Martinez hails Robles after win over Bournemouth

, 20 February, 87comments  |  Jump to most recent

Roberto Martinez has described Joel Robles as magnificent following his crucial penalty save in today's 2-0 victory in the FA Cup.

The Spaniard made his sixth consecutive appearance when the Blues travelled to Dean Court for the Fifth Round tie and was the only thing standing between Bournemouth's Charlie Daniels and the opening goal after 37 minutes.

Robles guessed the right way and pushed the spot kick away to keep the scoreline goalless and allow Everton to improve in the second half and then win the tie with goals from Ross Barkley and Romelu Lukaku.

In truth, Robles was otherwise largely untroubled as the Blues resisted the Cherries' attempts to get back into the contest after Barkley's deflected shot had handed them the lead 10 minutes after half time.

He was well-positioned to stop Dan Gosling's point-blank header from six yards and smartly claimed a dangerous cross from the Bournemouth right late in the game but the Blues' defence repelled most of what was thrown at them, protecting their goalkeeper from being called upon too often.

Nevertheless, while he was disappointed with his side's first-half display, Martinez was full of praise for Robles who has seized his opportunity in Tim Howard's absence to stake his claim for the first-choice goalkeeping spot at Everton. The 25-year-old has now kept six clean sheets in all competitions this season and has helped the Toffees build a recent run of just one defeat in five games since the disappointing League Cup exit at the hands of Manchester City.

"I thought in the first half we were really good working off the ball but on the ball it was probably the worst performance that we've had this season," the manager said in his post-match press conference. "I thought we were very sloppy, we couldn't use the spells that we had on the ball into threatening possession and that was very disappointing.

"Obviously the penalty arrives in an isolated situation. It's a corner that we don't deal with and it gets awarded as a penalty, and rightly so.

"That's where we saw a special performance from Joel Robles. I thought it was magnificent how he controlled the moment and he's enjoyed being the goalkeeper at Everton. He's worked behind the scenes for a long, long time and it was pleasing to see that sort of performance.

"I have to highlight the role that Tim Howard had in that. Since he picked up the injury he's been an incredible influence on Joel to allow him to be relaxed and allow him to be calm."

Game management pleases the boss

In his comments immediately after the final whistle, Martinez expressed his satisfaction with the way that his players handled the contest with a 2-0 lead. Back in November, the Blues surrendered the same advantage in the Premier League game at Vitality Stadium and eventually had to settle for a 3-3 draw when they relinquished another advantage at 3-2.

There was a determination not to allow that to happen again this time and Everton were able to keep the clean sheet and coast through the final minutes with both goalscorers allowed a rest.

"In the League we came here and got a 2-0 lead and we couldn't manage the game at that point. [Today] I thought we managed the game really well and probably with a more clinical pass or a more clinical move we could have got another goal.

"But to keep another clean sheet, it keeps that consistency that we've had in the last four performances and with this one that's a really good test."


Reader Comments (87)

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Andrew Presly
1 Posted 21/02/2016 at 00:22:21
It would be great if this had been the post match interview after having progressed from the second leg Europa League Round of 16 tie in Kiev last season. That game where Howard made the goal look thrice the regulation size.

I suppose the phrase is "better late than never"?

Peter Norris
2 Posted 21/02/2016 at 00:39:43
No point looking back Andrew. Let’s look to the future and push on from here.
Anthony Lamb
3 Posted 21/02/2016 at 00:43:23
Quite amazing how the apparent "love affair" between the manager and Tim Howard continues even when he is out of the side. Would it not have been sufficient to simply congratulate Robles on his performance without the implication that, even though he was not on the pitch, Howard somehow contributed to the fine penalty save and the performance???

If Howard has been encouraging Robles in what goes on behind the scenes, then of course it is to his credit, who knows. But it still smacks of the manager refusing to acknowledge in any sense that Howard has not performed well for a long time and simply cannot resist the opportunity to keep Howard in "the public’s eye" at all costs.

This loss of form happens, footballers are people, not Rolls Royce engines. There is no need to camouflage it. But yet again we get the usual inane hyperbole such as Howard "has been an incredible influence on Joel allowing him to be relaxed and allow him to be calm".

It suggests Howard is more of a sedative than a goalkeeper. While he was at it why not carry on with highlighting the role of goalkeeping coaches, fitness staff, "sports psychologists" keeping Robles calm while sitting and watching Howard’s decline this season etc?

Just congratulate Robles and let the lad bask in a little of his own glory, however temporary it may be!

Don Alexander
4 Posted 21/02/2016 at 01:04:52
He really does talk some shit! By any measure our best victories this season (can’t be bothered researching 2014-15) have come in games where we’ve had less than 50% of his holy grail, "possession". Our worst performances have come where we’ve "dominated" it, the more "domination" resulting in the worst of the numerous unacceptable results.

This tells us one of two things; either our players aren’t talented enough to know what to do with a football at their feet (and that cannot be true given our wins with less possession), or he is unable to coach them to victory even if they succeed in complying with his fetish for possession.

Other top clubs do not tolerate season after season of unchanging tactics that produce no upturn in success.

But we do.

Even if he now gets us into a Europa League position in the league it’ll only reinforce my anger at what might have been but for his repetitive stupidity.

If we win the FA Cup I’ll take a trip to the Town Hall steps............... in fact, I’d be glad to.

Phil Davies
5 Posted 21/02/2016 at 01:05:40
I’d say Joel’s got three months to prove himself. Howard should be gone by next season and we’ll need another keeper... Question is: starter or backup?
Stewart Lowe
6 Posted 21/02/2016 at 01:10:01
Joel never looks confident enough in goal; will Martinez ever tell him to stop punching balls when he could clearly catch them? Far too many times he flies out and punches it and it's all for effect.
Brian Porter
7 Posted 21/02/2016 at 01:13:00
Well said, Anthony (#3). I thought exactly the same on reading Martinez’s words. My first thought was, why does he have to spoil a special moment for Joel Robles by sucking up to Tim Howard as if he had some direct bearing on Joel’s ability to make the save?

It was a terrific save that kept us in the game and the credit, the whole credit and nothing but the whole credit belongs to Robles, not being a shared experience with bloody Howard. When Lukaku was scoring freely before Christmas did Martinez say how Stephen Naismith helped so much by being there in training or on the bench to help Lukaku feel calm and focussed when taking his opportunities?. Same sort of thing Roberto.

I just think he’ spoiled a great moment for Robles by diluting his praise and trying to somehow make Howard a part of Robles’s achievement. Please just shut up and go away, Roberto.

Oh yes, bloody well done Joel. Great save lad. First time this season our keeper had me out of my seat thumping the air. Who’d have thought it just a few weeks ago?
Anthony Dwyer
8 Posted 21/02/2016 at 02:04:06
Agree 100% Phil.
Rahman Talib
9 Posted 21/02/2016 at 02:32:55
Lukaku benefited so much being trained by Big Dunc.
Jamie Crowley
10 Posted 21/02/2016 at 03:26:12
So Roberto pays homage to a veteran who, judging by the comments made by the gaffer, has been encouraging and has assisted his understudy take the reins. In short, he's been the consummate teammate and professional.

Jesus, that's just awful! Take the fucking charlatan out back and flog him! How dare he say such a thing!

Where's Jim Hardin?

Anto Byrne
11 Posted 21/02/2016 at 03:39:47
It's to Tim Howard's credit that he is supporting Joel Robles and has probably realised his time at Everton is up. It was a great penalty save and he was up on his feet in a flash.

When he goes for a cross and misses it, we still need defenders on the goal-line, and they still got a couple of free uncontested headers in the box, so there is still a lot of improvement at the back to come.

Lennon was not as effective as in previous games. How well did Distin play he looks a lot fitter and for a 38-year-old still has a lot of pace, Lukaku got away from him for his goal so perhaps it was the right time for him to move on. I noticed how all the Everton players went up to him at the end and there was massive smiles all round.

Mike Gaynes
12 Posted 21/02/2016 at 03:49:25
Well said, Jamie (#9), only not strongly enough.

The idea that Roberto is somehow "diluting" his praise and "spoiling" Robles’s great moment by mentioning Howard’s mentorship is sheer, blathering idiocy... the sort of thumb-sucking pop psychology that would make a basset hound roll his eyes.

Howard is a pure class guy... has never been anything but class... and does anybody doubt for a moment that he would give his pure, unstinting support to Robles?

Stewart (#6) is partly right that Joel has always looked a bit nervous, but I think he looks more calm and confident now, and if the manager says Howard has helped make that happen, why do you doubt it?

And Joel Robles, for his part, appears to be a great and very modest kid who has the genuine affection of his teammates (evidence their reactions to the penalty save). Do you really think the manager’s two little sentences crediting Howard’s help will ruin anything for him? Utterly and patently ridiculous.

I still have questions about whether Joel Robles is our future #1 for the reason Stewart cited – he’s even more lost on high balls than Howard ever was – but I’m looking forward to watching him establish himself. And if Timmy is his de factor keeper coach, all the better.

Mike Gaynes
14 Posted 21/02/2016 at 04:03:25
And Brian (#7), if Howard didn’t get you out of your seat with his MotM performance against Man City just five weeks ago, you’re a hater, pure and simple.
Peter Barry
15 Posted 21/02/2016 at 05:09:16
Everton persist in their idiotic desire to ’posses’ a game to victory. This Martinez fetish with possession over performance and results gives rise to all the boring backwards and sideways ’tippy-tappy’ crap that we see in every Everton game these days.
Peter Barry
16 Posted 21/02/2016 at 05:11:16
Why do all the Americans posting on TW feel the desperate need to defend the Startled Starfish all the time?
Steven Jones
17 Posted 21/02/2016 at 05:28:34
Joel Robles looked very aware too when coming out to breakaways, which Tim rarely does.

There is more confidence to the defence and less likelihood for us to have heart wrenching cock-ups between goalkeeper and centre-backs.

Brian Porter
18 Posted 21/02/2016 at 05:51:43
I don’t recall Tim saving a penalty against Man City, Mick.
Tony Draper
19 Posted 21/02/2016 at 05:56:46
I like young Joel Robles, he is not the complete article, but then, in the lifespan of ’keepers he is still an apprentice.

I like Tim too. He’s been bloody good for us for a long time, but, I think that we have failed him in two very serious ways:

1) WE should have established him as a US National Hero; it would have paid his wages numerous times over and in so doing made Everton the Premier League club that US kids want to play for. He became a US Hero almost accidentally.

2) We really needed to supply him with the best goalkeeper coaching, because he really isn’t far short of being a true great....

He has stacks of natural ability and, as a consequence, when he falls short, he gets treated like a local lad.

Tim Howard isn’t as good as he could be and, unless Joel Robles gets better coaching, he won’t become as good as he really should be.

When it comes to all maters "goalkeeping", there will always be debate, simply because they are the last line of defence. Surely, if we need the best to coach our keepers, then Big Nev must have a part to play? But no... The truth is that Big Nev, despite being the very greatest ’keeper in the World, isn’t a gifted coach.

So does that mean that he has no part to play?Surely a few sessions occasionally with "The Six Yard Dragon" would benefit our ’keepers? It wouldn’t make ’em worse would it?

Gary Russell
20 Posted 21/02/2016 at 06:20:56
Some of the USA Evertonians on here will not hear a bad word said about Tim Howard. It matters not one iota where a player is from but how he performs and I’d guess 80/90% of us agree he should have been long gone. It's RM’s fault more than anything for inflicting the agony for all concerned with his constant inclusion since last season.

When will the agony end? When Roberto evolves and learns, which is highly unlikely. I can’t help think what the players are feeling and thinking through all of the last two seasons. They have to work with the guy...

We heard mutterings about the Distin issue, Mirallas also seems to be out of favour (of which he doesn’t do himself any), and now we hear whisperings of Baines getting frozen out.

We are not born... we are tortured!

Michael Kenrick
21 Posted 21/02/2016 at 06:42:29
We are not born... we are tortured!

Our new unofficial motto there, Gary. Hits home with more poignant accuracy than that "It's the hope that kills you" – which I could never get any feeling for.

Gary Russell
22 Posted 21/02/2016 at 07:02:57
Indeed Michael and thanks for the grammar tweaks. Apologies also for some of my posts that rightly or wrongly don't make it. Never a good idea to pound the keyboard wearing my red wine underpants and my Guinness goggles, a feeling some of us know all too well.
Tony Abrahams
23 Posted 21/02/2016 at 07:08:43
Or even born to be tortured, Gary! So true mate.

Mike (#12), does Tim do a lot of work for charity that goes un-noticed?

I respect Howard for getting to the top, whilst suffering from Tourette’s, which must surely affect his concentration. He’s also the great American hero, after his exploits in the last World Cup but I don’t for one minute think he’s in touch with the common people, which is the real sign of a pure class person to me.

Is Joel good enough? I’m not sure, but I thought he was one of the worse keepers I had ever seen until he got a run in the team last year. His improvement has been massive, and he’s also a man mountain with a big physical presence – he looked huge in his goal for the pen!

Gary Russell
24 Posted 21/02/2016 at 07:30:00
Is Joel good enough, Tony? I was gonna write about goalkeepers a few weeks back but never got round to it. It must be the most difficult position when one mistake can make all the difference. Robles is still young and until he gets a good run, we will never know.

People have said we missed out on Butland. He was very erratic for a few seasons and many keepers are. They need to play consistently to gain confidence or have it eroded, whatever the case may be, performance wise.

He deserves to see the season out. It can’t be easy sitting there month after month, year upon year and watching your so-called superior playing less than stellar and not getting a shot. Yes, they get a nice wage but most want to play surely. The mini runs he has had in the team, for me, are positive so let's see where we are come May, with him still hopefully between the sticks.

Darren Hind
25 Posted 21/02/2016 at 07:39:40
Difficult to know how good/ bad Joel actually is. By persevering with the woefully inept Howard, Martinez has not only stunted his progress, he has destroyed our season... and very possibly his own career.

Jim Hardin will no doubt come along shortly to support the views of Mike and Jamie, but the evidence is becoming overwhelming: after spending the entire season defending like Keystone cops, we are now looking solid, keeping clean sheets.

There is a very good reason Robles does not have as much to do as Howard: he concentrates, focuses, he does what all good goalkeepers should do, he communicates with the men in front of him. Goalkeepers see everything, their view is unique, nothing goes on behind them. The very best of them will pull their defenders here there and everywhere. Howard simply walks up and down his line trying to counter his sleep disorder by kicking fuck out of his posts.

Sanity has finally prevailed. Howard is out. The arrogance with which he has dismissed the views of his critics, is now being laid bare. Even if Robles turns out to be distinctly average, he is still a massive improvement. Thank goodness Howard has shown his "class" by "allowing" Joel to be relaxed and calm.

It wasn't always this way; before his arrogant outburst's Howard was a popular figure amongst the ranks, chants of USA USA were common place. He was never brilliant, but fans tend to overlook mistakes if a player is contrite and shows he wants to put it right. They will never tolerate being told that they don't know what they are talking about.

Ernie Baywood
26 Posted 21/02/2016 at 08:01:16
I was full of superlatives for Joel’s penalty save but Roberto managed to top even my "cracking save, nice one, Joel" comment.

Roberto on the penalty...
"A special performance from Joel Robles. I thought it was magnificent how he controlled the moment."

Jim Bennings
27 Posted 21/02/2016 at 08:56:23
Big, commanding, comes for crosses, seems to command respect from his defenders and actually seems passionate about winning!

Joel Robles appears to be everything that Tim Howard is NOT at this present moment.

Peter Carpenter
29 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:34:09
Tim has helped this season. He’s shown very clearly how not to do it.

Late on in the second half, Robles anticipated a low ball across the 6-yard box, dived out for it, and held it. Poor Tim, 2015-16 model, would probably have stayed on his line hoping for the best.

Thanks Tim, but to quote Roy Orbison, "It’s oooooover...."

Now going to spend the rest of the day controlling some moments...

Tony Draper
30 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:36:17
Gary @23, as I said earlier at just #25, Joel really is very junior for a proper ’keeper.

Big Nev had more than a few crap games for us when he was contesting "the magnificent" Jim Arnold for the right to wear Everton's Number One jersey.

What Joel does have is that extra quality, namely, command. Won’t make an ordinary ’keeper a superb one, but it does make the difference between the top ’keepers and the elite.

Peter Mills
31 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:38:00
I was at a Q&A session with Neville Southall last season, and asked him what he thought of Roberto’s decision to drop Robles after keeping 3 clean sheets.

"It’s rubbish, isn’t it? He’s destroyed the lad – he’ll be on his way in the summer."

Neville got it half-right. It was rubbish, perverse, and has held us back this season. But it didn’t destroy the lad; Joel kept his head, performed well when called on, and now has a chance to really stake his claim for the future. Good for him.

Colin Metcalfe
32 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:39:09
Let's hope he stays there and proves his No 1 status. I am quite happy for Howard to spend the rest of his Everton career on the bench until he he goes off into the MLS sunset.

The penalty save was brilliant and the save that he cut out along the six-yard line was a brave one – something Howard would've completely fucked up!

Kevin Elliott
33 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:40:18
Well, according to Mr Shearer, who was in the studio, it wasn’t a very good save at all because it was at a perfect height for the keeper.

Not like him to detract from anything Everton, eh?

Christopher Timmins
34 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:43:55
Joel Robles may not prove to be the long term solution but he deserves to play in the final 12 Premier League games in order to demonstrate his worth.

If Howard plays again, it should be in the final 15 minutes of the final league game as a goodbye gesture.

Rob Hooton
35 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:44:48
Hopefully we will get the rest of the season to see how Joel does. He looks like he still has a lot to learn but, bloody hell, he is a big lad with a presence and he has kept a remarkable number of clean sheets in the games he has played. (Any stattos out there with figures?) Even if he is a ’lucky’ keeper, that will do for me!
Oliver Molloy
36 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:46:07
"That’s where we saw a special performance from Joel Robles. I thought it was magnificent how he controlled the moment and he’s enjoyed being the goalkeeper at Everton. He’s worked behind the scenes for a long, long time and it was pleasing to see that sort of... "

I cannot believe he really understands what he says. He likes to talk and the more he does the more crap comes out of his mouth.

Robles guessed correctly and saved the penalty, and now he’s the greatest thing since sliced-bread!

Come out and say that Howard has made so many errors this last couple of seasons that you should have made the goalkeeper situation a priority – Robles should have stayed in the team when he was performing better than Howard; I for one would have more respect for you.

The reason Howard has been dropped is either someone at the club has had a word with Martinez, or he himself had finally realised that, if he treats Evertonians as fools, it will be his downfall.

As I have said many times – I desperately want Martinez to succeed but when he keeps coming out with all this over-the-top crap, I desperately want him gone.

Duncan Lennard
37 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:47:03
Great penalty save but I still can’t believe three or four Bournemouth players got to the rebound before a single white shirt. It was purely the fact they got in each other’s way that stopped them scoring from it. It's that kind of lack of sharpness, focus, call-it-what-you-will, that is continually finding us out under the present regime.
Peter Carpenter
38 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:49:28
I can report that I have just shown incredible maturity in controlling a moment involving two slices of bread and a toaster – phenomenal!
Kevin Elliott
39 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:56:57
Careful with the butter knife, Peter.
Peter Carpenter
40 Posted 21/02/2016 at 09:59:33
Tim has been an incredible influence in allowing me to be relaxed and calm with the butter knife in my hand.
Tony Abrahams
41 Posted 21/02/2016 at 10:01:47
Duncan, I don't know what they do in training, but if they play loads of possession football, I do think it does take away some focus, from the two most important things on a football pitch.

Scoring goals, and not conceding goals, are the two most important things when it comes to playing football. Possession is great, when you have got a purpose, but if that's your main aim, then I'm sure it must take concentration away from more serious matters sometimes.

Kevin Elliott
42 Posted 21/02/2016 at 10:03:39
Breakfast just wouldn’t be the same without him, Peter.
Michael Penley
43 Posted 21/02/2016 at 10:08:00
Breaking news: Martinez has today revealed that Tim Howard is actually a Jedi Master, allowing him to directly control Robles’s body from the bench when he made the save.
Trevor Peers
44 Posted 21/02/2016 at 10:19:56
We have improved defensively – I never thought I’d be able to say that! Robles has a huge presence, his enthusiasm is infectious.

Take Roberto’s after match comments with a pinch of salt, and you can actually feel a bit of confidence filtering through your veins, in away games at least.

The biggest challenge for Roberto is to get the team playing well at home, if he is to convince us he can be a half-decent manager. The last two seasons at home, he’s been an absolute failure... and I’ve no idea how he can put things right. Maybe by adding class players with a genuine goal threat ?

Ray Robinson
45 Posted 21/02/2016 at 10:25:15
I’m not sure yet how good Robles actually is but I think that he should be given time to demonstrate his ability with an extended run.

But, purely from a psychological point of view, he looks bigger and more imposing and thereby just appears harder to beat. He’s quicker off his line, more vocal and has better distribution too.

Terry Underwood
46 Posted 21/02/2016 at 11:34:29
Only saw the game on TV, but, from what I saw, Rom was getting frustrated. Passing and keeping the ball is all very well, but there has to be an end product. Anybody can play the ball into a gap, it doesn't have to be Ross, just because he is the link up man.

We saw Rom's pace on one occasion. Give him the ball!!! If 5 passes get cut out, so what? The 6th will get through. We can forgive attacking passes getting intercepted, but at least TRY!
Oscar Huglin
48 Posted 21/02/2016 at 13:07:09
I think criticism of this interview is very unfair. Everything Bobby said here was completely true and honest, and it's refreshing to read an interview where he's highlighted our failures in the game (our poor play on the ball in the first half), especially a game we ended up winning quite comfortably. Earlier this year I doubt there would have been a negative to be found in this interview... You can just imagine what he might have said about that dire first half: "In the first half we managed to break up their play magnificently and showed incredible composure on the ball. I was delighted to see that translate to two goals in the second half".

He's learning, and that can only be good for us.

As for the comment about Howard, of course he's having an influence on Robles. As much as so many of you lot hate him, he's still a hugely experienced 'keeper who appears to love the club. I have no doubt he'll be support Robles and helping him through this period, and it's right for Martinez to highlight that.

Let's just hope Bobby's finally decided to give the permanent number one spot to Joel. We're much better for it.

Jamie Crowley
49 Posted 21/02/2016 at 13:19:00
Some of the English Evertonians on here will not hear a good word said about Tim Howard. It matters not one iota where a player is in his career path, or how he’s performed over said career never mind five weeks ago.

Howard should definitely be our second keeper, but his influence with his many years experience on young Joel should be welcomed and recognized.

We are born... Ultimately to be tortured by "the bitter ones".

Find some sunshine... in Blighty, many of you need it.

Jamie Crowley
Joel backer and Howard aficionado

John Davies
50 Posted 21/02/2016 at 13:40:56
Martinez is simply incapable of commenting on anything after a game without spouting total rubbish and running his mouth off with his scientific, deeply thoughtful brand of complete bollocks.

The guy is a clown who cannot just keep things simple (rather like his defensive tactics). Why does he still have a job at our club?

All I want to see now from the rest of our season is for the twat to be shown the door. Sorry, people, but we won't win the FA Cup and whilst I don't want us to be beaten in the competition, I just want Martinez Out! This is torture !!!

Victor Jones
51 Posted 21/02/2016 at 13:54:06
I remember Robles making a few decent saves in his Wigan days. I am sure that he alone kept them in a few matches. He had the makings of being a half-decent goalkeeper. But ultimately the Martinez philosophy concerning non-defending led to Wigan conceding numerous goals. Robles and the other lad (I think it was Al Habsi) had no chance with that team. De Gea would have conceded goals in that Wigan shambles; most keepers would. Robles looked poor in his first few games for Everton. The poor showing against Krasnodar springs to mind. But that can all be forgiven. He had no match practise. His cameo appearances last season were good. And just look at the difference that he is now making.

The attacking play (at times) is slow and laboured. But there is no question that the defence has tightened up. Robles has to be given a huge slice of credit for that. Shame that Martinez did not start playing Joel around November. We just might have found ourselves in a very interesting league position. All conjecture.....yes. But who knows?

Just a little curve ball here... My top 5 Everton keepers. I can only pick from those that I have seen, and this is just my own humble opinion. And I stress that some of these keepers made an impression on me as a youngster.

Neville SouthallGordon WestNigel MartynGeorge Woods and (wait for it).......David Lawson.

Not a Tim Howard in sight... and far to early to judge Robles. Pat Jennings would have been great for Everton, but unfortunately he was collecting a pension when he signed for the Toffees.

Steve Harris
52 Posted 21/02/2016 at 14:17:47
Martinez's ridiculously bizarre comments makes me think he's the new David Icke!!
Oscar Huglin
54 Posted 21/02/2016 at 14:27:01
Steve, read it again without your "I hate Martinez and Howard" goggles on. It's a good interview, you're being blinkered.
Gary Russell
55 Posted 21/02/2016 at 14:28:55
Oscar... give it a rest. Are you a Catalan, whose dad is called Roberto and you have fixation for brown shoes and brown bullshit? Or is it something else?
Dave Lynch
56 Posted 21/02/2016 at 14:39:45
"We are born... Ultimately to be tortured by the bitter ones."

50-odd years supporting and following all over Europe my "local" team, to be called " bitter" by some yank who has in the great scheme of things been supporting the club for 5 minutes.

I take offence at the "bitter" comment, pal...

Dave Abrahams
57 Posted 21/02/2016 at 15:17:54
We still don’t know if Robles is going to be our Number One, but he is steadily getting better. I’d keep Howard away from Robles if I was Martinez, what can he possibly learn from him?

As for the goalkeeping coaches at Finch Farm, they have done nothing to improve Timmy over the last couple of seasons; if I was Robles, I’d be giving them a wide berth as well.

Mike Gaynes
59 Posted 21/02/2016 at 16:24:12
Tony (#22), yes, Howard has been extremely active in charity work for children with Tourette’s, helping strip away the shame of the affliction. He was named Humanitarian of the Year back in his MLS days and serves on the board of a charity that focuses on elementary education.

He has been doing this in his home states of New Jersey and Texas, so you wouldn’t have been aware of it in the UK.

Mike Gaynes
60 Posted 21/02/2016 at 16:37:28
Dave (#53) – "What can he possibly learn from him?"

What can a keeper with 20 Premier League appearances learn from a keeper with nearly 400? Plus 100 international caps and a couple of World Cups?

Are you kidding with this?

Mike Gaynes
61 Posted 21/02/2016 at 16:47:36
Peter Barry (#15), yes, I’m a Yank, but even Yank English should be understandable, so read my post again.

What I was defending was Roberto’s comment about Howard helping Joel.

Phil Smith
62 Posted 21/02/2016 at 16:48:45
Thought that result goes some way to exorcise some demons from the last time we were there. Professional performance and should have been three goals.

On another note, I can totally see why we sold Duffy to Blackburn. Oh dear...

Steve Davies
63 Posted 21/02/2016 at 17:07:51
Tim Howard in his day was an OK goalie, not great, just OK. Unfortunately his day is gone. Age catches up with all players. He didn’t do himself any favours by having a go at the crowd but I am sure he is a nice bloke and does lots of charity work etc....

The problem I had this season was with Martinez for picking an out-of-form player. It wasn’t Howard’s fault he was getting picked. It was the same with Barry last season; if they are not performing, you drop them. It is that simple.

If Roberto keeps bigging up Robles then we will have another Stones situation where Stones (and I like the lad) thinks he is better than he really is. He is a developing talent.

I just wish Martinez would stop talking drivel... I did not see the point of even mentioning Howard in his post match summary. Would he have mentioned any other player? RM just does not do himself any favours......

Great support yesterday by the Blues away contingent.

Liam Wilson
64 Posted 21/02/2016 at 17:22:29
Victor... I would have included Andy Rankin, the only 'keeper I have ever seen who could bend backwards in mid-air when making a save. He also played for Watford, coincidentally.
Paul Ferry
65 Posted 21/02/2016 at 17:37:25
I actually feel a little for Tim Howard sitting yesterday in the dug-out hearing our brill away fans singing the Robles song with the line about his good self should fuck off home to America.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to see him ever pull on an EFC shirt until the last minute of the last home game of the season to get a round of applause for his efforts in the couple of years either side of 2010.

Dave Abrahams
66 Posted 21/02/2016 at 17:48:47
Mike (#56) – you tell me what he can learn from Howard?

I can’t think of anything, except he will definitely learn from his dozens of mistakes.

Mike Gaynes
67 Posted 21/02/2016 at 18:47:49
Dave #60, give it a rest, if he had made "dozens" of mistakes he wouldn’t have played that many games for Moyes, who was notoriously intolerant of mistakes. Stop shoveling crap.

As for what he could teach Robles, RM says he has helped keep him calmer and more confident, and Joel has certainly looked more of both recently. Maybe you think RM is making that up?

Plus until last season Howard was statistically ranked as one of the best penalty stoppers in the world – I still remember the look on that bastard Kuyt’s face, even if you don’t – and who knows, maybe he gave Robles a hint or two.

You and I will never know, unless of course the manager tells us, which he has. You think he’s lying? That’s your choice.

Dave Abrahams
68 Posted 21/02/2016 at 20:31:41
Mike (64) " stop shovelling crap"

I'll start with your post and leave it on the floor.

Steve Harris
69 Posted 21/02/2016 at 21:10:34
So how am I being blinkered, Oscar?? I’ve put up with his embarrassing bullshit for almost 3 seasons now and I just can’t bear to listen to him any more.
Laurie Hartley
70 Posted 21/02/2016 at 21:10:58
Liam # 61.

I agree with you about Andy Rankin. One of my favourite goalies. As you say he was very acrobatic. Here is a link to the only photo I can find of one of the greatest saves I have ever seen. I was at that game.

Andy Rankin, the Everton goalkeeper, saves from Hunt.

There was a picture of it in the Football Echo that Saturday night from the other side of the goal. I can tell you Roger Hunt really blasted that shot – it was headed for the top right hand corner. How Andy got to it I will never know.

Oscar Huglin
71 Posted 21/02/2016 at 21:12:14
"Oscar... give it a rest. Are you a Catalan, whose dad is called Roberto and you have fixation for brown shoes and brown bullshit? Or is it something else?"

I'm just trying to support the club I love and not resort to slating everything it does, regardless of whether it deserves slating or not. When Martinez does a bad interview I'm among the first to criticise, his positivity drives me nuts at times. This was a good interview, and an encouraging one.

If we want something from this season we have to get behind the team, not look for any reason to criticise it.

Tony Abrahams
73 Posted 21/02/2016 at 21:24:20
Mike, that’s good what Howard is doing to help all those kids who suffer from Tourette’s; good man.

Maybe he’s a better teacher than player, and could possibly end up as a great coach. I say this because,one thing Howard never comes across as being on a football pitch is calm.

If he’s helping Joel conquer his nerves, then that’s a good thing. Long may it continue!

Graham Mockford
74 Posted 21/02/2016 at 21:34:38
Paul #62

Nice to see you around these parts. I couldn't agree more. Maybe I'm getting old but Evertonians singing a song denigrating their own player just seems wrong and makes us look classless.

I too think he has had his day but you play for a side for over 400 games maybe you just deserve a little better. Doesn't appear to be the consensus on here however.

Gavin Johnson
75 Posted 21/02/2016 at 22:02:07
I’d concur and say singing songs slagging off our own players isn’t good form. It’s one thing pulling them down for a bad performance on a forum, and Tim Howard has certainly deserved some criticism over the last 2 seasons. But denigrating them in public is too much.

Tim Howard has been a good servant to the club. It’s a shame his legacy has been tainted over the last 2 seasons. The big mistake was giving him another long contract.

I’m really made up that Martinez seems to have seen the light and will now give Joel his chance with a proper run in the side until the summer. I hope he impresses and becomes our No 1 goalkeeper next season.

Where’s Jim Hardin when you want him?? He’s normally the most vocal on here about all goalkeeping matters. I wonder if he’s starting to re-evaluate his opinion on Robles and see that he is clearly the better option to Howard now.

Mike Gaynes
76 Posted 21/02/2016 at 22:29:57
Gavin (#72), don’t sweat the contract. That becomes moot when Howard leaves for MLS .

Tony (#70), appearances are deceiving. Howard has had to maintain an incredibly calm mind and total focus to function as a professional athlete amidst the tics and twitches, which we can all see (and frequently mistake for nervousness).

This is such an incredibly difficult thing to do that I am only aware of two other athletes who have achieved professional-level performance despite Tourettes – an American baseball player (who at one point had to take three years off to get treatment) and an Aussie gold medal Olympic swimmer.

Don Alexander
77 Posted 21/02/2016 at 23:11:14
It’s wrong to condemn players on the basis of their character. Their performance yes, but their character, no. Tim Howard has been selected way too often for our or his own good this season, but that’s not his fault. Overall he’s been a good, but not great, keeper. We’ve had many worse.

Moving on, other, less experienced, players have also been over-selected again and again, to our and their detriment, but that too isn’t their fault.

To me, there’s also evidence that last season and this some senior players have spoken up at Finch Farm in a bid to achieve the wins that regularly elude the Incredible One unless we’re playing the worst teams in the Premier League. I believe Buzz and Eto’o were two of them. I also believe Seamus, Bainesy and Rom are in that group.

They themselves have in effect said so to the Press, as has Gazbaz in this last week or so. Only Bainesy has competition for his shirt, and I am in no way critical of Brian Oviedo by the way, but only Bainsey isn’t now selected, but that’s not his fault.

Watching the match against Bournemouth, I saw Jags and Gazbaz were the only players in the first half even trying to play long forward passes to Rom. For a very long time, albeit on the rare occasions this happens successfully, Rom is transformed into the worst nightmare for any defence in the country.

Two seasons ago, he tore Arsenal a new one from the right wing; on Saturday, he nearly did the same to the Cherries, but for reasons known to one man alone he ’s required to regularly play alone, in the centre, with his back to goal surrounded by defenders only too grateful to have him there.... but that’s not his fault.

I wonder who’s fault it all is?

Peter Carpenter
78 Posted 22/02/2016 at 09:02:03
It seems that Martinez is dragged kicking and screaming towards the right conclusions. Last season, it looked like it was the senior players, Barry in particular, who took the initiative in playing the ball forward more quickly. This season it’s only when the weight of evidence is pressing down on him like a collapsed building that he changes the keeper.

Bobby, you’re making it harder than it really is.

Dave Abrahams
79 Posted 22/02/2016 at 09:10:50
Peter (#74), he is making it very hard indeed, there is still no balance to the team, the movement and energy is still missing, we don’t look fit enough and, as you say, any real change is taken by the players or the crowd let him know what they thought of him in the last home match. He is his worse enemy and can have no complaints when he is finally dismissed.
Ernie Baywood
80 Posted 22/02/2016 at 09:16:13
Just throwing it out there...

Most had Joel down as a disaster. Right now he's full of confidence, seems to have claimed the starting spot and looks a keeper.

Maybe Martinez actually did the right thing for Joel's development? Waited for him to genuinely assert himself as our keeper. Fans behind him and everything.

Peter Carpenter
81 Posted 22/02/2016 at 09:24:32
I think Joel was asserting himself a year ago when he kept 3 clean sheets in a row and was dropped.
Peter Carpenter
82 Posted 22/02/2016 at 09:27:12
Perhaps a set of buttons could be installed on each seat. When the time comes for a substitution we all press for our choice of replacement. I wonder how many would have chosen Osman as the last throw of the dice against WBA?
Ian Burns
83 Posted 22/02/2016 at 10:44:58
Moyes was a coach with limitations but he knew how to organise his defence. Howard was his choice of goalkeeper. Since the last World Cup, Howard has not been the same goalkeeper but RM has until recently persisted in picking him.

Unfortunately Howard will now be remembered for these past two seasons of poor performances but for me the responsibility for this lies with RM and his inane hero-worship, completely out of kilter with Howard’s performances on the pitch.

Howard’s standards are now MLS – coincidentally the same as RM’s.

Charlie Burnett
84 Posted 22/02/2016 at 10:48:02
I seriously think the team is run by the fans. It's even got to us blues singing the name of a player and they are the next sub to be made.
Tony Abrahams
85 Posted 22/02/2016 at 10:49:01
Mike 72, that's why I respect Howard's achievements.

It's not his body language that I'm basing Howard not being calm on though Mike, it's what he does when he actually has the ball. Normally when the ball is in your keepers hands you can relax, but I'm sure you would have to agree that this is not always the case with Tim.

To be fair Robles, done it in the first half on Saturday, when he's threw the ball out, I think to Barry, just way too quick. Must be what the manager wants, but it's only possible if it's really on.

If I had as much experience as Howard, I would surely know when it's on or not, to throw Or take a quick goal kick. It's a football not a hot potato.

Joe Clitherow
86 Posted 22/02/2016 at 11:34:00
So I am a big critic of Martinez but actually for once – apart from the unnecessary OTT hyperbole which actually detracts a little from what he says – his post-match comments are actually spot on in terms of reading the game, IMO.
Daniel A Johnson
87 Posted 22/02/2016 at 12:00:02
Is there a better keeper for his age at the moment? We have a gem in Robles – big, athletic, good communicator and is now growing in confidence... Confidence which has been gained with some good performances and clean sheets.

If he comes good, he could save us £10M.

Daniel A Johnson
88 Posted 22/02/2016 at 12:22:51
I do feel a bit sorry for Howard. He's hardly going to drop himself.

Plus I can name a few Everton greats who have declined in their final seasons and they are not being slagged off to heavens.

Duncan Ferguson faded away with injury.
Tim Cahill just wasn't Premier League class anymore
Graeme Sharp got slower and slower

Jim Hardin
89 Posted 22/02/2016 at 20:46:15

Sorry, I was out at soccer tournaments and refereeing all weekend. Had to watch the game on replay. I didn’t know TW was waiting breathlessly.

As for some of the comments on here about Howard and my response. I have none for the likes of Darren and others that I have not already posted elsewhere. Plus, given the vile nature of the comments about Howard’s character etc and whether Robles can learn from him (Why does Robles have a disability?) these are so baseless and crude that what response would be appropriate? I learned long ago that there is a difference between ignorance and stupidity and that you can educate persons with the former but just must ignore those with the latter.

As for the game, Robles did well on the penalty save by guessing correctly. The shot was not unstoppable so he did what he should do. He did get lucky on the rebound. I never fault a keeper on a pk for where the rebound goes off the initial save and am not doing so now.

As for Robles in the game? I still have seen nothing from him that impresses me. He has done nothing wrong against lesser competition and lower Premier League teams. But he has not done this against good Premier League teams this season. If and when he ever gets the chance we will see.

However, when healthy, I fully expect to see Tim Howard back in goal to play behind a much improved defense which has increased its blocks, decreased the shots and crosses allowed, and in general, has done everything that our defense with Deulofeu, Kone, and Stones failed to do.

Jamie Crowley
90 Posted 22/02/2016 at 22:15:48
I, too, had a tournament with son #4 on Saturday and refereed 3 games yesterday myself, so in response to Dave Lynch at #52, albeit belatedly:

Dave, I will fully and unequivocally apologize if I’ve offended you with the "bitter" comment. Although not directly calling you "bitter", it would be rather disingenuous of me to pretend that comment couldn’t offend a bit. Any time – any – a person with nearly half a century of support comes on this wonderful website and tells me – a person who’s tenure fails miserably in comparison – that I’ve offended, I will always apologize.

That being said, I will not make any apology for the premise of my post. If individuals are so hellbent on ripping our manager for such innocuous and harmless comments, and comments that can easily be construed as positive and not overtly over the top (which I clearly believe this comment from Roberto was not), then they just have such a severe dislike of our manager it borders on hatred.

I’d equate that, definably, as bitterness that he’s still in his post.

Insofar as myself being offended at the "fan for 5 minutes" comment, as I’m sure you’re overly concerned about my feelings as well as your own, fret not. I’m not offended in the least. In fact, in my near decade of (long distance) support, I see the proportional ratio of your measure of time in a massively positive light.

If I can make it a mere half an hour by your watch it’ll be 60 years of support for Everton Football Club for me!

I rather like your measurement of time Dave. Maybe I’ll live to 1000....

Dave Lynch
91 Posted 23/02/2016 at 01:09:44
No worries Jamie, all forgotten about mate.

Thanks for the apology and I too apologise for the 5 minute remark.XXX

Michael Polley
92 Posted 23/02/2016 at 17:27:24
Howard was a great servant for us under Moyes, but he has had his day.
Brian Porter
93 Posted 24/02/2016 at 17:49:11
I do think our American friends have become a little jongoistic over the whole TIm Howard thing. Some of my best friends are Americans spread around places in Illinois and Arizona and my film work brings me into contact with a lot of Californians.

All of them share a great sense of nationalism and loyalty to their sporting heroes but I wish our American fans would realise that it’s nothing to do with Tim’s nationality, but simply to do with his current levels of performance. Please remember we have nothing against foreign players representing our club. We have plenty of them on our books and it is obvious we welcome and support them all as Everton footballers. Joel Robles, need we remind anyone, is a foreigner. He’s from Spain so we’re not saying we must have an Englishman in goal or even a non-American.

We just want the best keeper AT THIS TIME to be our #1 keeper and that keeper is most definitely NOT Tim Howard. Age has caught up with him and we have all seen the results of his loss of form over the last two seasons. I don’t blame Tim, or hate him, or have any feelings of animosity towards him as a person. I just don’t want him playing in goal for Everton’s first team any longer as he has lost the edge needed to be our #1.

So please, let’s forget all this nationalistic stuff, it’s actually irrelevant and distracts from the main issue, that of who is best placed to represent Everton as #1 goalkeeper.

Have a nice day folks.

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