Skip to Main Content
Members:   Log In Sign Up
Text:  A  A  A

Top Ten Hit for Moyes
Daily Post
Thursday August 15, 2002

DAVID MOYES is the kind of manager who seems to inspire comparisons.

In his brief five month career as Everton boss he has already been likened to a young Alex Ferguson, while his 'People's Club' proclamation evoked memories of Bill Shankly's unique managerial style.

But Blues' defender Steve Watson has his own ideas.

The versatile Geordie recalled an inspirational boss from his own past when he talked about the impact Moyes has had at Goodison Park.

"The new manager has brought in some good ideas and has been working really hard . . . I would compare him to Kevin Keegan in terms of his enthusiasm and his approach," he explained.

"But you will never catch me comparing him to the previous manager and trying to pick faults with Walter Smith, because I thought the world of him.

"Every manager is different and sometimes a change is as good as anything."

Watson has targetted a top 10 finish - again - as a result of that managerial change, and while the new boss is not prepared to talk about the impact of injuries on

his squad, Watson is more forthcoming.

"I think it is realistic to look for a finish in the top half. But I said this last year," he explained.

"There are a number of reasons why that did not happen last year and injuries were a major factor.

"Everybody says it is an excuse but it was not, it was a fact. I remember at one stage being in for treatment on the morning of a game and there were about 11 of us in the treatment room.

"Not even a squad as big as Manchester United's can carry that kind of injury list. Walter never made excuses, he just explained the situation.

"But if we can keep the squad fit and healthy I am convinced that will make a huge difference.

"Top half of the table would be great. Everton fans understand football and all they want to see is a definite improvement and a sign that we are going in the right direction.

"Getting into the top 10 and pushing for Europe would be a great step for us and I don't think it is beyond our grasp."

Five new faces have freshened up the Blues' squad this summer and Watson added: "The gaffer has done really well to get the players in that he has.

"No doubt the attraction of a club like Everton was a big factor, particularly with players like Joseph Yobo and Juliano Rodrigo who had more than one choice of where to go.

"But it says a lot about the place that they have chosen Everton. We look like we've got a good squad and a decent sized squad for the start of the season.

"The two Chinese lads have really impressed me. It was a great piece of initiative to get the two lads over here but nobody really knew what to expect from them.

"The first time anybody really saw them was against Wrexham a couple of weeks ago. I turned around after the game to Gary Naysmith and said how handy the pair of them looked.

"They look fit and raring to go. They are keeping their heads down at the moment and are just trying to blend in.

"Pre-season has been really hard but we have kept the majority of the squad fit and that is going to be the key."

Ironically Watson is an injury doubt for the opening game of the season, after suffering from a tight hamstring in the last couple of pre-season friendlies.

But the problem is not serious - and he hopes his versatility will guarantee him a regular berth this season.

"I have had competition to deal with all my career and, within reason, it is great to be looking around and seeing how many players we have got."



© Trinity Mirror Plc 2002