An even first half, both sides playing the Martinez way, with few chances worthy of note. The second half saw sumptuous football from Everton that finally delivered with a pile-driver from Coleman but Tiendalli somehow powered home a deflected goal off Oviedo as the rain poured down. It came down to Barkley and an absolutely brilliant free-kick curled over and around the wall, in off the bar... Magnificent way to end a superb performance.


Everton took on Swansea City, a club that stands large in the career of Roberto Martinez, with McCarthy back following suspension, Barkley and Mirallas providing the forward impetus to feed Romelu Lukaku, Deulofeu missing with a hamstring injury. Antonin Alcaraz and Apostollos Vellios on the bench alongside potential super-sub Leon Osman, rested after a great display against Fulham.

The first real attack came from Swansea, Shelvey setting up Routledge misreading the ball, Shelvey then bamboozling Coleman on the right to set up Routledge again, but he screwed the shot wide. A chance came at the other end, a good ball in for Lukaku as Swansea looked to ramp up their high pressing game, trying to lay down a marker, but Everton started to settle and play the ball around with more confidence... if a little too slow to really penetrate.

Floes cynically tripped a skin-headed Barkley as the Big Evertonian threatened to run away from him but Everton elected to play the centrally positioned kick short and it came to nothing. But Everton kept attacking, with Mirallas doing a cameo down the right and firing low, an easy save at the near post. Pienaar headed Everton's first corner weakly at Tremmel.

Swansea then had a reasonable spell of possession without really threatening the Everton goal, Shelvey called for a high foot on Coleman. Mirallas robbed Flores but went head down and had his shot blocked with Pienaar to his left and Lukaku to his right, booth starring at a gaping goal. Very selfish.

A great piece of theatre from Barkley, taunting the Swansea defence with a repeated donkey-kick feint, then being driven across the byeline, for a corner, but Bony actually fouled Barkley, and did not touch the ball, so strictly a penalty! Then a nervy moment as Tremmel dropped a looping ball but fell on it before Lukaku could strike.

More solid midfield possession, Everton in control but unable to really break a stranglehold in the defensive highline that was the perfect counter to Blues deliberate play, which forced long balls that lost possession, one coming right back for Bony to lash high and wide, Everton looking potentially vulnerable to a really quick counter-attack from The Swans.

Both sides were trying to mix it up a little, Everton pressing the Swansea defensive when they were passing it across the back, and forcing them to go long. Then great work by Oviedo, running in and and a fearsome block from Davies out for a corner, which was looped in by Barkley to the far post for another corner... but no, another ball called wrongly for the home side by Lee Mason. Then, two players going in high... Swansea kick!

Oviedo defended well to give up a corner which Distin puts out for a throw, rather than hoofing it, and Shelvey got the ball in for a bicycle kick by Bony that failed to connect. Everton pressed for a good turnover but Swansea then forced Everton to play possession all the way back to Howard, a very tight game that would need a mistake, it seemed, for anyone to break the deadlock.

Swansea won a free-kick wide right that was whipped in and cleared by the head of Jagielka. Another superbly timed sliding tackle from Bryan Oviedo, he looks so composed when making that now trademark move, as Martinez started to prep Osman.

Coleman zoomed past Davies after a hopeful long ball but his cross was slow and poor, and Swansea were quickly on the break, winning a corner that went harmlessly wide. Another long ball picked out Lukaku but he could only head it back. Barkley then did brilliantly to dispossess De Guzman and set up another smart Everton attack but again, Coleman's final ball not good enough. Barkley then backheeled nicely for Pienaar but he took a lash and it was well wide.

Then, a much faster move by Everton, Pienaar slotting in Barkely, a perfect chance, and he ties his feet in knots, falls over in a heap. Then another brilliant Barkley ball released Mirallas, who scampers down the right, centres to Lukaku but the defender cut out a certain goal.

Then, a fabulous run in by Coleman, would have been a brilliant goal but it was whipped off his toe at the very last second as he tried to fake Tremmel. Some fantastic attacking play by the All-Blues, but still the end-product ominously absent.

It was the hour mark already, in a fantastic game of football, with Everton seemingly holding all the cards but unable to flourish the final flush their fantastic football demanded. More good play created what should have been a fantastic chance for Lukaku but it was Barry who skied it when it should have been tucked into the top corner behind Tremmel.

Then, brilliant nutmeg and powerful run form Barkley, who smashes a shot from 25 yds, tipped fractionally by Tremmel, up onto and over the crossbar... fantastic stuff. Then, Coleman, nothing on, outside the area, a fearsome strike, a wicked curve away from Tremmel and inside the post — an absolutely brilliant goal from Irishman. The perfect topping for some absolutely scintillating play from Everton. Words are insufficient to describe this... Just tremendous... School of Science... Sin Meido.

But just four minutes later and a deep ball in to the Everton far post and Tiendalli somehow bobbled it past Howard off Oviedo and into his goal, sending the home side into raptures, and giving Everton all of it to do again. Unbelievable stuff. How will Everton get this lead back?

Martinez resisted any temptation to change things, allowing his opposite number to make some changes, and it finally goaded him into action, Osman and Naismith on for Pienaar and Mirallas with 13 mins of this absorbing encounter.

The changes seemed to favour Swansea, as it took a little while for Everton's changes to gel, while Vazquez somehow got behind the Everton defence and tried to chip Howard one-on-one, straight at him!

McCarthy went on a great run and was fouled around 25 yards out, surely just a little too far for a shot on goal? No... BARKLEYYYYY!!!! FANTASTIC STRIKE!!! An absolutely brilliant free-kick in curled over and around the wall, in off the bar... Magnificent!

Swansea, stunned, came at Everton all guns blazing, a fantastic atmosphere from the small but noisy 20-odd thousand crowd. After something of a lull, Everton took heart from the tremendous crowd, with minutes ticking away, another corner and Osman trying to do it all himself, scooping over from a narrow angle.

Added time: 3 mins, and Barkley gave away a free-kick, and from the follow-up, Lamah fired in a shot that Howard had to tip over. Swansea kept pressing, somehow got in Howard, but Vasquez closes his eyes and misses an open goal! Tremendous stuff right through to the last minute, and absolutely brilliant game of football, and a very, very very important win for Everton and Roberto Martinez, a tremendous reward for the raucous travelling army.

Scorers: Tiendalli (70'); Coleman (64'), Barkley (86')

Swansea City: Tremmel, Tiendalli, Chico, Williams, Ben Davies Y:83', Routledge (66' Lamah), Shelvey, De Guzman (86' Pozuelo), Canas, Hernandez, Bony (76' Vazquez).
Subs not Used: Amat, Taylor, Britton, Zabret.

Everton: Howard, Coleman, Jagielka, Distin, Oviedo, McCarthy, Barry, Mirallas (78' Naismith), Barkley, Pienaar (78' Osman), Lukaku.
Subs not Used: Robles, Heitinga, Stones, Vellios, Alcaraz.

Referee: Lee Mason

Attendance: 20,695

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Michael Kenrick
954 Posted 22/12/2013 at 16:50:44
Yes, sharper stuff in the final third, again, and Everton would be in front.... but you could also say the same for Swansea.

Can't believe I'm saying this, but a game set up perhaps for Osman to come on later... although Swansea's pressing game and Lee Mason's white eyes seem destined to see him pushed off the ball relentlessly.

The perfect test for Martinez: how to structure a win against very evenly matched opponents he knows only too well... a fascinating prospect for the second half!

Stu Cameron
957 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:13:52
Get in there Coleman lad!
Jim Bennings
958 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:19:12
Our end product at times is so frustrating. Lukaku desperately needs some pressure putting on him in January, he doesn't seem to be able to hold the ball up and doesn't seem in the game as much as he should.

Mirallas continues to make me tear my hair out, for a player who has supposedly so many skills and tricks, why can he never deliver a good final ball??

Barkley has been having one of those 'learning curve' games so far, fair enough great effort after a great run but he needs to command the show more often. Pienaar been in and out the match so far. I think we need more consistency from the wingers/wide men.

WOOOOOW... Coleman doing what you would expect Miarallas to do. Fuck offffffffffff — how are we letting this shit Swansea side score here, this is the worst Swansea side since they came up. Come on, Everton, if your serious of getting 4th, you got to be winning these types of games.

Jim Bennings
959 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:30:03
Why do we always seem to concede freak shit goals? The one thing we didn't need was to concede so quick after going ahead. Still, I don't think we know how to kill off winnable away games, eg, Palace away, Norwich.

Swansea have been there for the taking. Now Pienaar has gone down injured, we badly need January to come here, Barry is a game away from suspension too. Mirallas going off for Naismith, says it all really about how much Mirallas has deteriorated this season.

Jimmy Sørheim
960 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:36:07
I have seen that Lukaku seems very tired, he does not work as hard as he did in the start of the season.

I think it is time Vellios got some game-time as a sub here, or we will draw AGAIN.

Gavin Ramejkis
961 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:53:06
Coleman my MotM by a country mile, a good game from him, some poor midfielding giving them too much room and space to come forward. Lukaku slated but isolated with little support, far too often coming back deep to get the ball. When he did win it in advanced position, there was no-one there to pick up the second ball.

And FFS, Mirallas — learn to look up and pass the ball instead of going for glory.

Ross Edwards
962 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:52:38
Brilliant goals. Absolutely sensational stuff by Barkley. The new Gazza.

Leighton who?

If we can get 10 points from 12 over the Christmas period, we will definitely be in contention.

Anto Byrne
963 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:56:27
It's 2am here and I am so on a high, that football a joy to behold. Roberto — thank you so much.
Roman Sidey
964 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:56:41
12 from 12 would be my objective, Ross.
Kev Dooley
965 Posted 22/12/2013 at 17:58:02
Unreal... Coleman outstanding — and getting an eye for goal... Maybe we have the all new version of Mr Bale on out hands!!!

I've noticed, especially in the Liverpool game earlier, and one or two more times since, we would've put a lot more teams to bed if we were a little bit less selfish. Instead on shooting, an easy and simple pass/tap in would've been sufficient.

All that aside... great view from cloud 9! :)
COYB :)

Ross Edwards
967 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:03:01
Of course Roman. We could be above the RS come the New Year. They have Chelsea and City away, we have Sunderland, Southampton (who have collapsed) and Stoke, who we destroyed a fortnight ago.
Roman Sidey
968 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:05:43
Yeah, exactly, so stop being so negative. 10 from 12? That's fantastic.
Phil Smith
971 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:04:41
Starting to look a bit tired the squad though. Need some new faces to freshen things up. We ground this result out today even though we didn't play well. Coleman and Ross were the difference today. Bags of energy, along with McCarthy.
Roman Sidey
972 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:08:40
In all seriousness, when the commentator said "Everything Everton are doing is coming down the right", I had a little smile. It's not something we've heard much of over the past decade. Coleman is a superstar and it's a damn shame he'll be our only full-back not at the World Cup.
Patrick Murphy
973 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:09:47
One game at a time boys - A much needed and welcome win today though as anything less and the players may have lost heart - due to the results all going in favour of the top eight teams or so - I must admit when I saw that Spurs had won I thought typical Everton we'll screw this up today - but we won and now we move onto the next one.
Steven Telford
975 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:14:04
I was worried at half time that we'd end up missing Delboy, as the sort of Game changer we need. But what appears somewhat special about our current team, is that it seems we are not overly dependent on any one individual. Lukaku was AWOL today, but to be fair his very presence is enough to occupy the minds of the defenders.

Two world class goals, Coleman was a Brazilian right back today. The interviewer only let Martinez discuss Barkley, and equal praise should have gone to the farmer.

Food for thought: that if he was fit, it probably would have been Baines who took that free kick.

Michael Kenrick
976 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:19:58
Well, as you can probably tell, I thought that was an absolutely brilliant game from Everton. The goals needed to be of really top-class quality to beat that lot in what was a potentially very difficult game. And the play at times, with flicks, and runs, pass and move... some great stuff. And great words right now on 606 from 'Jamie' phoning in. Nailed it, lad!
Barry Rathbone
977 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:14:55
Xmas can start now, thanks Roberto you absolute genius. Usually the RS going on an upward curve is the invisible switch that sends us into free-fall — not anymore.

Well done, Blue Boys... week-in & week-out this season, you astound me — we are THE team to watch! Marvelous.

Jamie Crowley
978 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:18:26
Both teams played so similar it seemed as if everything cancelled each other out.

Amazing strike by Coleman. Has to be MotM. Wonderful free kick taken by Barkley.

Keep looking up! Great hard won 3 points.

Anthony Burke
979 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:18:03
What game was Laudrup watching? "We deserved a point"???!?! Their first shot on goal was by Oviedo!

First half was poor but we stuck at it. Coleman and Barkley were excellent. Top 4 to stay, hopefully. COYB !!!!

Jamie Crowley
980 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:24:25
Great and very true point Barry. We are definitely THE team to watch.
Mark Frere
981 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:18:26
Yes Patrick, I've never known a season like this one where 7 or 8 teams have been so dominant. It's such a struggle for any of the top teams to get any kind of daylight between themselves and the other teams. That's the only frustrating thing so far this season. Still, what season we're having and 40 points at the half-way point is becoming a real reality.

ps: What a player Coleman is!

Garry Corgan
982 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:25:52
Sunderland and Southampton at home followed by Stoke away.

Chelsea vs Arsenal
Chelsea vs Liverpool
Man City vs Liverpool

All to come on, or before, New Year's Day. Everton top by the time we go back to work?

Anto Meehan
984 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:30:38
Too true Garry, said to some Man Utd mates of mine after the Arsenal game that I'd be surprised if Everton were NOT top of the league in January.

The run of games after Arsenal had 7 winnable matches. 2 down 5 to go :-)

Raymond Fox
985 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:24:42
If we cant find a serious investor (with the right motives) at the moment, we will never find one, someone has a great chance to takeover a great club that's absolutely rocking & flying at the moment.

Give our manager the crown jewels for a 10 year contract, spend £30m on 2 class players if we can find them in January, & it's Europe here we come.

Brent Stephens
987 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:33:07
How am I meant to make any rational, sensible comments after another 3 points, away from home, into 4th, and 2 great goals? I'm just on another fecking emotional level.

And with the games now to come. 2 visits to GP and 1 to Stoke within a couple of weeks. I dread to think where we could be. Dread to think.

Steven Telford
989 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:35:54
We could very feasibly be top of the league now, if only it wasn't for those "should have won" draws.
Jamie Crowley
990 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:36:10
First by the New Year is very plausible shout.

In fact...

It should be the goal of the Squad looking at the fixture list.

HOLY SHIT!

Surreal....

Mike Hughes
991 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:29:45
Sunderland at home. Thankfully I'm getting a new calculator for Christmas to keep up with how many we put past them. It's ages since we absolutely stuffed anyone by 5+ goals.

Great win today. Hope Arsenal win tomorrow to knock the RS off the top and keep us in the top 4.

Paul Thompson
992 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:34:42
Agree with Michael - a good game. Thought the tone of the Live Form comments was too negative (about both teams). First half was admittedly not our best, but second we were much more dynamic. Lukaku getting some stick, but he's not getting the service in front of him. Coleman MotM, but McCarthy unsung hero again. And another fine display in goal from Tim.
Garry Corgan
994 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:39:37
More stats to warm you over Christmas.

Next up: Sunderland.
Only three points taken from the last eighteen available. 17th in the Premier League form table. Three draws and three defeats in their last six games.

Then: Southampton
Supposedly having a good season, with Pochettino apparently working wonders. In reality, they've taken just two points from the last eighteen and are bottom of the Premier League form table. Two draws and four defeats in the past six.

Kevin Tully
995 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:24:45
Oviedo is not as good going forward as Baines, but he looks a better defender to me. Mirallas is really fecking annoying at the moment. I don't know if him & Lukaku get on, but he refuses to pass to the man.

Best defence in the Premier League, and two points off the top of the table. We have a very important transfer window opening in a few days, I trust Martinez has something up his sleeve, especially if we lose Jelavic.

We are not relying on one goalscorer though, and that my friends indicates we are playing as a team should. Lukaku has been very average the past month, so it's bollocks that we will suffer if he has to go back to Chelsea, we clearly need another striker this window to seamlessly take that role on next season.

My only worry is keeping hold of Martinez, but I think the fact he has full control of the playing side is a big plus for him at Everton. He must look at Spurs and think feck going to a club like that.

It's a blue Christmas this year lads - seasons greetings to all blues, wherever you are in the world.

Roman Sidey
996 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:39:17
Really don't want to get ahead of anything, and it might just be the chance of spending Christmas in the top four, but it does feel like something special could happen this season.

Oh, and Ross, was just mucking about before. All jokes.

Neil Adams
998 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:45:19
Quite a defensive-minded bench from Martinez today with Stones, Heitinga and Alcaraz available – nice to see Antolin is fit enough to be considered. No Jelavic though – is he injured or out of favour pending a transfer away in January? Nice to see such a good mixture of youth and experience throughout the squad.

Great result today, and if we can keep up these good performances over the next few games there's no reason why we can't be seriously considering a top-4 finish come the end of the season.

Andy Meighan
999 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:35:53
Great result and a great second-half performance. Without the risk of boring everyone to death, we'd have drawn that game under the other fella once they equalised. I still knew we'd win once they got their spawny equaliser.

Tell you what, though, them dickheads on Sky and BT sport are getting on my fucking tits now with their ridiculous "Moyes should have bought Barkley instead of Fellaini"... Cretins. He wouldn't give the kid a run in the side when he was manager. Don't these morons do their homework. Barklay is becoming the gem he is because of this brilliant young manager we've got another master class from this brilliant young footballer.

God, it's good being a blue! The only worrying thing for me today: the form of Lukaku. I thought he was piss poor and I don't know what game Niall Quinn was watching. Still, it's another win and keeps us riding high!!!!

Ian Burns
000 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:44:12
Overdone the champers over the Bombay gin - but what the feck - what a 3 points gained by two superb goals.

Laudrup is an arse; RM is Santa Claus

Steve Guy
001 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:47:25
Michael, what did Jamie say on 606 ?
Ajay Gopal
003 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:51:24
Here on Start Sports in India/Asia, John Dykes, Alan Curbishley & Pete Townsend all drooling over Ross Barkley. He IS going to be something special but can they at least give him & Everton at least 2 full seasons before they start the speculations/whispers trying to engineer a move away for him?
Anthony Burke
004 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:52:20
Are we title contenders? I'd be happy with top 4 but who knows...
Bradley Smith
005 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:46:49
Cloud 9 — all hail Roberto Martinez and his blue army. Distin is like a fine wine... Jags week-in & week-out solid as a rock. Tim Howard looks unbeatable! This Spanish master is making dream.... Barkley is going to be far better than Ballack was — I am thinking more on the Zidane level!
Norman Merrill
006 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:49:08
The two goals scored by Seamus & Ross would grace any playing field used by Brazil or Barcelona, and I'm sure there is more to come.

The only sickener was the goal Swansea got. I hope we learn the lesson of not falling asleep.

Ajay Gopal
007 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:58:02
In spite of the goal conceded today - Everton have just become the best defensive team in the Premier League (fewest goals conceded)! And some people thought RM would turn us into Wigan — unbelievable!
David Greenwood
008 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:56:49
Great result. How many games have Utd/Chelsea/Arsenal won over the years when not playing well, they just dug in and ground out the results? This is title winning stuff, not just top four.

Long way to go, but we this season could be very special.

Gary Mortimer
009 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:00:31
I'm sure that someone with the initials NE may soon post something along the lines:

"Last season we won 3-0. Therefore our new manager is nowhere near as good as the old manager."

Craig Fletcher
010 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:01:59
8am currently here in New Zealand, been up for over three hours and could not be prouder of the lads. The Everton top will be worn with pride around town today. Sunderland next for another three points thank you very much, COYB!!!!!
Jimmy Sørheim
011 Posted 22/12/2013 at 18:58:02
I am happy we won but it was almost another draw against lower teams.

Lukaku looks tired and not up to it.

I hope it goes over quick, but Martinez has to start rotating a lot more in this hectic period or the players will suffer come January.

David Hallwood
012 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:04:03
Good Point David(#008) and it's giving me belief that this season could be different. Obviously we need to be a bit luckier than the billionaires, but not to be on top of our game and get the 3 points (or the 6 points if you take in the Fulham game) means that we're onto something.

Man Yoo have done it for years, also could it be that we have a manager who wants to win, not hold on to what we've got.

Brent Stephens
013 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:09:35
Jimmy: "I am happy we won but it was almost another draw against lower teams."

Don't know if you've noticed, mate, but most teams are currently "lower teams" in relation to us. Speaks millions!

Steve Guy
014 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:09:13
Jimmy, the only thing Lukaka was tired of was not getting the ball in the right areas, Mirallas doing Mr. Selfish impressions and having to chase back to get even a sniff of the ball. He's had to do more of this in the last few games and will start getting frustrated.

Great result, great goals in what was a game if chess first half but as soon as it became a game of football in the second half there was only one team going to win it. Own goal was nearly a bullet in the foot but we got away with it.

John Ford
015 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:07:53
A bit staccato today but again we were the better team. Mirallas should have his nads wired to the Xmas tree lights! He needs his ego trimming. In true Everton style we again gave a stupid dangerous free kick away in the last minutes. Fortunately it didn't hurt us.

Great spirit and ability in the squad now. We need to smarten up in the final third but I'm sure RM knows that. I also believe this could be a special season.

Best wishes to all blues everywhere.

Craig Fletcher
016 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:10:41
Jimmy (11) it's been eight days since our last game, I'm not sure tiredness was a factor/or could be used an excuse at the minute. Certainly, it could be a factor over the next two weeks using, for the most part, the same players. We just need to keep grinding out the results like we did today. Well done lads.
Ian Bennett
017 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:09:56
Happy days again. Not vintage, but 3 points on the road will do for me, especially after a horrible oggy.

Don't entirely agree on the Lukaku point. He is still getting into good positions, but the service is either poor or the team mates are being greedy. Against Fulham both Mirallas and Del choose to shoot instead of square. The same from Mirallas today. Bobby has to get into them that the ball has to come otherwise you kill the striker movement. Head up lads.

Up the Blues.

Patrick Murphy
018 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:18:34
I don't think that it was tiredness that was responsible for some our football today I think it was the pressure of having to win as all of the others had done – but I hope it's a pressure that they learn to cope with and winning these types of games will help that enormously.
James Stewart
019 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:14:24
Great win! What a performance from Coleman and Barkley. Class acts. Feel for Lukaku as he is getting fuck-all service.

The one player who I am almost done with is Mirallas. Selfish beyond belief. It is a team game and how anyone at this level can be so blind to his team mates is quite astonishing. He needs taking aside for a quiet word or replacing come January.

Tommy Coleman
020 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:21:30
Top class goals from top class players in a top class team.

I'll keep saying it, we are title contenders.

Keep it going Blues!

Patrick Murphy
022 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:24:02
Perhaps KM has a problem with other forwards taking the limelight, it wasn't long after he arrived that Jealvic began his dry spell of Sahara Desert proportions - I wonder if RM will persevere with him after this season.
Colin Grierson
023 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:26:53
McCarthy brilliant again today! what a player! The best thing is Seamus and Ross took the attention off him. The lad is pure class. He won the free kick for Ross's goal and was everywhere. My player of the season so far!
Matt Smith
024 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:25:00
Mirallas — please pass the ball!!

If you watch the movement of anyone in the centre, when Mirallas gets the ball 30 yards out in the last third, no-one makes any runs, because they know what is going to happen: try and beat the man and shoot...

A stern bollocking is required. Fine if your name is Messi but Lukaku's body language says it all when Mirallas gets the ball.

Peter Jones
025 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:32:19
McCarthy did really well for the free kick before the goal but, other than that, was completely ordinary. If he was half the player you people say he is we would be winning five- or six-nil each week and he would be scoring a hat-trick. Get some proportion.
Jamie Barlow
026 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:21:05
All our forwards need to stop being so selfish. A little pass to the side instead of going for glory is what's stopping us from demolishing other teams.

I think this is the longest any side in the Prem has gone unbeaten so far this season. Long may it continue.

Is it Sunderland next on Boxing Day? I'm sure we put 5 past them once before on Boxing Day. Can lightning strike twice?

Kevin Tully
028 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:32:41
I'll tell you what does give me a warm Christmassy feeling (apart form a bottle of good brandy) it's when the Champions are hoping for a Swansea win so they can make up some ground in the League!

Always remember, you don't feel tired when you're winning!

Colin Glassar
029 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:37:28
We aren't playing great right now but still grinding out the results. This is what the top teams do. Long may it continue.
Jamie Barlow
031 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:41:09
Forgot to say, "stick that up your arse, Cameron."
Patrick Murphy
032 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:41:09
As it's nearly Christmas I thought I'd offer up a little ditty using the Slade tune...I'll stand by for mucho criticism.

Are you hoping to see new trophies on the wall
Are you smiling at the beautiful football
Do you hope to be at Wembley
when our captain lifts the cup
So good to see the Blue Boys on the up.

So here he is Bobby Martinez
Everton are having fun
could be a bright future now
for all at Everton

I'll get me coat...as they say.

Michael Kenrick
033 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:42:36
Peter (#025), got to say I'd not really noticed McCarthy... comms mentioned Barry a helluva lot more. But he actually gets the credit for setting up both goals. (I could have sworn it was Mirallas who passed the ball out to Coleman for his brilliant drive.)

There's nothing for it — I think I'll have to watch that second half again!

Andy Meighan
034 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:37:19
Peter (#025), I think your missing the point mate. McCarthy isn’t there to go past 3 and 4 players and bang one in from 25 yards; he does the spadework, the untidy stuff, the nitty gritty, the graft that frees our flair players to do their damage in the final third.

This kid has been an absolute steal at £13 mil. And I’ll bet you a pound to a pinch of shite there’s a few managers kicking themselves they never took a chance on him. Then again, I’ll bet you were a lover of the that other big galoot who couldn’t get up the East Lancs quick enough — and hasn’t that worked out well for him so far? He’s currently in hospital in Manchester getting the splinters out of his arse, he’s been on the bench that much...

You’ve got to say the Toffees haven’t half struggled without him, haven’t they. Peter, my old mate, have a look at the table. It might bring a smile to your miserable gob.

Paul Andrews
035 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:55:15
"Barkley's free kick went over AND around the wall"

Fuck me even Roberto Carlos couldn't do that.

Peter Jones
036 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:54:33
Different Peter Jones here. Odd that there is a Peter Jones on this site with completely opposite opinions to my own. But fuck that. All we do is win! And just for the record. He doesn't even practice free kicks.
John Keating
037 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:52:47
Peter 025
The amount of ground and closing down that McCarthy does is incredible.
Nothing fancy just tackles wins the balls and plays the easy pass.
He is always available for the ball.
I wasn't sure when we bought him but I am extremely impressed and considering the money players command these days it was money very well spent.
I really hope we keep Barry after his loan but even if he goes McCarthy will pick up so much from him it can only do well for his and our future.
Reid, Carsley were not fantastic individual players, but for the team were invaluable. McCarthy will be joining them believe me.
Mark Taylor
039 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:49:10
Very weird first half, like playing your mirror image, and just cancelling each other out.

Better second half from both teams but still a mixed bag. Barkley had one of his less effective games but the free kick was awesome. Mirallas flattered to deceive as usual, but still looked our most threatening player. Lukaku continues to disappoint. Yes I know, we don't pass to him, but then he's not that good at finding space. Wins barely anything in the air and has an awful first touch. I'm beginning to see why Mourinho isn't convinced.

On the upside, Barry and McCarthy provided the usual solid base, Seamus was awesome in attack (though poor in defence) and despite the unfortunate own goal, it looks like we have a minor gem in Oviedo. Apart from a heartstop moment at the end, Distin was also his usual excellent self- even beginning to look a bit more comfortable on the ball too.

Gary Creaney
041 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:52:18
I could never understand the "tiredness" thing! We are talking about supremely physically fit athletes here. They put more effort into training to maintain fitness levels than they ever need to in games. Therefore I don't buy the tiredness excuse that games bring along. If we are talking about mental tiredness here, well fuck that.... Understandable if you are on £18k a year but paid fortunes to play sport??

Still no mention on sky about our title credentials. It's all about top 4, even though we are 2 points off top, most clean sheets, fewest goals conceded, only 1 defeat, unbeaten in 10. I am only thinking about getting to the top right now, a good January window would only cement my view. No one is gonna run away with it this season, it is set up for a consistent side like ourselves to come from nowhere and win it. Aim for the stars and we might reach the moon.

Dave Lynch
042 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:00:43
I thought McCarthy had a great game. He let Ross get on with it and backed him up superbly. Broke up play brilliantly and tried to drive forward at every opportunity.
James Morgan
043 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:02:06
Peter (#025), I think your missing the point mate. McCarthy isn’t there to go past 3 and 4 players and bang one in from 25 yards; he does the spadework, the untidy stuff, the nitty gritty, the graft that frees our flair players to do their damage in the final third.

This kid has been an absolute steal at £13 mil. And I’ll bet you a pound to a pinch of shite there’s a few managers kicking themselves they never took a chance on him. Then again, I’ll bet you were a lover of the that other big galoot who couldn’t get up the East Lancs quick enough — and hasn’t that worked out well for him so far? He’s currently in hospital in Manchester getting the splinters out of his arse, he’s been on the bench that much...

You’ve got to say the Toffees haven’t half struggled without him, haven’t they. Peter, my old mate, have a look at the table. It might bring a smile to your miserable gob.

Nick Armitage
044 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:07:21
Great 3 points but Lukaku and Mirallas both dreadful. They need a rest.
Mike Hughes
045 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:04:26
Just seen the Barkley goal on You Tube.
Stitch that.
Bloody brilliant.
Would like to see two or three of them sail in at the kop end.

On Paddy Power, we're now 25/1 for the league.
Happy days.

Peter Jones
046 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:59:19
I am not anti-McCarthy. I thought that against Arsenal and United, he was for parts of the game. our best player - an equalizer to their big guns. But for me he has not the creative qualities that we need against teams who are otherwise worse than us like Swansea today and like Crystal Palace where he was basically shit. I see signs of Reid in him and I hope for lot more than Carsley but we need more from him than running around a lot and closing people down valuable though that may be.
Tony Fearns
047 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:07:21
Did Everton win? You couldn't tell judging by Sky Sports News as they had 20 mins analysis on the Spurs match.
Kunal Desai
048 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:01:06
I think RM may well shuffle the pack and make a few changes for the Sunderland game, as I think even with changing it around, we can still take 3 points of these lot as they are that poor. I wonder if Baines, Vellios and Osman all start. I think this could be an ideal opportunity to bench Lukaku, Mirallas and Pienaar and bring them on if need be. Start them for the Southampton game.
Ian Bennett
049 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:05:55
McCarthy had 2 assists, and I reckon a pass completion rate of over 90% to go with that tackling. A top performance from a vital cog.
Machiel Barnard
050 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:06:49
Excellent game today from our Blue Boys, but can anyone tell me if there were any injuries? Pienaar looked as if he was in pain when we was substituted . We cannot handle more injuries. We need Baines back to allow Oviedo to go to the wing and Pienaar to fill any other midfield position if there are more injuries or suspensions.
Peter Jones
051 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:13:04
I thought McCarthy had a great game. He let Ross get on with it and backed him up superbly. Broke up play brilliantly and tried to drive forward at every opportunity.
Colin Glassar
052 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:11:17
Is there a better playmaker and right back in the league right now?

Two stunning goals and some good all round performances.

Keep it up boys!

Patrick Murphy
053 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:12:36
I disagree Kunai - I think RM will try and keep the ball rolling and stay with much the same side as we had today - We haven't got enough bodies to start pratting about. RM can say to his players - get as many points as possible over the next 4 or 5 weeks and see if we can add a couple of extra bodies into the mix in the transfer window.

Get the points on the board to keep the momentum going.

Mick Davies
054 Posted 22/12/2013 at 19:49:39
We now have a team working hard for each other (except for one man Mirallas) and although it seems like Lukaku isn't contributing, he is tying up a couple of defenders, allowing others the freedom to attack. He is also frustrated at the antics of his fellow countryman with the boyband haircut who thinks it's his ball, failing to pass to others in better positions once again. He really needs this knocking out of him as he is a decent player.

I thought Swansea raised their game today, probably the ex-manager factor, but once again the spirit shone through epitomised by the outstanding Coleman. Even after their fluke equaliser, he drove forward in the teeming rain, helping to create a 2nd goal and with his attitude infecting the side, we got what we deserved. A mention for Oviedo too, the biggest compliment we can pay him is to wonder if he loses his place when the country's best left back returns! I'm glad I don't have to make the decision but I trust the great Roberto to get it right.

Steve Green
055 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:14:42
Peter Jones @ #25 - " get some proportion" you say re McCarthy, pmsl, get some glasses!
Ray Said
056 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:16:27
Did Everton win? You couldn't tell judging by Sky Sports News as they had 20 mins analysis on the Spurs match.
James Stewart
057 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:15:52
@024 Couldn't agree more. I think we would play a lot better without Mirallas in the side. Strange because at times last season he was our best player but he is garbage at present and wastes so much ball in good positions its untrue
Jackie Barry
058 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:13:31
I thought McCarthy had another great game, it's not just what he does on the ball but off it as well. I recommend those who didn't think he had a good game today pay attention to him in the next game. Remember commentators are not going to comment as much on what players do off the ball, like the closing down. My feelings on McCarthy are that the way he plays allows Barry and Barkley to function the way they do. Still he can remain a silent hero for me and go unoticed, wouldn't want anyone coming in for him too.
Neil Cremin
059 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:09:54
Obviously Peter the first, you don't know your football or your players. But your comment is however half right but not in the goals for column but goals against column.

McCarthy has protected our back four, allowing our full backs the freedom to attack. That is why we are winning games with so many attacking options while still having the best defence in the league. McCarthy is key to that as well as pushing forward when it is really necessary to take risks and go for the win. Like today.

Colin Glassar
060 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:17:21
Mick Davies, I think if Roberto does decide to put Baines right back in the mix, then he will move Oviedo ahead of him. Pienaar limped off injured but before that he was totally ineffectual and Oviedo has something Pienaar doesn't, pace.
Paul Andrews
061 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:20:49
There's more "a repeated donkey kick feint". Never heard that one before. You could take David Coleman's job, Michael. :-)
Phil Bellis
062 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:12:19
Seen them all, from Dennis Stevens, through Gabriel, the Trinity, Reid and Bracewell - McArthy is the type of player that allows "betters" to play; at his age, given his attitude, willingness to learn and maturity, the sky's the limit
Finlay Robin
064 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:17:10
Mirallas can't last 90 mins and could have put Lukaku through at least 3 times. Been the weak link in the last few games IMO. Gareth Barry is our most consistent and important player I think. Great win but it should have been much easier against a pretty toothless Swansea side.
Colin Glassar
065 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:25:35
Mirallas is a greedy sod. I hope his mate, Rom, butted him in the dressing room afterwards.
Steve Mink
067 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:30:12
Spot on Phil Bellis. McCarthy and Barry are two sitting midfielders who are seldom out-of-position, freeing up the front four and wing-backs to do what they will. It's how the better sides have played for years.
Peter Jones
068 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:30:10
062 Phil - me too mate I would say Dennis Stevens is good shout. 055 Stevie G How did you know I was visually impaired? I think that's very hurtful.
Colin Glassar
069 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:35:52
Mick Davies, I think if Roberto does decide to put Baines right back in the mix, then he will move Oviedo ahead of him. Pienaar limped off injured but before that he was totally ineffectual and Oviedo has something Pienaar doesn't, pace.
Fran Grimes
072 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:30:08
Got to mention Seamus. Had a blinder of a game and what a goal. Is there a better right back in the league right now, I don't think so.

Should be above the scum by next week. Can't wait. COYB

Mark Taylor
074 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:39:28
Mirallas seems to be the boo boy on here and while he can be a bit selfish, he is also often our most threatening player.

I don't exactly think he is pulling up trees right now but I'd be tempted to play him up front where his selfishness might be an asset and where he can hardly be less effective than Lukaku right now, who possibly needs a break.

Jon Ferguson
075 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:37:32
I don't want to focus on the negatives as I thought today's result was richly deserved... but the only under par performance for me lately has been Kevin Mirallas. Very lazy and greedy when he had a simple chance to put Lukaku through in the six-yard box!

The only reason we wont make the top 4 this season will be our lack of squad depth compared to the competition. Let's hope Martinez's "let's go for it" positivity is infectious enough to make Bill back him in January!

Steve Green
076 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:42:54
Petyer Jones @ #68 - you've fucked up again - it's Steve G, not Stevie G, that's a fuckin swear word son!
Finlay Robin
077 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:46:17
Mark Taylor 074, Lukaku barely got a sniff largely due to Mirallas taking on stupid shots. Mirallas is getting away with it because we keep winning despite him.
Peter Jones
078 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:51:13
Ray, Howard has been a different keeper since Woods joined Ginger at OT.
Brian Waring
079 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:54:17
Agree there Mark, give Lukaku a break on the bench and stick Mirallas up front.
Finlay Robin
081 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:03:16
Brian Waring 079. Drop our top scorer and replace him with our most inconsistent player who can't play 90mins??
Peter Jamieson
083 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:34:57
We are definitely contenders, but we need to invest in January.

Not enough depth on the bench for the middle or up front Naismith has only ever been average, Jelavic can't hit a cow's arse with a banjo, Osman variable, Deulofeu out for 6-8 weeks, Kone probably out the season.

If we can get a decent midfielder and forward (difficult in January), then we'll have a great chance.

Paul Rimmer
084 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:10:01
Lukaku will play. Indeed without Wes Brown he will have a field day. Take him off when he's got his hat-trick. Mirallas was infuriating but frightens defences with his pace. I would love to see Landon Donovan back to keep him on his toes in January.
Ian Bennett
088 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:17:19
Bobby doesn't fancy Jelavic, and I doubt he'll risk him getting injured. 14 months and 2 sub appearances in 3 months saids he won't start against Sunderland.
Mike T Jones
091 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:44:16
McCarthy never gets mentioned but he is fucking brilliant (excuse the Latin ). Just one hell of a footballer. Watch him and you will see. He is fucking (as before) awesome.
Peter Laing
092 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:18:26
Redknapp was a disgrace in the post match analysis, what a bitter twat with his snide comments that Moyes could have had Barkley instead of screech with the £27 million that he shelled out. Who gives Redknapp the authority to assume that Everton's most prized asset in a generation was available for sale, imagine that kind of comment about any of the other team's including Spurs. Prized twat - end of rant !
Peter Laing
097 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:30:29
Bollocks that Patrick, did you see the way Barkley celebrated after his goal and he was very level headed and composed in the interview after the game
Colin Glassar
100 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:30:28
Peter Laing, I think you're misunderstanding Redknapp Jr. He was basically saying the mancs wasted almost £30m on Fellaini when Barkley would've been the better option. He wasn't saying they'd get him for that amount. I feel slightly uneasy with all the compliments were getting lately.
Gavin Ramejkis
103 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:32:26
Patrick and Peter, Barkley himself tweeted after the game that he was happy to prove someone who doubted him wrong, not the sort of tweet you'd put out after a barney, it's shit stirring bullshit from some knob.
Patrick Murphy
105 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:34:39
Mark and Peter I agree with both of you - however it is something we are going to have to live with as the season progresses - whether it be unscrupulous agents, jealous rivals or disingenuous proprietors - as long as the lads keep getting results this kind of nonsense won't be too far away.
Doug Harris
106 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:33:20
Ross Barkley............
Yup >MOTM ...... (y)

BOOM !!!!!!!!!!

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-8qWLvfiqbyA/UrckE7eF-NI/AAAAAAAABH4/iY9ojhD_wCc/s0/22-12-2013-GifNumber-15.gif

Peter Laing
111 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:38:21
Sounds about right Mark regarding OFM, he treated Barkley like a leper last season and if it's true how he treated Rooney in his early days I wouldn't be at all surprised if Ross was having a little dig !
Tony Sullivan
113 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:00:25
I agree with Phil Bellis,a spot on comment, Dennis Stevens always attracted the kind of comments McCarthy is getting on here.
What people did not recognise in the 60s when Catterick bought him, was that he was the type of tireless player that would eventually develop into what today we call a mid fielder.
Stevens was an inside right in those days. He was one of Catterick's best signings, though he never truly got the credit for his McCarthy like displays.
Mark Tanton
115 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:41:49
Can you genuinely rule Everton (and, unfortunately... Liverpool) out of winning the league this season? I know it's dreamland and it would be against all the odds with a small and inexpensive squad - but the Premier League has never been so uncertain, so open and so interesting.
Brian Denton
116 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:49:22
No MOTD2 tonight, which is annoying. On tomorrow, which means it will all be Chelsea and Arsenal.
Peter Laing
117 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:51:25
Mark Lawrenson and David Cameron, eat shit our boys done us proud !
Patrick Murphy
118 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:51:53
Brian, I know it's a real bummer - wasn't it on the other week where only one game had taken place on the Sunday I think it may have been Spurs- there is little excuse for the BBC to have done this.
Peter Laing
119 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:53:30
Colin - Redknapp stated Moyes could have got Barkley for the money he spent on Screech; those were his words, not mine.
Mike Hughes
120 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:46:04
Sunderland up next reminds me of a similar situation circa 1985.

We were top, they were bottom.

They went 1-0 up (soon after the start I think) but we stuffed them 4-1.

That day was just about the best EFC performance I have seen.

We were like a machine.

Bracewell, Reid, Trevor Stevens, Andy Gray - all were brilliant.

I was in the Gwladys Street End that day and remember some of the passing between Bracewell, Reidy and Stevens.

Let's hope for the same again.

Nick Taylor
121 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:40:42
Cant believe people slating Mirallas on here. Yes, he could have slipped Pienaar or Lukaku in the after initially dispossessing their centre-half, but I think his main problem at the moment is he is trying too hard to be a match winner as opposed to being greedy.

You would'nt think the same player has made telling contributions against Liverpool, Man Utd and Arsenal recently.

Judging by some of the remarks you'd be forgiven for thinking he is surplus to requirements in same way Baines is now casually dismissed as transfer fodder.

Patrick Murphy
122 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:56:52
Didn't we do them 5-0 when BK had just taken over the club on Boxing Day 1999 - Poetic if it happened to be the same score and BK's last game. Not much chance of that though!
Brian Denton
123 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:58:03
Mike (120) that game is also remarkable for the fact that 1/2/3 of that months goal of the month were Everton goals from that game (Steven/Gray/Gray). That had never happened before and never happened since.
Raymond Fox
124 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:39:16
Even if it was true about players falling out, its common place in teams, you hear the old pro players talking about their team mates of old & saying such & such never got on etc, no big deal.

Agree that we badly need 2 or 3 decent new players in Jan. they obviously have to be good enough, the question is can we find them?

BK should be as excited as the rest of us, no doubt he is, & be prepared to dig deep into the coffers, because we have a very serious chance of top 4 this season, especially with some reinforcements.

Mike Hughes
125 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:01:05
Brian (123) - I didn't know that but it's not surprising. The build-up play was out-of-this-world.
Brian Denton
126 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:02:25
If we keep this up for another month, I will start thinking the thought that dare not speak its name - and that thought ain't "4th place"......
John Malone
127 Posted 22/12/2013 at 20:36:01
Mirallas needs to buck his ideas up if Deulofeu was on the pitch today we would have blown them away. I now understand why Lukaku ended up on bench for West Brom his play with back to goal is poor and his movement in the box is the same, granted he doesn't get enough service but when the ball is out wide he is static. Definitely need a striker and a winger in January, Donovan would do a job but I would like to see us start making some quality permanent signings otherwise in the summer it's back to square one. We've seen before what a good January can do and with the position we are in it's an opportunity that shouldn't be missed.

Got to mention Barry is still quality we've got to get him tied up for a couple of seasons him and McCarthy make a good partnership and do a great job protecting our defence, good base to build on.

Mike Hughes
129 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:04:49
We're 25/1 for the league - down from 250/1 in August.
This season has a strange feeling about it though.
I can't bring myself to believe we could do it yet but it's great to be up there.
Just imagine May 2014 - we win the league - and get fourth or fifth place on MoTD :)

Mark Taylor
130 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:08:12
Finlay081

Yes, because Lukaku is playing poorly right now and in among the bad decisions, Mirallas still looks more likely to score.

Wayne Smyth
131 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:32:30
Barkley might eventually leave - though I hope not - but I can't see him leave us to play for the dour-faced one who had fuck all faith in him and relegated him to the reserves for 6 months every time he made an error on the football pitch.

I think Barkley, more than anyone, appreciates being at a club who love him and playing for a manager who has enough confidence in him to give him plenty of playing time and encouragement to learn his trade.

If not, then Fellaini also serves as a very good warning that the grass is not always greener.

James Stewart
132 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:04:09
@121 Mirallas's main problem is he is brainless when he gets into dangerous positions. Infuriating and he never even bothers to look up to see if a pass is on. As I said before needs a talking to or his talent will go to waste.
Rob Lawrence
133 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:02:43
Barkley reminds me of a young zidane. We could have a gem on our hands... I hope we can keep hold of him.
Mick Davies
134 Posted 22/12/2013 at 21:57:17
Colin Glassar @100, I agree with Peter Laing, the way Redkrapp worded it was exactly how journo's all week have been reporting; in their lazy uninformed manner "Man Utd should have bought Barkley" which is treating the player himself, our club and Roberto Martinez with contempt.

Why would Ross want to go and sit on the Utd bench watching Shrek in his position, and judging by his thinly disguised tweet, he does not like the way Moyes treated him. Also, we are sitting 6 points above them and playing the type of football that suits him. This is also an insult to the manager who wouldn't be that stupid to sell a young man of his potential and the club are not in dire straits, as Man Utd are with crippling debts. I just wish dickheads would stop picking on Everton with stories of Barkley, Coleman to Arsenal, Baines etc. Why don't they speculate on Suarez to Man U or Aguero to Chelsea? Total wankers

Patrick Murphy
137 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:19:48
The FA and the Premier League should make the broadcasters agree to a code of ethics that their commentators and staff should refrain from 'touting; or suggesting that players should be plying their trade elsewhere. Commentate on the match, highlight a players inadequacies or skills by all means but leave the conjecture to the tabloids.
Brian Denton
138 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:25:57
Good luck with that one, Patrick.
Tom Bowers
139 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:16:07
Another good result after some nervy moments.

Hard to criticized any one player even Lukaku who worked hard without much to show for it.
Was in perfect position to score if Miralles hadn't been selfish.

Going into Xmas. Everton are in a great position to cement their position in the top four maybe at the expense of Redshite who may find it hard to take maximum points against City and Chelski.

Gavin McGarvey
142 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:30:24
Great 3 points. Have to say though that the live match thread and this one are distinctly lacking in Xmas spirit. This is all the more disappointing given the positive results lately. Personally as long as we're winning I'm happy, though I would balk at playing like Stoke and I don't think we're doing that. I think we're missing Deulofeu but Coleman is doing a good job of filling in. Will they be able to keep up the results over the next few games? W
Gavin McGarvey
144 Posted 22/12/2013 at 22:40:11
Post should have finished, We'll see but regardless happy times to be a blue.
Gary Creaney
152 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:05:29
Roberto 's reaction to the winner was priceless! Lip-reading he clearly said: "Yeaaaaaaassss — what a fucking goal"!!!

The wee Spanish genius.

Gavin Ramejkis
153 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:09:03
The RS gobshite that posted the twitter jackanories is getting pelters non stop for it, prick couldn't even spell Barkley's name properly - got them rattled and looking over their smug devil sponsored shoulders
Noel Early
159 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:32:02
Game at a time lads... forget all this talk about being top come January. What was evident today is we need reinforcements come January. Looked leg-weary for long spells, Lukaku needs a breather from time to time, 3 matches in 5 days coming up soon... Del Boy a serious loss for the next month.

But, in saying that, another 3 points and we didn't hit top gear.

ps: A disgrace that Coleman didn't get Man of the Match award.

Si Cooper
161 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:23:46
Two fantastic goals and a great result.

Some wet nellies on here moaning about how the nasty men keep saying really nice things about Ross Barkley just so the bullies will notice and come and sneak him away! Please get a grip.

Mirallas makes some poor decisions at times but it is ridiculous to suggest we would automatically be better off if he was dropped. He made one chance himself by working hard to press Flores.

Lukaku is still working hard and occupying defenders even when he is not actually receiving the ball. Trust the manager to know whether he is happy to soldier on or ready for a spell coming off the bench.

McCarthy had a decent game but giving him credit for an assist for Seamus's goal is technically correct but over-egging the actual contribution. His run that led to the free-kick, however, was exceptional but I think he could do that more often in games than he has been. Still more to come from the young man and that is very exciting.

We won't be considered as genuine title contenders until we have actually opened up a gap between us and the richer clubs. That isn't bias as much as it is common sense. We have a chance of winning the league but, as the playing field isn't exactly level, it is still less of one than the likes of Chelski and Citeh.

The manager himself said today all we are doing is concentrating on winning games and accumulating points and that April will be the time to really consider what we can achieve this season.

Chris James
163 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:41:20
Another amazing day, I just can't stop smiling (and reading match reports).

The best thing for me is that even when we have some bad luck, play badly or giveaway a lead we just seem to turn up a gear and try to play our way out of it. In some ways, today was even more impressive than if we'd comfortably turned them over 3-0.

Only shame is that we didn't hang on for a couple more minutes against our neighbours for a richly deserved win... we'd be looking down on them (and the rest of the Premier League) right now. Still, it's a marathon not a sprint and we don't want to hit the front too early! ;-)

Brian Denton
166 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:50:11
Si, it's not being a 'wet nelly' to take offence about the media tone re Ross ('should be with a big club', 'Moyes should buy him' etc). It's about getting annoyed when people insult our club like that. You might be of the 'get over it' brigade. I'm not.
Mick Davies
168 Posted 22/12/2013 at 23:54:46
Yes Si, having respect for our club is something everyone involved in the football world should have. We've been at the forefront of everything good in the game and on the receiving end of the bad i.e. Heysel, 2 world wars etc. So it's only right when we get money grabbing tosses like Redkrapp disrespecting OUR club
Tom Bowers
170 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:00:16
The teams above the Blues were expected to be there given the massive purchasing power they have but I think the whole football world realizes that RM has created something special from little or nothing compared to the billionaire clubs.

There is a new kid on the block and he's kicking butts.

Kevin Tully
171 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:16:17
Anyone else like to see Baines playing in front of Oviedo? Hoddle said he would put Baines in front of Cole for England down the left, and I've always thought Baines could do more damage left further up the pitch.

Baines, Barkley and Mirallas playing behind Lukaku would frighten the life out of most defences, and we could give Pienaar a rest as well.

Si Cooper
172 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:13:32
Brian, has anyone who works as a panellist actually said 'should be with a big club' or 'Moyes should buy him' or are you simply inaccurately paraphrasing something like 'great talent', 'exciting player', and possibly 'should have bought instead of....'.

None of these things are insulting or disrespectful (except for OFM who overlooked the lad last season and in the summer), unless you are determined to be insulted and/or disrespected. People are simply sitting up and taking notice of a burgeoning young player,and doing what they are paid to do which is to make comments about such things.

Would people really be happier with "Nothing much to talk about in that game, let's talk about something else."?

I am finding the constant griping very tedious.

Colin Glassar
173 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:22:21
Dear Santa,

All I want for Xmas, and the New Year, is for that Prestonian gobshyte Lawrenson to continue to predict our demise each and every game. Keep it up, Lawro, you're doing yourself proud... yer nob.

Colin Glassar
174 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:28:49
Kevin, I would put Oviedo in front of Baines and rest Pienaar.
Nicholas Ryan
175 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:21:18
Re: McCarthy. In rugby, everyone's heard of Brian O'Driscoll, but nobody's heard of Peter Stringer. BO'D only scores the tries he does, because Stringer gives him the ball, covers him, and gets it back when he loses it. The one can't function without the other: for O'Driscoll read Barkley, for Stringer read McCarthy.
Brian Denton
176 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:31:50
So Si (sounds like a Chinese meal), you have found nothing in the tone of the coverage of Ross this season which continues to reinforce the drip... drip... drip... message that ''Everton are a small club''? Well, each to their own — but I suspect you will be in a minority.

These things matter, whether it be in terms of attracting players or getting borderline refereeing decisions in your favour. I'm glad most people here don't take your acquiescent approach.

For fuck's sake, surely even you must get irritated by Evertopn FC being spoken of as a feeder club, who 'punch above their weight'? If not, then we have no point of contact. As Bob Dylan said, you go your way; I go mine.

Don Harris
177 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:37:16
Much criticism of Lukaku from comments, but have we really created chances for him recently as a team, to go forward and scare the shit out of defences? Mirallas today could have played him in, with almost tap-ins, three times.

Give him proper service, into his stride, going forward. Great team spirit, no 'fancy dans'.

Si Cooper
179 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:41:12
"Punch above their weight" - who said that? Who has stated that we are a "feeder" club. That may have been the attitude of OFM but no pundits or commentators have said those things because they would rightly be castigated if they did.

We and our players are being talked about because of the quality of football we are producing, and the team and the manager are getting a lot of deserved praise and credit.

Why get upset about the rags speculating on who may be interested in who? They do that to sell copies and it doesn't influence the people who actually make the decisions (the chairman, the manager, the players themselves).

You are getting upset over perceived slights (tone) rather than actual quotes and choosing to dwell on this rather than simply ignoring the nonsense and enjoying the good stuff. You may be in the majority, but that is only because 'misery enjoys company'.

Si Cooper
181 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:55:47
Nicholas, I must have forgotten a lot about Peter Stringer since he stopped playing because I thought I remembered about eight other guys who did the tidying up and ball recycling so that Stringer could pass it to the likes of B'OD to take the glory! ;)
Brian Denton
182 Posted 23/12/2013 at 01:00:42
My final comment re this, as it's a pointless argument. We are never going to agree. I would just point out that MOTD2, when doing its prelims before showing our game with Arsenal, had a mock-up dictionary from the rostrum camera showing a definition of the word 'Overachieve' . Not something I imagined, not something which was done in fun, but something which showed what important opinion-formers in the media think they can say about my club.

And don't you dare apply some cod-psychology about 'misery enjoying misery' to me.

Patrick Murphy
183 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:56:59
Si, of course it is best if we all ignore the silly utterances of the majority of pundits - but it does have an effect on players - perhaps not as much as it has in previous years.

When they talk about Spurs or Newcastle they constantly gush over their victories and talk about those clubs as if they have always been at the forefront of the English game, when in truth for the majority of the last 50 years they have achieved very little in comparison to Everton.

This notion has been exacerbated in the Premier League era and shows no signs of dissipating in the near future. The media have an image of Everton FC as a club and they do their utmost to promote their view of it.

If you compare the coverage of our neighbours since the start of the Premier League to the coverage that we have received in that period - if you didn't know any better you would think that we were a club comparable to Tranmere Rovers and that they were as big as Real Madrid.

Whether these constant remarks are implied or actual is not the point as it is the constant flow of it that creates a perception in the public's mind.

However, ask any genuine football supporter who regularly attends or is knowledgeable about the game and many if not most of them will have a healthy respect for Everton FC.

If by some miracle Everton FC were to become Premier League Champions in 2014 - the media's peddling of Everton as small fish in a big pond would undoubtedly continue as it has for the past 20 years. So the best way to stick two fingers up to the self-righteous, self-serving idiots is for Evertonians to get right behind this present side and see how far we can go.

Graham McCann
187 Posted 23/12/2013 at 00:55:25
Noel (159). Are you a premature Christmas, or have I had too many Bacardi's?
Bill Gall
188 Posted 23/12/2013 at 01:13:55
The development of Everton, as I said last week, is reflected in the comments of quite a number of so-called pundits that we are no longer a club that punches above its weight but genuine top 4 contenders.

Happy Christmas and may the revolution continue.

Si Cooper
190 Posted 23/12/2013 at 01:17:01
So we aren't somewhat handicapped by our lack of financial clout, Brian? Or we should be insulted by, not proud of, the fact that we have built a deserved reputation for being the 'best of the rest' in recent years and have finished above the vastly richer RS the last two?

Like you I hanker for OUR club to once again be counted as among the biggest in the country (and Europe and the world) but to choose to be slighted by what are actually compliments is pointless and rather self-pitying.

I choose to accentuate the positive even if you think that makes me a traitor of some sort.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all ToffeeWebbers!

Si Cooper
191 Posted 23/12/2013 at 01:36:11
'However, ask any genuine football supporter who regularly attends or is knowledgeable about the game and many if not most of them will have a healthy respect for Everton FC.'

That is exactly my point Patrick.

I am not interested in what the idiots lap up and believe and I don't know why anyone else is. I only have respect for those who have the sense and ability to look at the facts and make up their own mind.

Mark Taylor
194 Posted 23/12/2013 at 01:51:11
I hear Barkley's manager/agent is a relative of OFM, which fills me with foreboding.

The biggest danger of Ross leaving is having an agent who wants to collect on a big pay day and screw everything else. He needs to consider the fate of players joing supposedly 'big' clubs. Pienaar disappeared down the plughole at Spurs till we rescued him. Arteta has won nothing more at Arsenal than he would have done here. Rodwell has probably had his career destroyed by City. Fellaini is quite likely to be destroyed by Utd. We are putting Barry back on the World Cup radar, yet he was buried at City. Same with Lukaku and we may even get Delboy on the WC radar ahead of time.

Then think beyond players we have or have had who have joined 'big' clubs and have seen their career go into reverse double quick. The risk might be worth it for a player if we had absolutely no chance of CL but it seems to me we have a pretty good chance. Plus we have the best team spirit of any of the top teams.

Along with all the other internationals, we have 4 recent English internationals, 3 of whom will probably be at the WC. So Everton can be, usually is, good for your career.That's the message we need to get across.

Mick Davies
197 Posted 23/12/2013 at 02:22:50
For Ross joining Man Utd, read Rodwell at Man City; bench warming and going backwards. For some strange reason, the maladjusted young Granny topper who couldn't wait to get away from a manager he couldn't stand, is now playing like a new man under Moyes. Therefore, the position Barkley excels in is probably going to be employed for a few years to come.

So, knowing OFM's track record, he'd wait until a winger or DM is unavailable and slot Ross in, he'd be unfamiliar and out of match practice and wouldn't be enjoying or excelling, so would be benched again. He'd probably get some League Cup games but for certain, his future would suffer whereas he's already been capped at Everton.

God, I hope Ross reads these posts...

Graham McCann
198 Posted 23/12/2013 at 02:37:37
Mick (197) totally get what you are saying mate. maybe that's because I'm pissed too. COYB
Mick Davies
204 Posted 23/12/2013 at 03:54:59
Redkrapp's words were "It makes you wonder, David Moyes went and spent £27m on Fellaini when he probably could have got him. It actually shows you what a miss it was for David Moyes".

The total disregard for what Everton FC want and more importantly, what Ross Barkley wants betrays the London, ex-red media bias we have to endure and we never hear any other top 6-7 club mentioned with such contempt. If that doesn't annoy you then you haven't got Everton in your soul. I'd say what a miss it was for Barkley.

Tom Dodds
211 Posted 23/12/2013 at 05:55:43
Mick (#204)
Went right through me too, Redknapp's comment. The arrogant bias these sycophants have towards monied/Londinium clubs borders either on pea-brainwashed subservience or a more sinister hidden agenda of elitism.
Colin Glassar
215 Posted 23/12/2013 at 07:54:25
I hate the way the media treat us but, at the end of the day, it's about us as a club — who gives a flying fuck what the media say or don't?
Gavin McGarvey
218 Posted 23/12/2013 at 08:15:45
Regarding the players being affected by the media's rather condescending coverage of our beloved blues, well, I can't see it myself. One thing that Martinez seems to have spot on is our mentality. The side has struggled a bit in the last couple of games, in that they lost leads in both games, but they came right back at them.

Agree with comments saying the players don't look as fresh as they might do at the minute, but there's not much that can be done about that. I was a bit disappointed not to see any young attackers on the bench yesterday. It would be nice to see someone from the youth set up looking to break through.

John Ford
220 Posted 23/12/2013 at 08:37:55
Mick Taylor, excellent post. Clearly agents have an incentive to try to move their best players to the 'big clubs' as its a whopping payday for them.

Its easy to massage the ego and suggest to a good yound talent that his career will benefit from moving to one of the sky darlings. This seems now to be received wisdom, which is perpetuated by dullard pundits and the media at large. At very least this puts doubt in the minds of players and is a big worry for me.....file under 'getting their heads turned, I detest the thought of our club being used as a stepping stone.

Your argument against players moving is sound, but since when has logic really been enough? Only Rooney in recent times has gone on and really developed, and I firmly believe he would have done likewise had he stayed with us. Im of the opinion that only a regular champions league spot with a consistent challenge for these places will keep the vultures from our door. We know how hard this is. Im not suggesting Ross will go in the summer but if we don't stay close enough to the top table, he like other young guns will eventually move on.

Ajay Gopal
222 Posted 23/12/2013 at 08:56:20
Gavin, I heard that McAleny from the academy had been impressing, but the lad had a bad injury while out on loan – a double leg fracture, no less – and he will miss the whole season. I just hope that he comes back as strong as Barkley did after his injury.
Peter Laing
223 Posted 23/12/2013 at 08:55:02
I heard the same comments, Mick Davies, from Redknapp's mouth, word for word. People like Si Cooper evidently have a short memory: the last great asset that we had, Wayne Rooney, should serve as a reminder as to what can happen when the media start the bandwagon rolling. In fairness to Steven Gerrard, who I despise, he has actually gone on record and given Barkley advice to stay at Everton.
Andy Boyer
228 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:00:33
I lost the plot last night with Robbie Savage on Twitter last night, the gobshite tweeted that Lallana and Barkley were 2 players Man United should have signed before the window closed.

I just saw red and to my shame launched an expletive laden tirade at him, I'm just so sick of the media whores who keep saying this crap about our players, why can't they just focus on the fact that we are playing well and doing great things on the pitch, that we are looking like we back challenging like we always used to instead of trying to fulfill their own shady agendas by attempting to unsettle our players and force moves.

Savage has seriously gone down in my estimation and so has that tool Redknapp, I am just so fed up of it all......

Andy Boyer
229 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:00:33
I lost the plot last night with Robbie Savage on Twitter last night, the gobshite tweeted that Lallana and Barkley were 2 players Man United should have signed before the window closed.

I just saw red and to my shame launched an expletive laden tirade at him, I'm just so sick of the media whores who keep saying this crap about our players, why can't they just focus on the fact that we are playing well and doing great things on the pitch, that we are looking like we back challenging like we always used to instead of trying to fulfill their own shady agendas by attempting to unsettle our players and force moves.

Savage has seriously gone down in my estimation and so has that tool Redknapp, I am just so fed up of it all......

George McKane
232 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:23:57
Andy — where did Savage come down from? When was he ever "up"?

He is an absolute idiot. I do not listen to 606 anymore when he is on... anything he has to say is worthless.

Great win yesterday — 2 great gaols scored by 2 great players... great team... great Manager.

Blue Christmas to everyone, said Tiny Tim (Cahill)

Andy Boyer
233 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:34:02
I guess it was more a turn of phrase than actually thinking much of him but what a ridiculous thing to say.
Phil Sammon
236 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:40:44
Redknapp's comment had me reeling. It's like it's a foregone conclusion that Barkley would want to go there and that it would be the best thing for his career. Barkley is doing so well BECAUSE he is at Everton, playing regular football and in his rightful position.

Rodwell
Sinclair
I'll even throw Phil Jones and Chris Smalling into the list. How many times do we have to see top class potential go unfulfilled?!

Tossers!

Eugene Ruane
241 Posted 23/12/2013 at 09:36:51
Can't believe anyone (anywhere..ever) could get worked up about ANYTHING uttered by Robbie Savage.

Anyone pondering the opinions of Savage (on ANY subject) should simply consider the following.

Every single day of his life, Savage can choose to go to a barbers and say 'short back and sides'

But every single day of his life, he..doesn't.

That's all you need to know really - that the brain that comes up with his football opinion, is the same brain that each day tells him "Robbie, when you leave the house today, make sure you look just like a backward rustic Welsh farm-girl from the 1940s."

Ray Roche
242 Posted 23/12/2013 at 10:16:38
It was possibly a bit disconcerting to read the quotes from Barkley in yesterday's Times article on him, in the next to last paragraph. "We should be going for those Champions League places. That's where I want to be playing" . A clear message to the club if ever I heard one. "If we don't qualify, I'm off." — Or at least, that's how I read it. The rest of the article was good and he came across as a grounded young man, but that sting in the tail....
Barry Rathbone
243 Posted 23/12/2013 at 10:11:24
Never worry about the media, thick as mince and parasites they are... As soon as we win something, they'll be all over us saying how they knew Roberto was the man.

In the drawer marked "tired old cliches", they'll pull out "sleeping giant" and pick a comfy seat on the bandwagon.

Pricks.

Greg Mckerracher
244 Posted 23/12/2013 at 10:23:39
I think Redknapp's comments are being taken completely out of context. He was actually being respectful.

All he meant was that OFM must have known how good Ross was. He was implying that he shouldn't have wasted £26 mill (up front) with another £1m in staggered payments and £80k a week on that massive headed Belgian freakshow when he could have tried to get this gem that was playing in our reserves, and had barely signed his first pro contract (£20k a week?).

He wasn't suggesting we get these starlets ready for "bigger" clubs to come in and help themselves when they feel the time is right. I just hope he gets that contract signed with an astronomical release clause in it (aka "the Bill Kenwright pension plan" clause).

Robbie Muldoon
249 Posted 23/12/2013 at 11:04:51
The best Everton side in 30 years. Ross Barkley is better than Wayne Rooney was. Realistically we SHOULD be top of the league, those three draws at the start of the season before Martinez had brought HIS players in are a real disappointment now.

We are a pleasure to watch, it is actually breathtaking to see our lads getting pressed along the back four and, despite my shouts to clear it, they put together some intricate triangles and before you know it Barkley is bursting a lung driving at their back four. Time and time again this happens and it is real quality.

We are ready for the Champions League opponents already, let's all just cross everything to protect us from injuries. That is our only worry right now.

Great to be a blue... SIN MIEDO, MOTHER FUCKERS!!

Dean Adams
254 Posted 23/12/2013 at 11:30:36
Ray 242

Maybe Ross is just stating that he believes (along with his team mates) that we are ready to be contenders and that thanks to RM, they now have self confidence and believe that they are the real deal!!

Ray Roche
265 Posted 23/12/2013 at 12:31:32
Dean, I hope you're right, but it's easy to have a bit of a negative outlook when we bring a player through as good as Ross can be. The meeja trying to sell our best players doesn't help, either, and when you remember who is at the helm and can be bought for a silver shilling......
Paul Tran
296 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:02:50
I think some people are being paranoid about Sky yesterday.

I took it that Redknapp was implying; why did Moyes spend £27M on Fellaini when he knew about Barkley? Some of us could give an answer there.........

Good workmanlike performance yesterday. We do need to pass the ball to Lukaku. He's making the runs, he's getting into positions, he isn't being fed. We don't want him getting frustrated, unless Martinez finds us another striker in January!

Si Cooper
297 Posted 23/12/2013 at 14:40:19
Peter Laing (#223) - not a memory problem thanks, just trying to keep things in perspective and enjoy a result that leaves us 2 points off the top of the table.

I find it laughable to think that people believe that these pundits (who are paid to say something remotely interesting to the masses) are somehow directing transfer policy or that our players are actually that thick that they need an agent to point out what they could gain if they chose to move to a richer club.

As nothing much has changed since Rooney was sold in terms of the overall resources of our club then, as Ronnie Goodlass said on the radio yesterday, we are reliant on the Chairman finding some way to make it as attractive for players to stay with us as it is to go to the likes of the Manchester clubs.

The one area we have strengthened is that we have a genuinely progressive and positive manager, and we can rest assured that he will constantly be telling the players he needs why their best interests can be best served by staying with us.

Matt Traynor
301 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:14:23
Si #297 it's easy to understand why us Blues are paranoid / have a siege mentality though. Yes pundits are paid to spout opinions, often controversial etc., but there are certain journalists in certain publications who are briefed by certain clubs and / or agents to effectively court a player and unsettle him. Has happened for years, but is just more intense now.

The Premier League may be big business, but it has spawned a billion pound "support sector" as well that feeds off it. If clubs did everything quietly and the first you saw of it was a picture of the new signing with the scarf on the following day's back page, these people wouldn't earn the fantastic living they do. Hence it's in their interests to feed the frenzy.

Whilst we have the "business model" we have, we'll always be at risk. All we can do is hope the oft-mentioned Rodwell and Pienaar episodes serve to make these already vastly wealthy players consider professional happiness over more moolah.

Dave Lynch
302 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:11:42
Paul@296.

Paranoia on ToffeeWeb ! Never....

Dave Lynch
304 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:26:30
As for pundits.

Anyone who takes the remotest interest in the shite they spout should have a word with themselves.

They are always telling the punter what the opposing manager/player did/got wrong and a lot of it's so obvious a blind man on a galloping horse could spot it.

If they are that knowledgable about the game why aren't they managing themselves ?

Answer. Because they are fucking clueless.

Si Cooper
307 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:15:54
Those rotters at Sky have just pointed out we went 4th after yesterday's game and posed the question "Is it too early to ask whether Everton have a realistic shot at the title?"

This blatant attempt to point out to the big boys that we are a threat that needs neutralizing led to footage of RM's press conference where he disrespectfully (or is that cleverly, to divert unwelcome attention?) said it was too early to judge and he was just concentrating on the here and now.

Undeterred, the bounders really let the cat out of the bag by using graphics to show only Citeh have outpointed us in the last 6 games, and we have a group of fixtures coming up that we have historically done well in.

To really add insult to injury they then mentioned the story in the press about Barcelona perhaps being interested in our manager at some unspecified juncture in the future, and had the effrontery to show our manager's goodnatured response to that particular speculation.

Because of this blatantly biased reporting, which obviously underscores the media fabrication that we are somehow 'overacheiving', my literally Blue blood (which probably has the Everton crest - the old one , not the current one - imprinted on each corpuscle) is now boiling and I am preparing to send letters to my MP, the PCC and the Premier League, to complain at such an overt attempt to undermine our club and wreck our season by selling our players to the 'elite' for some 'magic' beans, and having Roberto Martinez turn into the manager of Barcelona at the stroke of midnight!

Oh, no he won't!
Oh, yes he will!
Oh, no he won't!

Where's that evil Jamie Redknapp?
He's behind everyone who isn't us!

Paul Doyle
308 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:37:47
Maybe if "Top" pundit Jamie Rosary-bead head Redknapp had watched Everton last season he would have noticed that Ginger nuts fucked Barkley around and never played him, the consensus now being that shit bag Moyses can come and cherry pick who he wants at Goodison. The media cannot have an Everton team doing well can they? So these pricks (Redknapp, Savage etc) will do there best to unsettle our players.

While bigging up the Champions elect Liverpool or Media darlings Spurs.
Stick to pouncing about on the beach in your M+S suits Jamie, lah.

Wayne Smyth
316 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:56:14
As Dave Lynch says, pundits know nothing. They start spouting the obvious a full 6 months after anyone with a few braincells and a modicum of interest has worked things out.

However, anyone who thinks we can simply ignore the media or it doesn't matter what these people say is quite simply wrong. Even if we think we actually pay very little attention to what they say.

We should all be wary when the media play us as the small time club or that we're not good enough to hold onto our players or win things. That kind of talk does eventually get at most people, including players, agents, referees, tv bosses who schedule matches etc.

The fact that the media seem to be dominated by ex-RS is also doing us no favours. They get to air their side of the story to a worldwide audience on a daily basis and push their clubs' brand at the expense of ours.

If you're someone who thinks you're above being influenced by the media, and happy to let other clubs manipulate it for their own ends then so be it. Personally, I think we need to be a bit more savvy than that. We need to compete off the field as hard as we compete on it.

There is a reason why clubs like Liverpool are still thought of as being a 'big' club and generate huge revenues to spend despite having won comparatively little over a long period of time and often finishing below us in the league. They have astute people running the club who understand about image and publicity. This helps keep up the facade of them being a big club, and generates revenues, belief etc which all goes to actually improve results.

The media may not always belittle us or put out negative stories, but it does seem that we're almost always needing to be the elephant in the room before someone takes notice.

Barkley is a good case in point. I hope he is level headed and wants to play for the club for the rest of his career, but the fact that people are publicly linking him away already is bound to sow the seeds of doubt as to whether he can achieve better things elsewhere....and who's to say the next Barkley to come through the academy is more easily swayed or less loyal?

Mike Hughes
320 Posted 23/12/2013 at 15:50:02
Regarding comments about the media, pundits and so on - absolutely right.
They're all self-serving, gravy train parasites.
The better ones are rated so based on being less irritating than others.

The worst is the loathsome Alan Green who, in between stuffing his face full of free corporate pies, manages to be both arrogant, irritating and condescending He also has the annoying tendency to call our keeper, "Tim Hard".

Savage is a product of our times unfortunately. A vain, self-obsessed knob-end who loves the sound of his own voice and would probably be on the front cover of any first edition of "Twat!" magazine.

Both of the above are kopites which is no surprise as it seems to be something of a closed shop. While I'm on the subject, I can't stand the sound of John "couldn't manage an empty room" Barnes or Jimmy "Shithouse" Case (to paraphrase the Eric Morecambe line "all the right words just not necessarily in the right order"). How does a neanderthal like Case get paid to do something for which he is clearly incompetent?

Anyway, rant over (I could go on for hours about other gobshites like Gillespie, Owen, Fowler, Quinn, Murphy, Souness, Hansen, Lawrensen et al but that would be unpleasant).

Just so I don't get "moderated" on the grounds of irrelevance, I'll state that former Everton FC legend, Peter Reid is about the best of them.

I'll also add that Everton's team development is starting to look great. It feels a bit like 1983-84 when I had that feeling we were on the brink of something really special.

Mike Hughes
322 Posted 23/12/2013 at 16:37:11
...and Ronnie Goodlass is very good as a pundit as well.
Ian Bennett
325 Posted 23/12/2013 at 16:49:33
Sunderland next up with Brown out, and doubts over O'shea and Cueller. Need to play with high intensity from the off.
Gaute Lie
328 Posted 23/12/2013 at 17:02:10
Nice goals. Free kick from Barkley was just astonishing, could not believe my eyes. Also Howard had a strong game. As he usually does IMO.

1 st half was dreadfull. They didn't seem to know what to do going forwards, like they hadn't played together before. Defence was good, though. Lucky Swansea wasn't more threatening.

One thing that pisses me off here I Norway is papers is on about Liverpool and Suarez all the time. The fact that Everton is most tight at the back end is never mentioned, the fact we only lost one game.. well. Everton is like a shadow in the papers here. You know it's around, but can't really see it. So I mean the publicity guys should know what a good product EFC is, and sell it. Make sure journalists all over know what team is currently in 4th place, and why. It should not be that hard to sell such a quality product, should it?

Happy Christmas to all of you from a fan in Norway

Thomas Lennon
330 Posted 23/12/2013 at 17:16:03
The only snag about recalling us playing well in 1984 is that I am pretty sure there weren't 6-8 clubs that had up to three times our wage bill with which to weather the inevitable injuries & suspensions. But no matter - its about the 11 on the pitch as long as they stay fit. Trying to keep it real!
Mike Hughes
332 Posted 23/12/2013 at 17:24:12
Gaute #328

"One thing that pisses me off here I Norway is papers is on about Liverpool and Suarez all the time. - See more at: http://www.toffeeweb.com/season/13-14/comment/reports/26350.html#contribute"

To be fair, Norway is Liverpool's core fan base.

Mike Hughes
334 Posted 23/12/2013 at 17:27:54
Gaute #328

...whenever I have the misfortune to meet a Liverpool fan over here, I always welcome them to England and tell them to drive on the left hand side of the road.

A Merry Christmas to you :)

Dennis Ng
337 Posted 23/12/2013 at 17:47:54
Gaute, tell me about it. It's almost all red (rs or manu) in Singapore. This is a wonderful season! Could use climbing over rs for the new year.

Thomas, did you forget that we were also banned from European footy from 1985-1990? When we were champions 2 out of the first 3 banned years?

Andrew Keatley
348 Posted 23/12/2013 at 18:22:16
Robbie (249) - while Barkley is showing all the signs of being one of the very best young footballers on the planet, I think saying that he is better than Rooney is a tad premature. I don't know if you mean currently or all things considered, but I think it's fair to say that the impact that Rooney has had - especially as a young player - is far greater than that of Barkley. We are still talking about potential with Ross, Martinez says that himself. His potential is at the very top end of the scale. Let's hope we can look back in fifteen years time and say that he was a better footballer than Wayne Rooney, and that he did it all while playing at Everton. If that's the case then as a club we'll have had a very good fifteen years indeed.
Brian Denton
353 Posted 23/12/2013 at 19:41:17
There's a long, long, way to go before we can say Ross is better than Wayne Rooney. Rooney (IMO) has delivered on his earlier promise as one of the best English players certainly in my memory, and my memory goes back a good few years. I just hope Bill and Roberto between them can deliver a team which will mean our young players stay. To lose one 'once in a lifetime' player can be viewed as unfortunate; to lose two would look like carelessness.
Wayne Smyth
386 Posted 23/12/2013 at 23:20:37
Brian I think Barkley and Rooney share something which all great attacking players have....a certain arrogance with the football. Epitomised by Barkley's repeated feinting to kick the ball at the weekend near the Swansea area. Reminded me of the Rooney hands on hips incident all those years ago.

I do think that fitness permitting, Barkley will go on to be one of, if not the best English footballer of his generation, just as Rooney was his. I'm not quite sure who will end up being judged the better....although I do think that years of being shoved out on the wing has hampered Rooney's talent.

I think under Roberto we're showing real signs of taking the next step to getting Champions League football and maybe having the correct attitude to win trophies. Given that he's clearly a man who has faith in developing the young talent at the club, I think we have the potential for a golden generation to come through and it looks like he's happy to add a few loanees temporarily to fill any quality gaps.

Watching the Swansea game was interesting. They had more of the ball than us, and looked a very good side, despite not actually have many players who'd have walked into our team.

Made me think that they've effectively been playing Roberto's system for years, and made me wonder if we might see similar improvements in our own play over the next couple of seasons because individually we have a better standard of footballer.

Rahman Talib
407 Posted 24/12/2013 at 07:17:35
If we keep bypassing Lukaku, then we should just return him to Chelski. I mean, we could've gone two up before half time if Mirallas had simply passed the ball to Lukaku.

Rahman Talib
433 Posted 24/12/2013 at 10:09:07
There was at least two occasions where a simple pass to Lukaku would have made us two goals ahead before the Coleman goal.

But, it looks to me that there's a conspiracy not to pass to Lukaku. As a result our fullbacks and defenders are doing the scoring. When will this madness end?

Graham McCann
786 Posted 25/12/2013 at 21:35:28
Just been watching Match of the Day 2. Martin Keown was very complimentary about Everton, going as far to say that they are the best team he has seen this season. Also, he added that he thinks that they can go all the way. Also Carragher is very complimentary about us (must add that Gary Neville did say that the former Red is a bluenose). We are getting credit, it is just taking a while for the media cartel to finally realise that we are the real deal. It's all a bit scary now.
Dennis Ng
790 Posted 25/12/2013 at 21:40:59
Rahman, I think that happened because Lukaku took all the attention from the wings. It's a good thing. I would love him to score but 3 points is more important. And he will get his moment sooner or later.

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