Skip to Main Content
Members:   Log In  |  Sign Up
NewsRumoursReportsVideoTalking PointsArticles
Text Size:  A  A  A
FAN ARTICLES

The Big Yawn

By Shaun Sparke :  20/10/2009 :  Comments (40) :
Let’s put my cards on the table straight away. I am not a David Moyes fan. I am an Everton fan. I have been since I first climbed out of the pram and kicked my first flyaway across our postage stamp of a back garden in Huyton.

I thought I was Joe Royle at the time... however, age (and the odd pint or two) has transformed my body so I am more akin to Jim Royle now. I have seen some great times being a blue and some pretty dire ones too, but I keep on going week after week out of some sense of loyalty to the club.

I cheer when we win, I moan when we lose, I am in a good mood when we win and I am a right git to live with when we lose.

Everton does that to me. They can make or break my weekend; it’s as simple as that. But something happened at Saturday’s match against Wolves that rang alarm bells in my head. As I sat watching the most tepid first half of top flight football you are ever going to witness, I started questioning myself as to whether I could be doing something far more exciting than being put through what can be best described as purgatory with no chance of salvation.

Now to go back to my first point regarding not being a David Moyes fan. I think that I should clarify that statement here. I am not going to question the integrity of the man or stoop so low as to call him a coward. I wouldn’t do that to his face so I am certainly not going to do it on here. Indeed, this club owes the man a great deal of thanks for pulling us out of the mire that we found ourselves in not so long ago.

I honestly think that without David Moyes this club would have been relegated at least once with little hope of returning back to the Premier League. For that, we all owe him a gargantuan gratitude of thanks. But are we going to have to stay grateful forever for not being relegated or to remain grateful that we have managed to finish in the top 6 for a few years on the run and reached the odd cup semi or final? This isn’t the Everton that I want to support.

I know and have heard all the arguments a thousand times about our injuries, and I know and have heard a million times that we haven’t got any money and that David Moyes is doing the best that we can possibly do on a shoestring. Maybe he is, but as a coach the man has obvious limitations.

I have not collected one coaching badge throughout my life but I must have been to at least a thousand games and watched at least double that number on TV, so I do feel slightly qualified to offer the odd criticism of some of the tactics employed by David Moyes.

First and foremost, why does he insist on bringing every player back into the box when we defend a corner? We were playing Wolves at home for goodness sake on Saturday, and every time they took a corner, Moyes instructed everybody to pile into the box.

Distin, Cahill and Yobo won most of the crosses with great headers but where did the ball end up? About half way in our own half with their centre halves who would hoof it back unchallenged into our box. What kind of lunacy is this? All we are doing is inviting pressure and giving ourselves absolute no chance of hitting anybody on the break.

It seems as though we are scared stiff of conceding a goal and this is hindering any chance of attacking football. I don’t want to see Saha in our own box. He should be waiting on the halfway line to give him a chance at running at defenders.

Secondly, why is it when we play any other team, they always seem more comfortable on the ball than we do. Wigan passed the ball around us with ease and we were fortunate to end up winning that game. Portsmouth looked like Brazil against us. Yes we did win again but we were bloody lucky.

Fulham battered us in the second half and this time we couldn’t hold on for the win... in fact, we didn’t even hold out for a draw. God help us when we play somebody decent. Do we not practice passing to our own players?

Thirdly, and I can almost hear the moans and gnashing of teeth here... Why is Leon Osman still playing nearly every game for us? I love the lad's attitude and I enjoyed his superb goal against Stoke but I am fed up of seeing him run into blind alleys and give the ball away on the right hand side.

I won’t boo the lad as he is doing his best, but if Moyes can’t see the complete lack of creativity down the right hand side when Osman plays there then surely there is something wrong with his judgment of a player.

Moyes was a defender by trade and he can’t help himself. It's defend, defend, defend with him at all cost and —although this may be keeping us there and there abouts — it is never going to be enough.

I want to judge him when we have a full-strength team but we live in the real world here and that may never happen. Players get hurt, it’s a fact of life... and you have to get on with it.

We have become a dire team to watch at times and it’s time for a change in emphasis. I said that I wouldn’t call him a coward, but he has to finally realise that, if he doesn’t change his mindset from that of a defensive coach soon, then he is going to have to get used to more and more of these accusations as the fans slowly turn against him.

I will dance a jig if he proves me wrong because, as I said at the very beginning, I am an Everton fan, but after seven years of improving but basically sterile football I can sense the natives beginning to get restless.

Oh, and I will pre-empt the question that somebody is bound to ask. Who would we get to replace him? That is not for me to decide, we have a chairman and a board to decide these matters. But if there isn’t a coach somewhere in the whole football fraternity that can’t make us start to play decent attractive football again then maybe it is time that we all gave up watching this game.

Reader Comments

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer


Kevin Sparke
1   Posted 21/10/2009 at 08:21:01

Report abuse

Have to say I agree with most of your points Shaun.

The thing is, at times last season and the season before we have played good football under Moyes, but not enough of it for my liking.

There seems to be a crisis point in most games we play in where all confidence in ball retention is lost and the team start treat the ball as if it was something to be avoided. Passes go astray, movement off the ball stops.

I’m slowly coming to the conclusion that Moyes is becoming stale and lacking in ideas - playing the one striker against Wolves at home was treating them with far too much respect. Another thing I’ve noticed is that the body language amongst some of of our senior pros is very telling - have a look at Cahill and Saha... they barely acknowledge Moyes when he’s shouting instructions...

And yet... a part of me thinks we should hang on till the injury crisis abates in late November before thinking about demanding regime change and as an Everton supporter who wants the best for the club the same as you and wants to watch good football you have to ask yourself would Kenwright be in danger of chucking out the baby with the bathwater by sacking Moyes.

If Man Utd beat Liverpool on Saturday the FSW will be looking for a job... perhaps we could do a manager swop? - nah... lets not go there
Ciarán McGlone
2   Posted 21/10/2009 at 09:15:51

Report abuse

Spot on. The man has undoubted management talents...but the areas he is lacking in are so obvious problem areas that it detracts from any kudos he should get...

Showing loyalty week in week out to players who are underperforming...being afraid to drop these players, playing people out of position, and showing too much respect to teams we are clearly better than...

I’ve also noticed a serious lack of closing down from our team...they will stand off opposition players..conceding pitch and allowing them to advance with ease into dangerous positions....I mean these are the fundamentals of the game..along with finding space and making a pass...

I think Moyes can still be a good manager, but I’m losing patience fast...he needs to start developing his game ..and quickly
Tony Marsh
3   Posted 21/10/2009 at 09:46:29

Report abuse

I am often asked who would I replace Moyes with but I am afraid that scenario has long gone. The massive contract Moyes was given last season makes it impossible to sack him.

When I was asked about replacing Moyes 2 years ago I put forward Harry Rednapp and Martin O'Niell who were both out of work and available at the time. Many of our lot laughed. I don't think they are laughing now.

Since then O'Neill has built Villa in to a formidable team and Rednapp has done the same at Spurs plus won 2 cups for good measure. What's Moyes ever won?

The football is horrific under Moyes and I reckon this could be my last season going while he remains here. I just can't take it any more.
Art Jones
4   Posted 21/10/2009 at 09:48:57

Report abuse

I understand your feelings but I think you are being too simplistic , the problems have occured because of our horrendous injury record over the last 2 seasons and the chairman’s inability to provide the manager with a realistic transfer budget to compete with the so called Sky 4 which will come even more to the fore over the next week when we play 3 away games from Thursday to Tuesday ... and you’ll find Kieren Agaard , Hope Akpan and James Wallace taking part in games because of our small squad and the players we’ve brought in being funded by selling a very good player , there’s only so much you can do with loan players or Bosmans when you want to break into the Champions League .
Jose Mourinho couldn’t do much better if the only players he can use are not up to the job but all he has to work with due to an inefficient Board of Directors , unwilling or unable to generate the neccesary funds
Johnny Hughes
5   Posted 21/10/2009 at 10:00:15

Report abuse

Shaun - I totally share your view on David Moyes but have never managed to express it without sounding disrespectful.Like you I’m more Jim than Joe these days but like to think that I have a reasonable knowledge of the game.I’ve also commented on the areas that you have done and this business of packing the goalmouth at corners frustrates me to hell and was a contributing factor to us going behind against Stoke because we ended up getting hemmed in our own half.However, my main point is that there are a lot of Evertonians who seem reluctant to be objective when it comes to Moyes and I just hope that your eloquently pitched views can open up some meaningful debate on where we go from here.
Ciaran Duff
6   Posted 21/10/2009 at 10:10:46

Report abuse

DM’s main "fault" is that he is a bit conservative. He has never made any apology for wanting to get results first and turning on the style later. We have seen in various games this year (eg Europa) that if we get an opportunity then we can & will play attractive & adventurous football.
IMHO, Moyes has built a very good team. The quality of the team compared to when he has taken over is unbelievable and without spending much money (nett). Sure, we don’t have a huge amount of squad depth, especially in MF but we have still handled injuries to key players very well. The mouth waters at an injury free Everton first XI.

All teams will have ups & downs (just look at the RS at the mo) but at Everton I feel that Moyes is a rock of stability. I ’m betting that we will get better and better as the season progresses. Keep the faith.
Just as a reality check, this time last year we had 8 points from 8 games.
Tony Williams
7   Posted 21/10/2009 at 10:40:46

Report abuse

What I don’t understand when people are having a go at the team/manager is when they state, "Don’t use the excuse of injuries and money"

Why not, aren’t they relevant and valid reasons why a team underperforms, it would be like when posters are defending the team were to say, "Don’t use the results and league position as an excuse"

Once I again I happily refer to our neighbours and their worst run in two decades because two players are injured and one, Carragher, having been hit by some sort of hoodoo.

You can’t open up a debate and then say you can’t use certain points in your response because you have heard them before. You have heard them before because they are the reason why the team is playing boring football. no creative players always equals no creativity in games.

The easiest solution to all these posters who seem they should be on suicide watch after viewing our games is that you stop watching them, it’s simple just check the papers/teletext/intternet after the game is finished to see what score it ended up and do something more enjoyable for a couple of hours. Ciaran did on Saturday.
Alan Clarke
8   Posted 21/10/2009 at 11:44:52

Report abuse

Tony, I can only assume that you don’t watch the games because you seem to think Moyes is above any criticism. If you sit through game after game of turgid dross then it begins to wear you down. Granted, we’ve had some good performances but I could almost name all of them for you. The bad games far outweigh the good ones by a mile.

Also if you’re comparing us to the red-shite then a lot of their criticism of the FSW is spot on too. They can’t cope with injuries because their manager has not spent wisely to cover for injuries to their key players. I would level the same criticism at Moyes. We are now 7 1/2 years into his reign. This is his team and his squad. It is unbalanced. We have tons of depth in defence but not enough in attack. We still don’t have an out and out winger. This highlights where Moyes’ priorities are - defence, not attack. Moyes is good at signing defenders, whereas he dithers over attackers - both Arteta and Pienaar were signed after a season loan. He tried to get Banega on loan first. Fernandes was signed only on loan. Yet Yobo aside, all his defenders were signed straight away.

This is the point of this article. Our football is too defensive and shite to watch. After 7 1/2 years in charge, it is not unfair to have a go at the manager and question the direction he’s taking us.
Tony Williams
9   Posted 21/10/2009 at 12:31:44

Report abuse

Alan, been a season ticket holder for years so less of they "I bet you don’t watch the game" rubbish hey?

I don’t think Moyes is above reproach at all but what I don’t do is blank out the reasons why our play has been so dire for a while now. As I said it’s a simple equation No Creative Players = No Creativity, it’s not rocket science is it?

"They can’t cope with injuries because their manager has not spent wisely to cover for injuries to their key players. I would level the same criticism at Moyes" So you are comparing Benitez’s hundreds of millions to Moyse’s amount now?

Good players do not want to come to us because we are a) Not in the Champions League b) Not winning anything and most importantly c) Cannot offer the ridiculous wages they want, ergo we cannot sign the better players who would drastically improve our onfield play.

We have to hope we get the diamond in the rough players that we have unearthed in the past because we simply cannot afford the Torres’ and Essiens of this world and without them our play will be the turgid dross we have had to endure the last two home games.

People will say but look at Wigan, West Brom and Fulham, they can pass well and look pretty, one side has just come out of the bottom three, one is in the Championship and I believe we will finish, once again above Wigan this season.
Steve Guy
10   Posted 21/10/2009 at 12:46:54

Report abuse

I’d like to say thanks to Shaun for having a critical approach to how we are performing at the moment without resorting to effing and blinding as well as quite rightly pointing out that the only ’cowards’ are effectively the ones who call Moyes such names frm the safety of their PC..

In previous seasons we have had the odd injury crisis and have either rode our luck or had a blip during that phase. We’re in one now and it’s only realistic to say we have been affected by the creative spine of our team (plus our best defender) being unavailable for what will eventually be a third of the season. To say we should be able to cope is unrealistic. Watch how Manure or the RS cope without their best players...........not !

I have had similar criticism of Osman (and Hibbert) before. Osman is capable of turning a game and is a great squad player. Would he be in Moyes’ first team if Pienaar, Billy and Arteta were fit ? Personally I doubt it. I think Billy was bought to play on the right with Pienaar on the left and Arteta pulling the strings in the middle (as he was so effectively doing when he got injured). Consequently and (obviously) assuming the players mentioned come back on schedule I see, post-Christmas, Osman and Hibbert warming the bench with Heitinga, Jags, Distin and Baines at the back, Arteta, Cahill and Neville in the middle, Pienaar and Billy wide with the Yak up front. Yes, this assumes we carry on playing 4-5-1, but we were playing some great football at the beginning of the year with most of the above players and that formation so why not ?

Separate point, why aren’t we on Five or ITV 4 tomorrow for what will probably be the best and certainly most high profile game of the night amongst British teams ? Disgraceful.
Dick Fearon
11   Posted 21/10/2009 at 12:27:23

Report abuse

Shaun Sparke, I emphatically agree with every word you say.

I hold several but now outdated coaching badges... My interest in that side of the game began 60 years ago on the parks of south Liverpool. I was a 10-year-old centre back and the only coaching advice I ever got was to get stuck in and boot the ball as hard and as far from our goal as possible. Surely, I thought there must be more to this game than that.

Then the magical Magyars took England to the cleaners and the so called Soccer Revolution started.

All these years later and nothing saddens and infuriates me more than to see our highly paid players mindlessly booting the ball as far as possible from our goal. Are we stuck in a time warp while the rest of football has moved on?

Rob Heib
12   Posted 21/10/2009 at 13:03:37

Report abuse

Honestly some people live in a fantasy land.

Shaun: "But if there isn’t a coach somewhere in the whole football fraternity that can’t make us start to play decent attractive football again then maybe it is time that we all gave up watching this game."

So you believe there is a manager out there who:

1) 1) Can certainly compete in the top flight even though he’s unproven (I say unproven because no Prem manager has done more with less than Moyes so this miracle worker can’t have coached in the Prem).

2) Can get teams to play attractive football despite not having the budget for top players. (Some big spending teams are accused of being too negative and boring and many of the teams that try to "look pretty" have had underwhelming finishes in the table. Arsenal arguably try to play the best football out of the top four and they are the least successful out of them in recent years.)

3) This manager, who can work miracles with little money, is completely unknown to the numerous Prem teams which have recently had coaching vacancies.

Not to mention nobody here can ever supply an alternative because "that’s not my job" — although determining tactics and substitutions isn’t your job either yet opinions are frequently forthcoming in that area. Strange double-standard there.

Shaun: "Oh, and I will pre-empt the question that somebody is bound to ask. Who would we get to replace him? That is not for me to decide, we have a chairman and a board to decide these matters."

Shaun: "I must have been to at least a thousand games and watched at least double that number on TV, so I do feel slightly qualified to offer the odd criticism of some of the tactics employed by David Moyes."

Exactly.

So, to summarize, there is a manager somewhere who can get us into the Champions League with the same budget Moyes has had (net spend practically bugger all), can also play attractive football while we’re doing it, yet no other Prem team has noticed him yet and nobody knows his name.

Oh and Bill Kenwright, the man who thinks moving the team to a stadium with no transportation is a good idea, is the right man to unearth this gem of a manager nobody else has found?

So do I have that perfectly reasonable argument straight?

Jonathan Fogg
13   Posted 21/10/2009 at 12:55:53

Report abuse

Tony Williams - I couldnt agree more. As a STH for Moyes reign I fee I can see a massive improvement in the quality of football from day 1 to now. In my opinion, most of this development happened in the 12-18 months leading up to Arteta’s injury.

Now to be fair, you could make a very good case for arguing that the entire Premier League has improved in the 7 years Moyes has been at the club (more money for everyone/more attractive place to play etc) and I would agree with this. Moyes/Everton is/are certainly not alone in making improvements in this time.

However, it is all relative, and his improvement, certainly in league position is fantastic. Yes he is defensive at times and his goal seems to be to aim to be "solid" above anything else, but I feel I have seen some really good play in recent seasons:

Steven and Baines down the left, Arteta instigating from the middle, nice triangles involving even the likes of Osman, Cahill and Fellaini, who are not the most gifted of individuals. Great goals from Saha/Yak upfront.

As Tony said, our most creative players are injured at present so just like the RS have suffered without you know who, we will also suffer, as would any other team in this situation. Anyone seen Utd play great football this season without Rooney, and Ronaldo now gone? Anyone seen Chelsea tear teams apart without Drogba and Lampard? Arsenal are perhaps the only exception I can think of who consistently play great football.

Solidity is king in the Premier League, Moyes plays percentages and it works. Let's get Steven and Arteta back, Billy settled and then judge the quality of the football. And when I say judge, I mean against the rest of the current Premier League, not Brazil 1970.

I’ve found that if you watch the rest of the Premier League on a weekly basis, that there is a LOT of hoofball, frantic activity around set pieces and a lot of balls into the box. Perhaps a little realism is required? That's my view anyway, Shaun, Kevin and Alan I respect your thoughts completely but maybe feel a little differently.

Alan Clarke
14   Posted 21/10/2009 at 13:41:29

Report abuse

Tony, so people like Shaun and people like my dad who’ve watched Everton for 40 - 50 years don’t hold a valid opinion on how crap Everton are to watch? We should all accept it because realistically we can’t expect anymore than the dross that’s being served up week-in, week-out? I wish my wife was as easily pleased as you seem to be.

If you read my post again, I am not comparing Benitez’s billions to Moyes’s amount but I am questioning how wisely Moyes has spent it. Benitez has had huge amounts and has not spent it wisely. Moyes has had smaller sums but in my opinion has still not spent it wisely.

We have a totally unbalanced squad. If you want to get into realism, why is our squad so top heavy with defensive players? Why can’t we cope with an injury to Arteta? Why does Moyes sign defenders straight away but dither over attacking ball playing midfielders? Is it possibly to do with his scouting? Why doesn’t he place more emphasis on trying to find another Arteta rather than another Jagielka?

I’ve been a season ticket holder since Howard Kendall’s third reign so most of my time watching Everton as a season ticket holder has been enduring shite football. There is disillusionment setting in certainly amongst the match going Evertonian and instead of moaning all the time, people will start to vote with their feet.

Peter McHugh
15   Posted 21/10/2009 at 14:01:15

Report abuse

Best article I’ve read for ages. I agree with most the points. I am still undecided about Moyes but my patience is wearing thin.

Rob Heib, I think it’s you who lives in a fantasy land. I’ll give you an example of a manager who does all those things you ask — there was a manager called Arsene Wenger, Arsenal’s board appointed him and nobody had heard of him. As to Kenwright being the man to find him, that’s a different argument, we’re talking about the manager.

By the way, Moyes has never qualified for the Champions League — we got knocked out in qualifying remember... or did you block that out in your fantasy world which says Moyes is the greatest manager that has ever lived?

By all means, stick up for Moyes, say his good points outweigh his bad, but don’t be so biased as to not acknowledge his limitations, current at least.

Dave Wilson
16   Posted 21/10/2009 at 13:16:11

Report abuse

I think Saturday's game had many of us thinking along the same lines Shaun.

I’m roughly the same age as you and would have endured the same highs and lows down the years, but this was different; as soon as I saw the teamsheet, I regreted passing up the opportunity to go to to Cheltenham.

The thought of doing something other than watching my beloved team play has never occured to me, not ever.

I can take dissapointment, we’ve all had to endure our fair share of that, I can even take poor performances, as long as I can see an intention to play the game, but to line-up the way we did against a newly promoted team was totally unacceptable.

The natives are restless ok Shaun. Evertonian patience — and loyalty — is being stretched to breaking point

A couple of years ago Moyes was visibly shocked when GP turned on him against Spurs. One more day like last Saturday and I believe the crowd reaction that night will seem mild in comparison. Davey Boy will be made to realise he isnt in the "15 million quid — no lose" situation he thought it was.

Martin Mason
17   Posted 21/10/2009 at 14:05:53

Report abuse

There is one word to describe the football that Everton serve up now and that is inexcusable (that is no excuses under any circumstances and how Liverpool cope without key players isn’t an excuse, it is an inexcusable problem for Liverpool).

To use Moore’s words when he sacked Carey "Everton Fans deserve better" (and by god they are going to get it). Us old-timers are in a very good position to understand what Everton has been and to put into true perspective the dreadful and artless tripe that they are currently serving up.

Moyes is a good man and has worked hard but he has zero creativity and even less flexibility — more a survivalist than a creator. As has been said before, we abandon 4-5-1 or die, this and multiple 1-0 wins with Cahill’s goals are gone, we have been rumbled. I will give Davie Moyes this season to show us that we can become a footballing side when all of the badly injured players are back but I feel that I’ll be disappointed.

He seems to be in the position that many managers find themselves in, even Ramsey and Erikson; a winning formation and winning players do not stay that way forever and teams need constant regeneration. Alex Ferguson is the absolute master of this as he has reinvented teams over and over again. Yes his players are better but football is a simple game played by simple youths.

There have been very good sides over the years with well managed players who were not exceptional. The Premier League has done many things but one is to produce teams like Everton and the above philosophy that only results and in particular staying in the Premier League matter. Surely that isn’t the be-all and end-all of spectator sport?

I have no answer to how we find a better manager but I’ve stopped watching Everton and I believe that football like this will create an Exodus of fans. I believe that gates of 40,000 show what a magnificent fan base we have as we have always had and we bloody well do deserve better.

Jonathan Fogg
18   Posted 21/10/2009 at 14:16:18

Report abuse

I make the squad list as follows:defenders: Neill, Jagielka, Distin, Yobo, Baines, Hibbert, Heitinga.

Midfield: Pienaar, Arteta, Osman, Fellaini, Bilyaletdinov, Cahill, Rodwell, Neville, Gosling.

Strikers: Yak, Saha, Jo, Vaughan, Anichebe.

In the midfield, I would for argument's sake say Rodwell & Neville are defensive midfielders (although I feel the former should be moulded to a Gerrard type player as he progresses). I feel the squad has a good balance as I make that 9 defensive players and 12 attacking minded players.

I do see your point Alan with regard to Arteta but then I would argue that to bring in someone as cover or even as a starting player that is of Arteta’s level would either take a stunning amount of money (you may argue Fellaini so fair enough — I would argue he is a long term replacement for Cahill) or some phenomenal player judgement again (Cahill, Arteta himself, Pienaar) allied with that eternal problem of availability. That is not easy no matter if you are Wenger or not.

I am not saying we should settle for the understudies we have for first team players but understand that is what they are — understudies. As per my previous post, no team can cope without their best players, we are no different.

Furthermore, let's not forget, Bily could develop into the player we both hope he will be and fill that creative void! Kudos to Shaun for beginning this interesting discussion.
Peter Griffin
19   Posted 21/10/2009 at 15:44:41

Report abuse

I don’t think it’s a case of how many defensive players we have against attacking players. It’s about having like for like cover. Jagielka is injured so Yobo comes in. JL went so Distin came in.

Arteta got injured and the players who have played there since haven’t been a similar player. Obviously not just in quality, but in mentality. We have seen Neville, Rodwell, Cahill, Osman, Fellaini and Heitinga play in his position and our performances have suffered. When Mikel moved into the middle we looked a very good side. Yet Pienaar or Bily, the most alike Arteta out of all our midfielders, haven’t played in the middle as playmaker.

Tony Williams
20   Posted 21/10/2009 at 16:42:29

Report abuse

"Tony, so people like Shaun and people like my dad who’ve watched Everton for 40 - 50 years don’t hold a valid opinion on how crap Everton are to watch?" Eh? Where did you get that from then?, my first sentence was in response to your sarcastic comment about not watching the game.

Everyone has views, I’m not saying they shouldn’t express them at all, never have, it’s just that it’s a "Big Yawn" re-reading all the same insults against certain players and the manager from the same people and watch other threads gets pulled into the exact same debates again and again and agian.

"There is one word to describe the football that Everton serve up now and that is inexcusable (that is no excuses under any circumstances and how Liverpool cope without key players isn’t an excuse, it is an inexcusable problem for Liverpool)" What? A dictonary definitaion of "excuse" is "to serve as justification for". So having no creative players on the pitch is not an excuse for a lack of creativity now?

The Redshite lose Torres and they have scored about 2 goals in 5 games, so justifying that with the loss of their best goalscorer and most influential midfielder is no longer excusable then? Damn those injuries, but don’t blame them.
Shaun Sparke
21   Posted 21/10/2009 at 16:49:36

Report abuse

Rob, thanks for your interesting but somewhat puzzling reply. I am not quite clear how you can take the emphasis away from the salient point I was trying to make regarding questioning the tactical prowess of Davis Moyes and turn it into some sort of personal attack regarding double standards.

As a fan I am entitled to express an opinion regarding our tactics and I qualify this by citing that I have watched many thousands of football games. I omitted saying that I have also played the game for over 25 years so think I have earned the right of having a football related opinion. I have never in all this time had to find a coach and employ one. I have also never served the tea or a pie behind the counter at Goodison, so I don’t feel qualified to offer an opinion on this either, but more importantly I am not really interested in that side of things. So my reluctance to offer an opinion on who should or shouldn’t be the next coach, is not the issue here. The issue is regards the type of football we are currently playing under the current coach. So please don’t put up a smokescreen of quoting back to me that which you either clearly don’t understand, or choose to ignore.
Brian Waring
22   Posted 21/10/2009 at 17:07:27

Report abuse

How come we always have someone say that "To play football you need money" FFS, no you don’t! My little lad plays in a under 11’s side. They are coached to pass and move, the league they play in has teams (like us) who are terrible to watch, but there is a couple of teams along with my lads, who pass the ball around, and for their age, can read the game quite well. Now it hasn’t taken money for them to do this, it has taken the skills of a good coach.
Rob Heib
23   Posted 21/10/2009 at 17:17:32

Report abuse

Peter McHugh: "Rob Heib, I think it’s you who lives in a fantasy land. I’ll give you an example of a manager who does all those things you ask — there was a manager called Arsene Wenger, Arsenal’s board appointed him and nobody had heard of him. As to Kenwright being the man to find him, that’s a different argument, we’re talking about the manager."

Peter, we here in fantasy land would like to inform you that Arsenal’s wage bill (last time I saw figures) was over 100 million pounds. Were we to apply that to EFC, we’d lose 60 million pounds a year. So I’m afraid, from my view in "fantasy land," I don’t see how that does all the things I asked because Wegner is not surviving on the same resources as Moyes. As people have to constantly be reminded on here, transfers are just one piece of the puzzle. Wages eat up a huge portion of revenue -- to compare Moyes to Wegner is insane when Wegner has an extra 60 million pounds per year to spend (whether Wegner spends that on transfers or wages it’s still money going out).

Any other suggestions?

Shaun Sparke: "So my reluctance to offer an opinion on who should or shouldn’t be the next coach, is not the issue here."

Shaun you don’t want it to be the issue but you acknowledge "the question someone is bound to ask." Why are they bound to ask a question which is "not the issue"? It’s a perfectly natural and inevitable question to ask someone saying what you are saying. You also said, "if there isn’t a coach somewhere in the whole football fraternity that can’t make us start to play decent attractive football again then maybe it is time that we all gave up watching this game." There may not be a question mark at the end but it’s inviting speculation on if there is a coach somewhere who could do that. In reply to that I speculated "no there isn’t" and asked for any examples (which so far nobody has been able to provide).

Jonathan Fogg: "I’ve found that if you watch the rest of the Premier League on a weekly basis, that there is a LOT of hoofball, frantic activity around set pieces and a lot of balls into the box. Perhaps a little realism is required?"

Agreed. Most managers are complete failures. They get fired a lot (not many have been in longer than Moyes). They get fired because they can’t get the teams to play attractive football and win games at the same time. It is fantasy to suggest otherwise. There are Arsenal fans who want Wenger fired (hasn’t won enough lately).

Shaun/Peter/Anyone: If you won’t answer the question of "who else?" then please answer me this ...

Outside of the very top clubs (Barca, Man U and so forth) how many fans do you think feel their club play attractive football and are happy with their table position/silverware?
Rob Heib
24   Posted 21/10/2009 at 17:35:47

Report abuse

Peter McHugh: "By the way, Moyes has never qualified for the Champions League — we got knocked out in qualifying remember... or did you block that out in your fantasy world which says Moyes is the greatest manager that has ever lived?"

LOL. Did I say Moyes was the greatest manager who has ever lived? I live in a fantasy world so I find it hard to remember what I wrote -- I don’t appear to have actually written that but I’ll trust your judgment over what is actually written down here.

As for the Champions League point, I was listing the attributes the hypothetical new manager would need to be better than Moyes. Therefore the new manager would need to consistently play attractive football (where Moyes does not) and would need to qualify for the CL proper (where Moyes has not). Hope that clears that part up for you.
Shaun Sparke
25   Posted 21/10/2009 at 19:01:49

Report abuse

Rob, I fear that you are in danger of tying yourself up in a knot here. I have no problems in you defending David Moyes that is your right. But if you are seriously trying to tell me that there isn’t a coach in this world who could do better than David Moyes has done, then I think your argument loses any credibility.

I do not have the necessary inside knowledge to put up a possible candidate, hence my reluctance to do so. I could throw a few names around but what would be the point of that? David Moyes is the manager and it is likely that he is going to remain so for the forseeable future. But that should not prevent us as paying customers from offer criticism when we think it is necessary. (Now I wonder which part of this reply you are going to quote back at me)
Steve Pugh
26   Posted 21/10/2009 at 19:18:47

Report abuse

Having been involved in kids football for years, the teams that are able to pass and move are the teams that refuse to give lower ability kids the chance to play football. Those kids end up with the teams that are ugly to watch. It is not down to the ability of the coach, it is due to the win at all costs mentality that is ruining kids football.

If coaches at this level were so good, they would not remain at this level, they would end up at worst in the lower reaches of the semi-pro game.

Dave Wilson
27   Posted 21/10/2009 at 20:02:26

Report abuse

Rob, to answer your question, The overwhelming majority of Arsenal, Man City, Spurs, Sunderland and Wigan fans are delighted with the way their teams are playing and with their table position.
The article concentrates only on Everton and rightly draws attention to the growing number of blues who are heartily sick of our teams style of play.
To be honest mate, most of us couldn't give a toss about whats happening elsewhere.
Rob Heib
28   Posted 21/10/2009 at 19:58:55

Report abuse

Shaun Sparke: "Rob, I fear that you are in danger of tying yourself up in a knot here. I have no problems in you defending David Moyes that is your right. But if you are seriously trying to tell me that there isn’t a coach in this world who could do better than David Moyes has done, then I think your argument loses any credibility."

Am I saying there is NO coach in the world? No ... there could be a few. However, the bulk of them already have jobs they have no intention of leaving.

Let us assume that Brian Waring (and many like him) are correct. That money isn’t such an overwhelming factor. That one can play attractive football (and win) without huge money. Fair enough. So why doesn’t anyone? There are chairmen and/or directors whom have decades of experience, a team of advisers and so forth and thus far (in the past decade or so) every single one (probably over 30 different teams with promotion/relegation) have failed in this regard. Nobody (aside from the teams with money) have had consistent success. A few have grabbed a Cup here or there (and in many cases didn’t play attractive football while doing it) but then fallen off the pace the next year.

Okay so forget results. What teams play attractive football? Would you all be happy playing a more attractive passing game all the way down into the Championship (as a few have)? Probably not. How about mid-table? What examples are there of a consistently (year to year) fun to watch team? If Everton aren’t on TV what teams do you enjoy watching?

Basically, as I asked before, how many fans do you think feel their club play attractive football and are happy with their table position/silverware?

I keep seeing people write things like "surely someone can do better." What basis is there for "surely"? What game do you watch? I watch a game in which nobody has ever managed it (in the modern era). Does this mean it’s impossible? Of course not. But you can’t say "surely" about something which hasn’t been done in the modern game. If the best example anyone can come up with is Wenger (with 60 million pounds extra spent on wages) then things aren’t looking good.

As you (kind of) asked "if there isn’t a coach somewhere in the whole football fraternity that can’t make us start to play decent attractive football again then maybe it is time that we all gave up watching this game." I am suggesting maybe there isn’t (that money is too much of an overwhelming factor) and if that is truly your feeling then maybe you are in a bad position.

You seem to have some optimism that it’s possible. "Surely" it can be done. I’m genuinely curious what basis there is for that belief. I certainly hope it can be done. I think rolling the dice on an unproven manager is a momentous gamble and wonder how someone watches the same game (with so many managers fired and so many teams finishing below us) and feels it’s anything but a million in one shot for a team with limited resources to find a manager good enough to accomplish what you all require.

I’d love it too and if it’s not Moyes then so be it; he’s not my Dad I have no vested interest aside from an enormous lack of faith in most other managers.
Rob Heib
29   Posted 21/10/2009 at 20:31:22

Report abuse

Dave Wilson: "The overwhelming majority of Arsenal, Man City, Spurs, Sunderland and Wigan fans are delighted with the way their teams are playing and with their table position."

At this time last season (or thereabouts) Villa were thrilled too. Let’s see it maintained for some time. However there is a common denominator there with most of those teams which I’ll let others speculate on.
Shaun Sparke
30   Posted 21/10/2009 at 20:59:11

Report abuse

Simple question here Rob: Do you agree with having all eleven men defending a corner when we are playing Wolves at home?
Shaun Sparke
31   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:01:03

Report abuse

Another simple question here Rob: Are you happy with the current style of football being produced at Goodison?
Shaun Sparke
32   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:02:51

Report abuse

Yet another simple question Rob: Do you think that Everton will ever become a good pasing team under the stewardship of David Moyes?
Dave Wilson
33   Posted 21/10/2009 at 20:55:11

Report abuse

Rob, You asked a question and I gave you five answers.

Moyes has been with us 7 seasons and we are STILL dire to watch, Martinez and Bruce have got their teams — with far less talented individuals — playing better football in 7 weeks

It's about intent; some managers feel an obligation to entertain... others don't.
Steve Pugh
34   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:17:37

Report abuse

how often do we hear "we switched off" coming from arsenal players or indeed wenger? they obviously know this is a regular occurence so why the HELL dont they sort it out!!!!! You never see Man Utd "switching off" and you know why? because Ferguson would go absolutely mental. Arsene Wenger needs to deal with this, losing cheap goals is happening far too often for my liking, and againt the bigger teams, we’ll plain simply get hammered!

thats one of them happy Arsenal fans that is.
Brian Waring
35   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:35:25

Report abuse

Err, well I can prove you wrong there Steve. The same team of lads at the begining of last season couldn’t win a game to save their life, the coach who was in charge then decided he had had enough and called it a day.

The dad of one of the players took over, all of a sudden the kids were enjoying training etc. The next 4 or 5 games after he took over, even though they still didn’t win a game you could see a difference, all of a sudden they just clicked, and never lost a game for the rest of the season, they are 7 games into the new season and have won 5 lost 1 and drawn 1.

Two of the players have been invited to go and train with Readings youth set - up, this was a bunch of kids, who couldn’t put two passes togethor for the first half of last season, now they are more attractive to the eye than us! Surely the coach has some input to this turn around?

Rob Heib
36   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:55:56

Report abuse

This is going to be far too long for anyone to read so if you’re not inclined skip it rather than posting any snide comments about length. ;)

Dave Wilson: "You asked a question and I gave you five answers. Martinez and Bruce have got their teams - with far less talented individuals - playing better football in 7 weeks."

A couple of points:

As Steve pointed out, I see a staggering amount of Arsenal fans on F365 and other sites calling for Wenger to go at various points. They may just be the vocal minority though. Squeeky wheel and all ... we all know all too well how that works around here.

As I said, there is a common denomintor for many of those teams (more money).

For the likes of the others... it’s eight bloody games. And I’m no more going to anoint Spurs as a shining example of anything than I was to think they were going to be relegated not too long ago when they were absolutely dire and sitting in the relegation zone.

However, if you value attractive football over all else (including results) and would be happy finishing lower in the table (like those two teams have most years) then so be it. Fair play I can’t argue with that. If your argument is based on attractive football AND good results then I will need to see at least a year (if not two or three) of consistency rather than eight or nine games.

Shaun Sparke: [[ Simple question here Rob. Do you agree with having all eleven men defending a corner when we are playing Wolves at home?]]

Shaun, that’s three simple questions you asked me when you ignored my one. However I will give you the courtesy of an answer even when you won’t extend the same to me.

Honestly, and you probably won’t like this but it’s my honest answer, I too have watched football for many years and I don’t think I know better than Moyes. Would I have eleven back for a corner? Probably not. However we’d be losing by 10-0 by halftime based on my other horrible coaching decisions so what I do on corners is neither here nor there. I’m sure he has his reasons based on the flow of the game and how well we are dealing with set pieces. I probably would not do this all the time (which I don’t think we do either) but there would certainly be instances in which I would. Wolves at home? Probably not. Fair enough. MOYES OUT!

Shaun Sparke: "Another simple question here Rob. Are you happy with the current style of football being produced at Goodison?"

At times yes; at times no. Generally, when we play well (which we do on occasion) I am happy. I do not ignore those instances even in the face of such adversity as our current seven game undefeated streak.
Rob Heib
37   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:56:13

Report abuse

Shaun Sparke: "Yet another simple question Rob. Do you think that Everton will ever become a good pasing team under the stewardship of David Moyes."

Yes I do Shaun and if you’re interested in a conversation rather than an argument then this is my most important point and one which probably sums up our entire argument:

I believe that the money factor is an almost (if not entirely) insurmountable obstacle in the modern game. I base this primarily on looking at the table at the end of the year (not after 8 games).

To break down that wall (without funds) is a momentous task and one which cannot be accomplished in a couple of years. I have absolutely no idea how long it takes but 8-10 years wouldn’t surprise me. It’s a gargantuan ask. Firing a manager sets you back a huge way — possibly to the very start.

Again, while others may not give a toss about other teams, it’s valid to point out that teams whose table positions, silverware and resources we envy (which like it or not right now includes the RS bastards) look almost hopeless missing their two best players. We play better with Pienaar in. We play better with Arteta in. Take them both out and we don’t look as good. The fact we don’t have creative backup players is because we don’t have any money (sorry to bring it full circle). I don’t consider that a failing of Moyes but of our board.

Anyway I don’t see much point in carrying on with this (aside from the following 1000 words) as I’ve written way too much. You guys have your viewpoint and I doubt it can be changed (and I am guilty in that regard too) and I’ve certainly said more than enough on the subject. It doesn’t feel like a conversation so let’s drop the pretense that you’re actually considering anything I’m saying. On the off chance anyone is I’ll leave you all with this final thought:

I follow two N. American sports and in the two I follow we had coaches who had actually won a trophy. One had some ups and downs but was fired after two winning seasons in a row. One title, two winning seasons in a row -- almost all the fans agreed with the firing because surely someone could do better. We are now winless and possibly the worst team in the league. Same in the other sport, had a great coach who has won it all but he didn’t win every year so he had to go (everyone agreed). So then we finished last, fired his replacement a few months into the season because he was such an atrocity, and have yet to recover.

I think if there was more acknowledgment of what a massive gamble it is I’d have more in common with "the other side" of Evertonians. There is no "surely it can be done" in the game I watch -- I haven’t seen a team consistently play attractive football and challenge the CL spots in the modern era.

Last year it was Villa everyone went on about -- how come Villa can do it when Moyes can’t? We can find messages where people make the same points they are making now only they used Villa as an example. They didn’t break the glass ceiling and fell apart -- so I’m not going to make any opinions based on eight bloody games of a season (or even 16).

You know who probably will finally break it? City. Draw your own conclusions on why but I don’t think it’s because their manager is better than Moyes.

Money is the elephant in the room and those who ignore it hide behind "I’m not a chairman" or "I don’t give a toss about other teams" when one tries to rationally draw comparisons to determine what may or may not be possible for a team of our resources.

That’s why I said fantasyland because there simply isn’t any team without money that consistently wins and plays attractive football. What have I had for examples are "look at this team of under 11’s" or "look at Arsenal" as if they are comparable in some way. I’m the one in fantasyland when those are the comparisons I should consider? Seriously? So be it. I’m off to fantasyland. Enjoy reality ... I hope none of you ever get your wish as it pertains to Moyes because I think you’ll be in for more reality than you can handle.
Derek Thomas
38   Posted 21/10/2009 at 21:50:28

Report abuse

I caught a bit of the AZ ALKMAR Vs Arsenal game on the end of something I recorded. about 20 mins in it caught my eye and I really paid attention. As we all know we played then the season before last, so most of what was there then was there now.

Now the Gunners are no mugs when it comes to passing, but I sat there and counted FORTYSEVEN passes while AZ moved it around, not aimless passing either, probe up one wing, nearly but not quite lose it, but still retain possession pass it about, up the other wing looking for a way in, no way in, shuffle it about, try and draw them in, back up the wing.

This want on for 3 and a half mins, this is an eternity in the prem.

In that time AZ touched the ball about 150 times and the Arse FOUR!! all of them to give away throws or fouls.

Yes I know that the Gunners went into the lead and AZ ended up getting a draw so so much for fancy dan tippy tappy stuff.

But the point is we beat them So the balance lies somewhere in the middle, pass, move, pass, move, slow, slow, quick, quick ,slow.

Yeah but they’re Dutch, not all of them, not by a long chalk, one was a young Aussie.

No big names, no mega buys, but it shows what can be done if you have the will and the balls to try it.

WE USED TO CALL IT FOOTBALL.
Shaun Sparke
39   Posted 21/10/2009 at 22:18:23

Report abuse

Sorry Rob, I missed your question, probably due to your insistence of quoting back that which has already been written. It makes your replies difficult to read and affects the structure of any argument that you may wish to present.

To answer the question you asked. How can I possibly say how other people feel about their clubs? This would mean pure speculation on my behalf and would have absolute no basis on any facts. If I told you that Stoke fans were delighted with the way their team played. Could you prove or disprove this statement. So how can you ask me to do this?

My article is about Everton and how I perceive the direction that Moyes is taking us. I don’t present it as an absolute truth, but I do have a large circle of Evertonian friends who are content to debate like adults without reverting to fantasy land insults. The general consensus of opinion amongst this diverse group is that the standard of football under the management of Moyes is not pleasing on the eye. Yes, he has done wonders with our league positions, and for that he deserves praise, but I still maintain that if he was a little more adventurous he could achieve so much more with the same players at his disposal.

Of course money is relevant, nobody is saying that it isn’t, but you don’t need to spend mega millions to encourage even players of moderate ability to pass a ball to a member of their own team, and not to revert to hoofing it up field to a lone striker in the hope that he may get lucky.

I think that we will have to agree to disagree on this. I am always open to a rational debate and if an argument is put strong enough to me I am capable of seeing the validity of it even if I am opposed to it.

I value your input as an Evertonian but we just have different views on the way we want to see football played and how it can be achieved.
Dave Wilson
40   Posted 22/10/2009 at 06:47:47

Report abuse

Rob

For some reason you and Steve seem to think the contentment of the Arsenal fans has something to do with this debate, it doesn’t, but to put it in perspective :
If you ask 60,000 Arsenal fans if they would swap their teams style of play with any team in the world, most of them would say no, if you asked them if they would swap for Evertons style, ALL of them would say no
If you asked 100 Everton fans if they would trade for Arsenals style of play ALL of them would snatch your hand off.

No comparisons to be made here guys

Back to the article, its about Everton and you ask do I prefer attractive football to league position, but I dont see why it has to be either/or, I said earlier I can forgive a poor performance as long as my team are sent out to play, I cant/wont accept my team being sent out to merely stifle the opposition, I’m having real trouble justifying the amount of money I am spending to watch Everton right now.
I’m not speaking for anyone else, that’s just the way I see it

Add Your Comments

In order to post a comment to Fan Articles, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.

Log in now

Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and MailBag submissions across the site.



© ToffeeWeb

About these ads


Latest News


Betting Promo Codes

Bet on Everton and get a deposit bonus with bet365 at TheFreeBetGuide.com



Recent Articles


About these ads



Talking Points & General Forum

Pinned Links

OK

We use cookies to enhance your experience on ToffeeWeb and to enable certain features. By using the website you are consenting to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.