Season 2011-12
The Mail Bag

The lack of good football at Goodison Park.

 34 Comments: First  |  Last

I have seen some excellent football played under David Moyes. Not often... but sometimes. It seems I have been unfortunate in the games I have attended because they have been, in the main, utterly appalling. The main exponent of thumping the ball aimlessly up the pitch is not Jagielka, clueless as he is, but Tim Howard.

Back pass to Howard and a fucking useless punt to no-one. Andy Johnson was destroyed by this shite. Surely this is down to Moyes?

I actually don't entirely blame Neville, Hibbert, Howard and Jagielka for what appears to be their inability to find a pass. Our problem is the lack of movement in midfield. Hoofball is the result.

When we have played scintillating football under Moyes ? and we have ? it occurs when confidence is high and the midfielders are screaming for the ball. When confidence is low, they don't want to know and Neville and Co have no option but the aimless hoof.

Money has no influence on this ? it is entirely down to the coach. If he is calling for them to play it short and they ignore him, then get them out of the side.

If Arsenal increase their offer for Jagielka it would be insanity not to accept it. He is a journeyman who has been shown up at international level.

The mentality of our coach is safety first. Kenwright is not the only problem at the club.
Andy Crooks, Belfast     Posted 23/07/2011 at 16:03:52

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Roy Rennison
1   Posted 23/07/2011 at 17:34:28

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Jags a journeyman?????? How many teams has he played for again?
Karl Masters
2   Posted 23/07/2011 at 18:14:13

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Another problem is fans like you with unrealistic expectations.

I am not advocating defensibve football, but you work with what you have as a Coach. Unless you have a top notch squad, which we don't and cannot begin to afford, you have to play to the strengths of the players you do have.

Football will always be a results driven business. Would you rather have consistent finishes
Eric Myles
3   Posted 23/07/2011 at 18:13:35

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"When we have played scintillating football under Moyes ? and we have ? it occurs when confidence is high and the midfielders are screaming for the ball. When confidence is low, they don't want to know and Neville and Co have no option but the aimless hoof. "

So your saying that Moyes deliberatlly tells them to hoof the ball if don't feel up to playing a midfield pass?
Karl Masters
4   Posted 23/07/2011 at 18:17:06

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Another problem is fans like you with unrealistic expectations.

I am not advocating defensibve football, but you work with what you have as a Coach. Unless you have a top notch squad, which we don't and cannot begin to afford, you have to play to the strengths of the players you do have.

Football will always be a results driven business. Would you rather have consistent finishes from 4th to 8th with varying degrees of entertainment ( and there have been matches we have dazzled in ) or would you rather adopt an approach like Blackpool, West Brom under Mowbray or Arsenal under Wenger and get relegated when you could have stayed up or win nothing for years when you should be.

I understand your frustrations Andy, but with money dominating everything there really has to be some realism as well.,
Brendan O'Doherty
5   Posted 23/07/2011 at 18:28:40

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Stuck record. Over to you Dave Wilson (if you can be bothered after the thread the other day).

Nelly Verdonghan
6   Posted 23/07/2011 at 18:30:18

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Don't let Dave Wilson read this...he seems to think that Howard raely punts the ball long...

Andy I agree with you entirely mate. This current squad could, should & probably WOULD win more game if Moyes his saftey first mentality and went for it; however, if you dare criticise his style of play (...or lack of it), you get labelled a Red Shite.

I agree that lack of finance is not to blame for the tactics employed by the manager.... 4-5-1 (especially at home..) v the likes of Stoke, Wigan, West Brom, Wolves etc is entirely the work of the manager. If the players continually ignore his instructions then he should leave them out of the team.

IMO Moyes has done a fine job getting us from where we were to where we are... but he will take us no further whilst he continues to employ his current game plan... and we certainly WILL NOT win a trophy.
Luke Dunn
7   Posted 23/07/2011 at 19:13:10

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99% of 'keepers hoof the ball up the park, so I can't see the point there for blaming Howard. Jags is by far the worse culprit; personally I can't believe how a great footballing side like the Arse would want such a hoofball merchant. I don't think their offer for him is serious. He has been blatantly exposed at international level and any offer for him should be accepted.

Heitinga is miles better and as been taught from an early age via the Ajax Academy how to build up the play from the back. If you want to see good football then you need to field passers ? not hoofers.
Brian Waring
8   Posted 23/07/2011 at 19:31:36

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All the great managers will change tactics, formation etc, depending on who they are playing. Unfortunately for us, Moyes is limited tactically, and his first priority is not to get beat, anything after that is a bonus.
Jack Farrington
9   Posted 23/07/2011 at 19:32:33

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Next post please...
Steve Pugh
10   Posted 23/07/2011 at 19:32:24

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I agree, if players aren't performing properly drop 'em. When Screech, Arteta, Cahill, Osman and Rodders are underperforming Moyes can replace them with Bily, Gueye... hmm 3 more top flight Everton mifielders, I'm struggling.

I would say Coleman, but then I'd be accused of playing people out of position. Same with Johnny H (after all he's a centre half) and Nev.

It really is unfair to blame Moyes for not dropping every player that underperforms when he doesn't have the backup squad. This is the reason that Everton cannot compete and never will until we have strength in depth.
Simon Harris
11   Posted 23/07/2011 at 19:44:16

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Andy, so are you advocating a change of manager or just unhappy with Moyes's tactics?

If it's the latter then I have some empathy - but with the exception of Barcelona don't all fans bemoan the tactics employed by their managers from time to time.

Even Arsenal fans have been calling for Sarsons Vinegar to adopt a more 'physical' approach. As whilst pretty football is marvelous to watch, some just want them to win, even if that means winning ugly at times.

Moyes can frustrate, and god knows I despair at him bringing everyone back for corners, but with the resources at his disposal he's worked miracles in building and maintaining a squad that is up there nearly every year.

I can't think of many others that can rival his achievements, and I hope he gets his chance to work with a top 6 budget one day....with Everton!
John Crook
12   Posted 23/07/2011 at 21:56:27

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Jagielka is one of the best centre backs in the country without a doubt. So what if he 'hoof balls' every now and then? His primary objective is to defend and clear any danger. In a one-on-one situation, there is no-one better or more reliable defensively. He shouldn't be sold unless it's for a ridiculous amount and I mean above 20 million.

It seems Cappello rates him as England's third best (at least)... I wouldn't say Terry and Ferdinand are streets ahead of Jagielka but obviously the regular European games those two play always give them the edge.

Guy Hastings
13   Posted 23/07/2011 at 22:04:10

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Have to agree with Andy over AJ. I lived a a few hundred yards from Selhurst and saw a lot of him at the Palace. He was an absolute joy to watch. All this bollocks about being a diver based on the penalties won was just that ? bollocks. If defenders couldn't handle him they'd bring him down. Their fault, not his. I was utterly chuffed when he signed for us; just the player we wanted. I'm a fan of Moyes but in AJ's case he got it very very wrong.
Karl Meighan
14   Posted 24/07/2011 at 00:08:55

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Moyes team may not play the best football but they mix it up well and in the main play to there strengths. Ruined Andy Johnson? Ive never seen a striker run down blind alleys and caldisacks more in my life and thats apart from the fact he couldn't finish his dinner. He works hard Johnson and covers a lot of of ground but how many has he slotted at Fulham? Not fuckin many and dont say Fulham just hoof it. Take off his penalties at clubs and his record is average at best. Johnsons work rate and the 2 he got against the RS won the fans over it certainly wasn't a prolific goal scoring record.

As for Jageilka that game against Spain he played well apart from the error that led to the goal in a game were England were taught a lesson in pass and move football.

The key is winning football, yes it would be great if we won and played great every game but its not realistic. I would take playing average and winning over playing well and losing every day of the week plus not playing well and winning games is the sign of a good side. I dont think its possible to have a manager who i would agree with on every decision as you can always improve in football and its a game of opinions.
Karl Meighan
15   Posted 24/07/2011 at 00:29:15

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Luke @7 Heitinga may of been taught how to play at Ajax but just not to defend? There is a lot more to defending than passing a ball, reading the game and desire and determination cannot be taught by anyone including Ajax and Barcelona. Heitinga is not a poor defender but if a choice between the 2 had to be made its Jageilka every time for me, plus Heitinga is a fuckin liability kicking people and giving freekicks away for nothing when there is no danger, he's just proved that in the States how braindead he is.
Brendan O'Doherty
16   Posted 24/07/2011 at 02:46:01

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Some good football tonight.

Oh wait, it wasn't at Goodison Park.

Back to Andy's weekly (sometimes daily during the season?) Moyesbash.
Stephen Leary
17   Posted 24/07/2011 at 04:36:51

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What the fuck are you on about Andy? Jags a journeyman? He has played for Sheff Utd and us that is it, and he is by far our best defender. I'd rather sell the "thinks he is brilliant" Heitinga or Distin than Jags anyday.

I hate the shite posted on here about him lumping it forward; yeah, ok, he does it sometimes, but there is a lot of the time he plays it right or left to Pip or Baines, passing it from the back. I am sick of some people on here slagging our better performers off ? it's the same with Osman who, in my opinion, playing through the middle, is our best central midfielder: he is an underrated class little player.

Whilst Jags is our best defender, I will agree with some of the things said about Moyes; a lot of the time he is so negative it's unreal. We need Kenwright out and a new board in with fresh ideas. COYB!!! ps: Barkley looks fucking class. Wilshere ? who are ya?!!
Andy McNabb
18   Posted 24/07/2011 at 04:50:49

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Funny the things people say/write.

"Jags is a journeyman..." I think we should all take a deep breath before we start to type.

That statement is quite simply not true.
Dave Wilson
19   Posted 24/07/2011 at 06:25:07

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Oh Dear Andy

I know you spent most of last season saying work and the cost prevent you getting across as often as you would like and for that, you have my sympathy`s, but when exactly was the last time you got to Goodison ?

Johnson left years ago! you seem to be stuck in some kind of time warp. Our style of play has changed !

Tough tackiling midfield players like Carsley have been replaced by footballers. Arteta, Fellaini, Rodwell or whoever plays in that deep lying role cant defend - same position different function - They are there to build, to take the ball from ball playing defenders like Baines or Distin and yes even Hibbert has "shortened it up", but by changing style, the Ginger fella has encountered a new problems. we are too slow and predictable.

You simply cant play sideways hoofball - had this debate with EJ the other day - the mindless boot has been replaced by, if anything, by too much thought. Instinct and creation is what is missing from Moyes`s current Everton team.

As for Jagielka, I`ve made no secret of the fact that I think we should have taken Wenger`s reported 15m offer last season, I hate hoofball, but Jags is one of the best defenders in the game on his day, even I would`nt despute that. Moyes would be hammered if he simply left him on the bench

Nelly

Nice try, but I aint avin it, A forward can always make a goalkeeper kick it and Howard is no different . . but you insisted he always aimlessly booted it "out of his hands", he doesnt. he will always kick from the floor when given a choice and he will always aim for somebody.
Occasionally a Goalie will try to launch quick counter attack, the fella across the park loves to do it, but Howard and other top keepers tend to go fo accuracy and trajectory.

Potato patata Nelly
Paul Gladwell
20   Posted 24/07/2011 at 08:49:28

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I actually thought we tried to play too much football last season with no end product, I don't know where you saw this none stop hoofball.
Dave Wilson
21   Posted 24/07/2011 at 09:10:00

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Brendan #17

Spare a thought for Andy`s poor missus ? He probably goes to bed moaning about Moyes and wakes up still moaning about him .

I bet she would happily carry Moyes`s bags out of GP.

Its the only way she`s ever gonna get any piece
Dave Wilson
22   Posted 24/07/2011 at 09:34:33

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or even Peace
Karl Meighan
23   Posted 24/07/2011 at 10:28:04

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As for Howard just hoofing it out of hand? Ime quite sure Howard looks to throw or roll it out as much as possible as he cannot kick a ball very well and looks absolute shite when trying to use his feet and very uncomfortable. Its a good job he is a keeper as he would of struggled in amateuer football as a outfield player.
Luke Dunn
24   Posted 24/07/2011 at 10:39:39

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John (#12), sorry just because the moron in charge of the England team rates him does not mean he is world class. This is the guy that took Hesky to the World Cup, and left Darren Bent at home in a season where he banged in 20+ goals. The same guy also left Bainesy out.
Brian Waring
25   Posted 24/07/2011 at 10:52:20

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John (#12) " His primary objective is to defend and clear any danger "

Its funny, the same could be said of Hibbert ( IMO, he's just as good a defender as Jags ) but the lad gets slaughtered on here.
Karl Masters
26   Posted 24/07/2011 at 12:53:37

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At times last season a quick hoof down the pitch might have set up a quick attack with the other team out of position.

We were held at home by teams who came to park the bus as they say, Wolves, West Ham, Wigan, Birmingham, 4 of the bottom 5 and our inability to break them down cost us 8 points and Europe as a result.

In the past, our results usually went to form, but last season we had more success against the top teams who played a more open game. Solve how to beat the lower teams and we could be cooking on gas.

In a way that's a better problem to have than wondering how to overcome the best teams and grounds for a bit of cautious optimism.
Brian Waring
27   Posted 24/07/2011 at 17:53:00

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Karl (#27) ? I don't remember West Ham coming to Goodison and parking the bus. For the majority of the game they were the better team, and a last minute Fellaini equaliser got us the draw.
Karl Masters
28   Posted 24/07/2011 at 19:20:46

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OK Brian, in their case let's describe it as our failure to overcome a poor team below us in the table who only 3 weeks before had not mustered a single shot on target on our goal during the 1-1 draw at Upton Park (Hibbert scored their goal you may recall).

We can substitute the home result against Bolton if you like. The point is that we did very poorly against the lower teams, primarliy because we could not break them down.

That may be partly down to tactics, but the lack of creative options in our squad is because we don't have Modric money to throw around. Moyes has to work with what he has and with Pienaar gone, Arteta out of form much of the time, it was actually the much criticised Osman who provided the spark ,especially in the second half of he season.

Gueye may be another option this coming season, but the pace of N'Zogbia for example would be very useful.
Tom Bowers
29   Posted 24/07/2011 at 19:12:09

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We have to face facts. Everton if nothing else are running a viable business; although they cannot compete with the rich clubs, they will have survived comfortably albeit without having much success. The consequence of this is a workmanlike squad with a manager who is tailor-made for the job in hand.

Nothing will change this season and our results will be similar as we can expect the usual teams to dominate the top six... although the Redshite will probably run the others a lot closer now that they have spent the millions.

I expect QPR to go back down along with Blackburn and Wolves.

Dave Wilson
30   Posted 24/07/2011 at 21:37:07

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Brian #28 of course you don't, but you are allowed to talk about all the other games... you know, the ones we dominated. But you chose to forget ? list available on request

Just giving the facts...
Andy Crooks
31   Posted 25/07/2011 at 00:10:05

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Dave, my wife finds my obsession with football utterly ludicrous. My obsession with Everton she finds ludicrous and sad. My obsession with Moyes she finds ludicrous, sad and worrying.

She has, however, come up with a solution which all Evertonians should consider. I quote: "If all this annoys you so much, why don't you just support another club. Manchester United are good,aren't they? Didn't you used to like Wayne Rooney?"

Simple really... Why didn't I think of it?

Eric Myles
32   Posted 25/07/2011 at 02:59:22

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Andy #32, if my missus said that I'd pack her bags and show her the door!!

Back to topic, Howard has to hoof the ball 'cos he's not allowed to pick up a back pass.
Tony J Williams
33   Posted 25/07/2011 at 13:47:58

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Amen Brian No 26
Brian Waring
34   Posted 25/07/2011 at 17:50:59

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Dave, you must be a miserable sod!

Karl included West Ham as one of those teams that came and ' Parked the bus ' I pointed out that they never.
Whats wrong with that?

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