The Mail Bag

September 2008 Archive
Want to have your say?

Tales from the bottom of my garden

If the plug is pulled on Kirkby, we can expect an even greater push toward a shared stadium. The current and foreseeable money crisis has seriously dented the Yanks' hopes of raising more leveraged capital. They are in dire financial straits both here and America. An injection of Tesco funds is a way out for them. Whats in it for Tesco?

For starters, it could do it's development over the Goodison and northern end of Stanley Park and still be within the Kirkby / South Lancs catchment. Everton's share of costs would come from selling Goodison to Tesco plus a LCC donation of that part of Stanley Park not already ceded to LFC. There could also be some government grants available.

What about the Arabs? They are on the sidelines waiting for the inevitable financial collapse of Hicks and Gillett. In any case, the Arabs, devoid of parochial nonsense, would also favour a shared stadium.

Plans to regenerate Kirkby could be permanently shelved and everyone would live happily ever after.
Dick Fearon     Posted 30/09/2008 at 23:13:56   Comments (11)

606 The Monday Club Night

Just catching up with the 606 programme on with Mark Saggers, Steve Claridge, Ian McGary and John Motson... And during the show, not quite got to the end of it yet, but they seem to going round some basic discussions about Newcastle and Spurs. But on the side is comment about Everton, or indeed David Moyes...

First note to point was, when talking about Spurs being bought up, Motson said he expected two other clubs to be bought before Spurs, and neither of those to be Newcastle. When later pressed on who those clubs where he suggested Portsmouth and Everton. So there is a bit of speculation, though I know Motson's commentary style isn't for all, I do believe he lives football, and wouldn't make comment without having some good feelings.

Motson later said, if he was buying Newcastle his first move would be to go to Everton and offer £20mil for David Moyes. Now at the moment many fans would snap the hand off if Newcastle's new owners did that. But it does raise an interesting point.

Is David Moyes a man who could take pretty much any lower table Prem team to the position we are in now? On a limited budget and is good at turning round squad morale and dealing with clubs with older squads or squads full of expensive flops.

I think there may be a point there; Moyes seems to feel now he has hit a ceiling with Everton. He wants money to spend and we don't have it. Doesn't seem his heart is really in it 100%. I believe that would change if a new board came in with money, as again Moyes's ambition will match the clubs spending power. But until that happens, has his mind got half an eye on what comes next? If he wanted to stay no matter what at Everton, he would have signed a new deal; now for fans, club and the man himself, we have to realise time is ticking down very quickly.

It's clear that Moyes is a hugely respected manager in football and rightly so, I guess the question that everyone is asking, is is he the manager for Everton as we are now in 2008? That is a hard one to answer...
David Turner     Posted 30/09/2008 at 19:34:01   Comments (25)

Tim, Stevie and a Thought Experiment

Who in the entire world thinks that Steven Gerrard would have been sent off for Tim Cahill's challenge on Saturday?

Who, if by some 'mistake' Gerrard did get a red card, thinks that the inevitable Liverpool appeal would have been turned down like Cahill's?

Says it all I think.
Neil Pearse     Posted 30/09/2008 at 15:30:53   Comments (32)

Midfield Bypass

Some people's way of dealing with things is to ignore the problem and hope it goes away. It strikes me as this is what's happening with our midfield as they are certainly being ignored by our defenders.

To be fair to Moyes, he wanted to take advantage of our progress and the momentum of last season but was obviously restricted by his transfer kitty. Perhaps this is also the reason for the delay in signing the new contract and his obvious lack of enthusiasm. Having said that, I think that we really should be playing to our strengths, a strong defense, a gifted midfield and good forward line. Not to use potentially the best area of our team (midfield) seems like madness and to my mind can only be coming from the training ground and general culture.

Maybe Moyes doesn?t have much confidence in them, maybe Moyes wanted to change that in the transfer window, maybe the players he did bring in were forced on him and need time to bed in but whatever the reasons he needs to sort it out soon and start playing more creative and attacking football, not least for the sake of the fans.
Ste Blundell     Posted 30/09/2008 at 11:26:31   Comments (14)

A little bloke with a big mouth

Our tears of frustrated anger after a disgusting derby have barely dried and already, Osman, one of the main reasons for our grief has burst into print spouting about what he and his equally pathetic team mates will do to Standard Liege. When will the PR dickheads get it into their thick skulls that the only thing that can save face is a win. Until the runs are on the board it would be best if the whole blooming mob shut the fuck up.
Dick Fearon     Posted 30/09/2008 at 11:22:25   Comments (24)

Why can't BK sell ?

As a lifelong Blue I am getting more and more depressed at the state of the club. Never mind the shambles on the pitch, I am a lot more concerned at what is goin on behind the scenes. Everton have been run like a big boys hobby since BK took over, I am grateful he bought the club in the first place because we'd have been in even deeper shit if he hadn't. But all this talk we've had for the last 2 years, and more recently reinforced that he wants to sell the Club is all well and fine, but if his selling techniques are anything like the rest of his football business acumen its no wonder nobodys interested.

The Bar Codes only have to mention they are on the market and within days there is talke of all sorts of buyers queuing up, Man City suddenly found a sugar daddy, Villa sold up to the Yanks, everyone except EFC can find a suitor and whats coming out of Goodison reagrding buyers, sod all! How can a club with thie history and fan base we have not find someone to be interested in buying?

I think its all down to the usual apathy at the club starting at the top. If they were actively looking for a buyer I'm sure there would be somebody (not the fantasy ones like the Fortress crap) out there willing to invest. This apathetic attitude seems now to be filtering down to the manager and team. DM looks like he can't be arsed, the players look like they can't be arsed and we are now starting to feel the same. How can a Club who finished 5th last year end up in such a soddin mess, look at the top boys, they are now trying to gag us with the new Shareholders rules but surely to god we can't let the club go any further down into the mire.

Kenwright, if you really do love this club like you so often profess, get off your luvvy arse and find someone who can at least give us hope again becasue after supporting this club for more than 40 years, I am losing it more every day.
Russ Quinlan     Posted 30/09/2008 at 07:57:17   Comments (28)

Everton are where we want to be

Remember those immortal words from the Toon Messiah? Surely you can, it was only four months ago. Our boys in blue had just decapitated the Toon Army at Goodison on the final game of the season, confirming UEFA Cup competition and 5th in the Premier League. For some (i.e. me) it was but a feeling of consolation, that we missed out on 4th (insert your reasons/excuses here), and that a flurry of transfer activity was about to commence and ?put things right? the coming season.

Four months on, Everton are to meet Newcastle United at Goodison again this weekend. Keegan is no more, and quite frankly, maybe Moyes too by then. At least, the Moyes of four months ago is no longer here in spirit. Newcastle are now placed 17th and Everton 14th. Newcastle is up for sale (again) and is entertaining the prospect of a Nigerian Consortium ruling the Geordies. Everton?s Destination Kirkby has been called in and we have no Plan B. How things change so quickly in football.

Maybe Keegan was too quick to comment too. He maybe didn?t notice the real up and coming club. A club that plays attacking, exciting yet effective football. A club that has a sound, prudent, resolute and ambitious manager and owner. A club that will not baulk to the Sky 4 and let their players defect at will and hold themselves to ransom. A club with integrity that is not based on any written statement found somewhere, but acting with due diligence in a league that is spiraling out of control and moral.

A club that is morally sound, epitomized by the sponsorship deal on their shirts, that is not about failed financial houses, alcohol, and gaming. But about children?s charity. A club that?s not about throwing millions of money to buy success, to gloat to their peers about their new plaything.

A club that is truly the voice of so many frustrated true football fans/purists all over the country (and world) that is sick to death with the Sky 4 monopoly and growing disparity between the poor and the mega-rich.

Keegan targeted the wrong club. It is Aston Villa — The True Peoples? Club. Bill Kenwright should take a leaf from their book.
Jason Lam     Posted 30/09/2008 at 03:30:18   Comments (19)

Our 'Fans'

Apart from the shocking performance on Saturday, what upset me most was how bad the atmosphere between the two sets of supporters has become. I set next to two koppites which was not the best but they celebrated their team's goals without any show of abuse towards us, as I feel they were entitled to do; I would do it at Anfield. The abuse they got was disgusting, mindless.... insert your own adjective. Is this what it has come to?

I may be looking through rose-tinted specs but I've stood on the Kop and celebrated an Everton win without all that shit. Irrespective of how we feel LFC have 'got off' with things in the past, remember it's a game, a sport. I'm not sure I want to go to a derby at Goodison anymore, which ? after 35 years ? saddens me a lot.
Mike  Iddon     Posted 29/09/2008 at 18:13:44   Comments (34)

My complaint sent to Aunty re Alan Green

Dear Sir/madam,

What is the procedure for deciding who commentates on which matches?

My concern centres around Mr Alan Green. I do not expect a commentator (certainly one working for the BBC) to posses such biase in their views when commentating on a match involving a particular team. Two teams centre around this, one being Liverpool, of whom Mr Green is clearly a supporter. The other is Everton who Mr Green clearly does not appreciate or enjoy to commentate on.

He consistenly points his views in a negative way and against any thing for in favour of Everton. This weekend saw the Merseyside derby which his comments in the end lead me to this complaint. Admittedly Everton were not at their best however Green was consistently negative against them yet again, not one positive comment and went to great lengths to criticise them. Liverpool were also not at there best but green clearly saw this as a bad day at the office and brushed over it.

It got to one point where he completly crossed the line. Tim Cahill made a poor tackle which lead to him receiving a red card. Obvoiusly Greens view was that it should have been a straight red, others (Alan hansen on MOTD) would disagree but fine this was his opinion and was the only comment required. However to go on to discribe it as one of the worst tackles on a football pitch and to categorise it along with Guttries (Newcastle v hull), Pogatatz (m'boro v Man Utd) really took his biase to another level.

There was no need what so ever for this and I would like it to be considered that Green would be put out of his misery and no longer considered as a choice for future Everton matches. I would also like him to make an on air apology for his comments regarding the Tim Cahill challenge. I could go to more lengths in offering examples and proof of Greens biase however I do not feel there is the need when the Cahill example is apt enough. Whether he should be able to comentate on Liverpool matches in the future would also concern me if I were the BBC but as an Evertonian myself I will be biased (!!!!!!!!!) and just ask for him to never commentate on us again.

Regards

Craig Taylor
Craig Taylor     Posted 29/09/2008 at 14:31:58   Comments (19)

Pienaar

From bad to worse this season, Piennar arested last night for assalt. Oh dear, dear me.
Sean Thompson     Posted 29/09/2008 at 14:17:53   Comments (18)

Is it really time for change?

I am simply amazed at the volume of supporters calling for Moyes head. The only manager for to break the Sky 4, and consistently proved as being the 'best of the rest'. Now after a poor start, several turn against and decide they want Glen Hoddle, Allardyce or whatever. It's UNBELIEVEABLE.

The reality is this:

- We are 4 points off UEFA Cup position
- One of our main rivals for UEFA football is bottom of the league
- Next in the league, we are up against a team who have lost 4 on the bounce
- We have a central nucleus of PROVEN talented football players (Howard, Yobo, Lescott, Jageilka, Pienaar, Arteta, Cahill, Yakubu)
- Even though our service has been piss poor, our main striker looks as deadly as ever when given the chances
- We have promising players yet to make their full mark, but show they certainly have the ability (Fellaini, Castillo, Baines, Kissock, Rodwell, Saha, Vaughan, Baxter)
- Form is temporary, class is permanent

The start of the season has been shite, but to say we are getting relegated? To say this is this worst ever football you have seen , do you remember players like Gerrard, Hottiger, Preki, Cadamateri, Amokachi, Pembridge, Madar, Grant, Tiler, Alexandersson, Oster, Williamson, Angell, Ginola, Gazza, etc.?

Seems people have a very short memory around here. I remember being consistent relegation battlers not so long ago. Some must have forgot about all that, and believe now we have the right to challenge for the title every season, just because our motto says so. The bar has been raised over the past few season's, but football is football. Arsenal got beat at home by Hull for fucks sake! If we slaughter Newcastle next week, there is no reason the confidence injected can take us on a run. I genuinely believe that. Just as I believe Spurs wont end the season bottom.

The majority of goals conceded have been about individual mistakes, not teams carving us open at the back. These are things that can be fixed, as the players have the ability. Moyes not signing his contract is surely not helping at all, but to call for the head of the man that the vast majority of the other '2nd tier' teams would give their right arm for is ridiculous. The mistakes are there for all to see, so you can be sure they will be worked on in training countless times.

I am not ready to start pissing on the grave of EFC before it is buried. its times like this where you need to stand by your family and support, not spit venom which can only do harm. Things are shite right now. But this isnt the first, or the last time we will be outside the top six over the course of a season. The manager and his team have improved during tough times before (last seasons derby for instance, when suprisingly people also called for Moyes' head), and I am positive they can do it again.

I accept that people will completely disgaree with my comments, and can only see things getting worse. And I accept you are entitled to your opinion's. But when I read people saying I hope we lose so things will change, it makes my fucking blood boil. David Moyes has still got my full support, and I for one hope that he stays. This is his toughest time as EFC manager without doubt, but I still believe he has the ability to improve.
Dan Brierley     Posted 29/09/2008 at 12:02:37   Comments (32)

Excuses, excuses, excuses

With the club currently in a increasingly downward spiral with results and performances since the Fiorentina game at Goodison it is interesting to hear what the manager has attributed this all to. After the limp and spineless capitulation against the shite Mr Moyes had some answers for us all as to why that game plan did not work — MONEY, £100 million being the specific amount.

Now how many Bobby Charlton soccer school trips does that buy to teach everyone how to pass to one another? Quite a lot, but surely with a full-time coach and manager we can offer this service for free to them?

In stating that we need HUGE investment to be able to compete, what message does that give the players? Well it's simple, they are not good enough and the manager does not trust them.

Another interesting quote has appeared on skysports.com today with the manager now saying that perhaps him not signing his contract is affecting the confidence of the players.

Yes, David, time is running out, let's get back to the contract shall we before it is shredded. My God, you deserve that massive increase especially as we cannot compete financially with any other club in the league. How many people who watch the club can see EXACTLY what is wrong at the moment, except the man that matters most?

It is exactly what has been wrong for 90% of the 6 and a half years of the manager's tenure: negativity and percentage football, this will not work anymore you have been found out.

Granted, to all you optimists especially you Mr Dodd, Mr Moyes has progressed the club from mediocrity to well mediocrity except in the league placings. He has been successful to a point but at what point do we as fans start demanding to see our team which is now the best it has been for 2 decades start actually progressing by moving the ball around quickly on the floor like we did against Fiorentina? A game in which we battered a very good european team which was on the verge of finishing in a champions league place in serie A.

Now, Mr Moyes, I don't know what has happened to you ( at a guess being fed bullshit) but you used to be a very passionate and honest man who would tell it like it is, what has happened to these character traits you once possessed that made most believe you were the right man for the job? I feel that the perfect excuse which could have gained you a lot of respect from the fans was to state that the negative way of playing for a 0-0 at home was a mistake which you will not be making again.
Andrew Laird     Posted 29/09/2008 at 11:25:03   Comments (2)

The penny finally drops!

Having posted several comments on TW since pre-season about the prevailing situation ? i.e. aside from all the transfer shite, the fact that the manager hadn't committed to the club can only be detrimental to team spirit and the general "spunk" that characterises our team ? it seems that this notion has finally been acknowledged by at least one side of the club's management.

The idea that this uncertainty wasn't affecting the players was patent nonsense. The fact that it has now been formally acknowledged doesn't particularly help. The way we have played in most games this season has been so poor that Moyes's personal stock has plummetted.

What now? I am truly torn. I wanted this all done and dusted and we get cracking. But now? I am tempted to believe we need new blood. Everton look stale and we need freshness. HOWEVER, given the financial situation at the club, who could we get to deliver freshness and panache (and results!)?

We are stuck in a truly miserable Catch-22. The manager (and perhaps chairman) are both culpable in the biggest waste of an opportunity for decades. From fifth to fuck-all. It's shaping up to be a disastrous season. Once confidence and motivation goes we are in Newcastle territory.

How in sweet Jesus did we ever get here?
Alan Kirwin     Posted 29/09/2008 at 09:44:56   Comments (10)

Good Football - It's not easy is it?

Over the past 6½ years, we have seen a dramatic improvement at Everton. When you break that change down, it is all about having built a far better squad and making sure the eleven on the pitch are very organised, hard to break down etc. Well, Mr Moyes, mission accomplished.... at least, until this season started.

Many fans I have seen, put the sudden decline down to Lee Carsley leaving. Much as I saw him as a key player in keeping us solid, it is foolish to believe that is the only (or even main) reason for our decline. Perhaps the lack of a Steven Pienaar on the left has been a part of our problem too. But the truth may be that our biggest problem is that our squad is evolving, being filled more with players who are crying out to play the good passing game.

In this category I would put: Arteta, Pienaar, Yakubu, Saha, Osman, Fellaini, and even Rodwell, Baxter (although still not quite ready) and Castillo. These players can put their foot on the ball, pick a pass, and most importantly, instantly move to find space to receive the ball back if necessary. Now, the problem. There may actually be a few:

1) Our defenders (Lescott, Jags and Neville particularly) receive the ball an awful lot, either from Howard or as a result of taking possession from the opposition. I would argue that they (most of the time) either pass it to each other once or twice and then "play a long ball", or they skip step one and just "play a long ball". This means our ball playing players don't even get to see the ball much.

2) On those occasions when are ball-playing players do get the ball, you can see there is rarely more than one passing option available, usually back to the defence somewhere. This means our players who are desparate to play good football are not allowed to, so they pass back or "play a long ball".

I am beginning to think I am alone in thinking that the problem must lie in the kind of training we do. Because we can't say now that we are full of battlers who grind out wins, because we are not. Surely with the right training, these mostly talented men could pass and move as well as any of the top six teams. As a good ball-playing player, you want to look up and pick the right pass out of at least 3 or 4 options.

How can it be that with few exceptions, our team of eleven players can't learn the key lessons of decent, controlled football:
- Move and create space off the ball (not just one of you, but all of you in range);
- The long ball should be the last option, not the first (unless your striker is built like that boxer Valuev).

It isn't actually rocket science. I accept I couldn't do it, but I am not the one on a fortune to manage one of the greatest teams in English footballing history, am I. The truth is I even see the Boltons, Wigans, Fulhams, West Broms, Middlesboroughs managing this with poorer players. With our squad we could be so much better if only, we could make the transition from good commitment to good football. We can still be organised whilst playing good football. It surely must all be in the training.

What a waste of a good year this season has been so far. Nevermind the contract signing issue, because we don't really know what is going on there. Sort out our footballing philosophy. Fair enough it has worked well up to now, but our squad has changed and they have different qualities, so let's make the most of them!!
Gareth  Mercer     Posted 29/09/2008 at 08:24:52   Comments (5)

A Dithering Moyes Mistake?

Thanks for all the work that goes into all of this site, I really enjoy reading all of the different views of young and old Evertonians, I always enjoy keeping on learning more and more of our history, I've only been to Goodison Park once, v Leicester, the score was 2-2 and it was around the millennium and I think we got two penalties, with Unsworth scoring them both, and I hope to go back a lot more when I can.

I've been brought up from my dad's memories really, he's from Liverpool (as I only live in Jersey) and he attended many matches and always tells me stories and our history (as Evertonians are born and not manufacturered), especially as he went to see the the European Cup Winners Cup Final in Holland in 85. I'm only 23 and I hope to see my own special memories so I can tell my children.

The reason I write here is because of my disappointment over the summer and the recent Merseyside derby. The main issue being David Moyes buying Fellaini (a supposedly young and promising footballer) for £15 million... I'm a bit worried after all the latest appearences, I don't think he looks like a naturally gifted midfielder... at all. Manuel Fernandes on the other hand looked like he had it all; passing, technique, creativity, flair, a good shot on him (Man Utd springs to mind). Given time, the stamina to see the match through, and to compare the two at the same age, who would you spend £15 million pounds on? As Moyes has said, they are supposed to play in the same role of our footballing side...

I think Moyes has seriously fucked up on this one, admittedly I don't know the truth of why David Moyes did not sign Manuel Fernandes, but surely he did have a number of chances to try and secure some kind of deal if he was in any kind interested in him.

It seems that the only thing that Fellaini offers is his height. Over time I really hope I'm wrong and it is early days, but I am worried (Krĝldrup comes to mind) but Fernandes did look far more a natural player in an Everton side.

OK we didn't sign Fernandes, but I was just wandering what other Evertonians would have preferred really, or has anyone watched this Fellaini before and can give encouragement that he may turn out to be a £15 million player..

The one thing I'm waiting for though, is the return of Steven Pienaar!! I'm sure all of you will agree on that one.
Jamie Dodds     Posted 29/09/2008 at 00:52:34   Comments (41)

Think about it...

Last season, against the relegated sides, we gathered 4 points away from home. This season against the promoted sides, 7 points. From the corresponding 3 home fixtures last season we gathered 4 points as opposed to the dismal 0 we have this season. That?s a -1 differential in the league so far.

Is it really that bad to be knocked out of the Mickey Mouse Cup with the size of our squad? Regardless of the 2nd leg result, who truly believes that we can win the Uefa Cup with the type of form we have consistently shown towards the end of each season under Moyes?

So where does that leave us? In a similar position to the last 3 seasons. An excellent first team (when fit & available) with a little depth in the squad but nothing that will trouble the top 4. Our glass ceiling is now keeping up with Villa for the automatic Uefa Cup position. I?m sure there?s some good times left this season ? fantastic goals, clever play, last minute winners. But it really won?t match fans expectations from the end of last season. Who?s fault is that?

Well, judging by the mailbag, it seems everyone from Kenwright to Carlo Nash. Personally, I?m turning the utter frustration after derby defeat to a relaxed state of ?no expectations? for the rest of the season.

I know we won?t get relegated and there?s no chance of the top 4. So, for me, each game loses a lot of importance like those last few games of the season for a mid-table team. This is guaranteed to ease my stress and I may enjoy the flashes of good football we occasionally exhibit. Oh, Everton, you?ve fucked me again!
Jerome  Esterhazy     Posted 29/09/2008 at 00:22:38   Comments (15)

Who could do better??

Given the context of a poor summer in the transfer market, ruining preseason, and the knock-on effect that has had on the start of the season, unprepared players have been expected to hit the ground running. Understandably a lot of people seem to think that it is time for Moyes (and Big Bill) to move on.

He has done his best, got us European footie, but on the whole we are frustrated at the 4-5-1 and lack of dynamic or creative football losing 2-0 to Liverpool... No more hoofball, 4-5-1s, last-minute transfer deals and giving false hopes being linked with a lot of Europe's talented footballers, please. I am pissed off with seeing one striker up front, and good players like AJ and Beattie coming in and within a year looking like mugs playing infrequently and at times out of position before being sold on with their confidence and reputation tarnished. The problem we have is that Moyes has been pretty successful with the 4-5-1 so he is unlikely to change....

So, who could do better? Given our circumstances who could come in a take Everton higher up the league playing better football?? I am not saying Moyes is best, far from it, I want to know who you think can take us forward... £3.5m a year can buy a good manager these days ? if that is what is really being offered.

I just hope no one says Kevin Keegan!!
Thomas Christensen     Posted 28/09/2008 at 21:29:38   Comments (19)

Raising the White Flag again

If we are honest we could not really have expected a great result. However, we are fully entitled to at least witness an effort? In my 60 years of watching Everton, that was probably the most pathetic white flag performance that I can remember (from either side) in a derby match. Under Moyes we seem to constantly be afraid of having a go at any of these so called " big guns" (Chelsea & the Anfield derby last season; typical).

I do not accept the excuses of lack of funds, injured & new players, nor that we have not spent the money of our neighbours, there has not been one decent performance since the Fiorentina game. Yes, Mr Moyes has got us into a better shape than we were when he arrived he has also spent & wasted lots of money. He must be at the end of the road, his whole attitude speaks for itself, surely he should have the honesty, decency & his own pride dignity to realise he does not seem capable of going any further with this club and resign NOW.

True, we may not be able to choose a new man from the top of the pile but please lets at least find someone to provide some entertainment just on some occasions. These dour defensive line-up tactics he appears to love all the time are simply not working anymore, the defensive frailties are exposed (not least the goalkeeper in my opinion, look at our goals against & no clean sheets).

Moyes's one up front tactical style has destroyed two players who scored goals for fun at other clubs, Beattie & Johnson, it is starting to look like the hat-trick with the Yak. Sorry but it is time to say BYE BYE DAVIE, you have had your chances, now YOUR TIME IS UP!!!
Royston James     Posted 28/09/2008 at 16:49:41   Comments (15)

Anil Ambani

Just reading through the soccer gossip column in today?s The People. It is being reported that billionaire Anil Ambani is preparing a £550 million takeover of the RS. Wasn?t he the bloke who was supposed to be interested in buying us? If the story is true, it will be easy for him to choose after watching yesterday?s debacle.

Bill, you are now going to have to come up with another name in your phantom list of potential buyers. My advice is, to go to The Times rich list. There is possibly some ?punter? left by now that hasn't been mentioned in a possible takeover. Then you can bluff us for another while at least.
Declan Burke     Posted 28/09/2008 at 16:30:26   Comments (14)

The moment, the man, contracts and legacies

It hasn't attracted much comment but for me the defining moment yesterday came immediately after the first RS goal. I looked across to our dugout and really wanted to see Saha on the touchline ready to come on before the restart ? plan A (defend and hope) was dead and time to move on to plan B. I should have known better ? Moyes takes an age to get any sub on and in his mind he was obviously still thinking about plan A. 2 minutes later and bang the game is over and on trots Saha ? Moyes will never never learn and will never never change and that little cameo sums him up.

In relation to his contract it would now be commercial suicide and lunacy for the club to commit up to £17m at a time when they may need to sack him within weeks. Moyes has played hard ball over the contract for months and has massively over played his hand. It is now time for the club to play hard ball and tell him that they will review the situation in January and may leave the final decision until the end of the season. Trust me this job is the biggest that Moyes will ever get (the joke league in Scotland aside) and he has no cards left to play.

When he does go (and I think it will be sooner rather than later) what legacy will he leave behind? The truth is that his only tangible legacy will be that his sucessor faces a better situation than he inherited. He won't leave any trophies, he won't leave a settled and attractive style of play and he won,t have improved the public perception of us as club which plays football in the right way.

Why do some people find it so hard to accept that everything has its time and Moyes's time is coming to an end? Don't drag it out Kenwright ? for once, don't bullshit, do the right thing and end it it in a quick and clean manner.
John Doolan     Posted 28/09/2008 at 11:05:53   Comments (57)

And moving on

We come to the Standard Liege game. As we know DM doesn't do knock out, he also doesn't do coming back from a goal down (well not very often) and with the away goals that is what we are.

Does the team and Davey have it in them to go out and attack AND win? my heart says yes, but the head say no. Does he (with a nod to Tony Marsh) even know his best 11 and what formation to play them in?

And if, as we are told, by the (seemingly decreasing number) of Pollyannas (aka apologists) that he has totally improved the Walker Walter squad of no-marks and now we have the best squad we have had for 20yrs, ffs WHY won't he let them play?

Is Fellaini the new Scott Gemmill / Li Tie??
Derek Thomas     Posted 28/09/2008 at 06:02:46   Comments (0)

Since I've been gone

I left England back in February 2008 on the back of Everton's demolition of Manchester City at Eastlands. I remember getting a bus up to London a couple of days later and the paper had a comparison chart of what games Everton and Liverpool had next. My travelling buddy (a red) and I totted up what we felt were the likely scores and had Everton to pip Liverpool to fourth...just.

My mate Gary was often banging on about how bad my timing to go travelling was, with Everton about to storm the UEFA Cup and stick around in fourth place. My mate Adam was already searching for UEFA Cup tickets. I've got to say things we're looking rather good 7/8 months ago.

Fast forward to September 2008 and you have to ask: just what is going on at Everton Football Club? I've been keeping a close eye on things here in New Zealand and I'm completely gobsmacked with what I'm seeing and reading. The summer (though the same for us all) was just a nightmare. Every day checking the internet...and nothing. From Wyness resigning to Moyes not signing...Moutinho...Tiago...I could go on and on but then we get Fellani. God I hope he improves!

I've just seen this feeble second half capitulation in the derby (I was dreading this game all day) and you have to wonder where are next result is going to come from. I hope its in Liege!

Well. I'm not one for superstition but here goes. Basically since I've been away we've been crap. A measly six wins in 18 league games. That's one third of all our games. That's 38 points in a season. That's not good enough. Nowhere near. Probable relegation in fact.

I return home next Saturday and will be attending Everton vs Newcastle United next Sunday. Given that Newcastle United are thankfully in a much bigger mess than oursevles you'd like to think that was a home banker but you just can't take that for granted anymore. Here's hoping I can bring some good fortune back with me and we can start enjoying the match again. It's gonna be good to be back...I hope.

In the words of Ken Buckley: UP THE BLUES


Paul Traill     Posted 28/09/2008 at 01:19:14   Comments (5)

Do Everton have a secret brother!!

I?ve supported Everton from a distance since the FA Cup run in 1983 when the scottish pairing of Gray and Sharp fired the Blues to glory at Wembley and kicked off the magnificient run throught the 80s. Funnily enough, I live in and support Aberdeen who are almost the Scottish mirror image of Everton having become the Scottish team of the eighties but spent most of the nineties trying to keep themselves in the Scottish Premier League and working through a merry go round of very average managers.

Like Everton, Aberdeen have spent the last few seasons challenging for Uefa Cup places one year and finishing mid table the next but throughout this time we?ve had no real relegation fears and the club is progressing. This season has started off poorly and we?re out of the Scottish League Cup after two rounds and the fans are becoming restless. The main point with both teams is that progression has been made throughout this time but with the large amounts of money flying around it will always be hard to compete with the Celtic, Rangers, Man Utd?s and Chelsea?s of this world.

Stability and a level headed approach is needed and both Davie Moyes and Jimmy Calderwood bring this to the clubs but are currently feeling the heat of the fans which in my opinion is unjustified.

Like Everton, Aberdeen are not the biggest club in the league and probably won?t win much each season if anything at all. Like Everton we?ve had good and bad times and have a proud history, I?m fully aware of the history of both clubs. Aberdeen?s gates are generally higher than the scottish leagues average apart from Celtic and Rangers and even during Fergie?s years they generally were no higher than they are now apart from the odd european game, cup final and big league game but league gates don?t make clubs big just ask Newcastle.

How do you gauge a footballing pedigree because if it?s on honours then the 1983 Cup Winners Cup Win and the 1983 European Super Cup win and the 1984 European Cup Winners Cup semi final and the 1985 European Cup quarter final probably puts Aberdeen ahead of the majority of England?s "big" clubs. I could go on!! A similar list of honours apply to Everton especially domestically when both dominated the SFA and FA cups dring the eighties.

I?ll say it once again we are Scotland?s Everton as Celtic are the Man Utd of Scotland, the similarities are frightening.
Mark Davidson     Posted 27/09/2008 at 22:11:42   Comments (2)

Yakubu

We deservedly lost, our performance in the 2nd half was woeful. We conceded 4 goals (albeit only 2 counted) within 5 minutes.

However, the game was pretty even at nil-nil with Liverpool limited to long range shots that never tested us. Just after the re-start the Yak had a great chance, he moved into the area and the defender failed to tackle, this was our real chance, our only chance and with the yak a goal was possible. BUT, he DIVES.

It was a disgrace, if he scored it would have given us a real chance to win and kick-start our season, but he dived.

There is a lot to be dissapointed about, however this has really stuck with me all day and I was wondering if anyone else thought the same.
Fran Mitchell     Posted 27/09/2008 at 19:40:46   Comments (12)

Progress stalled or reversed?

Having got up at 7:00 in US to see the match, I was hoping to see a good Evertonian performance... What followed for the first 45 minutes was tolerable, but then started the shocker... What was our defence doing? And why do we hoof the ball out of the defence all the time? This was a horrible performance. Terrible.

People will say that this happened last year too... But that's part of the problem under Moyes, last year he played the same combination, Yak up front and 2 defensive midfielders (yes Phil is a defensive midfielder in his eyes) and the same result... Worse, the same performance, hardly any fight by Everton in the midfield.

I don't want Moyes out and certainly dont think "No steps Forward, 10 steps back" but what is going on is a complete halt. Why play the exact same tactics that failed last time? And this time it was at Goodison!

It hurts to say this, but Moyes is showing why Everton is called a small club at times. At home, on the back of a crashing defeat against Blackburn, still to score a point at GP and we play 4-5-1 with 7 defensive players and Cahill as second striker.. They play a 4-3-3 with 3 forwards.

I still like Moyes, he has taken a rotting ship and stabilized it. 2 UEFA spots were really good with the icing on the cake being the 4th spot.. Last year's UEFA cup and Carling cup performances were the best I have seen since I started to follow Everton in late 90s. And to be honest, I will not be upset if we loose against SL. They are a good side and we fought back in GP (admittedly to cover our own mistakes but still a fightback).

But this performance brings to mind what Michael Schumacher had said "Making a mistake once is human, making it twice is foolish" I cant understand why Moyes, with all his motivational ability cannot learn from his mistakes!! Why do we continue to play hoof ball and 4-5-1 at home?? Why bow down to the big 4 all the times? This reminds me of how Fulham had ground Arsenal to dust in 2003, with the same tactics... Surely a 5th place should give Moyes confidence in his players...

And I think the hoofing is a cycle started by the manager.. His lack of confidence in the players started it and now the players have taken a dent too and refuse to get out of this habit..

All in all, MOYES has to learn! And learn fast! Else Everton will be a small club!
Varun Rajwade     Posted 27/09/2008 at 18:01:58   Comments (20)

No steps forward, 10 Steps back

Having just witnessed that spineless, shambles of a match, it is clear that we are in the midst of downward spiral. After a dreadfull summer of ridiculous transfer inactivity, boardroom departures and stadium uncertainty, the mood of depression has quite clearly transferred itself to our squad. If we can't raise our game on derby day, then something is fundamentally wrong.

That performance today was possibly the worst i have witnessed at Goodison for a long long time. There isn't anything that can be salvaged from a car crash like that. We may kiss goodbye to a Uefa Cup run, and while we're at it, prepare ourselves for relegation battle. AN ABSOLUTE DISGRACE, CONSIDERING THE SUPPOSED IMPROVEMENTS WE'VE BEEN MAKING OVER THE LAST 5 YEARS.

Dark times ahead...
Conor Waters     Posted 27/09/2008 at 15:36:05   Comments (49)

Could Today Get Any Worse?..........Oh Yes!!!!

I was riding my motorbike to work today happy in my thoughts that I was confident we were going to put in a good display against the Dark Side. I was stopped at a T-junction outside work when a car went straight into the back of me. When I eventually got up, to my horror it was my WIFE in the car behind!!

So I wasn't in the best of moods to start with. I get in to work (nursing a sore back) put on Sky Sports (we are lucky at work we have the full Sky package) and have to put myself through a performance of such ineptitude that I am considering riding my motorbike head on into a bus going home. If I have to witness another performance like that again I may start supporting Brighton!!!
Craig Taylor     Posted 27/09/2008 at 15:06:30   Comments (10)

Do it now, Billy!

The only thing that could possibly upset me more than what happened this afternoon is if I hear that Moyes has signed that bloody contract. Whatever the man has done to restore Everton's fortunes after the Johnson/Smith era, his time is over. He`s run out of ideas and is misusing the not inconsiderable talent he has at his disposal.

His dithering has now reached legendary proportions. He wasted the summer and he's wasted our patience whilst he niggles about minor details in a contract he should have signed in March.

Do it now, Billy. Pay the miserable git to go. For god's sake do something right for once. PLEASE!
Ivor  Marchant     Posted 27/09/2008 at 14:59:38   Comments (23)

Fellaini Sucks

Move over, Per Krĝldrup, enjoy your paid 4-year injury Van der Meyde ? we have a new grand champion for the worst money spent by Everton Football Club.

Broadcast his excuses all day, my mind is made up. The guy has promise but simply never could live up to his price tag. Keep in mind both our free signings, Castillo and Saha have been probably two of our best players on the pitch since putting on a Blue Jersey. His passing is ok, but he doesn't win many balls, and that's why we bought him, and his idea to pass forward was nice for half a game but now he passes back more than any other player it seems.

Cahill out jumps him, Osman wins more balls, and obviously Arteta has better ability and all three of them combined cost a quarter of him. Just think that Fellaini cost more than the Yak.

So why does Moyes play him? It's because he seems to have given up. The manager is poisoning our team spirit, and if he isn't and someone else is, BK, then it's still up to Moyes to keep that shit out of the players' minds. Did you see his reaction to Cahill's red? Which by the way was not a red, but we will never win an appeal. But Moyes's lack of reaction was shocking, could he show he's given up any more?

Someone fix this club, we have so much quality now, and yet, here we are. The season is fizzling, does anyone think it can be stopped?
Joey Brown     Posted 27/09/2008 at 14:39:47   Comments (66)

Pathetic

"Mikel Arteta returned from the illness" you're joking right? He's still ill, 3 corners or free kicks that can't even make it into the mix.

Where the hell is the defence, do we really have 8 players on the ground as it looks from the TV.

You know you stay up till 3am NZ time to watch this rubbish. The closest chance we get Yakubu decides to go for an Oscar - tosser. And is Fellaini a defensive midfielder or a defensive attacker - he seems lost in the role Moyes has given him.
Paul Le Comte     Posted 28/09/2008 at 14:11:36   Comments (100)

Hibbo`s back!

Not quite the news to set Everton pulses racing but Davey obviously thinks we need captain Pip to lead from the middle! Still think we may spring a surprise and grab the points ? just sorry I couldn`t get a ticket!
Terry  Burt     Posted 27/09/2008 at 12:12:41   Comments (71)

For Sale... is or isnt it ??

One question for the lads on here regarding this issue: Everton up for sale, and also Newcastle up for sale...

Just look at the difference: Ashley nearly as a buyer lined up within two weeks; every paper you read is talking about the sale of Newcastle.

Then there's Everton: NOTHING! Nothing said, wrote about, no-one interested... NOTHING!!! Is Newcastle that much bigger than us? Ashley and his cronies fly halfway round the world to meet investors while 24/7 Bill does nowt?

So the question is... ARE WE REALLY FOR SALE????
Terry  Downes     Posted 26/09/2008 at 16:56:25   Comments (6)

Moyes out!

I see from a number of threads that people are begininng to call for the head of Moyes. All I can say is keep it up, let's really start calling for his departure. One more bad result and he has to go, I say!!!!!

Everytime this happens (normally in a pre season) and you lot start saying shit like this he pulls it around and we start winning games. Moyes out? You're having a laugh.
Craig Taylor     Posted 26/09/2008 at 13:15:50   Comments (76)

Director of Football, anyone?

A current topic that won't go away is the role of Directors of Football within Premier League clubs, and the debate goes on as to whether they are good/bad, how they are best used etc... Could Everton FC / David Moyes be one of the few cases where a Director of Football might work?

Hear me out, and let me make a couples of things clear, I am NOT selling this idea as a bullet-proof solution and am NOT typically an advocate of the Director of Football ? I look at the cases of Keegan and Curbishly and can appreciate the negatives, but it must work in some instances.

If (just if) Billy Liar isn't actually lying, and funds are actually available at the start of each transfer window, plus we sell players like AJ and McFadden to add to these funds, why do we still struggle so much in the market? This pre-season isn't the first either ? Moyes has gained a reputation as a ditherer in the transfer market. We always have a bad time ? we dither, we are outbid, someone doesn't get a work-permit in time ? it can't all be "bad luck"... possibly bad infrastructure?

OK, so we know Moyes can spot a good player at very good price (Cahill, Lescott, Arteta...), but he's clearly limited in other key skills that could make us consistently successful in the transfer market. Would having someone dedicated to the task of working the transfer market be the solution? Someone highly skilled in scouting, looking after budget, allocating the money for targets, negotiating deals etc.

I know the pitfalls of a DoF have been apparent recently (manager not being in control etc), but if Moyes can have a hand in who comes in/goes out and then literally be left to the day-to-day coaching, picking the team, decisions on tactics etc, surely the results could only be positive...

Well, they couldn't get much worse... could they?
Alec Laurie     Posted 26/09/2008 at 11:55:49   Comments (5)

Time to be bold

Whatever one thinks of the shambles of the summer or of the bumper contract of David Moyes the fact is we're stuck with what we've got. So how do we turn things round? Time to be bold, I think.

Firstly in defence; Jagielka,Yobo and Lescott can't play in the same team. Lescott is a confidence player whose confidence has gone. At his best, though, he is our only defender who possesses any footballing ability, i.e. passing ability. So how to get his confidence back? Make him captain. Captains don't necessarily have to shout and bawl. Lead by example and let Phil Neville do the shouting.

Bring Valente back at left back and keep Jagielka on the bench as good cover. In midfield there's not room for Castillo and Fellaini so let Fellaini show what he's worth and keep Castillo as good cover. Give Arteta a completely free role ? to swap flanks or play through the middle. Play Osman and Cahill behind Saha and Yakubu.

Outlaw the back pass to Howard for him to hoof out of play. Have the confidence to play the ball out of defence to feet. Finally, use our subs to make sure we always play at a high tempo.

Tony Mowbray called us a "pragmatic team." Is that really how we want to be described?
Andy Crooks     Posted 25/09/2008 at 22:22:12   Comments (40)

Bill's Barclaycard

I hope Bill Kenwright paid for Fallaini with his Barclaycard as if we lose him at the airport next week he will be able to get his money back!

The lad looked lost last night as another inept defensive and midfield display put paid to the Carling Cup for another year. Screech seemed to move in straight lines and passed safe and square too often. I am sure there is more to come from him but really unless he was following orders or something was lost in translation, he's not a player taking any initiative. He and Castillo on this showing can't play together. They both rooted themselves in front of the back four and apart from Fellaini's odd forage forward to the head the ball on the edge of the Blackburn box, he did little else. I willed him to win the ball and one time there was a lovely tackle followed by a brilliant turn, we all gasped and waited for the incise through ball to Saha............shit he bent it 40 yards to the invisible man and Blackburn swept up!

I thought we lacked balance and confidence all night with just Osman and Saha showing any real quality. Vaughan tried to fight and win the ball but his increasing frustration and occasional kung fu attempts at blocking the keeper's clearances was madness. He even tried to get sent off on a couple of occasions but the ref said to him, "If I 've got to watch this shite, then you're staying too!"

The only thing I will say from a miserable night is that we have defended poorly and started slowly for a number of seasons. The Champions League season shows lots of similarities. Also last season until he introduced Carsley back into the team at Metalist, we looked vulnerable at the back. Cars is sadly missed and I just hope his expensive replacement doesn't turn out to be Krĝldrup in a Fellaini mask.
Neil  Alecock     Posted 25/09/2008 at 16:35:40   Comments (22)

All it takes...

...is a half-decent result in the derby game and Everton will be forgiven for their early exit from the inconsequential Carling Cup. After all, who wants to win a Trophy presented by our rivals' sponsor?

Those of us who look a little deeper than the score-line recognise that our team is going through a mini-reconstruction at the moment and that this, together with some uncertainty on the part of usually water-tight defenders is the reason for a slightly disappointing start to the season.

Let's face it, Davey is trying to bed in at least three players who arrived late for the campaign as well as to change the style to a more attacking format. The days of 4-5-1 are long gone and with more expansive players to choose from, formations and tactics have to be given time to evolve and reach perfection.

Like many of my fellows, I see the Premier League as all-important and should we find that competition as our only focus until after Christmas, most of us will be well content.

As I say, as long as we get at least a draw in the derby, all we again be OK in the state of Everton.
Richard Dodd     Posted 25/09/2008 at 15:41:12   Comments (35)

Farewell to Moyes?

Having watched David Moyes since the beginning of the season, does it appear that his heart is no longer in the Everton job? The only time from what I have seen is the Stoke game when he was sent to the stand for the non-penalty decision, this is the only time I have seen him show any real emotion this season.

No contract signed as of yet, out of one cup, could he go after the Uefa Cup game against Liege if the result does not go our way? I personally would like him to stay but is it a case of him thinking "I have taken this club as far as I can?" ? and would it be in the best interest of Everton Football Club?
Dan Machin     Posted 25/09/2008 at 15:41:12   Comments (42)

History repeats itself

Do you remember when Tommy Gravesen went off to Real Madrid? The team went on a downer and somehow Our Tom was accorded a status well beyond any influence he had ever exerted on his team-mates.

Well the same thing is happening with Lee Carsley. Everyone I speak to tells me how much we miss the little man and what a fool Moyes was to let him go back to his home town.

But can one man`s absence make such a negative impact on a side? I think not. Perhaps if we were missing a Brian Labone, Alan Ball or Bob Latchford (I might even say Yakubu!), the arguement might hold water but Gravesen and Carsley ? journeymen both ? I hardly think so!

The facts show that in the immediate periods before we lost these players, the cracks had already begun to appear and neither deserved the veneration subsequently accorded to them.

Of course they played a part in the club`s relative success but their particular `skills`were never central to sucess ? or failure. As far as Carsley is concerned, the wheels were coming off the cart whilst he was a regular in the much vaunted `holding`role and before him, Gravesen was ,well,just `Mad Dog`.

No, it's just too simplistic to believe the loss of these very ordinary players is the reason for our downturn in fortune. Let's face it, Moyes has never quite got the midfield right.Perhaps his favoured style, honed in the lower leagues,does not lend itself to balance or silky skills in this area.

The failure to recruit effective wide players (how we all looked to VdM!) has always meant a crowded central midfield and all too often the temptation to by-pass the lot of them in order `to hit a striker`.

I somehow suspect that most managers have moved on a bit from the patterns of yesteryear, can read how Moyes sets his stall out and have analysed the limitations of the players he sends out to do the job.

Who knows, perhaps he`s been doing it too long? But that's for another day. What I do know is that our problems amount to more than the absence of Lee Carsley!
Brian  Noble     Posted 25/09/2008 at 15:41:12   Comments (17)

Ossie

I think it's about time Leon Osman was given the credit he deserves. So often I hear apathy, or groans and moans from some sections of support whenever his name is announced on the teamsheet. While Arteta and Cahill rightly win plaudits, I think Osman has contributed almost as much to our recent successes.

Every time he gets on the ball, he is looking to create something. His touch is often sublime, he can see a clever pass or through ball that many others cant, he tracks back well, and often scores some superb and crucial goals.

He's been our best player so far this season (not saying that much, admittedly), even playing on with a troubling knee injury, and carrying on against Hull despite dislocating a finger during a piece of typically tenacious battling on the right wing.

The only thing against Leon is his stature, which he cant do anything about. I'm not suggesting he gets booed every week, I know he's very popular amongst some fans, but a lot of blues I speak to are not impressed with him, but I think he's very important to our present and future.
Nathan O'Hagan     Posted 25/09/2008 at 15:41:12   Comments (15)

Lot 1878 ? Everton FC

Historic Football club for Sale. A good family club which somehow fell into the wrong hands and has slight damage because of:

  • Debts that need clearing.
  • A ground that needs updating or even a new one building.
  • A manager that would require a new contract, along with a kick up the arse and a good telling to that 'hoofball' is not the Everton way.
  • Will also require at least a £50 million tranfer kitty each close season.

Yes it's needs work but for any multi-Billionaire, this would be a wonderful chance to own the People's Club and your very own piece of Football History. With all said work doing to, this club will again challenge all and could possibly become Premier League champions.

Offers in writing please to Bluebill@misinformation.com.

Thanks and good luck.
Sean Thompson     Posted 25/09/2008 at 15:41:12   Comments (6)

Steve Round

The poor standard (as compared to that of last season) of defending could be due in part to a change of emphasis coincident with the arrival of Steve Round. I don't think he did a very good job at Newcastle. Again tonight, some of the defenders were not sure of themselves, certainly I think Yobo looks confused beyond belief and there's is a distinct lack of leadership back there. Better get it sorted by the weekend.
Michael Greaves     Posted 24/09/2008 at 22:17:50   Comments (35)

One down....

Well, one down, two cups to go. It will probalby be two down next week, because I can't see us getting a sniff at Liege. We had enough out there tonight to turn Blackburn over, it just doesn't make sense, why have we been so shite this season?

Listening on radio Merseyside, the lads got booed off, which isn't going to help them going into derby game, but if you're paying good money to watch that shite, I reckon the fans who travelled have every right to show their disgust.

Roll on the excuses.
Brian  Waring     Posted 24/09/2008 at 21:54:25   Comments (59)

We need to talk about David

No contract signed despite a £17M offer, players rejected as not good enough for him, the Board blamed for not releasing funds early enough in the summer when the funds were not there.

These are the facts of our manager's behaviour. He is now about one thing: David Moyes. He is a carrer man ...remember, 'one day I'd like to manage an Old Firm team?' He feels he cannot take the club further without getting money we have not got. Yet, take the Cardiff lad out of the Arsenal team that beat Sheff Utd 6-0 last night and the cost of that impressive young squad is next to nothing. That is down to quality management. We are losing again, tonight. It is time we talked about David.
Ged  Alexander     Posted 24/09/2008 at 21:34:16   Comments (46)

Match Ticket Selling Methods

Today, whist travelling home I received a call from a very nice lady who asked me, ''Would like to buy tickets for the Newcastle game before they sell-out''. How bad do the club need my money for people to now ring the fans asking if they are going to come to games?

If there was any evidence it was going to be a sell-out then I am also sure they would not be calling me. I was in two minds whether this was a prank call or not; however, a friend of mine also said he was called and fed the same line.
Andy Walls     Posted 24/09/2008 at 20:33:55   Comments (10)

Destruction Derby

Now I know that the atmosphere on Saturday will be rocking but I'm writing this post to urge everyone attending to give that extra bit of vocal support. Not only at the start but during the warm up, when the kopites are trying to sing let's drown those kopite bastards out, during half time, when were under pressure, if we have just conceeded (let's hope not). Also let's get behind the lads regardless of sloppy passses or yet another long aimless ball played by pip.

Let's shout for every decision and roar with all we have whenever we are attacking and on top. Let's bring as many flags and banners as possible and lets make this derby one which will lift the team and give us great memories of the day Goodison rocked once again and sent the Liverpool players and fans packing back across Stanley Park knowing that they have been beaten on AND off the park by the GREATEST team and fans in Liverpool. I look forward to Saturday and being apart of such a great day. COYB!!
Johnny Bell     Posted 24/09/2008 at 14:33:36   Comments (13)

John Paul Kissock

At a time when Everton are crying out for a bit of width, why hasn't this lad been given a chance?

He did well on loan in the SPL, he's a set-piece taker, and he's been the subject of bids from Man City and Chelsea.

Is there anyone who may know, or at least have theories, on why he hasn't been given a chance above say, Jose Baxter, who is younger, less physically developed and less experienced?
Geoff Edwards     Posted 24/09/2008 at 12:14:49   Comments (25)

Blackburn vs Everton

Well... What can we expect from tonight?

We've been up and down so far this season. The easy has ended up being tough, and the tough, ended up being annoyingly difficult.

Will we be able to reverse the score in our first game of the season, and keep up our generally decent away form? And POSSIBLY pull off a winner this evening? And who will we have to help us? Who do you think will make the starting line-up?

  • Howard (will he play? virus?) or NASH
  • Neville
  • Jagielka
  • Yobo (recovered enough?) or Lescott
  • Baines (as we've been told, is starting)
  • Arteta
  • Fellaini
  • Castillo
  • Cahill
  • Saha (starting birth?)
  • Yak
Will there be any tv coverage available ANYWHERE? Or is the Carling Cup that unimportant? Is Everton TV even screening the game?

I guess we can only wait and see...
Mike Coates     Posted 24/09/2008 at 10:41:57   Comments (182)

Fair Play, Robert Elstone

i noticed that Robert Elstone is to meet up with some of the KEIOC lot to discuss potential other sites within the city boundary. I think this is a minor breakthrough for KEIOC. Let's just wait and see if he actually listens or if it's a publicity stunt.....
Craig Ashford     Posted 24/09/2008 at 09:16:44   Comments (7)

Stubbsy's back!

Signed as a coach.

Stubbsy lad, bring your boots on saturday, you can clearly STILL do a job for us...

I'd feel a lot better with a retired Stubbs at the back this weekend than our current crew, that's for sure!
Jeremy Benson     Posted 23/09/2008 at 18:40:09   Comments (13)

Tonight I wish we were Man City!

Sky have just announced that the Manchester City take-over by the Arabs has been completed.

I can't help but be envious. There they are with a mega-rich owner, a cracking manager, Brasil's finest players and publicity to die for. Here we are with a luvie-duvie owner, a boring manager, Phil bloody Neville and never a mention in a national newspaper!

Forgive me if I'm pissed off but I'm fucking jealous ? and I know I ain't the only one!
Tony Clemson     Posted 23/09/2008 at 18:23:43   Comments (21)

Mike Riley - Derby Ref

Having watched the Chelsea v Man U game on Sunday, and having read and listened to the comments regarding Mr Riley's performance, I was horrified to see he's been appointed as the ref for this weekends derby match. 20 yellow cards in 4 games!!

Have the people at the referees association and the PL completely lost the plot? Surely this decision confirms it.

I thought Clattenberg was poor last year but I'm not going to drag that up, but surely someone in authority was watching the match as well and realised he had an absolute shocker. He booked players for no reason and I'm really concerned about what is likely to happen in the atmosphere of a derby match.

Normally if you have a shocker at work you'd expect to get a rollicking or something else.... not handed another opportunity to make more mistakes on live tv.

I'll be watching the game this weekend praying for three things. One, our defence plays like they did last season and not like strangers. Two, if one of our defenders scores a goal it's in the back of Liverpool's net and not our own, and three, the match is decided by the ability and skill of the players ? not the incompetence of the official.
Martyn  Valentine     Posted 23/09/2008 at 13:34:47   Comments (21)

UEFA Cup...Is it worth the effort ?

I would like to pose the question... Is the UEFA Cup realy worth being in? I only ask as it seems to me to be a lot of effort for not a lot of return.

Firstly, taking the financial side of it into account, the winners of the Uefa Cup receive only £2.1 million as opposed to the £33.9M given to the CL winners. I understand that there are gate receipts to be taken into account but, even so, it seems a paltry return for such a large effort. Which raises the next point...

Does playing in the Uefa Cup put an unnesassary strain on the squad in the domestic league? Our squad as a whole is already very small, so is it worth risking injury and having players sidelined for league games, possibly proving detrimental to our final position in the league?

Is it not more important to channel all our efforts into trying to secure a top 4 finish thus giving us entry to the CL where the big money is?

I know that playing in a European competition is good for the fans and can give good entertaiment.

However, given the club's current situation in relation to finances and ability to compete successfully with the squad we have, given the money on offer in this competition, is it all really worth it?
Martin Trent     Posted 23/09/2008 at 12:47:32   Comments (38)

The Keith Harris Connection

Just been reading on the BBC Football site that Mike Ashley has "appointed London-based investment bank Seymour Pierce to handle the sale of the club. The chairman of Seymour Pierce is Keith Harris, who was involved in selling Chelsea to Roman Abramovich in 2003. He also advised in the takeovers of Aston Villa by Randy Lerner and Manchester City by Thaksin Shinawatra."

I also remember last week that whilst trawling through the minutes of the EGM, Bill Kenwright mentioned something about some guy called 'Keith' who was looking for a buyer for him. Was he talking about this guy?

If it is, then why was there absolutely NO mention of Mr Harris being instructed by BK to find a buyer in ANY media outlet? I know Everton FC aren't exactly top of the media radar at the moment but surely some news of this importance would have surficed in the Nationals at some point? I don't live in Liverpool so it may have been 'big news' in the Post or Echo a while ago perhaps?
Lee Smith     Posted 23/09/2008 at 06:27:32   Comments (15)

Yak and formations

During recent games I have been increasingly aware that Yakubu's work rate is almost zilch. I can't remember the last time we had a forward who was less mobile. A lot was made about it when he first arrived and it was widely publicised that he would have to adopt the team ethic of working hard. However as the goals arrived and this seems to have been forgotten about.

I attended yesterday's game and it was evident that he barely gets past a trot to close players down and offers little off the ball running when in possession. When Saha came he demonstrated how forward play should be, his movement was superb whether he was darting in behind or showing for the ball. Vaughan and Saha as a combination would offer far more in terms of movement and work rate.

I am not suggesting we drop Yakubu because clearly we couldn't manage without the Yak's goals but I think Moyes needs to get canny with him and point out that Vaughan and Saha would offer more to the team. The rest of the team is entitled to more from him in terms of effort. I think it is especially relevant as we were effectively playing 4-4-2 yesterday (even in the first half Cahill was playing off the Yak). With less numbers in midfield defending really needs to start from the front or we will get exposed.
Carl Rutherford     Posted 22/09/2008 at 16:25:48   Comments (37)

The price of shirts!?!

Just looking around on the Everton website, and thought I'd take a look at this season's home top... I almost had a heart attack when I saw the price! £45 for short sleeve and £50 for long. Now I admit I have a memory like a sieve, but I'm sure last season's were £35 ? thats nearly a 29% mark up.

I became curious if this was on a par with other clubs; I checked Fulham, Arsenal and Man Utd... all were £5 cheaper. Now I know a fiver doesn't seem much, but we're the most expensive in the league, and it's not like there's any justification for this. I had all 3 tops last season; I won't be doing that again... Anyone got any ideas why we're so expensive? The Kirkby £78M has got to come from somwhere I guess....
Craig Ashford     Posted 22/09/2008 at 15:18:44   Comments (30)

Everton exclusive?

I read that the Arabs who will, tomorrow, hand over £200M for Man City are already talking to the local council about a further £450M deal to buy out the City of Manchester Stadium and the land surrounding it.

Now, with Bill Kenwright taking all those phone calls from would-be suitors day and night, I can`t believe that any self-respecting Sheik wouldn`t have had a word in our owner`s shell-like before forking out £650M for the Manchester Also-Rans. After all, wouldn`t you rather be going head to head with the bankrupts who run our neighbours than having to challenge the might of Man Utd? God, for that sort of money they could have made Bill a rich man, paid off all our debts and built us our own Field of Dreams anywhere in Liverpool!

Strange... very strange. They either had never heard of Everton (which I somehow doubt), got the bums rush from Bill, or ?more likely ? found that that bloody exclusivity agreement prevented him doing any kind deal until the outcome of the Inquiry was known.

Talk about an albatros?That Ancient bloody Mariner had nothing on Our Bill, did he?
Brian  Noble     Posted 22/09/2008 at 13:17:50   Comments (54)

Leighton Baines and our defence.

He was purchased from Wigan for £5M a hell of a lot of money by our standards. At the time I wasn?t quite sure but left backs are hard to come by, he?s pacy and young so overall I thought he was a good buy. But since then he?s never really figured at all. Cameo appearances here and there and injuries have certainly curtailed his first team progress.

But after Lescott's schizophrenic performance against Liege where he was blatantly earmarked as our weakest link the stage was set for Baines to come in and make the position his own. Yet after 45min against newly promoted Hull, he gets replaced. Tactical? Or had Moyes seen enough in that 45min to think no thanks?

So what?s wrong with our defence? Our defence plain and simple is in crisis. We ship 3 goals against Blackburn and Pompey and conceded against WBA, Stoke and Hull of all teams. Our defence as a unit looks nervy uncertain and demoralised. This seems to have spread across the whole back four and now our keeper. High punts into the box which should be dealed and be bread and butter for the likes of Yobo and Jags are now causing mass panic.

What's most frustrating is that apart from two goals all the goals we have conceded in the Premier League have been due to individual errors and players switching off at key moments. Yobo has always been prone to have a brain fart and Jags is a confidence player. Whilst Lescott seems to be just plain and simply unhappy. I look at Lescott and I sense no joy at all. That leaves Neville as our most solid consistent defender.

Nuno valente is slow and solid and to be honest not prem class hence why he warms the bench more often than not. Then we have Hibbert a great old fashioned defender but lacking pace and distribution skills to hurt teams on the break.

Given our defensive crisis the omission of Baines still puzzles, why not give him a few games not 45 min. If Moyes thinks hes not good enough then he must cut his losses. At the end of the day if Baines cant get a look in now with our defence playing so badly then when will he?

Or is our problem really just down to Carsley? I think Carsley as a player may be replaced but carsley the man wont be. He was almost like a father figure to the squad always talking, always having a laugh, always organising and bollocking. It's almost like the glue that held it all together has gone.
Daniel Johnson     Posted 22/09/2008 at 10:57:54   Comments (29)

Rotation, rotation, please!

With the Carling Cup the least inspiring of the domestic competitions, Wednesday`s fixture at Blackburn will give David Moyes the chance to 'rotate' some of his players. With Tim Howard currently displaying all the reasons why Sir Alex rejected him, we should see a debut for Carlo Nash. A mere glance at this gloveman`s record indicates he is a "journeyman`s journeyman" but Moysey felt he was good enough for Prem football so we may get a clue as to whether he was right.

I also expect the so far overlooked Valente to be given a call whilst Rodwell and Baxter may well have the chance to gain more experience in the midfield area. Two games in a week is probably expecting too much of Saha at this stage of his rehabilitation and forward duties will probably be left to Yak and Vaughan although Victor will undoubtedly figure if he is sufficiently recovered.

Whilst the manager will undoubtedly get lots of stick if it all goes pear-shaped, I think that with such slim resources we should cut him some slack if he chooses to rotate. After all, who will give a stuff about the Carling if a full-strength Everton turn over Liverpool this weekend?
Trevor  Miller     Posted 22/09/2008 at 09:30:58   Comments (21)

Uneasy

Does anyone else share my concern that we are apparently about to pay David Moyes £3½M a year? I admire DM, he's stabilised the club (when he came we were "crisis club " Everton). But... he 's essentially a safety first coach and unless he continues to develop considerably I think he falls short of being a great coach. For that amount of money we could choose from the very best.
Andy Crooks     Posted 22/09/2008 at 09:36:13   Comments (64)

Own Goals

Can we PLEASE stop shipping own goals!!! That's three out of our back four who have scored own goals already this season and the 6th game (including European games) hasn't finished yet!!

It must be due to lack of communication. We didn't suffer with it last season so why are we now?

Come on guys, sort it out!!!!
Anthony Hawkins     Posted 21/09/2008 at 16:11:30   Comments (44)

Hull City Game

Does anyone know of any likely internet streams of today's game? Or, if you discover one, please post link here - I'm stuck in work and the Arabian satellite is not working!
Alex  Kociuba     Posted 21/09/2008 at 10:48:25   Comments (69)

Stadium a side-show?

Having waded through the published `Pre Inquiry Meeting Notes', I could find no mention of a new stadium and its relevance to the Planning Application. Did I miss something, or is the inclusion of the proposed new ground now viewed as an irrelevant sideshow to the provision of shops in the centre of Kirkby?

I noticed also that KEIOC were not one of the so called `Rule 6 `parties from whom evidence was to be heard-is this a technicality or have the pressure group been sidelined?
Harry Meek     Posted 21/09/2008 at 10:22:13   Comments (1)

I almost choked on my cornflakes

When reading that AJ in an interview seems to think they play the beautiful game down at Fulham, rather than longball at Everton. He clearly hasn't been there very long... As for talking about quality players that he is playing alongside now such as Danny Murphy and Simon Davies... It really doesn't do him any favours.

Well AJ, truth be known it never made me smile when we signed you, and I even bet that you would never score 20 in a season playing for us, ever. I won.
Jeremy Benson     Posted 20/09/2008 at 14:55:41   Comments (22)

Mixed signals?

By rescinding John Terry's red card, the FA showed beyond shadow of doubt that it was biased in favour of Sky 4 clubs. It seems that players from those clubs are allowed to wrestle opponents to the ground and heaven help any referee who thinks otherwise.

Terry committed as deliberate a cold-blooded cynical display of bad sportsmanship as we are likely to see this year and got off scot free. One of our very best referees was demoted to the lower divisions. Also, why no action against the usual suspects including that well known dissenter Ashley Cole who disputed the referee's decision?

Clattenberg and Halsey were demoted for opposite reasons, one for not taking action the other for taking it. Because the FA is not fully supporting their referees, is it any wonder that respect for all levels of authority is at an all-time low.
Dick Fearon     Posted 19/09/2008 at 22:58:09   Comments (10)

Has Moyes got Solutions?

Two things have been bothering me all day, which I feel that if the manager does not address quickly we will have a long and troublesome season.

1. Arteta "wasted" perhaps as many as a dozen corners in last season?s home game v Fiorentina when we had them on the rack. He was not much better last night from the dead ball. Is there no one else capable of taking a corner?

2. So far this season our defence has been very poor, conceding 9 goals in 4 games against such luminaries as Stoke, Portsmouth, Blackburn and West Brom, averaging 2.25 goals per game. Last season we conceded 33 in 38 league games (Sky 4 accounted for 12), an average of .87 goals per game. My own view is that Carsley has been a huge loss, however he could not go on forever and Moyes will have to come up with a solution before we come up against the ?big boys?...
William Burke     Posted 19/09/2008 at 19:35:28   Comments (16)

The good, The bad and Tim Howard

First statment i would like to make is 'Thank heavens for Segundo' ? I think his solid performance (and goal) is what stopped us from being totally screwed over by Leige (as well a Mikey who had an awesome game apart from his crosses)

The good, is that we still have a fighting chance of beating Leige over the two legs; the bad is that we, defensively, were quite frankly shite! Their first goal you would get a bollocking for a Sunday League team, the second was unfortunate but avoidable. The Yak and Segundo's goals were both fantastic.

Finally we have Tim Howard, who i personally thought was crap, not just against Leige but also against Stoke. The Stoke game, he refused to get off his line to come and catch / clear the long throw-ins from Delap, resulting in Jagielka scoring a own goal; then against Leige he again refused to come off his line to simply scoop up a free ball resulting in Yobo scoring a own-goal. I see a pattern emerging...

I think the Leige own-goal was the biggest sickner as there wasn't a single red shirt in our box, he could have called for Yobo to leave it and simply picked it up. First off, I think he needs to work on his communication skills, it shouldn't be too difficult as his first language is English even if its a slightly modified version. Secondly he needs to stop this love affair with his line. Even my old man noticed it, and he supports the shite. So has limited knowledge of football.

I think a Janurary transfer needs to be a decent 'keeper. Not that Tim Howard can't be, he's just inconsistent. But it would keep him on his toes, he would know that couldn't just walk into the first team, but instead had to fight for it.
Craig Ashford     Posted 19/09/2008 at 19:01:17   Comments (4)

By the way, which one's Pink?

Just to let everyone know, the Pink shirt is back.

It looks like a very limited release again, so it doesn't look as though the club have heeded last year's experience. At least this time a £5 deposit should secure your shirt.

Get them while they're hot folks. They'll be gone before you know it.
Mark Wynne     Posted 19/09/2008 at 19:00:19   Comments (9)

Castillo and Liege

I was at the game last night, and of course we were our own enemy at the game, because if we had our defence in the form of last season, we would have won the game 2-0 easily.

A bright player was Castillo though, he scored an excellent goal, he broke up play well, and other than one awful pass, passed generally well too.

To sum up, on the Everton website, with regards to the away game against Liege, he said this:

"It is going to be a tough ask but it could be easier over there. They like to attack on the counter but at home they may be more obliged to go forward if they are at home."

I agree, because to be honest, Liege didnt impress me that much, Dalmat played well, and their strikers were very, very good but other than that, they wernt that impressive! I think Liege play to their strengths at counter attacking football, and if we get our defense sorted (please God, we have to!!) we can beat them.

I mean, I think Metalist Kharkiv were a better Standard than Liege!
Ben Jones     Posted 19/09/2008 at 13:59:13   Comments (27)

Alan Smith

"Newcastle midfielder Alan Smith could be sidelined for three months after being told he needs surgery to repair a stress fracture".

Someone mentioned on here a week or so ago that Everton only seam to get the bargain buys because they are crocked, so WHY did we want to sign Smith if it was unlikely he would play again until 2009?

January anyone?
Brett Bradshaw     Posted 19/09/2008 at 14:51:28   Comments (8)

Baffled

I'm just trying to figure out what's happened.

From being one of the pPrem's best defenses last year to what appears like one of the worst so far this season seems strange. Obviously players have dips in form but but three all at once? It could be that's all it is, Lescott blowing hot and cold, Yobo and Howard blowing mainly cold and our new Carsley hasn't had time to bed in yet.

But I wonder if all the mysterious goings on behind the scenes have affected the players' confidence. Deadline day dramas, Wyness's resignation, Moyes's unsigned contract, EGMs and the call in ? if you couple this with the fans' disappointment and frustration, it's enough to affect even the most consummate professional. It seems we've gone from a tight ship to a colander overnight.

Or am I reading too much into it?
Ste Blundell     Posted 19/09/2008 at 11:15:07   Comments (28)

Friends of the Earth

It seems Friends of the Earth are campaigining to prevent out-of-town supermarkets like Destination Kirkby. They are petitioning Hazel Blears and I think it might be a good idea for the KEIOC brigade to back the FOE campaign here. Fighting for different causes but both want the same result.
Robbie Muldoon     Posted 19/09/2008 at 09:50:04   Comments (3)

So now we know!

It was all about the money. What a surprise! The Everton manager can't wait to sign a new contract now his Buddy-Buddy Bill has seen the light and given him the extra £10k a week he was hanging out for!

Just a few weeks ago, he managed to get the deal up to £3M a year and we all wondered why he didn't sign the papers... "He's worried about the transfer kitty," we said. "No, he's waiting to see if Bill sells up," said a few. "It's all about DK," was another view.

In truth, we were all wrong. Really, we should have known. It was all about the money. It always is in this game which is slowly going bankrupt as it struggles to meet the ever increasing demands of players and their managers.

However much Premier League clubs get from their TV masters, these central characters will ensure they spend twice as much... and the Great God Moyes is just like the rest of them.

People's Club, my arse! Mine, mine, mine... The Ginger one says now. For the first time in my life, I'm actually sorry for Blue Bill. But we should have known all along ? I ask you: who gets out of bed for less than £70 grand a week these days???
Brian  Noble     Posted 19/09/2008 at 09:17:36   Comments (30)

50,000? You're having a laugh

It was a lovely day yesterday and I left work early for a few beers in town awaiting our big European nigh... well, sadly not enough felt the same way.

I text a few of my mates about this too; I had spent the day arguing for tickets for them for the away leg and yet some of them could not be arsed with the home leg so the excuse of being skint was a load of shit in my book. It was £25 in and £15 for kids which was quite a fair price but yet the attendance was in my book pathetic. The red shite take the piss and who can blame them?

It brought me on to the thought of our new stadium in Kirkby ? how on earth does anyone think we can generate an extra 20,000 blues in an area which is likely to encourage more blues to take the casual stance, similar to what was taken last night, especially people from the Wirral and North Wales, whose transport problems will increase dramatically.

And as for the corporate shout, well take a look at our local papers and see the desperate advertisements for the cheap offers and yet we still cannot sell them.
Paul  Gladwell     Posted 19/09/2008 at 08:13:29   Comments (13)

Lescott

Lescott is a fantastic player and had a great season last but IMHO he has looked really shaky and I think it would be a good idea if he spent a few games on the bench to give him a kick up the ass!!! I know Moyes is very loyal to his players but the defence needs a good shake up and some time on the bench might make Lescott realise he can't ride on last season's performances.
Yusuf Bobat     Posted 18/09/2008 at 22:46:56   Comments (83)

Reality of Expectation

Before we kick a ball in this year's Uefa Cup, it seems pertinent to ask, "How far can we go?"

There's no doubt we had a great run last year, losing only one game and beating the eventual winners Zenit St Petersburg. But that's no guarantee we can produce anything like those results this season.

Through prevarication (his or the Board's?), David Moyes was extremely late getting getting his troops all mustered this time round ? and injuries have not helped his cause either. In fact, it is likely that only one 'new face' will make tonight`s line-up and several of the old brigade may be missing too.

At last Sunday's game at Stoke, several inveterate travellers told me they did not expect to be travelling widely in Europe this season as Moyes was likely to see domestic consolidation as his first priority. Certainly our uncertain start to the season will make hanging on to a top six spot extremely difficult, particularly as Villa seem to have 'bought better' in the summer. Having said that, I can't imagine we shall see Davey "doing a Megson" and easing us out of the global game to concentrate on matters nearer to home....

So can we, should we, go all-out for European glory? Or,as many would have it, focus the main effort on the Prem and national cups?

The fact that we face one of the teams relegated from the Champions League makes it 'a hard ask' but Personally I shall be crying in my beer if we don`t make it to the group stages. Am I expecting too much?
Martin  Thompson     Posted 18/09/2008 at 11:10:53   Comments (83)

Standard Liege ? Rabbits or Lions?

I have to say I am probably the most nervous I have been before a match for sometime. This game is huge, for the club, player and the fans. Standard are a very good side. They competed very well against Liverpool in both legs of the CL qualifier and there is no doubt in my mind that an unbiased observer would say that they deserved to go through the tie on merit.

What concerns me is which Everton will show up tonight ? the rabbits in the headlights of Villarreal, Dinamo Bucharest and to a lesser degree Metallist Kharkiv, or the lions of Fiorentina?

On the plus side we are a much stronger team mentally with more experience of European football. I think Moyes will keep it tight and play 4-5-1 - with Cahill supporting Yak. Watch out for Dalmat on the opposition side ? he was superb on the break against Liverpool. Let's get behind the boys tonight and hope for the best ? COYB !
Keith Wood     Posted 18/09/2008 at 08:27:49   Comments (10)

Blankety Blank! Top prize on offer!

"The FA have to do their job, I have to do my job, I had my opinion at the time. The referee has since contacted me ? that conversation will remain private ? and that is it.

"We have a Respect campaign that is really important but you can?t just put a big label on it. You earn respect and I have to say the referee has earned a great deal more respect from me by what he has said from me."

Top drawer quote from Moysie, but can you guess what it was Mr Wiley said?

Keith Hackett's job is the prize for the funniest response!
Alan Clark     Posted 17/09/2008 at 23:29:43   Comments (8)

Warren Bradley

Last night, I briefly caught a programme on telly about redeveloping down trodden areas of towns and cities. As I was about to go out, my ears pricked up when I heard the host (not sure who), mention he was off to Toxteth in Liverpool and had asked that Everton season ticket holding Councillor Bradley to take part and see just what can be done for that said area.

Our hero wasted no time in informing his audience he was a brave firefighter in the part of the city and it has always been his dream to see all the years of neglect put right (much in the same way he has been fighting for a new Goodison, I suppose). Anyway, when all the public and local constuction developers turned up to see just what could be achieved, only one person was missing.... yes, you guessed it...Mr B.

I can't really comment much more on this as I had to leave the comfort of my house for the joy that is Tesco's (how ironic, but nevertheless true!), so I was wondering if anyone out there could shed some light on what happened next, as in this day and age of respect and honesty, I would like to know if this devout Evertonian is indeed the helpful man he proclaims to be.
Alan Reddish     Posted 17/09/2008 at 20:59:15   Comments (9)

Football forums and freedom of speech

I noticed this opinion piece in today's Guardian newspaper by the regular columnist George Monbiot. Monbiot is normally interested in social justice / green issues / politics / economic issues.

This piece is having a pop at class divisions and the law, but what interests me is the story within the story - how Sheffield Wednesday utilised UK libel laws to try to silence fans who were critical of the club often in a sarcastic, jokey and offhand manner. I.e. In not dissimilar ways to what many of us have done frequently on here.

I thought I'd flag up the piece and try and get some comment on how we think it would affect ToffeeWeb and some of the topics discussed if Everton decided to have a pop at the people...
Andy Morden     Posted 17/09/2008 at 20:23:34   Comments (11)

Moon could have been the answer

During the January transfer window, Bryce Moon speculated that he would love to join Everton, but that fell on deaf ears. This player was earmarked to be the next best modern defender. As usual he wasn't good enough to be a Toffee. At the time he played for Ajax Cape Town (Pienaar's old club) and would have costed us less than 1 million pounds.

This player was one of the best attacking defenders during the AFCON in Ghana. Panathinaikos signed him from Ajax Cape Town, now the player is playing the best football ever in the Champions League. This was the only player José Mourinho's side had problems with last night.

It looks like two of the "big Sky four" are rumoured to make a January swoop for this player. Why do we always miss out on great players and stick to the Nevilles?
Ricardo Humphries     Posted 17/09/2008 at 15:17:25   Comments (1)

Newcastle, Investment and Everton

Regarding the situation at Newcastle at the moment, I feel there are two main issues there and one that has a direct correlation to Everton.

Firstly I believe the behavour of Newcastle fans towards Mike Ashley is completely out of order. For some reason they hold Kevin Keegan in the highest regard, and seem to be a Keegan supporter rather than a Newcastle supporter. I doubt we would be so eagerly wanting the reappointment of Kendall or Joe Royle if Moyes ever left us.

I think that Ashley hired Keegan initally due to overwhelming supporter pressure and this was the wrong decision anyway. Ignoring anything about Dennis Wise (who I think was brought in because Ashley never fully trusted Keegan), I think that any mid-table club should be more than happy with an owner who is willing to drastically reduce debt and give £20 million a year (plus player sales etc i imagine) to fund new players. In fact, I would be happy if we had an owner who could provide us with that sort of money.

The second issue here, and the issue that all this has led to, is that Ashley put the club 'up for sale' and almost immediately there is a very public interest from a multi-billionaire.

If Everton were truely interested in investment then it appears that getting it isn't that hard. We can assume that Everton are holding out for the perfect investor who has the club's best interests at heart, but I think that it is increasingly unlikely that this mythical person is out there. So eventually we must take a gamble. As long as we have someone in the club (such as Kenwright) to act as an advisor or someone to make sure nothing is done that results in disasterous long-term problems, it should be a fairly risk-free gamble.

Finally, having read Ashley's statement, I think he is possibly one of the best chairmen to have. He loved football and the club and was willing to back the club financially without playing with its future. If Ashley is still interested in football after Newcastle, I for one would welcome him to Goodison with open arms.
Phil Armstrong     Posted 17/09/2008 at 01:50:12   Comments (46)

A crystal ball

This time next year where will Everton be? Well, here's my prediction.

Kirkby will get the go ahead. BK will sell to a moderately rich investor and will remain as chairman. He will pocket a substantial amount and will tell us he had no choice and he has done what was necessary to keep the club afloat. The fan base will be more divided than ever and there will be a season ticket boycott.

On the pitch we'll miss out on Europe and Lescott will be gone.

Now, I don't want to sound like a totally miserable sod, so here's the good news. Saha will be the new Andy Gray. The Premier League bubble will have burst and we'll be one of the survivors. Finally, we will win a cup and it will be the sweetest ever.
Andy  Crooks     Posted 17/09/2008 at 00:50:46   Comments (20)

Paranoid

Somehow I knew it was going to happen and it's been confirmed the case. John Terry has had his red card overturned by the FA.

Now people may say fair enough it wasn't a red. However, the FA can't downgrade red cards to yellow cards so Chelsea would have to prove that it wasn't even a booking (which it blatantly was ? it was cynical). The FA even confirmed this in a statement on Sunday night.

Yet now the FA have gone against their stubborn disciplinary procedures and overturned it. Usually they would increase the ban if the appeal is rejected which should have been the case here.

As Evertonians (as have lots of other clubs) we're had our fingers burnt before over appealing red cards. In fact Moyes has openly admitted that there's no point appealing as we'll only get it increased.

Call me paranoid but the reasons they've got a result are as follows;-

1) They're moneybags Chelsea
2) They're a top 4 side
3) They just happen to be playing Man United on the TV next game
4) He's England captain

I am totally disgusted and appalled by this decision and it once again proves that, aside from the money some clubs have got, the Premier League is by no way a level playing field and the FA have once again shown total favouritism to the top four clubs.
Brian Lawlor     Posted 16/09/2008 at 14:23:32   Comments (27)

Interesting stat ? we're still 5th in 2008.

Not really a pressing matter but just a remarkable statistic. I was a bit surprised when I read the Premier League table, based on games played in 2008, in this link:

We're still 5th, despite our average start of the season and the collapse towards the end of last season! Since we only won 2 of our 9 last league games last season and didn't start particularly well this season I'd expected us a bit lower. The table shows that Spurs haven't improved at all since Jol left and that the Barcodes are in complete shambles, but we all knew that already.
Erik Dols     Posted 16/09/2008 at 13:25:46   Comments (8)

Collision course

With stories gathering pace that Moyes is getting close to signing his contract, and further stories developing that Ambani is looking to invest in Everton, are we on collision course for a double dose of seriously good news??

If we turn over Hull next week, get Moyes to sign on the dotted line and secure investment from Ambani?. I might well piss my pants. I might even contact a few charities and raise some money for my efforts.

The next Premier League fixture after the Hull game is of course?.. the derby. Can you imagine the atmosphere?
Peter Laverty     Posted 16/09/2008 at 12:06:42   Comments (15)

Language Barrier

I wrote a letter to this site the day after we signed Castillo to highlight the appalling job that the translator was doing in conveying the sentiments of our new man in his first interview, and offered to provide a real translation of the interview. Obviously there were more important things going on that week and many people were secretly wishing for us to suddenly need a Portuguese translator, so my post never made it.

However, now that the window is closed and two of the new signings have had a run-out, I was struck by Moyes's comment about the language barrier and the need to get the right translators in. Why do Everton not have people already in place for this important task of helping players to communicate with each other? We seem to be off the pace in everything we do at the moment.

I know they say football is an international language and that once you've learnt "mine", "square it", "back post" and the all important "pass it, you fuckwit", then you're set but it might help these lads to settle in if they can communicate.
Daniel Marfany     Posted 16/09/2008 at 10:51:40   Comments (7)

DK derailed by credit crunch?

I work in the City (Canary Wharf, actually) and yesterday was the most traumatic in my (albeit short) career. By lunchrime the bars were full of guys and gals with tell-tale boxes (they seem to have replaced the sack!) trying to drown the sorrows of instant unemployment.

One guy I spoke to told me he had covered the retail sector for Lehman's and had seen it coming. All the supermarkets are cutting back on expansion plans as the credit crisis begins to hit them and he mentioned two major schemes Tesco had put on ice AFTER THEY OBTAINED PLANNING APPROVAL.

So, even if the forthcoming Inquiry results in the go-ahead for DK, it will be no certain indication that work will ever begin. If this happens, as I'm sure it will, does it mean that Everton will still be held to that damned exclusivity agreement or will they be free to shop around?

If ever an Indian billionaire was needed.............
Harvey Elliott     Posted 16/09/2008 at 09:33:06   Comments (18)

Silent majority

I am a relative newcomer to ToffeeWeb. I have been following the debates/contributions for a few months. The great leaders TM and RD (you know who they are) periodically shell each other over their entrenched positions regarding BK and Kirkby. They have their own trusty lieutenants and followers and employ skilled logistical support in the way of financial and business experts to support their respective claims.

Absolute truths are at play here ? BK is either an honourable, decent man doing the best he can, or a charlatan, bullshitting bastard intent on destroying the club. Trouble is, both positions can't be right, can they?

Some of the debate is well thought-out and intelligently expressed but when all else fails it often descends into abuse. At this point, messrs Kenrick and Lloyd will intervene and remind everyone that low blows, eye gouging and ear biting are not allowed. People are entitled to their opinions and it all adds considerable spice to the proceedings and makes TW the best show in town.

Personally, absolute truths bother me ? whatever they are applied to. My view is that life is messy and full of grey areas. The truth about BK lies probably somewhere between the views espoused by TM and RD and their legions.

However, there has been a recent tendency to mock those of us who do not wish to take absolute truth positions. We are called naive, blind sheep, stupid etc. Oh really?

I hope some of you read a contribution to the Mailbag yesterday concerning reaction to the Stoke game. It was all there - excitement, passion, rollercoaster ride of being an Everton fan etc. A guy from Australia (perhaps not appropriate to give his name) was providing commentary. He later went on to explain that he was doing this despite having a major health worry. He was offered support and best wishes. Personally, I found that very poignant and I wish him well.

It reminded me of what being a true Everton fan is all about. Keep up the war of words about BK and KIrkby - that's your right in a free society. Cherish it.. However, don't dare mock me and thousands like me for doing what we do best which is just getting on with supporting Everton. Remember this - we are the majority.
Mike Evans     Posted 15/09/2008 at 19:27:16   Comments (28)

Let the Fans Sell the Club

According to some reports, it would appear Bill Kenwright has invited his good friend and, sixth richest man on the planet, Mr Anil Anbani to the Standard Liege game for a spot of late night Tiffin on Thursday. As I see it, if this is true, this can be for one of two reasons.

A) he's a good mate who fancy's a decent night out or
B) He's looking to invest some of his hard earned cash on a Premier League team and sees Everton as a possible target.

If it's A then enjoy the night Mr Anbani and we'll see you around. If it's B however we, the Fans, need to "Sell The Club" by making a good impression. By this I don't mean put a fez on and say "Just like that" in a Tommy Copper voice...

What I do mean is, lets show Mr Anbani what being an Evertonian actually means to each and every one of us. Get behind the team 100%, sing "A Grand Old Team" and "The Banks of the Royal Blue Mersey" like you've never sung it before, and (even if things go wrong) get behind the team wholeheartedly and shout, "Hurrah! Come on you chaps, you can do it!"

Put your anxieties to one side for the night and encourage the players onwards and upwards to bigger and better things. Bring you flags and banners and let's make so much noise he wants to come back for more and more and more. Bill's pulled a nice trick by inviting him to a night game, because we all know there's nothing quite like Goodison under floodlights to get the blood pumping. Also ssssh! ? he won't be able to see the old lady's in a bit of a mess.

Just a line to Tony Marsh: It might be better if you don't go.
Kevin Jones     Posted 15/09/2008 at 16:18:11   Comments (24)

Defensive Problems

4 games in, 7 goals scored... not bad. However, 4 games in, 9 goals conceded... very poor. Without posting a doom and gloom thread, I was just wondering what people's thoughts were on our defence at present.

Now, I appreciate that the defence has been left exposed up until now by the departure of Carsley, the unavoidable starting line-up changes and the delay in finding a suitable replacement for Cars, plus the new players needing time to bed in. However, I have still not been impressed with our defence so far this season.

I think most would agree that our best defence is:

GK - Howard
RB - Neville
CB - Yobo
CB - Jagielka
LB - Lescott
DM - Castillo/Fellaini

(Let me add... that I really like Baines, but I think he still has developing to do, particularly defensively, but he does possess a lot of stamina, pace and an excellent cross. It's just not the right time for him at present.)

That defence looks solid but at the moment there appears to be no cohesion, a distinct lack of understanding, awareness and communication and problems with the basics.

Moyes needs to stick with this unit and really get to work with them on the training ground, he needs to get them communicating better and needs to build up the understanding and confidence that was present last season. Basic errors (i.e. backing off, hoofball, etc) need to be irradicated and lapses of concentration need to be cut-out.

In addition, while Tim Howard is a great keeper, Chris Woods really needs to do some work with him in relation to his presence and ability to deal with high balls, crosses and throws (in Stoke's case) which land in and around his 6 yard box. He is very reluctant to come and claim the ball and lacks that commanding presence that so many great keepers have/had and this can have a knock on effect on the defence, who in-turn lose confidence in their keeper, ultimately leading to more mistakes or rash decisions.

We need to get back to basics and get back to doing what we have done so well, for so long, and that is... defending solidly as a unit, particularly at Goodison.
John McKie     Posted 15/09/2008 at 13:22:06   Comments (44)

Arteta Booked

Driving up from Devon listening to 5 live yesterday was surreal... first a very entertaining Grand Prix, and then one of the most gripping second halves of a football game I've ever listened to. Elation and frustration, confusion and then delight, all in an hour... I somehow stayed on the road despite not paying it any attention.

One thing that bothered me was that Arteta was apparently booked by Mr Wiley for standing a yard inside the pitch when Delap was going for one of his long bullet throws. Did anyone see this? How can a player be booked for standing a yard inside the pitch? What are the rules on proximity to throw-ins? Match of the Day ignored it entirely and I just wanted to know the story. When he reaches 5 yellows and misses an important game, we could rue this yellow card. All the small things add up!
Louis Huglin     Posted 15/09/2008 at 12:24:50   Comments (15)

Winger

Did anyone see Moyes interview on setanta before the game when he was speaking about wide players, the shortage of. He mentioned missing out on one by tribunal??? Unsure what he meant & who it was.

Anyone shed any light, just curious really.
John Lloyd     Posted 15/09/2008 at 12:06:40   Comments (13)

Above “Standard perfomance required??”

It could be a big moment for us this Thursday, a Uefa Cup fixture on a Thursday night always feels special even at this early stage in the competition.

The fact we are playing a team who have proven their credentials by coming close to toppling our neighbours in pursuit of Champions League glory, just adds to the spice. This alone gets me motivated and excited, looking forward to contributing to the atmosphere on the night, trying to drive our boys that bit more than they will be driven by Moyes alone.

But we must not ignore the publicised rumour that has been circulating over the past week. There is a secondary reason to lift Goodison to its highest heights of passion. It seems we may have a VIP with a difference in attendance, one looking to purchase a football club, one with an undoubted personal fortune. It appeared that Newcastle were his first choice, so to switch targets is not an idle decision, if it's one he makes.

We, the fans can help him make this decision by showing him what having Everton in your blood means. Thursday night needs to be a great spectacle, of exciting football, the right result, and an experience that only Goodison can deliver.

Let's all get behind the team from the very start. Lets lift the players, lift the roof, and lift the special VIP guest we might have in attendance so he can see for himself, that the purchase of Everton is not just a business decision, but a buy-in to the priceless... being a part of the most passionate, most exciting club in the world.

So there are two reasons to create an unrivalled atmosphere on Thursday night: first, to support our team to victory; and second, to promote ourselves as a very exciting club to be involved in, with a very exciting future with the right backing. Let's do what our neighbours couldn't and make Liege look very "Standard". COYB
Gareth  Mercer     Posted 15/09/2008 at 08:39:02   Comments (11)

Never Again

Against Blackburn and Portsmouth we were manhandled brutalized and bullied. For better or for worse, this is mid- and low-table Premier League. You need size and you need strength or you will be pushed around. With little guys and kids in the midfield, the earlier games unfolded like a schoolyard "pants pull down" incident. That's what annoyed me. And, from the look on his face, maybe that's what annoyed Moyes as well.

But look at yesterday's line-up. Now we have our own set of bullies. Castillo and Fellani were our own enforcers. Make no mistakes about it, Britannia stadium was all-out war. Now, I can happily say that, barring a severe injury crisis, we'll never again be completely overwhelmed by the physicality of other bigger teams.

Maybe this is Moyes's idea of how to get into the top 4. Lots of steel all around with tapestries of delicate silk (Arteta, Pienaar, Osman) here and there...

COYB.
Nigel Gregson     Posted 15/09/2008 at 01:54:27   Comments (8)

From the Directors Box

Both myself and my brothers were priviledged guests of SCFC and received the full hospitality treatment from the North Midlands' finest today. Out of the three tables in the Boardroom, only two were fully filled, the absence of BK and his entourage leaves questions to be answered.

What I will say is that Robert Elstone seems like the perfect gentleman... very engaging, although he wouldn't give much away on Kirkby etc.... Sir Phil ? I can't say much... other than I haven't seen anyone more passionate about this club and eager for investment.

Before this game, I guess I was ignorant to the passion of some of our Board.... I just hope that BK's absence was more than 'illness'... maybe he was having an Indian???
Nick Drake     Posted 14/09/2008 at 22:57:11   Comments (9)

Tim... Legend

Have Everton had a better player in the last 25 years than Tim Cahill? Okay, he might not be the most gifted of players but for effort and commitment give me 11 Tim Cahills any day. When he kisses that badge, you know he means it ? not like the majority of the other pricks. When he puts the blue shirt on, he gives everything and would play with a broken leg. Also I'll never forget when he scored the winner against Millwall, no celebration out of respect ? something another so-called "Once a Blue, Always a Blue" should remeber. Timmy, you'll do for me.
Tommy McGrath     Posted 14/09/2008 at 19:27:13   Comments (33)

Moyes - the passion's back?

All-in-all, I was pleased with the team's efforts today. Unlike Derby last year, who were awful, Stoke are no pushovers at the Britannia. I don't like the long throw tactic but you can't argue with its legitimacy. This was 3 points won in an hostile environment and a few more teams will come a cropper there before the season's end.

As pleasing as the result, was Moyes's obvious passion for the win ? the man who ran to the away end at the end of the game didn't look like a man who was going anywhere soon. Also, did anyone else notice the tug'o'ball between Arteta and Yak when Everton were awarded the penalty that wasn't? Not sure that was entirely amicable!
Ray  Robinson     Posted 14/09/2008 at 19:37:34   Comments (18)

Mr Alan Wiley

It seems as though this referee has had a vendetta against Everton FC for 8 or so years because our then manager, Walter Smith, made an official complaint against him after Mr Wiley singled out Duncan Ferguson to his assistant when Everton played Arsenal at Highbury. He allegedly told his assisant to ?watch out for this player, he can be dirty so watch out for him?. Also he and his assistant disallowed, what turned out to be a perfectly good Andy Johnson Everton goal against Blackburn last season and declined to explain his decision to the media afterwards.

Today, against Stoke City, he gave a free kick when replays showed Everton should have had a penalty ? and he booked Mikel Arteta for standing on the touchline during a Stoke City throw in, even though that in the official rule book it is not an offence to do such a thing.

I really hope that referees don?t hold ?vendettas? but after some of Mr Wiley?s refereeing performances at Everton games since the Duncan Ferguson incident, unfortunately (really unfortunately) I have begun to wonder just what on earth this man is playing at. Or am I just being paranoid???
Adam Bennett     Posted 14/09/2008 at 18:53:36   Comments (38)

How good is Carlo Nash?

The reason I ask is because Tim Howard seems to be well off the boil this season and may be in need of a wake-up call. When Moyes signed Nash, he said the player `had been brought in to give Tim some real competition`. Curiously, I can find nothing in his record that indicates he has ever been anything but a lower-league player.

True, he did spend some time at Man City but I'm not even sure they were in the top flight when he clocked up 37 appearances for them. Preston, Stockport and the like seem to have been his more usual habitat otherwise. I suspect that Moyes will have little option but to persist with the jittery Howard who was certainly responsible for presenting Stoke with two goals this afternoon.
Colin  Tunstall     Posted 14/09/2008 at 16:06:49   Comments (24)

New Boys

What a game! I was edge of my seat for the whole second half. Great win and it should now set us on our way.

I just thought I'd comment on the first impressions offered by our two new signings playing today. For me, Castillo won the battle over Fellaini clearly. Although his long passing looks to need a little work he worked very hard for the team and made some impressive tackles. Fellaini looked ok first half but apart from winning a couple of headers was anonymnous. Let's hope it´s just first day nerves.

But, for me Castillo looks like he could cut it and take a place in the team. Great to have Tim back and, despite having a farily quiet game all in all, he did what he does best.
Robert Prince     Posted 14/09/2008 at 15:39:04   Comments (61)

Stoke

Blimey - what a shock, both Castillo and Fellaini make their debuts and are joined by CAHILL STARTING!!!!

Lescott to left back with Jagz in defence and Vic up front with the Yak.
Mark Pendleton     Posted 14/09/2008 at 12:48:58   Comments (170)

Not Number 1?

I had been curious as to why Tim Howard was never given the number 1 jersey after signing for Everton as clearly the first choice keeper, and now with Carlo Nash wearing number 1 after being signed as a backup it really seems odd. Anyone know the story here?
Steven Sturm     Posted 12/09/2008 at 23:35:41   Comments (9)

Yobo and Osman missing tomorrow?

The physioroom has Ossie (doubtful) and Yobo definitely out (for 2-3 weeks!) for tomorrow's game.

Anyone else heard anything about these two injuries?

We'll be a patched up side again despite the new signings. Saha is out for another 2 weeks, Jacobsen for 3-4 months....
Jeremy Benson     Posted 12/09/2008 at 18:31:30   Comments (16)

Anil Ambani interested?

Just said on Sky Sports News that Anil Ambani (the sixth richest man in the world) has dropped his interest in Newcastle, due to the current situation there.

They then said that it is rumoured that he will look to buy another club and reports suggest that Everton are that club. They said that he will be a guest of Bill Kenwright at the Standard Liege game on Weds night.

Interesting...!!!
Iain Latchford     Posted 12/09/2008 at 16:30:41   Comments (73)

Sunday can't come soon enough

Well what another exciting week of blogging there has been on Toffeeweb.

With the divide between the Bill-lovers and thew Bill-haters getting bigger by the day and DK getting to Grand Canyon size proportions, doesn't anyone just want to concentrate on the big game against Stoke on Sunday?

I for one am looking forward to a good showing from our lads and hope to see some good football. With a couple of handy players bought in, it will be interesting to see what starting 11 Moyes will put out!

With proven quality players like Cahill and Peanuts not far off and a hopefully injury-free Vaughan I think the next month or so should be quite exciting!

I say let's cheer the lads who are representing Everton on as we should and leave the internal issues for another day. Here is what my team would be if I was Moyes on Sunday:

Howard; Neville, Yobo, Jags, Lescott; Arteta, Castillo, Fellaini, Baines; Vaughan, Yak.

Subs: Nash, Baxter, Rodwell, Osman, Valente

CYOB!!!!
Michael Tracey     Posted 12/09/2008 at 05:22:26   Comments (33)

Sing aloud and sing it proud

Blackburn at home, first game of the season, got my ticket, let's go make some noise... NO, let's sit there and listen to Blackburn singing away taking the piss out off us.

I?m not a season ticket holder anymore as I work away a lot, but that does not stop me supporting the blue boys. There?s nothing better than coming home from work and seeing who?s next at home and going to the match. The only problem for me is the lack off noise from the Goodison faithful, we all remember matches when the team just clicked and we could beat anyone, the crowd is unbelievable then. It?s just too negative at the moment and if the crowd is negative then it only stands to reason that the players will be as well.

Now I?m a believer of the supporters being the 12th man, when you go to a derby match then you know you're at a game, the noise around the place is unreal. Everybody is on screaming at the players to do well, come on get stuck in to them, singing along, come on blues come on let's have these; these are crap come on? You know you live every tackle, you want to be on there helping them, if they fall down you want to get then up, give them a kick up the arse an say go on lad go an have these.

Every game we play should be like this.. ?every game?. The crowd at Goodison should get back to when you sang and got behind the team even if there not the best out there. This team WILL COME GOOD, let?s not sing a little song for 2 minutes, let?s give our boy?s 90 minutes of Liverpool?s finest.

The crowd just needs to give a big extra lift to boys and raise the roof off Goodison again, the players need their 12th man back, so let?s give it to them.? COYB
Barry Carey     Posted 12/09/2008 at 04:36:20   Comments (19)

Enjoying my football again

There are a glut of games coming up over the next couple of months in the league and the Uefa Cup. Between my work rota, a training course over the next eight Thursdays and a new satellite TV package I'm actually going to be available to watch a lot of the games. And you know what, if it kills me, I'm going to make damn sure I enjoy every last highlight and lowlight of it.

Over the last four or five odd months I've been the most miserable, depressed, petulant, sulky football fan known to man. And to be honest I've had enough. Right now, I'm just get back to basics, switch my brain off and watch some football!
Kieran Fitzgerald     Posted 11/09/2008 at 21:47:35   Comments (6)

Neville...

What on earth was Phil Neville doing on Sky Sports News this morning banging on about the Liverpool vs Man Utd match? I know they would have approached him, but why comment? Does this not get right on anyone else's tits?

There's the small matter of a vitally important game on Sunday that will determine whether or not HIS team is back on track for the remainder of the season.

Do you think prior to the Derby they'll wheel out Wayne Rooney to add his spin on the build-up? No, I didn't think so!
Alec Laurie     Posted 11/09/2008 at 14:09:27   Comments (29)

?I'll sell tomorrow to the right bidder...?

I wrote to BK several weeks ago, just after he made the statement that he needed to sell EFC, suggesting that he set up a buyout of the club by the fans ? in a model similar to that used by Real Madrid. Let's face it, he is the person best placed to set up and co-ordinate such a scheme ? yet not a word of reply was received.

Now I am not surprised by that but surely that would be a better option than being bought by some rich billionaire who sees the club as a toy for the next few years? Does this not put his "I'll sell tomorrow..." comments into perspective?
Rupert Sullivan     Posted 11/09/2008 at 12:15:10   Comments (10)

Is that why we get 'em cheap?

Whilst personally sorry to see that Lars Jacobsen has suffered a quite serious injury whilst on International duty, I am not alltogether surprised. One glance at the Dane's career shows that his injury record is such that he plays more regularly for his country than he has ever done for his club. Given that Saha is similarly unfit for duty, last season's loanees, Gravesen and Gardener never were, and Shandy Andy never will be, I'm beginning to believe that Moyes has a penchant for signing crocks ? or perhaps that's all he can afford!

It's rather been a feature of his tenure and it's truly amazing that he has achieved so much whilst indulging in players of such doubtful history, medically speaking. Just think Pistone:- re-signed after missing more games than he played... and then never seen again! Baines:- signed whilst recovering from serious injury and in need of protection throughout last season; even good players such as Cahill, Arteta and Pienaar are delicate, to say the least... I'm sure you'll get my drift.

Yes, Moyes can spot a bargain but I'm sure in most cases he's in a queue of one in being prepared to take a chance on players who will spend more time on the treatment table than they ever will on the field!
Phil  Marchant     Posted 11/09/2008 at 09:08:10   Comments (25)

RIP The People's Club

On Wednesday the 3rd of September 2008, Bill Kenwright addressed shareholders with this statement;

"I thought the presentation was terrific. I think Robert, in the 5 weeks he's been at the job, has done an extraordinary job. I think he'll continue to do an extraordinary job. When Keith Wyness left, he and I had a meeting within 24 hrs and I said there is a feeling in the football club that communications are not good. I want an open door policy and all the different factions about this, about everything. It's an emotional issue, which should be listened to and supported. ".

On the same evening, the CEO of Everton Football Club said;

"I think a couple of things that came out loud and clear is that the door is open at this Club."

Today, Wednesday the 10th of September, the major shareholders of Everton Football Club have through the official site announced an amendment to its Articles of Association in relation to the petitioning, by shareholders, for the convening of General Meetings;

"In future, shareholders wishing to convene such a meeting will be required to garner the support of members representing at least ten per cent of the paid-up capital of the Company (Companies Act 2006).

The Club required ? and has now attained ? signed copies of the resolution from shareholders holding in excess of 75 per cent of the total voting rights of eligible members. Accordingly, the resolution has been passed....."

RIP The People's Club.
Neil Adderley     Posted 10/09/2008 at 13:15:42   Comments (75)

General Meetings

Am I right in thinking that the mandate for calling a General Meeting has just been changed from support 20% of shareholders to 10% of shareholding?

Talk about moving the goalposts and gagging your critics. Were BK and Co THAT afraid of the fans who opposed them at the EGM that they had to unleash the lawyers to find a way around people voicing their criticism? If so, then it's a sad, sad day for Everton Football Club. Even if it does "bring us in line" with most other Premier League Clubs, the motives behind it are sickening at best.
Mark Wynne     Posted 10/09/2008 at 12:12:55   Comments (86)

On the good side...

Despite all of the negativity there are some good points to come out of things recently:

a) We've got rid of a Chief Executive Officer none of us really liked or had faith in
b) It looks like we aren't going to Kirby
c) We signed the midfield general that we wanted (this was more a priority that Mouthino)
d) We've added a defensive midfielder that we needed
e) We've added more experience to the back and front lines

So not all bad. Just wish Moyes would sign his contract.
Jonathan Fletcher     Posted 09/09/2008 at 14:32:14   Comments (32)

Appiah

I heard on Setanta that he's bought himself out of the Fenerbahce contract and is now a free agent. That means he can be signed outside the window. Shouldn't we be in there like Amy Winehouse in a crack factory? Kenwright/Elstone/Moyes (take your pick) should be on the phone to his agent, offering him a great deal and pushing our African credentials like there's no tomorrow. Chances?
Mark  Wynne     Posted 09/09/2008 at 13:46:09   Comments (19)

The BIG question

I wanted to ask all Evertonian's on ToffeeWeb one question. Perhaps the most important question. Not about players. Not about the ground move or transport links to and from. About our Manager. IMO one of the best manager in the league. Possibly our best asset.

The following is taken from a recent interview given by Phil Neville, our club captain.

"I am really proud that the club has offered me a 4-year contract. I've been here three seasons now and I have to say that I've loved every minute of it. From the outside looking in you don't know what to expect but I found when I came here that the spirit and the togetherness of the club is fantastic.

"Loyalty is a big thing in my life and this is the only club that I want to play for. It's a great club and I want to finish my career here.

"At the end of last season I spoke to the manager, and the chairman and it was quite easy. When you've got two parties who want the same deal and are happy with each other these things only take a couple of hours. I can't understand players who go into negotiations for six months because that tells me that one party involved isn't happy about things. But that wasn't the case with us. It took one meeting and one telephone call and it was as easy as that."

My question: Why is it taking so long for our manager to commit himself to our club?
Barry Sherlock     Posted 09/09/2008 at 13:17:47   Comments (13)

How close to the edge are we?

Not too many positive vibes have been emanating from Everton over the past few weeks.

First we had the resignation/sacking of the the Chief Executive and then the `signings` crisis with absolutely no action taking place until the final hours. Last week we learned that unless DK gets Government approval,all prospects of moving to a new stadium are doomed. The Chairman admits he is `a pauper` amongst Premier League owners and then our perceived benefactor/guarantor, Phil Green, tells us he wants nothing to do with Everton!

So, in all this abject misery, how near is our club to the brink? As the debt mounts, uncertainty continues over the manager's future and `friends and family`run for cover can the club continue to be ultra competitive as they have been for most of the last six years?

What if DK doesn't happen? What if the 24/7 search for a financial saviour comes to nothing? What if Moysey takes a hike? Will it be the end for Everton as a Premier League force or can Blue Bill hang in there ad infinitum?

Perhaps more importantly, has anyone got a sensible stategy to offer which will ensure our Everton survives even if it means another decade with the self-appointed `Mr Everton'?
Brian Noble     Posted 09/09/2008 at 12:43:41   Comments (27)

Player of the Month...?

Whatever happened to Toffeeweb's Player of the Month poll? I used to enjoy looking back over the month's match reports and considering who had impressed in the last few games.

I know the polls on the site are currently dominated by stadium/transfer related issues, but surely there's room for a week-long vote at the end of each calendar month? It didn't run last season either, and there's probably a reason, but I did think it was a good feature. I seem to remember that, (obviously thanks to this site's discerning readership), it was never just a role call of fan's favourites but instead a genuine reflection of a particular month's performances.

So if possible, let's have it back please! So now to decide who deserves August's award....Erm...Perhaps take a raincheck until September....
Michael Dawson     Posted 09/09/2008 at 12:21:16   Comments (4)

David Moyes why wont you sign?

The new contract was agreed months ago and apparently Moyes ?has no problems with it?. Moyes then acquired a new No 2, eventually replacing Alan Irvine with Steve Round from Newcastle. The transfer window is now closed and he has bought in Jacobsen, Castillo, Nash, Saha and Fellaini. So now whats the delay???

Moyes recently has been linked with Newcastle and West Ham and although he's probably not going to go to either of them, not much has been said from Everton saying Moyes is going nowhere etc. By not signing, the speculation just continues about Moyes and continues to put Everton FC in a dim light. Daniel Johnson     Posted 09/09/2008 at 09:24:05   Comments (18)

Don't you like Our Phil?

In the last several months (although it has apparently always been the case) I have noticed Phil Neville has come in for some harsh and incessant criticism from a section of Blues' supporters. Simply put: why is this the case? Why do some Evertonians regard our captain as little more than a liability?

Personally speaking, I think he has been an excellent servant to the club since his arrival ? his extended contract and promotion to captaincy supports this view. Furthermore, outside the Everton community, I have found amongst colleagues a universal respect for Neville and likewise in the media; Sky and BBC seem to be in plutonic love with our Pip.

I suppose one could argue that he is ill-equipped in a defensive capacity but our backline last term was remarkably sound. Again, it could be argued that he opts too readily for longball oriented football. But, when Phil does indeed employ such a tactic, it appears more out of necessity than preference and when we take into account the loss of key players in recent months, the option of bypassing midfield can be condoned if not wholly understood.

So, in closing, if anti-Neville feeling is universal among Bluenoses then I feel a little disappointed with my brethren.
Neil  Styles     Posted 08/09/2008 at 14:35:33   Comments (47)

Painting the town red

Over the past few weeks I have noticed driving around the Liverpool area a vast number of LFC shirts/merchandise about and worryingly the lack of the same for Everton FC, whilst in the town centre yesterday I must have counted 50 red shirts and only one blue.

When I think of David Moyes's opening proclamation of most people on the streets of Liverpool being blue, it seems somewhat hollow now as the statement simply doesn't hold water and in that I also wonder how we can call ourselves "The People's Club", when the people are exactly who we are losing.
Neil Todd     Posted 08/09/2008 at 12:52:19   Comments (47)

All Quiet On The Western Front

Although massively patriotic, I am not a great lover of the International game and not only miss the weekly football outings but the banter on ToffeeWeb after the game.

Have spent my weekend watching crap TV (even watched that great British hope Andy Murray win) and was wondering what other peoples feeling where on the international games... Are we glad we do not have a team full of Internationals who could get injured or poached as they are in the shop window? If Internationals are so important why doesn't Sky run them?

Having endured a summer of no football for the season to start only to falter to internationals... should there be a longer International break to cram more games in to stop interference in our games, the list of questions could go on and on.

Or am I just bored because because three weeks into the start of the season we have a break?
Ralph Basnett     Posted 07/09/2008 at 23:34:54   Comments (15)

A simple solution?

I note that the recent EGM did little to assuage the concerns of those many Evertonians opposed or in fear of the DK project. The fact that there appears to be no realistic alternative makes it inevitable that the Club must continue to pin their hopes on a positive outcome of the Inquiry. But with Liverpool FC in similar uncertainty, should not the whole stadia issue be taken over by a higher authority?

From this distance, it may be too simplistic a solution but I have totally failed to understand why the Liverpool City Council have not, by now, taken the initiative of claiming back the Stanley Park site and proposing to build a municipal stadium to host both Everton and Liverpool and the many major non-football events a vast auditorium could attract to the City.

Each club should be required to find circa £100 million, principally to fit and equip quite separate Everton and Liverpool Villages (named Goodison and Anfield?) at either end/or side of the stadium. The remainder of the cost (£300M?) would fall on the Council and their many business partners who would receive naming rights for stadium, stands and lounges.

In this way, the independence, traditions and honour of the clubs would be preserved and the Council would have retained their two most treasured residents. As I said, it seems simple from here... will somebody instigate the dialogue? PLEASE!
Fergus  Malloy     Posted 07/09/2008 at 14:22:16   Comments (29)

Segundo Castillo

Does anyone know if Segundo Castillo has recieved his international clearance to play for us yet? I didn't see him play for Equador last night and I haven't seen any official news from the club.

WIll we see Castillo pull on the famous royal blue shirt live on Sky next week and if so do we think he will start alongside Fallaini??

This could be a good starting line up :- Howard; Neville (if Fit) / Jacobsen, Yobo, Lescott, Baines; Arteta, Castillo, Fellaini, Osman; Yakubu, Anichebe.

It could all start to come together... let's not forget Saha, Vaughan, Cahill, Pienaar and VDM are all a couple of weeks from returning to action.

The future's bright, the future's BLUE!!!!
Scott Jenner     Posted 07/09/2008 at 11:51:18   Comments (18)

Patience and Prudence

I read the recent articles on here with interest, as after the transfer window and our expectations from such, it has been very difficult not to lash out at the recent goings on (or lack of) in the transfer market at Goodison.

I think Bill Kenwright is well aware of the dangers of selling the soul of our club to the Mike Ashleys of this world and I bet he's refused one or two speculative offers behind the scenes that none of us will ever get to know about.

We've had a taste of consistent progress over the last few years and naturally we like it and want more. It's no surprise therefore that most of us feel disappointed that we could only spend what we brought in from the sale of McFadden and Johnson in this window.

However, would any of us be happy if Mike Ashley sold Newcastle and bought Everton? I doubt it. Or if two American idiots came in and invested as a temporary investment, knowing they could easily sell on at a massive profit at any time?

Nor would we want the alleged illegal gains from some Thai criminal, who after pleading innocence for so long, would not return to defend himself in a court of law in his own country.

A simple analogy would be the housing market. An industry booming over the last ten years with properties appreciating at between 15% and 40% per annum. We now have a period of correction where properties are dropping in value. What do people think was going to happen if houses continued to increase at that pace? It would have just got to the point where hardly anyone of us could afford to buy new or move at all. A £200,000 house at an average of 20% per annum would cost around £400,000 in ten years. The market would have ground to a halt and repossessions and the fallout from such would have broken our economy beyond anything we'd previously experienced in our lifetimes.

So the massive inflationary buy-outs at some of these clubs surely cannot be sustained and I think we'll see the repercussions of this over the coming years in some format.

Consistent progress takes time, prudence and patience; as much as I crave for an immediate stronger, harder shot of the drug, I know deep down that I should not

This is Everton FC. It's been our life and will be part of the future of our children and grand children. Nothing but the best is good enough, and Ashley, Gillett, Hicks, Shinawatra and the like come nowhere near to anything we need at our club.

Although a couple of financial paracetamols wouldn't go amiss from time to time to help with the pain of the expectation/reality imbalance...
Alan  Wainwright     Posted 07/09/2008 at 08:35:59   Comments (5)

Everton Way and Football's Riches

While watching the transfer window with intrigue to see who Everton were allegedly buying, the whole Manchester City buyout started to take over the news. ?We?ve signed Robinho? the City fans sang as Everton?s only news was Carlo Nash at that point in the night! My heart sank. Football really has sold its soul.

Bill Kenwright in the week stated that Everton needed a billionaire owner. Great, I thought, but at what cost is football really now selling itself to the corporate world? Bill, for all his failings, is Blue through and through. Are these new Man City owners Sky Blue through and through? Robinho thinks he?s signed for Chelsea for crying out loud! Mike Ashley at Newcastle has alienated every Newcastle fan this week through the Keegan saga. Kenright has stood by Moyes through 39 points in a season. Heaven forbid where we?d be without Moyes and Kenwright.

Obviously I was disappointed with the summer transfer goings on at the club. Watching Moyes against Portsmouth I was really beginning to wonder if in his eyes, his enthusiasm had gone for taking the Mighty Blues forward. However, after listening to a few things last week I really did think whether Everton relocating to Kirby really was an option in the age of the billionaire (or trillionaire in City?s case).

Are gate receipts really on the top of the agenda for the billionaire in the days of multimillion takeovers? At the end of the day, if Everton got another 5000 supporters at a new ground, would it really make a difference for a new owner if he?d invest millions? Football is increasingly being taken away from the common football fan and for me, after just watching England beat the mighty Andorra 2-0 I really am getting miffed by it all.

I want Everton to produce home grown talent and keep them and challenge for the top four but if we sell our soul to billionaires will we still have an identity as Evertonians? In Moyes I trust no doubt, and god forbid he goes to Newcastle and Ashley?s millions. I still feel for all our failings we are a proper club, a traditional club. Nil Satis and the like............ please don?t sell our souls! Everton forever.
Marc Cartwright     Posted 06/09/2008 at 20:50:03   Comments (35)

Fixer Harris?

The calm after the storm is almost tranquil by comparison... but taking stock as one does, after a rather tumultuous week, and picking up on some of the dregs that sailed under the radar, I could not help a feeling of annoyance (yet again!) while reading another piece of rambling drivel from that local resident idiot, Dominic King.

You read the headline, "The man who can put Everton on right financial track", and Keith Harris, 55, is obviously the subject... but who is he? And what exactly is DK saying about his bloke?

As is all too common in the local rags, the meat of the story falls a long way short of the sensationalist headline (written, I understand, by others). Is there anything in this story? Or is it just another opportunity for Dominic to spin the club line and spout meaningless platitudes about how "it surely won't be long before Everton start to climb the table again."
Paul Hardcastle     Posted 06/09/2008 at 17:36:02   Comments (7)

Billionaires Make Me Nervous

All this talk of a takeover is something I think that scares me as much as relegation. Extreme? Maybe, but the fact is every article I read about Man City right now seems to have an air of uneasiness about it. Every time Mark Hughes speaks, he seems to have to reaffirm himself, and I think his record with the resources he has had is impeccable.

If Everton become the play thing of a Billionaire and buy ten £10 million+ players in January, it will no longer be the People's Club. "So be it," some of you will say, especially if we start picking up silverware. But, why I have never had trouble associating myself with Everton is because I think we are one of the few clubs around that can be respected for doing what we do. Competing and making the best of what little we have.

Personally, I think finishing fourth with our current team and Chairman would be more satisfying then winning the league with a checkbook. I haven't had respect for Chelsea in awhile. I'm quickly losing any respect I had for City. Everton have become known as the People's Club for the exact reasons I have just spoken about. If we become the next Chelsea, what will we be?
Joey Brown     Posted 06/09/2008 at 16:32:32   Comments (8)

E-ticketing

I've just bought tickets online for the first time since Metallist last year when they didn't send the tickets out on time.

Are they actually sending tickets out now like they should or is it a queue up at Bullens Road Box Office job again so we miss the kick off??
John Richards     Posted 06/09/2008 at 10:43:27   Comments (6)

Investment...

Some things to consider when speculating (or dreaming) as to whether or not a Russian or Arabian knight in shining armour will come and rescue us from our current financial plight. I will not waste time going over the facts that have been laid bare over the past few months and more specifically since the EGM. We are heavily in debt, and it would appear that we have come to a point where we are no longer able to borrow and therefore unable to strengthen the squad without selling first.

What is needed is someone with an awful lot of financial clout to steer the club into a healthier position, over the course of say ten years. The problem that we face is that, even if we manage to find a suitable investor, the person in question will inevitably want some sort of return on their investment (euro million winning Everton season ticket holders excluded!)

For the purpose of this article, let's say an initial outlay of £250 million is injected into the club:

Current debt: £80 million?
Redevelopment of Goodison / Kirkby money: £80 million
Squad strengthening: £40 million (January)
Squad strengthening: £50 million (Summer 09)

I hate to be a bit of a scrooge or party proper but even in the unlikely case that we attract someone to invest this hypothetical £250 million and the money is spent on the areas mentioned, how do we then go about creating a sustainable future and repaying the £250 million injection?

Even if we fill Kirby or a newly developed Goodison with 50,000 fans every week and continue to produce top-six finishes, will this be enough to keep up repayments on the original investment, and have enough money left over to develop the squad year on year?

The only sure fire way to generate masses of income is regular, I repeat that word, REGULAR qualification for the Champions League proper. With the big four now having been joined by a fifth member, and with the steady, if not spectacular, rebuilding going on Villa Park, I think that regular Champions League qualification will be a very tall order for Everton.

I guess what I am saying is, even if we do mange to attract large scale investment, that it is not necessarily the quick fix answer to all our problems. Look no further than West Ham United for a club that have tried to take the quick fix route and have ended up with an astronomical wage bill, a top ten side at best, no manger, and debt probably somewhere an a par with our good selves.
Peter Laverty     Posted 05/09/2008 at 14:17:56   Comments (19)

I only paid £1!

With all this talk of rich owners and where the game is going, let us examine where we came from. I was clearing some stuff when I came across some old match ticket stubs. Now if my memory serves me correct I reckon a pint of beer in 1977 cost about 35p and that's paying town prices. I may be wrong. Luckily I don't have to rely on my memory when it comes to match prices: League Cup Final 1977 £1.50 Everton v Villa
League Cup Final 1977 (replay old trafford.) £1 Villa V Everton
Man City v Everton 1978 80p
Boro v Everton 1978 80p
FA SCup Smei-FInal 1980 West Ham v Everton £2.50

that one a forgery, easier in them days and letting fans down ain't a new thing. They advertised on local radio saying get down to Goodison and get a voucher so you can get a semi ticket. As I remember it almost the whole of our coach didn't have the right serial number so all of us got in on forgeries except the poor lad who had dished them out. To add insult he got duffed up by Hammers fans outside ? he was a bit of a mouth though. Now every one of us on that coach to a man never and I mean never missed a game. These days we wouldn't get a vote either!

FA Cup Final 1984 Everton v Watford £5.00 FA Cup Final 1986 Everton v RS £5.00 Charity 1986 Everton v RS £5.00 Man U v Everton 1987 £2.80

Now I reckon if other prices had gone up in the same way as football I reckon youd need a wheelbarrow to go for a pint. My first job in the Summer of '77 paid £24 per week probably because it was a scheme. Two years later I was earning about £90 per week. Lived for the weekend and lived for Everton so come monday morning I'd be walking the 2½ miles to work.

If anyone else could carry on this thread with ticket prices through the years and maybe proof of other prices such as beer and petrol prices or even the price of a loaf of bread it could be interesting. Wage slips would be good too. The wages I quoted were for manual labour. Let's see were the working man's game has gone.
Dave  Johnson     Posted 05/09/2008 at 12:23:54   Comments (23)

Moyes sign your contract or get out

I'm floating through the various websites this morning and I notice Moyes is favourite for the Newcastle job. The contract has been on the table for months so can you do the decent thing and sign it? It should be an honour to manage this great club and it shouldn't take months to make up your mind. If you don?t want to manage us, do the decent thing and walk and we?ll get someone who does.

We will now have to go through days of speculation on your future with that shambles of a club who have won fuck all thinking they are bigger then us because Sky have once again promoted them as such and forgotten about the last 100 years of football. We are the 4th most successful club in England and it's about time we were treated with a bit of respect.

It makes my blood boil when the likes of Man City, Spurs, Newcastle and the like are considered bigger because they have become popular since Sky. I was reading the Times this morning and that prick Cascarino was discussing potential takeovers and he labelled us a mid-table mediocre club who could be next. I'm Irish and I hate that man with a passion.

So Moyes, stop with the sulking, sign the bloody contract and let's get the heads down and work hard to bring some success that this great club deserves.

ps: To the Marketing Department Of Everton Football Club. Pull your finger out and start promoting us like Big Clubs should. You?re a joke!
Brian  Doran     Posted 05/09/2008 at 09:10:56   Comments (39)

What I didn't know about EGM

After speaking to a friend who went to the EGM, I didnt know the following info - did you?

I assumed a vote at an EGM was 1 hand = 1 vote, apparently not, 1 hand = however many shares you hold.

Bill Kenwright's 1 hand = 8,754 votes Robert Earl's 1 hand = 7,845 votes John Wood's 1 hand = 6,622 votes

Hence when you look at thse figues, and look at how much of the shares the independent shareholders own (15% or less) any vote is a hands down victory for whichever the above 3 vote for. Hence the 97.71% resolution defeat last night.

Secondly, I would like you to take note of two men, Cllr Joe Anderson and Cllr Warren Bradley. Who have both stated that in 2006 after the Kings Dock debacle, Liverpool City Council have had no contact from Everton over possible moves within the City, and after a statement from Bill Kenwright a few months ago saying Liverpool Council has rejected all sites for a new ground. How can a council reject all sites for a new stadium if they haven't been approached about any???

Cllr Joe Anderson asked who had contacted his office about these supposed sites for the new stadium, and the board said Keith Wyness had done all these dealings before he left.
Albert Jenkins     Posted 05/09/2008 at 00:51:24   Comments (29)

Football's Future

Whilst Bill wants to get us our own billionaire, I do wonder whether those running the Premier League teams ? including Scudamore as Premier League CEO ? are looking ahead over the next few years and gauging what lies there.

I can visualise a time when the Top 4 has become a Top 6 or 7, all run/owned by billionaires or corporate giants, and they all want their clubs to be exposed on a regular and global basis. The 3 - 4 clubs missing out on the CL will not stand for it. Weekend fixtures of Man Utd vs Wigan will cut no ice and they would want Man Utd vs Barcelona , Chelsea vs Bayern Munich, Man City vs AC Milan, Liverpool vs Zenith St Petersburg. We will be faced with a rebellion of initially 20 European teams all wanting a slice of the global commercial revenues, and maybe in time teams from S America, Middle East and Asia Pacific. Scuadmore will have his wish of globalisation but not the model he was hoping for.

Spectators will be faced with watching their teams only at the home games as the travel times/expenses will be far too much for any ordinary fan to afford. Entry prices will all level out probably at the most expensive price , equivalent to £60 a game today at Chelsea. Hooliganism will not exist as opposing fans will not meet.

These 20 clubs will not run youth programmes as all their players will be bought from the feeder clubs ? Everton, Wigan, Seville, Napoli etc, who will be given hand-outs to allow good academy programmes to be put in place.

Entry to the global league will not be on a promotion/relegation basis but by one club loosing its funder and another one taking its place by placing a non-returnable entry fee of £100m.

A salary cap of £200,000 per week will initially be put in place for all players, but it is expected that this is likely to be broken when Ronalndo is enticed from Man Utd to Man City.

These 20 teams will not allow their players to play in International matches, only in the World Cup finals after pressure from the players themselves; earlier knock-out rounds will only use players from the feeder clubs.

That?s it for crystal ball gazing but I dread the day our beloved club goes down either path depending on whether we have Bill in charge or Mohammed Lotsamoney from Basra.
Mike Oates     Posted 04/09/2008 at 21:28:19   Comments (12)

The Perfect Site?

Just a thought, but does anyone know wether the board have considered Edinbrough Park off Townsend Ave as a site for a new ground? It seems perfect to me, it has twelve acres of land and is not even a mile from Goodison, even closer to our birth place. We could even all bevy in the same boozers, dive in a cab and be there in five minutes. It's owned by the dockers... so why not?
John Anderson     Posted 04/09/2008 at 20:47:06   Comments (12)

Facility led?

At the EGM Mr Elstone said ?As it stands today, our option is to be a facility-led club?. I would question the wisdom in that. Just take a look at some other facility led clubs:

Derby County and Pride Park
Bolton and the Reebok Stadium
Southampton and St Mary?s
Leicester and The Walkers Bowl
Coventry and the Ricoh Arena

Okay so these clubs aren?t as big as Everton, but they?ve all tried to go down the so called facility led path, building new stadiums hoping to bring in success (via more fans etc). But where has it got them? Are they any better off? Will we be any better off?

The only one that springs to mind that has worked is Man City (Arsenal were successful before they moved). Man City only worked because their stadium is a world class facility. Kirkby is not. New facility-led based approach is WRONG.

The board have mis-managed Goodison for ages now ? always looking to move. If clubs like Villa and Spurs can attract investment with their stadiums then we should have been able too. Poor stadium management and a poor new facility. Two wrongs don?t make a right. If the board can?t look after Goodison properly how are they going to look after a new stadium?

Sorry Mr Elstone, your prescribed facility-led approach just isn?t strong enough to revive Everton.
Jip Foster     Posted 04/09/2008 at 19:59:01   Comments (3)

Sugar Daddy to Rebuild Goodison

After seeing the Man City fans' delight, I must admit I am very envious as I?m sure Blue Bill and many other fans and chairmen are. Even though I don?t think Robinhio is the answer ? £32M is ridiculous for a fantasy trick merchant ? the money they will have will allow them to get player after player; I bet Mark Hughes thinks he is a kid in a very big sweet shop!!

I think what the Everton Board now need to look for is to get an oil-rich guy/company from the Middle East interested in our famous club. Robert Elstone has stated that it will take £230M to rebuild Goodison. If we can attract someone of this magnitude then then will be able to do this on a grandeur scale to have the best ground in the world ? even Man City wont have this.

I really think this idea needs to be attacked if people are interested and I am sure people will be. Last season we finished 5th and we have a fantastic history and are one of the original 12 league clubs. We are ripe for a take over; also, the guys coming in would be latter-day saints with the fans if they re-built Goodison. I think most Evertonians could stomach a cash-rich sugar daddy if he committed to rebuilding the Grand Old Lady.

I know I am only dreaming but from what I have heard £230M to these guys is child's play so let's try and get these guys in and let them rebuild a gold/blue plated new Goodison ? the EGM may not have all been in vain as the secret's out noW; it's only going to take £230m! Guys lets get on with trying to find a sheikh!!!

Kenwright, Elstone, Earl, Green... get out there and get amongst those guys!!
Andy  Lee     Posted 04/09/2008 at 17:41:04   Comments (10)

I've given up...

...with Everton, with football... I'm done, finished, bored even.

Other than Man Utd, not one team can break even ? let alone make any money. It's not a game where different teams can win, it's a game where whoever has the biggest pockets rule and I'm sick of it.

I have followed Everton for 25 years and didn't think I'd ever feel this low. All Evertonians ever moan about is getting a billionaire owner ? to do what exactly? Spend huge then, when they get bored, the club goes under, like what will happen at City and Chelsea. Overpaid and average players thinking they are gods? I've had enough; at least in other sports there is a chance of change, in football there isn't, unless we sell our souls and get a suger daddy owner.

Nope, thanks for the memories but I'm off, I'll fill my time watching amateurs kick lumps out of each other and watch rugby league where the wage cap at least means everyone is on same playing field.

It wasn't that long ago that different teams won the league and every season brought with it the chance to potentially win something, this without the need for £100m worth of new players.

Thanks, ToffeeWeb, and goodbye... my final rant is over and I feel like a weight has been lifted. All that is left to do is click submit and I'm done. Ya know, it's a lot easier than I thought it was gonna be...
Simon Alder     Posted 04/09/2008 at 17:34:01   Comments (12)

Awesome - no really... it was awesome

Well Done My Mark Grayson...you managed to ruffle feathers and force an EGM. Immense.

But what a complete WASTE of time to ask questions that have already been answered and once again listen to Blue Bill give the 'I can't afford it anymore' story. (At least this time Sky have featured it on their website ? hopefully Russian/Arab billionaires watch and read Sky Sports).

So I am saying a big well done to all those who wanted to force an issue only to be humiliated by the board when they put their hands up with their 26k (or so) shares against the poxy 600 (or so) that could be bothered to waste the energy to raise their arms...

And please don't say it was for the principle and to 'make a stand' because that's a load of old tripe. Waste of my time and yours.
Jamie Rowland     Posted 04/09/2008 at 11:45:05   Comments (61)

Following Villa!

Listening to the comments coming out of last nights EGM, it appears that Everton seem to be mortgaged to the hilt, are left with Kirkby as the last option on a ground move, and need a new billionaire owner to move to the next level.

If Everton where to get a new owner wiling to plough millions into the club and spend £100 million in the next transfer window on various superstars on £120k a week, how happy would you be? How would it affect the team spirit and morale of the current players? And what would it mean for the long-term future of Everton if the new owners pulled out.

I am desperate for a new owner as much as anyone for Everton and out of all the foreign owners who have bought Premier League clubs, the route I would most like Everton to follow is that of Aston Villa. Bought buy Randy Lerner, he has backed Martin O?Neil well in the transfer market without any interference. You never really hear any bad press surrounding Villa and there activities and they managed to fend off Liverpool over Gareth Barry, they have built a young mainly British squad, with a few young academy players in there and have not paid any ridiculous transfer fees or wages out.

If Everton had a bit more money to spend this summer, imagine how much more options we would have if we could've signed Young, Sidwell and Milner to the squad as well as Fellaini.

So which way would you prefer Everton go? Like Chelsea and City, splashing cash everywhere for the short term fix, or down the Villa route? I am pretty sure if Moyes had O?Neil?s resources he would have followed Villa?s transfer policy, so here is hoping for a new owner and following Villa?s approach.
Ian  McDowell     Posted 04/09/2008 at 10:57:26   Comments (15)

Just left the EGM

Some good questions, some idiots, some solid answers from the Board and some scratching of heads.

Not ever been a Bill fan but I felt sorry for him... he basically said he wants away and his shares are up for sale. Says we cannot go on the way we are. He can't borrow or scrimp anymore.

Moyes looked uncomfortable and after listening to us lot I bet he leaves next week!
Ian  Martin     Posted 03/09/2008 at 22:40:15   Comments (81)

Eastlands & Kirkby

I was just thinking that, for those against the move to Kirkby, the buyout of Man City by the Abu Dhabi lot probably couldn't have come at a worse time with regards to the EGM tonight.

I've swung on this one already, at first I just wanted to move ground, I wanted a 60,000 seater somewhere and thought Kings Dock looked spectacular, so when Kirkby came along I just went with it. I don't think I was ever totally convinced about moving out of the city borders though and it was a piece that someone wrote on here that reminded me of our history, and that we were the original tenants of Stanley Park that changed my mind; now I'm dead against it.

But the question popped up when Abu Dhabi swooped in for Man City, no-one's going to touch us until we're at least committed to a new stadium somewhere or redevelopment so, if it's investment you want, then we need a move. I'm not saying Kirkby is the only option but we need something to happen, and we need something to happen before the summer when the loans are maxed out and the transfers don't happen.

I look at the Premier League this year and I've never found it so hard to pick the teams that are going to be involved in a relegation battle, and I can pick 5 or 6 teams that might well be in with a great chance of 4th spot this time round. the Prem is getting harder (just my opinion, although the Liverpool don't look any better) and we need to keep improving.

I'm not sure that it's worth moving out of the city for though, and if the what someone said about Chelsea Roman is true, Chelsea is paying big money for players still, and so they are still in loads of debt; if that's the case do we want such investors.

Oh, I'm getting myself all confused... I guess it comes down to this: I live down south, a lot of supporters I meet, be they Surrey Manc's or Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea or whoever, all say the atmosphere at Goodison is brilliant, which often translates to 'Everton fans are some of the best in the country'. This is what I don't want to lose; if we move we'll still have Dixie Dean, we'll still have Duncan Ferguson, Sheedy, Lineker... but if we move out of the city will we have the 12th man, the roar at the corner?

I'm not so sure.
Simon Walker     Posted 03/09/2008 at 18:36:59   Comments (25)

New investors will pave the way for a European Super League

For several years the consensus has been that the ?big 4? will remain un-challenged, and that the EPL will remain the ?premier league? in every sense ? financially, prestige and international exposure.

Ironically, this very success, and the ability of the larger member clubs to attract huge foreign investors will ultimately lead to its downfall.

As the cosy relationship between Sky, UEFA and the ?big 4? becomes increasingly threatened by other clubs backed by Billionaires and Sovereign Funds, surely the opportunity exists for a break-away league to be formed. This breakaway league will feature the top 6 or 7 English teams, the top teams of Spain, Italy, Germany and Holland plus a few more.

The reason is simple ? currently only 4 English teams can grasp the Champions League riches and that may be reduced to 3 in the near future. Simple maths dictate that 6 or 7 don?t go into 4 or 3 and listening to the ambitions of Manchester City?s new owners it is clear that domestic success and the UEFA Cup will not satisfy new foreign investors in cash and prestige terms.

The challenge for Everton, and Bill Kenwright is to ensure that Everton become one of these new super-backed clubs. Without the new investor with the ability to pump in huge investment, we will be a medium sized fish in a very much smaller pool. This threat in itself, of course, increases the risk for a new investor, and the longer it takes for the club to find such an investor, the narrower the window of opportunity becomes.

The time for action is now. We may not feel entirely comfortable about having a hugely wealthy owner given our ?People?s Club? credentials, but if we ever wish to dine at football?s top table again, we must act now.

The clock is ticking, for us and the Premier League.


Paul Quinn     Posted 03/09/2008 at 14:33:02   Comments (7)

Night is darkest just before the dawn

That?s it, our season?s knackered, I?m opening the emergency Guinness. I can?t sleep now anyway, may as well pour myself into the blackness, cursing and mumbling into the night.

Look at those goofy City fans crowded around the Sky bloke, thank Christ I?m an Evertonian. What kind of birthday is this? Still we?re Everton and we?ve seen it all. Moyes will walk in the morning, half the team will follow him in January, we?ve no money, that?s the season fucked, this pint glass is half-empty I?ll have to crack open another.

This sky fucker?s hardly going to mention us ? they?re too busy fawning around outside Old Trafford, peeking through the curtains (breaking news the United fans have already come up with a chant for Berbatov ? ?bell-ends?). I?m off to check the hyper web, just once more min... fuck, the site?s down, wonder could that mean? Doubt it. On the bright side it?s all over tomorrow ?cos I?ve had it right up to me sack with this transfer window.

And in other news.... "Everton have broken THEIR transfer record with the signing of Marouane Fellaini, the 6ft 4in Belgian international will join the Goodison Park outfit for a fee of ..... we don?t really care & now back to a group of goofy City fans... oh breaking news, David Gill just pulled down the blinds & I can tell you Joe Ledley will not be joining Stoke..." ? Sky bastards... and I?m on the phone waking me Dad.

Give me hope Marouane, before the morning comes, give me hope Marouane, hope Marouane, hope before the morning comes (or just after, either ways).

Best birthday in living memory and I can drink these pints with a different purpose. It?s going to be a long night, I wonder what vodka mixed with the wife?s floradex tastes like? Felliani ?Marouane? Felliaini I browse, ?Marouane? that gives me another idea...
Bradley Nolan     Posted 03/09/2008 at 11:14:10   Comments (25)

It could be you!?

A bit of a fun and fantasy one, but the Euromillions draw on Friday currently has a jackpot of £92 million. If you were lucky enough to win this outright how much would you be willing to put in to our great club? and more importantly, do you think you would be allowed to by the missus?

Also, what would you want back from the club if you did invest say £50m?
Richard Clark     Posted 03/09/2008 at 09:40:58   Comments (10)

Fellaini Cup-Tied

So Fellaini's cuptied until we're most likely well out of the the Uefa Cup. Well, Kenwright and Co, before you start patting yourselves on your backs and grinning your smug smiles, tell us why had to wait until two fucking seconds before the end of the transfer window to sign him? If you'd have got your fucking fingers out three weeks ago, this wouldn't have happened.

Go on, spin us a lie, you know we're worth it ? not!
Mark Wynne     Posted 02/09/2008 at 23:53:34   Comments (27)

Left out, not left back

Having breathed a long sigh of relief that we finally made a significant signing in Fellaini, I ? like most blues ? have spent most of today trying to work out our new first-choice team. One issue I can't get to grips with though from reading other posts is the obsession with putting Lescott in at left back.

Joleon is a good central defender, bought as a good central defender and drafted into the England squad as a good central defender. Our deficiencies at the back at the start of this season have been, in my opinion, mainly due to the lack of midfield cover in front of him and Yobo. However, there is an element of shakiness in his game shown in the two home defeats so far.

Yet a lot of writers seem to think that the best way of shoring up the defence is to bring Jags back into the centre and shunt Lescott to left back. Why?

He was used there out of necessity rather than choice last season when Baines and Valente were injured. OK, he did a fair job, but if we are to make the most of our season, we need all our players playing at the top of their games in their natural positions where they can make the most of their talents.

If, as many people seem to think, Lescott's form is shaky, then isn't it better to drop him and bring Jags in to replace him ? with Moyes getting hold of him and bringing him back to top standard on the training pitch before playing him again?

After all, we do have a decent player in Baines who ? given a decent run ? will, I think, prove why he was rated so highly when we signed him.

Shifting Lescott around to mask poor form seems to me the actions of a manager happy to have a player be bigger than the team. And while beggars can't be choosers, I'd still rather we had players in form in the team - and those not on form working their arses off to prove they deserve to get back in.
Chris Brown     Posted 02/09/2008 at 22:10:15   Comments (23)

Why was Obinna turned down?

As a longtime Evertonian ? I was at Maine Road in 1958 to see Nobby Fielding beat Bert Trautman on Bobbie Collins's debut, to give us our first win that season ? now living in Canada, I would like to know why Obinna was turned down.

From what I have read, he has lived and worked in Italy - an EU country- for 3 years. He played for Chievo Verona from 2005 to 2008 and helped them get promoted to the top division. He was transferred to Inter Milan last week and they wanted to loan him out to Everton ? located in another EU country. He was refused a work permit despite the fact he was coming from another EU country. I thought if you were accepted into an EU country (Italy) and given a work permit, you could move freely around to find work in any of the EU countries?

Meanwhile, Ignacio Gonzales, a Uruguayan, who lived in Uruguay until a couple of weeks ago, was signed by Valencia of Spain (another EU country) who immediately sent him out on loan to Newcastle. The guy has only been in the EU for a week or so and has no problem getting a work permit to work in the UK.

Could someone kindly explain why a guy from Uruguay can spend the proverbial "10 minutes" in Spain and come and work in the UK whilst a guy who has lived and worked in Italy for 3 years cannot work in the UK?
John Horan     Posted 02/09/2008 at 19:26:08   Comments (29)

The Point of thinking 'Big'

The situation at Manchester City, to go with the previous seeming inevitability of the top four, got me thinking... what exactly is the point of an existence of clubs such as Everton, along with the likes of Newcastle, Villa and West Ham??? Simply Premier League mainstays who can be no more.

I, along with all Evertonians, have been glued to the rumblings of the previous transfer window, getting (perhaps unwisely) excited by the likes of Moutinho, M'bia, Love et al.... but I have over the last 24/48 hours become disillusioned by the absolute insurmountable gap that seems to be in front of us and actually win anything.

With or without Felliani or Saha, it seems impossible for us to actually succeed in a sporting sense; even the most ambitious and optimistic of fans must realise that a spend of £30m in a close season will never touch the sides now City are racing ahead with. I can understand our Board, along with other Premier League clubs, refusing to sanction such funds as the Felliani fee because it is clear that such expenditure will not bring success in the current climate.

If the best we can hope for is now sixth out of twenty teams (perhaps not this year, but next), why should the Board raise funds? Surely to come sixth place in a sport is nothing to be proud of (look at the Olympics) and if that's the best that any of us can hope for then seemingly the sport of professional football is sadly dead.
Robert  Pierpoint     Posted 02/09/2008 at 19:25:47   Comments (22)

Stanley Park Stadium

The takeover at Manchester City has thrown up many questions, but the main one that concerns us is: "How can we compete for the all important, money spinning, Champions League places?" This not only concerns us, but also the likes of Villa, Portsmouth, Blackburn and more importantly Liverpool.

Under the ownership of the Americans, Liverpool are going to find it increasingly difficult to fund their on-field activities if they are not in the mix come the end of the season.

With us both struggling to find new investment, do readers feel that now is the time to re-examine the possibility of a shared stadium, where we can share the cost and still be able to concentrate on purchasing new players for our teams?
Richard Clark     Posted 02/09/2008 at 18:54:14   Comments (11)

Steven Appiah

Just getting used to the transfer window being shut when I read an article reporting that Steven Appiah, as a free agent, is considering a few offers. Despite his recent knee injury, I think he would finish our midfield off nicely. I'd be surprised if Moyes hasn't considered making an offer.
Tom  Sullivan     Posted 02/09/2008 at 18:09:09   Comments (24)

Mirror Mirror

I'm as ecstatic as the next bluenose about the arrival of Felliani - he's a young, tall, forward moving midfielder who should help to kick-start our season, but that's not what this post is about. According to the Daily Mirror, we broke our signing record last night by commiting £12.5 million in January for Vagner Love. Is that true? Why no comment on the OS? You would have thought that BK would have had the publicity machine in overdrive after all the vitriol aimed his way about not splashing the cash. It's as if nobody believes or cares...strange.
Andy Powell     Posted 02/09/2008 at 16:31:57   Comments (15)

Another new signing!

It has been confirmed today that Tim Cahill has been back in full training for 2 days. Now that is good news and is like having a new signing.

For him the international break has come just at the right time. He can now have 2 weeks of full training and maybe even have a place on the bench for the game against Stoke. With him and the two new midfield boys in the squad our midfield is looking a lot stronger.
Justin Widdop     Posted 02/09/2008 at 15:53:33   Comments (11)

The Beautiful Game?

Having just watched the 10 mins of BBC highlights of the Brazil vs Belgium game at the Beijing Olympics, to get another look at Marouane Fellaini in a game context, I was struck by how out of place football seems at an Olympiad.

In which other sport do competitors HABITUALLY snarl, shout, swear and argue at the officials, both individually and collectively, and resort to down-right cheating? Just look at the Fellaini sending-off, for example.

Yes I know that occasionally a Swedish wrestler may throw down his medal, and a Cuban might prolong his Taekwando bout with the ref, but these incidents are exceptional and, in the latter instance, produced a life-time ban for the offender and his coach.

Football may be the known as the 'beautiful game' but 'Absolute fucking disgrace' is nearer the mark IMHO.
Chris  Jones     Posted 02/09/2008 at 14:07:33   Comments (3)

Moyes has to sign now

Ok so after the highs and even greater lows of the last two months (the only high coming this morning when I read we had spent money), we can now start to settle into this season. The first thing that has to be done however is Moyes has to sign now while we have two weeks off. He needs to do this to settle the team, the new players and the fans. He has two weeks to get things right...

In my opinion, if this has not been done by the time we line up to play Stoke, then Mr Moyes has to be shown the door. I am not ridding Kenwright of the blame for what has happened, I am simply saying that Moyes has not helped.

Let my put this into perspective. Let's say Mikel Arteta was in the last year of his contract and had not put pen to paper, people would be on here telling him were to go and we would be wanting as much cash as we could get for him now. The exact same applies now.

From the team point of view. How are the team meant to look ahead when the manager is not certain to be there next season? Even if it had been true that Mouthino was in Merseyside at the weekend, who could blame him for not sighing the contract when his boss' future is in doubt?

So my point in this that Moyes must sign now to put everything at ease, and on the plus side if he does then we can all nicely throw our abuse at Kenwright come Wednesday night.

No matter how much Newcastle make me laugh out loud, they may just snip moyes away... who knows?
Lewis Abbott     Posted 02/09/2008 at 13:34:19   Comments (28)

Hello SKY FIVE!

Goodbye to 5th Place - Hello SKY FIVE! Well... if you were awake into the small hours with only Sky Sports News for company then you'll know where I'm coming from.

Was it just me or did the final day of the transfer window leave you utterly gutted ? not so much at our lack of activity ? but at the fact that the Sky Four became the Sky Five thanks to a rich Arabian doctor...

Add to this the lack of any real exciting signings for us, Spurs, Villa etc means the gulf at the top of the league is set to broaden further - I could see the Prem being a carbon copy of the SPL within a couple of years.

Although they only managed one signing last night (Robinho!!!) just think what will happen in January... Berbatov's signing was almost a side-note on SSN last night as they we're going (understandibly) crazy over the events over at City.

For me this means one thing - 15 Premier League teams will be fighting for one European spot from now on; unless an oil rich investor looking for a new toy happens upon us.

Still hate the idea of DK??? I can't help but think that if we had our flash new stadium we may have been a more attractivbe proposition than City given our superior trophy cabinet and European pedigree. Although I am a Southern Evertonian, I have always been in favour of redeveloping Goodison (Although DK would have been easier for me to get too) but the events of yesterday really highlight what is needed to attract investment.

While I think Blue Bill and his rotund former mate Mr Wyness have done a hell of a lot wrong, I think this shows that the general idea of a new state of the art stadium (even if it is out of town) would have lead to future stability for the club.

NB: The stadium design for DK and the fact that a Tesco would be sat on it were both total crap in my opinion however!!! and the lies we have obviously been told are unforgivable.

In summary I think Blue Bill had a decent enough idea of what was required to get some real investment for the club. Unfortunately the execution of this has been embarrasing for all of us.

I hate seeing teams come in and buy the title overnight but I wouldn't be gutted to have seen us sign the likes of Robinho from under thew noses of Chelski on deadline day...
Jim Starling     Posted 02/09/2008 at 13:19:51   Comments (28)

Reflections on a crazy week

Well, now that the dust has settled on some frantic transfer activity and the deadline has now shut until Jan, I thought it may be worth reflecting on the last week.

I went to bed last minute at midnight turning off SSN in disgust as the news still hadn't come through about Fellaini. All I'd been holding out for was a midfield anchor that we have sorely missed since the start of our season as our light weight midfield has been exposed.

When I awoke and heard the news though, I have to say that I'm now much more optimistic for the season ahead, and also the direction in which the team & Moyes are heading.

Time will tell whether Fellaini is a success at Everton, but on paper he is everything we've lacked in CM for a long, long time. Even with Carsley, we've had our best success playing 4-5-1 as we've still needed to pack the midfield. This guy will offer the physical presence we lack, height (which shouldn't be underestimated as the rest of our midfield are all pretty small!), and apparently a great work rate.

Now I'm not saying that we're going to beat everyone from now on and that we are going to be World beaters, but if you look at the squad now with the 4 additions we've made this week we are again position for position on the pitch in a stronger position than we were this time last year.
Andrew Bentley     Posted 02/09/2008 at 13:26:06   Comments (0)

Only The Best?

It is a simple fact of Everton Football Club that we have to sell players to buy more; the Johnson and McFadden deals cover the money we spent of Fellaini is to what I refer.

Everton are skint. Get used to it. This club went as far as it could last year and even that was a fuckin? miracle, wasn't it?!?!? Moyes has done well on a limited budget and no wonder he is stalling on signing a contract. Especially when he sees Man City spending £33m on that crying little twat. Moyes has done about as good a job as he could have, I reckon.

Having said that, Moyes's attitude in and around the subs bench recently hasn't helped us much. He hasn't seemed arsed at all. He might just be at the end of his tether with all this shite ? just like a lot of us. Remember it only takes a couple of injuries to Saha and Fellaini and we are back in the same mire as a week ago.

We, as a club, cannot compete in a financial sense with all these billionaires and as money is what runs the game these days, we therefore can't buy the best players to compete on the pitch. We needed to progress and in terms of spending cash to get players in; we simply haven't. If Kenwright thinks spending money on one player that was raised as a result of selling two others is fooling us, then he is sorely mistaken.

I fear people that without the financial acumen needed in order to generate funds (partly because the stadium isn't fit) then we are going backwards.... again. I only hope that players can stay fit this year, or we are in a whole world of shit.

Nil Satis Nisi Optimum eh - tell that to Everton FC.....
Andy Callan     Posted 02/09/2008 at 08:55:27   Comments (25)

Thank you Guys...

Maybe we all take it for granted sometimes, but last night presumably the holy trinity of Michael, Lyndon and Colm were up burning the midnight oil updating this website with all the latest transfer speculation and possible fact. From what I understand they don't take a penny for running this site and they were up to all hours for what? Giving us tortured Blues a place to sound off and concentrate our hopes and fears.

There's not many fan sites for any team in any sport which can boast something as valuable as ToffeeWeb. Last night I decided to call it quits at 11:30 (from what I've read some poor guy was watching Police Academy to stay awake) but just as I lay my head down to rest I thought 'one more look' and just when all seemed lost and most other fan-site editors would have gone off to Nod as well, we have an update telling us we've surpassed the transfer record once again.

I even read a ToffeeWeb reply to a post indicating we had purchased this guy, demanding a link to the information posted. It read like Red Bull saturated order full of excitement that this information can be verified and passed on to the faithfull in these dark times... and you know what? If they didn't I wouldn't have had the good night sleep that I have enjoyed.

Cheers guys, nicely done job.
Nick Entwistle     Posted 02/09/2008 at 08:35:21   Comments (30)

Will It Never End?

As one door to a room full of rumours closes, another one opens! Oh God will it never end!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/gossip_and_transfers/7593196.stm

I have been a journalist for more than 25 years but I would cheerfully shoot those sports hacks who are responsible for churning out the endless supply of mostly groundless transfer gossip. At close of business last night I'd say Everton had been linked with nearly a hundred players since the end of last season. Yet of the five that did sign I think only Fellaini was ever previously mentioned.

I know there are plenty of people who thrive on these rumours, and yes I admit I do read them too, but now more than ever I think it has been demonstrated how we fans are led by the nose by the media and the press in particular.

I think what galls me most of all is the way these stories are used to pillory the board and DM. By all means have a go based on the facts, but it seems hardly fair for example, to lambast Kenwright and Co for failing to sign the likes of Arshavin, as was the case not so long ago, when there is no evidence to prove they ever bid for him in the first place.

Would it be asking too much to drop the rumour mill from the ToffeeWeb site, at least for a little while? Maybe run a poll on it to sample opinion ? except I suspect I know what the result will be. I guess I shall just have to try and avert my eyes!
Richard Ewart     Posted 02/09/2008 at 07:35:47   Comments (2)

Billy Liar?

We operate in a business world.

Business people always give optimistic statements ("Watch this space") even when they are facing difficult times or are looking for investment or setting up partnerships (Tesco). Just as you see people losing jobs saying "I had no idea", you also see people in a daze like City fans this morning.

Markets are all about confidence and illusion and it is no different for a club.

Fans who expect anything else are naive to say the least and if you can show me a club that "tells it like it is" to their fans, I'd be amazed. We are now customers of a business not owners... not even shareholders. Like it or not, that is the reality.

The people BK is talking to in statements are creditors, esco and the market in geneal... not a few folk on a website. Disempowering I know but I can't recall the Moores dynasty consulting the fans. Did we complain? No. Did we call John Mores a liar when we sold Alan Ball? No. Why? Because we were the equivalent of the Sky 4.

So Billy Liar? Well as much as any other. Perhaps his biggest fault is not being the best business person in the game. And you still think all the problems are because he loves owning Everton and won't give it up? He may lack judgement sometimes but he's not insane.
Ged Simpson     Posted 02/09/2008 at 06:59:25   Comments (12)

Is he worth it?

The BIG ONE!!! The one we were waiting for!! Our big money signing is here. But is he worth it? £15M for a 20- year-old!! He ain't exactly Moutinho. Is he even as good as a Carsley? I hadn't even heard of this fellow 'til 2 days ago.

Breaking the club record on Yakubu was one thing, he was a proven quantity. But £15 mill on a relatively unknown quantity is a pretty big deal. I just hope that the ginger one knows what he is doing on this one and he turns out to be a super success story.
Nigel Gregson     Posted 02/09/2008 at 03:52:19   Comments (82)

Our team sheet against Stoke

Our side for the next game include: Howard, Neville, Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Arteta, Fellaini, Castillo, Osman, Saha, Yakubu

Subs: Anichebe, Vaughan, Rodwell, Baxter, Baines, Jacobsen, Nash

How strong is this line-up? Are the good days back? What do you think?
Sur Jo     Posted 02/09/2008 at 02:52:14   Comments (22)

Guardian confirms Fellaini Transfer

Everton ended their summer-long search for a central midfielder in dramatic fashion last night when they secured a club record deal for Marouane Fellaini of Standard Liège. The 20-year-old agreed a five-year contract with the Goodison Park club only an hour before the transfer deadline, easing the manager David Moyes' growing frustration at his lack of big-money recruits.

Fellaini, a Belgium international, will cost about £15m after a day of extensive negotiations that resulted in Everton eclipsing their previous record outlay of £11.25m on Yakubu Ayegbeni. Moyes has been desperate to sign a powerful, young and industrious midfielder since releasing Lee Carsley at the end of last season and, along with several Premier League managers, was alerted by Fellaini's impressive performances against Liverpool in the Champions League qualifying round.

The Belgian champions have been drawn to face Everton in the first round of the Uefa Cup but having been thwarted in his attempts to lure Joao Moutinho from Sporting Lisbon and Stéphane M'Bia of Rennes, Moyes will now have Fellaini on his side when he attempts to reach the group stages of the competition.

The record purchase will also ease some of the growing pressure on the Everton hierarchy after an arduous summer in the transfer market.
Craig O'Connor     Posted 02/09/2008 at 01:20:49   Comments (36)

Doddy and Co

Doddy, Dutch and Co. What do you think of your 'true blue ' Bill now? Will you still come on here and back him to the hilt? Even if the news about the lad from Liege is true, there is no getting away from the fact that this transfer window, and the way he runs the club, is a total farce. Will you also agree that the man is a liar? His promise of quality players coming in was, as usual, a load of bullshit. I look forward to your spin.
Brian  Waring     Posted 02/09/2008 at 00:12:15   Comments (43)

What were we expecting?

Bids for Kaka? Ronaldinho? Riquelme? This transfer window activity (or lack of) is nothing out of the ordinary. Historically we have never signed in bulk or held ransom to crazy prices. We're very good at plugging gaps on the cheap (starting from back in the day with Marcus Bent). We have done just that - Carlo Nash plugs that gap of reserve goalkeeper. Castillo plugs the gap of defensive midfielder (although we may see one more signing there). Jacobsen plugs the gap of backup right defender. Saha plugs the gap of backup striker.

That's it. Overall zero dollars spent. Who knows what's going on behind the scenes. Maybe we ARE skint. Maybe we are saving up for a real big signing. In any case I'm just glad that the window is closed. Now at least Moyes can concentrate on the football.

He (and consequently the entire team) has appeared very distracted this season so far. Now they can build some sort of tactic - one that doesn't rely on poor Rodwell.
Nigel Gregson     Posted 01/09/2008 at 23:12:43   Comments (89)

1 hour to go and still waiting!

Its 3:30am here in India and I have been sitting at my computer for nearly 9 hours. I have to be at work at 7:30am so that leaves me very short on sleep. It woulda been worth it if we had made 1 good signing tonight. All we have to show from it is Saha and Nash.... real sad state of affairs at our club. Even Hull and Stoke seem to have more enterprise than our club.

I hope I'm proved wrong and we pull of something in the next hour... even if we do,I feel it's time for Kenwright to go. Moyes looks like he will walk away soon enough anyway...

CRISIS? I think very much so....
Santosh  Benjamin     Posted 01/09/2008 at 23:02:37   Comments (25)

This is it!

Here is our new signing, a Goalkeeper!!!!!! and a quote from the OS...."Prior to his stint at Wigan, Nash, 34, has also played for Manchester City, Middlesbrough, Preston, Stockport and non-leaguers Rossendale United."..... I am off to bed, goodnight Gentlemen!
Will Bruce     Posted 01/09/2008 at 21:52:10   Comments (96)

Come in Kenwright, your time is up

Bill Kenwright was spouting on Sky Sports News four weeks ago about how Moyes dazzled him with a list of potential signings. "I watched him live and I thought now I get it." Lies, Lies and more Lies. Moyes has no faith in him and neither do I.

"I am willing to sell the club to a prospective buyer only if they have the best interests of the club at heart." What, like you? It is truly time to go. Moyes still yet to sign a contract, Moyes still yet to sign anyone who has any quality. Jacobsen so good no-one even attempted to sign him even though he's been available since 1 Jan. Castillo on loan... have you not learned from Fernandes, Mr Moyes? Saha (30 games from a possible 200 in a Manure shirt) another astute signing and probably cost us the rest of the Rooney payments.

Is Moyes just buttering up the Utd Board by taking all of the players they don't want in a hope that he will become Fergie's understudy and eventually Utd boss??? Time to come clean; we want the truth and we want it now!
Gary Richardson     Posted 01/09/2008 at 21:23:13   Comments (49)

Last ditch Moutinho bid!!

Just flashed up on Setanta just before 8pm - let's hope its true and cross everything we get him, pay what we need to pay... come on!!!!
Steve  Jones     Posted 01/09/2008 at 20:00:04   Comments (190)

Felliani

Apparently we're very close to signing this lad from Standard Liege? Is he any good! Source: Sky Sports News Reporter
Mark Ramshaw     Posted 01/09/2008 at 19:32:11   Comments (84)

Hunt bid rejected

We've bid £3.5 million for player generally known to be valued at around £6 million. What do these people running the club take us for.
John Martin     Posted 01/09/2008 at 19:21:51   Comments (46)

Our Most Important Signing

It strikes me that whoever does the negotiating with both other clubs and prospective players is only able to do a good job when persuading those who are either wanting to make a big step up or attempting to restart their careers. For example, of Turner, Ruddy, Lescott, Jagielka, Cahill, Baines, Pienaar, Spencer even Yobo; it could be said that a move to Everton must have appeared a very glamorous one. Howard, Arteta, Johnson and The Yak have been able to restart their careers, whereas Valente, VdM, and Neville can see theirs out.

Of our new crop, I suppose only time will tell as to where they fit in but I have my guesses already. I suppose the point I'm trying to make is, is there no-one at Everton who has the experience to negotiate with a big-name player? It appears from this transfer window fiasco that we don't or we would have at least one by now. Perhaps this should have been our first signing at the end of the summer.

It's not easy being an Evertonan sometimes.
Ste Blundell     Posted 01/09/2008 at 18:03:45   Comments (13)

An Absolute Disgrace!

If the papers are to be believed at all, Newcastle have bid £8m for Malouda, West Brom have bid £4m for Trejo of Real Mallorca, Stoke have bid £5m each for Pennant and Ledley.... and the list goes on of bids and buys already completed by other clubs. Unless there is an eleventh-hour miracle, Everton will have spent... errrr? let me think... oh, that's it ? absolutely nothing!

I posted on here a few weeks ago that I'd been told by quite a high ranking employee of the club that the club had gone cap in hand to have their credit lines extended in January in order to pay the players wages and that the club was skint. I was told that this wasn't so unusual. I was also told I was a liar, a dreamer etc etc....

The situation this club is in, and the running of it is, as the title says "an absolute disgrace".

I refuse to waste around £100 a visit for me and my sons (including travel food etc) to attend another match until something changes ? something BIG like a change of owner/chairman whatever. The state of things has actually (and I'm ashamed to admit this) affected my family life over the past several weeks. There are those who'll ridicule me for that, and there are those who will understand...

But to be honest I don't care. I've had enough. If the club as a whole can't be arsed, neither can I.
Brian  Williams     Posted 01/09/2008 at 18:09:29   Comments (22)

Sue the buggers!

If I bought a washing machine and found later that it could not wash clothes clean, then I would take it back to the supplier and ask for a refund.... stating that the item was not of merchantable quality.

A refrigerator that could not stop frozen food going off.... back to the supplier..... refund demand..... not of merchantable quality.

A car that could not travel faster than 30 mph.... back to the supplier... refund demand... not of merchantable quality.

If I bought a season ticket for a Premier League team and was later told by the Manager who worked for the supplier that the team could not win a game... back to the supplier... refund demand... not of merchantable quality.

Could some legal eagle out there tell me why Everton can refuse a refund when Currys and Peoples would have to comply with trading standards legislation? It seems to me that the only thing that is keeping Goodison largely filled is that so many fans have locked themselves into a year-long subscription. If you have had enough... demand a refund!
Brian Finnigan     Posted 01/09/2008 at 18:01:20   Comments (9)

Joey Barton?

According to Sky Sports News, a club that doesn't want to be named is in negotiation with Joey Barton. Seeing as how we've been sniffing around Newcastle for smith and rumoured to be in for Owen and desperately short in midfield, I guess that's us then.

As for other signings, I wonder if Obinna was heading to Liverpool, Arsenal or Man Utd if he would have got his work permit? Seems strange that they can sign foreign youngsters without all this hassle.
John Gee     Posted 01/09/2008 at 18:07:47   Comments (8)

Our new Number 9

Just seen on the Official Site that they have given Saha the No 9. Maybe next season if he scores 20 goals and proves his fitness, but this for me is kinda the final straw. The Royal Blue No 9 shirt is something to be revered and cherished ? not tossed to a Manure reject.

  • Dean
  • Lawton
  • The Golden Vision
  • Joe Royle
  • The Latch
  • Sharpy
Maybe I'm being over sensitive, but the first two must be turning in their graves. They could have given him any number, why 9.
Steve Ashton     Posted 01/09/2008 at 16:59:22   Comments (36)

What Do We Need?

A Goalkeeper. When Do We Need Him? We Don't!

So, we have confirmed the signing of Saha to add to three other players that have cost us precisely naff all. Weren't we told before the window opened that we had £20m to spend before the considerations of £5.5m for MacFadden and circa £13m for Johnson. Add the reduction in large salaries that departed there and with Stubbs, Carsley, Wessels, et al and we should healthily be looking at a total of £40m to spend... shouldn't we?

Moutinho looks to be a no go and, to be honest, even if he were to arrive it would be ridiculous to put that amount of pressure to save a whole squad on any one player's shoulders. What is the incentive for any quality player to come to a team that cannot secure their manager, or even stay suitably safe from the danger zone after the first few games? I know, we are only three games in and I am being a doom monger but there is very good cause. No disrespect intended to any of the three teams we have faced so far as they are all solid enough but (possibly with the exception of Pompey) they are not teams we should feel threatened by and are not going to scare any of the 'Sky Four'.

We have some excellent players who just seem to be sapped of all enthusiasm and spirit and, let's face it, who can blame them? Any Billy Numbnuts knows that we are in a desperate state with depleted numbers from an already perilously small squad and what do we get when we need midfield and striker reinforcements? A new 'keeper! What is it with Moyes' obsession with them? Is Iain Turner not a solid understudy? What about John Ruddy? Both were supposed to be the next international No 1 for their respective countries of Scotland and England. We shouldn't be surprised that they haven't flourished though considering our track record.

Paul Gerrard, Steve Simonsen and Richard Wright were all going to be the next England No 1 and commanded good prices but failed to shine even in a club jersey, let alone on the international stage. Let's face it, we should stop wasting the money we clearly do not have on goalkeepers and replace the eminently likable but clearly incapable Chris Woods with the inimitable Big Nev.

Either that, or let Blue Bill continue fiddling with his train set whilst we watch Goodison burn and the likes of Manchester City find incredibly wealthy new owners to railroad the transfer of pretty much whomever they want. I never thought I would find myself being jealous of a Manchester City fan. Again, no disrespect is intended to them but how are they more attractive than us? I suspect the answer lies in the boardroom.
Lee Mandaracas     Posted 01/09/2008 at 15:19:44   Comments (41)

And now it only gets worse...

Obinna has fallen through. Denied a work permit... What do we need. Two midfielders, minimum. What a Face! And Man City can sell the Club and bid for Berbatov all in a couple of hours. We can't buy anyone in a whole summer.

I wanna scream. There's a Pompey fan giving it all in the office and I couldn't be bothered to respond. I'm empty.
Roberto Birquet     Posted 01/09/2008 at 14:46:12   Comments (73)

An Alternative Theory on Our Poor Start

When the fixture list of this season first appeared, most were expressing delight at the prospect of an easy start with the possibility of securing 12 or more points before the derby. However, it hasn?t turned out like that and I can?t say our total of 3 from 9 surprises me greatly. The reasons debated have been the lack of transfers, Moyes?s man-management and even luck ? but in my book, it is down to the injury woes of Tim Cahill.

Last season, we played 18 league games with Cahill in the team, winning 12 and drawing 4, losing only to Man Utd (a) and Arsenal (h). If we had kept accumulating points at that rate over a 38 game campaign, we?d have got 84 points and have finished 4th comfortably.

Without Tim, we played 20 games, winning 7, drawing 4, and losing 9, to the likes of Fulham, Reading and Newcastle as well as the usual Big 4 suspects. If we?d kept that going for the whole season, we?d have finished behind West Ham!

The lack of a tactical or personnel-related Plan B for Tim?s absences, which are likely to become more frequent, was in my book the most pressing issue of this transfer window ? and unless a Moutinho-sized miracle arrives, it looks unlike to be addressed. What this is down to ? Moyes? inflexibility, the players? limitations, Kenwright?s poverty ? is a question for another day. But come 12:01am tomorrow morning, someone is going to have to grasp this issue or we look set for a season of struggle.
David Gregory     Posted 01/09/2008 at 14:34:38   Comments (4)

Man City takeover Part 2

I see from the BBC Man City have been bought out by a Middle Eastern Investment Company.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/m/man_city/7591735.stm

Who says nobody wants to invest in football clubs thse days? They've been bought out twice in the last 2 years by billionaire owners. We live off loans from BK's pals. In all honesty how can we ever crack the big time again with such embarrisngly pauper like finances?

Without breaking into a complete doom & gloom rant. Doesn't this story serve to fuel the argument that BK has only considered investment that would allow him to retain his control over EFC? Either that, or we are just one fucking horrible investment proposition. Either way we're fcuked!
Philip  Martin     Posted 01/09/2008 at 12:34:09   Comments (22)

Transfer Deadline Day

Well, here we are, the day we have all been waiting for (or dreading):

  • The Moutinho 'Will he, won't he?' saga ends one way or another today.
  • Alan Smith will either delight, upset or not affect two sets of supporters today with the stroke of a fountain pen.
  • Will Sean Davis finally sign for Everton years after his failed medical?
  • Can David Moyes and BK restore some trust in the way they have conducted themselves over the summer by surprising us all with a massive deal to turn our frowns upside down?
  • Will we add another little known name to our books again with another loan deal or two?
  • Will Louis Saha perform a miracle and pass his medical or will will sign him regardless just to add another name to our tiny squad list?
Today is make or break for us. I pray for a miracle. God speed Blues!
Anthony Jaras     Posted 01/09/2008 at 12:17:44   Comments (28)

Clear as mud!

Does anybody believe that theatrical Bill has left it until the eleventh hour, and let us lose two out of three games in the process, in order to sign the "biggie" and create a huge tide of "hurrah we've done it now let's go and qualify for the CL"?

Does anyone believe that "there's been a considerable transfer fund available for the manager for several months".... because, if that's the case then it must be true that David Moyes has refused to spend it, refused to budge an inch in the players he wanted to sign, therefore leaving the club (and himself let's not forget) embarrassed into shopping in the Oxfam version of the transfer window.

Here's the man who wanted to take us to the next level, break the Sky four monopoly, and bring in the players to do that, by seeking freebies, has-beens, and crocks... just to prove a point? It seems clear to me that it's a simple case of either "Dithering Dave" or "poor and penniless"... which do you believe?

As the title says, "it's as clear as mud".
Brian Williams     Posted 01/09/2008 at 08:20:52   Comments (6)

A way to get Answers

It's quite shocking that us fans who actually are the reason EFC exist and everyone associated with the club has a roof over their head and food on their table (to say the least ignoring the Ferraris, Bentleys, Aston Martins etc) are kept in the dark and treated like sh!t. The only way to protest this is to hit the club where it hurts. They keep taking us for granted and we need to make a stand. The only way to do this (which may not be the Everton Way - but it will be effective for that reason) is to not go to the home games until we either get answers or at least some explanation.

I know it's hard to do but we need to be strong and stand together in this. Let's show the club they need us a hell of a lot more than we need them especially when we feel we are get treated like something that doesn't matter. Who do they thin they are? Everything that's gone on this summer could have a simple explanation, but we want to know what it is.

At the end of the day we love this club and there is so much deceit that it hurts. Well, we need to show them this is a two-way street and not a one-way street. In any club, the fans are most important as they are the nucleus, they are everything. Without fans there's no club. If we boycott some home games they will HAVE to do something about it. In any football club protest, this has been proven to be the most effective method to get answers.

Before each season they expect a minimum average attendance i.e gate receipts of say 30/35,000 plus per game. If they start getting below what they've budgeted, alarm bells will be ringing! It's painful but it's the only way, we need to kind of go with our mind on this rather than the heart because our blue hearts are too vulnerable and giving.

Us fans don't deserve to be in this situation. If we don't act now we could notice things getting worse over the years... let's act NOW before it's too late and the club really do take us to the cleaners. And to the fans that will slate me for suggesting this, if you want to keep lining the pockets of liars and in some terms thieves, then be my guest, but you need to stand up for what you believe in, in life. To me this is the only way to get the club to respond in a positive way towards its fans.

I'm so glad now I didn't buy my season ticket and on the other hand have a lot of sympathy for the people that did. As much as I love the club, I'm starting to realise there's a lot more to life than Everton FC. A shame, yes, but from a personal point of view, I think the current attitude/situation has done me a big favour and my naivety has worn off.

No pain, no gain.
Charlie Percival     Posted 01/09/2008 at 07:31:32   Comments (48)

Last Chance Saloon, Bill!

I write this with only 22 hours to go to one of the most important deadlines in recent years. If we don't pull a rather big creative midfield rabbit out of our rather tight hat, I think we are rather 'buggered' (to excuse the vernacular!).

I fear our team morale/spirit will not recover... our great manager will understandably walk... and we'll be in Bust-Bust mode (let along Boom-Bust mode)!

At the start of the summer I extolled the board to 'Carpe Diem' (i.e. seize the day!) . Sadly we have 'let it all slip away'. Well done, Bill ? If the Kings Dock wasn't a classic example of a wasted opportunity, this summer has been a real doozey!

To paraphrase the Boss ? 'It's hard to be an Evertonian in the City' this summer! Any small change from the 'Magic Tour' Bruce? Stallone clearly hasn't brought in much via his friends!
David Edwards     Posted 01/09/2008 at 01:49:21   Comments (31)

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