with.

For me a good final position in the Premier League is by far the most important. At the start of the season, with some good signings strengthening our squad that finished 6th last year, I thought we?d again finish sixth behind Spurs and the top four. Currently with Man City, Portsmouth, Blackburn and Villa all starting stronger than us, and the interruption of the African Nations Cup, I can see us finishing anywhere from 5th to 10th.

I reckon we?re too good for West Ham and Newcastle but with Ramos in charge I can see Spurs clawing 9 points back on us. However, I?d probably be disappointed if we finished outside the top 6 ? after all this squad is far better than previous ones that finished 4th and 7th and 6th, and other than Man City and Portsmouth I can?t see that any other sides squad has improved as much as us.

As usual, largely due to our recent history, at the start of the season I expected nothing from the domestic cups this year. However, West Ham in the quarters was an excellent draw and I expect us to make the semis in the Carling Cup, and given the sides remaining in the draw I?d be happy with that and not expect us to advance to the final.

As for the Uefa Cup, based on the likes of Spurs, Middlesborough?s and Bolton?s current excellent form I had great expectations of getting to the quarters at the start of the year. However I think we?re slightly unfortunate that the quality of sides in the draw this year are much improved! I expect us to get at least a point against Zenit and qualify for the knockout stages, but I?ve got a horrible feeling that our low ranking will pair us with Bayern Munich, Villarreal or a strong Champions League loser in the next round ? and I don?t expect us to progress. If the draw goes down that route I wouldn?t be despondent with not making the last sixteen.

So I guess my expectations at the start of the year were just a little higher than they are now, but I?m not unhappy with our progress.
Andy Davies     Posted 22/11/2007 at 11:23:57   Comments (15)

75,000

Sorry for another ground move post. front page of the Post todays sees Wyness coming out with the shout of us possibly making our ground capacity to 75,000 in the fututre. I would ask "Is he having a laugh?" but this is bullshit and the comment back from Bestway was that he is moving the goalposts. Quite clearly this bugger has no intentions of hearing anyone else's opinions, ideas or offers on this groundshare, it's full steam ahead for Kirkby.

We are all for ambition but get real, even in the 60s when we had a large Irish fanbase and were as big as anyone we actually averaged over 50,000 one season ? where is there a need for 75,000? Day after day this man proves to me that he does not give two figs about our history or the people of the so-called People's Club.

We average 34,000 with our limited corporate facilities empty for nearly every game so how can we even dream of finding another 40,000 when we leave the thriving city to the bordering farmland town? Be ambitous but be real and don't take us as blind gobshites you tit.
Paul  Gladwell     Posted 22/11/2007 at 10:19:07   Comments (65)

Lescott

Lescott has been outstanding for us this season and I have been a little worried that he might attract the attention of wealthy suitors. Thankfully based on tonights performance for Enngland,he will not go the way of Rooney, Barmby etc. So every cloud has a silver lining.
Kieran Kinsella     Posted 22/11/2007 at 05:58:06   Comments (48)

More like it...

The article in the Echo and accompanying artists impression is certainly more like what I would expect in a stadium for a club of our stature & history.

I obviously haven't an idea of the logistics or viability of this but this is what we & the club deserve. Kenwright / Wyness take off the blinkers.
Wayne McNee     Posted 21/11/2007 at 13:51:30   Comments (19)

London Proud

This Saturday I'm taking my new girlfriend for her first (and my second) ever football match to watch us annihilate Sunderland. Nothing else to say really, apart from that I'm really excited.

Abb (age 29 and a half), a Blue living in London
Abb Dhanani     Posted 21/11/2007 at 12:10:50   Comments (22)

Zenit game live in US!

I just checked the Fox Soccer tv guide for December 5th (it was just updated a few minutes ago) and they are showing the Everton v Zenit St. Petersburg game live! COYB!
Martin Cutler     Posted 21/11/2007 at 05:10:02   Comments (16)

A small reminder of how far we have come...

This was in the paper today ? we're not the subject, Christian Gross is (!) but in the piece was:

"They were 16th in the table after 14 matches, just one point off the relegation zone. Everton and Bolton, the two teams directly beneath them, each had a game in hand... For his first match in charge, Gross took a Spurs side that had lost four in a row to Goodison Park and won 2-0"
I know it's not perfect, but jeez one look at this and you realise how far we have come....
Tim Taylor     Posted 20/11/2007 at 22:15:36   Comments (28)

Stadium debate continues to rage

In all the articles both for and against one thing has not, in my opinion, clearly been understood. Goodison is falling down ? in several years we will not get safety certificates or at worst have to operate at vastly reduced capacity. So we have to move or re-develop and fast.

Option 1 - Re-development of Goodison is EFC financed (and we have no money), time consuming and we could not survive the loss of income during construction.

Option 2 - Build a new state of the art, iconic new stadium somewhere. I believe if this was an option, the fans would give a resounding vote to stay in Liverpool. Problem - cost say £250 million but we have no money.

Option 3 ? get into bed with someone with money to make it affordable ie Tesco & Kirkby.

So far no debate option 3 is the only solution.

However, is Kenwright keeping investors at bay, or in collusion with those who would fund option 1 or 2? This ploy would make financially sense all round. At the moment Kenwright would get very little for his shares if an investor had to put funding for a new stadium up front. However, wait for the stadium to be built, add £250 million to the balance sheet and this make his shares very attractive.

Result - Bill gets a shedload of cash and investors pick up EFC for peanuts in real terms.

Losers ? Everton brand name and Everton loyal fans. I can still hear the chant at the derby ? ?F off to Kirkby!?
Andrew Mahon     Posted 20/11/2007 at 16:51:47   Comments (6)

Alan Irvine

I've just heard the news that Alan Irvine is going to be the new manager of Preston North End. On behalf of all Evertonians i would like to thank Alan for all of his hard work during his time with the Blues, and wish him all the best for the future.
Keith  Slinger     Posted 20/11/2007 at 14:50:52   Comments (31)

Nice Link

If you follow this link, you get to an interesting article written by a Celtic fan about our team. It's nice to get some perspective from outside ToffeeWeb and other dedicated websites. Everywhere I go, the conversation with other supporters who know their football is along similar lines and shows how far we have come (although we still have a way to go too !)

PS love the comments at the end of the article where even some reds from the City give us our due....
Steve Guy     Posted 20/11/2007 at 13:50:13   Comments (4)

What`s our priority?

The fear that we could be without FOUR of our regular players for the central part of the season has suddenly become reality with the news that Anichebe, Yobo, Yakubu and Pienaar will all be off to the African Nations Cup. To me that means the spine of the team will be missing at a very crucial part of the season and begs the question as to the manager`s foresightedness is signing the two Africans brought in last summer.

Be that as it may, he will surely have to address the shortfall in numbers during the January `window` ? but just where do HIS priorities lie?

To me, we can just about get by in defence with Stubbs and Jagielka able to cover for Yobo. People on here have been saying for weeks that we have an embarrassment of riches up-front and our wealth in that area will be put to the test very shortly. Personally, I doubt whether AJ, Faddy and Vaughan will be up to actually getting the goals we could expect from our absentees but soon we shall know the answer.

From the foregoing, you will know that I am again leading up to the old chestnut of our already inadequate midfield resources. Whilst Pienaar is hardly the general we have cried out for, he WILL be missed. Just one or two injuries to the other regulars will see us relying on the doubtful legs of Tommy G and Moyes`s delusion that Neville and Jags can play in midfield!

But, as with everything else Everton, I know opinions differ. So what do YOU see as our priority ? or would you take a chance on what we`ve got?
Brian  Noble     Posted 20/11/2007 at 12:56:55   Comments (8)

Tesco in town

Just out of interest, what would be the response to having a similar-looking (ie. Tesco branded or Tesco-neighbouring) stadium right in the centre of town? Say, the Kirkby proposal at the Scotland Road site? Hypothetically speaking of course. Just trying to gauge what the more important issue is here. Branding or location?
Chris Odedun     Posted 20/11/2007 at 00:07:31   Comments (19)

Cowshed in Kirkby

I have to say, I admire a lot of the articles placed on here. They are well thought out. Eloquently put and my god how long they are! I just wish I had that kind of skill to put articles and even letters together with that kind of detail. No I am just a simple man with simple needs and when I have something to say I just say it.

The way the stadium is going to look? I understand about the Stadium not being a standalone stadium not being very good and I have to say I agree with that. I am not however saying I don?t like the design of the New Stadium, nor am I say I do like it. What I do think is that there are enough people who are of the opinion that it isn?t a good design and it needs to be changed.

Well if so many Evertonian?s feel it needs to be changed, why don?t we make a representation to the club and try and get a design we would all like and be proud of? I am sure we could rally enough support to get quite a good team together to ensure we put enough pressure on the club to make some of the changes.

Now I know there are a lot of hurdles to get over before the stadium becomes a reality but if these are overcome (and the likelihood is that the club and Tesco will), I think we should have some sort of say in what our stadium is going to look like.

Now if you haven?t already picked it up. I voted for the move to Kirkby but just before I voted the Bestway proposal came out of nowhere. Well not exactly nowhere but from the council and others. I think you could forgive me for thinking this was a bit of a desperate measure from a city council who have throughout the years seriously undermined everything that is or even ever was Everton. I think you can also forgive me for not thinking it was a viable alternative when every man and his dog ( including Liverpool FC as it turns out) didn?t think the Loop was anything like big enough to house a 55,000 stadium of course taking into account the logistics of moving that amount of people and accompanying vehicles around the entrance to the tunnel. I am sure someone will come up with the idea of bridges across the roads etc. On that just visit the JJB Stadium at Wigan then try to get over the canal bridge at the back and see how long it takes you. That my friends, is only part of the 25 000 crowd (if full). I have yet to see a proposal detailing any financial structure or even what the stadium design would be. I do hear an awful lot of rhetoric and preaching but all pyrrhic.

I was left with a choice then, how do I vote. Hang on what about Redeveloping Goodison Park. Absolutely without doubt would have been the best option in my eyes. Now what would that require. Let me see.

  • Money and lots of it. Who will pay?
  • Design and build... Can it be done??
  • Council approval... Has it ever been forthcoming in the past???
  • What would that take... the compulsory purchase of a number of houses and maybe some businesses at a cost of??
  • Any sign the council would sanction that?
  • Do we really want to be seen as the club who evicted a 80-year-old woman who had been living there for almost as long as the club has?.
Does anyone see my dilemma here? I know there were other places mentioned such as Speke, Long Lane etc but the situation about the finances still remains. Anyway, I voted for the move to Kirkby. I still stand by that decision and will even if we end up with a shite-looking stadium. What we will have is a collection of Evertonians inside cheering on the team. I defy anyone who believe themselves to be an Evertonian to deny that they would not scream with delight when Everton scored whether they were watching on telly or in a stadium which looked like a cowshed. (By the way, when the Redshite start slagging us off over the name cowshed, remember it was an Evertonian that said it first.)

My point to all of this is that we are Everton and we all have a point of view. The likelihood is we move to Kirkby. Is there going to be any representations made to the club from ToffeeWeb about the stadium design or are we all going to keep going over the same old ground which in actual fact won't change anything?
Mick Mac     Posted 19/11/2007 at 18:40:19   Comments (30)

Ticket Discrimination

I am very angry that frequent discrimination by Everton Football Club over ticketing has gone overlooked. For example, West Ham away in the League Cup is £27 for season ticket holders and £34 for non season ticket holders. Why? This is the same seat, in the same position?!

The main reasons not all fans have season tickets is that either they can't get to the games often or cannot afford the outlay of a season ticket. This discrimination only serves to further highlight the fact that we are not all in an economic position to buy season tickets.

This is also the case for home games in the UefaCup (£20 instead of £15). It hardly encourages fringe non-season ticket holding supporters does it?

I personally feel it is a disgrace, does anyone agree? Should we ever move to a new stadium, these are the very fans who will be needed to pack out a larger ground!!!
Michael  Lawrence     Posted 19/11/2007 at 17:34:57   Comments (24)

Who should replace Irvine?

Looks like Irvine is off to Preston... Who should replace him?

Irvine has done a great job and supported David Moyes very well. Would anyone have any qualms about Sammy Lee as a replacement? Probably the best available Assistent out their. Shame he is a kopite!

Personally I would like to see some foreign influence brought in.
Craig Taylor     Posted 19/11/2007 at 16:26:24   Comments (107)

Home-Grown Talent

I have read a couple of threads on ToffeeWeb during the past couple of weeks regarding the potential of some of the youth / academy player's that we currently have on the books. Although yet to be household names, trainees such as Rodwell, Agard, Kissock and Baxter have all been mentioned as potential star's of the future.

During an international break, newsworthy items are often hard to come by concerning Everton, the continuing emergence of Lescott for England and McFadden's heartbreak for Scotland apart. However, one issue that has once again been raised has been the suggestion of a future cap on the quota of foreign player's in each Premier League side. It is highly likely that due to European employment legislation such a suggestion will remain a non-starter, and after all much of the furore has been due to the England team's inability to perform at a level expected of it.

The relocation of the first team and academy set-up at Finch Farm has brought with it some welcome news of what the future may hold for some of the rising starlets in the youth set up. Couple this with a community programme second to none and Everton will hopefully continue to reap the benefit of attracting the stars of the future.

The emergence of Vaughan and Anichebe and Rooney before have shown that Everton are well capable of honing and developing youth talent, hats off to the academy set up for such achievements and here's hoping that the future nucleus of Everton will be built on those coming through the ranks as they develop on the same facilities afforded to the first team squad.
Peter Laing     Posted 19/11/2007 at 15:08:49   Comments (7)

Joleon Lescott

Do you think he?ll play on Wednesday? I think he will after Friday?s performance. Does he have the potential to be an England regular? My vote?s a yes. He?s settled into the England side now, and was as good as any of the England defenders on Friday night. He?s 2 years younger than Terry, King and Woodgate, and has four years on Rio Ferdinand.

He only lacks tactical awareness, and that will come with experience in the Prem, Europe and with England. England?s defence were far too deep in the second half, similar to Everton in Europe. Otherwise he has everything in his locker including goals.

I don?t believe in any of the ?we don?t want him to play for England, he?ll get injured or ?it?ll knock his confidence if England don?t qualify? rubbish. This is invaluable experience for Lescott, and the improvement he?ll make for it will greatly benefit Everton. Fingers crossed that Baines and Vaughan can propel themselves into the squad within the next two years. It?s one thing having American, Nigerian, South African, Scottish, Irish, Australian etc internationals in the side, but for me England internationals are the best sort.
Phil Tweed     Posted 19/11/2007 at 14:16:33   Comments (12)

The cure for Kirkbyitis

I, for one, would happily shut-up forever about the stadium move. All it would take is for a single "yes" voter to say (without irony, and with utmost sincerity) that, when presented with the latest batch of images, they felt genuine pride and excitement at the prospect ahead.

I respect the "yes" voters for having made a decision on the basis of perceived expediency. I accept totally that their votes were based entirely on what they judged to be the club's best interests, and that in the long run they may prove to have been right. I have no interest in name-calling or levelling insults.

I would simply be fascinated to hear if there is anyone out there who actually likes out-of-town retail developments, and looks forward spending more time in the middle of one of them.
Steve Rooney     Posted 19/11/2007 at 10:32:40   Comments (21)

Barr Construction

Dunno if you've ever played around with 'mix & match' type software....looks like there's fairly limited imagination on the part of our future stadium builders. Check out the glass facade on the front another of our favourite grounds on this link... look familiar??
Paul Columb     Posted 19/11/2007 at 03:05:45   Comments (7)

New signing...

Everton have signed Northern Irish Shane Duffy from Foyle Harps in Derry. That takes the number of players representing Everton in the current Victory Shield tournament up to 5 (Baxter, Davies, Roberts and McArdle are the others).

Duffy was attracting the interest of Arsenal, Manchester United and Celtic but he chose Everton for two reasons; Finch Farm facilities are second to none, and that he wanted to show some loyalty to Everton who were first interested in him two years ago and not some Johnny-come-latelies who wanted to sign him solely on the back of his Victory Shield appearances. Incidentally scouts were also impressed by his younger brother and he is expected to join the academy in the future.

Name: Shane Duffy Position: Centre Half Born: 1/1/92 (age 15) Place of Birth: Londonderry, Northern Ireland

Sources - http://www.nsno.co.uk/news.php?item.2915.57 - http://www.toffeetalk.com/index.php?showtopic=8715
Tommy O'Hare     Posted 19/11/2007 at 00:11:27   Comments (6)

Heart and soul

When Wimbledon moved to MK did they stop being Wimbledon? Did they lose their uniqueness as a club? I would suggest the answer to both is yes.

Did they reap the financial benefits of a new stadium? Did they attract thousands of new loyal, life long supporters? I guess not.

Now before I'm ripped apart for even suggesting Wimbledon as a comparison for Everton, I know they do not have our heritage nor history and I know their move was a lot more than 4 miles and they were and will always be a small club. The point is they had their soul and heart ripped out when they moved. The same club, same name, same players but for many Wimbledon supporters it was not their Wimbledon anymore.

So, to those who say they cannot bring themselves to go to Kirkby, I for one will not judge you poorly. I only get back to Liverpool twice a year to see the blues (don't tell my Mum she thinks its to see her) and I will go to Kirkby but I don't expect to feel the same tingle of excitment pre-match and an easier purchase of a drink, pie and a visit to the loo will not replace the missing soul and heart which is being ripped out not just by the current custodians of our history and future but by the destructive nature of this debate by fellow Evertonians.

What will be left when the move finally comes I dread to think!
Mike Dishome     Posted 18/11/2007 at 22:46:14   Comments (8)

Scotland vs Italy

International football does not bother me in the slightest, I hate everything about it, the media, the pundits, I could go on. But yesterday, as I was watching 11 Scots giving everything for their country, putting every last bit of energy into every tackle, I found myself screaming at the tele desperatly wanting them to score a winner.

The commitment and heart of captain Barry Ferguson now makes me look back and think, I wish he had of signed for Everton now. The one man that impressed me more than any other player, was Alan Hutton. A great defender but fantastic going forward too. He has everything, pace, dribbling, tacking and crossing. He is someone who I believe would greatly improve our side, and is also a realistic target. Surely Moyes is looking at making an offer for him in January. Maybe we could include Turner as part of the deal.
John  Murphy     Posted 18/11/2007 at 14:00:36   Comments (6)

Buckley can add value to our left side...

Yesterday I watched the game between South Africa and the USA. Wasn't a pretty game of soccer, but a few players really stood out for me. Tim Howard had an excellent game and Steven Pienaar a very poor performance...then again, he always plays below par for SA.

... and an SA tour can do!

Buckley was again one of the players that really stood out for me, his passes and running off the ball is just a marvel to watch. Adu, the 18 year old striker looks like a real deal. He plays for Benfica and we could do with such young talent.

The 2010 host lost to the USA as expected, but it opened my eyes to something we South African Evertonians need! Bring the team down to South Africa in the next off season! Man U did last and they won the league that same season. Spurs did it a few months ago, and so does a lot of top team from Europe. We would love see our team here and pack one these stadia to capacity.

Do you know Eventon is far bigger that Spurs in South Africa, Spurs had full stadiums all the games they played in, imagine what games would look like if we played? Sundowns FC and Ajax Cape Town FC( Mc Carthy and Pienaar's former club) can be some stiff competition.
Edward Humphries     Posted 18/11/2007 at 07:47:55   Comments (4)

We are Everton

The whole stadium debate was never very far away was it? A couple of "not what the brochure said" images and an international weekend and away we go, the hatred, the insults, the name calling...

I'd like to declare early that I voted no, if the vote was done again I`d still vote no, but I have total respect for the opinions of the guys who voted yes.
I`ve listened carefully to the endless claims from both sides — "we`re the real Evertonians, we won't go" or "we're the true Blues, we`ll go anywhere" It would be funny if...

We argue about who is in the majority — "we got 15,000 votes" from the yes camp, is countered by "there's 60,000 of us in total so 15,000 constitutes a minority. Just about every Evertonian has learned to play with stats, lies, damn lies etc.

The fact is our fanbase is split in two. Yes, we've all been on cloud nine recently with events on the pitch, but the agression towards each other, the sense of betrayal expressed on both sides shows that heroics on the pitch only serve to mask this deep divide.

Everton's strength isn't Goodison Park, it won't be Kirkby if that happens. Our strength will never be the place we hang our hat. Everton's strength, uniqueness, the thing that sets us apart is us.You and me, the Evertonians. We are Everton.

Guys, we are in real danger of pressing the self-destruct button here. We can't afford our differences to become irreconsilible; if we do we`re finished, we really do become Wigan/ Boro/ Bolton ( no disrepect meant to those clubs).

I believe the custodians have created this divide and I believe they are obligated to at least try to heal it. Lets have the custodians to come and talk to us, answer EVERY question — not just the ones they have good answers for.

Let's hear them say they have or will explore any decent alternative and if its a non-starter, explain why. Lets have forums where every fear or suspicion is tackled,

Standing in front of a hired camera crew answering pre-arranged questions will never get the no voters on board. Let's have these guys tell us the exclusivity clause has been put to one side — if only to stop the finger of suspicion being pointed — for a period of say 9 -12 months. What is a year in the scheme of things?

I know the yes voters will say "why should they" but you guys are already on board, you've been won over. We all want, sorry need, a unified Everton and doing nothing will not bring that about.


Dave Wilson     Posted 18/11/2007 at 05:46:49   Comments (16)

Negativity

Regarding the increased frequency of comments regarding the 'negativity' on ToffeeWeb... It's the only Everton-related site where real discourse occurs. Love Bluekipper for a good laugh at the expense of the shite but that's as far as it goes. The official site is an embarassment; nice how you can comment with the single option of 'thumbs up', but if you you're not lapping up all that corporate shite...tough. Regardless of your take on matters regarding the club, we should all be greatful for this gem that is ToffeeWeb; thanks for all the hard graft lads. COYB
Paul  Columb     Posted 18/11/2007 at 02:39:47   Comments (10)

Youth to get chance soon

I think it's about time players like Keiran Agard and Jack Rodwell were given a chance in the first team. Does anyone else agree with me?
Steve  Bird     Posted 17/11/2007 at 21:25:56   Comments (15)

Squad Additions

I believe there are 3 positions that we need to strengthen in. A quality right back, a combative midfielder and a covering centre half.

The following are players that may not necessarily be available but I'd like to see brought in.

I'd go for Alan Hutton of Rangers for right back. He's been impressive in the Champions League and playing for Scotland. An excellent defender who is really good going forward as well.

If Fernandes is available, I think we should get him. Failing that, I'd take Sissoko from the shite. Both are young, have great engines and have got skill to go with their battling qualtiies.

For a centre half, Wes Brown from United woud be decent aquisition. Paul Scharner from Wigan looks a decent player and has the flexibility to play in midfield as well.

Strengthening in these areas is key to us continuing our progression.
Brian Lawlor     Posted 17/11/2007 at 17:30:37   Comments (21)

Will I still be an Evertonian?

Many months ago, I vowed that the day Everton left the city of my birth I would stop supporting them.

Now I know that many will see that as narrow minded,short sighted or just plain cussed but I made the vow and I will stick to it. Mrs Isherwood says the only person it will hurt is me ? and she`s probably right about that ? but I could not in all conscience be part of an organisation that sold its soul for commercial expediency.

I earnestly believe that 95% of the "yes" voters if they had to be honest KNOW this move is morally wrong. But what price morals in today's world?

OK, I`ll still listen out for the score and no doubt get drawn into discussion in the alehouse but does that still qualify me as an Evertonian? When you've missed no more than a dozen home games in forty-odd years, it doesn't fit right but like marriage and old age, I guess I`ll get used to it. Does anybody else feel the same?


Derek Isherwood     Posted 17/11/2007 at 13:55:27   Comments (43)

International Breaks and ToffeeWeb

I hate internationl breaks for several reasons:-
1) Everton aren't playing and I miss that 2) England are playing and are usually rubbish
3) The ToffeeWeb site draws out loads of people who are filled will spite and bile and choose to direct it at Bill Kenwright, Keith Wyness and anyone else who dares to be at all happy with the current Everton situation.

What amazes me is the aggression and vitriol expressed by a number of correspondents against fellow Evertonians.

The personal attacks and vicious comments should stop and a number of people need to calm down.

Personally I think a number of things are going quite well at the moment but I guess I must be a naive, stupid, complacent, short-sighted lickspittle who will swallow anything Everton tells me.

So here's looking forward to when we start playing again and people can comment on the football. Come on you blues.
Paul Hardy     Posted 17/11/2007 at 09:13:10   Comments (10)

Any regrets?

OK, I know this ground move issue is sensitive, but I have to post this.

I voted for the move, I did not want to move but I felt, I am sure like many others, that we had no choice. I still feel Kirkby with Tesco funding is a great deal, but I am now, after being very much for the move, very apprehensive.

I remember going to Wigan away a few years ago and seeing there ground at the far end of a retail complex, and thinking, "this is shite," and after seeing the pictures yesterday it filled me with fear. I would still be for Kirkby if the place looked the business, I really would... but it does not look the business, does it? I challange anyone who now thinks it does. If the vote was cast tomorrow it would be rejected, I am sure of this.

I wish now I could change my vote. I know we cannot stay where we are, but you cannot say the team is suffering can you? The team and squad is getting stronger and where are we? The Old Lady herself... I still dread the day they have their shiney new stadium and w'ere sitting in a stand that is 110 years old. This, I think, was the reason Kirkby got voted in... but I, for one, have changed my mind. Is it too late?


Mick Gillian     Posted 17/11/2007 at 01:36:12   Comments (42)

Arteta off to Atletico (if he has his way)

Reading this article, one would think that Mikel is trying to stage a return to Spanish football. This could be (and usually is) media shite but there must have been a grain of a comment somewhere that led to the article, unless we are to think that it has just been fabricated by someone with an agenda. Wait and see the reaction of Moyes / Irvine in the next few days.
Peter  Pridgeon     Posted 16/11/2007 at 20:40:09   Comments (22)

Stadium Capacity

One of the reasons for a new stadium is to allow us to compete once again with Man U and Liverpool. How are we ever going to compete with them if the stadium only extends to 60,000? We may as well put up a white flag to them. Why not make it extendable to 80,000?

Keep the initial capacity at 50,000 of course. Sure we're years off competing with them, but then this stadium is for the rest of our lifetime and our children's lifetime. So why put such a small lid on our ambitions?

No-one can envisage what football will be like in 20, 30, 40+ years' time, but it doesn't mean we shouldn't plan for it.

We may never need to even go beyond 50,000, but what would we have lost by building each stand with a foundation that will allow for an extra tier? Nothing. Have we not learnt anything by this move away from Goodison regarding regarding future expansion?

If we do ever achieve a period of domination and reach a point where we need to go beyond 60,000, will we all be voting on a move to Skelmersdale? Just because because we couldn't be bothered amending the design now.

There are also other advantages to making the stadium 50,000 extendable to 80,000. If and when we do need to expand we will have the choice on how we expand. For example if we wanted to extend to 60,000 we are not forced into adding four corners. We will have the option of retaining four indivual stands and adding a third tier to the side stands. Each new additional tier will have the added benefit of being fitted with the all the latest state of the art gadgets of the day.

At this point, we will have have a 60,000 stadium plus options on how to extend. The stadium can grow when Everton can grow. If we don't grow then the stadium doesn't have to grow.
Peter Benson     Posted 16/11/2007 at 16:50:50   Comments (23)

Everton Travel

Away from the stadium debate... I have usually been reasonably impressed with Everton regarding travel/tickets, etc, but I know I am in the minority, or just lucky! Just in case anyone is depending on them for the next trip, thought I?d let you know the following:

I rang Everton Travel earlier in the week to enquire about Alkmaar. Was told they were having a meeting to discuss. Rang again today to be informed that they are not organising away trips any more.

I then phoned Everton only to be given Everton Travel?s number — the Box Office were completely unaware of the situation.

Eventually managed to get hold of someone who was supposed to know what is going on — apparently he only found out a day or so ago. He doesn?t know whether Everton will be doing an official trip or not. Needs to find out about ticket allocation etc., they must have some idea!

As it will be so close to Christmas, it will be difficult getting flights and their official line is not to book travel until you have a ticket — but I thought you could only get a ticket by proving you had made travel arrangements! Catch 22.
Lynn  Thorne     Posted 16/11/2007 at 11:24:49   Comments (4)

Firepower!!

Johnson, Yakubu, Vaughan, McFadden and Anichebe. All what I consider to be top-class Premiership strikers. I would say any of these players would walk into any team in the bottom half of the league.

I am finding it difficult to distinguish between them. I genuinely believe they all add value and quality to the squad, which we can only credit Moyes on. At the moment, due to our participation and progression in all the cup competitions, we can say they are all happy, as there is enough football to go round.

However, if we do not qualify for Europe this year, and considering we like to adopt the 4-5-1 formation to maximise Cahill?s impact, how are we going to keep these guys happy?? And I put it to the ToffeeWeb readers, when there isn?t enough football to go round, who do we keep? and who do we let go? Because at the moment, I think they?re all great players, so I have no idea!
Chris  Masey     Posted 16/11/2007 at 11:15:38   Comments (8)

Everton interested in Sissoko

Just read at a Bulgarian sports site that Everton have expressed interested in Momo Sissoko who might leave Liverpool in January.

Liverpool have reportedly rejected a 7 million pound offer from Juventus in the summer, but now may be willing to sell ot Inter or Everton.

I am very skeptical about this going anywhere although I won't be unhappy if it does. He is younger and ten times better than any of your defensive midfielders. And he is taller.
Pavel Ivanov     Posted 16/11/2007 at 10:02:32   Comments (18)

Are we becoming the Hammers?

We all know Vaughan keeps getting injured so him pulling out of the Under-21s was expected but with Vic and Timmy now out, the Yak in doubt, who's left fit?

Remembering that Arteta is already a doubt for Sunderland and AJ, Baines and Stubbs only just recovering, are we gaining a Hammers/ Barcodes length of injury list???
Rob  Heaton     Posted 15/11/2007 at 21:12:58   Comments (19)

Pity I never followed my own advice

Somewhere deep in the bowels of ToffeeWeb's archives can be found a submission I posted during a brief resurgence of the Stadium debate a week or two after the vote. I was so pissed off with the attempts to breathe further, last gasp life into old and lost arguments that I advised 'yes' voters to ignore the whole thing and to let the naysayers discuss it amongst themselves.

It's been quiet for a while. But now my prophecy, which was a part of the discussion I posted, has borne fruit. I prophesied that every time a development occurred within the stadium issue the debate would kick off again because it was the only tactic the naysers had left And a pretty desparate tactic at that. The argument was lost; the protesters outside the players lounge all went home in the same taxi and even the KEIOC airforce had failed to impress, in fact it was an embarrassment.

It was a pity that, especially in light of the accuracy of my prophecy, I did not follow my own advice. During this latest resurgence of the stadium debate I forgot that it will happen again when Knowsley Council formally discuss the residents responses. I forgot it will happen again when planning permission is granted. I forgot it will happen again when the first brick is laid and I can't imagine what will happen when the bulldozer's arrive at Goodison.In short, I got involved!Again!

So I am going to disengage from this debate because the arguments have been heard , the votes counted and the decision taken. From now on I am going to concentrate on thinking about a resurgent team. A team that has scored some wonderful goals over the last few weeks and (I think off the top of my head) 13 goals in 5 games. A team that is capable of playing the best football I have seen an Everton team play in years, many years, and, more importantly, a team which I can only see getting better. I am going to take my own advice and concentrate on that rather than the Stadium debate.

However, in a submission today by Michael Kenrick (I am not sure if it was THE MK as his name did not appear in the usual blue) the implication was made that Evertonians who voted YES were less thoughtful than those who voted No and that (at least perhaps) their virtue as Evertonians was less proven. There was also by implication a suggestion that we cared less about the Club and The Grand Old Lady. Before I depart this debate I would, at least, welcome the opportunity to respond to that as it is a new and unexpected accusation.

Let nobody accuse me of loving our Club any less than any other Evertonian just because I did not vote in the way that the majority on this website would expect. Let nobody accuse me of being thoughtless in my decision to vote in the way that I did.... because I voted in the way that I did because of my love for our club. And let nobody accuse me of not loving Goodison any less than any other Evertonian. I first attended Goodison with my father just after we were promoted and I helped carry his brother out of the place when he died there a few years later, in my company, during a game. I took bemused girlfriends there in the early sixties (yes, even before the Beatles!) and met my future wife in the queue in Bullens Road for semi-final tickets in 1966 (the game was played at Bolton) I have left Goodison Park in tears of sadness and joy over the years and in times of paucity I have walked there from as far away as Garston. In many ways it is more of a 'home' to me than the little bungalow I live in now.

As a kid I hated to leave the place after games and hung around for hours, win or lose, and I was always in there as soon as the gates opened at 1.30 pm. I have been going to Goodison Park even longer than Pat Beesley who now says she will not be going to the game if or when we move to Kirkby. Unlike Pat I WILL still be there, watching my beloved Everton until, perhaps one day, my nephew carries ME away for the last time!( I hope we win that day!)

I know many are unhappy at leaving Goodison. So am I. Desperately so.But unless somebody comes up with an inarguable alternative (in all respects) then my beloved Everton have to come first, even before Goodison or Liverpool city, and I support the advantages of the move to KIrkby... and I will be there because that will be where Everton play so (to use a suffix so popular on this site) END OF!


Dave Roberts     Posted 15/11/2007 at 18:57:44   Comments (25)

Mandate

Although I don't recall the exact wording on the ballot paper, my understanding was that a "yes" allowed the club to continue discussions re. a move to Kirby. It was NOT a rubber stamping of any decision. Will all those who declare that the vote decided we are to move to Kirby please bear this in mind when posting. Yes and No voters alike need to remember this and urge the custodians of our Club to remain open-minded.

This should not be the end of the process but the start of doing what is best for Everton FC. This will the biggest decision this club has ever made. The vote happened we made our choices. We should not however close our minds to reviewing our decisions.

Please keep our minds open to the evolving situation and let's not be afraid to lift our heads above our entrenched positions. The vote is over the hard work should now begin.
Peter Jones     Posted 15/11/2007 at 18:14:10   Comments (11)

Stitched up by Leahy?

I noticed this week whilst leafing through the Echo a supplement in the housing section concerning Project Jennifer. Many will know that this is the name that has been given to the proposed regeneration of the Great Homer Street / Scotland road area of the City.

As the urban sprawl of city centre regeneration continues to gather pace it would appear that this historical and neglected enclave at the foot of Everton brow is earmarked for some much needed tlc to revert the effects of countless years of neglect and social and economic deprivation.

What caught me from the contents of the supplement is the apparent appetite of buyers to invest in the residential aspects of the scheme, driven by the fact that Tesco have plans to build a superstore in the immediate vicinity. The loop site proposal has been well documented on these pages and numerous others on the internet, discounted as being unworkable by the board of Everton FC and its chief advisor - Sir Terence Leahy. Would this decision be based on the fact that if Tesco is to get its wishes and that is the construction of a mega superstore - Tesco Extra in the growing conurbation of Kirby, then it needs an able partner?

Tesco are not known for their philanthropy with a corporate policy that is driven by growth and the ability to spot the next big thing. Project Jennifer should be the rightful home of Everton FC, after all Everton for Everton, so why is it that Sir Terry advises relocation to Kirby ?
Peter Laing     Posted 15/11/2007 at 14:05:46   Comments (24)

Unlimited Everton DVD's & thousands more for £4.99

I have just joined lovefilm.com and there are 39 EFC titles to be seen including FA Cups, UEFA drama and season reviews. Pretty good for £4.99! If you click on the link below I also get a free DVD so be nice (its almost christmas!!)

They've got every UK DVD available to rent, they deliver direct to your door and there are no late fees. Prices start at £3.99 but you can try it free for a month, no strings attached, by clicking on this link.
Amanda Huddleston     Posted 15/11/2007 at 13:30:43   Comments (8)

If you don't know your history or even if you do!!

Fellow supporters and lovers of anything royal blue, might be interested to know that Play.com have the new dvd "Everton - the Official History" due out on 3rd December for £14.99. Retail price is £19.99 so a saving of 25% ? helpful with all those Xmas gifts to buy and what a present!! And no, I'm not on commission.
Patty  Beesley     Posted 15/11/2007 at 12:17:56   Comments (10)

Stand up and be heard

So the debate goes on about our new Tesco extra stadium. Yeah it does look crap and the presentation of that video peice was diabolical, and insulting to those who love the club! If the new stadium is as shoddy and cheap looking as that then we are in big trouble!

It's quite interesting to see how many people before and after the ballot have spoken up about being against the plans, yet far less from the yes camp ever seem to voice their reasons for being in favour. Unfortunately though they made their voice heard during the ballot, and the rest of us are faced with the prospect of a tacky rubbish footy stadium that has no soul.

The point I guess I am trying to make is that when it mattered the 'yes' camp stood up to be counted. Not enough people voted 'no', and in fact a lot of people didn't even vote! So we missed our chance to make a stand against this 'New Everton'. So I guess we should just live with the consequences...

Well actually no we shouldn't! This isn't the peoples choice, regardless of the ballot. Yet what are we actually doing about it?! Complaining about it on the internet (ok so I know thats what i'm doing now so I know i'm being hypocritical) which isn't going to change anything. I hate to bring up Man United as an example, but when the Glaziers were taking over the fans protested, set up their own football team, campaigned against it. We are not doing anything pro active against this.

Ok I know it didn't make any difference in the end, but at least the fans stood up against the regime. Where are our protests outside the ground? After matches? I don't propose anything before or during the game that would have a detrimental impact on the teams performance, but surely we need to be more vocal about this. Even if 20% of the fans stop behind at the end of every home match and chant 'keep everton in our city', or 'no to kirkby' then surely we would have more success?

Why are we not standing up and uniting for the good of our club? Yeah it probably wont make any difference but at least it would show the world that the people have not approved the move like the board have spun in the media! Stand up and be counted before its too late! VIVA LA RESISTANCE!
Andy Hudson     Posted 15/11/2007 at 11:05:35   Comments (23)

How much????

Thanks go to Joe Beardwood once again for so expertly summarizing the Club Accounts. I don`t normally get too excited about what this annual snowjob does or doesn`t reveal but am I to understand that with the latest loan from Barclay`s, the club`s total indebtedness is in the order of £90 Million?

If that is indeed the case, it seems that some major incoming investment is vital if the dream of a new stadium (even at minimal cost) and continued funding for the playing side is to be realised.

But at that level of debt, I don`t think Blue Bill is likely to be attracting too many bidders in the immediate future!
Harry Meek     Posted 15/11/2007 at 10:04:56   Comments (1)

Liverpool city council have shafted Everton big time.

Liverpool City Council have effectively shafted Everton Football Club; we're now gonna end up on a shopping complex in no man's land.

The Council are so biased towards the red its untrue. Look how quick there stadium plans were submitted and approved talk, about fast-track. Not to mention the reds are gonna bulldoze and destroy the famous old Stanley Park in the process. Do you think if we submitted identical plans they would have been approved too? I don?t think so. It would have been rejected no doubt by all the red council members.

Then Liverpool decided they wanted to make the stadium 20% bigger guess what Liverpool council bend over backwards and the whole things agreed in 4 weeks. Disgraceful.

It seems upon their last Champions League final win the reds jumped into bed with the city council trying to ride a wave of euphoria. Looks like it worked. Where has the support from the council been to encourage and entice keeping Everton in the city? I just hope when I?m old and grey I don?t look back and find leaving the city led to the downward spiral of my beloved football club.
Dan Johnson     Posted 15/11/2007 at 09:20:45   Comments (3)

Finance/Loan Moan

Just a lesson on company finance for those moaning about the rate we're paying for a loan. You're never going to get a loan for 25 years at the current base rate. The Bank of England publishes LIBOR cash rates upto a year. Beyond that, it's very difficult to predict future interest rates and that's when you get into the world of swaps and hedging fixed for float cashflow payments on a notional amount.

You would also tend to pay a higher rate for a period further into the future because who knows what could happen. In 20 years, the Polar Ice caps melt and the economy collapses. At that point, the current base rate would look extremely attractive!

I'm not too bothered about the rate to be honest but what worries me is that we keep taking out large loans which we could potentially default on if times fall hard.

I actually think Everton have a fairly decent finance guy somewhere as they keep using option products as part of players contracts. Signing a player for 3 years with a further option of 2 years at a rate agreed today. Quite clever because if Moyes's judgement is good (which generally it is), most players net worth will go up playing for Everton but exercising the option enables us to pay only the price we paid today (rather than the inflated price in the future). If it turns out he's crap, then we only lose the small premium paid up front for taking out the option. It's a snip compared to the millions saved when silly season comes around.

I completely agree when people are concerned when we take out whopping great loans but please don't try and perform a high-level analysis of the terms of any agreements Everton make with financial counterparties.

I don't mean to be a smart arse, just a general view that people make grand sweeping statements on here without really thinking about it.
Dan Parker     Posted 15/11/2007 at 04:29:09   Comments (25)

Accounting

I am lucky enough to be a shareholder, but as per the last few years on here there have been comments raised regarding the Accounts and the ways to interpret them and I wondered whether anyone is in a position to enlighten us all as to how things are going
Ian Smitham     Posted 14/11/2007 at 22:49:32   Comments (0)

KEIOC

I may have missed a trick, but I emailed KEIOC after receiving one of their flyers off a beauty (!) at Goodison Park, and seeing the plane wizzing about the sky with its banner.

I agreed totally with their position about the threatened move to Kirkby, and asked for more information about who they were, how they were backed and how an exiled Blue could assist in their cause.

No response, so I sent another email. Still no response.

Is there anybody out there?
Doug Eaton     Posted 14/11/2007 at 19:06:46   Comments (10)

Question for the AGM

I have just read that the club signed up for a secured 25-year fixed-rate loan at 7.79% when the Bank of England base rate was 4% and this for a sum of £26M plus.!! Please tell me it's not true? Sorry if this is old news but it's news to me.
Steve Lyth     Posted 14/11/2007 at 19:01:26   Comments (12)

Don't forget Pienaar

icliverpool states 'Everton fear they may lose a trio of influential stars for this winter?s African Nations Cup tournament, after Nigeria boss Berti Vogts watched Everton twice in 72 hours last weekend'

Trio? ? The Yak, Yobo and Anichebe obviously.... have they forgotten Pienaar will go as well?

How will we replace them if they all go? AJ for the Yak, Stubbs for Yobo (or Jags), Vaughan for Anichebe (if fit) and Gravesen for Pienaar (surely not Shandy)?
Rich Williams     Posted 14/11/2007 at 17:49:21   Comments (15)

How close is Tesco going to be near our new ground?

From the look of the new pics it's just a stone's throw away ? that is ridiculous. The stadium needs to stand as a single entity like the Emirates/Stadium of light etc. Not be surrounded by Tesco, Ccurrys and bloody Halfords.

I quite liked the new stadium design until I saw the Tesco errected right next to it ? bloody disgraceful.
Dan Johnson     Posted 14/11/2007 at 16:39:16   Comments (20)

BB Don't See

What do you make of the this excuse by the BBC as to why they didn't cover Everton's UEFA Cup exploits?

Who had the rights then? Was it the rather annoying Setanta who seem to pick a lot of Everton games. A lot to subscribe to having already paid for Time Warner Cable (60 quid a month) or Sky if you're in the UK!
Dan Parker     Posted 14/11/2007 at 14:39:20   Comments (3)

Errr..... I don't think you did!

Now I know that this stadium issue has been discussed / debated / argued at great lengths already, but can I just clarify one thing from all those who were eligible to vote.

Having just read Mr Wyness' comments on the icLiverpool site (see ToffeeWeb link) regarding the proposed move, he claims that the Everton Board have, I quote "gained a mandate from our own supporters to relocate to the area".

Now if I am mistaken forgive me, but wasn't the vote for a decision on whether or not EFC continued negotions with Tesco and Kirby Council about the proposed move, and ONLY that? None of this "mandate to relocate" that Wyness is spouting off.

I'm not trying to start an argument as to whether the move is right or not but surely the Board are now just twisting and manipulating things to suit their cause?
Lee Smith     Posted 14/11/2007 at 14:16:42   Comments (23)

McLuxury?

I read all the speculation about Faddy going to Celtic with interest this morning. I'm not surprised to hear that the Scottish giants are interesed in our classy forward, but raised an eyebrow at their rumoured valuation of £4M.

Faddy has been a bit of an enigma at Everton since he arrived here in 2003. As is widely recognised, his talent has never been in doubt but he flatters to deceive more often than not. Moyes seems to have decided that he is most suited to cameo appearances and I believe he has been successful in this role, changing the pace and direction of games and scoring the odd wonder goal.

I must admit that I've always been a fan. I get as frustrated as the next Blue when he unnecessarily gives the ball away or decides to beat another man when a simple pass to a man in space would suffice, but I also love him for it. We're not blessed with a great deal of skill within the squad and Faddy seems to have it in abundance ? couple this with his unashamed arrogance and you get a player that is mesmerizing at his best.

His recent exploits for his national team have obviously increased his profile no end. I've had no end of blokes ask why we don't play him every week. At times I agree with them but recognise the reasons why Moyes is sparing with his appearances ? he's too erratic.

Might we now be seeing a more mature Faddy though? He does appear to be playing more of a team game these days and adds a totally different dimension to our play. His cross into Cahill for THAT goal was sublime (yes, I do believe he meant it!).

In conclusion, for £4M I'd certainly rather keep him as I feel, at 24 years old, there's still a lot more to come from our Scottish wonderkid. The question is whether the manager can keep him happy.
Ben Howard     Posted 14/11/2007 at 11:06:28   Comments (28)

Past Player Query

Looking through your past players, I was looking for a Chris Green who I think played a few matches as an apprentice between 1960-1962. However I cannot find the name, can you help?
Chris Green     Posted 14/11/2007 at 08:45:16   Comments (5)

Dixie Dean pic?

I am trying to track down a photo of the great Dixie Dean shaking hands with my grandfather, Adam Black, of Leicester City prior to an FA Cup 3rd round match at Filbert Street. The picture was taken in January 1933 (Everton winning the tie 3-2 with Dixie Dean predictably getting one of the goals).

Adam Black holds the record for the most league appearances for "The Foxes" and a copy of the picture would be a great addition to my collection of memorabilia. Can you put out an appeal for help/assistance for me please?

Thanking you in anticipation. Kind regards.
Allister Black     Posted 14/11/2007 at 01:15:02   Comments (3)

First Trip to Goodison

I am a 19 year old from the United States and I will be making my first trip to Liverpool/Goodison park during the Christmas holiday. If all goes well in terms of purchasing tickets I plan on seeing my boys in blue take on Arsenal. Hoping for another stunner at the end it should be a heck of a game especially if Arsenal still hold the top spot.

I was curious if anyone had any tips on what to do while in Liverpool, especially on gameday. Any recommended pubs? Festivities? Traditions? Also what are everyone's preference in terms of seating at Goodison. All and all any suggestions on how to make my first trip to Goodison a memorable one would be appreciated. Thanks
Mark  Flehmer     Posted 13/11/2007 at 21:53:36   Comments (43)

Vidarsson Good Enough?

Now that Bjarni Vidarsson has been called into the full Iceland International squad the question is will he ever make the Everton first team?

Vidarsson is now 19-years-old and has yet to make his Everton debut. The youngster has risen through the Everton youth ranks, impressed at reserve level and even had a decent short loan at Bournemouth but so far the bench is as close as he's got to playing for the first team.

Clearly he has potential and Moyes is very good at giving youngsters a chance but will we ever see Vidarsson in the first team?

Is Vidarsson the midfield player the team clearly needs or just a not-quite-good-enough youngster who will eventually end up in a lower division (like Hughes, Clarke, Chadwick, et al)?
Dutch Schaffaer     Posted 13/11/2007 at 21:06:29   Comments (9)

Tim's Overhead Bicycle Kick

Can anyone remember Everton scoring with a goal like this before.. If so, when was it?
David Kenrick     Posted 13/11/2007 at 18:12:27   Comments (20)

Next Summer midfield targets

After just reading that ridiculous post about Moyes being offered the England job I thought I'd change the subject to something else that is not currently relevant but maybe a bit more interesting. We all know that the area in the team that we need to strengthen is midfield and that signing needs to be a quality player. But I started to think of some players who meet the Moyes bargain buy criteria or maybe a little under the radar. One player who comes to mind is Clint Dempsey of Fulham.

This American kid has come into that team and played very well but is also a hard working and tough midfielder, very much the Moyes type of player. He has a lot of skill on the ball, puts in a tackle, knows how to finish, is good in the air and is an attacking midfielder who can play on the wing and support the striker in the middle (for those times when Cahill's out).

I'm not saying that this is the top quality central midfielder we are looking for but he would definitely improve our team and add more quality depth to the midfield. One other important thing about him is that he is actually tall. He is 6'1", so would add some much needed height to our team, a need Moyes has said he is aware of.

The reason I mention him is that I think Fulham will be in trouble this season with possible relegation. If they go down he will be available. But even if they don't I think this guy would be a good buy to add to our midfield at a reasonable price. And one last thing. Everton have a U.S. keeper, Everton love to go to the U.S. for the preseason, Dempsey is one of America's best players. Wouldn't this be a terrific signing to expand the Everton brand in America while at the same time improving our short in stature midfield.
David  Barks     Posted 13/11/2007 at 16:50:57   Comments (3)

Buy, buy, buy, Fernandes?

Check out this article about Manuel Fernandes

Would you have him back? Or do you think he's burnt his bridges? After all, there is no doubt he would improve the team.

Should we swallow our pride and try and entice him here, perhaps on loan again, or do you think the little shit has had his chance?

Discuss...
Franny Porter     Posted 13/11/2007 at 16:42:43   Comments (7)

Moyes is going to be offered the England job!

Apparently Barwick is going to offer Moyes the position once McLaren moves on before Everton give him a mega bucks contract.

Dunno if there is any truth in it. Do you think he would take it if asked?
Dan Johnson     Posted 13/11/2007 at 15:00:49   Comments (29)

CL Qualification

After reading the article on future CL qualification, ubder the headline of "moving further away," I was quite surprised. As in reality it turns out to have made it even easier, especially for English teams, to qualify.

As it stands only the top 2 qualify automatically so surely the top 3 being automatic qualifiers helps. As for the 4th place team, whilst yes they will play more qualifiers the introduction of more lesser teams will make this easier, especially as some of the more stronger teams (Auld Firm, and other top nations 3rd place teams ) will already have qualified ? so in reality more likely to play the likes of the Mentalists rather than your Villarreals.

When you also consider the gap between the usual top 4 and ourselves along with the clubs closing rapidly with foreign investment, by 2009 these places could be open for anyone. We showed it was possible in 2004 and that must set a precedent for future years ? just look at the power houses of English football in the 1980's...
Jack Calvert     Posted 13/11/2007 at 13:27:09   Comments (1)

Essien and the 50/50 Challenge

Michael Essien's challenge on Ossie on Sunday had me in an immediate rage, even in real time and not with the benefit of the subsequent replays, as it was obvious that he went in 'studs-up'.

In South Africa, the games are broadcast with the standard commentator, with additional comments by an ex-pro (usually complete no-marks like Efan Ekoku - whoops, remember him? - Warren Barton, Garry Birtles etc).

Anyway, after Essien's assault on Ossie, the 'ex pro' on this occasion stated "....weeeeeeell, there was no intent there, it was just a 50/50 challenge really..."

Said 'ex-pro' was none other than Brian Marwood. BRIAN FUCKING MARWOOD!!! Well he would know all about that sort of challenge wouldn't he?? Bastard!

For the younger amongst us, Brian Marwood was responsible for a hideous assault on Adrian Heath during the 84-85 campaign(around December?), which ended Inchy's season. The fact that Andy Gray came in and we conquered the world that season is beside the point....
Dave Richman     Posted 13/11/2007 at 09:03:02   Comments (12)

Missing piece to the jigsaw

Looking at the Everton squad of players, there is one thing missing, a box to box midfield player, a player in the Roy Keane mould. Our midfield looks to light weight for the battles a head. I have heard that Moyes is looking at several midfield players including the overrated Kevin Nolan and always being linked with us, Stephen Appiah, who incidentally has been strongly linked with a move back to Italy with Juventus. I have heard De Silva had a good loan spell, but does Moyes think he can cut it in the Premier League?
Peter Dwyer     Posted 13/11/2007 at 09:11:45   Comments (19)

Arteta or Cahill? Who gives the greater impact in games?

I have been pondering for a while on who is the better player for Everton. Or rather which player can make a more significant impact when they are playing. Is it Arteta or Cahill?

I know that both of them have different styles of play. Arteta has the dribbling skills and ability to make that one pass to split the oppositiondefence. And Cahill has the knack of being in the right place at the right time. Everton cannot do without either of them in the team as they are very important players. But impact on games?

My vote goes to Arteta......
Raid Ng     Posted 13/11/2007 at 03:50:36   Comments (23)

Best team since Kendall?

There have been quite a few people complaining about the quality of our side this season so I thought I'd list a few reasons why I think they are wrong.

Tim Howard is twice the player of Wright, I personally rank him ahead of the likes of Lehmann, Van der Sar and of course Paul Robinson. His performances in the last month prove my point. Also we have two good young goalkeepers in the form of Turner and Ruddy coming through, then there's Wessels who seems to have become the forgotten man since Howard returned, he also looks like a bargain.

Then there's our defense which has got to be the best since Royle managed us or maybe even since the mid-80s. Having players like Baines and Neville (who desperately needs to move to right-back again) as full-backs, then Lescott and Yobo in the centre with Stubbsy coming in when we need him.

Forgive me if I'm wrong but I don't really class Pienaar, Cahill and the vastly underrated Lee Carsley a makeshift centre midfield as has been mentioned in a previous post, add Arteta to the equation I see a damn good midfield... Also we've got others like Mad Dog. However, I do think we should perhaps invest in a good left winger to partner Arteta. Personally I'd love to see Morten Gamst Pedersen strutting his stuff on our hallowed turf.

Then there's our strikers, no question of the quality of Yak and Anichebe and the 3 little men (AJ, McFadden, Vaughan) ? I'd say we're safe in that department, wouldn't you?

I hope this has helped some of you that things could be alot worse so let's get behind the team and Moyesy and cheer our way to victory home and away.
Rob Jones     Posted 13/11/2007 at 00:15:35   Comments (13)

Best Striker?

Now, since each striker we have at our disposal is in decent form, I have been puzzling to see who our best striker is:

Yakubu - Has the best goal scoring ability, incredible strength, brilliant finishing... but work rate is sometimes questionable.

Andy Johnson - Has undoubted class in him considering he's in the England squad consistently. Incredible work-rate, extradonairy pace but don't think he's scored enough for us this season.

James McFadden - The most inconsistent of the lot... but on his day, he is absolutely lethal, look at the Metalist game, his amazing goal at Charlton and does it consistently for Scotland. But again.. inconsistent.. doesn't show his great form often enough.

Victor Anichebe - the "New Drogba" apparently, according to the newspapers. His strength is phenonemal, and his all round play is impressive. Has tremendous potential.

James Vaughan - Quite similar to Victor except much quicker. Can't think of any weaknesses of him except maybe inexperience.. which will definitely dissappear in the future. Potential very, very good indeed.

Now, an overview of all the strikers. Maybe they were slightly inaccurate.. but that's my opinion of them. If I had to choose now.. it would probably be Vaughan.. just because his all round play is better than the other four.
Ben Jones     Posted 12/11/2007 at 22:48:06   Comments (22)

In the eye of the beholder

Listening to Blues talking about Tim's last-gasp equaliser has made my day, some of the youngsters even describe it as the best ever Everton goal ? well it probably is to them.

I was wondering which goal would be generally regarded by Evertonians as our best ever, has there ever been a poll? My own personal favourite was scored by Sharpie - no not that one... It was against Spurs, I think it was 1983, not sure of the date, but will never forget the goal. He was standing to the right of the box, Park End / Enclosure when the ball dropped to him, he leaned really hard to the left and struck the most unihibited right foot volley past Clemence and into the far corner, the side netting sprung out so far I thought it had to break. Clemence was a red, but even the biggest blue would admit he was some keeper, I loved his honesty when a telly pundit asked him later, "Did you nearly save it? " a startled Clemence replied " I nearly saw it!"
Dave Wilson     Posted 12/11/2007 at 19:06:23   Comments (24)

Cometh The Hour, Cometh The Men?

You get the feeling that should Tim Cahill have chosen another sport during his childhood in Australia, be it cricket, Aussie rules or rugby, he would have excelled at all of them.

You see Tim is undoubtably one of lifes 'winners' when it comes to sport.

You recognise them in all walks of life, sheer guts and determination and an absolute belief that whatever life throws at them in the way of adversity, they will overcome it.

By design or otherwise, Moyes has assembled a team of very strong characters (albeit it has taken five years to do so).

For example, the current Everton side has Howard, Lescott, Stubbs, Carsley, Cahill, Neville to name six who really are not just seasoned pros, but guys who lead by example.

I don't think you are likely to see any of them in a tabloid headlines boozed up at 3am in the morning falling out of a nightclub.

It's this spirit or backbone in the team which has helped us through a gruelling fixture list of late.

By comparison, the great eighties side had Southall, Ratcliffe, Sharp, Reid, and Gray who were the backbone of the side and resolute characters to boot.

I believe Everton and Moyes now stand on the threshold of becoming a very, very, good side.

We are I believe, probably three players short of seriously challenging for a regular 'top four' slot.

It's been well documented, but a right full back, dominant ball playing mid-fielder, and a winger with genuine pace would fit the bill, whether we can bring them on board this season remains doubtful, but the signing on long term contracts of Arteta, Cahill etc will only help and stabilise the current squad.

However, it is absolutely important we move forward as a football club and don't settle for the staus quo.

Watch this space.
Steve  Hogan     Posted 12/11/2007 at 17:04:01   Comments (1)

Oh, ye of little faith

Now we haven't got a game for a while it might be a good time to look back at the summer with a bit of perspective. Many Blues were criticising the early lack of transfer activity and were frustrated that we didn't get our targets, while some of us thought that it was right that Moyes believed his targets were right at a certain price but not at any cost. As of today do any of Koumas, Richardson, Nugent, Smith or even (dangerous ground I know) Fernandes look good for the price we would have had to pay to get them ?

Although, I personally think we paid over the odds for Yak, you've got to say our manager knew what he was doing overall. Haven't you?
Chris Dottie     Posted 12/11/2007 at 17:04:41   Comments (11)

International break just in time

Usually when you are on a good run of results you don't want anything to interrupt it. You just want every game to keep coming and ride your good form and yes, luck. But this time I don't think the internationals break could have come at a better time. We've been playing two games a week for a while now and it must be taking a toll on some of the players. Actually we know it has, as Arteta missed yesterday's match and Baines has been out for a couple of weeks now. But now it is time for some much deserved rest.

It has been a very good run of results for us since the derby fiasco, and credit must be given to the team and Moyes for the way they responded after that defeat. In years past we very well could have seen a big down turn in our season following that match, but the players came out firing and won 5 on the trot. Now it's too bad that only 2 of those wins were in the league, but 2 important European matches were thrown in there. And then to battle hard and ride our luck at times yesterday to keep us unbeaten was fantastic. We had no Arteta, no Baines, no Vaughan, no AJ, but we got the late goal and took a point from Stamford Bridge. That's nothing to scoff at these days.

So we go into the usually dreaded international break riding a 6-match unbeaten streak that included a trip to an in-form Chelsea. Now we have 2 weeks to get Arteta, Vaughan, Baines and AJ fit again, and we get to give Cahill some rest. I know he will be going to Australia but I don't think he'll be playing much over there. He'll need his rest badly. Gravesen will be able to get some more fitness and hopefully get more involved in the first team. And we come out of this break with winnable game against Sunderland.

I know that we have quite a few players on international duty, but the work they are doing there will seem easy compared to the amount they have been playing for us over the past 3-4 weeks. Lets just hope for an easy, injury free break and a healthy squad to return in two weeks time.
David  Barks     Posted 12/11/2007 at 16:24:26   Comments (2)

Finch Farm

I live in Woolton but work in Chester so I pass Finch Farm nearly every day.

Today, I actually went up there to have a closer look. The site is huge and very impressive so it got me thinking, why didn't we build our new stadium here?

Finch Farm is in Halewood, which is in Liverpool (just) and has got a great infrastructure: Halewood train station, right on the Knowsley expressway for the north end fans and the Widnes/Runcorn expressway for fans coming from the South.

We had the money to build the complex, so surely it wouldn't have been that much more for a stadium instead. Failing that maybe Tesco would have been interested. The nearest supermarket is the new Morrisons in Speke so surely this is a prime development oppurtunity for a hypermarket either with Tesco or someone else.

For the sake of a new stadium, we could have made do with Bellefield for a few more years and avoided the contentious and emotive issue of moving outside of the city boundaries, which has us fans divided.
Brian Law     Posted 12/11/2007 at 15:49:30   Comments (16)

Tommy or not Tommy, that is the question?

I cannot understand why Tommy Gravesen has not featured much since his return from injury. Games such as Luton away and Chelsea away when we were missing the creative Arteta, we should have brought him in but instead opted for Neville who is neither creative nor a midfielder. Surely he should have played in those games.

Whilst you can say, he hasn't made that much of an impact (apart from Bolton away), the statistics for Tommy's apperances actually make interesting reading. See below:-

Bolton (a)
Score when he came on: 1-1
Final score: 2-1 win

Luton (a)
Score when he came on: 0-0
Final score: 1-0 win

Larissa (h)
Score when came on: 2-0
Final Score: 3-1 win

Birmingham (h)
Score when came on: 1-1
Final Score: 3.1 win

Chelsea (a)
Score when came on 1-0
Final Score: 1-1

Coincidence?
Brian Law     Posted 12/11/2007 at 15:33:09   Comments (14)

Super gooooal!!??

Sorry I was doing my bimonthly round trip to Lincoln & was unable to catch the game or highlights... Has anyone (besides EvertonTV ) got a link so I can see Timmy's goal? It's not been 'Tubed' yet :(
Wayne McNee     Posted 12/11/2007 at 14:19:39   Comments (16)

News from the Netherlands

Just been talking to a colleague and Dutch TV have just reported that Zenit St. Petersburg have just become the first non-Moscow club to win the league in 20 years. Dick Advocaat is the manager which explains why it is on Dutch news but not a mention even on BBC.co.uk.

Second, one of the debates on the football yesterday was the rise of Roda JC and how they are not the prettiest team to play against. In fact they are a bunch of thugs. Seems like their manager has imposed his influence, a guy called Raymond Atteveld! He was never a dirty player for us... was he?
Phil Roberts     Posted 12/11/2007 at 13:05:14   Comments (9)

Defensive Frailties

On the back of 6 excellent results (I count a point at Stamford Bridge as an excellent result), it seems somewhat churlish to look at any negative aspects of Everton's play. But what does worry me is the number of goals they are conceding from corners. To date I can recall:

  • Ledley King (Spurs A) ? won so no impact.
  • Vidic (Man Utd H) ? lost; minus 1 point at least.
  • Capo (Birmingham H) won so no impact.
  • Drogba (Chelaea A) - drew - minus 2 points.
Add to this the throw-in at Reading which lost us the game and we are some 4 points down on where we could be. With Lescott, Stubbs and Yobo we have big defenders who should be dealing with such crosses but it looks like no work is done on this on the training pitch. A concern that I hope we rectify!
Steve Rimmer     Posted 12/11/2007 at 12:04:18   Comments (9)

Will the punishment fit the crime?

I've just been watching footage of the Italian 'football' weekend that I'm sure we all have seen (or heard of) I was just wondering about anyone's feelings about what punishment will be given out to the Italian FA? Just imagine if this scenario had been seen at Burtonwood Service Station between two sets of rival fans. Or indeed any other Service Station your care to mention throughout the UK.

I do feel that we are still tagged as a hooligan nation. The behaviour of the many travelling blues over in Germany and indeed any other English clubs the past week or so passed off with no mention of trouble. But, yet again, the problem seems to be a hell of a lot worse on the continent. Wether its racial abuse, violence on or off the terraces, I feel that the European clubs get off more lightly. Italian football is as bent/corrupt (fill in your own words here) Any thoughts????
Matt Kay     Posted 12/11/2007 at 11:13:09   Comments (7)

Progress.....

Despite currently sitting 9th in the table, the last month in the life of Everton has been great.

Even at the start of this week I was looking at the 2 fixtures of Nuremburg and Chelsea away with some trepidation. A run of good results against, at best, average opposition was running headlong into what could have been a brick wall. We haven't faired too well this season against many decent sides. On the back of the win in Nuremburg, I was hopeful of putting up a fight at the Bridge, but little expected to take much from the game. And my feeling appeared to be vindicated when I saw that Drogba had bagged in the 70th.

This brings me to my 2 points; first of all, at any point up to now, would we have held out hope of a point against Chelsea with Arteta, Johnson and our best left-back out of the side? I for one would have to say no. I think that gives a fair indication of the improvement of the squad overall since the end of last season.

Second point is that we are on a great run and we all know in our blue hearts that there will be hiccups, that we can't perform to this level for a full season, even though I want to believe that we can. But we've got ourselves into that wonderful habit of going the full 90 + stoppage time and rescuing points when time seems to have run out on us. That breeds confidence, a never-say-die attitude and even if we suffer a few hiccups in the coming weeks, we will still have the belief that we can get something out of a game when it is slipping away from us.

Credit has to go to Moyes, despite a fairly bumpy start he has turned us into a side with a real winning mentality. I know it's only been short term and I'm trying not to get carried away, but it is really reminiscent of the 2004-05 season. And we have Johnson, Vaughan, Baines and (maybe) Gravesen to get back to match fitness and boost the squad.

We may well need that mentality, with one hell of a run of fixtures in December. Sunderland at home and Portsmouth away are winnable and less than 4 points would be disappointing. Then Zenit at home and the opportunity to keep our 100% record and tie up the UEFA group early (was anyone expecting that after 2005 and Metalist this year?) Then Fulham at home before a run of West Ham twice, Alkmaar then Man Utd all away in 11 days. I think it's safe to say that is going to be the acid test. If we can come through that period with a reasonable set of results, it's going to be a happy, happy Christmas and a New Year that all Blues will be looking forward to.

Keep it up boys and COYB!
Richard Parker     Posted 12/11/2007 at 05:57:25   Comments (8)

Spoilers!

Lyndon reported the team won a point "that most neutral observers would say they probably didn't deserve". What are we like? Wish we had played like Man City. Then Sky, BBC et al would be well pleased.
Phil  Bellis     Posted 12/11/2007 at 01:08:10   Comments (18)

Time to cash in...

Doing well in all competitions, plans afoot for a new stadium and financial outlook bright. So just the time to cash in, thinks Blue Bill. "Maybe I can turn a £70M profit like my good friend David Dein has done at Arsenal."

Don't tell me he's toting the Club around because "someone else could take it on to the next level." It's all about filling his arse pocket, that's why he's on MotD and filling pages in The Daily Express.

Unlike most Evertonians, I've never clamoured for a sell out because I'm mighty fearful of who we might finish up with. Mr Johnson casts a long shadow over Goodison for me.
Lawson  Tremayne     Posted 11/11/2007 at 23:31:11   Comments (10)

Could this be it?

Six games unbeaten in all competitions. Ten goals scored in those six games. Football that flows, football that is beautiful, football that is exactly what Evertonians have longed for since 1988. Could this be our chance, finally, after almost twenty painful years?

I have often wondered whether I was the one who cursed our club, simply by being born, in 1988. Since the day I was born Everton have won only a single, solitary trophy, and even that in a season where relegation threatened. I have experienced low point after low point as an Evertonian, until now the greatest, most important moment being the 3-2 victory over Wimbledon on the last day of the 1993-94 season. Tears rolled down my dad's face when we went two down that day; he cried more when the final whistle blew and we had survived. I saw then what it meant to support Everton Football Club.

Today, when Tim Cahill scored in the 89th minute, it was a great feeling, but it's just a point. We actually dropped a place in the Premier League table this afternoon. Does that matter? I now see an Everton team that is on a mission. David Moyes has his faults, but the man has brought our beloved club from the brink of relegation to European football, to matching the league?s top teams, to players like Cahill and Lescott and Arteta, in just five years. We are financially healthy, a new stadium is on the horizon; the players and the management and the fans believe that the club can soon be great once again.

So this could indeed be the time when Everton FC emerges to become a regular contender for the top six, top four and even in a few years the Premier League title itself. This could be the time when Everton return to European competitions with resolve, the ability to compete and to succeed. It could all go wrong, of course, and in many ways that would be typical of the post-1988 Everton FC that I have grown up with ? but now, for the first time in my life, I believe that it won?t go wrong.

< With a few more key signings, an increase in revenue from a new ground/European competition, Everton can once again be among the biggest and most successful football clubs in the world. ?In every land and continent, wherever football?s known, we?ll play the game that?s Everton and bring the honours home!?
Louis Huglin     Posted 11/11/2007 at 19:38:19   Comments (9)

We shall not be moved.......

What a great result in all the circumstances: the game in Germany on Thursday, away to a 'Big 3' team (who played on Tuesday), no Mikky etc.

Glad to see Moyes's positive half-time changes were rewarded albeit belatedly and what a crackin overhead kick by Tim, who was nearly out on his feet with tiredness. Unstoppable. After conceding a soft goal from the corner it was an excellent response.

This team has serious character and with character like this, methinks we're in for some exciting times this season. COYB !!!!!
Conor Feeney     Posted 11/11/2007 at 16:06:05   Comments (13)

Hibbert !!!!!!!!!!

Just heard he's playing Hibbert today - what the Fuck??? Is Moyes the only person at our club that thinks this lad can play football??? He is utter garbage, one step forward one step backward - Hibbert in the team and Neville in midfield. This isn't a team set up to play football or try to win a game, its a team set up to play hoofball and hope for one chance.

Nil satis .......???
Jim Hourigan     Posted 11/11/2007 at 13:30:43   Comments (26)

Everton vs Chelsea

Hibbert at right-back and Neville at centre-mid; No Arteta.

Damn I am really worried about today's game now, I really wish Jags got the nod over Hibbert. Let's hope Osman and Pienaar have good games as we need them more than ever with no Arteta.
Stuart Mitchell     Posted 11/11/2007 at 13:33:08   Comments (40)

Best attack in the prem??

A recent article was posted on the Everton website saying that we have the best in strike force in the prem. I think that we have a really good strike force so I have made comparisons to the big 4 plus Tottenham (only team out side the big 4 that has more than 3 quality strikers) so this is what i came up with:

Arsenal: Van Persie v McFadden... 1-0 to Arsenal
Abedayor v Yakubu... I think the yaks wins this 1-1
Johnson v Eduardo... 2-1 to the toffees
Bendtner v Vaughan... even gunners would want jimmy 3-1
Only Anichebe and Walcott left... can't really compare.... Everton better than Arsenal

Chelsea:
Drogba v Johnson... sorry AJ, 1-0 chelski
Shevchenko - Yakubu... yakity yak 1-1
Pizzaro v McFadden... close but Jimmy Mac is underrated 2-1
Kalou v Anichebe... battle of the Africans Even Steven 2-2
Vaughany a loner... Everton win

I don't want to write too much so you can do the others yourself...
Jack  Daou     Posted 11/11/2007 at 06:21:44   Comments (4)

Preliminary draught

Seems to me that Moyes took a gamble with Arteta at Nuremburg and it paid off. His overall play was excellent, using the head to save the groin. But the corners and free kicks have been universally panned as poor, this is all down to the groin strain, been there done that, got the empty Voltarin packet.

Step up Tommy Gravesen!! With 5 out of 5 wins against opposition of variously average quality, this next game is a measure of how far we have come and have got go.

Yes! I would take Manny back, after all everybody deserves a 2nd chance and cutting off your nose to spite your face was never the best response. We are in somewhat of a buyers market now. Come on Manny, you know it makes sense.

By some miracle my glass is now changed from half-empty to half-full and the actual taste has improved in ratio with the shrinking of the hoofball content, from cats piss to a nice German beer, soon it will hopefully turn into the holy grail of blues of a certain age... Draught Bass.
Derek Thomas     Posted 11/11/2007 at 05:30:42   Comments (4)

How close are we?

How close are we to being a solid top six club? Three players:

1.A first class right back
2.A replacement for the pugnacious and redoubtable Carsley.
3. A central midfield playmaker.

Not much when you think about it. In fact, we may even be pushing for the top four. When you look at the big spenders who have crashed this season ? you have to give Moyes his due.

As for Chelsea tomorrow ? it all depends who is available for EFC ? but with the right players I predict an EFC draw or possibly a win. I am looking forward to the match.
Andrew Gaule     Posted 11/11/2007 at 04:43:58   Comments (6)

Safe Hands

During this time when we are all feeling so good to see the Club and Team progressing nicely, it's worth remembering how it's been achieved.

We only have to look at so many clubs who have sold their soul to the foreign adventure capitalists. Besides putting their clubs in unparalleled debt, most of them are lucky to have an English speaking player. In all of this we can hold our heads high. Fair enough, some clubs fans protested. Not like the other lot who didn't raise a whisper as their club was being hawked around like a prostitute to the Tieyervesttights and the Arabs before finally settling for our make-a-quick-buck friends from across the pond.

While we have steadily progressed, with out bankrupting the club and at the same time have not only managed to keep a British identity but also a scouse one. If a club's not happy behind the scenes it can never progress. The one man we needed to be strong through out these unprecedented times of change, who wouldn't put the almighty dollar above the love he has for his club, was our scouse chairman Bill Kenwright. The man who appointed Davey Moyes, the man who's made money available for players, without doing a Risdale.

Let's forget "Billy Liar" ? it's Long Live King Bill!
Gary Rimmer     Posted 10/11/2007 at 17:33:34   Comments (10)

The best supporters I know!

I thought that travelling to The Ukraine was going to be hard to beat as far as a spectacle, location and atmosphere... how wrong I was. Thank you Everton Travel once again. (Anthony, you did us proud lad)

Our travelling fans must be amongst the most loyal and passionate in the world. Nuremberg was packed with blues, I hope our players could hear us in the city centre.

Special mention to my new nine mates!!! See you all soon.
Dom Eaton     Posted 10/11/2007 at 12:40:45   Comments (7)

Here we go again - Manny Fernandes

Apparently he's been kicked out of the squad at Valencia by new manager Koeman. Sign him on loan for the rest of the season in January?
Erik Dols     Posted 10/11/2007 at 11:31:06   Comments (38)

Our songs

Now I am not one to moan but just back from Germany and it was superb, but our songs are rubbish. When are we going to stop singing about Duncan Ferguson and Barry Horne? Good servants but not in the same league as some of our greats. I can't sing but someone out there must be able to come up with some better songs than the ones we are belting out now.
John Eligh     Posted 10/11/2007 at 10:06:46   Comments (13)

Constructing a side with a style that fans enjoy to watch

I've recently come across this, in parts fascinating, series of interviews with David Moyes on the League Managers' website

I find it interesting to note the changes since he first arrived e.g. how he wanted to construct a side that fans will enjoy the style of football. Here's hoping we are now finally getting there 6 years on!
Michael Hunt     Posted 10/11/2007 at 07:35:53   Comments (0)

Qualification for the knockout stage


Steve Syder     Posted 10/11/2007 at 03:37:26   Comments (20)

?Joker? in the pack?

Just read the sports reports in two German papers re the game on Thursday. Both make reference to the Everton supporters being well-natured and turning the city blue. They both praised the lack of the anticipated Anglo-German hatred.

Most amusing is the headlines "British Joker Imposes Club"? Yes they both use the term "Joker" when referring to Victor...insult you may think?... no not at all... "joker" translates as "wildcard" in German. One paper even starts "Everton without Scotland Super talent - James MacFadden"!....lol. So Victor is our Joker in the pack?!.... who's laughin now?
Ian Martin     Posted 10/11/2007 at 00:37:45   Comments (6)

Tim Howard

In all the praise that seems to be going round various players at the moment, I thought it overdue that Tim Howard got a mention. Since we signed him, he has been outstanding and has really grown into one of the best keepers in the Premier League.

Nigel Martyn apart, since Big Nev we've seen a number of nervous-looking keepers between the sticks but we actually look really strong there at the moment. Even Wessels, who a few years back would have looked quite solid compared to what we have, is nowhere near Howard.

Seems to command his box very well, organising defenders, taking crosses and being a great shot stopper. There has been the odd goal where people may wonder if he could have done better but all keepers have them.
Aigburth  Blue     Posted 09/11/2007 at 23:38:22   Comments (6)

Moyes, please follow the Yoda Principle

Yoda says, ''Do or do not, there is no try''! Here is a largely very good and positive article from Moyes re: targeting the Uefa Cup Final and Champions League qualification.

I am very happy about this, much more encouraging than targeting 40 points or mid-table! However, as seen against Man Utd especially and others like Arsenal and Chelsea, I wish he could inspire a bit more confidence than saying we will 'try' to do well against them. To me, it hints at a little too much respect. Got to have a right good go and be aggressive for 95 minutes and not capitulate out of fear and respect for them.... Go for it Moyesy!

(I'm Bloody happy overall BTW, just would be ecstatic if we could turn over the 'big four' more often... and what better time to up our game than Chelsea at 'The Bridge' on Sunday!)
Michael Hunt     Posted 09/11/2007 at 23:02:24   Comments (4)

Everton Travel?

I might just be going a bit barmy but has anyone else noticed the link fron the OS to Everton Travel has gone? It was under Fan Services but I can find no trace at the moment? Their website had been down for several days but I had received emails from them last week regarding the Nuremberg game (no tickets, just emails).

Strange that, I wonder if there has been a falling out over the alleged missing 200 tickets between the Club and Everton Travel or is there some perfectly logical explanation? Is the link there and I just need new specs?
Lue  Glover     Posted 09/11/2007 at 22:27:32   Comments (1)

Have we found the secret to success?

Is it me or is playing European football mandatory for domestic 'success'? I really believe that Everton playing in Europe can only have a positive effect. For starters, the squad size is hugely important meaning Everton must keep their numbers up. The type of football played in Europe means our players are learning and getting better with experience ? passing the ball around till the opportunity presents itself can only help us play better football. I may be naive but playing in Europe has so far only been a positive and I wondered if anyone had any thoughts on Everton in Europe and the effects it has/will have?
David O'Brien     Posted 09/11/2007 at 18:44:08   Comments (0)

James Vaughan

I really worry about this boy, a fantastic talent, but he did not travel to Germany apparently because of a thigh strain. Moyes was obviously protecting him it seems, but I have worrying feelings that we may have another Gascoigne here, richly talented, but injury prone, injuries heal slower the older you get, Just hope he is over the worst.
Will Bruce     Posted 09/11/2007 at 17:29:10   Comments (6)

Are we on the telly?

After the game on Thursday, five gave out their next round of televised games but we weren't one of the teams mentioned as our next Uefa cup game is a Wednesday rather than a Thursday. Was wondering if anyone knows if we are being televised and if so who is televising it?
Simon Rimmer     Posted 09/11/2007 at 17:24:29   Comments (4)

Victor Anichebe's European record

While bored at work, I've done some statistical research into Victor Anichebe in Europe:

v Metalist (h)- On for Yakubu after 65 mins, no goal
v Metalist (a)- On for Yakubu after 75 mins, goal after 87 mins
v Larissa (h)- On for McFadden after 64 mins, goal after 84 mins
v Nurnberg (a)- On for Yakubu after 74 mins, goal after 86 mins

Appearances: 4
Minutes on pitch (excluding stoppage time) - 82
Goals: 3l
Mins per goal: 27.33 recurring
Goals per appearance: 0.75
Goals per 90 mins on the pitch: 3.29

In conclusion, he's doing quite well.
Richard Porter     Posted 09/11/2007 at 16:02:57   Comments (4)

Pienaar

I see he is getting to the level we S'Effricans know he is capable of. I did mention in a previous post to give the lad time, and it seems to be paying off. Just as an aside, doesn't he remind you a tad of Arteta when he just got to GP? Had the talent, had the engine, but just had to adjust to the physicality of the PL.
Damascene Taylor     Posted 09/11/2007 at 15:01:17   Comments (23)

Fans

Nice of the BBC, Talksport etc. to come out today and mention how well behaved our fans were last night; before, during and after the game.

I am of course being sarcastic. As Lyndon pointed out yesterday, they are quick to tar us with the RS brush but without any foundation for this; but not so quick to be complementary when found to be wrong.

Of course I didn't expect it to be any different but it still makes me mad.

For what it's worth, well done from me to the thousands who made the trip and did us proud; with their vocal support for the team and their role as ambassadors for our Club.
Steve Guy     Posted 09/11/2007 at 14:19:19   Comments (11)

Finch Farm

So things are looking up. Marching on in Europe and a good spell in the league. Chelsea on Sunday should be a good benchmark of where we are at in the grand scheme of things. Be typically competitive and make the opposition work for everything and we are on the right path. Roll over and look fatigued and perhaps we're being over optimistic.

We have definitely come along way since the days of Messrs Smith and Knox and in truth as long as we keep stability at the club I can only see things going in the same direction: up!

One thing I think will have a really positive effect at the club is the new training facility at Finch Farm and in particular having the Academy at the same site will only benefit us in the long run. Having the kids train with the senior squad will help them develop and bring them on. It's great that we've got so many players on the fringes of the full squad now and there are a few promising talents to look out for Kissock, Spencer, Jutkiewicz (already named in full team) and I think this will now just get better.

One thing, though, have I missed something or has the move away from Bellefield been very low key. I haven't seen too much (if any) publicity and there is only a handful of shots I can find on the net. Does anyone have any good links to have a look at the place?

Furthermore, are the club going to have an official opening (or again is that something I've missed) and invite the fans in to have a look around ? I think that would be a good bit of PR, something that Big Bill doesn't usually pass up!!! Anyway, any info on the site would be appreciated.

Looking forward to Sunday, a point would be very nice thank you very much. Whatever happens, it's exciting times at Everton again and let's hope things keep getting better. Moyes has apparently got some cash come January so let's hope for some acquisitions that will strengthen our already good squad.
Ed Casey     Posted 09/11/2007 at 11:56:38   Comments (5)

Anichebe and Vaughan

In Vaughan and Anichebe we have two of the best young strikers in the country, their goals-to-games ratios are very good and they both seem very hungry to play and work very hard. We have two great young strikers who we need to get behind and who need to be nurtured into the game, which Moyes is doing very well. We need to keep hold of these two as they have the potential to be very good.

I can see anichebe being used as an impact player in the last 15 minutes a lot more from now on, the way he shrugged off the challenge against Nurenburg to score his goal was amazing. Everton have once again provided evidence of a very succesful youth academy, we seem to produce brilliant strikers. Also Jose Baxter is a very good prospect.
Connor  Davies     Posted 09/11/2007 at 12:02:10   Comments (21)

Heads up, it's Krĝldrup!

Per Krĝldrup, it seems, has now mastered how to head the ball. Judging by this goal and another fine goal last night with his head in the demolition of Elfsborg, then it seems he has overcome his fear....!
Vick Stanley     Posted 09/11/2007 at 11:57:40   Comments (12)

29 November

Put that date in your diaries, because that is when the next round of Uefa Cup games is, and Everton could qualify for the last 32 without even playing!

Basically, if Nuremburg fail to beat Zenit St Petersburg away from home, and Larissa fail to beat AZ Alkmaar away from home then Everton are assured of qualifying for the next round.

If all else fails, then at least a draw in our next European match will assure us of qualifying for the next round.
Steve Flanagan     Posted 09/11/2007 at 11:55:45   Comments (19)

Rub of the Green

I may get shot down for this, so I'll start by congratulating the boys on an efficient job. It's been a while since I saw an Everton game where I didn't have a gut feeling that we were moments away from a capitulation. We were far more mature and patient in our possesion than usual. And while I fear that when we come across sterner opposition we may run out of ideas and resort to hoofball, it was a great performance by everyone.

Some people picked up on Arteta's set piece delivery being poor, but I think on a couple of occassions when his crosses were low he was actually trying something different, trying to zip it into feet as opposed to in the air where Pienaar and Osman aren't at their best (though Cahill and Lescott are). Then again maybe I'm just making excuses for the darling Arteta and his delivery was poor. However he took his penalty brilliantly, and was fantastic on the ball.

He had a great spell in the game where he won about five free-kicks in the space of a few minutes, while most of them were valid, did anyone notice how incensed the German crowd were that nearly every decision was going our way?

At the end Arteta went all the way up to the ref (the Apanish ref) and shook his hand.

Obviously the point i'm trying to make is that this has shades of the travesty in the derby... obviously it is not as extreme, Arteta was certainly good for all his free kicks he won, but then again normally you would excpect him to not get a couple of them. And no Everton player tried to get anyone sent off, or dived, or judo threw anyone. But I'm sure there may be a few Nurnberg fans lambasting the referee's performance at certain points.

Actually I'm not sure if I have made any real point here, more of an observation. Anyway, COYB.
Eddie Harrison     Posted 09/11/2007 at 10:54:43   Comments (5)

Steve Peanuts....

We have got to sign this lad... of late he's really showing what he's made of. He never shirks out of tackles, runs all day, and has fantastic technical ability.

Let's make it known to the Board and to Stephen Piennar himself on Sunday at Chelsea how much we want him to stay.
Paul Trafford     Posted 09/11/2007 at 11:11:04   Comments (4)

Still no Ken !!!

Where's Ken, seriously starting to get worried now. Five wins on the bounce and he's dissapeared. I think me and Lou ought to start thinking about piutting some posters around town.

Anyone know anything ?
Kevin Bennett     Posted 09/11/2007 at 10:18:16   Comments (2)

Arteta song

I've noticed that over the last few weeks a new song has emerged about Mikel Arteta - to the tune of 'The Sting'. Does anyone know the words?
Matt Geraghty     Posted 09/11/2007 at 10:02:30   Comments (2)

Club Crest last night

Did anyone else notice the club bagde on the boys shirts last night? What did the words below the badge read? Were they special Euro shirts?

On a second but related issue, England Cricket team stitch on the kit of the players the number they are in the representation list (e.g for arguments sake if Mike Atherton was the 503 person to play for England his jumper and shirt have the number 503 sewn onto them). Could we not adopt such a practise at Everton? i think it would let the players know how special it is to play for Everton imagine knowing that only 600 other people had pulled on the famous jersey. Or would the Premier League not permit it?
Gary Cummins     Posted 09/11/2007 at 09:31:19   Comments (0)

Knockout stage qualification

Moyes has said it was a great performance from us and he HOPES we qualify. As far as I can work out Everton have definitely qualified.

There are ten games in the group, which means a maximum of 30 points are up for grabs if every game is won. But AZ and Zenit drew, so there is a maximum of 28 points up for grabs.

If Everton already have 6 points, there are only 22 points left for other four sides. 22 divided by four is an average of 5 and a half. Therefore Everton will definitely finish in the top three and qualify for the knockout rounds.
Simon Matthews     Posted 09/11/2007 at 09:02:22   Comments (4)

Fill me in!!!

The joy of last night's result is a little dimmed by the fact that, for the second time in this campaign work commitments meant I couldn't get there.

We got some wonderful posts after the Metalist game, so come on you guys who where out there, you can sleep any time... I wanna know all about it!
Dave Wilson     Posted 09/11/2007 at 05:31:26   Comments (15)

Resurgence

Not only a great result tonight but we've scored 11 goals in the last 5 games. Quite some difference from the 1-0, 4-5-1 scrape-a-win merchants of a couple of years ago. I'm hoping there is more of the same to come and that the last few years under Moyes really have just been a transition from years of mediocrity to establishing us back where we belong. Anichebe is looking like a great player, top finish tonight.

Only one minor point ? I wish the games weren't on in the bloody afternoon mid-week while I'm at work!

How comfortable we looked compared to our last European adventure. Just hope we're not peaking too early and we keep it going until the cup's in the cabinet.

I could possibly be right now the most overall content I've been with an Everton side in living memory (I'm 29). Too young to remember the 80s that well and 95 was just a blip. Get Pienaar signed!
Dan Parker     Posted 09/11/2007 at 02:20:09   Comments (5)

Fitness and commitment, the Everton way!

Well tonight was bloody brilliant! Anichebe continues to make a huge impression from the bench in Europe. We are sitting on top of Group A, with maximum points!

Not pretty at times tonight, but it was what I would consider a solid professional performance away from home in European competition (Light years ahead of the panicky crap that was played against Kharkiv in either leg!). We were rarely troubled (bar Lescott's error) and had quite a lot of dangerous attacks, without leaving ourselves open to counter attack.

I think we showed endevour and the will to win, but also an intelligence in our defence, covering for those attacking and chasing back when beaten on the ball. Something definitely missing during our more naive recent European ties. Also when we do get the ball down and pass we have the skill to play some nice football. As this continues I hope to see less of the hoofball.

This season, I have been very impressed throughout our European campaign at our fitness levels. I feel that it has been very important to our progress thus far. It is also starting to show in the league and domestic cups as we are scoring many goals at the end of games.

David Moyes should be given credit for the level of fitness and commitment he demands from the team. It is this desire that has helped us to our 5th win in a row. The criticism he recieved about trying to change the work ethic of Yakubu were strange. Moyes always asks commitment of his players, and why shouldn't he? Especially one that cost £11million (not to mention the wages!)

The return of Tim Cahill, a player that literally oozes passion and competitive edge has greatly highlighted how much this part of the game matters, especially against the, what I would consider, lesser opposition that we have faced recently. With his return we have seen balance to the team, and it is no co-incidence that players like Pienaar and Yakubu have begun to settle in better. Indeed, as Yakubu is finding his feet his work ethic, hold up play and general attitude are all improving.

I feel the challenge of Chelsea at the weekend is a different kettle of fish. However, Moyes can draw on some of the same strategies that were implemented tonight. If the same intelligence is used in how we plan our attacking play we could give them a good game. With fitness and desire a key after both teams playing in europe, I hope that our balance and new found confidence will help us raise our game once again.

Come on you blues! Let s keep this great run up!
Gareth  Cooper     Posted 08/11/2007 at 23:37:02   Comments (20)

Happy, happy, joy, joy....

You little bloody beauty!

Absolutely fantastic result!
Jarrod  Prosser     Posted 08/11/2007 at 22:02:24   Comments (39)

It's not the leaving of Liverpool.....

The Club`s publicity blurb on the completion of the Finch Farm training Complex makes much of the fact that the facility is in the District of Knowsley, soon to be home to our fabulous new stadium. No doubt this revelation will be siezed upon by the Luddites as yet another indication that the Board has no concern for the traditions of the Club. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to be able to discuss the issue with our Chairman at a meeting of the Arts Council and he stressed how much he saw himself as the custodian of all that was sacred to the Everton faithful. He was at pains to point out that all the track and field events in the 2012 Olympics will take place in a stadium situated in the District of Stratford but just because this is outside The City of London there can be no question of them not being the LONDON GAMES.

It seemed to me that this illustration summed up perfectly how important it is to see the wider picture and to eschew the conservative, narrow vision which so typifies too many Evertonians on this (non)issue.
Sebastian St.Clare     Posted 08/11/2007 at 17:19:22   Comments (24)

Tonight's game on the internet?

Same old question, but who knows where I can watch the boys on the internet tonight?

Thanks in advance and COYB!
Erik Dols     Posted 08/11/2007 at 12:53:21   Comments (13)

Kick-off time?

I know it says 8:05pm kick-off, but is that German time or English time? The reason I ask is I need to know whether to wake up at 5am or 6am to watch the game. I would say it's a 8:05pm German time. (equating to 7:05pm in England).

Sorry, it just gets a little confusing with all the different time zones, daylight savings etc.
Nick  Veitch     Posted 08/11/2007 at 11:03:23   Comments (4)

Vaughan Injury!

So James Vaughan is injured again, surprise, surprise. No-one can question his undoubted ability and potentially he could be Everton's best striker but those injuries are a real problem.

Its been nearly 4 years since Vaughan burst onto the scene with a debut goal against Crystal Palace but in that time he's only started a paltry 7 games. His goals-per-game record is very good but how much longer are we going to excuse the fact that he's always injured?

As he gets older the injuries will take longer to recover. Are we ever going to see this guy play 10 games on the trot? I wonder how much we would get if we sold him?
Dutch Schaffaer     Posted 08/11/2007 at 08:16:51   Comments (24)

Just a thought

I know of a stadium that houses around 50,000 supporters, will become available over the next few years, is located well within the city of Liverpool, a stadium which the mighty Blues were once along time ago kicked out of.

Surely it is our right to reclaim it as OUR own. If it seems a little difficult to stomach ? and frankly I'm shocking myself writing this ? but we must explore all the possibilites that may stop us from leaving the city of Liverpool. Anyway just think of how those red noses will feel when their beloved Anfield is painted blue, serves over-priced, warm Chang beer and reverberates to the sound of Z cars and 50,000 + mad Evertonians. Has anyone got Bill Kenwrights phone number?
Mike  McCarthy     Posted 07/11/2007 at 20:22:35   Comments (37)

Arteta and Fernandes

I have heard many people talking about a picture of Arteta and Fernandes getting into Arteta's car in town, does anyone have the link to this picture?
John Murphy     Posted 07/11/2007 at 19:39:11   Comments (19)

Who can voice the fans concerns?

With the recent ticketing fiascos, and groans about marketing, I would have thought there may have been an ?official? independent body for Everton supporters (i.e. not Evertonia run by EFC) to represent all the fans and voice their concerns and maybe have some input in certain issues. A group who can really speak to the big wigs at EFC and ask (nay, demand) an explanation for the off the pitch actions which have put so many people out.

At the moment the club seem to issue a press release that states the obvious (5,000 tickets have gone missing, UEFA have stopped Nuremberg selling tickets directly to Everton fans), or just ignore the issues completely / bury their heads in the sand.

Is there no voice of the fans. At match days we are all to busy supporting the players than to start chants of ?Where the fuck are our tickets?!? etc..

I see on ToffeeWeb there is mention about an Everton Independent Supporters Association, but the page was last updated in 2000! Other clubs appear to have such groups (e.g. Independent Manchester United Supporters Association who have been vocal in issues such as standing and the Glazer takeover).

Can anyone shed any light on this? Or does the campaign start here? I for one am fed up at the club not being held accountable for its actions.
John-Paul Foster     Posted 07/11/2007 at 18:34:44   Comments (10)

Who's your captain?

It seems many visitors these days don't want Phil Neville to be our captain. Someone suggested Lee Carsley the other day. I'm curious whom ToffeeWeb readers would like to see be our captain? I'd like to see Arteta.
Carlos Alberto     Posted 07/11/2007 at 17:50:02   Comments (29)

Final Piece of the jigsaw?

From David Moyes's most recent comments about his diminutive midfield, it would suggest that he clearly views this area of the team as one that requires strengthening. In looking at what is coming through the academy, Kissock is probably the only midfielder with a chance of making the step up; however, questions have already been raised about his stature and physical presence.

Carsley, although continuing to perform admirably, is getting no younger; Gravesen is probably also a stop-gap in real terms, and evidently there is money in the transfer kitty left over from the summer, with Moyes also reiterating that cash will be made available.

Speculation has continued around the red-herring Riquelme transfer with his continuing non-selection for Villarreal this season and the collapse of his move to Atletico Madrid. It will be interesting to see who Moyes moves for in January or next season; he tried hard for both Fernades and Porto's Lucho so he clearly views a player with skill, physical presence and athleticism as a requirement.

A player in the mould and with the experience of Stefan Frings would also be an ideal candidate. One thing's for sure: the next signing will be crucial to our continuing improvement... so let's hope DM gets it right.
Peter  Laing     Posted 07/11/2007 at 16:46:17   Comments (12)

A Moyes roasting!

Something I would love to see come into the game (although I doubt it could ever happen) would be to have 'half time cam' so when you press the red button on your remote, you have the option of seeing and hearing what the manager is saying to your team.

I mention this because I've always wondered just what does our manager say to the lads at half time and full time? If one was to believe Rooney's book (I wouldn't read it, a mate told me about it) David Moyes is vicious and aggressive with the lads if we're losing or have lost. I doubt that even approaches the truth but if anyone knows how Moyes addresses the team I'd love to know more.
Neil Styles     Posted 07/11/2007 at 16:00:36   Comments (8)

Yakubu

Read an article where Moyes is suggesting that Yakubu is winning over the doubters. I have never doubted Yakubu's credentials, his goal-scoring recored speaks for itself. Even when he looked out of sorts I never once thought he might not be very good. I feel his goals are coming because of the way we are starting to play.

Instead of launching long balls up to him and hoping for the best we are actually trying to use the midfield and create chances for the striker(s). As long as we keep trying to create goal scoring opportunities through the use of midfield he should score goals. On another note: I'm beginning to like the five man midfield although I'd prefer two up front but as long as we are winning why change it?
Trevor  Thompson     Posted 07/11/2007 at 15:52:34   Comments (7)

Van der Meyde

Based on reports he had a good game with the reserves. I want to see him back to first team football. Can znyone comment on his performance in that reserve game against Newcatle?
Jason  Siri     Posted 07/11/2007 at 02:20:37   Comments (40)

Rooney - Moyes lawsuit?

Whatever happened about that lawsuit David Moyes laid on Wayne Rooney and the Daily Mail?
Lee  Rogers     Posted 06/11/2007 at 23:12:19   Comments (2)

Football fans and where we all live

I read a really good post a few weeks ago, sorry I don't remember now who it was, but it stated how people with different opinions should not be classed as lesser fans. An excellent post indeed IMHO.

However, I feel there is another point that needs to be explored here and that is the constant references to other teams recruiting fans from parts of the country that are miles away from their particular club. This is always portrayed in a negative light and it is something I just don't understand.

For instance, it is often made light that the shite and Man Utd regularly attract fans from well outside their traditional catchment areas and these posts often contain an undertone of superiority. My question is does where you live make you any more of a football fan? Does it make you anymore or less a fan of your team.?

My own situation has me living in West Cornwall. Our nearest professional football team is Plymouth Argyle, a 2 hour drive away on a good day. Most of the people in our area support Argyle. However, not everybody does. We have our quota of Shite, Utd, Arsenal, Chelsea fans etc but the biggest supported team in my local area (Argyle aside) is Everton! In fact in nearly every area I have lived I have found many of these pockets of blues and the club is currently attracting fans from around the world.

So my question is because we are not scousers are we a lesser breed of Everton fan? Because a Man u fan is not from Manchester does that make them any less of a fan? Is it a bad thing that the Everton fan base is increasing from places other then Liverpool? The answer has to be no on all fronts. Yes there are a minority who just support whoever is top of the league but most of these supporters genuinely love their club. I know I do. I often get asked why I support Everton. I don't know I just do! I've managed to convert my wife (a past football hater) into an Evertonian (helped in no small part by the signings of Tim Cahill and Mikky)

My point is that someone who lives in Cornwall is just as much an Evertonian as someone who lives in Liverpool as is someone who lives in London a Man U fan. It's what goes on in our heads that matters not where we live or where we are from. I am Cornish and very proud of it as I am sure a scouser is very proud of living in Liverpool. That is not a bad thing but being trying to make out being a more superior fan than someone who is from elsewhere is a bad thing IMHO. If people want to support the shite let them, and by all means take the piss, but not because of where they live. Are we not being hypocritical if we do?
Tris Allerton     Posted 06/11/2007 at 19:46:38   Comments (59)

Nurnberg game

The ticket situation is bad but I think the reaction is completely ridiculous. The tickets were sold and travel and accomodation has been bought also; they were cancelled on the premise of "high risk" and hooliganism.

I can imagine that most of these people are going to turn up now anyway and I think the chances of something happening now are far greater ? but still have faith in my fellow Toffees that nothing of note will.

We have the old Beeb basically saying the Toffee fans are going to riot and other outlets rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect. Surely a more sensible resolution would have been to let the fans use their tickets and fine Nurnberg or get them to pay the cost for the extra security.

This just makes us Evertonians look bad ? or is being used to make us look bad by certain branches of the media ? rather than it being a mistake of Nurnberg's and this is the reason for the "high risk", not Toffee fans.
Brian  Reidy     Posted 06/11/2007 at 19:18:46   Comments (18)

Words to Z-Cars

Me auld mate Tommy used to frequent EFC and LFC games in his day he told me the Evertonians used to sing a song to the tune of Z-Cars nothing to do with Johnny Todd. Auld Tommy said it started somewhere along the lines "Oh to see the royal blue jerseys..." Anybody have any ideas or info on this?
Ste Riley     Posted 06/11/2007 at 17:54:04   Comments (0)

Flair players

If we played a team of flair players like Da silva,McFadden, Arteta, Pienaar, AVDM, combined with solid players like Stubbs, Carsley, Osman, Yakubu, Johnson, would this be considered as rash, or should we take the plunge like United did many years ago, like Arsenal do every week, and go for it?

We all watch international football on the tele, they all seem to play with sooo much more flair and exitement than us, yet we are considered the best league in the world... Sorry, don't agree; maybe in Europe, although you have to check out the Portuguese league ? brilliant! These teams are full of Ronaldos, Nani's, to mention but a few.

But I digress; are we, Everton, above trying to introduce some flair and talent into this league? We have the players, as mentioned above; are we gonna let Arsenal be the only ones to do this? I say Lets Go For It!
George Brooks     Posted 06/11/2007 at 16:51:49   Comments (2)

Tom Huddlestone

Just read that Huddlestone might become avaliable in January. I was just wondering what people's thoughts were to the mighty Blues signing him in January. I personally feel that he would be a very good addition.
Chris Rogers     Posted 06/11/2007 at 15:59:51   Comments (22)

Big midfielder

Moyes mentions in the article featured that we need to buy a physically big midfeilder because at the moment our tallest one is cahill at 5"10. What available midfielders are 6ft plus???? I'm gonna get shot down in flames but I would like Sissoko to be honest as long as he was £5m or less.
Dave Trudgeon     Posted 06/11/2007 at 15:50:24   Comments (19)

Villarreal

On the topic of ticket fiascos, who remembers Villarreal? Anyone recall the police having to attend to quell the angry crowd ? Sky telly turning up to a queue... In keeping with our history yet another ticket mess.

I love this club and have been a season ticket holder for 30 years but frankly the cluib do little to look after us on the ticket front. Wyness is in the news as I write bleating about the Government Minister criticising ridiculous salaries. Wyness should concentrate on sorting the poor admin at the club that lets fans down time and time again.
Gary Williams     Posted 06/11/2007 at 13:59:57   Comments (3)

Buyers not Sellers

Personally I am delighted that AJ has signed a new deal on two levels. The obvious one, is that I think he is a great player who adds greatly to the team with his goals and his all round contribution.

The perhaps less obvious level, is that it cements in my mind Everton as no longer a "selling" club. I remember Craig Short saying that Everton being such a Club had been part of his decision to leave. John Collins too had the same view, but was more vociferous about it. It was an outward sign of the many problems we had in the 90's and I hated the label and all it implied.

Everton were under no pressure to alter AJ's contract, as he was only in the second year of the previous five year deal. So it's great that they have nipped unsettling rumours in the bud well before January and added AJ's name to an increasingly long list of quality players committing themselves to a Club they clearly see as going places.

Without wishing to get too ahead of myself, I think (and hope) that we are now entering a phase of incrementally increasing the quality of the squad with astute purchases. It would be nice to see this continue in January, especially if we are well placed in both cups and the League: but I certainly expect more spending next Summer.

Lescott and Yobo next up for new deals I reckon.......
Steve Guy     Posted 06/11/2007 at 13:31:02   Comments (21)

Refreshing!

Just a quick note to say how refreshing it is to finally have a squad with not just numbers, but also quality.

Take our front five for example. Before the season started, all the talk was that Spurs may have the most potent forwads in the league. I would suggest (maybe with a degree of bias) that there are not many clubs in the league who can boast the quality, depth, numbers and variety that we have.

We finally have a Number Two keeper who we are confident can come in and do a job. This on top the list of young developing keepers we already have.

We have plenty of cover and options at the back. An example of this is the abilty to call on a player of the pedigree and quality of Valente for Thursday's game.

And in midfield we have a mix of footballers and battlers and of course Tim Cahill. Ok we may need a centre midfielder who can pass it, but all in all or midfield is looking pretty healthy.

Add to this the fact that our Under-18's are flying with some really exciting prospects coming through, such as Baxter and Rodwell, and I really have to say its a time to be optimistic and positive both on and off the pitch.

Come on the Blues!
Paul  Lenehan     Posted 06/11/2007 at 12:44:17   Comments (9)

AJ's new contract

Great news for us and hopefully it'll mean he comes back with a bang and starts netting straight away. Nice to think that all the crap rumours in the redtops, linking him to West Ham, will now be put to bed but I reckon the Sun and the People will both have WHU coming up with a much larger offer than the £9 million last quoted for him!!!

I think a 'well done' should go to the Everton Board as they seem to have tied up all of our better players to long-term deals... just need to sort out Pienaar now!!!
Martyn Valentine     Posted 06/11/2007 at 12:21:51   Comments (7)

Where's Ken Buckley gone!!

Does anyone know where Kens gone? He has stopped reporting after the derby match!! Do we need a petition to get him back???
Kevin Bennett     Posted 06/11/2007 at 09:07:56   Comments (8)

Optimistic but lets be Realistic

It's been a great five weeks to be an Evertonian, we have easily beaten four teams on the trot and won seven of our last nine games. If you choose to ignore the derby travesty there is only one blot on our copy book during this period and that's the defeat to Newcastle.

However, in saying this we have to temper our enthusiasm with the reality. We have beaten struggling Premier League sides Birmingham, Derby and Middlesboro; struggling Championship side Sheffield Wednesday; average League One side Luton; a Ukrainian side that was tenacious (but the Ukraine national league hardly matches the Premier League); and Larrissa, a very average side playing in the very average Greek League.

We now face the Nurnberg a team that competes in Europe on a regular basis and plays in the competitive Bundesleague and then Chelsea away. A decent result at these places (and I mean a draw as a decent result) and we can surely say we have arrived. However, anything else and its time to sit back and take a reality pill fellow Evertonians. COYB!!!
Peter  Pridgeon     Posted 05/11/2007 at 19:53:05   Comments (37)

Interesting!

Interesting isn't it? Clattenburg does what he did in the derby and, quite reasonably in my view, Moyes has a real verbal go at him, not once, but on several occasions. Moyes' comments were the nearest I have ever heard to a manager calling a referee corrupt.

And the FA response? Not a peep!

Fergie makes a relatively mundane (for him anway) comment about Webb's officiating in Manure's game against Arsenal (and in many ways a silly comment) and the word is he is being called in by the FA!

I suspect the FA knew they could not defend Clattenburg and would have found it morally indefensible to punish Moyes under the circumstances. Moreover, they knew Moyes had more to say and it would have caused them even more embarrassment. In other words....they shit out! And these scumbags are the primary regulating body of English football?! It doesn't exactly instill one with confidence that the game is in good hands does it?
Dave Roberts     Posted 05/11/2007 at 16:07:35   Comments (24)

Can we afford to lose our African stars

Pienaar and Yak are really starting to settle into our team and my only concern is the AFCON in Angola next year. I'm South African and support my country, but would rather see Pienaar in our blue shirt. Yobo, Pienaar and Yak are starting to really shine for us and we can't afford to lose them come January.

If they do decide to go, lets just hope their teams get early exits (I know this sounds weird coming from a South African). We need to keep them and push for a top 4 finish. I live in South Africa and still don't know why AFCON takes place in January-February!
Ricardo Humphries     Posted 05/11/2007 at 15:47:53   Comments (11)

Pienaar & The Yak

After an inconspicuous start to the season these two seem to be really coming on and giving the team that extra bit of quality.

At the start of the season Pienaar looked like another lightweight Osman-style midfielder that was too weak to cut it in the Prem. I'm not knocking Ossie, but Pienaar seems to have adjusted to the physical side and is showing real class with his touch, passing and ability to beat players with a trick. I hope we get signed up as soon as poss.

The goals are starting to come for the Yak and believe he will justify his price tag and hit double figures by by the end of the season. As was continually pointed out on this site, his prem scoring record is second to only one exceptional striker. As long as he's happy at Everton he will do the business.
Jon Berry     Posted 05/11/2007 at 14:04:19   Comments (22)

Nurnberg tickets - cancelled?

Just seen the following - I really hope its a hoax. The recorded message syas that if we bought tickets for the home end directly form Nuremberg we won't be allowed to have them as the game has been designated high risk. Full restitutuion will be made ? which I think means a full refund back onto the credit card.

Has anyone checked to see if they have their money back?

Its too late for us now ? we will still travel anyway. Surely they will allow us all entry as there's going to be thousands descending on the stadium, which will make things even worse for everyone - another fiasco in the offing.

_________________

Bad news folks. If you had the nouse to book your match ticket direct through Nuremberg's own web site or phone service, UEFA have now deemed that you cannot have your match tickets. They have categorised the match as high risk, and have got onto the fact that English based fans have been sourcing their tickets direct from Nuremberg FC, who were quite happy to sell them to Blues fans. Nuremberg even had the intelligence to place them next to the official away block in their Ground, to put all the Blues fans together.

To listen to the recorded message, please ring 0049180 5050326. Nuremberg have stated that a full refund will be given to the unlucky Blues fans who booked their tickets this way.
Steve  Jones     Posted 05/11/2007 at 13:28:10   Comments (37)

New Contract for Carsley?

We just don?t seem to have another player who can play the role that Carsley plays as good as he does.... This particular job is a hard role to do and not many can pull it off.

Looking at him, I would not be surprised if he is offered a three-year deal by one or two of the 'strugglers' in Jan. So, my view is that until we can replace him with someone of the same ilk, then we should tie him down now before his 1-year extension expires and before others start sniffing around. He is undoubtedly worth having around for the next 18 months at the very least...

Same goes for Stubbsy ? he has been outstanding once again this year and certainly does not look like he is ready for the knacker's yard just yet. Give them both extensions now I say ? another boost for morale for them and I am sure a sigh of relief from Tim Howard.
Steve Callaghan     Posted 05/11/2007 at 11:42:45   Comments (10)

Cover at Centre-Back

I?ve noticed recently that just as Everton are playing their best football of this season and most importantly winning, several posts are discussing which position needs strengthening during the January transfer window.

Initially, I wondered, "Why discuss transfers when we?re winning and when January is a long way away?" It didn?t make instant sense, but then I looked at the quality of recent opposition and it became apparent that if we consistently want to enjoy watching the recent standard of football, and to win, week-in, week-out, against the better teams, then we?re not quite strong enough.

I agree with most that, looking at the ability and age of the current first eleven, midfield is most in need of strengthening. Carsley needs replacing (Neville and Jags are not good enough as defensive midfielders), Pienaar must be signed, a central midfield general is required and also maybe a left footed winger. But, looking at the squad, it surprises me that very few mention our vulnerability at Centre Back.

As a first-eleven pairing, Yobo and Lescott are excellent and I have no doubt they are good enough to help Everton challenge the top Premier League sides, but we only have Jagielka and Stubbs as cover. Given that:

  • Lescott is Moyes preferred cover for Baines when he is injured.
  • Yobo will be on African Nations duty soon.
  • Many, prefer Jagielka as first choice right back: and
  • Stubbs at his age is injury prone and has few seasons left.
For me signing a young centre-back with the potential to challenge Lescott and Yobo is as important as strengthening our first choice midfield.
Colin Webb     Posted 05/11/2007 at 11:34:25   Comments (8)

Phil Neville

I've enjoyed reading some of the positive appraisals of Phil Neville's impact on this website of late. I think he's a very useful member of the squad who can play a significant role in our journey back to the top.

For those who question his distribution, hover your cursor over his name at the bottom of this article. His pass success rate was only bettered by Arteta, Pienaar and Yakubu at the weekend. Not bad for a right-back?
Brian Richardson     Posted 05/11/2007 at 11:13:21   Comments (3)

Lee Carsley

After our recent performances with Lee Carsley in the team and everyone raving, pro Moyes team selection, why was Lee Carsley dropped in recent games? Does our manager really believe that Neville is a better defensive midfielder than our unsung hero? And what would have happened if Neville would have not been sent off in the derby? Sorry but once a Manc always a Manc, especailly when you got your brother playing for them. GET RID IN JANUARY.
Colin  Malone     Posted 05/11/2007 at 00:17:10   Comments (16)

Mr Kenwright on MOTD 2

The appearance by our chairman on Match of the Day was cringeworthy in some ways but at least we have an owner who appreciates the history of Everton FC.

Why oh why then did he have to make the comment about the proposed new stadium being just outside Liverpool? That has left us all open to an additional tirade of abuse, I got texts immediately from those on the dark side who enjoyed what they saw.

I know it shouldn't bother me, but it did and whatever the rights and wrongs of the debate, they will always be quoting what our chairman said on Match of the Day tonight. Bad enough that others are out to get us, but when we shoot ourselves in the foot like that...

Thanks, Bill.
Conor  Feeney     Posted 04/11/2007 at 23:05:36   Comments (21)

Riquelme

Throughout the last couple of months, there hasn't been too many days go by before i read about someone yet again bringing Riquelme's name up. Will he come to Everton? Could we possibly aqquire a player of such pedigree? With people discussing the January tranfer window at the moment, and his name again appearing a couple of time, I would like to inform you of what I have been told.

My brother works for a company that makes and maintains websites. One of the websites his company overlooks is the Everton one. He told me that one of the workers at the company was working on a feature of some sort, or part of the website. He was running tests and what have you.

Anyway, he filled in a news box with a fake bit of text. The text being about Riquelme and a possible move to Everton. They guy accidently uploaded the webpage with the fake Riquelme story, instead of putting somewhere else to run the tests. The page was on the Everton website for about 5-15 minutes before he realised, and took it back down again. My brother was telling me how he was quite bemused how the Riquelme story had managed to make the radio the day after.

So to conclude, it is my belief that the whole thing was an accident and everything we constantly hear about the situation is just makebelieve from hopeful fans.
Marc Lucas     Posted 04/11/2007 at 18:06:14   Comments (10)

Top scorer

Just a suggestion for your next toffeeweb poll.

Who will be our top scorer this season? All five strikers have now scored after Vaughn's goal yesterday and you should probably add Tim Cahill into the poll.

The positive note is that we have a number of players who can score a goal. A goal threat is something we've lacked in the past but any of our forward players are capable of scoring to change the game.

Just for the record my vote goes (with fingers crossed) to Yakubu as he has the proven track record but I'd be happy to be proved wrong if its a high total by another player!
Robert Pullan     Posted 04/11/2007 at 17:19:36   Comments (7)

Interesting problem

We have been winning games starting 4-4-1-1. Fair enough but now we have 3 strikers scoring goals (Yak, Vic and Vaughny) and we still have Johnson to come back.

Should we stay with one striker or give two a go against an out of form but still very dangerous German team? I'd go with two up front and make them defend so we stop their fans getting into the game.
Dave Trudge     Posted 04/11/2007 at 15:20:45   Comments (0)

January Transfer Window

With DM adopting the familiar 4-5-1 formation at the moment, and it doing quite well with us winning the last 4 games in all competitions, where should he look to improve the squad? I believe a left winger/midfielder is a must. I've never been a big fan of his, but someone like Stuart Downing would be a good addition. As would Matt Taylor of Portsmouth.

With a quality left footed midfielder (as opposed to Leighton Baines filling in there when Lescott plays left back), a midfield five of Piennar and Downing/Taylor on the flanks, Carsley holding and Arteta and Cahill in the centre sounds mouth-watering to me.
Simon Gemine     Posted 04/11/2007 at 14:34:18   Comments (14)

Upsetting the Apple Cart

In numerous posts the spirit of the team is rightly mentioned and watching them play and celebrate yesterday they 'seemed' to enjoy playing with each other (no Frankie Howard titters, please). Tim H says he would be happy to finish his career at Everton and I do feel Davey has assembled a squad who would be genuinly happy to see out their careers in blue (agents and a Leeds like decline in performance aside).

So with the speculation about transfers starting up do we want the likes of Riquelme coming in and potentially spoiling this or is this a price that needs to be paid to take the next step?
Mike Dishome     Posted 04/11/2007 at 12:27:29   Comments (5)

Yakubu concerns

Yakubu played very well yesterday, his best game to date by far, and took his goal very nicely. But... as a Blue brought up on strikers such as Joe Royle, Bob Latchford, Graeme Sharp, Andy Gray and Duncan Ferguson, I am concerned that Yakubu has no desire to head the ball. He seems to take positive action to avoid this very basic requirement. At best he just stands there making it a little difficult for the Centre Half, at worst he simply ignores the ball. I think DM has had some success in upping Yak's workrate, hopefully the coaches can introduce heading a ball to his game.

£11.25 million for a striker who can't head a ball! Dixie must be turning in his grave!
Phil Traynor     Posted 04/11/2007 at 12:37:41   Comments (10)

Brum

I wasn't at the game yesterday and was busy most of the afternoon, so apart from the usual 30 seconds on MOTD the only bits I heard about the game were on 606. One of the first callers mentioned something about Birmingham employing gamesmanship when it was 1-1 in added time.

Following a Birmingham injury the caller said an Everton player put the ball out so he could get attention only for the visitors to retain the ball on the subsequent throw-in. Was this the case guys? Alan Green was quite magnanimous about it (for once) saying that if this was so, it was appalling behaviour on Birmingham's part.

I know everyone from the FA to FIFA has said that it is only up to the referee to halt play for injuries, but it is still good to see us playing the game like gentlemen, even if others don't (Stevie Me take note).
Mark Wynne     Posted 04/11/2007 at 11:45:40   Comments (6)

Whatd'ya mean 'don't shoot'!

I'm a big fan of Moyes but what sort of advice is it to tell a footballer not to shoot? Bobby Charlton always says that his attitude was that if you don't shoot you don't score. Many of his efforts ended up in the stands but then the others...
Tony Horne     Posted 04/11/2007 at 11:20:13   Comments (6)

Confused? Me?

You will really have to excuse me. There's a senior moment coming, after all I'm in my mid fifties. Although I do admit to 23, on a good day. Yes, I've had a hard life. I am after all a 44 year Evertonian.

Now, I've just about got over the Derby match. Yes, it will hurt for quite a while. What I have been waiting for is some sort of sanction against THAT ref.

I'm a great believer in natural justice. If a perceived wrong is committed. The powers that be will deal with it.

The ref apparently last week was on a long planned jolly. So what do we have this week? The man himself reffing a premier match, Fulham v Reading.

So what does that tell us? Namely that David Moyes in particular got it wrong. Kuyt did only deserve a yellow card and that Carragher was attacked by Lescott in the penalty area.

So using the inaction of the FA, THe Premier League or the Refs bosses. David Moyes should be brought to book for attacking the integrity of that ref.

Watch this space, 'FA charge Moyes'. It is a more likely scenaro than 'FA charge ref'.

If that does happen I suggest that we Evertonians should all chip in a tenner a piece for his inevitable fine.

But, what do I know, I'm just a confused middle aged git. I don't mind being beaten, but not when the opposition have 12 players on the pitch.
Mike Berry     Posted 04/11/2007 at 10:37:36   Comments (1)

Yesterday: Players, Moyes and the fans

Yesterdays finale was incredible, I personally think the way the players kept battling until the end was a credit and something Moyes has in truth instilled into the team since he arrived, I have never known an Everton team who have scored so many goals late as those under Moyes, however I am only 25!!!

Admittedly we should've already had the game won, and the goal was poor, a set piece we should be comfortable, but Birmingham obviously made changes so fair do's. I thought Pienaar, Osman and Carsley were our best players — all midfield by the way, Neville in my opinion deserves a mention.

I will not moan too much as the way it finished was great, but the abuse Moyes was receiving still rankles with me. We won 3-1 so everyone was happy if we had drawn, I know that Moyes would have had tons of posts asking to go!

Hibbert gets defense from people on here, but I feel Moyes, who has let's face it made us a top 10 team in 5 years, and is now on the path to make us a top 10 team and a cup team gets some terrible stick. I don't like the sub changes immediately a goal as it seems to bay to the fans, however I suppose he has no other option, no point being stubborn.

I just feel the fans at Everton are so so fickle towards Moyes, win he's great, lose or draw and sack him. He is doing a good job, and altough not necessarily an case for argument who the hell else is there? Get behind the players and the team hey, who knows we might finish top 6 and a cup final...STOP asking for him to be sacked because in recent times that is success!
Paul McGlone     Posted 04/11/2007 at 10:35:55   Comments (1)

Glorious Goodison

Yesterday was one of those days when you realise why you started watching football in the first place. We all love a grandstand finish and the unrestrained joy at the end will stay long in the memory. Looking down on the tumult in the St End it made me realise after the game then when Goodison rocks there is no beter sight in football. I don't know how many, if any, last minute winners we have left at the old lady so I am going to cherish every possible one.

On the game itself I have to say that Moyes reading of a game and in particular his use of subs continues to leave me in despair at times. When a game is going away from us he stands like a rabbit in th headlights and simply hopes for the best. I feel like shaking him as he if he can ovecome his natural caution he may yet become the great manager his supporters delude themselves he already is.
John Doolan     Posted 04/11/2007 at 09:00:55   Comments (3)

New-found optimism

Left it late today but there were spells in the game where we played some very good football, particularly in the build up to the first goal; terrific interchanging of passes to score the simplest of goals.

Pienaar for me was outstanding. Forget about Fernandes, this kid is truly exceptional, quick and intelligent passes coupled with a tremendous work effort and real desire to win. It will be absolutely criminal if we fail to secure the signature of this very promising talent. Yakubu too was immense today and is getting better with each game.

Carsley put in a great performance reminding us all that he truly is an unsung hero. What a fitting finale with the return of young Vaughan who has had a horrendous time with injuries and yet this has failed to deter his energy and enthusiasm for the game another young player with huge potential.

Last but not least a word of praise for Jagielka. He has looked much more assured playing in his more accustomed role as a defender. To cap it all we now have an abundance of riches up front. I suspect Moyes may well be faced with some very difficult selection decisions in the coming weeks — cause for optimism indeed.
Gerry Western     Posted 04/11/2007 at 01:12:02   Comments (10)

Marcel Marceau

My word MOTD are really scraping the barrel ? Marcell Desailly is an embarrassment. How long will they give this joke? It's bad enough staying up to watch 30 secs of the blues but we need to get shut of this wanker. What a disgrace ? saying Everton "aren't a great team and have a small ground and like to give it a go at home". Then he mumbled something about Torres and confidence that Hansen quickly smoothed over. Ron Atkinson reprieved...
Paul Godley     Posted 04/11/2007 at 01:11:28   Comments (16)

Jagielka and Pienaar

Phil Jagielka was outstanding in the central defensive position today. Dominant in the air, excellent pace and reading of the game and unlike Stubbs, was looking to play the ball to feet. Furthermore, on occasions he lifted his head and carried the ball upfield himself finding the midfield with astute passes which is a rarity for an Everton centre half.

Regarding Steve Pienaar, when he moved to the right midfield/winger position, he displayed many of the attributes and qualities of Trevor Steven which can only be good as Tricky was god in my opinion.
Steve Ryan     Posted 04/11/2007 at 01:02:34   Comments (20)

The final piece in the jigsaw

It is clear to see that the present squad is the strongest that we have had for a very long time and that with the right signings in the January transfer window we will be one of the strongest sides in the Premiership.

We all know that midfield is where we need a world class play-maker and the good news is that the best player in the world in that position could be available come January. I am well aware of the fact that over the past few months Riquelme's name has been mentioned on these pages and that many people think it is not possible to bring him here.

Well it is and if we make him an offer he can't refuse we will get him. Remember Napoli with Maradona in the eigthties! The most important part of a team is the midfield — we know we had one of greatest midfields in English football in the late sixties and mid-eighties lets get the right signings in this part of the field in January and we will be complete.
Andrew  Clare     Posted 03/11/2007 at 22:30:48   Comments (18)

Feeling good

Four wins on the bounce, goals coming, quality of passing football improving, Yakubu starting to look good, AJ on his way back, two games from Wembley, 3 points off fourth place. Will go to bed with a smile on my face tonight!

OK, the opposition hasn't been tough lately and the great Neville debate rolls on but let's enjoy being a blue for a while. Here's hoping for five on the trot for all us lads who'll be in Nuremberg on Thursday! COYB!!
Mike  Thomas     Posted 03/11/2007 at 21:00:23   Comments (10)

Anyone fancy a week away?

Perusing the fixture list, I discovered we are scheduled for 10 games between Dec 1st and January 1st which I perceive to be a lot, this includes the following week away:

  • Sat 15th v West Ham A (Prem)
  • Tues 18th v West Ham A (CC)
  • Thur 20th AZ Alkmaar (Uefa Cup) TBC
The AZ game is listed as TBC, surely Everton must lobby for this game to be changed? Oh by the way on Sun 23rd we travel to Old Trafford!

Correction

Well the offical site's fixture list has the West Ham cup game on the 18th but the report on the draw says it will be played the week prior to the premiership game (probably Wed 12th), this would make much more sense! Still a tough week but we would rather be playing these games than sitting on our arses watching (like usual)!
Richard Williams     Posted 03/11/2007 at 20:25:20   Comments (0)

Nurnberg: good team, no goalscorers

I just saw the 10-minutes long highlights of the game Nurnberg played today. They lost 0-1 to reigning champions Stuttgart.

What struck me was that Nurnberg outplayed Stuttgart, particularly in midfield. They really looked a very, very strong side with some flowing football. We'll have great trouble creating much from midfield against them ? it wouldn't surprise me if we reverted to the hated hoofball...

Now the positive note from the game was that although Nurnberg created chance after chance, they just didn't want to finish it off. Their strikers missed four or five 100% goal chances. Wouldn't mind if their finishing is equally poor come Thursday!

All in all, it will be a very tough game, Nurnberg are way better than I expected. But our confidence is sky-high and theirs will be sub-zero, if we manage to score an early goal we've got a decent chance of winning it.
Erik Dols     Posted 03/11/2007 at 19:20:19   Comments (2)

Phil Neville today

When is the penny going to drop (in DM's head) with respect to Phil Neville? Red cards, own goals, reckless challenges and generally routinely shit performances. Nice guy he may apparently be but why should this matter in terms of getting your place in the team?

I am sick of getting the heebee geebees every time the teamsheet comes out and his name is on it. He brings very little to the team in an attacking context just increases the fear factor at the back and greatly increases the risk of our imploding at any given moment. An avoidable liability in my opinion.

Newcastle apparently offered £4M for him at the beginning of the season ? why when we had just signed Baines and Jagielka did we not grab that offer??? With Neville in the team we are playing each match with one hand tied behind our backs.

Only for the last few minutes today, it would have been a terribly wasted opportunity today against very poor opposition that our opponents for a top six position (Blackburn, Villa, Pompey) will probably hit for 3/4-0 at home.

Great to see Vaughan hitting the back of the net though... goals now coming from various corners of the pitch.
Alan Doyle     Posted 03/11/2007 at 17:41:47   Comments (18)

Off and Running

Couldn't get there today but great stuff after just 10 mins by the sound of the EvertonTV commentary. Great football, played along the ground, in to Yakubu's feet... GOAL!!! Loving it!
Paul Hardcastle     Posted 03/11/2007 at 16:16:03   Comments (13)

Carling Cup Draw

Well, now we all know who we will have in the Cup. All we hoped for was a home draw as on our day we can beat any of the teams left. I was hoping for the Hammers at our place but we have to travel to theirs... and we get to play a week earlier than the rest.
Tony Miller     Posted 03/11/2007 at 13:11:50   Comments (8)

More enthusiasm?

Every day I come on to this site to read the columns and mailbag as it is the best unofficial site in the Premier League by far. What i would like to see, though, is a bit more enthusiasm about the team.

It has been a bit dull this season for the supporters, but you have to look at our situation for the first quarter, team selection and injuries have been our main hinderance.

I think we have turned the corner, we are moving back up the table in the quarter finals of the Carling Cup poised to get into the next round of the Uefa Cup, players are coming back to fitness, and there is talk of transfers in january.

I think its time to be optimistic, let's get behind the team with some constructive critisism not just the same old tripe about how bad we are and where the blame should be laid. COYB!!!!
Allan Williamson     Posted 03/11/2007 at 08:34:40   Comments (2)

January Transfers?

Just read at SkySports.com that Moyes has said there isn't any money to spend in January. Forgive me for asking, but weren't we about to spend something in the region of £12 million on Fernandes days before the transfer window closed? Where's that money gone? Or is this just a smokescreen?
Adam Doyle     Posted 02/11/2007 at 17:35:57   Comments (20)

Players wages, too much?

Watching something the other night on Sky Sports News regarding the wages John Terry gets at Chelsea, supposedly now 150,000 a week, and the agruments the guy on the news was giving in favour of players getting huge wages because of their 'short' career as a footballer got me so blinking mad I had to change the channel in favour or Cornation Street.

Yeah, ok, players do have short careers, accepted, but most earn more in a week than I do in a year and the feckers can retire when the game is finished with them or if they 'can't' retire when finished playing football there is a host of opportunites available such as management, footy tv shows, or selling your name to the latest add for Durex!

Point of this rant is that surely players are well beyond the point of being paid fairly for their profession and that £150,00 a blinking week is about 100,000 to much!? I mean who else works in a job where the win the lotto every week? More of this money should be to improve the club and not the players' fancy lifestyle.
Anto  Doran     Posted 02/11/2007 at 15:56:28   Comments (11)

Atmosphere

Is it me or has the atmosphere at Goodison been a bit, well, shit this season?

We need to sing more I reckon. Anyone got any theories beyond conspiracy? Is it because we've been a bit average on the pitch?

Like Russ Abbot said, 'I love a party with a happy atmosphere'
Allan Hobbs     Posted 02/11/2007 at 15:40:03   Comments (12)

Love this

Following link made me smile and rage in equal measure under the title "The Biggest Hypocrite in England".
Steve Guy     Posted 02/11/2007 at 12:52:04   Comments (17)

Hibbert again

Prompted by the warranted/unwarrented (depending on your viewpoint) of Tony Hibbert, I wanted to ask a question to the regular visitors of this site about the art of tackling.

A good tackle is ideally a standing tackle but sliding is just as good if you take the ball and then are able to come away with it. The End.

The tackles that Tony Hibbert has produced are hard tackles (which are also good, when executed) but contrast this with the amount of times he gets beaten by the man, dives in and commits fouls usually in dangerous areas, is caught out of position & his decision making is poor (eg. v Liverpool).

So the question is why do people come on here and comment that Tony is a 'solid defender' or 'great tackler' but then go on to critisize the rest of his game?

Because if you wanted to comment on his lack of actual ability with the ball (passing, crossing etc), that is also valid, just be aware that the other side of his game is not so hot either.
John Lloyd     Posted 02/11/2007 at 12:39:16   Comments (17)

Marketing Manager

The Everton website is advertising for the position of marketing manager/director. This is quite an important position at the club. I just wanted to know who was our old one and has anyonne heard through the grapevine who its gonna be?

I'm just interested because the marketing director is reponsible for getting our name in the public and I hope its not someone who comes in and changes every aspect of the club.
Dave Trudge     Posted 02/11/2007 at 12:11:54   Comments (6)

Carling Quarters...Liverpool at Home?

Hope I'm not getting ahead of myself...

Anyone else getting a nagging feeling that after recent events, that fate may hand us a quarter final match up with our cheating neighbours? Preferably at Goodison of course for obvious reasons.

You can imagine the tension in the Everton dressing room beforehand (with a fit Timmy, Gravesen and AJj available too) and in the stands that night. It would be incredible.

Moyesy wouldn't have to say a pre-match speech, would be simple enough - show them the Clattenberg game again and say "after that, you know what you have to do this time, just do it".

We'll be over at Goodison this Saturday for the Birmingham game, but I will be keeping an eye on the draw. But a home draw against Liverpool? What odds would you get on another Goodison Derby in light of recent events?

It would be one of the very very few occassions I'd be looking forward to playing them. We definitely owe the Spanish Waiter one good send off before he's chopped in the summer. One bad refereeing mistake and I reckon it would be all out war!!!
Declan Brown     Posted 01/11/2007 at 23:14:45   Comments (1)

JJB

Today I rang my local JJB store in Morecambe asking them to order for me, for my son`s birthday, the Everton 3rd kit . They rang me back later to tell me their Head Office had told them the kit wasn`t available until the end of November... and these are our retail partner.
Anthony  Dilworth     Posted 01/11/2007 at 19:54:08   Comments (10)

Why bother?

Like many fans, I followed up the derby fiasco by complaining to the FA over the woeful perfomance of Mr Clattenberg. The attached response says it all because it says nothing. I've now taken their advice and forwarded the complaint to Keith Hackett ? don't hold your breath Blues.

Dear Mr Keating,

I write in reference to your e-mail concerning the Everton vs Liverpool fixture on Saturday 20 October 2007.

The Football Association receives frequent correspondence on individual refereeing decisions across all levels of football as well as on the performance of referees in general. Every supporter will have an opinion on the game?s major talking points and we?re always interested to hear them.

Tony Hibbert?s red card
Some supporters have suggested that Liverpool?s Steven Gerrard influenced the decision to send Everton?s Tony Hibbert from the field of play. All decisions on the field of play are made by the referee and regardless of the context it is not for players to influence or advise the referee on a decision.

Select Group referees? performances are assessed by the Professional Game Match Officials (PGMO) and appointments made accordingly (see below).

Dirk Kuyt?s challenge on Phil Neville As supporters will be aware Liverpool?s Dirk Kuyt was booked for the challenge in question. FIFA guidelines aimed at avoiding the ?re-refereeing? of matches generally prevent The FA from taking disciplinary action on incidents which are seen and dealt with at the time by the match officials (this includes taking no action). As a general rule, if the match officials see an incident and have jurisdiction to take action, The FA cannot act retrospectively. These guidelines prevent The FA from upgrading/downgrading yellow and red cards based on retrospective advice provided by the match referee.

Everton FC penalty appeals Whether a penalty is awarded or not is a decision of the referee guided by assistance from the assistant referee. They are required to make a split second decisions based on what they see. This is subsequently analysed repeatedly by slow motion cameras and panels of football experts. Ultimately, football is a tremendously popular and successful game played worldwide under the fundamental principle that ?the referee?s decision is final?.

Refereeing has been restructured with the aim of continued improvement of the overall standard of refereeing in the professional game. This sees match officials categorised into two groups with the Select Group officiating in the Premier League.

The Select Group is the responsibility of Keith Hackett, General Manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL).

There is a system in place for monitoring the performance of referees and referee's assistants. This involves referees assessors and reports from club managers. All assessors come from a footballing background and the majority are fully qualified referees themselves. The performances of referees over a season are then taken into consideration when the leagues appoint their referees for the following season.

Whilst we can understand the frustration that comes with decisions going against your team The FA are confident that the disciplinary procedures off the pitch as well as the referees on the pitch uphold the Laws of the Game without bias to player or club.

We do appreciate all of the feedback we receive from supporters. This feedback is collated and used to build a picture of public opinion and is subsequently fed back internally within the organisation. Please rest assured your comments will form part of this feedback process.

Kind regards,

Alex Howells | Customer Relations Officer The Football Association


Mike Keating     Posted 01/11/2007 at 19:02:03   Comments (20)

Pay

Puts it all in perspective a bit, the alleged payslip of a certain player ?

(Can I just write the word alleged, alleged, alleged, alleged. These people allegedly can be a bit paranoid and have good lawyers !)

Somehow in the heat of a season it doesn't matter for a while but then there's an dose of reality....even if the story isn't true.

Now I have no more dislike of any highflying player than any of ours and I guess that is how "the glorious market" operates.

But for those who are a little older and lived before 1979, this is obscene and pehaps as we cry out for Kenright to buy, buy, buy and then buy higher, we should remember just whose friggin money they are taking.

Enjoy work tomorrow.

I'm keeping my payslip under armed guard I tell ya... not having floods of footballers calling for a sub.

Jesus.
Ged Simpson     Posted 01/11/2007 at 18:44:02   Comments (11)

Moyes, what's my view worth?

Having stumbled across this superb site a few months ago I?ve enjoyed replacing occasional work time boredom with reading the fans comments, and I?m most intrigued by the apparent diversity in opinion surrounding the performance of David Moyes as manager of this great club. To put my views into context I?m a football fan who has followed Everton for 20ish years, but given the regularity with which I visit Goodison I?d be cheeky to call myself an Everton fan!

I would like to hear your views on whether Moyes is the right manager to lead Everton into a position where they are consistently challenging for the Premiership title?

For what it?s worth I think he is the right man.

From memory when he took over the reins in 2002 he inherited a small squad that lacked quality, a club that lacked transfer funds, a club that lacked progressive management, ownership and stability (5 managers in circa 9 years), and a side that had seemingly always languished in the bottom half of the premiership, occasionally narrowly missing relegation.

Under Moyes Everton have finished 7th, 17th, 4th, 11th and 6th, a big improvement on the group of preceding Premiership finishes, even though the squad was still small and for the most part transfer funds still lacked in comparison to rival clubs. For me, the improvement is largely down to Moyes intelligent management; he plays a style of football that is best suited to his squad i.e. in the past, Hoofball that was not pretty but relatively effective given the squad. Before I get the ?sounds like your advocating Hoofball? replies thrown at me, I don?t support it for the current improved squad, but I did understand its place while we lacked quality.

OK, I accept that the club is probably now under new better ownership and transfer funds have improved (if only this or last year) but in my opinion under Moyes Everton have overachieved based on the standard of the squad ? and Moyes is to thank for that. I also agree that Moyes is prone to the odd mistake, tactical naivety at home to Metalist, occasional suspect player selection but he is still cutting his teeth as a relatively young, inexperienced manager.

Moyes is intelligent, willing and able to learn, hard working, mostly liked by his players and determined to win trophies with Everton. He gives Everton much needed stability. He is now buying better quality players and slowly adapting our play away from the ugly, but at a time successful Hoofball, to a more attractive passing style.

For those Moyes doubters out there, what am I missing?
Gavin Uren     Posted 01/11/2007 at 17:03:53   Comments (11)

Phil Jagielka

Just wanted to make a quick comment on Jags.

I've noticed a lot of positive letters in recent days about our displays against Larissa and Derby — with most people attributing the change in fortunes to the return of Timmy C to the midfield.

I totally agree that his running, positional sense and eye for goal give us another dimension, but one thing I haven't seen mentioned is Phil Jagielka's contribution from right back.

Is it just me, or was Jags an absolute revelation overlapping and crossing down the right against Derby? He has copped a lot of stick since he signed, as people have considered his midfield performances less than acceptable, but I think with him down the right supporting Mikky and Baines down the left supporting Pienaar/Ossie we have very strong flanks for the first time in ages.

Combine this with Timmy C in the middle next to an anchorman (Cars, or even Neville) and add in a couple of good strikers (take your pick from 5) and we suddenly look dangerous.

Let's hope the strain of 4 games in just over a week doesn't prevent the boys from blowing Birmingham away this weekend!
Zac Stephenson     Posted 01/11/2007 at 17:18:31   Comments (9)

Questions...but still no answers

Well done to the lads on last night. One would hope that three straight wins would help build confidence. We still appear so fragile at times, although, I believe that last night's job was made more difficult by the starting 11. That's a concern. I get the feeling that Moyes is getting 'personal' on the Neville/Hibbert/Jagielka issue. His judgement seems to not be based on events on the pitch...how can it be?

Tenacity and resoluteness are admirable qualities. They can soon however turn into stubborn denial....careful, Mr Moyes. I would like to see one of Jagielka/Neville start at right back... that's it.

Finally, just what is happening with Clattenberg? Is it now officially swept under the carpet?. Though not surprised, I am saddened at the fact that it would appear that EFC have provided the brush.

It's always the fans that truly miss out. A true modern day football scandal.
James McPherson     Posted 01/11/2007 at 16:46:46   Comments (2)

Nuremburg: Offical trip let down

I booked two packages with Everton Travel and chased them today to find out the flight times. I am a season ticket holder and I was told these were confirmed booking. I was told today Everton only sent 400 tickets to Everton Travel instead on the expected 600 so 200 people including myself will not be going. I am getting the Everton run-around passing the buck from Everton to Everton Travel.

I expect you may hear more of this because all the people who have booked do not know yet. By the way I am now looking for 2 spare tickets, I can be contacted on 07734 008 426.
Tom O'Donnell     Posted 01/11/2007 at 13:25:11   Comments (7)

Why pick best XI

On any football sites it goes on, in all pubs, clubs or anydiscussions about football it goes on but to actual football picking a best eleven is not that important. So why is there always a thread about best elevens or when people comment they put thier best eleven in, I know its one of the reasons that Championship Manager and the like sell so much is cos we all know better but in the modern game I think you have to change you team for the opposition you face. For example our best eleven against Arsenal will probably not be the best eleven to play against Derby. More so Man utds best eleven against Villa at home will not be the best eleven to face Kiev away. Now dont get me wrong, every team has players that play in 90% of thier games, for us it would prob be Lescott, Arteta, Yobo, Cahill.

I believe this is the reason that bellend over the park has all the trouble, it's not that he rotates, he leaves out his best players at the wrong (right, ha ha) times. Whereas Ferguson will hardly ever leave out Fatarse and Ronaldo from same team and they are blessed with well more quality than that shower of shite across the park.

So in the future when we state our best elevens we should try to be more specific as to the reasons why it's our best eleven at that particular time or for that particular game.
John Lloyd     Posted 01/11/2007 at 12:46:20   Comments (1)

Yak spat

I understand Yak has been left out of the Nigeria squad for the next game due to a spat with Vogts about being left on the bench.

I am surprised he hasn't had one with Moyes who only plays him in the league.

The good news is that he may not get selected for the ANC in January, how this effects future work permits I dont know.

I am hoping they leave Anichebe out too as he has already had an incident with Vogts too, as did our own David Weir when he was Scotland manager.
Michael  Newton     Posted 01/11/2007 at 11:08:08   Comments (3)

Silverware or Champions League

After watching last night's game and seeing us progress to the quarter finals for the first time in 19 years, I was wondering what Evertonians would prefer from this season if all was to go incredibly well, but you can only choose between:

Some guaranteed silverware, either Carling or FA cup but to finish in lower mid table

OR a place in next year's big money spinning Champions League and a chance to further enhance our squad with big money buys?
Peter Toney     Posted 01/11/2007 at 10:37:17   Comments (8)

“ Pay as you play” Tommy

The mystery of David Moyes's reluctance to use Tommy G even when he's fit and available can, I think, be explained by the nature of the deal that saw him return to Goodison from Celtic Park.

It's no secret in these parts that Gordon Strachan was convinced early last season that the Dane's legs "had gone". In all, he made only about a dozen starts throughout the campaign and although he was on a three year contract, Strachan was keen to get rid.

Now Moyes is as canny as the Celtic chief, and when the Fernandes deal fell through at the very last minute, he put a deal to "Wee Gordy" that If Gravesen returned to Goodison on loan, he would only pay his wages for the weeks he appeared in the first team. A continuation of the injury difficulties which restricted his appearances up here meant that Everton had nothing to pay early season but now I suspect it is Scottish prudence that sees Gravesen so sparingly used.

Unless he is given more playing time, you can expect him to return North by Christmas!
John  Mackay     Posted 01/11/2007 at 09:53:25   Comments (4)

Carling Cup: Instant Karma

Am I in sizeable company hoping and praying for our lovable neighbours at GP in the QF? This time with a competent official who can call the big decisons right. Because if it happens I am convinced that we will win — the rediscovered blue passing game versus the red hoofball, 11 versus 11, only one result. Instant karma, bring it on!
Steve Parry     Posted 01/11/2007 at 08:54:35   Comments (1)

e-ticketing farce

Has anyone else had difficulties buying a ticket for Birmingham through the e-ticketing system?

I've tried every night this week but it keeps saying due to high volume the system is down.

I've sent emails to the club but I'm not expecting a response, their customer service is shockingly poor.
Chris  Jones     Posted 01/11/2007 at 01:17:17   Comments (1)

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