With the enduring success enjoyed by José Mourinho, his curious two-season handicap notwithstanding, Andre Villas-Boas's enigmatic spell in England with Chelsea and then Tottenham, and now the burgeoning managerial careers in England of Marco Silva and Nuno Espirito Santo, Portuguese managers have become something of a curiosity for Premier League observers in recent years.
Indeed, perhaps only Italian managers can boast a better recent record than Portuguese coaches in terms of success in Europe's big leagues so it's no surprise that the name of Paulo Fonseca has cropped up in connection with some plum roles in the past year.
Rumoured to have been considered by Paris St Germain as a potential replacement for Unai Emery, were his stumbles in Ligue 1 to lead to something more serious for the French champions, and also rising force Monaco (managed by another Portuguese export in Leonardo Jardim), the 44-year-old has now emerged as a target of Everton as their increasingly frenetic search for a long-term replacement for Ronald Koeman stretches into its sixth week.
Fonseca has come to prominence not so much because of his achievements in Portugal, although he did enjoy some noteworthy success in his native land, but in the more far-flung environs of Ukraine with Shakhtar Donetsk. Competition in the Ukrainian Premier League may be limited but expectations at Shakhtar are, nonetheless, very high and in Mircea Lucescu, a winner of 22 trophies in just a dozen years, Fonseca had big shoes to fill.
Fortunately for him, he has met those expectations and filled those shoes impressively so far by landing the domestic league and cup double. He is also a point away from guiding Shakhtar out of a difficult Champions League group, behind Manchester City but likely at the expense of Napoli. Should he achieve that, his stock can only rise as clubs in Europe's biggest leagues start hunting for the next young managerial star.
Fonseca's career as a coach may be relatively young but he has already moved around a fair bit which isn't always the best trait in a manager. HIs first assignment in charge of a professional outfit was with C.D. Aves in the Portuguese second division, a team he guided to within a hair of promotion and earned a move to Paços Ferreira in 2012.
In taking that club to the Champions League for the first time in their history in his first season, he caught the attention of Iberian giants Porto who were looking to replace the outgoing Vitor Pereira. [Evertonians will recall that Pereira interviewed for the Everton job at the time but he was overlooked in favour of Roberto Martinez and ended up with Al-Ahli in Saudi Arabia.]
Fonseca only lasted one season at Estádio do Dragão, however, and despite winning the Portugese super cup, he was drummed out in March 2014 with Porto lagging nine points behind rivals Benfica. He returned to Paços for another year before joining SC Braga in 2015-16, rediscovering his mojo and re-establishing his credentials as a rising star in the domestic game.
After steering The Archbishops to fourth place in the Primeira Liga, the quarter finals of the Europa League and winning the Taça de Portugal, he was tempted away to Ukraine by Shakhtar where he has been for the past 18 months.
His team has been described as stylish and effective; attractive to watch and attack-minded with a possession-based system built around 4-4-2, 4-3-3 or the 4-2-3-1 formation favoured by Lucescu and a certain Catalonian ex-Everton manager. Indeed, the descriptions of Fonseca's Shakhtar are very reminiscent of Martinez's footballing ethos — short passes, high pass-success ratio, overlapping fullbacks, a deep-lying holding midfielder and a box-to-box side-kick — but his defensive record in Ukraine — just 0.75 goals conceded per game in his first season in charge — would set him apart in a direct comparison of the two.
At the time of Fonseca's unveiling at Shakhtar, Tom Kundert, Editor in Chief of PortuGoal.net, described him as “a very good coach [who always] gets his side playing good attacking football,” although there was an admission that part of his troubles at Porto were down to difficulties handling the egos present in that squad at the time.
Another blog wrote after Shakhtar's celebrated win over Napoli in this season's Champions League that, “I know many managers … [and] communicate with many players from top teams. Fonseca, with respect to tactics, is one of the best in the world. If you talk about leadership, then last season in itself said everything.”
Defensively, in a tactic that departs from Everton's experience with Martinez and would be more akin to the first few months under Koeman, Fonseca favours pressing opposition defenders when they have the ball with three forward players, hoping to force the kind of long balls forward that the Blues have had to resort to with depressing regularity this season. They then fall into a more compact shape with a high defensive line and protect the ball when they win it back rather than squander possession.
After Shakhtar's defeat at runaway group leaders Manchester City, ESPN's Gabriele Marcotti noted that in the first half of that encounter on 28th September which City eventually won 2-0, the away side actually had more of the ball, another nod to the Portuguese's preference for keeping and using possession as primary modus operandi.
“[City's] issues had more to do with the way Shakhtar set up than anything City did wrong, and for that, credit has to go to their manager, Paulo Fonseca,” Marcotti wrote.
"We're not used to teams who come here and keep the ball the way they did," Fabian Delph also said at the time. "It was really difficult to get the ball off them in the first half."
Perhaps spurred on by this taste of football in England and the fact that his current contract with Donetsk only has a few more months to run, Fonseca wasn't shy about expressing his desire last month to follow in the footsteps of ambitious Continental managers who have made their way to the Premier League.
“All coaches want to go to England and I am one,” he told The Telegraph. “I have this dream and I believe this can happen. I believe a lot this can happen. If it's soon or not, I have this dream.
“I have a big, big passion about the game and the atmosphere in England is amazing. I hope one day to live it. It's the biggest league in the world. For any coach, to work in England can be amazing. You have the best coaches and the best players.”
It was those comments, together with the fact that he was reportedly sounded out by the Blues last year, that led him to be linked directly with the Everton job which was, at the time, still occupied by Koeman. The speculation died down until yesterday — Fonseca, it is claimed by Sky Sports News, is on a strangely diverse shortlist of three names for the Goodison hot-seat that includes Sam Allardyce and Martin O'Neill — but the element of risk in appointing a relative unknown has surely grown in the interim.
Quite what O'Neill is thought to bring to the table is beyond most Evertonians but the overtly panicked move for the Premier League's “Mr Fix-It”, Allardyce, is an indication of the fear of relegation that has gripped the Boardroom and major shareholder, Farhad Moshiri. Though Fonseca lacked Koeman's top league experience, especially in England, he was, perhaps, a more natural candidate in the context of Everton's position 18 months ago. Moshiri may feel that what he is looking for now — motivation, man-management and qualifications from English football's school of hard knocks — isn't the same as what he was after then.
And yet, the public courtship of Watford's Silva, a coach whose genesis in Portugal is very reminiscent of Fonseca's and who has less than a 38-game season's worth of experience under his belt in England's top flight, shows that Everton are not averse to taking a flyer on a comparatively untried, young manager.
That's worth bearing in mind given that Everton are currently as far off ninth place as they are from rock bottom. The need to stabilise the team is now an urgent one — how the hierarchy might be kicking themselves for those five lost weeks now — but with time still in their favour, things could look much less terrifying with a couple of wins and what is required of that man sitting in that hot-seat could be very different.
Allardyce may end up being what the Board feel is an unpalatable but necessary option to dig them out of the quagmire they have created for themselves. But in Paulo Fonseca they might have seen something and the intriguing Portuguese, like his compatriot at Vicarage Road, could remain on the back-burner until the summer.
Of course, he might not still be available to answer the call. Whatever happens, pray Everton are still in the Premier League…
Reader Comments (131)
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1 Posted 28/11/2017 at 08:26:42
Unfortunately, he'll be the biggest risk too, which I think means we'll go with a safer option.
2 Posted 28/11/2017 at 08:46:04
Fonseca sounds more able, but that may just be the exotic name and working mainly in a league of which little is known.
Moshiri does not seem to want to consider the Premier League people listed above. Silva always seemed a difficult choice because of his short time at Watford.
It is the total lack of a real plan, of a strategy for progress that worries me most. This reactive style of running a major club is ridiculous. Koeman had to be sacked, but surely at that time a strategy also had to be in place for finding his successor? It manifestly was not in place and the chaos of the last five weeks has made us a laughing stock and has made any appointment feel that they were not a first choice candidate, which isn't how it should be.
3 Posted 28/11/2017 at 08:47:56
Oh yes, our glorious DoF. Who so far appears to have escaped the fall out from what has been a spectacular implosion of the "project" he was brought in to support.
As the club lurches from humiliating defeat to another, and from one embarassing managerial rejection to another, and from one cretinous Moshiri-Jim White on air discussion to another, Walsh is still there, in the background, smiling away.
Fonseca's credentials and suitability should be assessed by a football man inside the club's structure. He may indeed be a very good coach. But if he is inheriting a squad of players burdened by expectations but without the stomach or leadership for a fight, then he may well sink into the quagmire that is Everton football club at this point in time.
I read the press stories suggesting Allardyce and Shakespeare were Walsh's preferred choices.
No surprises there. The "project" Walsh has helped to assemble is radioactive waste which requires specialist fire fighters. If true, it is an admission by Walsh that he helped to identify and buy players who were ill suited to this football club.
If I was Fonseca or indeed Silva, I would read alot into Walsh's preference for Allardyce and stay well away from this most toxic of chalices.
We know Koeman had a big say on transfers. We know he halted Mirallas' move to Olympiakos. But a DoF worth his salt would not have stood by and allowed the coach to make disastrous decisions which would have affected his reputation.
If Walsh was a proactive participant in the construction of the shambles that is the first team squad, he should have been fired alongside Koeman.
If he was a silent witness to the most disastrous implosion that was our transfer policy in the final weeks of the window, he should have been dispensed with as soon as the window shut.
This glorified scout needs to go, to be replaced by a proper football man who will counsel our board wisely.
Perhaps then, the likes of Fonseca and Silva will be assessed and pursued in a manner which results in the club finally making the right appointment.
4 Posted 28/11/2017 at 08:57:22
But sadly, Unsworth has proved wrong but wromantic, which leaves us with Fat Sam, right but repulsive.
Not risk Vs reward, more, need Vs want.
5 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:01:55
Time for all this nonsense another time. We have a serious issue here and should be taking it serious.
If the Board are really looking at this guy it just proves not only should half the team be shipped out ASAP but also the Board.
6 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:05:29
7 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:07:30
But very good and thorough article. :)
8 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:24:33
9 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:29:24
'Sit on it, man!'
10 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:31:34
11 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:39:40
I will back whoever comes in but this is a difficult decision and certainly not as simple as bring in 'Big Sam to keep us up this season and then get someone else.'
12 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:40:04
13 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:46:01
No other club in the bottom half has our resources or as passionate fans.
No other club has a bear pit that is Goodison. With the right quality reinforcements, we will not get relegated. 2 strikers full back cover and centre-back.Players returning from injury will give us more too.
I feel the danger, I know why we are considering Allardyce. But, with all the factors as listed above I would prefer a more progressive coach, someone who can create something more than just a bunch of fire fighting hard knocks.
If its between Allardyce and Fonseca, I would advise go with Fonseca. It will be a more rocky road, but we will end up at a better destination.
Fortune favours the bold. Tell the board to hold their nerve.
14 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:46:22
Would you risk your money on this manager at this stage of the season?
You would have to be barmy and have suicidal tendencies to appoint him.
15 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:47:42
16 Posted 28/11/2017 at 09:58:55
For this reason Fonseca would be a massive gamble. Silva was appointed at Hull at the beginning of January and after an initial bounce was as we know unable to prevent relegation. For the record his win ratio was 36%, winning 8, drawing 3 and losing 11.
Looking at Sam Allardyce and his record with Crystal Palace. There was a similar win ratio as Silva at 37% but he took Palace on just before Christmas with them sitting in 17th place and with a better points difference of 3 points.
Fonseca appears at face value to be the more progressive coach and has a win ratio in Portugal and at Shaktar that would put Allardyce well and truly in the shade. The problem though is does he have the time, the motivational qualities and man-management skills to turn what is currently the worst team in the Premier League into a fighting unit ?
The comments regarding Steve Walsh for what its worth are bang on the money. He has presided over this catastrophic mess and should have been shown the door along with Koeman and his coaching staff.
17 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:00:11
A best figure win rate of 37% in his recent appointments.
A Premier League goal deficit of -80 .
His reputation is bigger than the reality of his achievements.
If they go with him, I wish him success and will continue to give my full support. I expect they will give him a long-term 3-year contract, with a £5m severance clause for the summer. The club will want to give the impression that he is here long term and has authority, the reality is he will walk away in June with a £5m bonus.
18 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:02:46
19 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:03:50
20 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:06:31
21 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:14:22
We can ride this out; let's not panic with The Dice Man. I think that Allardyce leaves clubs in turmoil. We need to think big.
22 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:28:53
23 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:31:51
24 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:32:23
When Pochettino and Silva were hired by Southampton and Hull respectively, there was a lot of derision aimed at the clubs, claiming that their lack of Premier League experience and foreign name meant disaster.
Both have proven to be excellent managers.
Britain does not produce high level managers, Look how Moyes and McClaren flopped despite being well considered here. The fact that Gareth Southgate is England manager is pretty indicative of this.
Allardyce would probably be able to justify his appointment, but it would condemn us in the long term.
While he has done well at his clubs, when he leaves they generally collapse. I think this is due to his method, either we accept the Allardyce way in the long term, or steer clear. For me the latter.
The only English manager who appeals is Eddie Howe. Maybe now is the time for him to leave Bournemouth.
Dyche has done well and would seem a sensible option, but underwhelming and a hence of, he'll take us to 7/8 and that's it.
Martin O'Neill is in fact a very good manager with a great record. If anyone was to come in on a temporary basis, I'd prefer him.
25 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:41:01
As an Irishman, I know that O'Neill is good at building camaraderie and spirit into a defensive, solid unit, but that's it. He did get Ireland playing well and believing in themselves, but was not ambitious. He had an alright record at Villa, but they went off a cliff after he left.
Allardyce will make us a laughing stock and there are no guarantees he will keep us up. He's a crook and is so far from what defines the values of Everton. Besides, just staying up is not enough for me.
A possession based manager is the way for Everton to evolve into a successful side. Martinez, for all his flaws, pointed the way. Someone more tactically astute could give this squad something to believe in.
26 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:45:36
Until I read this new shortlist I didn't realise you could have 3 polar opposites.
How many fans will now back this manager in the hope he does not turn out to be the failure ABV and Silva did (and yet all is soon forgotten because they are now at other clubs).
Just like Everton I'm turning into a broken record but at least I know who I want and would do almost anything to get him.
My record of choice is Gabrielle, dreams can come true.
27 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:55:39
28 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:56:21
We would become a laughing stock of mega proportions if Allardyce took us down so with this in mind I would go for a younger up and coming coach.
Eddie Howe has done brilliant with a tiny club to bring the Cherries up the divisions and hold his own in the Premier League with a limited squad.
Silva is doing really well with a small club and limited squad.
It's all a risk but the risk becomes greater for us in the long run with the old dinosaurs.
29 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:58:52
30 Posted 28/11/2017 at 10:59:03
Paraphrasing but "O'Neill is good at building camaraderie and he did get Ireland playing well."
Not being rude but, I can honestly say I have never seen Ireland playing 'well' under O'Neill's anti-football.
I'm living in hope that he doesn't sign a new contract with Ireland, but even more so that I don't have to witness his god awful football each week at Everton.
Fonseca looks on paper to be a forward thinking approach but he's a risk with our current lot who you wouldn't want in the trenches.
Allardyce I reckon will get the nod to steer the ship to safety for a bumper bonus and revisit in the summer.
31 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:02:55
What self-respecting manager wouldn't expect to turn this around in 25 games and avoid the drop this season?
Get someone in who you want for the long-term, not a short-term panic appointment like Allardyce that will set the club back a few years.
If Fonseca's the man, then get him in.
32 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:03:13
We will only have to go in for Fonseca, Silva or Simeone in the summer so we might as well get them in now. We also don't need any more bad publicity or scandals vis a vis corruption.
33 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:20:54
All of the above would require 3 new defenders, a new striker and 2 new midfielders to come in and click straight away. We don't have the time to waste taking silly short term risks making drastic changes to personnel and style.
I can see a case for Silva but he failed at Hull. Watford say no so move on, not that fussed. Same for ABV, failed. I think O'Neil would suit, but hopefully he's committed to IFA and no chance basket case Keane can be included. "Insert name" unproven Premier League experience, relatively unknown. All to risky at this stage.
Then there's a few experienced, proven winning managers who differ in style and method. We need one who would suit, who would get the best out of the current players and would be able to entice quality additions, LB, CB, LW, and striker.
34 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:40:56
35 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:44:38
Get in a manager who can get players playing football, instead of just firefighting.
36 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:53:03
He's currently doing a good job at Borussia Monchengladbach and formerly of Wolfsburg where he had success in the cups, got them Champ League football and likes to play a pressing / counter attacking style.
If I wasn't for Bayern Munich nicking all the good players who knows how far they could have gone..
Who can argue with that. The rumours will soon be a wash. Give me the Jim White hot-line.
37 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:55:05
The club's future is in the hands of this board right now. A bad appointment like Allardyce could ruin everything (stadium included). And that my friends is a far greater risk than going with Fonseca, the proven winner with actual trophies in his cabinet (not fake awards for keeping sides up).
38 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:57:08
It's got a festive vibe to it, I can see the headlines now...
39 Posted 28/11/2017 at 11:59:42
But... does anyone think that the reason why the clubs he managed struggled when he left was due to that, maybe if they'd kept him they wouldn't have?
Which club has he left in turmoil?
Bolton finished 5th when he resigned, Newcastle were mid table then Keegan destroyed them. He turned Blackburn around after Ince only to be sacked by the Venky's again whilst doing quite well and we all know what their choice Steve Keane did to them.
West Ham? Bilic has buggered them not Allardyce.
His firefighting reputation has only been around since Sunderland and we know what that team did to us don't we, how would they have fared the following year if he'd stayed and not took the England job?
Palace was always just until the end of the season, his palace team which basically relegated Silva's Hull plus I don't think he's really that responsible for their downturn do you?
With Fonseca everyone is saying "I think" or "he looks like" in other words no one has the faintest idea about him only that he's Portuguese and performs well in a two team league at club which always qualifies for Europe. You may as well be talking about the Scottish Prem'.
Stats are bollocks, they're like lampposts... great to lean on and shed a little light. There's just 2 which count, goals conceded & goals scored. I don't give a monkey's crumpet about how many passes are made, what the possession percentage is or how many km's they've ran.
I don't want philosophies or projects or some slide rule IPad toting Italian suit wearing nouveau riche bloke who can't speak a word of English.
All I want is 11 players lead by someone who can, motivate, organise, has a plan B, makes us hard to beat and uses the coaching sessions to actually improve the squad.
Talking about Fonseca in a similar manner to Mourinho & Pochettino for me is a mistake, a mistake Chelsea & Spurs made with AVB. Silva is a bit different he's trying to copy Pochettino.
Mourinho learnt his trade under Bobby Robson, his teams can be both tenacious and physical plus while Pochettino plays similar formations he's not pragmatic, doesn't go in for the possession based setup and always favours one on one marking rather than the zonal approach most now go in for.
My shortlist would be Dyche, Silva, Enrique, Allardyce.
40 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:12:20
Everton are a big draw for whoever comes here but they can only work with the tools they are given, and the tools in are box are not too sharp right now, and many are broken. So we need a good fixer who can make an immediate impact.
I wouldn't want Sam but guess I could put up with him if it was only for 6 months, but only 6. This would be Sam's biggest ever job and I believe he maybe wants a proper go at it but he's not the man for Everton. MO'N even worse. We should bust a gut for Silva or Fonseca if looking at the long haul imo.
Hull fans rate Silva as something of a genius and until we appoint somebody else or he categorically rules himself out he (both of these actually) remains firmly on my radar.
I do not believe we will hear anything until tomorrow, but my intuition is we will hear then, maybe early Thursday.
41 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:14:54
1. He wouldnt come.
2. Did do ever see celta Vigo?
3. Did you ever see Roma?
4. Does he even know how to defend?
5. What on earth does he have to offer Everton?
Well at least he aint corrupt so he has more going for him than Allardyce.
42 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:18:37
Calvert-Lewin is simply not good enough. He's looking desperate at the moment, as is Davies who is trying too hard and looks burned out. Beni is definitely one for the future, but that future is a good couple of years away. Kenny is half decent but won't get a look-in anyway once Seamus is back. Lookman is, let's be honest here, weak and a bit clueless, Vlasic is error-prone and a squadie at best. In fact, taken as a gourp, our youngsters really aren't that good.
Sam isn't what I hoped for but, his dodgy dealings aside, isn't that bad a manager he's never won anything but nor has Pochettino apart from a couple of Manager of the Month awards.
43 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:20:15
Can anyone name some of our current squad that will run through brick walls, dig in and do the hard graft off the ball. Those are the qualities needed to get out of the mess. We need to buy at least 3 or 4 of them in January plus a goal scorer to stay up.
I am confident that Big Sam will do that, could a manager from outside of the Premier League do it? A win ratio of 37% would keep us up, we can move on from there.
44 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:30:37
We are not in the shit. We have 25 games left and the window hasn't opened yet. We just need Walsh to pull his finger out and sign us a striker, a left back and a centre back.
Mr Corruption is still going to have the same problem Unsworth did in that he will have no time to get his ideas across to the players. Apparently I harp on too much about coaching. But appointing Mr Corruption will make us organised. How? is making us organised not coaching? When will this coaching take place? Will Allardyce be able to make there be 7 days between each game?
He's stalling on coming in right now anyway. He knows he's coming in at the wrong time. He needs time and Everton don't have time to give anyone right now. The games are coming too fast, as they have been since Koeman was sacked, and whoever is in charge can do no better than Unsworth, because there is no time to train the players, and you can't sign anyone else.
45 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:36:25
Correct me if I'm wrong, but what you're suggesting is that nobody can correct the slide, so keep Unsworth and then we will definitely be in the shit in January but Walsh can buy us some players.
I think if we're definitely going to be in the shit in January, we need someone with more experience than Unsworth or Fonseca at getting us out of it.
46 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:38:56
47 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:43:00
48 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:45:25
Say we beat West Ham and Huddersfield and then we agree terms with Allardyce, what will be the point? The situation is that we have half a season for someone to rally the team and lay the foundations to get back at the top 6 next season. Is allardyce going to do that? Has he ever been a manager capable of sustaining wins? Of course not his record does not bear that out.
will he walk at the end of the season? will he hell, he wants £6m a year for 3 years.
49 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:51:42
I agree, we're not fully immersed in the shit yet, but looking at Unsy after Southampton, the man was broken. We can keep putting it off, but we need to replace him sooner rather than later.
50 Posted 28/11/2017 at 12:58:29
Remember our motto.
51 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:06:12
No Sam No O'Neil
If there's any truth in these Fonseca rumours, and Silva is dead in the water he would surely be the best bet as a long term option. Lyndon's review has me warming to him.
52 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:09:15
As others have noted, firing him in the summer, if he insists on a longer contract, should be less expensive than paying out the rumoured £10m for Silva. More experienced and successful managers than Fonseca will be available then, if Fat Sam does the job and elevates us above mid-table.
Martin O'Neill was as obnoxious as a player as he is as a manager and I'm disgusted that he's been seriously considered.
53 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:14:04
54 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:20:01
Your financial calculations overlook the fact that he'll sign a load of players on big money who the next bloke won't want. The club will still have to pay their wages until they can offload them, which isn't that easy when they'll be on big money due to our "predicament".
We have no players who would currently fit into a Allardyce-style team. No big defenders, no big striker like Benteke or Wickham. It's just a panicking disaster.
We are the worst team in the league at the moment but the league situation is not yet dire; there are 12 teams separated by 8 points; only three of them can go down.
25 games is plenty of time for any decent manager to avoid the drop. Get someone in for the long-term. The players haven't reacted too well to the most recent short-term appointment the club have made...
55 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:20:55
We can either wait, hope for the best, see what the next couple of games bring, or we can act now. The board have clearly decided to act now. In fact they're getting lots of stick for waiting too long as it is. We need to be proactive, not reactive at this stage. We did the right thing, IMO, in sacking Koeman, now we need to appoint a safe option that gives us time to formulate a plan for next season. It's been said before, but if we DO go down, it's a hard place to come back from.
56 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:23:31
Am I missing something, we cant defend or score goals isn't that enough.
How about if we get beaten tomorrow and Saturday to teams who are distinctly average but end up still out of the bottom 3 are we not in the shit then either?
Wake up the ship is sinking.
I have no faith in Walsh bringing anyone other than an U23 player to the club given his track record with us. I do not believe that will change in January under an unproven manager. I will reiterate my earlier point we do not have the players equipped for a fight to stay up, Name me some?
Big Sam, like him or loathe him, can dig us out of this mess by bringing in players to help the cause. I do not have the same confidence level with anyone else mentioned. Its not even a certainty that he would come here given the boards ineptitude.
58 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:31:40
59 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:38:15
If you want to pick out a sentence of my post and completely remove the context, then fair enough. I appreciate that the play offs haven't made for great games but if you cast your memory back a little further, here are some examples of good results under O'Neill:
Ireland 1 Germany 0
Ireland 1 Italy 0
Serbia 2 Ireland 2
It's not fair to compare international management to club records, but even as an interim coach, he does get players to play for him. I wouldn't want to see him manage Everton either, but he does get a reaction out of the teams he manages.
60 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:41:00
62 Posted 28/11/2017 at 13:42:06
63 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:01:41
64 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:08:20
Enrique did well at Celta setting them well on their way. I watched 5 games there that season sitting in the Preferencia plus he didn't do too badly at Barca holding the record for most wins during a season.
I think you're also being a bit harsh about his defending too, ok at Roma they finished lower than Inter but scored more and conceded less plus improved on what Ranieri did the year before.
But yeah, he won't come.
65 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:18:21
If a manager is prepared to leave a team who come 2nd to City in the Champions League group stages wants to leave that all behind for Everton they have to be considered or locked up. But, whoever it is, let's get behind them & be patient unfortunately we are not the team we like to think we are.
66 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:44:57
67 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:47:01
68 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:55:46
However, Desporto Sapo claims that Shaktar don't want him to leave mid season.
69 Posted 28/11/2017 at 14:56:51
The paucity of the bottom half is such relegation is a possibility much less a reality.
The other options are stale, limited, damaging and beneath Everton. Moshiri came to make us a challenge and he should have the balls to stay the course.
Fonseca is progressive and young. If the man gets it right the up side is huge, and potential to see us through a stadium move.
O'Neill and Allardyce are dead ends, with the very limited upside, and inevitable change again in the short term.
70 Posted 28/11/2017 at 15:04:21
71 Posted 28/11/2017 at 15:10:25
Let him buy the players he wants in January and the summer and we start again. He has the opportunity to make a massive name for himself.
72 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:02:20
I both speak Portuguese and still follow Portuguese football very closely, having lived there for many years. It is very common for clubs to switch managers every year. Some even use 2-3 managers in the same season!
And it is totally false to say he has had 10 clubs (including 2 stints at the same club) over 10 years, as some point out.
He started off, after retiring as a player, as a youth team coach then learnt the ropes at 2-3 semi-professional teams in the (very) low divisions of Portuguese football. Small town clubs playing in shared municipal stadiums with 1000-5000 capacity. He would have barely earnt a salary doing this.
He first started making Portugal sit up and take notice when in consecutive seasons he took a club from the 2nd/3rd division Pinhalnovense to the quarter finals of the Portuguese Cup in 2 consecutive seasons.
Believe me, the lower divisions in Portugal are barely on a par with the UK National league, never mind the top four divisions. Indeed, the Big 3 Benfica, Porto and Sporting play their reserve teams in Div 2. So that was a helluva achievement.
He won his first full-time manager's position with the 2nd division side Aves. Having just missed out on promotion, he was recruited by another 'middling' club, Pacos de Ferreira, but in the top division...and in his 1st season he wove miracles! Finishing 3rd behind Benfica and Porto to claim a Champion League's place for the 1st time in the club's history.
He was duly appointed by Porto to replace one time Everton manager target Victor Perreira by the notorious hard-nosed wheeler-dealer and club president, Pinto da Costa (who remembers him pulling the plug on a Moyes attempt to sign Beni McCarthy back in the day...?).
At Porto you win trophies or you are history. With 3 months of his 1st season remaining, placed 3rd 9 points adrift of the leaders Benfica, he was binned.
Fonseca returned to Paços de Ferreira for a season, was then recruited by Braga possibly the next best club in recent years outside the top 3 who he won the domestic cup with and finished 4th to qualify for the Europa League.
He moved to Shaktar, won the league and as you may have noticed are making a pretty good fist of things in the same Champions League group with Man City and Napoli.
Now of course, he has no experience of the Premier League, but he could bring a lot to the table.
The problem I see, as with everything about this protracted recruitment process to replace Koeman, is timing. The Ukrainian winter break is due soon. Shaktar play their final Champions League group qualifier next week against Man City. Would either Fonseca himself or Shaktar be willing to see him move to Everton before then?
That would effectively mean another 2-3 - maybe even 4-5 games for Everton could slip by before he could remotely be free to join us.
He is a name I have referenced before. I for one would not be averse to seeing him arrive, but the board's hand may be forced to look elsewhere right now.
And a PS for Soren @ 68. The link you included is basically regurgitating the UK press, but adds he has no penalty clauses in his contract and that if Everton did land him they would only need to compensate Shaktar for the remainder of his contract which expires at the end of the current season.
73 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:04:58
74 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:08:06
This guy sounds exciting. The problem being he is being asked to create a masterpiece with a four inch brush and a can of Hammerite.
I hope I'm wrong but after Sunday I just feel like I've eaten a shit sandwich. The board need a steady hand here and the promise of follow up cash and a clear out.
75 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:33:05
As you say we are only 2 wins off 9th, West Ham and Huddersfield.
Then of course we mooch on over to Mordor, 3 easy points there. Bloody hell mate, by the time we take on Chelsea away just before Christmas well... surely we will be in or close to a Champions League spot.
Pointless us panicking and over reacting. Let's keep Unsy. Things will work out.
But Steve what will you say Saturday night IF our performances are similar to every game we've played so far this season-and pre season- and we aren't in 9th spot? Maybe we will be after the 2 following games, if not maybe the following 2, following 2?
Then again Steve maybe it's just safer to change things now while we have some sort of chance to sort it out, Allardyce, Fonseca, Hibbo's dog, doesn't really matter we have to put wheels in motion now. Burying your head in the sand and hoping things happen doesn't usually work. I just wish I could be as optimistic as you but these wasters have taken everything away from me.
76 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:34:01
Take any manager linked with our club who hasn't had a choc full of clubs. Tenure is shorter than ever before, the stability you seek in a manager is not en vogue anymore.
They are just as likely to leave as we are to give them the boot.
Its not a negative quality, just a reflection of the times we live in a the contracts we pay.
His profile is similar to Silva so it makes sense if we were keen on him, albeit with 9 months experience in England tacked on, then Fonseca is a logical and progressive choice.
Everton are a hard club to pigeonhole, not quite the top but very much better than the rest, we need an appointment which fits that, by its very nature a young dynamic manager on the rise, the implied risk is obvious. But isn't about time Everton went ‘balls out' for change?
77 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:38:43
It seems all is not as it seems!
78 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:47:44
Sounds fucking great.
79 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:49:17
Paulo Alexandre Rodrigues Goodison Fonseca
80 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:53:18
81 Posted 28/11/2017 at 16:55:13
82 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:14:23
83 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:21:19
My only fear, and I'd ask is this unfair to say?
The Portuguese Roberto? Possession-based, free-flowing attacking football has clear disadvantages in the Premier League. You need to focus on defending.
I was a big fan of Roberto's. I'd still maintain his "successful" teams before the rails fell off were the most enjoyable I've seen from an Everton team in my decade. But as I learned, and many, many other much more knowledgable people on this site pointed out - you've got to focus on defending too.
84 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:30:55
85 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:33:13
I really enjoy how you combine facts, history and storytelling, making this a superb article imo.
You sort of reminds me of a Norwegian, Richard Herrmann, who lived in London for many years. Herrmann wrote many books about english history, and I love to read them. Because of the way he tells the (hi) story. I recommend all of his books to everyone. He's translated to english, and I bet your library has some of them.
I also has to sa I support getting this coach. Never heard of him before, but his CV sounds excellent!!
86 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:37:56
87 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:41:21
88 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:41:28
Upon reflection we are 2 wins away from the top half of the league and this sends out all the wrong signals.
Fonz or silva or Tuchel or Dyche would finish mid table. But could then build and go forward.
Even Guardiola had a difficult first season and needed to spend £200m on defence and keeper to be the side they are now. Id take another year of building and getting rid of dead wood but Sam cant be the answer to deliver the rebuild the squad needs
89 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:43:20
For me the most important thing is not winning and losing it is playing this beautiful game beautifully. Its not the cynical Moyes game of ensuring you get 40 points and thinking its so great to finish 6th, It's certainly not the Martinez game of backwards and sidewards possession. It's not the Koeman game of imposing a tactical plan on a group of players who don't have the speed or personality to implement it.
This Everton side that is the worst in living memory has ironically some of the best individual players and although we might see stronger balls on Christmas trees there is the basis throughout to begin to build a true Everton side. Dropping out of the division with a great coach might be not quite the horror that we imagine. Maybe if we weren't so intent and satisfied on stopgap band aid solutions, prime examples Ashley Williams, Coco Martina, Arron Lennon. Maybe if we refused to play players who are clearly past it . Maybe a year in the second tier would give us a chance to actually build a young Everton side that would fly up the Premier League Maybe we will be able to see an Everton side that plays this beautiful game beautifully and without fear.
91 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:50:27
92 Posted 28/11/2017 at 17:51:03
93 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:00:26
94 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:02:15
95 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:14:53
96 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:15:45
For those who are saying that they would like him as manager, would you say the same if your home depended on the result!
You lost your house if we were relegated, who would you chose Allardyce or Fonseca as manager. Its no contest isn't it.
97 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:23:07
99 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:25:09
Call me a romantic but as far as I'm concerned the mentality of starting any season with the gaol of finishing 6th is the same disastrous thinking and losing mentality that Moyes and Kenwright have inoculated our beautiful club with and we suffer from it.
I would hate to take the drop but if it takes that to become a team worthy of our name who cares. Do we prefer to just hang on playing the cynical game of not scoring many but just conceding a few fewer.
Or developing a young exciting team of Dowels and Davis's that will in the end take us to the highest that we all dream of faster. No fear.
100 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:28:41
102 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:33:58
Despite the Fellaini and Baines stuff, I'd have taken Moyes over him by far! Maybe we should have got Moyes back when we had the chance.
Fonseca, yes its a big risk, but I think it may JUST be worth it. As Lyndon described, A Martinez who can defend, I'm sold on that concept.
104 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:36:19
105 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:37:01
Fonseca is a risk, but also comes with tremendous upside. And I think some are buying a little too readily into the Allardyce mystique. Last year he took over a perfectly decent Palace side that was underachieving under Pardew and had the sort of players that fit his system. Before that, he kept Sunderland up by a whisker... and might not have if he hadn't banked three easy points by playing us at precisely the right time, as the Martinez era finally, officially collapsed.
108 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:39:17
109 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:40:55
110 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:42:27
111 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:44:16
112 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:47:01
At least we won't have that problem with Fat Sam... cloud, silver lining, eh?
113 Posted 28/11/2017 at 18:54:26
If Moshiri wants to go Portuguese he can always get his man, be it Fonseca, AVB, Nuno or Silva, in the summer which will give him time to shape his team.
Big Sam, despite his horrible football, will guarantee us survival until we can sort out the mess that this board has created. Moshiri needs to start taking over the club, from top to bottom, as right now we are more dysfunctional than the Simpson family.
114 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:03:59
Are you suggesting get him on a 2.5 year contract then give him the E at the end of the season after he's kept us up? Poor form, that.
I'd suffer him on a six month (no more) with a review at the end of the season. You never know he could turn out to be a magician.
115 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:09:45
Please please be right because I can't stand the thought of us accepting this level of mediocrity in Big Sam.
116 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:11:07
Likewise, the fact that Shakhtar are almost chronic Ukrainian champions shouldn't detract from the fact that Fonseca has done a great job there. It is a club now virtually without a home town, given the troubles in the Ukraine. They are now based well away from Donetsk and their natural support. Still, he overcame all that, and won the double. And now, he is close to getting them into the last 16 of the Champions League. No mean feat.
The fact that he has too many clubs in his CV for such a short career should be put into perspective: most of that career has been spent in his home country, where ther managerial merry-go-round is quite impressive, to put it mildly.
117 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:11:38
No one can guarantee us anything but Big Sam has done it before. As for giving him the boot in May, well thats the nature of the game. Hell walk away a very rich man.
118 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:19:53
Fonseca is a bigger gamble than Allardyce.
I say give big Sam as short a contract as he will take and if and when he takes us to 40 points, only then we can think about looking for a manager with the playing style and morals that we all would like.
We all know how long it has been since we won a trophy, One of the few records we can boast about is the length of time we have spent in the top flight without going down.
Relegation will be a disaster, time to take emotion out of our next appointment and go for the best qualified candidate, even if he is a crook.
119 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:20:24
I have since amended the piece above, thanks!
120 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:31:20
Which one of his ex clubs is ripping the league up as the legacy of his time there. Most are just as crap as they were before he started. If you are going to bring someone in surely you must look to the future not just a quick fix.
A very bad situation that the board have stood by and let the club sink into until it is a complete and utter joke of a club led by a complete and utter joke of a board.
121 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:37:53
Then again, don't cos I really can't be arsed.
122 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:39:17
123 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:46:54
124 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:53:46
Fonseca could come in and he might be a miracle worker. He also might turn out to be another foreign manager who doesn't succeed in the Premier League.
Nothing is guaranteed either with big Sam, all I am saying is that his past results show he is a safer short term option
125 Posted 28/11/2017 at 19:59:33
Your right of course that, sadly, is the nature of the game these days which is why so many people are 'going off' the game but remaining addicted to the actual 'Sport' of football, if you get my drift, especially anyone over the age of about 30-40. I mean, who actually enjoys all this money shit in the game now besides the players, agents, managers and most owners.
Anyway if anyone can guarantee to keep us up, I'd be right behind them, whether, it's Big Sam, Martin O'Neill, Robert Mugabe or Don's egg.
126 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:01:09
127 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:09:46
My missus would prefer him to Sam tho!
128 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:13:36
But I think now it's a case of if it doesn't work out there is no time to get things right. He looks to have the right credentials and qualities, although he hasn't stopped in the same place too long.
Looks like a straight choice between big Sam and him. Okay, yes sod it. Let's go for him and hope it's one great rollercoaster ride.
129 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:32:39
131 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:41:51
132 Posted 28/11/2017 at 20:42:28
Someone on top is pulling the strings, leaving us in a torrid nightmare.
The Farhad Moshiri pie in the sky thinking shows me we are being sabotaged by Usmanov, when Moshiri has lowered the price and value of the club then he will sell, I bet that we will be relegated unless some realism is in contol of this club again.
Bill is a dreamer, Moshiri is a snake just interested in profit.
This spells out disaster, Lukaku was sold without having brought in a like for like quality striker.
Every Everton fan needs to look at all the broken promises and the Jim White lie spewing through the media, supposedly from Moshiri.
I suspect Usmanov of playing a part in the shadows, Moshiri wants nothing to do with Bill Kenwright, he only wants money.
I fear we are in a rot, it stinks, false promises, transfers in toilet, selling off the best Striker we have had in a long time is not an move out of ambition!!!!
If Allerdyce is hired then Moshiri will have the low budget big profit operation he wants.
We are just witnessing the destruction of our great club, just look at the faces of Ferguson and Unsworth, they know we are in crisis, the fans are still unaware of the HUGE fall, I think Unsworth is fully aware that there is a power struggle inside the board and we are losing, Everton fans must start to protest against this shithouse of corruption. Blue Union is needed now so we can point the finger where it is needed!
133 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:04:25
134 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:23:58
Allardyce is now presented as some kind of "saviour of the lost" as though getting him in to prevent us being relegated is somehow looked upon as a self-fulfilling notion. By all accounts, the performance at Southampton was an utter disgrace, so devoid of any redeeming features that it was a total insult to everything that the club has meant to countless thousands of people over many lifetimes. The one element of that performance that seems to confirm this was the lack of spirit, commitment and what used to be known as professional pride.
Thus whoever comes in has to work with what he has got and what he has got is mediocrity par excellence. How many of this squad would be of interest to the top teams here or abroad? One, two .perhaps? The January window is looked upon as the time when we will get the defensive players we so desperately need, to then say nothing of the centre forward role so criminally neglected since Lukaku went. But where will these improvements be found in January?
The availability of the Kevin Campbells of this world do not come around very often. We have to go back to the arrival of the wonderful Bobby Collins in 1958 to see the last time a single player had such a galvanising effect on a team (after 6 straight losses!).
I do not underestimate the power of a passionate crowd to lift the performance of even the most limited player but I wonder if at present the crowd can actually identify enough with the team on the pitch such is the woeful spirit and lack of application and effort that seems to be evident.
Furthermore if people such as Allardyce are appointed it hardly inspires people to identify wholeheartedly with the situation especially if the instant turnaround is not forthcoming.
Of course we all hope that this dire situation can be turned around and that a new broom can sweep away all those who are responsible for allowing this situation to have gathered momentum over many years but so alarmingly over the past 12 months; from board level, through administrative levels and to this sorry mess of a team masquerading as Everton.
Of course we hope that a turn around may be forthcoming in the next two matches, but Moyes is not stupid and will be praying for Williams at centre back etc and Huddersfield have what Everton at present do not have, team spirit and ruthless application and endeavour.
So the evidence before me says that the situation is indeed dire and that the shambles that has existed over far too many years may finally, dramatically caught up with us at last whatever my elderly heart wants to tell me.
135 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:24:47
136 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:33:17
Half the blokes in Speke look like Simeone.
137 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:38:50
138 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:42:05
We may be the ugliest girl at the disco, but we drive a Porsche, and have a mansion, and will buy you everything you could ever want. I bet someone will be tempted to take us home.
139 Posted 28/11/2017 at 21:44:01
The rumour now is that Sam could be in before tomorrow's game. Later it will be that Unsworth has until January.
140 Posted 28/11/2017 at 22:34:13
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