We caught up with Gaz in the pub and it was great to see the mad Welshman. He’s a mate from my days as a scholar in university and we all became good mates with Gaz going the match from the 2004-05 season up until 2008 when recession hit and he was unable to make the match anymore… it will be nice to see more of him throughout the season.
We caught the team news in the pub and were all a bit surprised with the line-up. With injuries and suspension taking its toll on our modest squad, the team was somewhat patched up. Jagielka filling in at right back, Oviedo made his first league start on the left, and Hitzlsperger continued in the middle. A look at the substitutes bench really highlighted the limitations of the squad with the returning Hibbert and Jan Mucha the only senior players on the substitutes bench. Norwich featured ex-Evertonian John Ruddy in goal and at the other end of the pitch their giant striker Grant Holt.
It was ‘Retro Day’ at Goodison Park with a 1980s style match program, a replica of the old ‘Pink Echo’ complimentary, old-styled black and white player photos and even Billy Butler reading out the line-ups pre-kick off. Everton won the toss and attacked the Park End in the first half. The referee, if you can call him one, was Mike Jones… I hope to not see him again in the near future…
So ‘retro’ was the theme and this seemed to transmit onto the pitch for both teams in what was very much a ‘kick and rush’ sort of game. It was truly dreadful throughout and I was pleading for the full time whistle long, long before Norwich pounced upon yet more slack defending from Everton to steal a point from this one.
It was a nervy opening to the game with the Goodison crowd rather flat. Osman got himself into a good shooting position but his shot was tame and straight at Ruddy but that was about it in the first few minutes though Everton slowly got a grip on things and it was Osman’s ball out to Oviedo which ultimately put Everton ahead. Osman’s ball was well cushioned by Oviedo whilst Whitaker slept. The Costa Rican then played a nice ball into Naismith who finished comfortably to put the Blues ahead.
We did quite well for the next 20 minutes or so, generally playing the game in Norwich’s half and Osman had another opportunity though again shot tamely when he ought to have done better. Norwich slowly got themselves back into the game whilst Everton’s defending boarded on suicidal at times. Two openings in particular for Norwich could have resulted in goals, one when Holt carried the ball through a few challenges and rasped well wide, the other when Bassong may have done better with a header I think from a corner.
Even in the first half, the referee was doing his best to spoil things – making a big deal out of apparent pushing and shoving in the box when we had a corner and then blowing up for a free kick the second the ball was played in; and then at the other end penalizing Baines for an obstruction possibly (it was hard to tell) and then realizing he’d called it incorrectly and blowing for a free kick to Everton once the ball was played into the box for an non-existent foul. Even early in the game he was making a deal out of things for which there was no need to, though there was worse to come in the second half…
Oh no, the second half. What a shambles that was. Overall, it made quite a mockery of the beautiful game that is football and was quite an embarrassment to the sport in my opinion. We were awful; Norwich, though deserving of a point were equally so – even if they did begin to show some ambition – and the referee... well, I don’t want to see him ever again. He was truly useless.
Moyes was arguably as useless today, however. With an hour gone in the game ,it was hopelessly apparent to us and most likely everyone else present that things needed changing. Naismith was doing a lot of running around but little else whilst the game was just passing Hitzlsperger by. Someone with a calm head and the intelligence to use the ball more effectively was needed. Quite why Barkley was even called back from Sheffield Wednesday just to sit on the bench, when things are that bad on the pitch, I just don’t know. He certainly couldn’t have done any worse than what was happening on the pitch.
Instead, Norwich, seizing the initiative, replaced a midfielder (Hoolahan) with a striker (Morison) and put on another attacking player in Simeon Jackson to try and get something out of the game. Our response? Nothing... not until Norwich had equalized on 89 minutes anyway, Bassong somehow bundling a ball in from a deep free kick as Everton gift yet another ridiculous goal and throw away three points.
Quite how with three centre backs on the pitch we managed to concede from that position I’m not sure but you somehow expected it. There was four minutes on the clock though we failed to make use of them and trudged of disappointed on full time. Yet more points dropped and 4th place now seems a laughable target in all truth... though had Naismith not crossed into oblivion when a simple pass to Jelavic was on, things could have been so much different. We were never going to score in the second half. John Ruddy was replaced by Mark Bunn with 10 minutes to go and we failed to even test him once.
The most frustrating thing about the match was of course Mike Jones however. I just couldn’t fathom him. He’d get himself in such ludicrous situations that any other respected official just wouldn’t have. The failure to control Norwich players positioning a supposed 10 yards from the ball when we had free kicks and corners was just incredible. He simply had no control over the game whatsoever and was a complete imbecile. That’s not why we lost the game (though apparently it was never a free kick which led to the Norwich goal). We lost due to tactical ineptness, an unbelievable tendency to concede last-minute goals in the most ridiculous of circumstances and injury and suspension to very key personnel.
Moving forward whilst looking backwards, that’s a ridiculous five draws in seven games with only one win to show for it, and that one we had to pull through the grinder against Sunderland. Until we stop conceding insane goals that’s not going to get any better. Thank God Hibbert appears to be on the way back as he can at least defend. It’s over two months since we last kept a clean sheet and we’ve conceded 14 goals in nine games since then so the equation is simple, particularly as we’ve scored 15 goals in this period since our last shut out…
Over to you Moyes, Stubbs and Weir. We’ve really got to work on our defending… particularly with Arsenal, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspurs in our next three games.
Howard: A lot of callers on the Radio City phone in on the way home were criticizing Howard for his reluctance to come of his line, particularly so with the goal. I’ll have to see it again as I was the other end of the pitch but when you think about it, you don’t see him coming for an awful lot outside of his six yard box. He did make a smart save from a free kick in the second half however. Distribution not great. 5
Baines: Did well, showing his usual consistency. He’s really starting to wear his heart on his sleeve a lot more. I enjoyed the earful he gave Jelavic as he just wasn’t showing anywhere near enough movement today. Unlucky not to score with a second-half burst and shot. 7
Distin: The better of the two centre backs which is hardly saying much. May be an area which needs to be looked at for next season. 5
Heitinga: Had a shocker. Was bullied everywhere by Holt. I think it would have been better putting Heitinga at right back and Jagielka in the middle. 4
Jagielka: Didn’t quite look comfortable there. The sooner Hibbert’s back the better. 5
Hitzlsperger: Aside from giving away silly free kick, I really don’t see what he offered to the team. Should have been subbed for Barkley on the hour mark as he wasn’t contributing at all. Understandable given how long he’s been injured of course, but he didn’t impact on the game at all this afternoon. 4
Osman: One of the better players. Carried the ball well and used it well but failed badly in front of goal on three occasions when he should have done a lot better. Still, certainly one of the better ones. 7
Oviedo: My Man of the Match. I didn’t like the look of him on his tough debut at Elland Road but I thought he was excellent today on both the left and the right. He’s a very lively player and was one of very few who could emerge with any credit from today’s game. Nice assist for the goal also. 8
Naismith: Scored yes but I remain unconvinced by his ability as a Premier League player, personified entirely by his ridiculous cross for Jelavic in the second half. Needs time of course as he’s back from a long, serious injury but I do worry he isn’t making the grade, despite his endearing efforts. 5
Pienaar: Good in flashes but generally poor. He gave the ball away far too often and didn’t combine with Baines nearly as effectively as he can do when he was stationed on the left in the second half. Needs to improve for sure. 5
Jelavic: Just didn’t get in the game at all. You need more running from your front man in games like this and he failed to find space. A Jelavic firing on all cylinders would have gotten on the end of Osman’s good ball in the second half and scored a typical poachers goal. He just wasn’t finding the positions today and really needs to get his form back quickly as we have no one else who can realistically play there. 5
Vellios (for Naismith): Tried to make an impact, perhaps too hard as his passes were ultimately wayward. A very tough ask to come into that sort of game though. 5
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048 Posted 24/11/2012 at 22:23:33
055 Posted 24/11/2012 at 23:19:33
We've all seen some poor sides over last few years but the frustration of results v Newcastle (h), Fulham (a), Reading (a) and today are surely up there with the most frustrating of all time!
First time I've posted as my only therapy on a 'bad result' night is ToffeeWeb. I get the feeling the season will be classed as "What could have been"!
I never thought I'd be so frustrated at being 5th at end of November! Coyb! As everyone who reads this site knows, I feel numb!!
059 Posted 24/11/2012 at 23:32:15
He just allows the pressure to build and is left looking despondent to the wave after wave of attacks from the opposition. He will not take action unless it is forced upon him or we are losing. This has cost us far too many times. I just wish one of his right hand men would have the balls to step up and give Moyes a little nudge.
074 Posted 25/11/2012 at 03:00:01
083 Posted 25/11/2012 at 08:10:06
Hindsight you would say bring Duffy on, as the hail Mary ball was going to be their most obvious threat with 4 minutes to go. Howard should of punched it having watched it again. Sating on the line cost us, with that crap foot shuffle that = goal.
094 Posted 25/11/2012 at 10:16:46
134 Posted 25/11/2012 at 12:54:51
It feels as if some psychological barrier has gone up just as we start to look good. Whether that barrier is in the player's heads, or the back room staff, I don't know... but we are much better and not so thin on the ground this season yet seem to lack the belief or conviction to make it count.
Just look at the side, position for position, against any other Prem side and we are mostly superior (excepting Chelsea and Man City and their problem is with their respective managers) yet we are now looking at a mid table-ish finish. Shame, let's drop the "we're a poor struggler" persona and start to play like what we are – a top class Premier League competitor.
141 Posted 25/11/2012 at 13:45:38
It was so painfully obvious what needed doing on that field and it just wasn't done. Naismith had to come off well before he had and put Barkley on behind the striker. One of the useless 3 centre backs we had on had to be replaced with Duffy. And Hibbert should have come on well before the end so we actually had a recognised right back on the field for at least some time.
The game was a joke and we were lucky to draw in my opinion. If Moyes doesn't pick it up soon, a Chelsea may be in order.
153 Posted 25/11/2012 at 14:52:32
I rate you 1/10!
183 Posted 25/11/2012 at 18:08:01
You could not be more wrong on Hitz. One of the shining lights of the 1st half who did two or three things with the ball – like, remember, the smart ball to get the goal move in motion – that are not even in Neville's songbook. Giving him 4 is nothing short of blind and outrageous.
Agree on Ovedio, but let's not forget that, like just about everyone else in blue, his 2nd half stint was a shadow of his 1st half.
186 Posted 25/11/2012 at 18:19:49
Whaddya think of them apples! Surely a big mistake... Oviedo has only looked any good playing on the left. Given the influence he was having early on, I wonder how crucial this decision was in the ultimate dropping of two more points.
187 Posted 25/11/2012 at 18:25:39
Now was there any real need to switch things after a first half where we played some nice stuff, were ahead, and, quite frankly, not really threatened by the lame looking Canaries? (Reminds me a little of a couple of weeks ago when we were ahead, looking dandy, and with 2 mins to go, Moyses changed it and we all know what happened next).
I can only imagine Moyes chatting with Roundy, eager eyes on Roundy's drawings, thinking that we need to change something and why not reunite Pienaar and Baines. Well, it went wrong and yes, if put on the spot, Moyes needs to shoulder the blame for a few recent decisions that have contributed to us not winning games we were for a long while in charge of.
194 Posted 25/11/2012 at 19:02:35
232 Posted 25/11/2012 at 20:55:12
Baines and Oveido are the only players who stood out yesterday and I think it was a mistake by Moyes to move Oveido to the right as Peinaar was having a mare.
Moyes should clearly see we were by-passing midfield so why not bring Velios on?
All this would be irrelevant had Howard just come and caught the ball.
241 Posted 25/11/2012 at 21:31:34
Listen, if PT decides to post his reviews then I have a right to say that I found this one (1) wrong and (2), like others in the genre, annoying for me at any rate with his so we got the bus, the tunnel was closed, mmmm chips for me today, stuff.
Just my view, like, but again I will say that I have nothing but admiration for your thoughtful, imaginative, intellectual, and poised response. Well done lad.
One last tip, before you grow up and have a family, make sure to take a few lessons in how to treat others including your own children. They're like driving lessons to give you some context, but don't involve driving cars.
262 Posted 26/11/2012 at 00:23:41
He takes the time to post a match report week in week out, and I personally find the added details regarding his build up to the game (as well as his player ratings) as an interesting point of difference to the other match reports.
Think you could do better? Well go for it, Toffeeweb is an open forum for anyone to post a match report if they wish.
Can’t be bothered though I assume? Just easier to have a dig at someone who actually does like to take the time to keep us informed on the games (as well as other club functions I may add).
So, as Franny quite rightly stated… if you don’t like it, don’t fucking read it. Or alternatively, just keep your discourteous thoughts to yourself.
Keep up the good work Mr Traill. It’s much appreciated by everyone apart from the occasional idiot.
265 Posted 26/11/2012 at 00:22:02
Other than over-rating Osman I consider it a fair report.
Enjoy your reports so keep em' coming.
Paul Traill, Each to his own as they say. I enjoy PT's observations. Certainly no less that your "witty" contributions.....
"Pienaar and Baines are as tight a duo we all seem to think as say Morecambe and Wise, Eric Sykes and Hattie Jacques, or Renne and Renato"
266 Posted 26/11/2012 at 00:49:40
spot on I say!
285 Posted 26/11/2012 at 10:38:28
There are plenty of other options on TW and elsewhere if you prefer a straightforward report.
306 Posted 26/11/2012 at 13:34:27
I could've spent much longer explaining that you where being a dick posting a critique of what is, a young lads report of his match day experience, but quite frankly I couldn't be arsed. Much like the way you can't be arsed typing up your own match reports.
So apologies if my response was too blunt for your liking, but you can always just read Jamie Sweets response, which says the same thing just more eloquently than mine.
308 Posted 26/11/2012 at 13:55:56
The fact is, we aren't good enough. We'll probably have a decent season and finish somewhere between 7th and 10th. Come January, our goal will be to finish above the RS again despite teams like Arsenal, Spurs, Newcastle, RS not being as good as they once were. That's what being an Evertonian is all about nowadays. Sad though it is. We need to wake up and accept that this is all Everton will be good for with the current regime.
From a few weeks back we've gone from lauding players to saying they are not good enough to wear the shirt. Last week, there was a thread about the Reading game. I went through and totalled up every player who was named by at least one contributer as not being good enough. It was utterly depressing. Only Baines and Fellaini were omitted.
The fact is, we are a decent team with a prudent manager. No more. No less. We'll have some results when we think we're getting back to where we belong. We'll have other weekends that are simply ruined by an abject performance. Different season. Same old story.
What's 'same old story' in latin, anyone?
322 Posted 26/11/2012 at 15:14:34
And I stick by all I said about the mistakes in the report and my view of its tenor and tone. Churlish? Childish? If you can't be arsed to write your own report then don't have a dig at someone who does.
Well, okay, retrospectively:
'I slipped out of bed in the cold weather at about 7:45am leaving the missus in bed. Getting excited as I put one foot in front of the other and went down the stairs. Grey skies outside and greying lawns, hope that's not an omen for the match.
Hmmmm eggs and muffins or smoked salmon bagels, but got the coffee beans ground first of course, mmm love that smell. Perhaps I might nip downtown to watch the match in the alehouse or will it be HD at home? Benny, Bobby, and Billy won't be there today so I'll stay put, it's 24°F outside anyway. Shower before or after the match?
As I was walking into the garden to pick up the New York Times – they throw it on the lawns over here – my phone hummed and the team news came through. Pleased to see Hitz starting, I'm sure he'll play much better today than that Paul Trail fella will say. No Mirallas, that's a blow. Surely not Osman behind Jelly, ah no I see what's going on... That leather sofa needs to be replaced or upholstered.
Got me EFC CD so I can put on Z Cars at 8:56. Eggs sizzling nicely, coffee going down like a Stella on County Road. Buzzing. Everyone, well just me, talking excitedly about the right back slot."
[Do you really want me to go on with this???????]
Team texted through, better sit...
327 Posted 26/11/2012 at 16:34:41
Sarcastic bastard... but good though.
330 Posted 26/11/2012 at 17:22:50
Here's my go...
Woke up, got outa bed, dragged a comb across my head
Found my way downstairs and drank a cup and looking up I...
332 Posted 26/11/2012 at 17:39:46
335 Posted 26/11/2012 at 17:56:56
Every morning after I have meditated for 30 minutes, I fire my lappy up and....
338 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:14:06
I always pictured you as bald.
339 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:07:28
Woke up, got outa bed, dragged a comb across my head, screamed..... baldy get!!
341 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:17:18
"pot calling kettle black"
There's enough problems regarding racism in football without you starting on kitchen implements.
342 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:32:59
343 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:27:20
346 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:17:37
Woke up & eased my way gingerly out of bed carefully trying not to waken Cheryl or Nadine both of whom had a late night what with the concert and all.
Getting back from my 10k run I just had time to call my breakfast order to Chef Marco before jumping into a slightly cooler than expected pool. I had only managed forty lengths when my solitude was interrupted by the ringing of a distant telephone and the sound of hurried footsteps.
"Mr Mc, Mr Mc"...(it was Jeeves)..."It's a Mr Moyes wishing to discuss January's transfer strategy." "Coming Jeeves," I said just allowing myself a wry smile as the thought crossed my mind: "If only that baldy get Barry Rathbone could see this!"
349 Posted 26/11/2012 at 18:58:19
350 Posted 26/11/2012 at 19:04:32
353 Posted 26/11/2012 at 19:31:14
486 Posted 27/11/2012 at 16:01:25
The egg yolk erupted over my mouth covering it in deep yellow, the colour of our opponents today – I wondered if that meant something. Yoke rhymes with joke and I truly hope that we make the singing canaries look like a joke when 10-45/4-45 rolls around. I licked the crumbs from each side of the mouth, grateful once more that I do not have a beard to tache, like two-thirds of our starting eleven: for what it’s worth, I think that Ozzie wins the tache race, hands down, he has become more mature since his international call up.
Nine minutes to kick off and I’m excited. ‘Here we go, Here we go’ leaps out from my Bose iPod player; I smile as I think of the lads running down the stairs on Terry Wogan’s show bouncing balls, miming one of our greatest songs. I turn up the sound to drown out Mrs Ferry’s post-coitus snoring. Thoughts flood back to last night’s marathon sex bout and a particular piece of gymnastics sends shivers up and down my spine and my Terry Darracott starts to do its impression of a flagpole. I reach for my glove but it’s 8:56am; Z Cars time. The military beat of the opening drums sends me marching round by house like a gung-ho young Mussolini advocate. 8:58am, I dive on the sofa (leather) arms flapping and flailing like dickhead Howard flapping and flailing like a turd at a cross. TV comes on. ‘I Love Lucy’. Hmmm match/I Love Lucy, I Love Lucy/match? Coin toss. Match wins. Match starts. I immediately fall to sleep.
9:11am or so and I wake up. A roar. Get in. Nice one. We’ve scored. Sadly your trusty match reporter isn’t sure who scored. More ZZZZZZsss. Half-time, and all the talk here at Chez Ferry is about who the fuck scored. A plaintiff plea from above reminds me that her indoors wants her tea and runny boiled eggs with soldiers. Job done like a true blue trooper I flop on the sofa only to find that I have missed the first 8 minutes of the second half: would you Adam and Eve it, I chuckled to myself. The loud pip of the final whistle brought me out of the liminal twilight world between sleep and consciousness. Thoughts turned straight away to my conclusions and player ratings. Thus:
Howard – twat turd – unforgivable error for the 2nd penalty – sort it out Moyes: 0.42
Jags – great turn for the second goal otherwise??????: 1.38
Baines – Mr Moyes he is not a stand in centre-half OKAY: 3.67
Distin – who????: 1.22
Flying Dutchman – your ship has sunk sir: 0.64
Hitz – don't get me started on German clichés, what a gobshite: 9.23
Osman – worth 1.0 for the tache alone: 1.0
Nayshit – thought he had one of his better games, was everywhere, great first touch throughout – looks very comfortable on the ball: 6.89
Costa Rica fella – slow down on the coffee before the game son: 3.11
Peanuts – MotM by a country mile, great to see him back to his old self again – great link up play with Distin – lovely shimmy for the 4th goal: 9.57
Jelavic – Mrs Ferry’s favourite, she wants to hump him big style and called me Jelly in bed last night at a sensitive moment on a sensitive spot: 0.23
Anichebe – the ref had no option but to give him a straight red after that quite frankly unEvertonlike attempted murder on Colin Suggett – 22,456 people saw it with their own eyes: -4.17
Neville – sub – not used – God/Allah be praised.
All round a satisfactory day at the races, I thought. Bring on the Baggies on Wednesday, I’ll be there on the sofa at 2:00pm
616 Posted 28/11/2012 at 01:21:09
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