Season 2011-12
The Mail Bag

Landon Donovan

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Just back from the MLS final. (It pissed down with rain, which I know is not a big deal in Liverpool, but it is in LA.) It wasn't much of a game, but Landon scored the only goal. He scored with the type of movement and finish we have not seen at Everton for a while. I still think that he can do a job for us, and I hope the next time I see him scoring he will be wearing a blue shirt.
Gerry Morrison, Los Angeles     Posted 21/11/2011 at 06:46:28

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Michael Brien
1   Posted 21/11/2011 at 07:30:18

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He did well during his loan period - we know what he can do; if there is an opportunity to sign him either on loan or on a permanent deal( preferably the latter) then I would think it would be a very good move.
Eugene Ruane
2   Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:14:21

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A more than decent player with (and there's not many) a good football brain, plus that in-built American GOT to win mentality. Would love to see him back.
Jon Ferguson
3   Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:17:38

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I would definitely have Landon back on loan, but I don?t think he is the messiah that some on this site believe him to be. He is 29 ? 30ish, wouldn?t come especially cheap and we need to be signing younger players. I don?t mind getting him in on loan as long as that does not eat into any of the money we?ve been promised for transfers.
Simon Atkins
4   Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:27:10

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I would have him back in a heartbeat...

Although saying that, I would have any new player in a heartbeat right now!
Kunal Desai
5   Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:29:26

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Rumour has it he'll be back at Everton is January. A deal similar to his last one.
Stephen Kenny
6   Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:46:49

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A waste of time to get him back on a short term loan.

With the start we've had were not going to be challenging for Europe and were usually abysmal in the cups, so whats the point?

He's only blocking a chance for any one of Gueye, Vellios, Forshaw or Coleman.

If he's permanent I'd be happy because he's a good player with pace and the intelligence to use it, otherwise we may as well spend a half a season developing a player to play for the future.
Sam Hoare
7   Posted 21/11/2011 at 09:48:31

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Stephen may have a good point. He's definitely a useful player but given how little we may have to fight for this season come January is there much point in a loan which would essentially block opportunities for other youngsters?

Be happy to see him come as ultimately the more better players here, for however long, the better. Would be happier though to see Barkley, Gueye or Vellios really flourish with a run in the team.

Don't think we can afford to spend the £6m minimum on a 29 year old for permanent move.
Dick Fearon
8   Posted 21/11/2011 at 10:34:25

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Gerry, thanks for your piece about the Galaxy win. I watched Beckham and Keene talking about it on BBC football. Neither of them said anything about Landon's contribution let alone that he scored scored the only goal.
Gary Creaney
9   Posted 21/11/2011 at 11:04:41

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Stephen Kenny, your logic is fairly reasonable but, given that a higher league position translates into more money, then we really should be aiming for a high as we can; if 3 months of Landon Donavon helps our cause in that respect, then we should take it.
Jeremy Benson
10   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:04:22

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Jon @ 3 is spot on.

We've dallied so much over Landon that he's now knocking on 30 (in March).

With the financial situation we are in, it would be foolish to spend big money on older players. You have to cut your cloth accordingly, and we need to be buying players who either retain, or increase, their value over the term of their contract.
Daniel A Johnson
11   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:10:28

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I'd rather we signed Drenthe, he's quicker and younger.

Plus, if he plays regularly, he's only going to get better.
Danny Broderick
12   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:11:02

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Like someone else said, with £750,000 per league placing, if he comes over and helps us finish 3 or 4 places higher in the league, then it will have all been worthwhile.
Tony J Williams
13   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:28:40

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Jeremy, I wouldn't say that we had dallied, as so much as we couldn't afford to buy him.

If he helps the team, why not? But who will he replace? I can't see him taking over from Coleman, unless Moyes moves him back to right back but his defending isn't there yet.

Let's not forget, Moyes played Anichebe in front of Donovan on a few occasions...
Chris Fisher
14   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:40:19

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He will come back in January on loan, just the same as last time, and will be a great signing for us, but we will still need a few more good signings on top of that.
Roberto Birquet
15   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:38:49

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Jeremy Benson:
"With the financial situation we are in, it would be foolish to spend big money on older players."
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I believe he would potentially cost less than £4m as he is going into the final two years of his deal.

And like many others commenting, I'd snap him up on a 3½-year deal. Yes the £4m would go, but we know what he can do for us (not so much a punt like Bily), and that he can ft in immediately. We have youth in the squad, so don't see his acquisition as making us an old squad overall.

The positives easily outweigh the negatives for me. I'd sell Bily to finance it. And God, I hope we have the Arteta money for a fit striker.
Roberto Birquet
16   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:45:03

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"I believe he would potentially cost less than £4m as he is going into the final two years of his deal."
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Explanation......
The word is that once you're into the final two years, you can buy out the contract in the US. So it has been reported.
Ben Jones
17   Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:48:34

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@8

To be fair Dick, I saw Beckham do a press conference and all he did was praise Landon.

I think we do need him. I think the thinking of Stephen and Sam is fair enough, but we are by no means guaranteed we are going to stay up, we need as many quality players as possible.

Maybe could sell Billy and buy him instead? I would have thought they would be both be similar values, given Donovan's age. Even though Billy didnt do that great for us, I can see a lot of clubs in Russia paying a lot of money for him.
Jeremy Benson
18   Posted 21/11/2011 at 13:31:26

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Roberto, as much as I like landon, and agree that £4 million would be a good deal, you're not going to see any of that money back. He'd play out his 3 years, and at 33 would move on for no value.

So Roberto, I don't think you are understanding my point - Everton simply cannot afford to lose £4 million on a player. Any player, no matter how good they are, or how good a deal it is.

It's all very well the posters on here saying we should buy this player, that player, take a risk, etc, but ultimately, thats fantasy football. We have financial restraints and we have to work within them.

I stand by my original post - we can't be losing money on transfer fee's, we need players to hold their value or increase. Buying "older" players and losing money on them is a short term view and fix.
Roberto Birquet
19   Posted 21/11/2011 at 13:46:11

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Jeremy

Roberto, as much as I like landon, and agree that £4 million would be a good deal, you're not going to see any of that money back. He'd play out his 3 years, and at 33 would move on for no value.
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Yes, I know. that is why I wrote: Yes the £4m would go.

And also I finished my post writing that the positives outweigh the negatives. Nothing you wrote adds anything to my calculations.
Matthew Salem
20   Posted 21/11/2011 at 14:27:43

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If we get him on loan, hopefully there isn't a clause that we must take Beckham as well...
Sean McKenna
21   Posted 21/11/2011 at 14:52:44

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Fuck Donovan; yes, he is a decent player but what's the point in getting another stop-gap? How's that going to improve the team long term?!

The thing is, Moyes has us fans watching so much shite, when we see someone like Felli do a drag-back, he becomes a god! Like Manny doing a few tricks, he is all of a sudden some sort of god! Like Donovan he is a bit quick so he has to be good... right! Like Barkley plays a 40-yard pass, he is the next Hoddle!!

We have to watch 6 defenders week-in, week-out, god forbid if we started playing like Spurs 'cause our fans would fucking shit themselves.
Jeremy Benson
22   Posted 21/11/2011 at 15:02:51

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Roberto, "your calculations" mean jack as you don't control Everton FC or their finances, nor are you in charge of transfers.

It's fantasy football...

The reality is that we haven't signed Landon, and probably won't, as we probably can't afford to. Reality.
Victor Chang
23   Posted 21/11/2011 at 15:35:58

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Take him on loan if we can, with a view to buy in the summer if all goes well.
John Daley
24   Posted 21/11/2011 at 15:10:35

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I've never really understood the whole Landon Donovan love-in to be honest. He was decent in a few games, anonymous in a couple, and dropped for the half-fit Herman Munster towards the end of his short spell. Yes, he brought a bit of pace and positivity to the team, and seemed to fit in well with the other players, but I can't believe he actually contributed enough to still be lauded nearly two years later.

I don't think a permanent deal is (or ever was) likely. A loan deal might happen because, well, we're not going to get anyone else in January are we? If it helps keep McFadden confined to the bench for a few more months then I guess that's a bonus as well.

However, I can't help but feel that any return for Donovan may end up a disappointing anti-climax for those who too readily bestowed hero status on him. A bit like the second coming of Manuel Fernandes, where the silky, skilful playmaker from his first loan spell was seemingly replaced by a fucking stoned Snoop Dogg for six months.
Tony J Williams
25   Posted 21/11/2011 at 15:54:32

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Unfortunately my last two memories of him was his horrendous sitter against Spurs and Anichebe getting a game before him.

Both instances make me throw up a little in my mouth when I think of them......
Ben Jones
26   Posted 21/11/2011 at 15:58:30

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Oh cmon, isn't it a coincidence that, when he arrived, we actually started playing well? He's got pace, he's got delivery, and he's got a work ethic.

And to Tony, Anichebe was actually good for us then. I remember one game against Birmingham specifically, when he played right wing, Ridgewell couldnt handle him. Yes, he's been crap this season.
Tony J Williams
27   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:06:35

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Ben, I remember that game, if memeory serves me, he scored a screamer.

However; he is like the UB40 song, with regards to decent performances. I am a 1 in 10 (I wish, more like 1 in 80)
Scott Hamilton
28   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:09:55

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Tony (25) - Personally I think of Donovan scoring the winner in the MLS Final; adding some genuine skill and proven firepower to a lacklustre Everton squad and at the potential for something positive just over the horizon...

Or do we never sign a player that has missed a sitter in his life (ie, everyone)?
Tony J Williams
29   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:16:42

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Scott, that would be hard to do seeing as it has just happened within the last 24/48 hours.

I am not trying to diss him at all, it will be better having an intelligent player with some speed in the team.

The worry is that we had other creative players in the side when he was here last and many may think he will somehow change this turgid team into winners just because he can run a little bit, I predict that he won't. I hope to God that I am proven wrong.
Andrew Ellams
30   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:16:59

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I can't see him leaving LA permanently at this stage of his career, so a loan deal will probably be the best we get. Seamus has been a hit and miss this season so maybe an alternative to rotate him with will be a good thing.
Mark Wayman
31   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:19:34

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Don't see the harm in bringing Landon over. I personally rated him during his first spell. I understand the argument against, i.e. playing instead of our younger players we could be seasoning, on the other side of the coin if he does well we get some decent US press.

On a side note to younger players getting a chance, Bily basically wants out yet he got 5 minutes against Wolves in a game he isn't cut out for, while Gueye with upper body strength and pace, sat on the bench.
Scott Hamilton
32   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:20:40

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I think that the excitement felt by many Blues over the potential signing of Donovan is down to a few understandable factors:

? We got a tantalising glimpse of what he is capable of during his last loan spell;

? He has continued to perform for the biggest club in the US ? including his winner as recently as this weekend;

? He has stated previously that he would love to come back to Everton, a club which he holds dear.

The latter point is absolute gold as far as Evertonians are concerned. I mean, a quality player that actually wants to come to us!

If we sign him and it all ends in tears, then so be it. Let's get him here first though eh?
Sam Hoare
33   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:23:46

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I'd be more interested in using funds to try and secure Drenthe's contract in January, when I think he will be able to sign a pre-contract with a club outside La Liga before a Bosman in the Summer.

I think he's been pretty first class whenever I've seen him and clearly offers somethings we are very short on, pace and flair.

Donovan would also offer those things but would rather a permanent addition than stop gap.
James Flynn
34   Posted 21/11/2011 at 16:40:02

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Can't see him back. After he all but begged to come back after the WC and Moyes saying he wanted him and nothing happened? Really, how often does that happen? No funds. Now, 2 years later we're in a worse financial position than then. Would love to see it happen but would be surprised if it did.

Too bad because, even though Moyes had him basically on the right flank, you can deploy Landon anywhere above the back 4 and he'll have a positive influence. Oh well.
Sam Hoare
35   Posted 21/11/2011 at 17:19:08

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James, I'm not sure we are in a worse financial position. We have put in around £20m of transfer fees over the last 2 years without spending any and have shifted quite a few high earners off the books as well.
Tom Bowers
36   Posted 21/11/2011 at 18:19:45

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Bring him back and give him Osman's wages then let Osman clean his boots.
James Flynn
37   Posted 21/11/2011 at 18:35:51

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Sam (35) - OK. I'll change it to we're in a bad financial situation, then and now.

After all, by EPL-wage standards, Landon's pretty cheap to get. Mostly, though, in today's game how often is it a player openly declares himself for a team, the manager openly declares he'd love to have him and absolutely nothing happens?

All academic anyway. He won't be back and money's the reason.
Joe McMahon
38   Posted 21/11/2011 at 19:56:47

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Tony@25, bloody hell man, cut him a little slack.
John Malone
39   Posted 21/11/2011 at 22:34:00

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Oh how good would it be to have an attacking player who can cross or shoot first time! He's by no means a great player but he's a cut above what weve got, I'd have him back tommorrow, I'd have anyone with some quality to offer tommorrow! And I'd part ex Johnny Heitinga for anyone what a cart horse! He runs like he's limping!
Jamie Sweet
40   Posted 21/11/2011 at 22:50:57

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Nice movement and quality finish from Landon for his goal in the final.

Oh how how I long to see some nice movement and a quality finish at Goodison.
Craig Harrison
41   Posted 22/11/2011 at 01:34:34

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How long would we get him for his team are playing the quarterfinals of the Champions League on March 6-8, 2012
Jason Lam
42   Posted 22/11/2011 at 01:37:44

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Landon would be a good signing. We're missing senior leaders on the pitch since Pienaar and Arteta left. I would pick him over Coleman and Drenthe. He's got footballing brains, unlike Coleman who just runs into walls, and Drenthe who just abuses he's speed and youth, and disrupts the team formation running and stopping aimlessly.

Landon is not a particular tall player so age should not be a problem, the taller bigger players slow down more evidently with age. He could be a Zola for us.
Mick Davies
43   Posted 22/11/2011 at 02:45:48

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The most important contribution Donovan made to Everton was his ability to ignite the side without being a champagne Charlie. He fitted into our team and we looked a lot better balanced with him raiding down the right side, and scoring the occasional cracker. The thing that puzzles me is, if we never had the money to buy him (about £4m if my memory is correct), where did we find £9m for the untried Bilyaletdinov?
Richard Lloyd
44   Posted 22/11/2011 at 13:39:42

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Bilyaletdinov was signed before Donavan arrived.
Roberto Birquet
45   Posted 22/11/2011 at 14:45:55

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Sean
Fuck Donovan; yes, he is a decent player but what's the point in getting another stop-gap? How's that going to improve the team long term?!
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Easy mate. What is long-term? There's no such thing in football. Most players would not stay beyond four years if they were good enough.

We've got plenty of young players, a bit of variety does no harm. We're hardly in aposition to be immensely choosy, either.

Donovan would also bring some experience. He's been captain of not just his Club (franchise, yuk!), but also of the national team. He has skill, he has pace, he wants to play for Everton, he's already played for us and fitted right in, so doesn't need bedding in time; he'd definitely improve the team; but hey, he's getting on so we wouln't have him for 7-8 years of him or get a big pay back when he leaves.

Oh, God. Terrible! Forget all the positives, we won't make money off him. We've got Anichebe anyway.

Bloody Hell, Jeremy, get back into bed, and then out on the right side. None of us control purse strings. What's that got to do with the right to air opnions?
Roberto Birquet
46   Posted 22/11/2011 at 16:05:11

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Andrew
I can't see him leaving LA permanently at this stage of his career, so a loan deal will probably be the best we get. Seamus has been a hit and miss this season so maybe an alternative to rotate him with will be a good thing.
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Frankly, it's now or never for him. Inside talk (ok, the Big Wheel, Sean Weelock) had it that he wanted to come here at the start of last season. And he stated this season that he would leave Galaxy, "but only for Everton".
Tony J Williams
47   Posted 22/11/2011 at 16:12:51

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"And he stated this season that he would leave Galaxy, "but only for Everton"." ? fuck him off, he is obviously a fecking nutter!!!
Sean McCarthy
48   Posted 23/11/2011 at 01:08:26

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If he's the world class player some on here seem to think he is then how come no-one else seems to be interested in signing him?? It's 2 years since he was here for 10 weeks yet some seem to think he's the best thing that's happened to us!! Yes he's a decent player but not that good that we should be starting petitions to get him back!!!
David Hallwood
49   Posted 23/11/2011 at 20:31:09

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It's probably reminiscing, and he?s two years older and Arteta?s gone so is Pienaar, but I remember his loan spell, and we beat Man Utd, Chelsea & City and should?ve beaten the RS. But it was the way we beat them, there was no giant killing banks of four, into their faces, we simply played them off the park, and it was like 1984 all over again-the birth of a great team, which sadly was strangled by lack of finances.

To my mind what Donovan brought to the side was pace, intelligence and solved the right hand side, which has been a problem since Trevor Steven left. Even now I think Coleman is a wing back or an attacking full back-a wide mid/winger he ain?t, he just doesn?t have the skill, trickery or intelligence to buy himself half a yard, and to my mind we still need a winger/wide man to give us some attacking options and to chip in with 10 goals a season.

Donovan fits the bill perfectly.
Jimmy Sørheim
50   Posted 24/11/2011 at 10:40:36

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Get him in on loan only. That will give us a lift, and will make sure Anichebe doesn't get back playing too premature.

Yongsters vs Donovan argument is a valid one, but David Moyes has had the chance to play Gueye and Barkley since August and chose NOT to. Why is that? Cause they are poor or out of form? Or they are not deemed good enough by Moyes.

I would say to those defending Moyes and his "fantastic" youth policy, look at our team now, and notice that Moyes want Donovan back instead of giving our youngsters a chance. Wow, I must say I am hardly impressed by what Moyes has done this season regarding blooding youngsters into the team.

Seems like he has given up on that blooding youth through first team thing. Now let's hear it from the Moyes apologists. I can't wait.
Nick Entwistle
51   Posted 24/11/2011 at 11:15:07

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How old is Beckham? How slow? And loan from who? He's leaving LA Galaxy isn't he?

He's so repugnant I wouldn't watch Everton for any time he poisoned the pitch with the blue shirt on.

Rather have Gerrard playing!
Brian Harrison
52   Posted 24/11/2011 at 11:21:48

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While I think Donovan on loan would be a good move, I think we desperately need a striker. I would definitely spend a million on Anelka, he is quick scores goals and can hold the ball up well. Yes I know his age is against him but rather than buy a striker from abroad who would take time to settle Anelka would hit the ground running.

I think we need to think short term being in our league position, as we might not have a long term future in the Prem.
Andrew Ellams
53   Posted 24/11/2011 at 11:28:30

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Really Nick. I think Beckham is actually a decent bloke, way beyond that obscene, cheating piece of filth from across the park.

Admittedly he is past his best for PL football, so a move wouldn't want him to come, but poison the pitch?
Gavin Ramejkis
54   Posted 24/11/2011 at 11:45:50

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I dont think Donovan is a bad shout, we know what he can do... and as far as the moans about him being two years older, well so are the rest of the players here that we haven't sold yet; we've had no new faces besides Stracq who doesn't get a game and Drenthe.

We still need a striker though, no goals and you can't win a game.
James Stewart
55   Posted 24/11/2011 at 11:52:30

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Gueye is the one I would really like to see given a chance.

Donovan would be a good signing though. I would play him up front or just off.

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