Everton will take a two-goal advantage into the second leg of their Europa League play-off against the Croatians thanks to goals by Michael Keane and Idrissa Gueye
The Blues built up some irresistible momentum in the first half and took the lead with half an hour gone when Keane rose highest to head home Leighton Baines's cross.
Gueye doubled the advantage in first-half stoppage time with a confidently taken goal off Wayne Rooney's pass and thanks to Jordan Pickford and excellent displays at the back by Keane and Ashley Williams, Ronald Koeman's men held off intermittent pressure from Hajduk in the second half to avoid conceding an away goal going into the second leg.
Ademola Lookman made his first start in a side that also included Cuco Martina and Kevin Mirallas and the Blues made a good start without really threatening beyond a succession of crosses into the box until Davy Klaassen came within an inch of connecting with a low ball from the right.
The lively Lookman saw an early shot deflect behind while Vlasić screwed a tame effort wide at the other end before Morgan Schneiderlin picked up an early yellow card for a late tackle on Kožulj.
Klaassen and Baines sliced efforts well over the crossbar until another corner off a Martina cross led to Everton taking the lead.
The ball was kept alive by Baines after the initial set-piece was cleared and with the help of Klaassen he surged back into the box and clipped a teasing cross to the back post where Keane headed home with half an hour gone.
The game was held up shortly afterwards, however, when it all went off in the away end with seats and punches flying towards stewards. Play resumed four minutes later with the Hadjuk section heavily guarded by police.
Everton remained on the front foot and a great move carved the visiting defence open after Klaassen had seized on a slip not far outside the box. The Dutchman fed Rooney who played Gueye in superbly to tuck a smart finish inside the far post.
Vlasić had the Croatians' first shot on target in first-half stoppage time but Pickford was equal to the effort.
And after Hajduk had tested the Blues' keeper from distance again, Rooney had a great chance to make it 3-0. The forward was played in perfectly by Klaassen but his attempt to place a shot past the 'keeper was saved.
Gylfi Sigurdsson was paraded before his new fans before kick-off
Rooney had a decent chance early in the second half as well when Martina was released into space on the overlap and he crossed to the middle but the forward's header drifted wide of the far post.
Everton's tempo understandably lessened as the second half progressed and they tried to hit Rooney's runs off the last defender, the veteran unfortunately not finding the referee's assistant in charitable mood.
Hajduk, meanwhile, kept probing and when a foul on Gueye wasn't given, Ohandza found himself free to run at the home defence and force a save from Pickford who palmed his effort away to safety.
Klaassen's evening came to an end with just over an hour gone when Calvert-Lewin was introduced in his place but it was Hajduk who started to carry the greater threat, Hamza firing wide after dispossessing Gueye 25 yards from goal.
Everton lost their way a little in the final quarter of an hour and Pickford twice had to beat the ball away to deny substitute Erceg from the angle and then Momolla from distance.
Lookman had a late effort blocked as the Blues briefly threatened to score a third but the score remained at 2-0 until the final whistle.
Kick-off: 8.05pm, Thursday 17 August, 2017
Everton: Pickford, Martina, Keane, Williams, Baines, Schneiderlin (Davies 46'), Gueye, Klaassen (Calvert-Lewin 62'), Lookman, Rooney, Mirallas (Besic 76')
Subs not used: Stekelenburg, Jagielka, Lennon, Holgate
Full details: ToffeeWeb Match page
Reader Comments (219)
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1 Posted 17/08/2017 at 19:31:23
2 Posted 17/08/2017 at 19:59:18
3 Posted 17/08/2017 at 20:05:23
4 Posted 17/08/2017 at 20:07:35
Serious though, why Gueye and Schneiderlin in the same team? I just hope Koeman has instructed them to pass forward. Especially Schneiderlin.
Let's hope Davies does not suffer because of this explosion of midfield players. And lets hope tonight that Williams and Baines can turn back the years , and keep up to pace.
Klaassen and Rooney are also an interesting pairing. It's an interesting team. It's an interesting set up. I don't always think it necessary to go with width. Teams can also be opened up through the middle. But let's hope that Mirallas and especially Lookman shine.
It's time folks. For what its worth it's, 4-0 to the Toffees. Rooney to score first. COYBs...
5 Posted 17/08/2017 at 20:29:48
6 Posted 17/08/2017 at 20:54:37
Gana having another blinder and running things in the middle. Schneiderlin knocking the ball around nicely. Rooney looking like the classy footballer he is. That turn where he was fouled was footballing porn... And the turn and defence splitting pass for Gana's goal sublime.
Enjoyable to watch. Nobody having a bad game and Klaassen showing his game..
Lookman needs bigger shorts.
7 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:00:52
Morgan Schneiderlin SUPERB! The way he is spraying the ball around from deep to either flank with pin point accuracy a stark contrast to his summer performances to date.
Klaassen as well putting in his best performance since joining. Instrumental in both goals and nearly on the score sheet himself.
Rooney showing so much guile.
The whole team playing at a different tempo to anything they have shown thus far. Pressing hard all over the pitch. Quicker, slicker passing from everyone.
Oh! And Martina is not the yard dog some label him.
8 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:03:33
9 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:05:58
Round pegs in round holes, Schneiderlin and Klaassen showing better form and a bit more of their capabilities.
Keep it going and finish these off now. They have a good record at home apparently. If you're travelling take care of yourselves.
10 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:06:07
13 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:44:19
14 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:45:06
15 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:58:29
16 Posted 17/08/2017 at 21:58:47
17 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:02:03
18 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:03:35
19 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:07:51
20 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:08:00
21 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:10:34
Koeman would have known they would press forward to get that vital away goal and sloppy passing gave them the impetus to have a go.
Would have liked to have seen Lennon on for the last 20 minutes in place of Lookman to stretch Split and keep them more at their own end.
Everton sitting back to contain is not good to watch even against teams like this.
22 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:10:55
23 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:11:53
24 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:12:02
That is, if they don't get banned for their fans behaviour, a disgrace really, and to crown it, their players went to their section at the end and applauded them.
I watched, or tried to watch via youtube, but it kept stopping, but when on was crystal clear picture-wise.
25 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:12:48
I hope I never have to listen to those two commentators again.
Great to keep a clean sheet in Europe which you'd like to think will get us over the line.
26 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:13:10
27 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:13:37
28 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:14:35
29 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:14:46
The formation remained largely unaltered. There was constant movement and pressing throughout the whole 90 minutes. Nobody had a bad game. Many had very good games.
Passing was quicker and crisper, with a wide range from short to long.
There was passion on the park - Rooney giving it out large to all the team after a sloppy passage of play. Young Pickford bollocking Rooney for an unnecessary crossfield pass that put the defence under pressure.
The keeper time and again showing a good starting position whenever the visitors attacked and pulling off two fine saves. His catch and instant volleyed pass to DC-L a delight to behold, displaying what some of us anticipated from him: quick transition from defence to attack.
The 3 players that came on knew they had to perform to impress to try and earn a starting berth. Plenty of others in the squad who can be rotated in.
Four competitive games, no goals conceded.
This is just the start.
30 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:15:07
31 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:15:17
Baines, Keane, Gana and Schneiderlin all superb first half.
Klaassen and Rooney are showing an understanding, whilst Martina was good.
That's 4 competitive matches and 4 clean sheets, all wins.
We can't ask for much better than that for a foundation to work from.
33 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:18:19
Lookman had acres at time but checked and went back put us on a flat footed position. Keane excellent tonight and Pickford solid and assured. I enjoyed 45 mins; we will need 90 against Man City to get a point or narrow win.
34 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:18:27
The keeper shows a lot of authority for a kid.
Centre backs solid. Midfield worked hard and kept the ball well for the majority of the game. Gana? Some player this lad.
Klaassen getting used to the pace as the game went on, clever in the last 30 yards.
Rooney, tired but full of class.
And a mention for Cuco Martina. Be decent playing with a back three as a wing back, very good distribution tonight.
Signs of progress were obvious to me.
35 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:20:19
They came into it a bit in the last quarter but it's very unusual to get a trouble free 90 minutes.
Overall a step up from the Ruzomberok and Stoke performances.
36 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:20:24
37 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:20:45
38 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:21:30
One fault for me was the lack of striking options. We had a lot of possession tonight and good positions but I don't recall either of our two strikers testing the keeper. Wayne is more of a withdrawn striker and DCL is still very raw. Get Siggurdsson and a proper striker in that team and I think we'll be looking pretty tasty.
39 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:21:41
40 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:22:08
Again impressed with Pickford what a signing he is turning out to be, probably sticks his gloves in super glue before the game because every shot seemed to stick to his hands with ease, some fantastic saves towards the end as well. With a keeper like that the whole defence will feel confident that if they so make a little mistake there is a quality guy behind him who will most of the time make the save.
Best keeper in a blue shirt since the legendary Southall.
Decent first half job done. 1 away goal and they will need to score 4 with Gylfi coming in and Sandro maybe fit should be good.
More games for the team to gel together.
Opposition wasn't too bad quality either that Barry fella looks decent going forward for them.
41 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:23:33
42 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:24:04
43 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:24:24
44 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:25:46
45 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:27:14
He set the tempo of the game for us. Gave us width. Took people on. He was sensational first half and changed the team from last week.
He lost the ball a lot in the second half but this was his first game of the season so he's bound to be rusty. Plus he's still very inexperienced. We need to start him every week and watch him develop into a great
46 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:34:17
47 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:34:37
48 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:39:00
49 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:39:51
I just hope the next four league games where we travel to United, Chelsea and Spurs as well as hosting Spurs go well in terms of performance if not result, as well as the return in Croatia of course.
50 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:40:20
Overall the performance was very good and Martina did well which hopefully shows the 'one of the worst Everton player ever' comments to be the guff that they are.
Plenty of positives but also some worries too; it is fantastic that we are looking so solid but it is at the expense of an edge up front. Also, plenty of players being static when we have the ball and I'm not sure that is worse than constantly being offside.
Koeman is setting a bit of a worrying trend by constantly leaving Rooney on the pitch no matter how knackered and sloppy he gets. However if Keane and Pickford are there to pick up the pieces, it is not all bad what a cracking pair of signings they look to be.
51 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:40:34
52 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:42:46
53 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:43:23
54 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:44:33
55 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:46:49
He also came very close to nabbing a goal himself, after making the sort of well-timed run into the box that too often failed to materialise from our midfielders last season.
56 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:49:06
57 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:49:22
But Ian Lloyd doesn't cut it I'm afraid. :-/
58 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:50:04
59 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:51:16
The quality of the passing, both short rapid passing interchanges, and long-range balls switching from one side to the other, was immense.
On that performance, we look solid, and with some clever football. If I had to choose a MotM, it would be Keane. Total quality.
60 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:51:31
61 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:51:42
Schneiderlin looked a lot better, whilst Keane, Gana and Pickford all looked good. Klaassen struggled but did create the chances. He's still settling so no panic from me. Nearly 3 assists isn't a bad place to be even if he gave the ball away cheaply on occasions. Even Martina played well.
Nothing for boo boys here, but we needed 3 to put this game to bed. Will be tricky away.
62 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:53:48
63 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:54:02
64 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:57:58
I bet the poor lad wishes he could wear a blue shirt rather than his current kit which looks like something cadged out of Mr Blobby's washing basket.
Shocking kit aside, he has looked very impressive so far. The fact he's not shy in handing out a bit of an ear bashing to more experienced players is another encouraging sign that we might have finally scored our first fully rounded keeper since Nigel Martyn called time on his career at the club
65 Posted 17/08/2017 at 22:58:31
66 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:03:14
I was wrong, it wasn't their day off.
67 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:09:47
Class act and only 23 to think there is probably another 15years of football in this lad he is only going to get better and better, be in the England team soon miles better than Hart.
Thought it was madness paying that kind of money for Pickford and reading the Sunderland fans comments about him was very good they was all gutted about him leaving even though they was getting a record price for a British keeper.
Decent game tho good moments, imagine having Lukaku in this team...
68 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:10:13
Gueye is a quite superb player. One of the best buys we have ever made and if he can add clever goals like the one tonight then he will become truly great.
I thought Williams was excellent. He and Keane have struck up an understanding, each covered for the other tonight on the two occasions they made errors.
Pickford too, of course.
All round, I was very pleased.
69 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:12:32
Job well done. On tele next week so here's hoping they don't get an early goal cos I've given up drinking until September and not sure that the tension and angst would be good for me.
55 years a true blue but forever hoping for the best but expecting and fearing the worst!
70 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:13:12
However, only saw last 35 mins of game. Looked much better than 3 previous performances but there were lapses in concentration. The oppo showed enough to rue not getting a third goal tonight; if they score first and early in the return leg then it could get a bit tense. Hopefully Gylfi and Sandro will add to our threat and keep the tie in our control.
71 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:15:18
The selection was correct and harmonious, despite my eyebrow curling excessively at DCL's omission at CF.
Each player played at the right tempo from the off, pressed and stayed high up the pitch so much the crux in this style of play.
Opposition were limited but did have a danger about them.
The players scrutinised heavily so far did themselves a favour by looking to attack. Martina, is athletic and forward looking, this game suited him.
Schniederlin played more forward passes today than in all previous games and Klaassen's touches came off today. Such a clever player.
Second half was adequate but the players not the Manager get the evil eye. Playing at the better tempo for a decent 20minutes would have sealed the tie, so important with a heavy and difficult league schedule.
The last platitude goes to Rooney, he makes others better. Nice one lad.
72 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:19:02
The match, well I was pretty happy. The passing was good, there was plenty of width. Martina, so far, has proved Koeman right. I saw him directing things a lot, communicating with both Mirallas and Lookman, plus guiding others where to put the ball, plus he looked fine defensively and going forward, he made some excellent runs.
Keane and Williams were very solid, Baines past it nah! We lost a bit of shape when Schneiderlin went off, but that was to be expected, we may miss Gareth Barry in these situations. Klaassen looked decent, but what is obvious, a target man is needed. Obvious to all I think.
Anyways, happy with a 2-0 win, and in Pickford we may have a gem!
The next game will be a real test!
73 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:25:30
Klaassen was good at times, struggled at others, but he's got a football brain. Gana was excellent, as were Pickford and Keane.
And decent games from Cuco and Williams.
I think Sigurdsson will fit in.
74 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:28:26
Besic comes on.
He has been unlucky with injuries, mind you looks like he has been unlucky with his barber as well.
75 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:28:45
Frightening really because if anything was caught on CCTV you wouldn't be able to tell who was who because they looked identical.
I'd have serious reservations about going over there.
76 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:29:52
There is a lot of talent in the squad and Sigurdsson will make us even better, tough games to come, but I think we'll be OK.
77 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:31:33
78 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:34:32
Fair does to Williams, a rock tonight (can he really keep that up??). Martina did well going forward (though defensively suspect).
Just loved Pickford, and Lookman first half (they paid him more attention second half). Keane, Gana, impressive; Schneids' passes amongst other things. Baines solid and now belting forward again. Rooney a leader.
Am I allowed to be a happy-clapper tonight?
79 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:36:39
I still think that DCL and Lookman struggled at times. Both could do with a season on loan in the Championship, in my opinion. But this was a very positive night, all in all. We should be able to get at least a draw over in Croatia, which will see us through...
80 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:38:22
81 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:38:59
He looked cheesed and with good reason too.
He was a real bright spark tonight and a tiring Lookman or the ineffective Rooney should have gone before him.
Anyone else get the feeling that Rooney is undroppable/un-substitutable right now though?
82 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:39:52
83 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:42:25
I think Rooney being undroppable may have something to do with him being superb on the pitch. I think you're letting confirmation bias get the better of you.
84 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:47:55
85 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:49:57
As for Klaassen, I think he has shown very little in the first four games - and unless he improves quickly then I can see him as our expensive bench-warmer for the big games this season.
86 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:50:53
Glad Koeman's not happy, because that game had shades of Sporting Lisbon, from a few years ago tonight.
87 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:51:01
88 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:52:02
Thought we played really well in the first half but we tired in the second half.
Everyone looking forward to next Thursday night in Split?
89 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:55:29
90 Posted 17/08/2017 at 23:57:38
91 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:00:23
92 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:07:36
93 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:09:52
But Hajduk Split were really dreadful way poorer than the Slovak side from the previous round.
94 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:10:19
I thought the refereeing and linesmanship was very poor, and inconsistent, they got away with a lot of fouls, unpenalised, and some of the off-side decisions were clearly not.
Should have enough to take over there, that is if they don't get banned before that.
95 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:10:34
As for the match a great first half, said before the Game still unsure about Klaassen but he played well tonight, Gueye was everywhere and as for Pickford, so calm and one hell of a goalkeeper we have there.
96 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:15:24
Involved in both goals with clever football brain + additional chance for Rooney and nearly scored himself
We have a player called Barkley that gets criticised for not doing the simple things, not getting his head up, not playing the first time pass.
We get a player that does it and he gets criticised for it?!?!! Amazing
97 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:15:58
The performance itself was typical Koeman: great for one half and a bit shite the rest of it and could have easily let Split back into it. We could have easily made this a lot easier for ourselves but his negative tactics dictated otherwise. But hey, he's spent zillions so let's be kind to him.
Oh and by the way, to all you Martina bashers, the lad was outstanding tonight more so than Klaassen, Gueye (who,goal apart, his forward passing is atrocious), and Williams who looked shell-shocked the last 20 but I thought Schneiderlin was great for an hour, spraying balls all over the park. Let's see more of the same on Monday, hey.
98 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:17:35
Lookman in particular just needs to learn to be aware of what's happening around him as he tends to trip over himself when it's time to release the ball, but no complaints, just advice.
Calvert-Lewin is a willing runner but again, he could look up a bit and see what's on, advice again. I thought that Klaassen played well, probably his best game. Gana - what price now? We had plenty of good deliveries into the box and more goals wouldn't have flattered us.
I think that the high tempo game was great, but not surprised that it fizzled out a bit so early in the season. It is obvious that the team aren't fit enough yet to keep it up for 90 minutes.
All-in-all, if we were away and lost the first leg 2-0 we would be gutted, and terrified of losing a goal going for it. That's the position that Split are in now. They aren't Barça and they are not going to swarm all over us in the second leg. We will see the team being able to keep up the tempo as the season unfolds, and eventually it should be for 90 minutes. I reckon that we are well capable of pinching a goal and that will end the tie.
99 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:20:33
On top of that he is new to the country, league and team! What do people expect?
100 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:22:25
101 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:30:04
Just throw them out?
These aren't your average English halfwit wannabe hooligans.
The vast majority of thos Split supporters (and I use the term loosely) were part of a very well organized quazi military group who have no respect for law and order and no fear of our very civilized police force.
What they're about has nowt to do with football and throwing them out is a lot easier said than done.
Good decision not to go. Anyone that does wants their head reading!
102 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:36:02
Sorry Brian, I didn't express myself well enough, I meant throw them out of the competition, not just physically throw them out! As an ex-boxer/kick-boxer (very ex) I know it ain't that easy to deal with a bunch of nutters no matter how trained you are. It also taught me how hard I wasn't, especially when you fight some of those little Thai guys !!!!!
Sorry, I really wasn't be flippant! I really wasn't.
103 Posted 17/08/2017 at 00:36:16
Lookman still raw ran at them, harried and chased linked up well with Martina who also had a good game and generlly was a pain in their side the whole night though he did tire in the last 30 mins and was more sloppy in losing posession, most of the evening he had two or three opposing players trying to close him down. What this does is creates more space for other players to run into or exploit.
Klaassen is a very intelligent and skillful player whose reading of the game and the other players was very good showing why he was brought to the club. The fact he was involved with both goals with good closing down and deft touches, set up Rooney with what should have been a third goal before half time and was inches away from getting on the end of a cross from Martina to score in the first meant for some he played poorly??? Give me strength.
104 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:46:34
It's the only punishmemt that'll work.
They don't look on the game as a game at all.
With them it's nationalistic and political.
It's a war to them, and that's not me being dramatic. You can't reason with em because their beliefs and hatred are too ingrained so you have to just ostricise them.
I saw and watched a lot of them in town today and they weren't on a European jolly like we would be, they were on a mission and they weren't relaxed and enjoyiing themselves they were tense and angry.
Strange to see and frightening in a way.
105 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:51:02
Absolutely love the arrogance with Pickford. He knows he's good and one save where he just batted it away and looked as if to say 'seriously? You expect to beat me?' Great to see.
Not sure why Klaassen is getting stick either. Thought he did well, linking play up and being a nuisance.
And a special mention to Martina. I absolutely bagged the signing numerous times but thought he did well tonight, especially going forward. Best game I've seen him play (including a few times at Southampton that is).
Declan (#93) But Hajduk Split were really dreadful way poorer than the Slovak side from the previous round. I thought Split were okay, certainly better than our previous opponents. Least they had a go at scoring!
David (#91) Why is Mirallas always taken off Because he was typical Mirallas. Does okay for 5 mins and goes missing for 20. Right sub if you ask me to make sure we don't concede.
106 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:53:40
They do appear to have genuine class which we have lacked in both positions for quite some time now.
And at 23 and 24 years old respectively, playing in positions where it is widely considered you don't reach your peak until late twenties / early thirties, the potential in these two lads is frightening!
107 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:56:19
No worries mate, my fault for not being clear enough. The thing is any supporter shouldn't be put off going abroad to what is essentially is a game because he or she is worried they'll get their head kicked in. If that is a genuine worry, then that team should be banned. Passion is passion, violence and intimidation is just violence and intimidation. I just don't understand the mentality of going to another country, kicking off, getting arrested etc. and I never want to understand it. I am home after living abroad for 16 years in many different countries, why would you want to get arrested in one? Weird! But what you say about ingrained hatred is so true, especially in the Balkan states. I worked in Azerbaijan and was amazed at the hatred logical and intelligent people had towards Armenia. This hatred then can be directed towards anyone who is not in your 'tribe'. worrying and sad!
That's why I love the sports I did, and still do to a much lesser extent, mid 40s now. No matter how big and tough you are, you'd meet your match. No friends involved, no booze, just you and the other guy. It certainly sorts people out and keeps egos well in check!
A bit of levity needed. I thought we played well, and was also pleased with Koeman's lack of satisfaction at the second half display! It bodes well.
108 Posted 18/08/2017 at 01:13:45
Atmosphere from home support better than it has been for a while but the team did play well first half. I'd of liked to if seen Lennon come on for Lookman second half. And I think also the linesman had a good game and our forward line need to wake up. Very poor
Martina had a much better game today. Defensively not great but he is a natural RB that likes to go forward. He looked confident which is s good sign. Pickford is still to be beaten. (Should l have said that)
109 Posted 18/08/2017 at 01:17:34
Anyone going to Split needs stocking up on gum shields, body armour and "run fucking fast" trainers. Fuck sake, it was like being back in the 70's.
110 Posted 18/08/2017 at 01:20:32
Anyway, moving on from that, first half was very enjoyable, seemed like things are starting to click into place, players finding each other without looking.
Second half we simply took our foot off the gas I thought.
Pickford though, absolute gem! Midway through the second half he picked out Mirralis out wide right in Splits own half with a peach of a ball, almost Beckham like, we've sure got a goodun there!
Onwards and upwards fellow blues.
111 Posted 18/08/2017 at 01:24:17
Were some players taken off too early, were some players taken off too late, or not at all. Were the replacements the right ones.
Was there a collective; 2-0 up - job done, foot off the pedal?
All or part of the above - Something else?
Or Is Koeman only responsible for the Halves that go right.
112 Posted 18/08/2017 at 01:41:57
'Or Is Koeman only responsible for the Halves that go right.' Absolutely not! I'm the first on here moaning about Koeman if things go wrong with silly tactics or selections or subs. Tonight I think Koeman did well overall and liked his comments after the game too.
113 Posted 18/08/2017 at 02:02:52
114 Posted 18/08/2017 at 02:18:37
115 Posted 18/08/2017 at 02:21:54
Koeman starting Lookman was brave - it demonstrates, once again, his readiness to trust in youth. It's a testament to us, and to our future, that we finished an essential game with a 21 year old, a 20 year old, and two 19 year olds on the pitch.
The first half was very good - the second less so. Perhaps it was the break that changed things, or our a change in our tactics or there's. It could have been 2-1 but then it could have been 3-0 too. Martina's performance was positive; he put in several excellent crosses.
It's encouraging, although we are heading into a tough week - We play arguably the best team in the league away on Monday, are away in Croatia on Thursday, and then play Chelsea at home on the Sunday. It gives next to no preparation time for the Thursday and Sunday games. I was not, and am not, optimistic about City away, but I'm more hopeful after that. I'm excited for Chelsea at home though - I think we can, and arguably should, beat them. I just hope that this Thursday football doesn't impact too negatively on our league form - 3 games in 6 days is a little insane, especially given the quality of Chelsea and City. Rotation will be necessary - I'd stick Sandro in from the off in Croatia and bench Rooney.
116 Posted 18/08/2017 at 02:30:39
117 Posted 18/08/2017 at 02:34:09
118 Posted 18/08/2017 at 03:05:11
I can't think of a much harder 6 days tbh - it will be a real test.
119 Posted 18/08/2017 at 03:13:51
120 Posted 18/08/2017 at 03:19:13
Koeman got it right, the side had balance, an attacking balance given the opposition, unlike the previous round, were it was way too defensive.
Rooney as the only recognised CF did stay high up the field and again , showed so much craft and nous around the box. For those who think he might be used sparingly or rotated in and out, Koeman aint dropping him ever. Worth noting he has always appeared to gain in sharpness from constant action.
One good debating point was Lookman, to my eye, not ready for the Premier league, its just too dynamic for him. Too often ponderous with the ball, but in tandem with a right back gave him time and space and did create opening for an improving Martina.
If Koeman gets it right, he should blood him consistently in the EPL, and maybe he's a quick study and might make a thrust into the first team.
Martina can go for and sees some decent things but, even tonight though was poor at defending. Cups only please Ron.
121 Posted 18/08/2017 at 03:44:44
Asking people to rewatch the game so that they can agree with what you believe to be true is a bit annoying - like others might have been duped by only watching the game once, or maybe missed some of the subtleties that only the truly enlightened like you are able to see.
Klaassen is not contributing anything like what I want him to contribute or believed he would contribute. He may have decent movement off the ball I should hope so, he is a Dutch international and former captain of Ajax but his use of the ball has been lacklustre since he signed, including the game against Hajduk Split. He needs to improve. Quickly.
122 Posted 18/08/2017 at 03:45:00
.. he's shoved off the ball too easily, the ball is a hot potato when he receives it. Things can only get better in that position.
Errrm. He was involved in both goals. Without his little touch I doubt Baines would have got the ball back for the cross for the first. And single handedly harassing their player, nicking their ball and feeding Rooney for the second. Worked his arse off as well throughout the 60 mins he was on for.
If he's useless, as you seem to suggest, how many chances did we make without him after he was subbed?
I'm not sure we were watching the same game. Baffling.
123 Posted 18/08/2017 at 05:19:42
He took up some great positions, made clever forward runs, and put a number of brilliant balls into the box. Could have had five assists on another day.
If Kenny had put in that sort of attacking performance, we wouldn't hear the end of it!
He's clearly not the donkey we all thought he was is he?
124 Posted 18/08/2017 at 05:46:26
Jamie, Cuco's definitely not a donkey, but not a flying winger either... excellent touches and crosses, but won't beat anybody to the byline off the dribble. And defensively his positioning is excellent, but he can't tackle. At all. Solid player, certainly not our RB of the future but has contributed two games in a row.
And James #105, full respects for holding your hand up on Martina.
125 Posted 18/08/2017 at 05:47:04
We are starting to see partnerships forming , the new lads all looked decent tonight , and most encouraging was (and hear me out) seeing look an get a start , and Besic and DCL coming on . We are finally in a position to utilise a bit of squad rotation , add Gylfi S and there is more depth and quality - if we get a striker in , again we are stronger . The lads on loan are going well (Dowell is basically in line for the key to the city of Nottingham, and the Makems are drooling over Browning.) I would like another CB in - Step forward Chris Smalling, but A striker and cover on the left is more pressing . All in all an encouraging display , because it's not so long ago (Martinez era) that our two goal lead would have been undone with a scruffy 93rd minute goal from the visitors leading to the inevitable one nil defeat away .
Regarding Lookman , I noticed he tends to square a player up, then slow (or stop completely) before taking them on , he does this a fair bit , and that means he's relying on pace over two or three yards , and body strength to go past his marker. If he was trying to beat these same players when at a run (or at least carrying momentum, he'd get a lot more joy .
126 Posted 18/08/2017 at 06:00:01
I suspect Koeman will put Holgate back in against Man City though as he is much more solid in defence.
We'll see though!
127 Posted 18/08/2017 at 06:58:31
Can he continue to contribute at a top level for a significant part of the season, once the initial "rush" of his return wears off? That's going to be a big question for us especially now we have Sigurdsson.
128 Posted 18/08/2017 at 07:00:54
129 Posted 18/08/2017 at 07:03:24
130 Posted 18/08/2017 at 07:13:31
131 Posted 18/08/2017 at 07:51:18
132 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:14:39
133 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:30:15
I was pleasantly surprised with how good we looked in that first half. Schneiderlin was excellent. Klaassen looked a lot better than Tobias Linderoth to this viewer (he was compared to him on the Live Forum).
Rooney showed glimpses of class and even Martina looked useful. Williams and Mirallas had good games too. Keane and Pickford look excellent acquisitions. Gueye was everywhere and was my MotM.
There were lots to be encouraged about. We took our foot off the pedal a bit in the second half and were frustratedly getting caught offside too often. I don't think we were ever threatened though and looked solid at the back. I liked it when Pickford berated Rooney for that wayward pass. At last, it looks like we have some leaders on the pitch.
Just hope we can get a good striker in before the deadline (still not convinced by Calvert-Lewin yet) and I think we need another centre half.
134 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:33:47
135 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:36:50
Martina is my surprise package to date, Morgan - best game I've seen him play for us, hooked to protect that yellow, Lookman great first half but frustrating in the second half losing possession to much - I think he should have been taken off instead of Mirallas.
D C-L looking promising but needs more time. Hes a big strong lad and on a couple of occasions (eg after that ball out from Pickford) I would like to have seen him get his head down and go more direct for goal a la Lukaku. Besic looks like one of their fans but brings bite to the pitch. Would like to see him given more game time.
I didn't see a bad performance from any of our lads last night. Optimistic for a point on Monday
All in all a pleasing evening bar the interruption.
If you thought that trouble was bad - wait for the world cup. If you haven't already seen it check the BBC Russian Hooligan Army documentary. Compelling and Frightening.
(Russian media portray this as fake BBC film making, btw.)
Check out that documentary.
136 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:58:39
Of course, a couple of lads spending some days in Moscow is not something to get hooligans in action, and some thousand of England fans in a World Cup is something different. But we were surprised how friendly and easy-going everything was.
137 Posted 18/08/2017 at 08:59:38
Of course he was.
138 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:05:56
I'm all for setting the bar high in what we expect to see from the players providing they are realistic expectations and criticism of any of the players when it's warranted. I've slated Scheiderlin and Martina on previous showings this season in other threads along with many others and am happy to eat humble pie as they both played very well yesterday.
I can save a slice for you if you like?
139 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:11:13
Overall, I thought our performance was very impressive, we are looking a skillful and high-pressing side, just need to develop that for a whole game.
140 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:13:41
Anyway, what did you think? Did you think his assessment was wrong? I personally felt what he said was correct and didn't have a problem with any of it. It was all reasonable, made sense and an accurate description of what went on.
141 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:16:21
142 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:16:42
The day of the game will be the only risk as emotions will run high for them. Otherwise the country and people are fantastic. Split fans have seen themselves as being victimised and are fighting against corruption in football, well worth a read.
143 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:22:40
Because he is relatively small for a keeper. he can get down to shots near the ground. I saw Harry Kane recently on the box talking about how he always tried to keep his shots near the deck since it made it harder for the keeper.
A further bonus is Jordan's distribution of the ball. One kick out to the right wing last night was pretty special.
If he continues as he is, the problem we will have is keeping this guy.
144 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:27:06
145 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:27:37
I thought it was a lot better in terms of dominace but again we had to thank the keeper for giving us breathing space going into their place.
I won't pretend we were not looking better last night and stronger but I won't pretend it wasn't good enough 2nd half and we don't work goal keepers enough.
146 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:32:28
147 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:39:02
Pickford and Keane are great buys and how we got them ahead of the top 6 teams is remarkable. Davy was crucial for both goals and Baines had a much better game, possibly because he had MIrallas in front of him who also had an excellent first half.
But a word for Martina- took ridiculous, almost hysterical criticism from some posters on here when he signed and most likely those posters had never or only rarely seen him play. I thought he had a very good game last night and he showed why Ron signed him. He may or may not be the answer on Monday against City- I haven't seen enough of him to know how he will cope with a more defensive role- but he showed ability last night and put in some of the best crosses I have seen in a long time. If Rom had been playing he'd have scored a few from those!
148 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:44:12
Chris #47, stick to the stats. I watched the game, formed an opinion, never said he was shite.
Paul #65, I agree completely with you but you're obviously talking shite. Didn't you read Chris's post?
149 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:44:38
150 Posted 18/08/2017 at 09:52:57
151 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:16:18
152 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:23:22
153 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:23:43
154 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:24:24
Klaassen has not yet come to terms with his team mates and the English game. He will need time.
155 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:50:27
I recall a cup game at Goodison (v Spurs / early 70's). It kicked off behind the Park End goal and the police legend that was "Blackbeard" went over the wall, truncheon out, to sort it out. No placating the troublemakers.
Could have done with him last night.
156 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:52:52
We have all witnessed a great individual performance in our time of watching football. Big Dunc v Man U, Fellaini v City, Drogba v Us many a time etc etc.
Nothing I have seen has come anywhere near them performances yet but like we all know the season has just started and players are finding their way.
Reading comments of 'he is class' about anyone but Rooney at this point to me is beyond the hype people moan about.
We haven't played class opposition yet so how anyone can be in this bracket yet is impossible to me.
I first post without reading a comment mate I don't really need anyone telling me somebody was class or how they played. You'd have to be a really really lovely person to use class after 3 awkward games.
I am happy with Keane so far but I didn't forget he could have cost us a goal last night. Or Rooney.
I can't decide how anyone else will think but my feeling has always been, how does it benefit anyone to not keep things in perspective.
For years now I have heard our deluded rivals tell me about Class and this is our year.
All that class has never got them the silver they want though has it?
Thats why liked Koemans view, honesty is key. And guarantee, ( or as you can see) now he has said that, there will be far less people worried about sharing their 2nd half view on here.
157 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:56:51
It does sound like, as you say, the majority of Split fans are a decent bunch, just a few mindless idiots who want to cause trouble.
I guess it's just going to have to be one of those European away games when we need to keep a low profile.
158 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:59:15
159 Posted 18/08/2017 at 10:59:21
Klaassen is starting to show more each game, Pickford and Keane look class acts. Gana as good as ever, Rooney still has it; Martina is not as bad as many are making out but roll on Seamus! Still not convinced about Williams, Morgans absence in the 2nd half was the difference I think. Lookman faded after an hour but looked lively, causing problems before that. Should have been 4 but could have been 2-1.
All-in-all there's a steady improvement in each game. Need a target man though.
160 Posted 18/08/2017 at 11:44:01
And his persistence to get around the opposition for the second ball led to the second goal. He's not a hard player but he has shown enough to press and fight for the ball. He will certainly come good.
161 Posted 18/08/2017 at 11:47:07
162 Posted 18/08/2017 at 11:57:02
We never went in the chippie mate, walked past it though, if you saw a girl with "Day" on her shirt it was probably us, we mainly milled around the fans zone and club shop before the game so she could take it all in. She can't wait to go back.
163 Posted 18/08/2017 at 12:30:05
The league moves on so fast and good players from 5 years back are only average now.
He mostly kept it simple last night but nothing dynamic enough.
164 Posted 18/08/2017 at 12:30:24
165 Posted 18/08/2017 at 12:39:49
We were going to visit Split but were told it is mainly an industrial port, so we took the ferry to Dubrovnik instead.
The island would have been a great base and the ferry would get you to Split about two hours before kick off !! I am a useless travel agent
166 Posted 18/08/2017 at 12:50:09
Lookman started very brightly and looks like he could benefit from a run of games, he just needs to realize he doesn't need to do a trick every time he receives the ball. I thought Klaassen struggled with the pace of the game; he showed some nice touches and it will be fairer to judge him in a few months time.
I thought Gueye and Williams were our 2 best players, and Schneiderlin was playing well till he had to go off.
I thought Mirallas again flatters to deceive you always think he is going to have an impact on games but that happens less and less now.
I think with having to incorporate so many new faces doesn't make it any easier either. Also when Schneiderlin went off it seemed to unbalance us a bit. I had said maybe we don't need 2 holding midfield players but last night you could see the gaps in midfield when Schneiderlin had gone off. To be fair, Tom Davies isn't a defensive midfield player so maybe he shouldn't have been asked to play in Schneiderlin's position.
167 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:02:10
168 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:04:35
Thought Lookman looks a great prospect, as people have mentioned above, too many tricks at times and his passing is dreadful and decision making not yet there - will come with experience. They got worse as the game went on as he tired too.
First half was excellent and we should be fit enough to keep that pace up so second half was disappointing.
Klaassen made some good runs and wasn't spotted, did look a little headless chicken at times but genuinely believe once the players around him get used to his runs he will score goals. Fully expect Mirallas/Lookman to make way for Sigurdsson.
I thought Rooney led the line well and didn't come back as deep too many times, should have scored before half time but was well read by the keeper.
We do need a number 9 though.
169 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:09:12
I'd love to be celebrating his performances but that is going to come from him doing more on the ball and on the pitch, and not from suggestions from other people who think he's doing all right.
Be interested to see how he does in the next few games. I hope he hits a rich vein of form, but my fear is that he will be slightly off the pace and will not contribute much.
170 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:25:48
He needs to get fitter and ideally a little stronger and faster but Davvy has got it where it counts and where you often can't train to improvement, in the head.
If only we could blend Barkley's physical attributes with Klaassen's mental attributes then we really would have a world class player!
But I feel fairly confident that Klaassen will come good and will form a good relationship with Rooney and Siggurdsson in particular in order to make us a bit sharper and inventive in the final third. It may take a while but he's only 24 and this league is a big step up. I'd have a bet that if he stays fit and in the team he'll end the season with seven or eight goals and as many assists.
171 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:49:26
I too saw the incident where a steward was attacked. No coincidence that the poor bloke was black. It doesn't augur well for the return leg. It's not as if Hajduk don't have previous for racist chanting.
The almost total absence of women, children and older folk in the away support last night was amazing. As a 64 year old (or any age for that matter), I would stay away from the return leg at all costs!
172 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:49:36
173 Posted 18/08/2017 at 13:57:21
I agree with above comment's that you can see he has got a good brain and half decent touch but usually with the smaller technical player's they are one step ahead with there movement they usually find pocket's of space and are quick on the turn but Davy has not shown this at all yet. He hardly moves from the centre of the pitch even when he is marked or surrounded by the opposition.
Everytime the fullback's get the ball Klaassen is static and watches the game instead of being the guy who links's defence to attack!!
I expected more from a £27 million signing who was the captain of Ajax!
174 Posted 18/08/2017 at 14:24:37
On another note, I thought the police and stewards handled the trouble yesterday in exemplary fashion, not an easy feat.
175 Posted 18/08/2017 at 14:39:39
I suspect that there will be a large Police presence in the city at the beach and at the Riva where the majority of the bars and restuarants are along the harbour front. My advise is to enjoy yourselves don't be a dick and don't fuck about with the Police either, they treat their fans like shit, big sticks and no questions asked!
I was there when they played their big Croatian rivals Dinamo Zagreb one year, lets say that it got a bit 'interesting'!!
176 Posted 18/08/2017 at 14:46:15
Shame...as you say some nutters ruin things.
177 Posted 18/08/2017 at 14:50:52
I appreciate he gave the ball away a few times but at least he is trying incisive one touch passes like his stretched return to Baines that was key to our first goal and the pass to Rooney where he missed the chance. I think once the team train and play more together more of his touches will come off. Its refreshing seeing someone play that way rather than too many touches slow indecisive play that was a feature of our play centrally in the final 3rd last season.
The Pickford half volleyed pass was a joy to behold as was him bollocking Rooney.
178 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:09:44
He was very good, yet several players were below his standard. No strident criticism there?!
Mirallas, Williams & Davies sadly were not effective or effected the game last night. You might want to start there rather than with DK.
Everton have long sought players with brains, and leadership qualities. Rooney and Klaassen fit this perfectly. A cerebral player not a kick the crap out of everything making you think I'm good kind of player is Daavie.
I'm sorry his game is much more subtle and if people cannot seen that then perhaps go watch some video of him.
The intangible elements he brings are that. Reading of play, movement, first time play, ball speed, playing the appropriate style of pass to specific colleagues.
All easily missed. A very good acquisition that Daavie la.
179 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:28:28
I've just watched the 20 mins video after being wrapped up watching "in the flesh" at Goodison
Viewing more calmly, I thought Klaassen was involved to great effect; I'm sure he'll get there once he's up to pace with the Prem and more in tune with his colleagues
He doesn't seem to be an "I've lost it...oh dear, never mind" hand-on-hips type player
180 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:32:09
181 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:32:42
182 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:37:18
183 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:40:28
184 Posted 18/08/2017 at 15:47:54
Mind you, he did once get sent off at Newcastle for 'accidentally' following through with his throw and punching their centre forward who was trying the same tactic!
185 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:01:31
I think if we all agree not to tell Davy all the horrible things that have been said then it might not affect his game.
186 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:18:50
I was happy with his crosses but will reserve judgement on the rest of his game especially the defensive side of it.
187 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:25:50
188 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:26:06
Coleman captain of Eire
Williams captain of Wales
Baines vice captain
Keane captain of Burnley
Klaassen captain of Ajax
Rooney captain of England/Man Utd
Schneiderlin captain of Southampton (I think?!)
Sigurdsson captain of Iceland
Plus others e.g. Pickford showing similar qualities.
189 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:28:04
Now the rumours of Diego Costa are gathering pace. If there's no other suitable permanent options out there right now then a six month load would be ideal. I don't like his conduct at Chelsea, but that would not be our problem. Could give us that boost to really have an outstanding season and in January off he goes to Athletico and we see who else there is available. I can't see how we can lose out on this one. If he starts acting the fool just banish him from Finch Farm and if possible terminate the loan. If that's not possible then we've only lost out on a few months wages. That said, I can't see any reason for him to act up in such a short spell.
190 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:39:08
Amazingly, they have also charged Everton. WTF for though, I don't know. Can only be for the missiles that were thrown back into the Split fans from the park end.
191 Posted 18/08/2017 at 16:46:18
192 Posted 18/08/2017 at 17:00:38
That's exactly what we've been charged with. One charge seemingly, while Split have a litany of charges to contend with.
Quite a lot of previous these guys seemingly, not just this season, but apparently their fines total about £650k over time, according to some accounts.
193 Posted 18/08/2017 at 17:49:17
“You must have strong positioning, ability to control the ball at speed and also have the technique to deal with the speed of it [in midfield]," said Cruyff in 2014.
"Xavi, Toni Kroos and Davy Klaassen can do it. All three have perfect anticipation and they can play it both left and right excellently.
"You watch, when Klaassen plays from that position for Ajax, the tempo increases immediately. Moreover, he rarely loses possession."
I think Johann Cruyff knew a thing or two about football.
194 Posted 18/08/2017 at 17:57:29
195 Posted 18/08/2017 at 17:59:03
196 Posted 18/08/2017 at 18:00:33
197 Posted 18/08/2017 at 18:21:08
198 Posted 18/08/2017 at 18:22:27
Everton received 1400 tickets for this game, the majority of which have now been sold. So that's 1400 Everton fans who have shelled out for flights and accommodation. UEFA must surely be aware of this, and must realise that it's too late in the day to play this game behind closed doors?
Also, I don't think there will be many travel insurance companies who would consider paying out because the game is "played behind closed doors".
The only option, in my opinion, is to vastly reduce the capacity for the second leg, but there again it is probably too late in the day to impose this. Should Split get through, and I don't think they will, then I would imagine their group games will be played behind closed doors, or at least one of them. More likely any sanction will be imposed upon them next season.
199 Posted 18/08/2017 at 18:53:00
200 Posted 18/08/2017 at 19:02:06
201 Posted 18/08/2017 at 19:07:30
Yes, we went off the boil in the second half, but I'm not sure how you blame the crowd problem for that.
202 Posted 18/08/2017 at 19:17:22
Will just be a case of keeping a low profile and not wearing any colours. We also intend to stay away from the main square in Split, the place where Everton fans (and other fans I imagine) usually congregate at these European aways. By not attracting attention to ourselves we should be ok.
203 Posted 18/08/2017 at 21:39:27
Jordan not only acknowledges the fans at both ends but he relishes the support and will rally it when it matters, he's brimful of confidence and fight. He'll have bad patches and make mistakes, of course, but this man is a jewel for us because he has a great deal of what we've so sorely lacked for far too long.
204 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:17:19
205 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:32:58
Once his teammates realise his pace is non existent, they'll stop expecting him to catch these balls. Thought he looked decent, but I expect him to be relegated to the bench to fit Sigurdsson in anyway.
206 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:41:41
207 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:43:24
As for the game good stuff, in the main, but would have loved to have had that killer third goal. Pickford, Keane, & Gana were all great, and I thought both Schneiderlin & Klaassen did well. I expect us to see this one out next week without not too much on-field drama, but all the best to any of our fans heading over there, and fingers crossed you stay clear of any bother. COYB.
208 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:45:02
Johan Cruyff was obviously "bigging" up the captain of the club he loved and the guy who shone in a terrible league!!
Top class player's shine no matter what league they play in and show the qualities that make them 'better' than the rest instantly!
Klaassen for me is a carbon copy of Will Hughes from Derby, technically accomplished, good brain, can score a goal make a chance but not big enough, fast enough or strong enough to do it at the top level!
209 Posted 18/08/2017 at 22:46:55
4 games ffs. Give the lad a chance.
210 Posted 18/08/2017 at 23:06:20
211 Posted 18/08/2017 at 23:10:00
While comparing Klaassen with the likes of Kroos and Xavi is nonsense, Xavi was one of if not the best playmaker of recent times and a totally different player and Kroos is quality proved in two top leagues.
I take issue with your not big enough, fast enough, strong enough, Xavi is 5' 7, Iniesta 5' 7" and a bit and well there are plenty of players who lack pace, height and strength playing at the top level. Similarly your premature comparison to Will Hughes is clearly ridiculous.
As for top players being instant successes in any league that is utter tripe. Dennis Bergkamp took a good while to settle at Arsenal, Bale was shocking at Spurs, Henry took time and some top players just don't work out in certain leagues, Diego Forlan as an example.
Why not just let's see what happens, if at the end of the season he hasn't been up to much then fine but it not even September.
212 Posted 18/08/2017 at 23:46:16
213 Posted 18/08/2017 at 23:59:30
214 Posted 19/08/2017 at 00:06:06
215 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:06:19
He is of similar height, similar build as well as his similar playing style being a central creative midfielder who isn't the quickest but has a nice touch and good brain?? What's ridiculous about that?
My point was Will Hughes has undoubted talent and ability but no on from the top league has took a chance on him for because he is short in the other physical department's I have mentioned above about Klaassen!
On the other point were you said I was talking tripe, I never once said all top player's were instant successes what I said was their class and their strengths shone instantly which I stand by.
Did N'golo Kante, Idrissa Gueye, Eden Hazard, Diego Costa, Suarez, David Silva, Juan Mata or any of the other many top class import's to our league need time to show they are the real deal??
No, because class is permanent and when you've got it, you have got it and it show's!
Graham 209, I am more than willing to give Klaassen a chance what I said was he's not in Xavi and Toni Kroos's league because he's not!
I really do hope the Dutchman comes good because it will mean he is playing well and doing the business on the pitch for us but first impression's are he is going to struggle and I fear for him that Gylfi is going to slot in an be an instant success!!
216 Posted 18/08/2017 at 00:11:33
Or maybe he will struggle to adjust to the Premier League and be in and out of the starting XI.
But the level he is currently at - and I know it is only four games - is not currently giving me much to get excited about.
Keane and Pickford have really hit the ground running. Hopefully Sigurdsson will do the same.
217 Posted 19/08/2017 at 00:17:12
I like the quick feet not worried about a tackle or two. Chases back and has good movement going forward, as witnessed with the Rooney goal, drawing the defender.
I've been playing a bit of five-a-side to keep fit I'm 60 yr. Takes a while to gel as a team... lol!
218 Posted 19/08/2017 at 00:32:31
Good advise, Split will be full of tourists at this time of the year anyway so it should be easy to blend in. It isn't going to be a Nurenberg or a Wolfsburg type away away, where thousands of blues descend on the city, drink the place dry, sing our songs and paint the town blue without a problem. It's going to a a quiet one, have a few drinks, keep an eye on each other and you should be all right.
I've seen people on twitter saying that they are taking Serbian flags and Dinamo Zagreb flags, you may as well paint a target on your back which says "kick the shit out of me please", because that will definitely happen to anyone that it stupid enough to do that.
Don't forget they fought a civil war 25 years to get rid of the Serbian influence over the former Yugoslavia and Dinamo are their corrupt and most hated rivals. All the top Croatian FA officials are ex Dinamo, imagine having all Kopites as members of the FA and you can go someway to imagining how bad it would be.
As I said somewhere up the thread football is a religion to them.
219 Posted 19/08/2017 at 01:43:21
My point re Hughes is it is far too early to draw the comparisons, same as whoever apparently mentioned the Kroos thing. As I said, it took Bergkamp a good while to settle as I hope we agree that he was a class player?
As for instant successes, you stated "Top class player's shine no matter what league they play in and show the qualities that make them 'better' than the rest instantly", which would suggest instant successes to me but apologies if that was not the intent.
For me Klaassen has done okay; no, he hasn't set the world alight but I feel it far too premature to write him off as a Championship player, which again I get from your talk of top leagues. Time will tell, but he deserves our support and he is getting some undeserved stick at the moment.
220 Posted 19/08/2017 at 03:25:42
Klaassen very rarely has more than one touch, but uses it so wisely. He's no physical specimen, but does he need to be? He's sharp of mind and plays with his head up. Barkley can't see over his garden fence while Klaassen casts his gaze over the Pyrenees.
I think my biggest concern is going to be how Klaassen, Sigurdsson and Rooney all fit in the same team. All like to play in the hole. And Davies, I do fear for young Tom Davies.
221 Posted 19/08/2017 at 04:26:46
222 Posted 19/08/2017 at 06:19:20
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