“Our Rightful Place”

No club is ordained to be ever-successful but there is a strong case to be made for one club’s place at the proverbial “top table” of English football being “rightful” and that is Everton. We need not be apologetic about demanding we get back there or be hesitant in trying.

Lyndon Lloyd 03/05/2018 91comments  |  Jump to last

It’s a phrase that trips so readily off the fingers and onto the keyboard, it seems, that I hadn’t really even noticed I had included it in my recent “Something to Believe In” piece. That was until it was posited in the ensuing comments by a reader that trying to restore Everton Football Club to what many of us believe is “our rightful place” was, perhaps, the cause of so much of our discontent.

I’ve reflected since on a notion buried so deep in my bones that I didn’t even pause over the words as I typed them. Do Everton have a divine right afforded by the football gods to be among the kings of the English game? Is the source of our frustration over the club’s continuing struggles simply due to a failure to accept that Everton are now also-rans or that we don’t deserve a seat at the top table of domestic football and, by extension, a crack at glory on the European stage?

Nothing is a given, of course; no club is ordained to be ever-successful (although the increasingly top-heavy nature of the Premier League means that there is now a distinct and sizeable advantage for a handful of rich teams that has seemingly guaranteed a never-ending status quo) and football’s history is littered with the names of big clubs — Aston Villa and Sunderland still have more titles than Manchester City; Leeds United, Blackburn Rovers, Sheffield Wednesday, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Huddersfield Town have each won the league three times — who once knew success but have since faded as a genuine force.

There is a strong case to be made, however, for one club’s place at that proverbial top table being “rightful” (which is not to say we should be winning everything but these days we should at least be perennial contenders). Founder members of the Football League, founder members of the Premier League 104 years later, nine-time champions of England with a nearly ever-present membership of the top flight and with an unrivalled lists of footballing firsts... if there is one club currently excluded from the clutch of powerful clubs currently dominating the landscape of our national sport that deserves to be among them it is Everton FC.

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Some media pundits have been queuing up to slam Evertonians for wanting their club to show the ambition and fortitude to thank Sam Allardyce for his service and see him on his way this summer. Garth Crooks could barely contain his righteous indignation that we Blues would have the “brass neck” to want more than a journeyman manager whose sole repertoire over the last decade has been to save clubs from relegation. Alan Shearer argued that Allardyce had “done the job [asked of him] and more” at Goodison Park and was right to be miffed at the negative attitude towards him from Everton’s supporters. And Tony Gale insisted recently that Allardyce should be given more time and a big budget to show what he can do.

The argument why he shouldn’t has been made repeatedly in this column and in the afore-mentioned 1878 Magazine article and doesn’t need to be dragged out too much here. Suffice to say there is nothing on Sam Allardyce’s CV or in evidence over the six months of his tenure at Everton that suggests retaining his services or, God forbid, extending his contract would move a club of Everton’s size and ambitions forward.

Ironically enough, both of Mr Shearer’s and Mr Gale’s clubs felt the same way about the disgraced former England manager and, like the majority of Evertonians, their fans couldn’t wait to get rid of him and his “style” of football. Mr Crooks’ beloved Tottenham sacked Andre Villas-Boas when they were seventh in the Premier League and still seen as upwardly mobile. There is no way in hell Spurs’ leadership or their supporters would have tolerated an Allardyce-type appointment at their club — Christian Gross was more than enough for them! — instead they were bold and are now reaping the benefits.

And, of course, some of the top clubs have practically had a revolving door when it comes to the manager’s office — Chelsea have had nine managers in the last 10 years; Manchester City have had four; Manchester United sacked Louis van Gaal the day he won the FA Cup to install their fourth boss in as many years — all in the pursuit of silverware, the title, dominance. Big clubs acting like big clubs do in the fast-paced and ruthless way of the modern Premier League.

Their enormous financial resources have made that possible and with the Blues now better able to compete on that front, having spent £16m to offload their last two managers and were willing to pay Watford another £15m for theirs last October, what right does any observer or commentator have to tell Everton they can’t also act like a big club?

Thankfully, some get it. (Pleasingly, on the playing side as well as newspaper writers.) Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earl, purveyors of The Two Robbies podcast and pundits-in-residence on NBC Sports’s Premier League coverage in the United States, both argued that a club with Everton’s heritage and expectations needs to make a change this summer and appoint someone with a footballing outlook and pedigree to match.

Daniel Taylor wrote perhaps the best piece by a non-Evertonian on Allardyce in The Guardian earlier this week in which he captured the mood following the hand-wringing from some of his journalistic peers about the banners and chants calling for Allardyce’s removal. “I have seen Everton’s supporters described as ungrateful, unreasonable and unrealistic,” he wrote. “The truth, however, is that he has always been an awkward fit for a club with Everton’s aspirations.

And Daniel Storey, a beleaguered fan of another club battling to live up to its rich traditions in Nottingham Forest, penned an equally insightful article for Football365 in which he wrote: ”There is a inaccurate accusation that these fans – similarly to those at the Emirates – have unrealistic ambitions that blur into entitlement. That’s wrong. Everton supporters do not expect to win trophies or finish in the top six, but they do expect progress, or even an attempt at progress that is not undermined by their own actions and inaction.”

Evertonians shouldn’t be apologetic or shy about wanting the best; it’s right there in the motto and in the club’s long list of achievements. Nor should they be swayed by a couple of positive results in no-pressure matches that remove us further from the demoralisation and frustration we felt after heavy defeats at Arsenal and Spurs and subservient displays at home to the two Manchester clubs.

But already, following two wins against poor teams that posed very little danger in an attacking sense to threaten our quest for three points by an expensively-assembled squad that should be beating Newcastle and Huddersfield regardless of the manager, objections to Allardyce are wavering. Everton are being criticised for a “mob mentality” for simply taking the only avenue open to them to let the Board know their feelings (while also objecting to the manager's public dressing down of certain club employees). Other Blues are hedging and considering “putting up” with another year at least of promised mediocrity, fearful perhaps of the uncertainty that would follow from another change in manager, particularly an untried option.

Sam Allardyce has done the job asked of him but the job we now need done by Everton’s manager is a very different one and all indications are that it would be beyond him. Every win under his stewardship was against teams below Everton in the table and done with the benefit of a squad gradually improved by players returning from long-term injury and two January acquisition in key positions. With the original remit of the task now complete, one of the questions that should be asked now is: if Everton were playing a top-six side next weekend with something to actually play for, who among us can honestly say that Allardyce would be able to mastermind a victory? Nothing has changed on that front.

Farhad Moshiri arrived at Everton 26 months ago with an air of ambition and, despite some obvious mis-steps as he has tried to get his arms around the project and arrest three decades of decline, stagnation and debt, he has unquestionably improved the club’s financial standing, if not its proximity to success and the end of its trophy drought.

With packed houses at home and sold-out allocations away, the supporters of this Grand Old Team have clearly bought into that promise of a brighter future and a return to better days and they are willing to invest their hearts and souls in it. IN terms of the size and passion of its latent support, Everton is primed for success but, again, they need something to believe in and a bold project to get behind.

If that ambition, one that includes the vision of Everton kicking off the 2022-23 season in a brand new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock, is to be realised then we need to retain the courage and determination to make tough decisions and to keep pushing forward to get back to where this club’s history and size demand it should be.

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Matthew Williams
1 Posted 03/05/2018 at 18:32:51
Great piece yet again Lyndon.

Our rightful place is Wembley Stadium, lifting a trophy and of course... leaving Mordor with all three points.

Si Pulford
2 Posted 03/05/2018 at 18:37:33
Great article. Although there is a little truth in the accusation that some blues are ungrateful.

Applies tin hat.

Allardyce HAS done the job he was bought in to do. He has more than achieved his brief. We should thank him for his services and wish him well in the future.

But, we should also sack him and get some one else in.l for phase two of the operation.

Booing him and some of the chants aimed at him are undignified and lack class. Something you can rarely level at Evertonians.

He’s an awkward fit. He was never a long term appointment. But he has done the job he was bought in to do so we should at least treat him with a little dignity.

Ian Burns
3 Posted 03/05/2018 at 18:48:05
If EFC could match the standard of your articles Lyndon you wouldn't be writing this piece - first class.

Every supporter knows the club has made errors in just about every department at the club since the '80's, not just on the pitch but very much off the pitch. We have somehow let the malaise set in to the point where young supporters throughout the country don't recognise Everton as we see ourselves. To them we are just one of the rest, consistently top half if you like but certainly not going to threaten the top echelons of the league.

Older supporters recognise what we used to be but they also have become used to us being "one of the rest".

To we Evertonians however (at least most of us) see our rightful place as being at the top table but Mr Moshiri (if he is indeed the right man) needs to make changes that are real and sustainable. He could start by making three extremely important appointments.

We need a CEO who recognises the opportunity and can make the changes to turn us into a top business.

We need a DoF with a far wider remit than the present encumbent with the experience and importantly, the worldwide connections to go with it.

We need a new manager; one who can genuinely move us upwards; one with ambition and the courage to match. One with the genuine ability to take us into that top six and beyond.

Brian Williams
4 Posted 03/05/2018 at 18:49:35
You haven't quite "got it" have you Si?
Lawrence Green
5 Posted 03/05/2018 at 18:58:52
It is the eternal question "What is Everton's rightful place?", up to our last taste of glory in 1995 and for a little while after, I always believed that Everton Football Club were one of England's elite clubs and would - at least once every decade or so - challenge for the top prizes, with the league title being a realistic target. Today as we worry about how Moshiri is going to shape the club in the years to come and fret about whether Sam Allardyce will be our manager for another year or two, I fear that we have become just another famous name who's best years are behind them.

We had a brief rally in the late 2000s where it seemed more than possible that if a rich benefactor could be found, we'd be able to utilise the momentum and move on to bigger and better things, alas that wasn't to be and we continued to sell to buy, never being able to build for more than a season and a half at a time, sometimes going backwards to take a baby step forward.

David Moyes left the club and since Roberto's first 'golden' season we have gone back several steps leading to the appointment of Sam.

I do wonder, if like Gus Poyet mentioned in a recent article about Sunderland, whether there is an invisible force which prevents Everton FC fulfilling its latent potential. I also wonder how ambitious the likes of Kenwright, Woods and Elstone truly are or have been, after all sucess on the pitch doesn't come cheap, and the more sucessful the club is, the more funding it requires.

Moshiri looked as if he could provide the funding at least in the short-term, but he also said the club should be self sufficient. As there doesn't appear to be a queue of big-time sponsors to help fund the club, how, apart from the TV revenue, are Everton FC going to be able to compete with the biggest and richest clubs in England and indeed Europe.

Soley relying on TV revenue also means that Everton FC are finding it ever more difficult to compete against the less rich clubs too, as wages and transfer fees soar, the chances of sucess are dwindling for most clubs and particularly for those such as Everton who are seen as unfashionable, boring and who live in the shadows of the three massive clubs on their own doorstep.

Sadly I think the party was over, long before it even started, there are many reasons why this might be the case, but a quarter-of-a-century of bad management off the pitch and a lack of real success on it, means that Everton FC may well have to rely on its history for its modern identity becoming the museum piece that Mr Moshiri said he didn't want to see us become.

The best we can hope for is an adventurous manager who tries to win football matches in style, of course such an approach can lead to some bad days at the office, but I'd prefer to see that, than every day being a bad day, with some days being very much worse than bad.

Matthew Williams
6 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:07:04
Very true Ian,but a top six finish & then what ?...still no Trophy to show for our efforts,a C.L we have NO chance of winning (Uefa do love their favourites),even Man.City aren't deemed worthy yet.

So many Blues following the Mosh line... sigh,a road that leads to nowhere but we will make a fair few quid along the way.

The fastest route to Silverware is in the competition we haven't given a flying fuck about for over 50 fucking years.

Just 7 games Blues...to glory,then & ONLY then we can compete.

Take a long hard look at our club pennant the next time your in a club shop & see what it shows !!!.

Jay Wood

7 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:11:02
A fine piece Lyndon.

I will challenge you on your key premise about 'Our Rightful Place' though.

No club merits a place at the “top table” on sentiment or ancient history. None. Only performance merits that.

It is 31 years since we were League Champions. 23 years since we held the FA Cup aloft. That equates to around 20% of our entire history.

When the PL was formed - very much at the initiative of our own club chairman and President of the Football League at the time (Phil Carter) - we were at least the equals of our historic peers and overwhelming superior in every way to the vast bulk of the rest of the league. Including the 'new monied' clubs like Chelsea and now Manchester City.

We are what we are and we merit no better because of more than a quarter of a century of woefully inept governance.

As you note, we are 28 months into the stewardship of Farhad Moshiri and can anyone honestly say there has been a noticeable sea change in the direction of the club?

Unless and until there is radical reform in the administrative wing of the club, its marketing and finances, expect more of the same.

We will still be feeding on the scraps that fall our way from the "top table" to the servants quarters.

Lawrence Green
8 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:16:38
Mathew, I take it you have placed a bet on Everton winning the League Cup at some point in the future, as you must have posted the same thing on nearly every current thread. Beieve me most Evertonians would be happy to see a trophy in the cabinet, but winning the league cup won't elevate us into the higher echelons of English football, although it would be nice to win something

Leicester City were champions a couple of years ago, has it helped them to become a better more competitive club? Everton FC are so far behind most other clubs commercially, only a huge influx of money from a richer person than Moshiri will help us to challenge those clubs who are richer than us, plus the infrastructure at the club has to be changed drastically and there aren't any real signs that either will happen.

Matthew Williams
9 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:34:42
No flutter for me Lawrence,have you seen the teams in that comp we've lost to in the past !...then again look at past winners !!!.

Success breeds success they say, but a top four finish means nowt to me, only a Cup will satisfy,it's what it leads to via the fastest means possible,jeez,even losing a game in the Semi's can get us to Wembley to finally win the 3 handled Trophy.

I will remain the lone voice in the wilderness on this matter & watch how 99.9% of all Blues (who share Moshiri's vision) fair with their top 4 fantasy to qualify for the C.L we have no chance of winning !.

I pray I'm wrong, believe me.

Lawrence Green
10 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:37:12
Mathew, there is of course no good reason why we couldn't do both win that elusive League Cup and qualify for Champs League, but I think my medication is kicking in, so you might be right! :)
Matthew Williams
11 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:40:17
Here's hoping for a brighter future for our team Lawrence,whatever we can win...fuck,a Derby win would be a good start !.
Chad Schofield
12 Posted 03/05/2018 at 19:53:37
Lyndon, your articles are normally littered with comments praising your word-smithing, and I really hope this one is too.

We're at such a crucial stage. Further stagnation and we'll slip further away from those teams who (currently) regularly have European football and can attract genuine talent rather than just high-paid has beens.

We've suffered years of the "careful what you wish for" nonsense. Of course we have to be slightly patient... but (I'm fairly sure we're about the same age) with the early/mid 80s successes grainy childhood memories, the outlier '95 cup final and the some "plucky" Euro qualifying league places-that-soon-turned-into-nightmares - it's been tough. The sad thing is outside of those things, it was only the "excitment" of the great escapes that really stand out.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not really complaining. I'm not looking at my life's work in despair... or thinking of giving up football or "switching teams" - but would I have cared if we'd have "bought" winning the league? No. Would I like to see Everton playing sublime football with glittering super stars? Yes.

I was sad to see Martinez go. Not because I thought he did everything right, and yes, maybe I'm going against the criticism of "careful what you wish for", but that was the first time I can remember since being a child actually going up against any team and thinking we had a real chance home or away. Not in a dogs of war style "nick a goal and keep it tight" seige sense... but actually playing some decent stuff.

People point to some of the football under Moyes, and yes on occasion if we were winning by a decent margin (so not so often), the reigns would be loosened. But it always felt like he was daring for a mistake to be made so he could pull back. I didn't hate Moyes, but by the end with talking about himself in the third person and his Hughes-esque antics once he arrived at Man U (not mention the wind down before) did tarnish things.

But yeah, finally with Moshiri's arrival there was a real sense of change. I think some people are rough on him... and hopefully those mis-steps will mean he avoids any real egotistical banana skins when things do actually take off.

One thing is for sure though, nothing's going to take off except our youth and talent if Allardyce remains.

It's ludicrous for Rio Ferdinand and co to suggest we should simply be grateful for the stuff we're being served by Big Sam on and off the pitch... they wouldn't stand for it at the teams they are affiliated with. We have done our time keeping it tight and we now need some real leadership and direction stemming from the club's identity, not just hanging on in there and being scraped off on the Euro doormat just in the top half - or worse getting dragged in but not having a squad in place to actually compete in domestic and European competitions.

Peter Laing
13 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:00:43
Moshiri has been left badly burned by the faith that he placed in Ronald Koeman. Moshiri brought Koeman onboard due to his pedigree as a footballer and the stellar career that he enjoyed for both Club and Country. Such faith was blind and backfired spectacularly. We are now in no mans land with a journeyman Manager, an ageing squad, a busted flush of a DOF and a Chairman that has presided over the most barren spell in the Clubs history. We are truly caught between a rock and a hard place and our rightful place is one of overwhelming mediocrity. Everton are as far away now as they have ever been from the top table - but we all know that don’t we ? There is only one man that can potentially navigate the Club out of choppy waters but on the evidence to date Moshiri has failed.
Phil Walling
14 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:01:21
BIg club or successful team ? Most of us (old and middle aged ) would regard the likes of Villa, Newcastle and Leeds as BIG clubs just like ourselves.

How long this appendage will endure depends entirely on how long they (we) fail to capture Leagues and Cups.
My 45 year old son already regards us as '0ld hat' !

Si Pulford
15 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:05:56
Nice and patronising response there, Brian. Nice one for such a well thought out response. What exactly haven't I ‘got' exactly?

The fact that Evertonians should act with a bit of class?

That's a given-even you should ‘get' that.

Sean Kelly
16 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:21:13
Phil, my four sons aged from 28 to 37 – we've been old hat all their lives. But then again they are manure nut. Where's me gun.
Joe McMahon
17 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:27:23
The Kenwright years have/are taken us nowhere, but further behind. 11 years with a manager who won diddly-squat, just about sums up Everton in these years.

IMO - Evertons real chance came and went with Kings Dock, all we are now is Man City before the Commonwealth wealth games. For Platt Lane and The Kippax, see Bullens and Gwladys St, for Kenwright see Peter Swales. Sadly unlike City and West Ham we won't be given a stadium.

The media obsession today with you know who has been sickening, just wait till they win it. For Everton even a domestic cup is 23 years and counting...

Don Alexander
18 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:36:20
Well said Jay (#7), you exactly reflect what I and many others have been saying.
Dermot Byrne
19 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:47:28
I agree with you Jay #7. We may all wish and dream of being the very best but we have no right to anything sadly.
Kevin Tully
20 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:51:13
A brief list;

1. 40,000 Evertonians giving Moyes a standing ovation as he sneakily joined what used to be one of our greatest rivals. He left without a trophy, He was lauded like a Fergie.

2. The "Magnificent 7th" DVD

3. Not a single great player signed for 30 years.

4. "Let's get to 40 points" and the captain (another Utd reject) saying: "A top half finish is good for a club like Everton."

5. A board directly from the 1970's who won't let go.

6. A ground left untouched for a generation, with 11 exec. Boxes. The lowest in the Premier League.

7. Debt, debt, debt and numerous mortgages. A sneaky leveraged buyout that got past everyone. (Season tickets mortgaged for 25 years)

8. Outside influences; (Green, Earl) making decisions purely for financial gain.

9. We were left behind as soon as the P.L. was formed, even though we instigated it's formation - Unbelievable Jeff!

10. Anyone who mentioned ambition was excluded from the club - even one of our greatest players, Neville Southall. Not very charitable now, eh Bill?

11. Missed opportunities - too many to list

12. I could go on, but I'm boring myself.

Only the people who run the club can decide where our 'rightful place' is. We know where that should be, but it's going to take great leadership and boatload of money to get back amongst the elite. I would say 50% of that chance has already been flushed. Moshiri's hands may be tied, or he has fell for the tall tales and gushing bollocks.

Christine Foster
21 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:52:07
We lost our rightful place at the top table with the emergence of Bill Kenwright and the woeful management of this club in his tenure right up to today. The hope faded when Kings Dock sank, with it did the pride and dreams of supporters who watched as we lost players, failed to deliver on a stadium, and had to put up with a chairman who at best is a proud Evertonian, at worst is a man who puts his own interests first and foremost.
Its a mute point if the decline started prior to his appointment to the board but he certainly has done little to prevent it. His legacy and influence remain like a pall over the club and even its new owner.

But his management and legacy has done damage to the one thing we have had in abundance. Our pride at being Evertonian. We must restore our pride and hope if we are to believe, if we are to lure the best, if we are to sit at the table again.

1. an immediate clear out of senior management of this club is a priority, the Chairman, manager, CEO and DOF

2. An appointment of a manager and a talent DoF who can work hand in hand.

3. A Vision and plan for the future laid out for all to see and get behind.
There is no automatic right to be a winner, but there is a right to have hope, restore pride and belief. They have failed and continue to fail and until they are gone, the decline and despair will continue.

Paul Ellam
22 Posted 03/05/2018 at 20:54:29
Matthew you are not alone.
I have been trawling out the trophies over places mantra for years now!
It's a no brainer for me.
We don't currently have the means to challenge for the title so what's left? To finish top 4? Qualify for Europe by finishing top 7?
If we actually put some effort into winning a damn cup we would qualify for Europe anyway!
This club needs a trophy - quick.
You only need to look over the park to see how that lot have managed to stay relevant and in the headlines - they haven't won the title since 1990 but have kept at the top table by winning cups throughout the last 25 years.
That has kept their fans relatively happy and I'm sure if we were to win a handful of cups over the next decade or so the majority of fans would be happy to be supporting a successful club.
The best way to attract players is by being successful and playing in Europe. Money helps obviously but good players want to play for clubs that challenge for honours, not places.
Once we are in the new stadium and have won some cups then we can start to say it's our time to win the league.
Let's take advantage of other clubs lack of interest in the cups and gobble them up oursleves!
Eddie McBride
23 Posted 03/05/2018 at 21:00:36
Nice article, Lyndon, with some very good points.

Si (#2) – What in the name of God are you on about? Do you know anything at all about Everton and their history? You really need to do some homework before you accuse Everton supporters of lacking class.

Tony Abrahams
24 Posted 03/05/2018 at 21:09:22
Kevin, and Christine,(great posts) Kenwright and the taking away of our pride. I used to love the timeline around Goodson Pk, because it showed Pride, History, and Class, but as someone once pointed out on ToffeeWeb, it stopped once the pauper, became the king.

Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 03/05/2018 at 21:20:46
Christine (21) great post Christine.

I would really love to know the history of Kenwright as an Evertonian, where and when did he really start following Everton, not this boys pen, which he is fond of talking about, is there anyone who follows Everton who knew Kenwright as a youngster who can back his stories of following Everton up, did anyone go to an away game with him, did anyone anywhere go to a game with him.

He got on Everton's Board,then bought the club, in cloudy circumstances, he has made brewsters out of the club with millions more to come and yet there is no real evidence that I have ever seen to prove he was the supporter he claims to be.

Someone, somewhere must be able to back his claims up. I would be very interested in their tales.

Matthew Williams
26 Posted 03/05/2018 at 21:28:39
Thanks Paul,at least I'm not alone on these pages,sadly though we're in a very small minority.


...So Chairman Matty what are Everton's plans & hopes for the new season ?.

...To play a decent brand of football that reminds me of the side we had in the '78 season with the will to win of the mid 80s teams the REAL BOSS managed,to leave the fans full of hope,smiles & counting down the minutes till our next game & to finally win the Trophy most Blues sadly have labelled Mickey Mouse,Tin Pot & totally meaningless...as for the rest of the campaign,I couldn't give a flying fuck !.

You won't get that with Mosh folks !!!.

Mike Galley
27 Posted 03/05/2018 at 21:57:16
Matthew, Paul, make that at least three of us!
Whilst I wouldn't down play regular Champions league participation, and the prestige and financial rewards that go with it, but if you offered me 14th place and a league cup triumph next season, I for one would gratefully accept it!
Matthew Williams
28 Posted 03/05/2018 at 22:30:18
Thanks Mike...good to hear some Blues still see what truly matters most,4th place wins us NOTHING !.
Mike Galley
29 Posted 03/05/2018 at 22:50:07
Personally, I think the excitement about the 'race for fourth place' is partially a media creation to maintain excitement in the league table for as long as possible. I think the advent of play offs in the lower divisions had the same logic.
As has been stated earlier, most club haven't a prayer of winning the champions league (hopefully that includes you know who).

Brian Wilkinson
30 Posted 03/05/2018 at 22:59:38
Dave Moyes, Van Gaal at utd, Brendon Rogers Liverpool, anyone spot a connection there along with others not listed.

Supporters of Utd and our neighbours wanted rid, the press and pundits backed this, fans deserve better.

Yet because it is not one of the sky darlings, they are doing everything they can to justify Everton sticking with Sam.

Pundits are all well at looking at bit match games and results, they are not the ones who have to sit through this awful football, week in, week out.

Has as much fuss been made on Wenger leaving Arsenal, they already have replacement suggestions lined up, none of the shite they have spouted about how lucky we are with Sam.

As long as Sam is here, they know the sky darlings are safe from anyone breaking through.

I am grateful for the safety Sam gave, on the other hand, I cannot sit through another season of his brand of football, time for change.

Ernie Baywood
31 Posted 03/05/2018 at 23:08:58
Good article and I think touches on some really good points.

To add one more. We're not Leeds, we're not Forest - we're 8th in the Premier League! So I completely get why those on the outside can't understand how we can be so angry at being just a few places off what we might think is our rightful place. To them, we're achieving positions they dream of and are practically in the mix. To younger fans I'm sure it's even more baffling.

On the inside, we know it's not the position. It's the lack of ambition to improve it. We might as well be 17th for all it matters.

Before the season we all posted our minimum expectations for the season. Mine was to play better football which would give us greater potential and represent progress. I was comfortable with finishing 7th again. After all, we were so far away from 6th and 8th last season.

I had pretty conservative minimum standards there. And I'd say the club missed them by a mile and will miss them again this season under the current manager. That makes it reasonable to want change doesn't it? Sam doesn't fit with what I'm assuming is our plan. Or do we not actually care about making progress?

Ian Pilkington
32 Posted 03/05/2018 at 00:08:05
Excellent article by Lyndon and a particularly good response by Christine @21.
Sadly there are still many fans who cannot accept that the constant factor in the record period of our history without a trophy has been the baleful influence of Bill Kenwright.
Kevin @20 recalling Moyes’ final match at Goodison 5 years ago reminded me of the sickening feeling I had leaving the ground at the final whistle, walking away towards Kirkdale Station almost alone whilst the cheering crowd celebrated a manager who couldn’t manage an away win in 44 attempts against the so called “big four”.
Thankfully there has been some progress since then, as the majority the fan base is no longer prepared to tolerate another manager of the same ilk.

Tony Marsh
33 Posted 03/05/2018 at 00:45:46
The problem we have as a fan base and as a club is we all live in the past far too much. This article is all about how great we once were and somehow that means we should be great today. Being the first club in the world to have a four-sided football stadium makes people laugh if you say it to them. It really doesn't matter and no-one cares unless it's our fans. We've won nothing for decades but Goodison Park used to be great!!!

The truth is, the past has nothing to do with today's football. The game is completely different from when we last won a trophy – never mind last won a league title. Players are not the same either. Pride has made way for money. Players now couldn't give a shit about Everton winning the FA Cup in 1966 or whenever.

There are 9 league titles we fans love to talk about winning yet only 3 of them were after WW2, were they not? Before the war, deep-sea diving boots and jumpers for goal posts were the order of the day. Players smoking on the tram and downing pints in the boozer before kick-off, etc. Are any of you seriously telling me that results back then and trophies won has any bearing on today's game? Football today is almost a completely different sport.

When you think of teams winning stuff in the days before and just after WW2, it is not taken seriously by anyone who has been brought up on the Premier League. To most people involved in football now — this includes press, players, fans, chairman and broadcasters — football was re-inveted in the early 90s and, unless you were either Man Utd or Liverpool, nothing any other clubs achieved in the past mattered. It was a new level playing field were past glories are considered obsolete.

Ask supporters of a certain age from clubs around the country who Dixie Dean was and they haven't a clue. I have spoken to people on my travels who don't know Everton FC is in the city of Liverpool. How bad is that??

The truth is, the past does not matter if your relevant history is as far back in time as this club's history is. Chelsea first and now Man City — along with Sky Sports — have been re-writing the football script and we are not in that script. Even when we were good, we were never better than Liverpool. Hard to say but true.

Everton FC are not and never will be dining at the top table. We missed that chance when Kings Dock went belly up. Everything we do now is far too late. The big boys have taken all the seats. We are not even considered. 9 league titles, Dixie Dean's 60 goals and the School of Science count for nothing if you don't have a new stadium and play in the Champions League every season. It is embarrassing to talk of these things nowadays.

Our past is merely a thought stream. A fond childhood memory. Our past history has as much relevance today as the invention of a VHS tape recorder or maybe even a Betamax. I don't dwell in the club's history — I live in the now moment and, at this moment, we have been sold down the river again by Bill Kenwright.

Christopher Timmins
34 Posted 04/05/2018 at 07:35:32
A great article and some great follow up posts. We have to accept that pundits can point to the fact that apart from 1 FA Cup win that we have won nothing in 25 years so who do we think we are complaining about our current plight. Was it Kenwright who called us an "Industrial Club" a number of years ago.

It will be a long march back to the top table but if there is one small crumb of comfort to take from this season it must be that we can't be as bad next season and we are still likely to finish 8th. If Moshi really has the desire to make us a competitive top 7 club, the other 6 are not going away, then he will have to take another calculated risk in the summer and appoint a young ambitious manager. Unfortunately, clubs who have won nothing since the mid 1990's don't really have a shot at appointing a Conte or a Simeone.

Brian Porter
35 Posted 04/05/2018 at 08:18:01
Si #2, I'd be interested to know what age bracket you fall into, purely because of your 'classless' comment. If you think 'class' means sitting back like so many sheep and accepting the dross Allardyce serves up under the guise of football, then OK, I am classless, because after 60 years of supporting this great club, I an not sit idly by while some pundits and supporters seem to want to praise Allardyce for doing a great job in keeping us in the Premier League. After 8 or 9 games we were not in a relegation fight. If we'd been in the bottom three at Christmas I might have understood Moshiri's panic decision to appoint Fireman Sam.

Even after reaching 40 points and being safe from any threat of relegation, Allardyce refuses to throw off the shackles and prove he can get a team to play a bit of open, attacking, ENTERTAINING football.

There is an old quotation that said, 'The way for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.' Well, to tweak it a little, I say the way for apathy to triumph is for good men and women to do nothing. Just sit back and meekly accept the awful anti-football being churned out under Allardyce's leadership of that's the' class' thing to do. Me, I'd rather see more banners, hear more shouting against the abysmal manager Moshiri has saddled us with. After 60 years, I think I can tell a good team from a bad team, and a good manager from a poor one, and if Moshiri needs reminding of just how the fans feel about Allardyce then it's not for anyone else to deride them and deny them their right to protest, classless or not.

John McGimpsey
36 Posted 04/05/2018 at 08:59:07
Protest plain and simple, forget class because class gets you nowhere.

Aim it at everyone — Blue Bill, Big and Little Sam, the Jock etc... make it known far and wide we don't care what pundits say — we want shut!!!

The walkout is the best idea, shout loud at 18 mins, applaud little Alfie on 23. Then go balls out till 78 mins and walk out... too many luvvies and pussies around.

Si Pulford
38 Posted 04/05/2018 at 09:22:05

I'm in my 40s and have seen plenty of dross in my time. You seem to have missed the point that I absolutely agree it's time for Allardyce to go and would drive him to the airport myself. I just don't accept that after fulfilling his brief he should be derided and unappreciated. He did what he was asked to do. Now we part ways. Sorry if that's too amicable and you believe that we should all be screaming obscenities at him like school children but I don't.

Also. The age thing?!! What has that got to do with the price of fish?! Being 60 doesn't mean your opinion is instantly more valid than a 40 or even a 20-year-old.

Don't forget You're trying to sack a manger closer to your age and replace him with one closer to my age.

Mike Galley
39 Posted 04/05/2018 at 09:27:02
With the heaviest of hearts I'm afraid I'm in full agreement with Tony#33. It worries me how little we're thought of, or indeed known about, by the modern day young football fan.
I'm afraid they see us as an Aston Villa/leeds/Newcastle type club. Obviously, we'll never see ourselves like that, but I'm afraid that's how we appear to these fans.
James Flynn
40 Posted 04/05/2018 at 10:02:07
. . . . . . subservient displays at home to the two Manchester clubs."

Ouch!, ". . . . . . subservient displays at home to the two Manchester clubs."

Ouch!,,,1,09:58:07,,,ok,4506,05/04/2018 09:58:07,MattysSon,reader,, 915107,36601,toffeeweb,04/05/2018,John Graham ,graham.john@blueyonder.co.uk,"Great news.

Looks like he is developing nicely, and he is saying all the right things. Hope he makes a good challenge for the first team next season and gets a lot of games.

Good luck and long may you stay here.

Steve Solomon
41 Posted 04/05/2018 at 10:28:10
Paul (#22) I agree completely.
But adding that the aim for a top 7 finish and focusing on the cups would give us experience in Europe, which is something we clearly lack. I think if we had 5 or 6 seasons in Europa league we would attract better players and managers as well, not to mention decent sponsorship and additional broadcast rights. That would set us up nicely for the new stadium timing wise.
Europe in any format must be our initial target. We can't compete yet for the title (barring a Leicester type miracle - yeah right).
Si Pulford
42 Posted 04/05/2018 at 10:41:03
From reading the comments here it's plain to see that screaming abuse at BFS misdirected. Protest by all means.

But shout at the right people.

BFS has been at the club for a few months and probably won't be here next season. Let's not act like he's some kind of catalyst for failure when we haven't won a thing for a quarter of a century.

Id love to know where Brian or John expected BFS to finish the season. When he took over there was an overwhelming air of ‘let's just steady the ship and get this season out of the way' that seemed to be the expectations of 99% of blues. So he takes over and does that (shocking football but functional)

One place higher than the current ‘disaster' would have qualified for Europe after taking over a shit storm. Did anybody really honestly think ‘right, I fully expect this team who are getting creamed every week to finish in a European place? NO!

I'd still sack him but honestly, is screaming abuse at him and vilifying him not playing into the hands of the real ‘smoke and mirrors' merchant here?!

Bill has allowed the fan base to create a pantomime villain (the beautifully timed survey ring any bells) and now the fans are reacting.

Who should the survey really say should leave this club?

Andrew Clare
43 Posted 04/05/2018 at 11:11:24
For all of the doom and gloom above Everton are still one of the best supported clubs in the country. In the right hands with strong leadership things could change for us very rapidly. It is essential that progressive people with good football knowledge are brought into the club. The potential here is massive. We must get rid of the people responsible for the past twenty plus years of mediocrity. Moshiri needs a football brain at the club who will spend wisely accompanied by a manager who has a clear vision of the future. Regardless of history Everton have a very passionate following who will create an unmatched atmosphere anywhere if their team is playing expansive attacking football. Someone has just got to spark the club back to life.
Dermot Byrne
44 Posted 04/05/2018 at 11:16:43
For all of the doom and gloom above Everton are still one of the best supported clubs in the country."

In top 10?,"For all of the doom and gloom above Everton are still one of the best supported clubs in the country."

In top 10?,,,1,11:15:16,,,ok,19546,05/04/2018 11:15:16,debyrne,reader,, 915118,36599,toffeeweb,04/05/2018,Rick Tarleton,rttsjt@gmail.com,"The problems stem from the last years of the Grantchester ownership, through Johnson and onto Kenwright. For basically thirty years we have been badly owned and since Kendall Mark1 we have not had an outstanding manager. In fact, from Walker onwards, despite sentimental attachments from some to Joe Royle's "Dogs of War", we have had a series of disasters.

During this period we have slipped from one of the big five to a club alongside, Newcastle, West Ham and even Leicester, far below the level of the six giants.

Expectations on the pitch now regard a sixth place as a good season. We have won one FA Cup and that's our one trophy in the last thirty years. "Nil satis nisi optimum" and "The School of Science" are epithets that no longer have any relevance to Everton.
We are now a selling club, not exactly Southampton, but we sell our best players: Lineker, Steven, Stevens, Rooney, Lescott, Lukaku etc, I'm sure you can all add many more names.

Somehow the after-effects of Heysel ironically affected Everton far more than Liverpool.

How will this decline stop? The first priority ought to be the new ground at Bramley-Moore Dock and the real ownership being taken away from Kenwright.

We need a manager with a long-term vision and we need to back that vision. In the short term we need a trophy, a League Cup, we still have not won that trophy after sixty years, or an FA Cup to reinstall interest and enthusiasm. We need an identity that does not just depend on history and knowing your history.

It's a huge task and one that will tax the owner, the managers and his team, and the supporters themselves. But unless there is some sign of progress our future is more likely to resemble teams like Villa, Sunderland and Sheffield Wednesday rather than the six giants who are dominating our Premiership.

David Harrison
45 Posted 04/05/2018 at 11:42:04
Another great read. It almost seems as if Lyndon keeps planting his flag in the sand to try and rally us all out of the stupor that so many years of mediocrity and media indifference have ingrained in us. Only this morning, it is depressing to see us in the bottom half of the Premier League table for turnover, behind Southampton FFS and way behind Leicester. I feel ground down by the whole shooting match.

Without a new ground our rightful place may well be with the likes of Villa, Leeds etc. It really feels like the Moshiri project is our last hope... if that goes tits up I'm not sure I'll have the energy to expect anything other than the odd shaft of light as the perma-darkness descends.

Steve Ferns
46 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:18:34
Rick it goes all the way back to the very early 80’s and the decline in health of Sir John. We were left with no drive in the boardroom. The exceptional management of Kendall (mark I) disguised that, and papered over the cracks, we did splash a few quid under Harvey, but that was the last time Everton came close to breaking the British transfer record and the managers who followed Harvey had to cut their cloth to suit.

Perhaps Sir John should have abdicated sooner and done more to ensure the long term success of his beloved club.

Steve Ferns
47 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:31:14
Leicester won the league with a side that had largely fought relegation just months before.

The only real signing made to the relegation battlers was Kante. Of course they changed their manager and before you can say dilly-ding, dilly-dong they were at the top of the table were they remained.

Everton can get there. Kendall showed the blueprint in 1984. A young team with a few astute signings to compliment them.

We need an outstanding young coach who can bring the best out of our talented youngsters and bring out the best in our misfiring expensive signings.

It’s essier for our next manager, whoever that may be, to win the league than it was for Leicester. We only need to improve 7 places, they had to turn the league on its head, and then some.

Coaching and continuity is what we need. It can be done in a short time as well, a few months for Leicester. Spurs have had slow progression and still have yet to win something.

To win the league you need a great team, not necessarily great players. That comes from the coach. Often teams with no standout player win the league. Why can’t we get a manager / coach in with a plan, belief, determination, and work ethic to win the league? Such people are usually not already trophy laden managers, but young hungry up and comers. Settling for mid table is wrong. We need to aim for the top.

Steve Brown
48 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:32:17
19th out of the 20 clubs in the Premier League when it comes to the number of shots on Allardyce’s watch, 19th in terms of efforts on target, 19th in chances created and 19th for attempted dribbles. Is that the job that Allardyce came to do? Even if it is, you would have to be a sado-masochist to want him to carry on doing it.

Agree wholeheartedly with Jay 7 and Christine 21 about the need for complete change to deal with institutionalised failure off the field. But if the fans have such low standards as to accept the utter shit we have been served by Allardyce, there is no reason for that change.

So, protest on Saturday - 18 minute turn your backs, 78 minute walk out. If we don't, then we have no right to say anything any more.

Steve Brown
49 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:38:34
One of the best supported clubs in the country?!

We are like the People's Front of Judea. Take a motion Reg.

Dermot Byrne
50 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:43:12
Steve B fair and funny point if it wasn't so sad.

But...in the age of soc media, a new ground and little bit of success, people soon change their minds about who is cool.

Dave Ganley
51 Posted 04/05/2018 at 12:56:07
I completely agree with your sentiments, Lyndon. We are a big club, we should have a place at the top table. I hasten to add that nobody deserves a place: you earn it. The RS lost that place for a while and they have now earned it back.

My thoughts on where it all went wrong was after Heysel. Instead of preparing to get back in Europe after the ban, we sulked and sulked, allowed our best players and our manager to leave and replaced them with substandard replacements.

Crikey, we call the RS victims but our bleating during and since that period put them to shame. Yes they caused the ban but did you hear the Mancs or arsenal or anybody else go on and on about it? No they just got the best sides they could and got on with it. We on the other hand continued to complain and we had some awful years, barring the 95 cup win up until the 2000s.

Christine is absolutely right concerning Kenwright. He has undoubtedly held us back with some shocking mismanagement, notably kings dock. He should go as soon as Moshiri can get rid, hopefully August.

Moyes, for all his detractors, pieced this club back together and built probably the best side since the 80s from around 2007 to 2009. Considering the money he spent, or not, the side had some great players. Cahill, Jags, Lescott, Arteta, Pienaar and Baines, the Yak before he was injured, really good team. Ironically, upon building that side it was him that held it back with his inability to believe in himself and the team away from home. We were certainly good enough. The performances and results at Goodison against the better teams bear witness to that. That team was good enough to win a trophy and break that top 4 glass ceiling. A shame and that's when Kenwright should have showed ambition after the 2009 FA Cup Final by saying thanks David, you've done a wonderful job putting us on the map again but we need someone new to take us forward. Instead, it drifted and when Moyes went at his own choosing we have had a succession of awful managers with absolutely no homework done on them to see what they bring to the table.

I read a comment of Martinez's "golden season". Blimey, it was taking a well-organised team and letting it run. We plucked 5th place from the jaws of 4th and you could see it heading only one way towards the end of that season when Martinez's influence on a decent squad took hold.

Flakey is how I'd describe Martinez's tenure. Lost all fight and pride for the shirt. Less said about Koeman the better. As for Allardyce, well how anyone can say give him another season is beyond me, that really is accepting mediocrity to a new level. Should never be at the club. It's not his fault the state we are in, but he won't make it any better.

For all that I don't understand all the negativity about the way forward. We need a young hungry manager who has up to date ideas about how the game is played. You can't help but look at what Klopp has done across the park. The bought Salah Mane and Firmino for what is now nominal fees. None of the so-called money clubs wanted them. Bit of proper research on their behalf to find decent players that would buy into the club. The rest of the team are pretty average tbh but they play like a team. A bit like Moyes side of 2007. Work hard and use a bit of football intelligence. They showed Citeh how it's done. If you press these sides and work hard they all make mistakes. You need the right attitude which is something we've not had for about 5 years. Man Utd aren't all that, neither are Chelski or Arsenal and Spurs can be matched too. If you sit back and let these sides play then they will destroy you but if you get at them and harass them then it's game on. You don't have to be stupid and go gung-ho but they are all beatable.

I'm sick and tired of the naysayers that say we will never get back. We will if we can get a manager who will get the players fit, find a couple of gems (they are out there) and have a positive attitude. Ffs the RS are in CL final, who would have thought that with their defence and midfield. Nothing is impossible if we get the right manager. It will be impossible if we keep Allardyce though that you can guarantee.

A place at the top table awaits, we just need to take it.

Paul Birmingham
52 Posted 04/05/2018 at 13:56:05
Excellent posts on this thread. To a degree, we've become prisoners of the past, and sadly it don't count other than for posterity.

The decline of the club is notable and is known by many fans of football in the UK and across the globe.

The board have got to get their act together soon, and be decisive, instead of living in the land of make-believe. Being an Evertonian fan, does carry a health warning. The current board leaders in the club, have lost the connection.

John Moores, Jim Greenwood, Sir Phil Carter wouldn't have let this demise to have taken such a hold on the club.

I'm banking now – based on the press, The Dixies – that there will be no manager change after West Ham. There will be a fire sale for some of the dead wood, and then the club will soldier on next season. I hope I'm wrong.

Frank McGregor
53 Posted 04/05/2018 at 13:57:43
I am really disappointed that Sam Allardyce ever came to Everton Football Club. We should have stuck with Koeman and played the season out and finished two points above West Brom and then played our School of Science soccer in the Championship and everyone would be happy not having to slam the current manager.

Yes, Everton will fit nicely along clubs like Sunderland, Leeds United, Aston Villa etc.

Amit Vithlani
54 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:08:43
"Everton FC are not and never will be dining at the top table. "

Not according to Farhad Moshiri when he took over:

"There has never been a more level playing field in the Premier League than now. Bill Kenwright has taught me what it means to be an Evertonian and I look forward with excitement to working with him to help deliver success for Everton in the future.”

Never has there been a more LEVEL playing field than now

And from Moshiri's first managerial appointment, Koeman, in 2017:

"The next step is to be closer to the teams above us in the table and that's sometimes difficult. Maybe it's now five, six or seven points, but we need to make the next step and the next step is Champions League."

So, rightly or wrongly certain levels of expectations were set, not by the fans, but by individuals in senior positions within the club.

Should they not be held to account for the disintegration of the club's top 4 targets? Should we accept dining at the lesser table when they themselves set the bar?

Steve Ferns
55 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:12:38
Paul, it is my belief that the demies started on Sir Philip’s watch. Whether he could have done anything about it as not even the best team in the land (which we were) was making much money in the 80s. By the end of the 80s we were a mess off the field and that’s what let Johnson in. Depending on your view, Kenwright has either continued the mismanagement or has kept us afloat.
Jonathan Tasker
56 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:20:31
Boycott totally the Southampton match.
Sean Patton
57 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:22:01
I've always felt you cant really tell another clubs fans what to do because as a neutral you don't get to see the team every week and aren't party to the goings on.

Frankly what Everton fans what is none of Crooks or Shearers business or any of the other rentagob pundits they can save their palliative cliches for some other poor sap.

Pete Clarke
58 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:23:36
All supporters, from any club at any level have the right to want more from the clubs they support. Not every club has won trophies but that should not make a difference when it comes to ambition or sometimes just plain wishful thinking.

Our most recent opposition make interesting reading having won the league 3 times on the trot many moons ago. They even went over 40 games unbeaten just a few years ago and came close to creating a record.

I remember arguing with a Geordie about Everton and our history. He never had a clue that we had more trophies than them and, in fact, I rubbed it in that Sunderland had more trophies than them.

They are both clubs who along with many others could claim to belong with the Elite but just like us, they are now relying on history. They both have nice shiny stadiums by the way but it has not helped them too much because of the instability of ownership.

I cannot stand Bill Kenwright. He believes that he saved us but, for me, he just got in the way at the most important time in English top flight football. The Premiership always brought in good returns and he knew it.

His appointment of David Moyes probably saved his ownership though as Moyes more than steadied the ship and yet at the same time he did not believe in himself or his team To go for it against the money clubs.

The end of Moyes's reign at Everton showed Bill Kenwright for all he is. A big phoney. He should have sacked Moyes but then I imagine it was all pre-planned and he was compensated by Manure.

Back to the subject though. I feel that for us to claw our way back into the big time we are going to need a manager who wants to make his mark in the game but is very tactically aware. One who is bright and yet fearless. A manager who relishes the challenge of taking his team to Anfield, Old Trafford and White Hart Lane with nothing more than victory in his thoughts.

There are probably very few out there with these special attributes and we may not realise they have it until they are given a go. Simeone is in this category but surely he's not alone out there.

Moshiri then needs to surround himself with people who understand the business we are in and get rid of all the amateurs we have got now.

Tony Everan
59 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:30:17
Thank you, Lyndon, for another super article.

With our levels of investment our club ‘deserves' to be 7th. Ask the bookies in August; they will say it too.

We have to ask a simple question, what can we do better than all those 6 teams above us?

1. Get a young progressive manager with potential who they may end up envying.

2. Better Scouting.

3. A big one, see No 2, Sign better players than them.

4. Have better training and fitness regimes than the 6 teams above us.

5. Have more unity than them amongst the fans, club and players.

6. A better youth set up.

7. Compete with attendances with those above us.

8. Compete with revenue streams.

We need to be narrowing the gap and the club needs to be professional about it.

Organised and professional with a clear and ruthless plan, starting now for next season.

Nobody minds a work in progress. As long as there is progress.

Brian Williams
60 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:32:31
Si. What you haven't "got" is that doing nothing isn't having class, just as doing something isn't being lacking in class. You haven't got that, if you want change, you have to be prepared to do something about it.

What you haven't got is an understanding of what most of us want and what most of us are willing to do in pursuit of taking the club we love forward.

What you haven't got is an understanding of the strength of feeling against the present manager and his way of going about things, like dropping players in it, dropping Everton employees in it, and accepting no responsibility when things go wrong.

What you haven't got is an understanding that booing and negative chanting is one of the very few ways supporters at the game can make known their feelings.

What you haven't got is the gut-wrenching feeling when you trudge out of Goodison Park after watching some of the poorest football on show there for a long time having either just lost to a top side or maybe beaten a bottom side after boring them half to death.

So, there's lots of things you "just haven't got" in my opinion.

But you carry on showing your "class" and happily clapping while accepting shite of the highest order. I'll be classless and trying to change things for the better while those who won't, or don't want to, sit quietly and benefit from the efforts of others.

Matthew Williams
61 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:34:37
Some brilliant posts on this thread; it's looking like the Saints game tomorrow evening could be very interesting all round.

Maybe a real turning point coming... I just hope we can start targeting silverware that is truly achievable first & foremost.

Andy Meighan
62 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:38:13
Another journalistic masterpiece, Lyndon, and some great posts from the boys. But do we really expect anything other than mediocrity from our club while that moron Kenwright is still hovering like a shitehawk? His inane ramblings about Dave Hickson, the Boys Pen, getting carried on Uncle Cyril's shoulders etc. It's embarrassing.

As long as we tread water in the cash cow that is the Premier League, well, he's more than happy. No ambition whatsoever and actually praising Allardyce at the Dixies (feigns to vommit) for getting us up to 8th, also apologising to him over the survey A complete and utter coward.

As Jay (#7) said, we merit no better because of 25 years of inept governance – and isn't that spot on? Now he's practically handed the baton over to that grinning clown Moshiri... another cretin who talks complete and utter shite.

The AGM anyone and please spare me the sanctimonious shit about, "Well, he's a billionaire he must know what he's doing."

As regards football matters, he knows Jack Shit. Witness his handling of the manager's job when Ronnie Boy got the 9, 10, Jack... Embarrassing.

Cap in hand to a dinosaur who's style of football is so bad, I could cry. No, I'm sorry, but – while these two are continuing to run us – this malaise is set to continue.

Steve Ferns
63 Posted 04/05/2018 at 14:49:30
Tony, it's as simple as having a better team.

The question is do you need to sign players or can you develop them. I would argue that our academy is one of the best out there. That the only way it could be better is if we had Chelsea style youth recruitment.

Napoli's Sarri said that the transfer market is “the refuge of the weak”. How many players are bought because they seem great but they then flop.

You're taking a jigsaw piece and hoping it slots into your own jigsaw and makes it better. There's no guarantee.

The problem with developing players is that they can only be as good as their potential. I believe and I believe it firmly that English players are not reaching their potential because they are not getting the opportunities that Tom Davies has got.

We need a great young coach, with a load more good coaches and to develop what we have:
- Jonjoe Kenny
- Mason Holgate
- Lewis Gibson
- Antonee Robinson
- Callum Connolly
- Morgan Feeney
- Tom Davies
- Beni Baningime
- Anthony Gordon
- Anthony Evans
- Kieran Dowell
- Joe Williams
- Josh Bowler
- Harry Charsley
- Fraser Hornby
- Bassala Sambou
- and probably more I missed off

These could all make the grade. In our squad we have:
- Cuco Martina
- Ramiro Funes Mori
- Ashley Williams
- Yannick Bolasie
- Idrissa Gueye
- Morgan Schneiderlin
- Cenk Tosun

Some of them, like Tosun and Gueye, seem like good, honest, hard-working pros, but are any of them really exceptional? Surely a great coach could work with the raw materials in the first list and with time make them as good if not better than the second list?

Isn't it time we stopped signing journeymen players for a quick fix? We need to use what we have and develop it, only making signings to fix deficiencies.

Amit Vithlani
64 Posted 04/05/2018 at 15:02:22
"With our levels of investment our club ‘deserves’ to be 7th."

Err, we ranked 4th in net spend across the last 2 windows which we were able to as Moshiri injected 150m of his own wonga into the club.

Moshiri also said the following:

"As long as I am a major shareholder financial issues are irrelevant".

So forgive me if I am led to believe that money is not the issue when it comes to the club setting a TARGET of top 4/dining at the top table.

I think it has more to do with the hierarchy's lack of:
- competency
- nous
- will power
- tenacity
- ambition

There is absolutely nothing stopping the club emulating Spurs, if the hierarchy pulls its finger out of its arse and, instead of sniffing it, points it in the direction of a manager hired to yank this playing squad by the collar into the top 4 as Poch did.

Craig Walker
65 Posted 04/05/2018 at 15:27:50
Amrit, I agree with what you are saying. However, for all of Spurs' qualities, they haven't won anything yet. They had a great chance to pip Leicester to the title a couple of seasons ago and ended up finishing below Arsenal. For all of Arsenal's failings, they've won more than Spurs in the past 5 years. If they don't win something soon, their star players will be off.

I must admit that they are on a different level to us in terms of their team, style of play and their new ground. However, Spurs fans are starting to get a bit restless that they might have wasted their 'golden generation'.

Amit Vithlani
66 Posted 04/05/2018 at 15:30:27
This, from CEIS Football Observatory, should be pinned on the wall of our board room, managers office, DoF's office. It supports Steve Fern's assessment that a good coaching and scouting set up holds the key to success. Extrapolate that to levels of ambition and our rightful place, it suggests that a "Moneyball" model, as famously deployed by the Oakland A's, coupled with the investment we so clearly have, could yield rich dividends:

"3. Stability and success

The analysis of stability according to clubs’ sporting level reveals the existence of a general rule: the best performing teams have much more stable squads than the least competitive ones. As illustrated in Figure 5, the percentage of new signings decreases for each club sporting level category: from 42.4% for the least performing teams to 31.3% for the most competitive ones.

​Figure 5: % of new signings and sporting level of teams* (2009-2017)​

This finding highlights the relationship between stability and performance. It reflects the difficulties for teams with few financial means available to set up long-term squad planning. It also shows their tendency to over-speculate on the transfer market. This process often brings about a vicious circle of instability and poor results.

Apart from a lack of vision and resources, corruption is also an issue. As a considerable amount of money circulates through transfers, notably under the form of commission fees for intermediaries with close relationships with club officials, player trading may be easily directed towards personal profit rather than the sporting interest of teams.

As shown in Figure 6, clubs having won their league with the highest percentage of new signings are all situated in countries where squads are generally unstable. "

Amit Vithlani
67 Posted 04/05/2018 at 15:38:41
Craig. You equate success to winning trophies. I equate it to the following:

"There is a strong case to be made, however, for one club’s place at that proverbial top table being “rightful” (which is not to say we should be winning everything but these days we should at least be perennial contenders)."

Lyndon is echoing what many are saying: be ambitious and compete hard. The Spurs fans I know do indeed want to see a trophy being captured, but they do not see it as a divine right. What they do absolutely demand is being "perrenial contenders" as Lyndon so eloquently puts it.

We are not perrenial contenders for a UEFA spot, never mind titles, and Allardyce's continued employment at this club points to that trend continuing based on his own measures of success and ambition.

Gerard McKean
68 Posted 04/05/2018 at 15:40:25
Like you, Dave #25, I’ve always been deeply suspicious of Kenwright and his motives. A friend who was at primary school with him remembers only a posh kid who lived on Mather Avenue who showed no interest in football or sport generally. I know a lot can change after the age of 11, but living on Mather in the 1950’s and the Boys’Pen? Really?

And Steve #56, yes the rot did begin with Carter. When Thatcher, not UEFA as many people still think, decided to ban English clubs from European competition, and we all know what effect that had on the then arguably best team in Europe, she was fully supported by the Chairman of that team, Everton FC, because his greater loyalty was clearly to the Tory Party, of which he was in charge in Liverpool at the time.

Carter and Kenwright enjoyed a cosy back scratching relationship and formed a very exclusive little club, which you only get to join and stay in if you follow the rules. Rule 1: Bill is Mr Everton and you must always always promote this. This is also rules 2,3,4 and 5. There are 5 rules. Some people don’t always understand this, such as Lord Grantchester. Others believe the rules are too lax and seek ways to strengthen them with liberal doses of sycophancy, such as Barrett Baxendale. Name a stand after Sir Philip anyone? By the way did anyone else notice how the Park End suddenly became a Park Stand?

Lyndon’s article is bang on the money. We have the right. I have said this before on other threads, if we the fans do not remember that we are Everton then nobody else will. For 20 years this club has been a cash cow. Nobody in the very senior roles at the club has the competence or ambition to return us to our rightful place. Many people warn that we must get the right Manager in next time. For me it is just as important to get the right CEO and business team in place, and just as we won’t look for the next Manager internally we should definitely avoid even thinking about an internal appointment for the next CEO. Alas, if Kenwright is still there I fear that is already a done deal and we face many more years of mediocrity.

Si Pulford
69 Posted 04/05/2018 at 16:09:42
Brian I’m assuming you’re so proactive and such a top blue that you’ll be voting with your feet tomorrow? will you walk out on 78 minutes, or boycott completely?

Neither will make a jot of difference unless everyone does it. And we both know they won’t. As it is you may get a few walk out. You may get a few give up and sit back down.

Your using the failings of a manager I want sacked as a stick to beat me with?! Bizzare. I want him gone and I’m sure he will be gone. Most of the things I ‘don't Get’ you have no idea of my opinion on?

But you crack on. Power to the people and all that.

Christine Foster
70 Posted 04/05/2018 at 16:53:37
We spend hours navel gazing and looking at the things that are wrong, the cause but much less time on the solution. Easy to say because we have no influence directly on that solution. (on any solution for that matter) but picking through the threads a couple of themes hold true.

1. We cannot live in the past nor assume the right of any privilege from anyone.

2. Because of the management incompetence for over 20 years we missed opportunities that others grasped and we are paying for it now.

3. Change will come only when there is a desire to change at the very top of this club.

Ok, but hope for the latter is in short supply because we have not seen the progress we need or want from an inexperienced owner who listens to much to his chairman.

I believe we are were we are today as a result of bad decisions made by incompetent directors and senior management that has continued unabated until the new owner came on board.

If reports are correct we should be free of messers Kenwright and Elstone at the end of the season. Good riddance in my book for I believe Moshiri has erroneously listened to Kenwright and allowed Elstone to carry on as if nothing has happened. But I think that changed when after investing so heavily Moshiri was horrified to see the incompetence of transfers and playing squad decisions without rhyme or reason.

His decision, and I believe it was his alone, to appoint Allardyce was a regrettable but understandable knee jerk reaction to the incompetence around him.

But now the time has come for change.
Stadium, Manager, Chairman, CEO, DoF, playing staff...

Now is the time NOT to listen to Kenwright anymore, or anyone at the club to be frank, but to listen to the fans, take serious advice from winners, be decisive and take control of the club and its future.

Change will only happen if Moshiri embraces it and we will drive and support it.

Jack Convery
71 Posted 04/05/2018 at 17:10:53
Great article - Nail hit on head as usual. I just despair of EFC these days I really do. Roll on August when a new hope will dawn again !!
Matthew Williams
72 Posted 04/05/2018 at 17:24:07
Success IS winning trophies,maybe this will really hit home to ALL Blues if the r.s bag their 6th European Cup in a few weeks.

No doubt they'll only do it by winning it using their usual shithouse route mind...Penalty Shootout !.

It's about time this route was closed for ALL teams...to me Man.City are the best team on the planet currently anyroad.

Jay Harris
73 Posted 04/05/2018 at 19:07:36
Great article Lyndon and good to see you back on form Christine.

The passion of Evertonians should never be suppressed.

Make Kenwright life president of Eitc and get a proper chairman in who has integrity and desire for excellence.

Get a top quality DOF in together with a CEO if Elstone is going and let them set out the plan and recruit a coach to replace SA.

My personal preferences include David Dein and Wenger(CEO and DOF), Monchi and Emery (DOF and manager), Cortese and Les Reed (CEO and DOF).
I am not sure about Brands as he appears to be reluctant and his experience is mainly in the Dutch league.

Tom Barton
74 Posted 04/05/2018 at 19:21:10
Mr Gerard Mckean @ 69.

Never a truer word said. I cannot make public one or two things, but your comments are far closer to the truth than even you may know.

David Currie
75 Posted 04/05/2018 at 20:14:21
Great post by Tony Marsh 33.
Daniel A Johnson
76 Posted 04/05/2018 at 20:29:04
Question: So Alan Shearer and Garth Crooks, Mauricio Pochettino and Rafa Benitez have left your respective clubs. Would you take Sam Allardyce as your manager?

The answer would be a resounding NO.

Pundits are there to promote their own clubs and any chance of keeping a rival club down such as Everton will be seized with both hands. Shearer and Crooks know were going nowhere under Allardyce so of course they are happy to see that continue under Big Sam.

Joe McMahon
77 Posted 04/05/2018 at 20:47:15
Tony Marsh (33) Man take a bow - superb post!

I coudn't aggree more, people banging on about Dixie, christ in those days footballers were nearly playing in flat caps. Then I hear and read (on here) fans wanting part of the "new stadium" having Leitch criss-crossed design in it Really FFS. I do remember the great 80's teams, I was there when Andy Gray scored the diving headers v Sunderalnd and I was 15, i'm now 48 and it's all in the past. It's now that matters. No wonder liverpool fans just laugh a us.

Steve Ferns
78 Posted 04/05/2018 at 20:51:50
Except he’s factually incorrect. Which of Catterick’s two titles or Kendall’s two titles did you forget Tony?
Gerard McKean
79 Posted 04/05/2018 at 21:00:21
Thanks Tom #75, I appreciate your comment, but I do know what I’m saying. I say less than I actually know not because I’m afraid to speak out but rather in the hope that by taking things slowly I won’t come across as “off my head”.

In particular, I sense that many TW readers/posters tend generously to give Barrett Baxendale the benefit of the doubt. As in, ah she’s a lovely girl, does loads for charity etc. Nothing could be further from the truth, but I don’t think people are ready for the truth yet.

All I will say at this point is that she’s a malevolent force behind the scenes and if her personal goal of becoming CEO comes to fruition we are well and truly on the road to oblivion. Hey but if she gets a peerage out of it, who are we to complain?

Tony Abrahams
80 Posted 04/05/2018 at 21:08:49
He might be factually incorrect Steve, but he's also bang on the money, with regards to what we have become though.

Gerard@69, what a sentence mate, it's really resonated in my brain because at the minute I'm totally bored with football and especially Everton, and reading through ToffeeWeb, I don't think I'm alone.

IF WE THE FANS DO NOT REMEMBER THAT WE ARE EVERTON, THEN NOBODY ELSE WILL. Brilliant that Gerard, but I think too many people have already forgot?

Kevin Tully
81 Posted 04/05/2018 at 22:01:17
Just watching Brighton v Utd. To think, they've been in administration, played Conference League football, built a modern stadium, and are now they're not far behind us in PL prize money.

Meanwhile, the King of Corrie sits on his throne, richer than he could ever dream of from putting on a few musicals. He is an absolute financial and psychological genius. Don't let anyone ever tell you any differently.

He knows precisely how to score an emotional direct hit. Whether that's boxing, football, charity, media or powerful people. Kenwright can turn people's anger into sympathy with one stare into the distance.

It's both funny and maddening at the same time. I think I've got more respect for him as each year passes. He's fucking amazing.

Simon Spencer
82 Posted 04/05/2018 at 22:04:06
Thought the article was really thought-provoking. The Fan in me tells me the chasing of championships, the finals, the history of the 80s. However, so many clubs have overtaken us in terms of spending power and quality of personnel what actually is our rightful place? Notwithstanding last Summer and our ageing squad our net spend over the past 20 years is embarrassing so given that in the majority of recent years we have attained a top half finish – isn't that our rightful place.

Can we expect the owners to really be able under the regulations to actually spend enough to get close to the top 4. Have we got the creativity and firepower to sustain a chase for top 4. Have we got a ground that allows us to be sustainable challenges and giving us the income to continually challenge the top four?

What I am saying the Business (or lack) of decisions and lack of financial firepower has meant our resources (player recruitment) is nowhere near what it needs to be and so until these are seriously addressed will be ever be close to where we where in terms of prestige / nostalgia.

What can be "improved" is Everton the brand (the way we play) but to be honest have any of the "candidates" suggested have a track record of success and moreover playing the way we want.
Jerome Shields
83 Posted 04/05/2018 at 22:13:54
Everton need more that aspiration, Everton need a five-year plan for the football side of the club. They don't at the moment other than to stay in the Premier League.
Ian Pilkington
84 Posted 04/05/2018 at 00:03:36
Steve@56, you are correct in stating that the decline starting during Sir Philip Carter’s tenure, but the European ban was the catalyst. Heysel was just one week after our Cup Winners Cup triumph in Rotterdam which had resulted in a mere two arrests, yet we were unfairly banned for two European Cup and two UEFA Cup campaigns and saw perhaps our best ever team dismantled.
Gerard@69, whilst I agree with most of the points in your post, the ban was definitely imposed by UEFA. The Thatcher Government supported it although it had no jurisdiction to impose one (and in the prevailing climate of football hooliganism it received all-party support), but it was the FA that unilaterally withdrew its clubs shortly before UEFA imposed what was initially an indefinite ban.
Kieran Fitzgerald
85 Posted 05/05/2018 at 06:47:05
One club's history or values means absolutely nothing to the general public unless it's winning things. A winner's persona means all.

Does Joe public give a damn about Man. City's history outside the last six or seven years? Absolutely not. To Joe Public City is a superstar glamour club. Why? Because it is winning trophies.

The same can be said for Chelsea. Before Matthew Harding turned up at Chelsea and started to make things happen, Chelsea was a club that had represented some of the worst in English football culture in the seventies and eighties. Values, what values?One right appointment in Harding, and everything started to change. Yes, it took a little bit more time at Chelsea than at City, but Chelsea have the reputation they have today because they won a load of trophies in the recent era.

Yes, I know, a sudden influx of ridiculous money from new owners helped, but City and Chelsea are now seen as big clubs. Both clubs have done what it takes in the modern era to have that winner's persona. Everton, for all its history, is nothing to Joe public. You can say the same for any number of what were once big clubs littered around the football league. Nice but nowhere.

Take a look at Arsenal. It is a club that has started to lose it's lustre to Joe public very quickly. Why? It has lost the perception of a winning club. It's decline has been slowed a little by recent F.A cup wins but it has still lost it's reputation. You get the impression that the general public has just started to feel patronisingly sorry for the club in recent years. Why has this happened? The club was too nice. The club got what it needed from Wenger in terms of success on and off the pitch but was too nice to say goodbye when it needed to.

If Everton wants to be genuinely seen as a big club again then the answer is simple. Win trophies. It doesn't matter how we do it. Fair play rules, shiny new stadium, crazy wage bill, petulant man-child players, having traditional values or the lack of, none of it matters one jot. Just win trophies.

Tony Abrahams
86 Posted 05/05/2018 at 08:02:55
Good post Kevin, some really good points, I understand your sentiments with regard to "THE SAVIOUR" but it's just the lies!

Just Imagine if he could tell the whole truth and put it down in a movie, or better still a box-set? "HOW TO BULLSHIT THE GULLIBLE, AND SAVE A FOOTBALL CLUB"" could be the title, because this fella has done a better job than most Liverpudlians, could have ever dreamt about, in lowering the expectation levels of plucky little Everton.

Jay Wood

87 Posted 05/05/2018 at 12:57:26
Take a bow Tony Marsh @ 33. That is head and shoulders - and then some! = your best ever post on TW.

I can't agree with those flagging up the Heysel disaster and subsequent ban from Europe for English clubs as a pivotal moment in Everton's history from which we have failed to recover.

As others also point out, all our historical peers were equally impacted on. Everton was the only club among them who, when the ban was lifted, was not well placed to retain and maintain our status among the elite. An ill-preparedness that has continued to this day.

That is OUR failing, not some maverick politician's.

Dave Ganley @ 52 also makes some good observations, but I must take issue with you on one point Dave.

On Martinez's time at the club you said at the end of his first 'golden season' "you could see it heading only one way towards the end of that season when Martinez's influence on a decent squad took hold."

This is an oft-repeated myth on here that it unravelled badly for Martinez in season 2013-14. It didn't. In the final 12 games we won 9 out of 12 - 27 points - with 24 goals scored and 12 conceded. That is near title-winning form

Of the 3 losses, the Palace one was a dumb one, with really poor selection by Martinez on the night. We lost at home to City which many on TW (bizarrely!) actually canvassed for to help deny our 'bours the title. Away to Southampton was a poor display.

Martinez lost it in his 2nd season when he didn't maintain the excellence of his 1st season. He made us too ponderous in possession and execution and his negligent attitude to the defensive side of the game finally caught up with him.

I am firmly in the camp that believes it is NOT a lost cause to break back into the elite. A quarter of a century of misgovernace certainly makes it more difficult, but the right appointments and the right desire, attitude and application across all aspects of the club and we most certainly CAN rub shoulders again with the leading English clubs, on MERIT, not sentiment or history.

Paul Hay
88 Posted 05/05/2018 at 15:03:49
Christine @ 21.
While I agree with many of the sentiments expressed on this topic, I whole-heartedly agree with you and feel that your views mirror mine 100%.

There was a time-long ago, when I tended to feel that perhaps criticism for BK was unfair and foolishly bought in to the kid supporter image etc.

But now? He should go. The other incompetents should leave with him. Our business model is laughable. But to stick to the theme
If he loves the club as much as he claims he does, then he should go. With him at the helm, with him in any official capacity, Everton Football Club will never aspire to anything but mediocrity.
And that really hurts.

Paul Tran
89 Posted 05/05/2018 at 15:24:34
The clue to transforming things is, sadly, across the park.

After drawing with us at Goodison, with a mediocre team, they sacked their manager and replaced him with a top-quality coach.

Doesn't take long with the right an, does it?

Ian Hollingworth
90 Posted 05/05/2018 at 21:06:09
After today we have to accept our rightful place.
Nobodies in todays football world and apparently not too many give a fuck about it.
Paul Birmingham
91 Posted 05/05/2018 at 21:12:47
Back in and Cest La Vie... In context of alll Evertonians. There is no going back and today is today and a very in my view spawny draw, Soton, on play, the better side.

Take this next game, no, and for any season. The home team bailing into free fall.

Sick to the back teeth and will Hell, and boredom, be replaced next season I am sure it won’t, unless the club, grows up.

It’s the way it is now and that creak, we’ve festered in for years, has got deeper and wider, to escape.

Still going for my solution on a Madrid win double in this years Euros & Champions League, and buy the Madrid players..! If only.

We can’t live in the past, but the future.. we don’t have any clue, an£ that’s the clubs board, fault. Please EFC, is a clue.

Chad Schofield
92 Posted 06/05/2018 at 03:18:22
Si Pulford #42,
What's was it? 92.6% of statistics are made up on the spot?
Well I think your claim that "99% of Evertonians" wanted the season over and to simply steady the ship when Sam arrived, is 100% bullshit.

Yes of course we did need stabilising, but not for the remainder of the season. We were out of the Europa League, and had some very winnable fixtures ahead.

Those who feared we were in a relegation fight 6-7 games in, yes maybe they were ready to slit their wrists... but then they'd probably had drawn up their nooses before Davies "saved the day" with his last second deflected goal against 10-man Southampton - and they're now 99.9% sure Everton are going to win the treble next season under "bfs". That'll be short lived after we've not signed 99% of the targets we're linked with though - then they'll have 99 problems, but a bunch of new players won't be one (probably).

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