The board have a big decision to make

By Paul Traill 01/10/2017  77 Comments  [Jump to last]
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Everton 0 - 1 Burnley

Gaz picked me up in plenty of time and we were in The Medlock not too long after the Arsenal game began. Another friend Jim was already in the pub by the time we arrived. Jim went on to tell us that one of his mates who works at LFCTV who is apparently a bit “in the know” was telling him a few days ago that Ronald Koeman had lost the senior players at Everton, labelling Leighton Baines in particular as one who has fallen out with our Dutch manager. All very believable following today’s Everton performance and given the pressure, from the supporters at least, that he is now under, I wouldn’t be surprised if by the time this match report is online, the proverbial bullet had already been shot at Ronald Koeman.

It was pleasant in the pub with the rest of the guys turning up, and it’s fair to say that we were largely pelased with the starting XI, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Oumar Niasse and Nikola Vlasic all featuring. My presumption was that this meant some actual width in the team with Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Nikola Vlasic operating on the flanks, though this turned out not to be the case, and it was something of a 4-4-2, but not quite, with no actual width. As throughout the season so far, the line up was confusing.

We arrived in plenty of time for kick off, the players switched ends and we attacked the Gwladys Street in the first half, Burnley well backed by their supporters.

I’ve nothing but good things to say about how we began the game, particularly in comparison with how we have been playing recently. Burnley did force a corner kick in one rare furrow forward but otherwise, in the first 20 minutes, it was all Everton. Gylfi Sigurdsson, in a very disappointing display, missed two golden chances at 0-0, one when he side footed tamely at Nick Pope, and another when he had a chance to shoot but tried to dribble it through and got tackled. We were on top, make no mistake, but then, on 21 minutes, Jeff Hendrick struck, after neat footwork to find the space to put us a goal down.

With that our bottle had gone and we couldn’t find a way back in. We might as well have called half time there and then as we just couldn’t drag ourselves back for the rest of the half.

In the second period we huffed and puffed but with no cohesion and no end product. Our play was disjointed throughout against a very dogged Burnley team. Oumar Niasse, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and, later on, Ashley WIlliams, all came close with headed opportunities but we couldn’t find the equaliser and we went home again dissapointed. There were a could of handball shouts from the Park End in the second half but being at the other end of the field we couldn’t see what happened and I’ve no idea how reasonable the claims where. The players certainly appealed but I don’t know if the claims were desperate or feasible. At full time we, again, trudged off disappointed.

The talk on everyone’s lips after the game of course was, should Ronald Koeman be sacked. It’s safe to say, most of the supporters seem to think so. Personally, I’m pretty neutral. Looking back, I was always quick to defend David Moyes as I liked the guy, though Roberto I was always quick to stick the knife in as I was never convinced by the appointment. With Ronald Koeman, I’m very on the fence. I was generally happy with the appointment even if I thought other options may have been pursued, and after the improvements last season part of me wants to give him time to see it through.

Conversely, it’s a results business and the results aren’t, and don’t look like, coming. It’s hard to defend how we are playing but I suppose it’s difficult to integrate so many new players into a new team, especially a struggling one. If there was ever a season we could have done with a stable run of fixtures this was it. Margins have been tight in some of the games and things could have perhaps have been different.

That said, things have been unbearable to watch at times. Our play is dreadful and team selections have been poor, but will sacking Ronald instantly make things better? Should he not be given the chance to build his team? I don’t know which way to turn but if they are going to make the decision to sack Ronald, do it now, before the international break. It’s better to do it now then later.

The board have a big decision to make. Stick or twist. But make the decision now, and stick to your guns.

Pickford: Not sure he could have done anything with the goal. Distribution positive, especially second half. 6

Baines: My friend Jim might be on to something with his intel. Leighton has seemed out of sorts for a good few games now. 5

Williams: Awful. It was he and not Holgate who should have been dropped after Thursday. 4

Keane: Clearly not fit. 5

Martina: Yes, I’m here to be shot at but he was my Man of the Match. Pretty solid defensively and got forward well. His quality of crossing was not up to scratch but he did as much as anyone else. 6

Gueye: Worked hard, made some tackles but his decision making on the ball was poor. 6

Schniederlin: Rather anonymous before substituted. 5

Sigurdsson: Was poor, which was very disappointing as I’ve felt that he’s really been getting there these last couple of games. He missed two good first-half chances and otherwise didn’t get that engine revving enough. A poor display from our record signing. 5

Vlasic: Did okay first half but faded in the second before he was substituted. 6

Calvert-Lewin: Worked hard but didn’t put his chances away. 6

Niasse: Began well but faded badly in the second half. 5

Rooney (for Schneiderlin): Seemed to play central midfield and though he tried, he didn’t have the required impact. 5

Davies (for Vlasic): Did more than most to sort out the mess we were in. 6

Ramirez (for Niasse): Didn’t do anything. 5


Reader Comments (77)

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Ian McPherson
1 Posted 01/10/2017 at 19:34:33
Koeman looks like he lost the dressing room quite awhile ago. Doesn't look like he's going to get it back either this week.

Martina - 6? I would have Coleman on crutches before this joker.

Christy Ring
3 Posted 01/10/2017 at 19:55:38
I don't see it as a big decision. It's a no-brainer, he has to go for the good of EFC.
Jamie Barlow
4 Posted 01/10/2017 at 19:59:12
I can't see Moshiri sacking him after letting him down in the transfer window.
Still nowhere near good enough but I thought that was the best we've played all season.
Martin Mason
5 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:06:18
Schneiderlin is like a black hole in the middle of the park with lots routed to him and nothing coming out.

I didn't think that Niasse was any worse than other options.

Ed Curry
6 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:12:06
If that was the best we have played this season, it says it all. Dreadful.
Dennis Stevens
7 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:12:30
I disagree somewhat, Paul. Although I wouldn't be upset if the Board acted now, I think there is a case for reviewing the situation at the next break in about a month's time. That will give Koeman a further seven matches in which to get his squad at least looking like they're a team attempting to execute some kind of plan.

At the moment, I'm even more concerned by the disjointed performances than I am by the results, & I'm very unhappy about the results! If there's no real improvement by the match on 5th November we have a perfect opportunity to change manager.

This timing would still allow the new manager an opportunity to turn things around in advance of the January transfer window, otherwise we'll find it exceedingly difficult to sign anybody worth having.

Dave Abrahams
8 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:16:37
Paul, thanks for getting you're match report in so quickly and I think you will get a lot of support in the fact that the board have a big decision to make. I hope they make a quick one.

Also think you will get a lot of bullets going your way appointing Martina as your man of the match; very poor and very very docile.

Carl Taylor
9 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:27:43
The board have one decision to make, when to sack him. I'm hoping the only reason it hasn't been announced yet, is that they are sorting his replacement out before it is.
Danny Broderick
10 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:28:38
I agree with Dennis (7) regarding any possible change of manager. We have to give Koeman and the new signings a chance to turn this around. I am as disappointed as anyone about the last couple of games particularly. But we had a bad run of 1 win in 12 in October / November last year, and we managed to turn that around.

The only pleasing thing for me today is that the manager at least changed formation, and we didn't have 3 Number 10s shoe horned into the team. I am hoping this means that he is aware of what we are all saying – mainly that we need width and more options up front. I was pleased that Vlasic started – I would have liked to see Mirallas / Lennon / Lookman get an opportunity though, particularly when we were chasing the game.

We've got problems, but I don't want to press the panic button just yet.

Dennis Ng
11 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:29:15
If the board wasn't thinking about replacing him at first, they should be thinking of a backup plan now at least. If we go on like this till November, it could be too late. They have to at least have another manager ready at the phone by the next game.
Phillip Mark
12 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:38:20
Get Unsworth in until the end of the season and give big Duncan a crack at the rezzies. Might also be enough to get Barkley to sign. Our midfield looks prosaic without him despite his flaws...
Ian Hollingworth
13 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:43:19
Oh yes they do, and they need to give us a clear steer on the clubs ambitions.

Positive statements of intent at the AGM but we need to see real action. We need a clear out at the top, ie, Kenwright and his cronies.

The coming weeks are going to be a real test of Mr Moshiri's ambitions and intent for Everton FC.

We need a strong winning mentality from the top down. 22 fucking years – you miserable shower of cowards and losers.

Steve Cotton
14 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:54:23
Why oh why won't he give look man a game??
Phil Davies
15 Posted 01/10/2017 at 20:58:27
I think he has to go. There's a number of reasons behind the decision not just performances have been poor,. The way in which we lost to Spurs, Chelsea, Man Utd and Atalanta was a disgrace, they way we played against a 10 man Man City was also a disgrace.

In my opinion, we've had only one good half of football all season (first half against split). Apart from Pickford, none of the signings have looked anywhere near good enough. The formations haven't matched the players playing in it (three No 10s). The players look completely devoid of any confidence and Koeman doesn't look as though he's actually giving them any.

I think the biggest point now though that shows me he should go, is that now he's making excuses as to why we're not performing instead of holding his hands up and saying "My bad, sorry."

With the possibility of Ancelotti, I think talks need to be had to see if he'd be interested, And without any shadow of a doubt, this time we need a manager with a track record of winning games on a regular basis.

Philip Yensen
16 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:11:13
I say put big Dunc in charge and if the players don't graft he can strangle the lazy arrogant bastards. Koeman is a blond/ginger Martinez.

The board gave him money and he fucked up. 5 number 10s. We are not fit. A yard too slow and the attitude is absolute shite. Not one decent performance on the field today.

Our new ground is going to be empty.

Andy Crooks
17 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:14:42
Paul, I do not think there is a remote chance of Koeman being sacked. I would take courage, strength and decisiveness. Those running our club have none of those. They are weak, spineless, dithering, devoid of inspiration and utterly self serving. They are there to make money and, in my view, they hold supporters in total contempt.
Tony Hill
18 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:17:37
Andy Crooks - hear, hear.
Jim Wilson
19 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:18:41
There is no decision to make. He should be gone. He has blown it big time with all that money.

None of his summer signings are as good as Barkley, McCarthy, Davies, Mirallas and Lookman. It beggars belief that he won't play the last 2 or start Davies in the league.

He changes the team for every game not giving the chance for his players to gel and messes about with the formation with regularity. And his arrogant treatment of Barkley has backfired on him.

It has to Unsworth now, picking up the pieces.

Jimmy Hogg
20 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:21:27
It's very easy to sack the manager, but would a new manager do any better?

We don't have a quality striker and we have a lot of players that need time to gel. No manager can take 11 strangers and blend them in to a team overnight.

The simple fact is a new manager will need to start all over again and does not guarantee to be any better. Let's give the man time and hope the injured players can get back and improve us.

We the fans need to stay loyal, lift the players and not get on their backs. Time and patience is needed, not chopping and changing managers.

Colin Glassar
21 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:30:56
Moshiri, if he's serious, needs to make his move now. If it wasn't him he should find out who authorised the sale of Lukaku and why wasn't he replaced immediately.

I don't know if he can sack Kenwright, Wood, Elstone and all the other deadbeats but surely he can remove them from any activities related to Everton FC.

He also needs to replace Koeman and Walsh who, so far, have shown themselves to be incompetent in the extreme. Well, I'm not so sure about Walsh's role in all this but his smug smile pisses me off.

John McGimpsey
22 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:45:23
Again, Colin, on the money. Kenwright, Woods etc need shooting... Koeman, their kid and the big Jock removed asap.

There is a better squad in there somewhere; let someone with balls have it and make us great.

Koeman out, Kenwright out, Woods out, front bench guys out... Unsy in maybe... because all the top managers are in a job.

Roy Noon
23 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:54:33
Well, Ancelotti has recently become available. If he still has the hunger, and Moshiri is prepared to stump up the compo, perhaps its time to get rid of Koeman now. I must admit, I am not convinced of his coaching or man management abilities. I think he got lucky last season with the emergence of Tom Davies and the improved form of Barkley .before we tailed off.

I still think we have a decent bunch of players, although there is a clear lack of balance. And though we were led to believe that Steve Walsh, was the evil genius behind the success of Leicester City, I tend to think that, just like Leicester, he had a lucky season too; he can join Koeman in the infamous taxi.

Just hope this isn't going to be one of those relegation dogfight seasons.

Andrew James
24 Posted 01/10/2017 at 21:59:47
We are as good as out of the Europa League and the League Cup. So, for me, it has to be how much the board want to gamble with a league placing. Let him go now, we might see a response and 7th is achievable. We might even get Barkley back in.

Don't let him go, there be no improvement – although the fixtures are going to be easier now, I can see us throwing away cheap points – and come November, we might be in a relegation battle.

Being devil's advocate, many of the Premier League sides we've played are in the top half and 3 of the best, we played away. But to counter that, we finished poorly last season so when Koeman refers to the wins we've had since we began the Europa League, it might be worth looking back at the last 5 matches of last season to truly reflect our form under him.

When you look at those, combined with the loss to the Cypriot side and that Niasse saved our skin against Bournemouth, he's being disingenuous. Remember, at Man City we were against 10 men and still barely attacked them.

I can't see a convincing argument based on these results to retain his services.

Frank Payne
25 Posted 01/10/2017 at 22:12:12
Here is the big question: at this point do we blame Koeman or the board?

I am still in shock that the board did not have a Plan B, C, D & E in place if the Giroud transfer did not go through. It did not; nothing seemed to happen for a couple of weeks on the striker, and then the mindless panic set in the last week of the transfer period.

Again, I am not seeing any of the games, so Koeman may have it all wrong on the pitch, but I also think that Everton are missing what should be their key player from the last transfer period to make the team complete. Does sacking Koeman make a difference if we don't have a starting striker on the team?

Denis Richardson
26 Posted 01/10/2017 at 22:39:52
Not sure why people are saying "Give him till the next international break". We've got 4 games till then and three are against Lyon, Arsenal and Chelsea.

Given that we just lost at home to Burnley, only managed a draw at home to a no mark side from Cyprus before that and but for Pickford's heel and a minor Niasse miracle would have lost at home to Bournemouth – what change are people realistically expecting over the next 4 weeks?

Whether Koeman is a good manager or not is at this time irrelevant imo. What's clear is that he's lost the dressing room. Too many players are not playing for him and I just can't see that changing. The whole team and squad is a mess as it is.

Mirallas and Lookman seem out in the cold and they're two of the very few pacey attacking players we have.

Rooney, Klaassen and Sigurdsson can't play together, so two of these three are basically pointless. (Why we signed Rooney I'll never know – we pay him £150k a week! Utter joke.)

Davis is the only proper CM we have in the squad, Ghana, Schneiderlin and McCarthy all being CDMs, yet he starts on the bench.

And of course Calvert-Lewin is the only proper striker with any hint of quality, and he's a kid learning his trade! (Despite the Bournemouth game, Niasse is not Premier League standard.)

The whole team and squad set up is a massive WTF??

On reflection you have to wonder how on earth a Premier League club ended up with such an unbalanced squad. And this after spending £150m!

The board need to spend the next couple of weeks looking for a new manager. It's time to end this experiment and bring someone in to get these players playing in a proper formation.

The elephant in the room however is that the board themselves are also to blame. Kenwright ain't going anywhere, unless it's in a coffin, unfortunately. What ever happened to his supposed 'grave illness'? Seems to have made a remarkable recovery after cashing some of his shares for multiple millions.

Times like these that make me question why we even bother.

Sorry. Rant over.

Gary Mortimer
27 Posted 01/10/2017 at 22:50:49
Give him time? He's already had 15 competitive matches this season.

The performances are not getting any better. The team is shapeless, passionless, defensive and because he plays 2 "defensive" midfielders every bloody game always, always on the back foot.

Nil satis nisi optimum my arse!

Kunal Desai
28 Posted 01/10/2017 at 23:09:48
Why would you want to give a manager another month, if rumoured to be true has lost the senior players?

If this is the case there is only one outcome here, the manager goes. The board need to do some serious thinking, get to the bottom of this mess and find really whats going and make a decision in the best interests of the club.

Dave Williams
29 Posted 01/10/2017 at 23:10:45
Denis – shameful references to Koeman there, otherwise you make valid points.

It isn't the fault of the board – the players are playing poorly and the manager is clueless.

Ian Riley
30 Posted 01/10/2017 at 23:13:48
Nothing is going to change!

The international break. Thank goodness!

John Raftery
31 Posted 01/10/2017 at 23:29:38
After 14 matches this season, there is absolutely no evidence things are any better than they were in the first game on 27th July. In fact they are a whole lot worse. The experiment with 4-4-2 will never work while we continue to play without any width and while we have defenders who sit too deep.

Players criticised last season for being average have been replaced at great expense by a bunch of mediocrities who look even less equipped to perform a pressing game or delivering the productivity the manager said was lacking when he arrived.

Oh for a few of those 'uninspired' wins we recorded at home in the spring. Those days seem a long time ago. Much as I would like to see Unsworth in charge from tomorrow I don't believe anything will be done before the November international break. Given our current malaise it seems highly likely by then we will have lost three cup matches and league matches against Arsenal, Leicester and Watford. That ought to be enough to persuade the Board to act before we play what will be a vital match, Crystal Palace away on 18th November.

Simon Crosbie
32 Posted 01/10/2017 at 23:59:02
In any sport, once you lose the confidence of the players there is no going back. A souffle cannot rise twice. Koeman is cactus.
Michael Kenrick
Editorial Team
33 Posted 02/10/2017 at 00:22:53
"Koeman is cactus"?!?!

Apparently some readers think we are allowing too many personal insults... I admit that, being unfamiliar with the art of botanical insults, this one had me pause.

But quickly consulting the Urban Dictionary*, I learned that it is an acronym for Cocky Ass Cracker Talking Uber Shit.

Hmmm... you may be crossing a line there, fella!

[* Also could mean "Koeman is dead", which definitely crosses a line. Which is it, Simon? ]

Amit Vithlani
34 Posted 02/10/2017 at 00:41:25
So, Farquad sorry Farhad has spoken in defence of Big Ron

"Maj. shareholder @Everton Farhad Moshiri: "We're in a bad moment - but these are early days & Koeman has my total support". @talkSPORT 10am"

Not surprising in itself.


But once again it comes via Jim White. Why is he Moshiri's spokesman? It is getting beyond a joke.

Kristian Boyce
35 Posted 02/10/2017 at 01:17:01
Quite a few of the morning papers are saying that he's facing the sack. If there was anytime to do it, now would be the best as there's a international break.

As much as I'm not a fan of his, Kenwright might hold the trump card in this affair. Straight off the bat it was known as Koeman was Morshiri's man, identified by him personally. Kenwright idiotically wanted to keep Martinez and I don't recall Kenwright ever talking or associating with Koeman. I think there's been issues between the two for a while, with the quickly muted rumours of transfer disagreements over the summer.

Koeman has always put transfer/contract talk as the responsibility of the management. I believe that the Rooney return was not wanted by Koeman, but it was pushed by the the romantic Kenwright. Koeman targeted Sigurdsson and Klaassen from the start of the window, but somehow we ended up with all 3.

In the end of the day Moshiri is a business man, and if he sees that something isn't working in business, he would change it. I would imagine Kenwright would be more than happy to have a word in his ear about a change.

Ron Marr
36 Posted 02/10/2017 at 01:18:31
Andy #17 accurately describes the Suits in control of the club. I was expecting them to tweet "top 10 is best we could hope for with all the changes"
Ernie Baywood
37 Posted 02/10/2017 at 01:27:26
Michael, don't know that I've ever heard the phrase cactus uttered outside Australia. The meaning is closer to your second, bracketed, interpretation but doesn't carry the same depth of meaning.

If I used the phrase then I'd agree that Koeman is cactus... he's done, his days are numbered, his managerial reign is bereft of life etc... still, beautiful plumage.

Derek Thomas
38 Posted 02/10/2017 at 01:34:58
So Moshiri has issued the dreaded 'Vote of Confidence' via Jim White...that usually means 2 weeks max. before the axe falls. Factoring in the break, make that 3 or 4. - Can't wait.

I've been picking after the Watford game for a few weeks now. Long enough to see the trend and hopefully, early enough to stop the rot.

Andy McNabb
39 Posted 02/10/2017 at 03:19:26
Michael, Ernie #37 answered that query well. I never heard the expression until we moved over here but to describe someone or something as 'cactus' is not an insult. It's simply an observation that they are finished.

I used the expression yesterday to describe Jonathan Rae's chances of winning the second Superbikes race after he had to withdraw and I don't have a bad word to say about Rae.

Simon Crosbie
40 Posted 02/10/2017 at 04:02:23
Michael,

'Cactus' is Aussie slang for broken or dysfunctional.

"Prickly Pear Cactus (native South American), was brought to Australia in 1788 on the First Fleet. It became a pest, quickly overrunning many thousand acres of farmland. Hence, 'cactus', in Australian slang, means: beaten, finished, ruined, kaput etc. eg, Jim threw just two punches, and Jack was cactus."

Maybe,

"Everton performed dismally, and Ronald was cactus."

Paul Ferry
41 Posted 02/10/2017 at 04:26:17
Paul, you need to move south towards 0 and north towards 10 in your ratings. They are like Koeman's set-ups, stuffed across the middle, 4-7.

Pickford 6 – he did fine, not at fault for the goal, could command the box better, some very good distribution, virtually nothing to do in the 2nd half.

Martina 4 – as Paul says he tries and he works hard to get forwards in a formation that he does not suit, some woeful crosses, loses possession too often too easily, not a great defender.

Keane 5 – he has Williams next to him, confidence seems low, tried hard in the 2nd half, one great run I remember, one of the least of my worries right now.

Williams 2 – this jarg fake Taffy Brummy should be nowhere near the first team, an absolutely appalling reader of the ball with Forest Gump's positional sense, a howler in him whenever the ball comes near him, our worst bad apple by a mile, get rid asap.

Baines 3 – it's over mate, I think; wish you were not going through this, try and get Tierney in January.

Schneiderlin 2 – shite.

Gueye 4 - high work-rate, a lot not coming off for him right now, but then he's hardly alone, nowhere near as bad as some make out, if Koeman hits the road to Damascus, Gueye ought to be our one holding midfielder.

Sigurdsson 5 – a glimmer of hope now and then and to be fair fitness is getting better and more getting about the pitch today, but we should have been 1-0 maybe 2-0 up through the lad.

Vlasic 6 – a breath of hope in dire times and someone who has energy and yes, pace, so why the feck does Koeman rely on wing-backs for width?

Niasse 6 – MotM of the 1st half, tries and runs hard and is no Eddie the Eagle but is no long-term solution, better as an impact sub maybe, he did tire quite quickly second half.

Calvert-Lewin 7 – yes 7, I just well like him, he does not know the meaning of give up, runs, gets into good positions, looks to shoot, better hold-up play will come in time, this lad is class.

Koeman 4 - better starting XI but why rely on full-backs for width, why two holding midfielders home or away, why Williams, why bring Vlasic inside, why no Lookman, erm Kenny.... agghhhhh.

Sadly, more south than north today, way more south.

Everton XI vs Brighton: Pickford - Kenny - Keane - Holgate - Baines - Gueye - Davies - Vlasic - Lookman - Sigurdsson - Calvert-Lewin

Jay Harris
43 Posted 02/10/2017 at 05:26:14
Paul, much of what you say makes sense although, if Koeman has lost the dressing room he needs to go.

IMO the dressing room has never been the same since Moyes left and I do believe there is something rotten at the core at etc whether it be Bill and cronies, cliques of players, or just the management.

Whatever it is Koeman is carrying the can and while I agree with you that we need to be patient (a sentiment echoed by Robbie Mustoe today) This shambles has to be stopped immediately, so Mr Moshiri show us your leadership skills.

Denver Daniels
44 Posted 02/10/2017 at 08:13:59
We need a replacement lined up before we even think of letting him. Tuchel looks like he's going to Bayern so that's one option gone.
John G Davies
45 Posted 02/10/2017 at 08:40:50
We should approach Mourinho or Guardiola. Ask them to bring Pogba or De Bruyne with them depending on which one of them wins the fight to be our manager.

There is as much chance of this happening as Ancelloti and Cavani.

Andrew Clare
46 Posted 02/10/2017 at 08:46:35
Koeman will probably be given until the end of November for the team to gel together.

At the moment that looks very unlikely. We look like relegation material.

It appears that we have bought a bunch of average players but at least our net spend was only circa £40 million. Maybe with a new manager they will look like bargains.

With the exception of Joe Royle it's been decades since we have had a good manager, our board has been a complete dead loss, I hope Moshiri is not going down the same road.

It's so tiresome constantly replacing one bad manager with another or happily sticking with a mediocre manager because he got us to the dizzying heights of seventh on a regular basis. Talk about lack of ambition!

Please hire a winner. Someone with a track record of winning leagues and cups. Pay them the right money and they will come here. Surely it's worth paying the extra wages as the returns will be great success.

Colin Glassar
47 Posted 02/10/2017 at 08:57:10
Is he still our manager? I woke up in a fairly optimistic mood. I think I’ll go back to sleep.
Kim Vivian
48 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:07:50
Good report from Paul, there although I don't agree with all his ratings but I do agree that Martina was not as bad as people are making out. He has actually been quite a surprise to me although I still don't really rate him.

There have been various posts asserting to our 'revival' after November last year following a dismal run of 1 win in 12 before that, and using that as a template for giving RK more time. It is telling that after the beginning of December, through to the end of the season, out of 46 goals scored only 11 were from players currently getting game time either because of departure, injury or ostracisation. 2 of those 11 were pens scored by L Baines.

I, like Paul says in the main piece, have been somewhat on the fence regarding how much time RK should get, with one foot in and one out of the 'sack him' camp thinking he would probably resign by the end of October without a marked improvement. My disappointment at the Jim White announcement last night - assuming there is some truth in it and I think there is - brought home to me that I really want to see the end of this tenure as soon as possible.

I can see us achieving nothing this month other than at Brighton possibly although that is no certainty and that is followed by 5 games in 14 days which I expect to be a quite miserable 2 weeks of football. With our squad this is going to be a tough month whoever is in charge and as has been pointed out, if it were possible to get a replacement in place quickly this international break presents the best opportunity for somebody else.

We would not be able to pick up the phone to Mr Ancelotti, Sean Dyche, Tuchel or any of the other names being bandied about and ask them over like ordering a takeaway in, so our best shot at an immediate term replacement would have to be inviting Unsworth to help out.

This would be a huge step up and the pressure and expectations on him would be immense from the off but I don't think anyone would expect miracles within the next month, and in a way that again gives him time to get familiar with, and remould the squad he is inheriting. We then have a reasonable run through to Christmas with the prospect of a transfer window in the new year which he could try and use to target those much needed vacancies in the squad.

Quite simply the prospect of RK being given the rest of the season to try and sort things out is horrific. Even with the bad results there should be some signs of a recovery prospect on the pitch but the body language from the players and RK alike, the total lack of any evident empathy, the lack of purpose and drive demonstrate the complete opposite.

Wayne Rooney's face - forgetting his actual footbal contribution - speaks volumes to me. He is through and through an Evertonian and his evident disappointment and frustration at what is going on is apparent. He can't come out and speak publicly about the malaise but there is an air of resignation about the whole squad and this has to be addressed with urgency. I think maybe the board cannot see it (possible exception BK because I do think he 'knows' the game better than the rest) so they need to listen to and hear the wake up call from players and fans alike. RK must go.

Sadly I think none of the above will transpire and this is going to be a tortuous season to see out. I just hope and pray we stay safe and things can be back on track by August next year. But I shall continue to watch the news hoping to see and hear the announcement most of us want.

Brent Stephens
49 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:22:09
Denis #26 reference to Kenwright's "supposed 'grave illness', and coffins" is insensitive. Whatever we might think of the man.

Rahman Talib
50 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:34:33
'Cactus' can also mean life saving water for those trapped in the desert.
Simon Crosbie
51 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:37:17
I don't know if people realize this but, with the recent dismissals of De Boer from Crystal Palace and Wim Jonker at Wolfsburg, Koeman is the only remaining Dutch manager across all four major European football leagues.

Perhaps like Louis van Gaal, Koeman and coaches are being associated with the decline of Dutch football from the era of expansive total football to a stodgy style, lacking flair, confidence and inventiveness.

My take is that, after its ‘succesful' years Dutch football started to take itself too seriously and became over-refined and less concerned with individual skill. In Australia, the governing body adopted a rigid Dutch system for its elite junior competitions. This occurred in 2009 when Holland, at one stage, reached number three in the Fifa rankings. It has since dropped 26 places. In the same period Australia has dropped 29 places.

The current Everton style appears to lack inspiration and direction – it seems too rigid for individual expression. It seems to reflect a national style and approach that has found itself in the doldrums.

Dave Abrahams
52 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:39:38
Kim (#48) how does Kenwright know the game better than anyone else, he might know the people at Everton better, but football itself?

He knows how to look after himself and his interests that's for sure, his bank balance proves it, especially since he sold some of his shares to Moshiri with another load to come. He's screwed Everton more than helped them.

Rahman Talib
53 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:39:52
If Koeman was smart, he would play Rooney as a sole defensive midfielder in yesterday's game.
Kim Vivian
54 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:54:12
Dave – I meant maybe better than the other board members. He has (I think) probably been a football fan most of his life. I'm leaving his business acumen, for better or worse, out of it.

I was trying to say that Moshiri might just see a bunch of fans chuntering because they're not happy with results. I think Kenwright sees a bigger picture but isn't the assassin we'd like him to be.

Brian Hennessy
55 Posted 02/10/2017 at 09:56:19
The problem with a Cactus is that even when they are gone they leave you with prickly little things that cause you ongoing discomfort.

Can't help but feel that if/when Koeman is sacked (and I hope he is), Klassen and Sigurdsson and the fees paid for them will cause us discomfort for considerable time.

Alan J Thompson
56 Posted 02/10/2017 at 10:40:58
I just wonder what the criteria should be or is being used.

Moyes wasn't wanted as while he, in the main, kept us out of relegation battles he wasn't seen as the man to break us into the big time.

Martinez had a good first season but his inattention to detail saw us in an unacceptable lower half (11th) finish in consecutive seasons. (Some irony in that as it was reported that the Board budgeted for an 11th place finish).

Koeman seems to be outdoing both of them in the rush for the bottom after having funds that Moyes wouldn't have dreamt of in his entire 11 year stay with us.

If results don't turn in our favour then I think that David Unsworth with Joe Royle at his elbow should be given first option thus avoiding any new manager having to settle in. He knows the players (and therefore the faults in their entirety), could recall those on loan he thinks can add something and give the Board adequate time to consider who, if anybody, should have the next opportunity and has at least managed a winning EPL2 team. I don't understand the call for Ferguson to share this position as he doesn't seem to have filled the players with enthusiasm and seems to lack any sort of managerial experience and some consider him to be a charitable Kenwright appointment.

Denis Richardson
57 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:11:44
Brent 49,

Was it not in the press about BK being gravely ill a year or two ago? He's doesn't seem so bad now and it was never actually confirmed what he had (or didn't) have. His recovery also coincidentally ties into him cashing his shares for multiple millions (yes I am a cynic).

Either way, I'm not wishing the guy dead, just saying he has no intention of ever leaving his post as EFC chairman as he's living his own dream. Hence he'll be around until his last breath.

John G Davies
58 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:15:00
He's been to Lourdes.
Paul Saleh
59 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:29:27
I cant see, where we go from here? We don't have a settled formation, even after 14 games this season. Players are being played out of position ( sigurdsson is not a left winger)
We can all see we need a striker, but we look so disjointed, its as if the players don't trust him as they are always getting the blame as Koeman, very rarely , blames himself.
You can give him more time, but do we honestly expect to see anything change,
Brent Stephens
60 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:44:24
Denis "Was it not in the press about BK being gravely ill a year or two ago? He's doesn't seem so bad now and it was never actually confirmed what he had (or didn't) have".

Yes, that's exactly why I'd prefer not to speculate on whether his illness was genuine. We don't know. The two events in close proximity, cashing-in the shares and "his recovery", might not be related. Any "recovery" might be the pressure being taken off being the majority owner. There might have been no significant recovery. All speculation (I guess!).

Denis Richardson
61 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:50:41
Brent - the'pressure' of being a major shareholder .right. For years we were told the club was for sale then independent 3rd parties said that was just window dressing.

Anyway, no need to go over old ground. We can both agree on one thing and that is BKs going no where on the near future.

Brent Stephens
62 Posted 02/10/2017 at 11:53:15
Agree there, Denis!
Anthony Hawkins
63 Posted 02/10/2017 at 12:30:44
@Paul #59 - players are being fielded out of position because there's no one to play in those positions. Koeman either sold or refuses to play our wingers. the team has no width as the midfield is 100% central midfielders.

Whether the dressing room has been lost and the team aren't playing for Koeman or age is catching up but Williams, Jagielka and Baines are not doing it (i'm ignoring Martina for now) and we're struggling to field a recognised striker/goal scorer.

I completely get that Rooney was benched and may be that was to see if the team could play without him? If it was the latter, Koeman 100% fielded the wrong player in that position.

From what I can tell, Koeman has reverted the team to a system that worked well in the mid 90s with 5 at the back including 2 wing backs - 20 years too late!!! Then add the two defensive midfield players and you've got a defensive team with no hit man.
If Koeman wants to have an attempt at saving his job then he has to go 4-4-2 and no f*cking about.

Pickford

Martina(?), Keane, Holgate, Baines

Mirallas, Gueye (DM) ,Ramirez (AM) , Davies

DCL, Niasse

I guarantee the forwards would get plenty of opportunities with that team.

It's so frustrating as there was lots of promise and positivity in pre-season but now abject disappointment.

Andy Meighan
64 Posted 02/10/2017 at 13:08:58
I don't know about cactus but hes fucking clueless!
Paul Holmes
65 Posted 02/10/2017 at 13:30:02
I think some posters on here are missing the point. We have recruited badly and squandered the money on bang average players, so whoever comes in can only work with the same players.

The answer most Everton fans give when asked how we can turn it around is to say they would not know where to start! Now that is a very bad sign for a club that has just spent £150 million.

Dave Abrahams
66 Posted 02/10/2017 at 14:22:41
Kim (54), yes I understand better what you are saying, although John Wood another director has never been none to say anything to anyone about football, Elstrone, another board member was a rugby league supporter, which leaves Mr. Moshiri and his friend with the assassins look, well Moshiri has been following Arsenal for quite a few years, so knows something about success, not sure about his mate, Kenwright says he followed Everton from his days in the Boys Pen, maybe, but I wouldn't believe him if he told me today was Monday, they just roll off his tongue, I just hope someone at Everton has the sense to put things right at the club, and for me that would mean Koeman leaving, and even then I would feel cheated with him getting Brewsters for putting us in the shit.
Derek Knox
67 Posted 02/10/2017 at 14:53:49
This is only my opinion, but I truly believe that Koeman has had long enough.

Let's face it, we have some very good players, and I think nearly everyone on TW could have put a team out on Saturday, to beat Burnley, who are a grafting team, who also collectively, cost less than Siggurdsson alone.

Week in week out, TW'ers put a suggested line up on a post, the one that Koeman goes for, bears little resemblance to any of them.

Like the progressive England managers, they stick with the same players, when it is crying out for change, introduce some new blood, give fringe players a chance!

I think the longer it is left, we will reach a point where we are in a relegation scrap, out of Europa, and both domestic Cups.

Geoff Williams
68 Posted 02/10/2017 at 15:26:09
There appears to be a total lack of unity at Everton, both on and off the field.

Very few people watch the pre-match warm up but I find it very informative. On Sunday the Everton squad was split into the usual two groups, selected team and the subs, and they half-heartedly went through a series of exercises, a bit of grid work before aimlessly kicking balls to one another.

Burnley on the other hand worked together as a match day squad and although there was some similarity with Everton's preparations, Burnley did everything with intensity and purpose. They also did some unopposed ball work. A series of passing movements, getting the ball wide and crossing it for strikes on goal just as Spurs did the other week.

If the board is reluctant to get rid of Koeman then the first team coaches should be shown the door.

Pete Clarke
69 Posted 02/10/2017 at 15:46:02
Dennis. BK is not dead but he sure has been haunting us for what seems an eternity.

I was reading Alex Fergusons book and during the Rooney transfer he sat with BK in a room and all BK could do was cry his fuckin eyes out. Alex Ferguson was looking around the room waiting for someone from you've been framed or something !

As long as this buffoon is at our club we have no chance st success.
Andy Crooks
70 Posted 02/10/2017 at 21:44:13
How many if our team would get in a top four side? None I would say.How many of our squad would fit into a team about to be relegated? A few, I reckon. Martina, the over the hill Baines. Williams, Klassen, Jagielka, Sigurdsson, Niasse, Schneiderlin. All if them would fit into the Villa team that were relegated.
Jim Wilson
71 Posted 02/10/2017 at 21:56:53
Will people stop criticising the players. We have a terrible manager who has caused good players to under perform. He has constantly changed the team and formation which results in players having lack of cohesion with each other, lack of confidence resulting in below par performances.
How anyone can pick on the likes of Baines beggars belief. He just plays for a bad manager who has completely messed up his game and his teams performances. Ask Barkley he will tell you what lack of confidence can do to your game.
Just pick on Koeman, he must go!
Brian Williams
72 Posted 02/10/2017 at 22:08:22
The players aren't without blame. Did Koeaman make Williams give the ball straight to an opposing player which led immediately to xonceding a goal. Did Koeman also make him have a nightmare on Sunday?
Lastly did Koeman force a couple of our midfielders to "hide" behind Burnley players rather than show for a pass from the defenders?
Yes Koeman's got a lot to answer for but the players aren't without fault either.
Eugene Ruane
73 Posted 02/10/2017 at 22:12:18
Koeman is not only a cactus but also a 'juggler', a 'hovercraft' and a 'fireplace.'

In fact (and apologies for the language) I'll go further, he's a 'mirror', an 'elephant' and a 'vacuum.'

Brian Williams
74 Posted 02/10/2017 at 22:13:49
Vacuum? That's a step too far Eugene ffs.
Jim Wilson
75 Posted 02/10/2017 at 22:27:30
Brian
'Did Koeaman make Williams give the ball straight to an opposing player which led immediately to xonceding a goal. Did Koeman also make him have a nightmare on Sunday?
Lastly did Koeman force a couple of our midfielders to "hide" behind Burnley players rather than show for a pass from the defenders?'

My answer is YES. This is exactly what happens when you have a bad manager and your confidence has gone. Players make mistakes, players hide. At least Williams isn't hiding.
The 45m star signed to replace Barkley who was a dead ball specialist asked Rooney to take a corner at one point.
The players are completely drained of confidence and their performances are suffering because of the manager. And when you are nervous mistakes are made. Koeman must go,
NOW!

Paul Ferry
77 Posted 03/10/2017 at 05:02:01
Harsh on Sigurdsson Andy mate - 70.

The rest I agree with.

Davies would interest the top 4 Andy. So would Ross. Keane maybe.

I do get your point mate!

Andy Crooks
78 Posted 03/10/2017 at 19:38:07
Eugene Ruane, Koeman is not a fireplace. It is offensive and you should withdraw your comment. I suspect the term you were searching for was slow cooker. However, you have form for this sort of stuff.

Moyes, a pencil case? Martinez a Playtex living Bra?

Ray Said
79 Posted 03/10/2017 at 20:15:59
In other news, The Guardian is reporting that Kroenke has made an offer for Usmanov's shares in Arsenal. Let's hope he takes the offer and follows Moshiri up here.
Rudi Coote
80 Posted 03/10/2017 at 21:40:48
Eugene... you forgot "lousy manager".

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