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The Road Ahead...

By Ciaran Armstrong :  29/11/2009 :  Comments (16) :
Despite the insistence of the national press that the No vote for DK was a body blow to all Everton fans, we all really know it has given us the chance of a glittering future.

The eyes of the footballing world could once again turn to Goodison Park, when a redeveloped stadium hosts vital group games or a knockout match at the 2018 World Cup... '66 revisited? An enticing vision. We wouldn't even bother to bid if we'd gone to KirKby — it would be too embarrassing! Anyone who hasn't fully studied the outline by Tom Hughes on this site should do so now.

Results have been poor this season (no getting around it) but the performance against Liverpool shows me that, even with an understrength team, we should be able to compete. With the return of key players for the 2nd half of the season, we can still maintain our run of top six finishes. No other teams outside the usual top three have been fantastic... City spent loads of money but they haven't got a striker to match Saha's return — even though he's hardly played. Spurs, Villa etc look classy at times, vunerable and dull at others.

The management of the club has been a shambles for years, but the management of the team has been nothing short of miraculous since DM arrived. Manager of the Year every season in most people's eyes, some in the media are now calling Roy Hodgson "this year's David Moyes" for his efforts at Fulham in 2009. Most of the other managers also don't have to deal with an incompetent chairman like DM does — anyone who believes the turmoil off the pitch doesn't affect the players or manager is blinkered.

With this in mind, the club should now follow these guidelines...

i) Get someone like Tom Hughes on board to help as an advisor, in regards to potential new investors and the redevelopment of Goodison Park. The fans need to feel their interests are being looked after and a liason between them and the club would go some way towards that.

ii) Get assurances from LCC that they will assist the club to redevelop our beloved home or find us another SUITABLE site — even if they will only agree to work with a new board/ owners to make it happen.

iii) Back David Moyes financially so we have a side capable of continuing to make a mark on the Premier League and attract a global audience and thus investment.

iv) Book Maroune Fellaini in for a hair cut and give Tim Cahill some time off to recharge his batteries!

The future won't be easy but at least it can still be great. The club has a history of greatness, of vision, of success... We need to build on those values. The board have to fall on their swords; the players have to stand up and be counted; the fans have to be positive.

Nil Satis Nisi Optimum.

Reader Comments

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Mike McLean
1   Posted 30/11/2009 at 05:23:32

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"The club has a history of greatness, of vision, of success..."

And seemingly, a more recent history of delusion.

Fifteen trophies in 130 years and average crowds in the 35,000 region. Our greatest ever player called a drunkard in public by a club official, the sale of Mercer, Lawton, Ball and the more recent examples. No ground investment worth speaking of since God was a kid.

The truth is more along the lines of "Anything Seems To Satisfy".

Had you written something along the lines of the top flight’s most long suffering, loyal fans deserve greatness, vision and success, I’d be with you.
Mark Murphy
2   Posted 30/11/2009 at 10:01:11

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"Even with an understrength team, we should be able to compete."

That's what I thought... so why haven't we??
Chad Earle
3   Posted 30/11/2009 at 10:13:07

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The difference between Everton and the other pretenders to the top four finish (City, Spurs and Villa), is that the other three teams have had some impressive performances this season. Can you name one of Everton’s?

I’m not panicking yet but unless we have a step change in endeavour we are going to be in a relegation scrap for sure. We are a team of one half at the moment. We either fail to see out the match through lack of fitness or we get going too late and then we are chasing the game.

The only way to overcome a lack of technical ability is to make sure the team is incredibly fit and never stop running. We need to get the players doing boot camp circuits. Remember last year, we harried and we hassled and we defended in numbers and teams found it so difficult to get behind us. This year we seem to be giving teams all the time in the world to get their crosses in.

Why has it taken so long for Yakubu to get fit? He’s still well short of his best. I think it’s boiling down to the training sessions. They are obviously not pushing the players enough. Pienaar has just come back after a lengthy break and look how sharp and quick he still looks. I think it must be some players' attitude to putting the effort in that’s the problem and maybe they are a soft touch on the training ground? Get them doing grid sprint, after grid sprint, after grid sprint!

A super fit side is a super competitive side!

James Stewart
4   Posted 30/11/2009 at 10:54:57

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The last thing i would do would be to give DM anymore money! The ship is already sinking and he would only waste it on my Right backs!
Mark Murphy
5   Posted 30/11/2009 at 11:10:10

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James, are your right backs any good?

Sorry...
Brian Waring
6   Posted 30/11/2009 at 11:30:28

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"With an understrength team, we should be able to compete."

If that's the case, then why are we 3 pts off a relegation place? And only 2 pts from a possible 18, against those giants of the prem Burnley, Bolton, Fulham, Hull, Wolves and Stoke.
The other worrying thing is that, even though we played well yesterday, we were still beaten by a poor redshite side.

Jay Harris
7   Posted 30/11/2009 at 14:14:52

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Brian, that's a point I was going to make.

That is the WORST Liverpool performance I have ever seen in the last 50 years. Yet we still conceded 2.

It is our defensive midfield organisation that is the problem ever since Carsley left and that, combined with stupid half-hearted attempts from Yobo/Distin to clear or block the ball, is casing us to leak goals like a sieve.
Chris Butler
8   Posted 30/11/2009 at 16:33:50

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Spurs have been impressive, Manchester City have not hit form yet despite having numerous players that would be our best players. Aston Villa weren’t impressive either.
Ian Jones
9   Posted 30/11/2009 at 18:54:20

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Our defence is shit. Yobo, Distin, Hibbert and Howard are all Championship players — only Baines shows any poterntial to improve, and I'm not 100 % about him.
Ray Robinson
10   Posted 30/11/2009 at 20:09:14

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Gosh, Cieran you’re an optimist!

"With the return of key players for the 2nd half of the season, we can still maintain our run of top six finishes" - I do wish people would stop trotting this line out for two reasons: first, have you seen our set of fixtures until the end of February? Secondly, why is it assumed that the likes of Arteta and Jagielka will regain their pre-injury form straight away? It could be NEXT season before we see the best of them - if we ever do, again.

I’m normally a glass half full guy when it comes to Everton but I can see a relegation struggle ahead at worst and a top half finish at best.

And as for the World Cup stadium by 2018, well if that happens, there must be a Santa.
Ciaran Armstrong
11   Posted 30/11/2009 at 20:58:37

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I may be optimistic Ray, but am I missing something?

You’re not the first person in the last week to mention our fixtures either side of New Year... but Spurs have only won one Prem game away from home since August - and that was against a shocking Pompey side!
After Chelsea we have three winnable games against Brum, Sunderland and Burnley. Then after a trip to the Emirates it’s City, Sunderland (again) and Wigan.
If we play as well as we did yesterday, and avoid some shocking one-off mistakes, we can win six games by the time we go to Anfield.
February does look shocking to be fair... but the upside is we then have just one tough looking game (away to Villa) in March, April and May.

Every cloud...
Ciaran Armstrong
12   Posted 30/11/2009 at 21:09:09

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ps. I love Santa!
Anthony Bailey
13   Posted 30/11/2009 at 21:43:37

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I think Ciaran is right, especially about Fellaini’s hair!

There is no doubt we have been shocking up until the Liverpool match. In that game we were without doubt the best team and shouldnt of lost BUT we did and fair play to them for capitalising on it. If we continue to play like that then we will win games and we will shoot back up the table. If we dont then it is a relegation battle.

The other ’top six contenders’ have also not really done that great (except Spurs) and now Arsenal have lost RVP expect them to lose more games as everything went through him. We have been missing our best players since the start of the season (I include Yak in this as even though he plays he is nowhere near match fitness) and any team with these type of injuries will suffer. That doesnt excuse our performances in any way shape or form, but on Sunday it clicked again I dont in any way shape or form expect Moyes to settle for anything less.

Its not going to completely click straight away and I still expect to lose at Spurs and maybe by a couple as our defence is shit, there is no escaping that fact. AEK will also be hard to win because we will have more players out but I expect a close game.
Chad Earle
14   Posted 01/12/2009 at 09:22:04

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Why didn’t we play like that in all those awful matches? We certainly wouldn’t be in the mess we are in now. That has to be down to the manager.

Having Piennar back is absolutely crucial to our climb back up the table but THAT defence needs addressing and quick. Last term after the Villa game at Goodison, we conceded less goals than every other Premier League team. That’s the level of endeavour we have to get back to.
Lee Hind
15   Posted 01/12/2009 at 09:36:09

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Yobo, Distin, Hibbert and Howard are all Championship players — only Baines shows any poterntial to improve, and I’m not 100 % about him

Tosh...Howard is a great keeper, prone to the odd error but who isn’t. Distin and Yobo will be fine if they can sort out between them who does what.

Hibbert, yes ok you can have that one.
Ciarán McGlone
16   Posted 01/12/2009 at 09:50:21

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Hibbert, yes ok you can have that one
----------------------------

Myopic.

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