All Things Everton

By Ian   Adams  ::  21/07/2011   29 Comments (»Last)

I have been reading ToffeeWeb for a good few years now and like many of you visit the site numerous times daily for any latest developments ? this along with the Official shite... sorry, 'site'... and some other fanzine websites.

Like most of you, I am getting pissed off with what is happening at and to "The People's Club" ? My club! I have supported Everton for as long as I can remember; I witnessed the 1980s revolution and glorious times, witnessed the awful 1990s (1995 apart) and the improved new millennium including the stagnation of recent years. I read with interest people?s letters and articles and now I want to put my side across. I will cover a number of topics so please bear with me!

I was a season-ticket holder for many years until I moved away with work in the mid-90s, moving back to the area in 2007, getting a new season-ticket in the Park End until this season. The reason for not renewing was due to being pissed off for most of last season, turning up to watch an utterly shite performance unless it was against the alleged top 4. I was and am pissed off with all the broken promises of new signings ?in place for the start of pre-season?. I will go the games this season but won?t have to suffer the Stoke, Blackburn, Wolves and West Brom negative bollocks!

Chairman/Owner

Bill, Bill, Bill! I was as overjoyed as anybody when he took over from the previous person, rejoicing that the Blues will be back (How many times we said that?) but Bill has not taken us forward. In fairness, he has taken us as far was he can but, let?s face it, we reached that in 2004 ? 7 years ago!

Bill is a blue but he has to stop hiding behind this ?one of you? mentality as our club is suffering. It is not feasible that these clubs being taken over are any move attractive than Everton ? we have a long history of firsts and the record books and football history highlights Everton.

When we lost the debacle of the Kings Dock, we lost the faith of investors or suitors. Mr Kenwright, that I am afraid is down to you. If we would have moved to the Kings Dock, you can bet the Abu Dhabi family from down the Lancs would have come to us. City had a ground that would attract investment; for god?s sake they were in the third tier of English football a few years ago. Bill ? stand down please, you have no business mind and are leading us to ruin.

Business

We are allegedly a multi-national brand but we are poor in the sense of business and we need to get this right in order to be attractive to investors. Our club shop is poor and it seems that we rail out all the poorest quality products on match day. The Everton 2 store could also be improved but take away the club shops and where can you buy Everton merchandise ? Kitbag! Not exactly a household name, but this follows the disaster that was the JJB deal which hardly had any Everton stock outside of Merseyside. We are sponsored by Le Coq Sportif ? again not the most universally admired brand and producers of some remarkably awful kits, although this year?s offerings are the best of the past few years.

Our corporate facilities are poor; the Park End plan (Everton Place) has gone tits-up and is an embarrassment for our club. The Chang deal was improved but still poor compared to other sponsorship deals in the Premier League, and the decision not to play Tim Howard in his native country is ridiculous.

The facilities at the ground are appalling with more often than not, the TVs not working and this with the ridiculous price of a pint and shit food, none of which goes back into the club or you wouldn?t mind paying. A simple thing such as bins both in and out of the ground would make a massive improvement and revenue of selling advertising space. Surely a club of our stature should be able to secure a car deal so the players have a company car for advertising ? all revenue. What about a suit deal or an airline firm for travelling instead of old hoarding advertising cabs!! We are a top 10 Premier League club after all, the most watched league in the world. There are so many tricks we are missing.

Managers

Howard Kendall will always be an Everton legend for the 1980s glory years and can be forgiven for the other two stints in the 1990s. It was a shame he left us after the success of the 80s but you can?t blame him or the players of the time for moving on following the European ban ? aimed at stopping our dominance I still maintain!

Colin Harvey proved that a good coach doesn?t make a good manager and unfortunately started our demise ? a hero nevertheless!

Mike Walker... what were we thinking!

Big Joe Royle ? a legend and top manager who was let down by the board... sound familiar?

Walter Smith ? a big name with a proven success rate but played some negative football; however, again was set up by the board, which brings us to...

David Moyes. I am a fan of Moyesie and am aware he has his doubters on this site; however, what he has done for our club is amazing, this despite his sometimes boring tactics... and, I have to say, the single striker at home drives me up the wall. I was laughing my head off when Liverpool employed Hodgson and even more when they brought back Dalglish ? the pair of them not in the same league as David Moyes.

Goodison Park

Goodison in its current state is not fit for attracting revenue and investment. I love Goodison and still get the hairs on my neck coming up when I go up the steps... but we are not on par with our peers. Ground share? NO! ? we are Everton and demand and deserve our own ground. The board have to stop looking at the easy option and go out and find the money for re-developing our HOME. When you look at the likes of Upton Park, White Hart Lane and Ibrox for example, all in similar locations and all re-developed.

Players

We need new players to keep the rest on their toes and get this completion for places that we all crave. The decision to let Vaughan go and keep Victor was astonishing ? I am sorry, Victor, but you are not Everton and spend more time sulking than playing.

John Heitinga ? if you?re not interested, then go ? I am sick of the regular articles about you wanting to move for your ambitions, then, when it doesn?t come off, you love the club again.

I don?t know what happened between the manager and the Yak last year but personally I thought the Yak was coming on well and then we let him go on loan! Beckford ? make or break this year mate, stop thinking about it and trust your instinct!

It is a sad state of affairs when Stoke and Sunderland are outspending Everton. So where has the recent money gone? Vaughan cash, the cash for the loan players as well as the wages saved, the Pienaar cash and the extended Chang deal, all approximately £10 million ? where is it? ? our money...

I will always support Everton and like all will be checking the internet before I go to bed every night but I have to say that I fear for my beloved blues unless we make some sound business moves. Over to you, Mr Elstone ? earn your praise instead of just writing your self-righteouspersonal blog! COYB

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Gavin Ramejkis
1   Posted 21/07/2011 at 21:07:27

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Nice article and have to say I agree with pretty much all of it but I'd aim a good salvo at Moyes for his silent backing of Kenshite and his truly atrocious (even for him) brand of football for too much of last season, he also needs a rocket or size eight up his arse.
Dave Lynch
2   Posted 21/07/2011 at 21:14:17

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Sorry to point this out. But...

You cannot scoff at Dalgliesh, as much as I despise the redshite and all they stand for (arrogant bastards without an ounce of humility in them), he is a proven winner, both as a player and a manager. Moyes was neither and I for one am sick of defensive protect-what-you-have football.

Even though, I realise that to get rid of him would be the worst thing for us at present and we would undoubtably be relegated with a Jones or Megson.

Dalgliesh will have this season to prove if he still has what it takes to be a winner. Moyes unfortunately has had 10 years and proved he is not. We'll never be relegated while he is at the helm and that's all I have come to expect from him.

Jimmy Sorheim
3   Posted 21/07/2011 at 21:12:56

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Too bad we don't see the Pienaar and Vaughan money being used to buy a new striker. I say again, John Carew is a free agent and would be a much needed player for us, but no, we can't even bring in a freebee. It is indeed tragic.

The only thing I can do as a supporter is to stick by the players we have got, and try to be positive when I am feeling we should be getting at least a direct replacement for James Vaughan. It is a testament to the poor financial skills of Bill Kenwright that we are witnessing now.

Anyhow, I strongly believe that we have to get into Europe this year, if not then we are looking at a grim time when it comes to transfers in to this club. I feel Moyes should be doing much more than he is currently doing. If strapped for cash then you sell off one or two players that you feel are expendable. I feel that Rodwell and Heitinga are players that we can afford to sell without taking a hit. Fellaini must be signed on for another couple of years, if this can't be done then he must be sold.

I do feel it will have to be either Rodwell or Fellaini that has to go in order for us to get enough spending power. Though I favour Fellaini staying because I think he is top class when not out injured (which he is a lot of the time) but something has to happen NOW, or in the alternative we have to get into Europe THIS year.

It is do or die time as they say, the players and Moyes have to step up to the plate and show what they are all about. I feel Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United will be the three at the top, they are unbeatable. They have bought smart and good so it will take something really special for us to come higher than 4th place. Arsenal and Tottenham are our direct competitors for the 4th place.

If we could start strong and be amongst the 4 best come January than I belive we are in good shape. However, if Moyes even thinks about using Anichebe, than we can forget about Europe as well. He is a terrible striker, who never scores or does anything useful for that matter. So I hand the ball to you, Moyes, don't screw it up!!

Declan Brown
4   Posted 21/07/2011 at 21:44:11

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Good article to read Ian, quite enjoyed and agreed with most of it.

Have to agree with Dave (post 2) regarding Dalgleish. Say what you want about the man, but he's a winner, both on the pitch and as a manager, his haul of medals backs this up. I hated Liverpool with such a passion in recent times down to that ignoramus Benitez but Kenny has more to him, you may not like him, but you respect him begrudgingly.

Don't compare Davey to Kenny, Davey has a long way to go yet. Davey has done good but he's not in Dalgleish's league when it comes to achievements, but he is a better manager than Hodgson.

The more I think of Kings Dock and read the recent stuff posted on ToffeeWeb, the more I think that it was our moment of truth, the crossroads, the moment of destiny, that point in history where it either goes good or bad. If we had got the Kings Dock, God knows where we'd be now, I'd guess that it would be nowhere near as bad as this summer has been.

Kenwright has a lot to answer for regarding KD, sadly that for me this will be the main legacy he leaves behind, this I feel has led to the current and ongoing financial ruination of our club. His crime sheet is becoming pretty impressive for efforts to be seen as completely incompetent, but his involvement in screwing up the Kings Dock opportunity is by far the worst and most soul-destroying.

It has been a horrible summer. Seen some dark days myself (been a supporter for 25 years now, it was a family thing) but can't express strong enough how disappointing and frustrating the last few seasons have been. I know we do things "The Everton Way" but it's taking the full packet of biscuits now!

I continue to support Everton and follow football but it's with a very heavy and sometimes empty heart these days and not with the youthful eagerness of years gone by.

Hopefully it will get better for both Everton and football in general but I'm not holding my breath.

Gavin Ramejkis
5   Posted 21/07/2011 at 23:57:36

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Sorry to bring a bad rumour to the table but just read a tweet saying Arteta arrived in Washington on crutches, hope its bollocks
Steven Pendleton
6   Posted 22/07/2011 at 01:12:44

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Good article, Ian. The Heitinga point I gotta say I disagree with, as I would rather a player with ambition to state this point to let the powers that be know that they ALSO have an issue with the current state of affairs of our stagnant club.
Eric Myles
7   Posted 22/07/2011 at 05:12:25

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Read it and weep Gavin

http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/everton-fc/everton-fc-news/2011/07/21/injury-rules-everton-s-mikel-arteta-out-of-dc-united-friendly-100252-29099143/
Steve Pugh
8   Posted 22/07/2011 at 08:02:19

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Steven #6, good point. People on here moan at players toeing the party line or keeping quiet, but when a player says they may have to leave to win trophies or that Everton aren't ambitious enough then they are slated for being disloyal. Can't have it both ways guys.
John de Frece
9   Posted 22/07/2011 at 07:52:54

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Nothing very new here

I just can't figure out Kenwright. Surely he must know about the increasing rebellion in the fans ranks. Does he care? After all, if your customers are utterly sick of the product don't you think the owner would make some sort of effort to appease them?

In the meantime, the Shite ? a club not so long ago in dire financial straits ? have suddenly forked out £50 million for new players! How? Where?

I well remember as a kid how abysmally shite we were for the whole of the 1950s. We didn't have a penny then either. It took John Moores to come along and give us loans which enabled us to take a step up.

Since then, let's be honest: nobody has given us a farthing ? except of course the fans... and this is why I don't get Kenwright. Why the fuck are you alienating us? We are your only real source of income apart from the telly. Are we worth so little in your eyes?

After all, if we get fed up, we won't even both indoctrinating our kids anymore! (The cute slogan of "Born not Manufactured" is bollocks because WE give them birth and drag them along to GP until they are so brainwashed they don't have a choice!)

I know this is all a bit disjointed but I am so utterly fed up; at this rate, I give us just a few more years before relegation.

Alan Williams
10   Posted 22/07/2011 at 08:02:27

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No problems with what is above and nice to see no personal abuse to Bill (Gavin, take note) but how can we make investment without cash or revenue to back it up? We are not Greece! It's not easy at all to solve but I agree, Kings Dock was our chance, and BK knows that.... and in hindsight he would have done something different but that is gone.

We must also be careful when selling ? look at Blackburn and QPR, it's not always what you think!! We all want better, that is agreed, but sometimes you just don't get what you want. COYB

Richard Dodd
11   Posted 22/07/2011 at 08:55:03

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Another one longing for a takeover! The reality is that most of the clubs in the top two divisions have had a change of ownership in this millennium ? and all but a handful are below us in the performance table. Indeed, many of their `saviours` have seen their clubs fall through the system: Leeds, Nottm Forest, Coventry, Portsmouth et al.

I hate us having no cash for signings, an out-of-date stadium and a pathetic PR department BUT I wouldn`t swop `Our Bill` for any of the cowboys who now dominate `owners board` at most clubs.

I guess we would have enjoyed the ride a super sheikh or Russian oligarch MIGHT have brought us but there`s precious few of them about and, as for the rest, we`ve had a great escape.

Kunal Desai
12   Posted 22/07/2011 at 10:29:37

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Ian - Nailed on mate! Agree 100%. As for dogleish, yes he's a winner pre PL days. Won the title with Blackburn with Walkers millions. Nothing thereafter. Await a dodgy spell with the shite this season then we'll see, probably crack up and resign.
Phil Martin
13   Posted 22/07/2011 at 11:34:15

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Richard,

Don't you see our position (7th best as of last season) is of little consequence of our board? Moyes and the players have got us there. Maybe if our wonderful owners hadn't spunked so much money on conning the fans into a giant retail park scam. Or perhaps actually saught to dilute their own holding slightly to encourage fresh investment. Moyes might have had 2-3 extra players by now. And then we'd be really looking forward to the new season.

Instead we're sat here listening to you in your tin hat spouting nonesense.

Ian McPherson
14   Posted 22/07/2011 at 11:43:57

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Agree with the article, but just more of the frustration being vented on this website. I too have being reading TW over last few weeks and keeping an eye out in case someone signs for us, a rumour will do at this stage!

This season ahead is the first time as a Toffee I am genuinely worried for us. With no investment in the team, fan morale at an all time low, having to drink fucking Chang at home games, the list is endless. There are about 12 players in our squad I would trust playing in a Everton first team shirt.

Moyes pissed me off on a lot of decisions in games last year, will he change for this season his beliefs? I think not. We need Moyes more than he needs us. Not a good place to be in as a Toffee.
Alan Williams
15   Posted 22/07/2011 at 13:10:20

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Phil @12, nonsense is from you!! Nothing in your post actually makes any sense at all, you live in a dream world when it comes to EFC, get real.

85 pence in every pound goes to the playing side of the business so if they finish 7th then the people who make that decision should get credit too! People want to run EFC with hindsight and no liability to P&L, quality of the brand and then customer?s ability to pay (you and me).

In today?s game, we are 7th; we are no longer drinking at the top table. Times have changed and this happened a long time before BK arrived. The current situation is not great and the board have made mistakes, this is agreed, and new owners are needed; the problem is nobody wants us.

So, until the right person comes along, then I and many more fans are content for BK to stay in charge. People must also realise that we are still paying transfer fees over the term of the contract so we are still advancing money for the overpaid players on the field; basically we spend more than we generate ? it's very simple when you look at it. COYB

Gavin Ramejkis
16   Posted 22/07/2011 at 15:20:13

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Alan, you've carefully sidestepped the underlying financial calamity that the board has created. As a business, the club is devoid of ideas besides asset utilisation, even the current CEO has agreed that this is unsustainable, not this year but a few seasons ago, yet nothing has changed. The boad have failed en masse to perform their duties to the business, pretty much creating a void which appears to have no exit other than continual decline. The trouble with a decline is that in business terms these gradually increase in pace.

You are fully entitled to your own views but please don't attempt to claim the current record debts and lack of even a short term strategy lie anywhere other than right at the foot of BK and his board. He has been in control of the club for over a decade, the fiscal state of the club had never been so perlious despite previous incumbents errors and poor management. The difference now is the Chairman has basically admitted he can't take the club any further (2004 its now 2011), his CEO had to admit on oath his Chairman and board have completely refused to spend a single penny of their own money on the club to it's benefit or to dilute their shareholdings to it's benefit and most cynically that the club wasn't for sale prior to DK.

All in all Alan, that pretty much sums up the board to a tee, a growing discontent is there to see.
Phil Martin
17   Posted 22/07/2011 at 17:39:13

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Alan Williams,

Thanks for ignoring any of my statement which were based on FACT. and spouting more Dodd-esque tripe.

Do you disagree that Kirkby was almost a disaster?
Or that this abysmal idea cost the club £Ms?

Do you honestly believe in the entire 11 years of BK's reign not one single investor (of any worth) has been interested in EFC?

Alan, no-one believes we dine with the elite any more, but some of us (more clued up) want better than to dine with the likes of Norwich or Swansea.
Alan Williams
18   Posted 22/07/2011 at 18:14:29

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Phil, Norwich or Swansea ? how do we compare with them!!! I?m sorry but again you fail at every point to mention any positives.

DK project wasn?t a disaster, the location was and that was always the issue from day one. Gavin, I and all of my friends still back BK (7 STH) we aren?t stupid, we hold excellent jobs some of us running businesses double the size of EFC. Yes, he has made mistakes, KD is the worst by far, but believe me we could easily be in a far worse position than we currently are, and we can all give at least 10+ other teams that have slipped out of the Premier Leagure when we haven?t.

In his 10 years, we have got better in league position... FACT. Yes, debt has increased and assets have gone but they haven?t gone in the Board's pockets, the money has gone into players pockets ? nobody else.

Gavin, since when does the majority shareholder in a business have to pass over millions of pounds of his own money with no return? EFC is a business ? not a charity or co-operative.

I don?t agree with the current ST prices, I think they are far too low and far too many concessions; unless we get revenue in, we can?t compete... yet we didn?t even pass on the VAT increase to the fans! Great for us fans but bad business... sometimes people just don?t know how lucky they are until it's all gone.

Look at the great takeover at Blackburn, do you really want EFC in that position or for us stay as we are, living to our means? Doddy makes a lot of common sense statements; sadly some people just chose to let the passion for our great club mist over the reality of our situation.

I can separate my passion from me as a fan and Everton as a business, I want us to be top dogs not 7th but 1st... but I?m also a realist and I accept our situation, I don?t like it ? I just accept it. COYB

Phil Martin
19   Posted 22/07/2011 at 20:56:24

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Alan, rollover and let Bill tickle your tummy.

The fact we can't compete with the likes of Stoke and Wolves puts us at the same table (transfer wise) with the smallest clubs in the Premier League.

Ask why clubs like Stoke and Wolves can pay £8M for a player, while we can't afford even the wages.

You may class this situation as fine financial management. But a lot of independent thinkers expect better. Yes we can't compete with the top 4 but the board can fuck off if they want me to believe in 11 years no-one has even had a sniff at EFC. Wake up!

Alan Williams
20   Posted 22/07/2011 at 21:15:36

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Ok Phil, you compare EFC with Norwich, Swansea, Stoke and Wolves, I ask why?

Is it because they have so far spent more than us? It can't be the quality of current squads can it? Even you cant be that daft, can you? If you really think these clubs are better off than us, then you seriously need to take off your blinkers as we all know they aren't... simple true fact.

I agree, we need to change ownership, but it has to be for the benefit of the club and until that day, a lot of us are content with BK sticking around. Look at the work we do at youth level, work in the community and many others... all we are missing is very serious investment; other than that, we have a very special and unique club that is simply the best in our hearts.

I support Everton not BK, that will never change. I just understand it's not as easy as people think running a business this size that pays its employees more than its management. COYB

Gavin Ramejkis
21   Posted 22/07/2011 at 22:33:07

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Alan, you and your chums claim to hold some level of business acumen but have still sidestepped their responsibilities as Directors, ask your friends about the Companies Act, I've held my own business for over a decade and I find it staggering the nonsense the board actually allude to at Everton, what exactly have they provided to Everton as a business?

I'll ask you to provide a simple bullet point list of positives, really easy ones Alan:

Investment - they are reportedly seeking in excess of £120m for the club, how can they justify that having not spent a single penny of their own money

Other operating expenses which include directors expenses has risen from £1.2m to over £23m in the time BK has been Chairman, thats a very large proportion of the clubs annual income right there, would you or your friends genuinely think that's perfectly normal or acceptable?

Would any of your friends agree that the removal of AGMs and the carte blanche change to the articles of association basically sticking their fingers up to shareholders is the right way to run a company and if so, what company have they done it to themselves?

You quote the ST prices as being too low, but you can't have your cake and eat it claiming BK is doing a great job Alan, the stadium hasn't had any investment, it had frozen pipes this winter for the first time in my living memory and I've turned forty yet you think they should stiff the ST holders with price increases for a crumbling stadium with fuck all spent on it?

Explain how we are so lucky Alan, I'd love to see this bullet point list but I'd suggest donning a tin hat as you'll get a host of responses as we've heard claims of BK's achievements before and I for one can't think of any besides the now pointless he appointed DM (which was Walter Smith's suggestion not his own) or his pathetic "boys pen" true blue guff as some sort of achievement.
Brian Waring
22   Posted 23/07/2011 at 09:50:43

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Gavin all that ' Boys pen' ' True blue '
' He's one of us ' shite, is the reason why we still have lads backing him.

It was mentioned the other day, that if he was a foreigner, he would have been hung, drawn and qautered by now.



Peter Johnson was hounded out for less.
Dave Brooks
23   Posted 23/07/2011 at 12:00:25

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Phil (#19) -
To answer your rhetorical question about Stoke, I imagine you'd have to look at both clubs a little more closely.

It's not the answer, but Stoke appear to have a payroll less than two-thirds the size of Everton's (as is Wolves').

Which would seem to, in part, support the previous posters who say that wages is part of the problem.
Dave Brooks
24   Posted 23/07/2011 at 12:53:32

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And Wolves appear to have one of the best wages to turnover ratios around (which might be normal for a recently promoted club).
Gavin Ramejkis
25   Posted 23/07/2011 at 14:24:37

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Great sense Brian and the least important thing as shown of the last 12 or so years is that his supposed colours have been misused. I'd rather have a businessman or woman who know how to actually run one.

The catalogue of poor decisions and missed opportunities on BK's clock are shameful and it's more shameful to garner support using colours as a shield, he created a massive split in the fans themselves over DK a real divide and conquer move.

The voice of his supporters and pro arguments have dramatically fallen, even the fairly obvious club plants posting on here. If anyone wants to post an article in support of BK and any mitigation or evidence they have I'd be more than interested to read it but I very much doubt it'll appear or hold any water.
Alan Williams
26   Posted 24/07/2011 at 13:14:42

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The company EFC in real terms is only worth what somebody is prepared to offer, it's all about goodwill ? and just how much that means I'm not sure... but in business terms I would value us around £50 million all-in ? the rest is between the seller and buyer.

Company law changed recently that means they no longer need to have public AGMs and EFC, like many hundreds of businesses, acted upon this ruling, they just exercised their right to do so and nothing wrong in law with that.

Gavin, EFC is a business, not a co-operative, and they don't have to explain themselves in detail to you and I; we as fans want everything and I'm afraid we just can't have it. I have stated I'm content with the current board and read in to that I don't agree with everything they do and season ticket prices is one of them. My ticket is in the main stand and my son is 7 years old, I would say a premium spot yet they are pushing me to pay around £300 for a child when they can get £700 plus on the walk-up market ? which is good for me but bad business selling your top seats for a such a reduction. If we want to compete at the top then we must act like top clubs and charge accordingly.

In simple terms, we get what we pay for ? just look at the season ticket prices of the teams we want to compete with, red shite main stand 40% higher than our!! London clubs double the price and more. This simple fact means we can't compete, and BK as a fan makes the wrong decision on this one but he thinks he is doing it for the correct reasons.

Your request for examples of positives ? just look at teams like Leeds, Portsmouth, Leicester, Middlesbrough, Ipswich, Birmingham, Palace, Sheffield Wednesday and United and Southampton plus many many more! COYB

Tom Hughes
27   Posted 25/07/2011 at 07:19:02

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Alan, I think you are confusing your contentment with Moyes's performance in making the most of what he can with meagre resources, to the board's complete ineptitude in providing those resources. The whole reason this club isn't in the position of some you mention is Moyes. He has achieved this despite the board and not because of it....

The tiny nett spend tells you everything you need to know about their contribution to that relative success. Without him, we would probably be down amongst the deadbeats. With a more effective board, we could've been in the top 4 and on the real gravy train for several of the past few seasons.

As regards season ticket pricing, there are several clubs who are cheaper than us, and few are in as deprived an area. While there is no real surplus demand for tickets, they have to price competitively, and the dad & lad combined ticket prices are a bit of an exception to the rule, and should be as flexible as possible as they represent a good total spend, and of course it's an eye on the future.

The reason season tickets have always been cheaper than walk-up totals is that the club would rather be assured of a full season's support... at the end of the day, the mainstand is regularly not filled in any case, so why not try to entice the dad who doesn't fancy sitting in the enclosure?

Comparing with Liverpool is futile too, as their capacity is only marginally bigger than ours and yet their fanbase is multiples of EFC's. They could probably charge more and still fill their place easily.

While practically ALL other clubs have addressed all or part of their stadium issues, this lot presided over the biggest lost opportunity to resolve them that they will ever get. Then, to add to that catastrophic failure, they were all for being led down the Kirkby trail at the behest of others, to satisfy everyone else's ambitions but the club's. It really isn't a valid argument to say this board have done well because at least we're not like Leicester or any other nothing club!

Alan Williams
28   Posted 25/07/2011 at 07:54:35

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Hi Tom, I?m not confusing them both because I?m looking at EFC as a business and if a business has good managers then the Directors take credit too.

I have no extreme argument against what you say but there are two sides to your answer. Liverpool is in walking distance from us, same demographic as regarding fan wealth (apart from walk-ups) and my slant is everybody wants us to complete with the top 4/6, and you mention that, yourself but, unless we as a business break the conundrum of spending more than we generate, then that cycle will never be broken and ST is just one part of it.

BK isn?t going to win any business awards but when you run a business like EFC and you don?t have complete control (he has 27%) and very low EBITA, then you have to take risks and go cap in hand to third parties ? and that is where we as a club have made most of our mistakes, KD being the worst. I?m not against the Kirkby model of having the council and a retailer as a sponsor ? it was the location that broke the back and if it was in the middle of Walton Park it would have progressed.

We have debt, not great... but the debt we have is sustainable as long as we don?t continue spending every year ? and that?s just where we are at present. Moyes wanted to keep his big players so the board made the decision to break the wage cap and pay big to our main players and that is where all the extra revenue has gone: in the pockets of Arteta & Co.

BK and the board have made mistakes for sure but they haven?t bankrupted us either chasing the dream which many clubs have. That?s the risk/leap we take; all things considered, I?m content with the fact we are still in a position to move forward after 12 years of BK... not great but we still have reasons to be optimistic as opposed to total pessimism. That?s why we need not just any new owner but the correct one... but we as fans must realise that if we get what we want we will have to contribute both by loyalty and cash! COYB

Tom Hughes
29   Posted 28/07/2011 at 07:17:37

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Alan,
I'd like to respond to a few points:

"I?m not confusing them both because I?m looking at EFC as a business and if a business has good managers then the Directors take credit too."

I believe any credit would be entirely undeserved.... put it this way, who would you rather lose, DM or BK? Who has added the greatest value? Meanwhile the business side is by the club's own admission.... completely unsustainable. Everything has been sold there's nothing left to hock..... and we now can't compete with ANY premier league club for the signature of ANY new player.... even freebies it would seem.

"Liverpool is in walking distance from us, same demographic as regarding fan wealth (apart from walk-ups)"

The demographic maybe similar for the local LFC fans, but the point is their fanbase is now several times bigger than ours (I'm sure I read somewhere that EFC have a fanbase of approx 800k worldwide, whereas they have nearly 4million in the uk alone). Indeed that's why they can charge what they charge and why they are looking for 60-73k new seats whereas we're more likely to be in the 45-50k range.

"I?m not against the Kirkby model of having the council and a retailer as a sponsor ? it was the location that broke the back and if it was in the middle of Walton Park it would have progressed."

KEIOC demonstrated that the Kirkby retail-led model had no legs right from the start.... both in terms of the unsubstantiated cross-funding, and the viability of meeting planning legislation, which meant any significant retail development could not possibly happen. At no point did the club appear to grasp the futility of this plan, let alone the other significant defficiencies of a stadium with miniscule public transport provision. .

"all things considered, I?m content with the fact we are still in a position to move forward after 12 years of BK..."

I'm not sure how we can move forward when the coffers are now empty, and we can no longer add quality without losing some first. I'm also not sure how we can move forward when the club seem to be completely incapable of delivering ANY stadium development (even ones supposedly free). It really isn't about being a pessimist or an optimist.... it's about looking at what's been achieved on and off the pitch, and the serious missed opportunities, and fundamentally flawed decisions of this board. They've been listed numerous times, and I'm yet to see any comparable list to their credit.

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