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Everton confident of landing Zouma on loan

| Wednesday, 08 August 2018 135comments  |  Jump to last
Everton could add Chelsea centre-half Kurt Zouma to their squad this season, say The Mirror.

The 23-year-old spent the 2017-18 campaign at Stoke City and is unlikely to be in the reckoning for a starting role at Stamford Bridge this season.

Everton, who are still awaiting a decision from Barcelona and Yerry Mina, are in desperate need to bolster their back line before tomorrow's transfer deadline.

Whether Zouma is seen as an alternative to Mina and other reported targets like Marcos Rojo isn't clear but it's conceivable Marco Silva would like to bring in two centre-halves.

According to French reports, however, Manchester United themselves have lodged an inquiry about signing Zouma themselves.

Reader Comments (135)

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James Stewart
1 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:24:31
Finally an imposing centre back with PACE! Would take this lad over Mina or Rojo any day. Get it done Marcel!
Gavin Johnson
2 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:29:00
I'll be disappointed if we don't get the Mina deal over the line, but Zouma is better than Funes Mori and Williams so we will be stronger going into the new season. Hopefully we'll sign both of them.
Bill Gienapp
3 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:34:50
Latest round of tweets once again suggesting Mina deal is done (I'll take that with a shaker of salt, thanks)... but if we *could* get him and Zouma in before the window closes, I'd be one happy panda indeed.
Derek Knox
4 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:36:12
Getting him in even on loan, is a plus, when there is so much confusion over Mina, will he, won't he ?

Like a few TW'ers have mentioned I am not sure I want Mina here at all, if he's holding out for something, he thinks is better, then eventually does end up coming, it's like a last resort sort of move.

Is he likely to give a 100% ?

The only thing with Zouma on loan, it may be like the Lukaku situation, he played well, and we wanted to buy him, we were at Chelsea's demands. Let's hope they have learnt from that and agree a price should the move be made permanent.

Lee Paige
5 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:46:35
Don’t want this we need to buy and get our aging defence sorted out ASAP.
Andrew Keatley
6 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:55:23
Never been convinced by Zouma. He always seems terrified when put under any pressure while in possession. Plus he is over-reliant on his pace and strength getting him out of problems caused by his own lapses in concentration/inability to read the game successfully. Holgate is already a superior player.
Derek Knox
7 Posted 08/08/2018 at 01:04:35
I wonder if he is any relation to Monte, as in Montezuma's Revenge?
David Pearl
8 Posted 08/08/2018 at 01:14:11
I'm not so sure Mina was holding out for Utd so much as Barca wanted to use him as makeweight in a deal for Pogba. I know we are in for both him and Nzonzi and I'd like them both... along with Bernard and Zouma (with an option to buy, because otherwise what's the point).

And if we do then what a much better transfer window this would be!

Lewis Barclay
9 Posted 08/08/2018 at 01:14:16
Put a option to buy in the contract - happy days!
Ernie Baywood
10 Posted 08/08/2018 at 01:44:25
Good... but the ball playing defender has to be the priority doesn't it?

At a push, we already have a very expensive defender who can play the 'imposing' role.

Fran Mitchell
11 Posted 08/08/2018 at 01:51:26
Was he any good at Stoke last year? I mean, they were woeful and went down - yet had a defense of Zouma, Martins-Indi, and Butland in goal.

Tbh, I have mentioned this lads name as a potential option, but in reality, all I know of him is he was a beast in Football Manager when I last played it some years ago.

Roman Sidey
12 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:03:35
"Plus he is over-reliant on his pace and strength getting him out of problems caused by his own lapses in concentration/inability to read the game successfully."
Sounds like Jags.

Whether we're going to sign Mina or not we need more centre-halves signed before end of business tomorrow. Jags is old as fuck and been the best of a bad bunch for a long time now, and Holgate is still not as imposing as we need him to be. Keane is there abouts but is as slow as a wet week. If we go into the season with those three as our only senior halves, then we're gonna leak goals every match.

Victor Yu
13 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:05:28
On loan with an option to buy would sound better. But if we fail to get Mina I would take it as a short term fix.
Victor Yu
14 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:06:53
And yes what happened to Martins-Indi? He was supposed to be a rising star yet he is playing with Stokes still and no one seems to be interested in picking him up.
Drew O'Neall
15 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:18:24
This man jumps higher than physics should alllow.
Michael Morgan
16 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:35:31
Andrew @6,

I disagree about Holgate being better. He's 2 years younger, so I'd go as far as saying that if he keeps improving and gaining experience, that he could be as good as Zouma is now at 23, when Holagte reaches that age, but comparing them both now, Zouma is way ahead.

You only have to currently look at what they're both valued at:

Zouma £15m
Holgate £7m

Chelsea's own fans want him in their side now ahead of seasoned internationals as they think he's better than who's been playing for them. Stoke fans think that if it wasn't for him and Shaquiri, that they'd have been down alot earlier than what they were.

Zouma's got great pace, strength and movement. He's got fantastic work rate and stamina, and has excellent positioning and aerial prescence during set pieces.

Kristian Boyce
17 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:38:57
I’d be very disappointed if there isn’t a purchase option included in the deal. It basically puts us back to the same position next season if there isn’t.

I’ve just been reading some of the Chelsea fan sites about the deal and many of them are gutted about him leaving. They are completely loaded up on CB’s and with Sarri switching to a back 4, it’s inevitable that one or more are surplus to requirements.

Also, Shawcross said he’s probably the 2nd best CB he’s played with/against in the league last season after Alderweireld at Spurs.

Vijay Nair
18 Posted 08/08/2018 at 02:42:19
This lad along with Soumauro from Lille would do just fine.

Forget about Mina, who is just stuffing us around, and overpriced MU castoffs like Rojo.

Michael Morgan
19 Posted 08/08/2018 at 03:11:01
Kristian @17,

I'm totally in the buy him now camp over loaning or as you mentioned at least a buy option after loan.

I'd be very surprised if Chelsea would let him go permanently. I don't think he's in their managers plans right now, but I think they regard him as one for the future, hence the 6 year contract they gave him last season before loaning him to Stoke.

At the moment though, I'd take him on a loan if that's all Chelsea are offering and still go after one other CB on a permanent deal before window shuts.

I'd still try a little cheeky bid for him to test them, say £15-20m. Personally I'd have him over Mina, he's already Premier league ready, so would only take time to gel to our setup, wheras Mina would also have to get used to the English game as well as our system.

Darren Hind
20 Posted 08/08/2018 at 03:39:50
This is not a signing we should be looking to make. We have sorted the full-back situation and need to focus on bringing in centre-halves who can play.

Over the next couple of seasons John Stones will become the best centre-half on the planet, yet Philistines on here couldn't see it; they hounded every mistake he made as an apprentice. In the end, he couldn't get out of here quick enough.... To think some actually called for yard dogs like Williams?

I want to see players who can actually play. . . Skillfully and intelligently. The thought of spending 30m on Yerry Mina makes me want to weep. If we bring this fella in too all hope of improved style of play goes out of the window.

How can we develop proper footballers like Holgate if we only give him partners who are better players when they haven't got the ball? Isn't that what we did with Stones?

What the fuck — They'll still clap.

David Barks
21 Posted 08/08/2018 at 05:02:45
No issue whatsoever with loaning a player like him. If it works, try to buy him. If it doesn’t work, we address in the next Summer. This was never meant to be a complete reshape in one window. And if he’s a success but Chelsea decide they don’t want to sell, well we ended up getting a good season out of him and bought ourselves another year.

Personally I’d prefer Zouma to Mina. I think Holgate has a bright future with us, we just need his partner.

Mike Gaynes
22 Posted 08/08/2018 at 05:05:02
Darren, I'll give you any odds you want that John Stones never, ever gets within missile distance of becoming "the best centre half on the planet." He'll never even be the best in the Prem. Hell, Pep is speculating now about moving him to holding mid.

And if you really think the comments from the "Philistines" on TW were the reason he couldn't wait to get out of here, you have a bad case of ToffeeWeb Importance Delusion Syndrome. We just don't matter that much.

He left because he'd wanted out for over a year, because we'd been under siege by big-money offers over a year, and because £47 million said he could transfer to the title favorites and play CL footy against the best in the world. And because given the option of playing for Pep or playing for Koeman, he made the choice any rational player would.

As for a Zouma loan, I haven't seen enough of him to rate him as a player, but we sure as hell need somebody in there. And up to now I've seen no reason not to trust Brands' judgement.

David Barks
23 Posted 08/08/2018 at 05:18:09

I don’t think Darren was restricting it to ToffeeWeb. Complaints about Stones were heard often at Goodison and throughout social media, saying we couldn’t afford his mistakes and we needed an “honest old fashioned defender”.

It disgusted me the same way all the complaints about Lukaku did. People were flooding these pages and others saying Lukaku was actually holding the team back, that everyone had to play to his strengths, and if we just removed him the team would flourish. Stones oozed quality and that confident swagger that top clubs embrace, yet we seem to rush to run out of town.

I’m not saying that’s the REASON he left. But it certainly didn’t help the case to get another year out of him. And personally I have no doubt he’ll become one of the best defenders in the world. The guy is driven. Just because Pep put him in midfield during one of many meaningless preseason matches doesn’t mean Pep is trying to move him out of defense.

Sam Hoare
24 Posted 08/08/2018 at 06:32:40
I’d take Zouma in a heartbeat, we need players who can actually defend and this guy can. Having him on loan isn’t ideal but at least it gives Brands the time to find and buy whoever is going to be the long term solution that I’m pretty sure Keane isn’t.

It would be nice to have at least one ball playing CB but isn’t Holgate meant to be ‘good on the ball’ (not seen huge evidence of this so far myself)? Hopefully he might be Zouma’s primary partner this season if this move happens.

Jim Bennings
25 Posted 08/08/2018 at 06:45:13
We have one day left so we need to get our skates on.

The Mina thing is looking so complicated right now that you can’t see him coming and he’ll probably end up going to Lyon or United at the final hour.

Zouma I’ve liked for a while and it should have been done last summer, along with Shaqiri he was Stoke’s standout player throughout the 17/18 season.

John G Davies
26 Posted 08/08/2018 at 06:45:55

Irrational emotion shown by some aside. I think people, including me, were just giving their honest opinion on Stones.

Tim Locke
27 Posted 08/08/2018 at 07:09:52
A lot better than Mina deal. Mina wouldn’t be a good buy. He is like a younger version of Williams. Slow, has poor positioning often being caught the wrong side of attackers. Has the turning circle of a bus. Makes mistakes.

If you look at the Barca stats it is worrying. Barca’s defence last season was amazing. Mina played in 5 games, including an embarrassing 5-4 defeat where he was poor. When he played Barca leaked more goals, when he played over 1/4 of Barca’s goals were conceded.

I would grant you he had an ok to good World Cup. So it could be the style, the players round him etc hat make a difference. It could be regular football which would help, he is still young. But he’s not going to get quicker, £32 overpriced. £15-20 would be maybe worth a gamble.

Mike Gaynes
28 Posted 08/08/2018 at 07:24:52
David #23, Darren plainly said "Philistines here"... so he was talking about TW. I certainly don't remember hearing the fans at the games boo Stones.

And Guardiola publicly told the press Monday that he is considering playing Stones as a holding mid. He is not currently first choice ahead of Kompany and Otamendi. And so it would seem Pep doesn't consider Stones to be on the verge of entering the world's best 11.

As to Stones exuding quality and swagger, yes he often does. What he does not display is consistency. He lost form for quite a while last season – his blunders against Burnley, Bristol and the RS spoke to that – and he froze on the Mandzukic winner at the World Cup.

I think he's a good player who will get even better with time and should have a solid England career as well. But among the best on the planet? No way. Never gonna happen.

Peter Warren
29 Posted 08/08/2018 at 07:25:13
Darren - no idea what you have against Mina who 6 months ago Barcelona felt was good enough for their side although they do just punt from their own half!? As for a loan signing of a young centre half with lots of potential when we only have Jags (passed it), Keane (crap) and Holgate (not v good yet) I just don’t get it. I will actually be surprised if we pull it off but would be very happy if we signed both players. Why your philosophy is only sign better ball players at centre back than our current defenders when are current players are rubbish seems nuts.

On a separate note, nobody wanted Stones to go but Stones. I don’t see him being anywhere near in the future the best defender on the planet. You went on and on about him during the World Cup despite him being outshone by McGuire and making lots of mistakes in Sweden game and switching off against Croatia. He’s a fine footballer but people asserting they believe he will never be a top class defender like Adams, Terry and Ferdinand are not cretins. He has all the tools to be a top class defender and I really like him as a player and a person and hope he reaches his potential but I have doubts about this too.

Eddie Dunn
30 Posted 08/08/2018 at 07:34:43
Zouma looked good with Chelsea so I would be happy if we landed him. Mina looked great in the World Cup but who knows if he will prove a success week in-week out in the Premier League. However, I can see us playing both Schneiderlin and Gueye with a new CB pairing bedding in.
Andrew Ellams
31 Posted 08/08/2018 at 07:53:44
If the rumours that Holgate suffering from achilles tendonitis are true then he is going to be absent for quite a while which leaves us with Keane and Jagielka as the only senior central defenders available. We need two in not either or.
Robert Leigh
32 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:02:39
Yes please on Zouma.

(With Holgate) Gives us a potential pairing for years to come, and right now Jags could play alongside him until Mason gets fit.

As some have said we’ll still need another.

Also reading Burnley might sell Heaton, take him for the bench too.

Tony Marsh
33 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:08:49
A lot of football fans are so nieve these days when it comes to the way player transfers are conducted. I would Love Zouma to come to Everton but why all the animosity towards Mina.?? Mina is still only a kid and has to make life-changing decisions with regards to his next club.

The days of Brian Clough bullying a player to sign with a "take it or leave it" ultimatum are long gone. There are so many variables to factor in to a deal to get one done, it is not as simple as "If Mina is messing about, tell him to do one!" shouts,

These parasitic agents own the game now. Unless Mina's agent is happy with the next deal, then forget it. Forget which club is next on the list, forget language barriers, culture, country of origin, style of football, families being allowed in, food, fellow countrymen at the club etc etc — the agent must line his own pockets first.

Cut Mina some slack, guys. I mean, what type of big decisions were you making at 23 years old? Which boozer to go on Friday night? Or what colour XR3i should you buy?

If both Zouma and Mina come on board we are doing well as both are an upgrade on what we have now.

Danny Baily
34 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:14:32
A good signing. Get it done ASAP, times is running out.
Jerome Shields
35 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:17:04
We need two permanent replacement CBs and we have needed them for years. Someone on loan is just a plaster. These have been the positions that have needed sorting out since the start of the transfer window.

With a gaping hole in defence, it doesn't matter who you transfer in for other positions. The whole attitude and confidence of the team is constantly under threat with such an obvious gaping hole.

Clive Rogers
36 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:19:06
Zouma looked outstanding to me when he first came to Chelsea, but has stuttered a bit since. Was one of the better players at Stoke reportedly. Would be a good signing for me.
Chris Gould
37 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:25:58
Zouma, Mina, and Bernard make six signings if you include the young GK.
Silva asked for 6 and will have got his wish.
Brands is full of surprises, so I wouldn't be surprised if a player like Nzonzi also comes through the door.
I'm feeling confident that this business will all get done.
I don't believe the Mina hold up has been down to the player. I reckon he would have been announced as a double deal with Digne if Barcelona hadn't taken Utd's supposed interest seriously. I think they have been hoping Utd would pay more or, as has been reported, accept him as part of a deal for Pogba.
When Barcelona finally accept that Utd were using Mina in an attempt to force Levy to reduce his valuation of Alderweireld, our bid will be accepted and the deal finalised.

My concern about a loan deal is that Silva will spend so much effort developing Zouma and improving him, only to see him reap the benefits back at Chelsea. Hopefully there'll be an option to buy.

Danny Baily
38 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:28:20
Jerome 33, I fully agree. Been going mad checking these pages for news of a LB and CB coming in. One of the reasons I'm not happy with the richarlison signing, along with the price tag, is the sense that we haven't prioritised our recruitment well.
Victor Yu
39 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:38:38
Where does Connolly fit in this season?

I can't imagine him playing U23 after a solid season out on loan. I think he needs first team action in order to progress. Another loan perhaps?

Colin Glassar
40 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:39:56
I think the next 24 hrs are going to be a rollercoaster. Stay tuned folks
Robert Leigh
41 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:49:03
Victor #37

I agree with you, he's looked solid in pre-season.

Championship clubs have until the end of the month to secure loan deals though, so I'd expect him to go after the transfer window shuts for us.

I assume he is currently fifth choice at CB behind Holgate, Keane, Jagielka and Pennington (until a signing comes in), so we could be waiting until one is in before letting him go.

Chris Clark
42 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:54:43
If the signings of Mina and Bernard come off what a window we would of had. If you include Walcott and Tosun the last 6 months of business look very good. Brands has done a superb job of moving players on for good fees and there might be a few more suprises. If you look at our starting team who would of thought a few years ago the majority of the starters would of cost a similar amount as Lukaku did? Hopefully good times ahead IYKYH.
James Hughes
43 Posted 08/08/2018 at 08:59:10
So Zouma is an excellent defender is he. Remind me how many goals did Stoke concede last season. Or was he great but all the others crap.
Gary Russell
44 Posted 08/08/2018 at 09:25:12
James, that seems a rather simplistic viewpoint. Could it not be the whole team were lacking as a defensive unit, just as we were? How many goals did Pickford concede last season?
Brian Williams
45 Posted 08/08/2018 at 09:27:37
Ooh Col are we going to the fair mate? Candy floss on you?
Victor Yu
46 Posted 08/08/2018 at 09:28:59
Connolly is way better than Pennington. I still don't understand why we extend Pennington. He can barely make a Championship club.
Brent Stephens
47 Posted 08/08/2018 at 09:44:56
I'm not sure about the CBs we're being linked with. I'll just wait and watch.

And I'm not sure why anybody raised Stones' name again - he's long gone. Stones does seem to exude the air of a quality player. But as with air, too often there's little substance. He switches off more than somebody with OCD worried there'll be a fire from the electrics.

Robert Leigh
48 Posted 08/08/2018 at 10:09:20
Victor - couldn't agree more, but Pennington got some time at CB in preseason where Connolly didn't.

I'd happily keep Connolly here, but I think a loan for the season (with an option to bring him back in January) would work well for all concerned.

The same with young Joe Williams and, if we get Drinkwater or someone else, Tom Davies.

Darren Hind
49 Posted 08/08/2018 at 10:16:52

Let me make it clearer. when I say "Here". I mean this club. Evertonia.
I mean the Park End panic merchants. The Gwladys street gripers. The Main Stand moaners. The Bullens Road basher's, The County Road critics and yes the TW tripe "twat it clear" brigade.

For decades this club has prided itself on the quality of its football. We were the culture club, the School of science. We loved our players to play . . but something happened along the way.

I don't know if its the fact that many fans see top seven as the be all and end all these days. I don't know if its because the relegation battles in the 90's left scars deep enough to change the culture of the club, but things have definitely taken a turn for the worse.
People have become terrified of risk. They are mean to our kids as they try to learn their trade. Too quick to dismiss them as "not good enough". We have fans who would rather support a series of Gobshite managers serving up Zombie anti football on a weekly basis than take a chance on a youth team coach who has shown huge promise by winning our only trophy for years. .

Somebody - preferably somebody who loves the beautiful game - needs to explain to me how we can drive people like John Stones away and hail the arrival of cart horses like Ashley Williams in the space of a few weeks.
I have nothing against Mina or Zouma, both may prove to be fine stoppers. . .I just want something different from watching the shite we have become indoctrinated to.

Pep isn't the first to say Stones could play in midfield, such is his talent, people have been saying it since he was a boy. I watched him on Sunday. He was a colossus, no longer the cocky bean pole of a kid the Philistines we so quick to condemn. He was assured and confident. . . which is all the more remarkable given the very difficult operation he underwent recently

Grant Rorrison
50 Posted 08/08/2018 at 10:43:44
John Stones is completely over-rated. He didn't exude much confidence when he cried off during the Mersey derby. He's all style and no substance and if it's true that Pep wants to use him as a defensive midfielder then he's clearly got issues with him as a defender too.

How is pissing around unnecessarily with the ball and giving away cheap goals a positive thing? Stones only excelled at turning defence into a heart attack while he was here.

Tony Everan
51 Posted 08/08/2018 at 10:46:02
Zouma on loan with an option to buy is good business.

Mina won’t commit to us now, makes me think he won’t fully commit to us if we do end up signing him.

When things get tough he will start thinking oh no , I made a mistake, I want out . Rather than knuckling down, rolling up the sleeves and fighting harder.

Time to completely pull the plug on Mina and get Zouma in immediately with an option to buy.

Steve Ferns
52 Posted 08/08/2018 at 10:59:37
Good post Darren.

I think there's a huge generational gap though. For myself, I grew up going to the game in the glory days. My first season I ended up going to see us beat Watford in the cup aged 5. Fast forward 5 years and I had been to Wembley nine times, and you all know what I had seen us win. But in 1989 I was only 10. too young to understand and appreciate it all.

Instead, my Everton is one of a club in decline. Getting mercilessly picked on as one of the few Evertonians in my class. And watching the number of Evertonians in my school dwindle as the number of Man Utd fans rose.

There's a different attitude between the older Evertonians who watched the glory days of Catterick and Kendall, and then the Evertonians who watched the glory days of the 80s, and even between my generation who watched the decline with the next generation who grew up in the post relegation scrap era under Moyes and the last few guys.

It's surely harder for the young lads to have that Nil Satis Nisi Optimum attitude. How can only the best be good enough? The best they saw is either 4th under Moyes (playing dreadful football) or 5th under Martinez.

I think we have different standards and different expectations because of that generational gap.

Bryan Houghton
53 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:10:03
Everything that Darren & Steve have just said.

And Grant-re Stones I can only completely disagree. But its all about opinions-even the ones that drive me nuts !

Ernie Baywood
54 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:11:38
With the sort of money being talked about for Maguire, what's Stones worth now? 100M? More?

Everyone is looking for a ball playing defender. He's the best
English centre back around and he's still young. He's quick enough, he's tall enough, he's now strong enough.

He'll make mistakes, but he'll also be a key part of teams that win everything. He'll probably do that for another decade.

While we'll have a series of lumps belting it into the stands to rapturous applause.

Dermot Byrne
55 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:15:46
Steve, I think some of us are just so hopeful with each chance of improvement. But we all also think current and recent play is awful.

For me, I seize on each chance of improvement. Then I am regularly disappointed and unable to refer back to my previous postings warning of need for caution. That is my nature and, apart from in the Blue world, such optimism has served me well strangely.

I can doubt or question every move we make, every appointment, every purchase but it gets me absolutely nowhere.

Just enables me to say "told ya so" but there are plenty to do that and to that with justification. Just about the nature of individuals. None better or worse.

I am 58 so have seen glory and bad times. Mostly mediocre times.

But all through every pre-season I am excited and my reaction to moves we make is always ruled by heart rather than head.

As have said before, we all share same dream.

PS Best wishes in your difficult time.

Michael Lynch
56 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:18:23
John Stones was the right player at the wrong time for us. He's with a team of ball-players from 1 to 11 now, he's rarely asked to defend backs-against-the-wall and he knows that if he does make an error, then Aguero or De Bruyne or Sterling or another £100m attacker will score at the other end to save his blushes.

When he played for us, his decision making was at times poor. Even reckless. There's nothing clever about giving away goals.

I'm lucky, I was young but I saw the Catterick years. And I was old enough to enjoy the Kendall years. But I don't have some rose tinted view of those days - both sides had players who knew when to give it Row Z if needs be.

It's not an either/or situation. You can have a wonderful ball-playing side but still occasionally boot the ball out of play.

Rob Dolby
57 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:27:22
I would take Zouma and enquire about David Luis. I think Luis could be a great holding mid, he has fantastic distribution and will only get more splinters on his arse this season at Chelsea.
Michael Lynch
58 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:33:54
Mina, Bernard, Zouma all signed up by this time tomorrow, and I think we'd be starting with a decent squad. I just hope Pickford stays fit though, because Stek doesn't fill me with confidence as a back up. Other than that, we'd have two relatively decent options in pretty much every position.
Jack Convery
59 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:36:05
Pickford was relegated with Sunderland - I wonder why we bought him. After all he must have been crap.

Chelsea fans love Zouma - so lets be having it.

Darren Hind
60 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:57:19

I think if every defender in the world were put up for sale right now. Stones would already be right up there with the most coveted.
When Mourinho and Guardiola were offering what seemed like ridiculous fortunes for his signature, they knew they were investing for the future . .they could see the mistakes of youth, They're not blind, but they could also recognize the brilliance . .that's why they are two of the most successful managers ever.
John Stones is now out of our financial league, So we can forget all about him.

The point I was making is that we have too many experts who are happy to applaud agricultural defending by journeymen who will never improve. And its not just in defense they applaud mediocrity. Those knocking DCL, Davies, Kenny and Holgate within earshot have no clue of the damage they do to a kids development. They will tolerate and applaud others brought in, simply because they like that they have exotic sounding foreign names. . . Doesn't seem to matter how shite they are.

Steve F

Doesn't matter how old you are mate. I know many people of your age with a decent understanding of the game (you for a start). Its not the young ones I worry about, its the poor judges, the philistines and the bleedin idiots who concern me

Ian Jones
61 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:58:35
Michael @ 54, agree with your comments, especially about Stones being the right player at the wrong time..

We have probably had loads of players over the years who fit that description.

Hooefully, we can reverse the trend soon.

Derek Knox
62 Posted 08/08/2018 at 11:59:00
Jack, agree regarding some opinions of a player from a relegated Club, the Club didn't get relegated by virtue of one man alone.

Regarding Zouma, in his first season at Chelsea, I believe he was voted player of the season. That can only have been due to consistent performances.

Michael Lynch, I am totally in agreement with you regarding Stek, and to think they extended his contract, knowing they were bringing Jaoao Virginia in (presumably) beggars belief.

If we are to have a decent Cup run this season, it fills me with dread should they rest Pickford (as is what usually happens) and play him instead, his positioning is like a rookie and suicidal.

Mike Doyle
63 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:21:35
Shaquiri was also relegated with Stoke. Didn't deter Klopp.
Steve Ferns
64 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:31:54
Darren I agree wholeheartedly about the kids. One thing one of our former manager's said, and I think it was Moyes, was that you can coach most decent young kids to be a very good defender, it's the attacking qualities, touch, control, dribbling, that's harder to teach.

So someone like Feeney is the case in point. He is tall despite his age. He will have the build and physique required to play centre back. He also has the basic skills. So, there's our centre half for the next 10-15 years. All that stands between him and fulfilling that destiny is experience. So he needs that pathway to the side, so he can learn and develop his game. I don't agree with spending big money on central defenders, not unless they have exceptional skills like John Stones, or they are 6'5" like Van Dyk and have his exceptional skillset.

I'm not saying we shouldn't buy a centre half for the new season, we surely should. A 6'5" monster like Mina would be worth it, as again he has skills that you just can't develop (like Van Dyk finding someone so big that his nimble enough, quick enough, and reads the game well is very difficult). Signing someone like Gibson is a big no-no for me. Pennington would be as good as Gibson if he had had the same opportunities and got the same experience as Gibson. Holgate and Feeney need a clear pathway to the first team and opportunities to play.

That goes for Davies. I can't believe some of the shit that has been written about Davies over the last 6-9 months. Rewind 12 months ago and everyone seemed to hate Barkley and Davies was held up as a kind of anti-Barkley. Now, Davies is the target of the boo boys. This is a lad who was up for a prestigious award as the best player under 21 in Europe. He was on a shortlist of 50 or so. This kid can do the lot. He needs time to develop and get opportunities and he needs to do so without worrying about the boo boys. If he was breaking into the side now, and he's still only 20, we'd all be raving about him. It's because of how big an impact that he made that some seem to think he has to go on some stellar development path and be captain of England next year or so, and as he is not living up to those expectations, then he's suddenly not good enough. He is good enough. He will be a fantastic player. Just let him have time.

My father knew a player when he saw him. He didn't often come out with superlatives about the young lads. He loved Rooney. Even when he joined Man Utd he loved to watch him. He also rated Barkley, and he rated Tom Davies even higher. He thought he was going to be a stellar player and that we would struggle to keep hold of him. The lad is only 20. His form will be erratic. He has the skillset, he needs to rebuild his confidence, and YOU can help him do that by getting behind him and supporting him. He's one of us and we should never get on his back. You should never get on the back of any player who tries hard, all we can ask is their best and if that's not good enough, then the manager should choose not to play them. Davies is good enough, but he will struggle to break into the first XI once Bernard arrives, but that's ok. Silva will ensure that he is close to the team. Why? because he is young, he is cheap, and he can get better.

Tom Bowers
65 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:35:34
The existing options at central defence for Everton are not confidence inspiring.
Keane has not yet convinced me and Holgate is not strong enough.

Jags has aged and Pennington didn't impress me on loan last season.

If that position (s) isn't properly sorted than it's going to be another also ran season.

Michael Lynch
66 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:43:29
I do agree that it doesn't help getting onto players backs. I don't think Everton fans are the only ones guilty of that - it's a general trend in the game. Possibly just a symptom of the way football has developed since Sky invented it. The crowds are bigger, and perhaps more impatient because some of the new fans have been led to expect instant and consistent brilliance from watching teams like Citteh and, ok I'll say it, The Shite in recent times on TV. It kind of reminds me a bit of cricket - the 20 over game is incredibly popular but it means most fans can't watch Test cricket without getting bored shitless, they simply don't understand it.

The response to an error should be "never mind lad, give it another go". And I think with most of it us, it still is. As long as the player appears to be trying and learning.

With regards to Tom Davies in particular, he has been disappointing recently in my opinion - his progress seems to have stalled. Barkley was the same, and it seems he hasn't improved at Chelsea. Possibly simply a bad move for him - he should have gone to a mid-table club which would play him every week, then he might have kicked on. Who knows. I must admit, I don't think Davies is going to be a "stellar" footballer, I just don't think he has those sorts of talents. He could become a solid player for us, or for another PL team, and possibly a future captain because even at his tender age he's not shy of taking on responsibility.

The key is that we need to be developing the likes of Barkley and Davies, for the simple reason that we save ourselves the pain (financial and mental) of these transfer windows if we don't have to scrabble about desperately trying to fill gaps in the squad, throwing money at "possibles" as the clock ticks down.

James Marshall
67 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:45:03
It doesn't matter what Tom does, not with that barnet of his *swoon*
Tony J Williams
68 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:45:13
"The point I was making is that we have too many experts who are happy to applaud agricultural defending by journeymen who will never improve"

Fuckin' eh??

Who's that then?

We, as a crowd, applaud good defending, ie "good" defending, it doesn't matter who does it, if it's "good"

Same as we, as a crowd, groan when someone pisses about with the ball cutting back inside for no reason and underselling a back pass", again, no matter who does it.

Granted you have the "never happy" punters who would piss and moan if we won 7-0 because their strikers had 2 shots on target, but if there were grunts and groans aimed at Stones by the majority of the crowd, it would have been for a good reason.

Furthermore the only reason Stones left was because he saw pound signs and wanted to play against the elite, which every players wants.

It had absolutely nothing to do with reactions from the crowd when he pissed about with the ball on occasion.

James Hughes
69 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:45:58
Derek #60 then why is Zouma still avilable? why was he loaned out to Stoke last season. Fair enough he is only one player and the manager was Sparky who has a poor managerial track record. Just ask Neil Warnock :)

On the Mina thread, Jason Broome posted some impressive stats for Mina. Chelsea still sent him away and will allegedly loan him to us this season, why?

One other scenario is that Zouma has an amazing season and is our player of the year. Have we improved a Chelsea asset whose value has shot up or will we have agreed a price now. I am probably totally wrong (as usual) but didn't Lukaku's price increase after a good season with us.

Terry Farrell
70 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:50:20
If you get time watch efc 3 Chelsea 1 again. Stones performance was world class and electric. Costa was destroyed by his talent that day. And I share Darrens disdain for speccies who verbally get on players backs, especially young players.
Ernie Baywood
71 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:54:01
Tony 66 - yes he made mistakes. He also gave the ball to a blue shirt plenty of times. And he was still learning.

The defenders we have bought and are now looking at won't lose it in dangerous positions very often, but they'll give it back to the opposition far more than Stones did.

To me, it always came down to whether we wanted the ball or whether we were just happy for it not to be in our box for a bit. The latter seems a very limited ambition.

Ernie Baywood
72 Posted 08/08/2018 at 12:57:50
Darren 58 - Completely agree.

Just watch the criticism some of our young players with potential get while calling for someone like Besic to get a game.

Chris Watts
73 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:02:11
Lookman available for £30m according to the echo. I hope we’re doing the right thing here her looks so exciting.

Maybe a swap for Werner

Don Alexander
74 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:02:51
Steve and Darren (various), I agree that our younger lads don't deserve to be got at for mistakes or loss of form. That said, to see the likes of Barkley bottling challenges or simply skiving the hard yards, to the team's cost, does my head in. These lads need to realise they've chosen a hard road as a living and that needs a hard attitude to succeed, 24/7.

To me the softness we see in a number of them, oft commented on by TW'ers, seems embedded in FF and that won't be the fault of the young 'uns. I just hope that with several of the "major" players having recently been told to train on their own the penny has well and truly dropped throughout the entire place that "nicely-nicely" no longer cuts it.

Sam Hoare
75 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:28:56
I'm a huge fan of young players and giving them a chance but I disagree with Steve F, some of them are simply over-hyped and will never be as good as they are made out to be; however much game time they get. Some will simply not deliver on their potential, for a wide variety of reasons.

I really like Tom Davies but i'm beginning to worry. He's been given a fair amount of game time over the last few years but he does not seem to have progressed. Steve @62, you say that he will be a fantastic player and I really hope you're right but surely we can't be sure. Ocassionally there is a truly special talent like a certain Mr. Rooney but I don't class Davies in that category. You say 'the kid can do the lot' but can he? He's not quick, not that strong. He doesn't make alot of key passes or interceptions or tackles. He's got great energy and passion which I love but currently the end product is mediocre and how can we (or Marco Silva) be sure that will change unless he shows us?

I'm not saying that we should knock the kids, obviously that helps no-one, but equally they have to be able to serve the team, they have to show that they are using the experiences given to them to improve; not necessarily game by game but over the course of a season or two. That did not seem to be the case with Barkley (though he was still one our best players) and i'm concerned that it does not seem to be the case with Davies so far. I hope that him and Dowell and DCL and Kenny etc will get opportunities this season and will show they are capable of stepping up but 'potential' in itself means very little unless it begins to be realised.

Sam Hoare
76 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:33:54
In other news it seems Leicester are about to do what he haven't yet and sign a CB. I think Soyuncu could be a pretty decent player, only 22 and pretty good on the ball. Not the strongest but certainly more of a ball playing CB like Mr. Hind is calling out for. Going for £20m, I wonder if we were looking at him? Think Silva wants a real beast in the centre.
Steve Ferns
77 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:35:53
Let's see how the season pans out Sam. Let's see how Silva can work with him. I'm sure we will both hope I'm right about Davies. And yes, I do understand your worries, but I put them down to Koeman and Allardyce, their management of him, their use of him, and ultimately a loss of confidence. I believe he will improve dramatically under Silva. We will have to wait and see.
Sam Hoare
78 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:36:34
Fingers crossed, Steve.
Andrew Keatley
79 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:41:45
Last season we were consistently awful. It felt like there was something pretty toxic around the squad. Pretty much every one of our players struggled to show any meaningful sign of form or improvement, and it seemed like any positive notion of teamwork or camaraderie had atrophied.

For me, our young players get a pass. I don't think Davies, Lookman, Calvert-Lewin, Holgate, or Kenny (or any others) carry any of the can for last season. The culture under Koeman/Unsworth/Allardyce was all over the place, and our senior players showed very little ability to rise above it all and give the club some on-pitch, in-game security by leading from the front. Instead they hid; Morgan Schneiderlin being the best (worst) example. The young players were on a hiding to nothing.

And on the side-pot debate about John Stones; after a decent World Cup he's certainly in a ten-strong group of the best centre-halves in the world already. I expect him to be in that group for the next ten years; I don't think there is a chairman in the world who wouldn't be interested in him playing for their club.

As for Zouma... I'm on the fence. Great pace, great strength, but he's a ball-watcher extraordinaire - and players will run in behind him at will.

Andy Meighan
80 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:57:13

People are entitled to their opinion regarding Stones. Yes, he might look cultured at times but by god has that lad got a mistake in him. As someone earlier pointed out, what was he doing when Manduzik scored the winner in the semi-final? He'd switched off.

I can remember Labone and Mountfield from our title-winning days may not have been as classy as Stones but they could both defend and defend well and Degsy wasn't bad at the other end of the park.

I'll tell you this: Labby or Degsy wouldn't have cried off in a derby at the hellhole with stomach cramps either because they knew what the consequences would have been from the rest of the players.

He's another like Lukaku – started believing their own press and the pair of them, in my opinion, are vastly overrated He's gone and good riddance We are bigger than one man. Always will be.

Ajay Gopal
81 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:57:38
Sky reporting that Connolly will sign for Wigan on a season long loan.
Paul Bernard
82 Posted 08/08/2018 at 13:59:31
Zouma at Etienne was looking to be the equivalent of another young French talent - Varane. Both had very similar attributes, zouma's injury stalled him and Varane has gone onto live up to the hype.

Zouma on loan would be a nice addition alongside Mina. There seems to be a lot of towering athletic centre halfs in France and Germany, no more wasting time on Mina If its not done by tea time.

I am so desperate not only for a Distin or Lescott, but a partnership of Lescott/Distin and Jags. We haven't replaced Distin or Pienaar, now with richarlison, hopefully the distin replacement is soon to arrive.

Kase Chow
83 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:00:50
Why is everyone rewriting history about John Stones??

The guy had a mistake in him every game. Every game.

And I don’t see that he’s much better now why did we go out of the World Cup? Because John Stones fell asleep again and didn’t track his man. Simple knock down header and a tap in

Thanks Stonesy

We need defenders who can defend. First and foremost

Paul Kossoff
84 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:02:43
Mina could still go to Manchester United. That's according to transfer expert Duncan Castles, who understands Everton have reached an agreement on a fee with Barcelona.

The 23-year-old World Cup star has also agreed personal terms on a contract but he is yet to put pen to paper.

Castles understands Everton are concerned that Manchester United or Lyon could still swoop to poach the player from under their nose.

“Everton, I'm told, have agreed a fee with Barcelona,” Castles told the Transfer Window podcast.

“And they've also agreed salary terms with Mina - but they don't have the signature on the contract.

“From what I hearing from the Everton end, they are concerned they won't get the player in the end because of Manchester United's interest, because of Lyon's interest.

“It seems Mina may prefer to go to Lyon over Everton and would definitely prefer to go to Manchester United over Everton.”

Tony Williams
85 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:02:56
What's wrong with Lascelles?
Ian Bennett
86 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:11:28
Stones and Lukuku are class.

The fact that we couldn't keep either, and squandered their transfer fees reflect the work ahead to take our once mighty club back into competiting rather than making up the numbers.

The task is huge.

Dale Rose
87 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:19:25
Take this guy in a heart beat. Mina is just looking for the best offer. Latest rumour is that the red shite are after him. They deserve each other.
Jim Harrison
88 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:20:01
Tony 81

Is he actually available?

Jay Harris
89 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:21:35
John Stones has 2 main strengths confidence and passing.

For a CB his heading is not that strong and he consistently has a mistake in him.

World class - never.

Kompany is nearing Jags status and is still keeping him out of the side.

John Terry was a much better CB even in the twilight of his career.

And for the record he never ever got flack from the crowd until he was pushing like crazy for a move.

Jim Harrison
90 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:24:38
Ian 82

We lost both to vastly wealthier clubs in a better position who bid decent money. At the time Stones went it was a big fee, not now maybe but at the time it was a fair amount for a player who didn’t play their whole season. Lukaku probably went a bit under market rate, but again transfer rates wentvsilly after.

Had they gone to spurs or Villarreal I would say why, but I can understand why they left for the clubs they went to

James Stewart
91 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:30:16
@73 Inclined to agree on Tom Davies. I hope he proves me wrong but I just don't see what he offers to the side at present. I find it curious the amount of rope he gets from fellow blues. If it were Barkley misplacing all the passes Davies does Goodison would be a bear pit.

Maybe there is a player there, after all who can forget the Messi esque goal against City, but that was some time ago now and he's done nothing since.

Denis Richardson
92 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:30:58
Darren 20, I quote 'Over the next couple of seasons John Stones will become the best centre half on the planet'.

Please, please don't post comments like that, I beg. I almost choked on my lunch time muffin laughing after reading that!


My abiding memory of Stones is cowardly ducking out of that cup game at half time forcing Martinez to make an excuse of having the shits, which everyone knew was bollocks. He's certainly got one world title he can lay claim to, the most overrated CB on the planet! £47m, ta very much, please come again.

Andrew Keatley
93 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:33:15
Kase Chow (80) - I don't think anyone has claimed John Stones did not make mistakes in an Everton shirt - or a Man City or England one either; it's one of the inevitable pitfalls when risks are taken. And when Stones famously gestured for the Goodison crowd to calm down it was a pretty clear sign that his brand of football was going to find a more forgiving home elsewhere. Basically, I'm with Guardiola - I like defenders who are able to pass the ball quickly and accurately to the feet of midfielders in space, and Stones is possibly the best in the game at this.

For the record, that decisive goal in the World Cup semi was not actually John Stones' fault. It was Harry Maguire who was marking Mandzukic. Walker had half-cleared the ball (up into the air) before Perisic won his header against an exhausted Trippier - and Mandzukic ran off Maguire, down the side of Stones, and the slow-off-his-line Pickford was unable to do enough to stop the shot. I know the pundits all blamed Stones, but unfairly (I believe).

Steve Ferns
94 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:40:50
James, it wasn't luck. Davies was singled out since the age of 15. He was training with the full England side at around that age, and all the players were really impressed with him.

What does he offer?
Speed - some say he's slow, he's quick for a box-to-box player, but not quick compared to a winger.
Stamina - dunno if you check the stats but he's often run the furthest in every game, he has a great engine.
Tackling - he's just as good as Gueye at tackling.
Intercepting - he's far short of Gueye, but he's still learning to read the game, but with his speed and anticipation there are signs this will be a real strength of his game
Passing - he lacks accuracy over longer distances, but he hits good short and medium passes and they are always forwards, no side passing with Tom. Because he takes chances, a lot don't come off, but he does make things happen, he will get better at this.
Dribbling - he's quick with the ball and can beat a man - Man City goal might be his finest hour but he does have these skills in his locker
Determination - he lacked strength, but he's put a bit of muscle on (someone said he looked fat, far from it, it's muscle) and hopefully this will help him compete with players much older than him
Energy - Davies never stops running, he doesn't get his head down, he keeps going, and so he can raise the tempo, particularly with his forward passing
Plays best on the front foot - maybe he struggled so much because his last two managers don't play on the front foot, the latter was the complete opposite. Silva is very much a front foot manager and Davies should thrive under him.

Sure he has flaws, but most of them are down to age. He will only get better. If he can begin to really read the game then he can dominate the midfield and become the midfield general we need.

I really, really love the kid. I just hope he's given the chance, gets the luck with injuries and develops like I expect.

Ian Bennett
95 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:43:17
Jim 82 - agreed mate, but we have still strengthened rivals and weakened our own squad.

I understand their reasons for going, but we need huge progression to give that ilk a reason to stay financially and professionally.

Mike Gaynes
96 Posted 08/08/2018 at 14:51:10
Darren #47, thanks for clearing up my mis-impression.

I've spend only five days of my life in Liverpool, so I can't comment on the "Stones out" sentiment in the stands and the pubs. I can only say that most of the folks on TW who wanted him gone were simply pissed off that he'd handed in a transfer request at age 21, a year after signing a six-year contract, and so obviously wanted to leave. Sure, there were a few idiots who thought he'd never be any good, but there's no reason to rail about them two years on.

Me, I just thought that £47.5 million was a hell of a good deal, that if City wanted to make him the second-most expensive CB in the history of the game, we had done great business. (That Koeman/Walsh made such poor use of the money is a separate story.)

I still think he's a very good player with an excellent career ahead of him. I also still think potential "best on the planet" is a wild overstatement. He will never be Pique or Koulibaly. I don't think he'll even be Alderweireld. Among the top younger CBs, Marquinhos and Davinson Sanchez and Rüdiger are all significantly superior to Stones in my opinion.

Mike Gaynes
97 Posted 08/08/2018 at 15:07:55
Steve #94, I'd agree with most of that, although your view is a tad rosy in my opinion.

Yes on speed, stamina, determination, energy and passing. Emphatic no on tackling as well as Gueye, at least not yet -- he has the commitment but not the anticipation or the technique, thus all the silly fouls. And he's definitely not a good dribbler -- drives hard but lacks the in-close touch skills, so he always seems to lose the ball at the end.

Like you, I think there's a good chance Silva turns him into a fine player, but it's hard to see him as a starter right now. I believe he will always be in a supporting role, never a midfield general.

Michael Lynch
98 Posted 08/08/2018 at 15:09:27

Steve Ferns
99 Posted 08/08/2018 at 15:13:51
It's always going to be a tad rosy Mike, I'm a fan of his. I always look at the Liverpool born players through rose tinted specs, I'll be the first to admit that.

Tom Davies has always been a decent tackler though. That was his main strength. He played in the Gueye role alongside Liam Walsh who has the more cultured passer of the two. Davies won so many plaudits for his ability to not only win the ball, but to immediately drive forwards with it and make the pass.

He lacks a bit of strength, but having only recently turned 20, and playing in the centre of midfield, where the players tend to be older, stronger, and heavier, then of course he's going to be a bit lightweight and find it harder to tackle.

Jim Hardin
100 Posted 08/08/2018 at 15:20:26

I am one of the Philistines apparantly who citicized Stones. You may recall I indicated that he ball watches too much, loses contact with his co-defenders, is soft on defending on balls in the air as he doesn't move into the challenge, and worse, appears to duck contact. I still see all of those weaknesses in him.

You may also recall that I said he would be, or should be, tried at the defensive midfield position due to his obvious ball skills and ability to pass.

I stand by my words then and now. A great center-half he will never be. Putting him in amonst world class defenders masks his weaknesses but doesn't make him a better player. Putting him in with Maguire and Walker only highlighted the difference between Stones and a true world class center-half. His best plays were those that demonstrated the skills needed for a defensive mid, challenges to balls on the ground, sliding tackles, intercepting passes, and more than decent foot skills.

Tony Everan
101 Posted 08/08/2018 at 15:43:27
With regards Davies, for me he is still firmly in the potential stage. As well as his listed attributes he needs to mature mentally and be able to think fast and clearly under great pressure.

I haven’t give up on him at all, time is on his side. With hard work and commitment he can still make it to the top. Competition for places this season will make it tougher to get starts . It’s up to him to take the opportunities that present themselves and make himself an integral part of the first team on merit.

Robert Leigh
102 Posted 08/08/2018 at 16:07:13
To think our matchday squad could be:

Coleman - Mina - Zouma - Baines/Digne
Sigurdsson - Bernard
Walcott - Tosun - Richarlison

Stek, Holgate, Baines/Digne, Schneiderlain, Lookman, Niasse, DCL

That would be an AMAZING window.

Robert Leigh
103 Posted 08/08/2018 at 16:53:32
Also being linked with Andre Gomes, the Portugese central midfielder.

Not seen much of him, but I assume the type we want/need?

Darren Hind
104 Posted 08/08/2018 at 19:17:39

Its not about John Stones, He is just a perfect example of the point I was making. Evertonians were once an extremely knowledgeable crowd, but sometimes I feel I have turned up at the Britania stadium when I hear some the comments. "stop fucken about Lad. get it up the park".

Stones had his run-in with the Park end panic merchants long before he handed in a transfer request. He had a legion of admirers but there is a section of the Goodison crowd who wouldn't have his risk taking. These people will cheer Niasse running through a brick wall chasing dumb arsed lost cause, but they will slaughter DCL for not being able to give a top class performance when he has been stuck out on the wing

The exaggerated applause for sweat and perceived effort has to a large degree replaced the appreciation of kill and intelligence. Our youngsters are treated in a brutal manner. The zombie football which has so plagued this club for so long is merely a reflection of the ignorance in the stands. . ."Getfuckinridofitlad"

No wonder we cant attract managers who will send our team out to play with fire passion and skill. Imagine Jose or Pep reading the comments on this thread alone ? I wonder which comment they would find funniest ?

This club is at a crossroads; Do we want to continue to be Everton the greyest club in the premiership. ? A club who thinks finishing seventh will compensate for football so ugly it should come with an X certificate ? A club with fans hold no truck with risk taking little brats. . .A club whose fans think Martinez's brainless passion obsession was "entertaining" A club whose fans roar the approval at the muttering of a Neanderthal like Koeman when he "tells it like it is". . A club who fans panic and call for a man whose crimes against football had already been abhorred and rejected by fans of clubs who have no right to expect as much as us ?

This is one of the biggest seasons in our history as far as I'm concerned. We simply cant continue like we have been for the past few seasons, we cant allow Goodison to remain a soulless miserable shadow of its former self. we cant continue blame other people because we are always last on MOTD. We cant keep overpaying for players who have no more skill than half the people in the crowd.

I'm on my lassies here. I am absolutely desperate for this new management team to breath some life into the dying soul of EFC. I'm desperate to see an end to extraordinary prices being paid by clueless twats for exceptionally ordinary players.

Ben Challenor
105 Posted 08/08/2018 at 20:27:51
From what I saw of Zouma last season at Stoke I think he'd be a great signing. Pace, power and young.
Tony Twist
106 Posted 08/08/2018 at 20:36:30
We need all the defenders we can get for Saturday's game because Wolves have just bought Traore who is going to tear us a new one. Worst possible signing, loads of pace, tricky and bound to play a blinder on his debut against an Everton side that keeps on losing. On the prayer mats everyone for a Marco miracle!
Grant Rorrison
107 Posted 08/08/2018 at 20:45:16
United want Zouma now.
Derek Knox
108 Posted 08/08/2018 at 21:23:41
Grant @107, yes I have seen that, would be one in the eye, for Manure and Mourinho, if he was to choose us.

I do think though, the modern players (well, most of them) realise that signing for the likes of Manure and especially Chelsea, that they can spend most of their time on the bench or in the reserves.

Hopefully Zouma realises that more than most, he went from Player of the Season, 2014-15, to reserves, to loan at Stoke.

Joe McMahon
109 Posted 08/08/2018 at 21:40:33
Looking like United. Bollox, I rate this guy.
Jay Harris
110 Posted 08/08/2018 at 21:43:47
I don't think it will be Zouma's decision.

He is on a 6 year conttact at Chelsea and Utd apparently want a permanent deal but we want a loan deal which may suit Chelsea more(I hope).

Andrew Ellams
111 Posted 08/08/2018 at 21:50:45
Utd seem to playing games with Spurs and Leicester by throwing other CB names into the mix every few daya. They'll get either Maguire or Alderweireld tomorrow of not both
Ed Prytherch
112 Posted 08/08/2018 at 22:06:44
I can't see Chelsea loaning Zuma or anyone else to a top 5 team.
Andy Crooks
113 Posted 08/08/2018 at 22:27:29
Darren, I absolutely endorse your comments on John Stones. He is a superb player and, yes, I agree, he will be world class.
Eric Paul
114 Posted 08/08/2018 at 22:46:14

Jose is anti-football and Pep doesn't send Stones out to do anything... in fact, he doesn't send him out!

Davie Turner
115 Posted 08/08/2018 at 22:49:58
Just sign a centre half who is better than what we have, if possible sign two. They need to be better than Jags who is past his prime so is it really that hard.
Grant Rorrison
116 Posted 08/08/2018 at 23:09:54
United have now denied being after him. Hopefully get him in on loan before 5pm tomorrow.
Fran Mitchell
117 Posted 08/08/2018 at 23:26:06
On the Davies debate that entered the thread, I lean towards Steve Ferns optimistic view.

The lad had a really poor second half to last season, but well, so did everyone. His passing was erratic and the games passed him by, but he also had no help from his experienced partners in Schneiderlin and Rooney. Also Allardyce is not one to hone a young lad's technical skills. It was his second season, and like many before him, he had a second season 'crash'.

But there is a qualiyy player there. Agression, Drive, forward-thinking are what sums him up, he could be a real 'Demeble-style' midfielder if he develops his distribution and first-touch. Davies and Bernard with a defensive midfielder could be exciting.

Davies should and will start the season as a sub, but hope and think he can really push Sigurdsson for a first team place.

Sam Hoare
118 Posted 08/08/2018 at 23:41:49
Fran, I agree with a lot of what you write but cannot see Davies as a Dembele type, he doesn’t possess the raw pace and power and I’m not sure he ever will.

I’m genuinely not sure what his greatest assets are. He’s an all rounded player I guess with great energy. His vision is good I think and perhaps his passing could be great. I reckon at best he’s a Jordan Henderson type, which (unfortunately) I mean as a compliment.

Chris Gould
119 Posted 08/08/2018 at 00:15:20
Davies doesn't possess any stand-out qualities. He is slow, he doesn't tackle well, he cannot pass (short or long), he doesn't often beat a man, he rarely scores or assists, he isn't much of a physical presence and isn't good in the air.

In his plus column: he has cool hair and wears his socks low. He tries hard.

He has plenty of time to develop. I just think it should be elsewhere, preferably in the Championship.

I am fully supportive of the youngsters but won't kid myself into believing that they're better than they actually are simply because they're local lads. Davies is not yet good enough and a loan would do him good.

We can't afford to carry anyone in the hope they will one day be good enough. Top 6 teams don't do that. We need to loan the youngsters until they are physically and mentally ready. Most of them will never be good enough. I only believe that Holgate will make it with us out of the current batch.

I don't think Davies will get so much game time this season. Some kids are great in the youth leagues and look destined for stardom, but it doesn't always transfer to senior football.

Darren Hind
120 Posted 09/08/2018 at 05:26:22
Indeed Andy

For me he was the best defender in the world cup. His dominance of Lukaku was so total there had to be surgery involved to remove him from his arse pocket.

I look at comments claiming he had world class players around him and wonder what some people were watching. That's like coming out of a concert and saying the orchestra made the guy with the stick look good.

Dominic Tonge
121 Posted 09/08/2018 at 06:10:25
Zouma would be a decent signing. Not a brilliant one, however if you look at the fact we’ve loaned Williams to Stoke, and could get Zouma in on loan, I think we come out of that in a better position than we were in with Williams in the squad .

Regards Stones, he’s a good player . He is not a great defender. He is technically gifted, and he is a good footballer, can pass, and bring a ball out of defence, but the actual nuts and bolts parts of his defensive duties such as tackling, physicality, judgement of danger, blocking shots, reacting quickly and sometimes just throwing himself in the way of stuff, those are the parts he needs to work on, and gain consistency with. The lad can play, no doubt . But think back to the game vs Spurs, double cruyff turn in your own box and then calm down gestures to the crowd, nah mate the Barnsley Beckenbaur needed then and still needs now to learn when to and when not to be showboating . Basics first and build on that . Having said that, there was no need for the vitriol he received, which at one point culminated in his being given dogs abuse in a motorway service station, until he was led away in tears. He didn’t deserve it, cruyff turns or not. I’d still have him back though . If he promised to take a few Imodium before a game.

Mike Gaynes
122 Posted 09/08/2018 at 06:26:25
Darren, when you say he was the best defender in the World Cup, I too wonder what some people were watching.

I would say he was certainly the best defender not named Granqvist, Gimenez, Varane, Alderweireld, Godin, Hernandez, Meunier, Fernandes... or Yerry Mina.

John G Davies
123 Posted 09/08/2018 at 06:46:15
Stones the best defender at the World Cup?
He wasn't even the best defender in the England team.
Steve Brown
124 Posted 09/08/2018 at 07:35:00
Stones is a good ball playing centre half of the type we rarely create in England. He is comfortable taking the ball into midfield and can pick a pass. But he has a mistake in him due to lapses in concentration and his positional play can be way out. He spend most of the second half of the season benched with Otamendi selected ahead of him. It will be interesting to see how his game develops, but I think £47.5 million was good business because we have Mason Holgate. For me, he will be the better of the two over time.

On the broader points Darren Hind and Steve Ferns make, they are absolutely spot on. When did the school of science come to prefer journeymen who put in a shift over talent, particularly young talent? The abuse that Davies, Holgate, Lookman etc when they make a mistake or get caught in possession is awful. Yet the Everton crowd love battlers like Strac, Beckford and Besic just because they get a sweat on. I know talent and hard work go hand in hand, but being talented and trying things is better than risking nothing and playing it safe. Otherwise, we'd have a team of Ganas and Schneiderlins whoch is where Koeman and Lardiola were taking us.

David Midgley
125 Posted 09/08/2018 at 08:13:53
Steve #124. --School of Science.

If you've been fed gruel and stale crusts for years
you don't know what caviar is and it tastes terrible.

Steve Brown
126 Posted 09/08/2018 at 08:48:13
David, gruel and stale crusts is right. But I still remember the taste of the caviar.
Darren Hind
127 Posted 09/08/2018 at 09:02:13

These little exchanges between you and I about players are rapidly becoming part of my pre season ritual. I remember you took exception to me saying Gana and Schniederlin go to ground to often and were not good enough to propel us into the top six.

Last year I said we had not signed the right players and those we had signed were not good enough. You responded by telling me I was responsible for the death of Tinkerbell because I wouldn't clap - wonderful stuff.

I like that you are not scared to nail your colours and have the balls to say what you think. So often people disagree vehemently with a point on here without offering the slightest semblance of a counter argument.

Not you fella.

Tony Abrahams
128 Posted 09/08/2018 at 09:28:09
I see what you have done there Darren? Praising Mike whilst telling him he was wrong on both occasions!!

Seriously though, when praising Mike, you could be talking about yourself there Darren, and when you talk about Stones, being a great defender, it can obviously open you up for loads of ridicule, off people who have had little run ins with you in the past and maybe want to try and score cheap points?

John G, is always at it with you, it’s funny sometimes, sometimes it makes me smile, and I would love to sit next to you two in a boozer, because I love it when cats and dogs start arguing.

I always say life is full of contradictions, and John G, just gave me one before by saying Stones, wasn’t even England’s best defender during the recent World Cup. How I wonder? How can that be? Because if Stones wasn’t England’s best defender, he was definitely England’s best player, but that’s just my opinion of course?

Ray Robinson
129 Posted 09/08/2018 at 09:39:05
Darren, nailing your colours to the mast can be a very good feature. At least people know where you stand. However, some people prefer to adopt a definitive opinion after balanced assessment and that is fine too. Things are rarely totally black and white.

On the Stones debate, I was one of the Park End "panic merchants" who berated Stones for taking unnecessary risks with a game delicately balanced. However, I also appreciate that he is a fine footballer, a rare breed in the English game. It's possible to be both!

As for his overall defending skills, I think he still has somewhere to go yet. Ball watching, lack of concentration and questionable decision-making are all areas he can improve on. Possibly Guardiola thinks likewise on the evidence of Otamendi being regularly picked ahead of him?

Also, I disagree with your statement "the exaggerated applause for sweat and perceived effort has to a large degree replaced the appreciation of kill and intelligence. Our youngsters are treated in a brutal manner." Most fans would acknowledge that the likes of Niasse are not good enough but support him enthusiastically anyway - that's what we do! It doesn't mean we don't want him replaced by someone with silkier skills. And do local lads really get treated with more stick than the likes of Schneiderlin, Bolasie? They certainly feel it more, being local but is the abuse disproportionate? If anything, we cut the local lads more slack don't we?

Peter Mills
130 Posted 09/08/2018 at 10:21:33
Tony#128, I can imagine you in the corner of the pub, lobbing in the occasional hand grenade then standing well back!

I’m with Ray #129. I loved Stracq because he represented how I would be if playing for Everton - enthusiastic but appalling. There is no way I ever wanted him in our team, but I admired his effort. The same goes for Niasse, although he does at least have the ability to cause chaos.

The players I can’t stand, and I get the feeling that most at Goodison agree, are those who have natural talent but don’t apply it. Schneiderlin was a classic case last season.

We become frustrated because we want to see a team play with skill, pace and aggression, which is why some, like me, bang on too much about players like Ball, Kendall, Reid, Cahill (Terry White, there’s a clue about my all-time Everton 11, and a further clue about why I want to be looking ahead at present, instead of backwards). We can but hope that we are starting a new, better era.

TW has had some very compassionate, thoughtful posts over the past few weeks, the debates have been just as well fought but there has been a more tolerant and understanding tone to them - the site has been better for it.

Up the Toffees.

Darren Hind
131 Posted 09/08/2018 at 11:03:20

I've been wrong enough times to not care too much about who was right in a debate I had years ago. When Paul Tran said he had backed Lukaku to get 25 goals I said I would have given him double the odds if I was a bookie

You are right. there are certain hindsight merchants who wont offer alternatives, but will literally wait months to try to score a cheap point.
That's why I respect Mike and respond to him. In the unlikely event that he came back with an I-told-you-so. It would be because he had earned the right to and had actually told you so

Steve Carse
132 Posted 09/08/2018 at 12:41:00
Stones was fortunate in his time at Everton that he could develop his composure on the ball. And the main factor behind that was the brilliant positional play of Gareth Barry. Barry would always put himself in space close to Stones so that when Stones came under pressure or got himself into a tangle he was always there to get him out of trouble.

Stones is pleasing on the eye no doubt. A great centre back? Some distance from that I'm afraid.

Ernie Baywood
133 Posted 09/08/2018 at 15:16:12
Steve, and of course he had a manager who had faith in him when plenty of others wouldn't have.
Mike Gaynes
134 Posted 09/08/2018 at 16:42:30
Darren, as you know I enjoy our exchanges too. And I do see your point about the club's priorities having changed, although I must say that my all-time favorite Everton CB was Dave Watson, who was hardly sophisticated with the ball at his feet.

Tony, I don't mind at all Darren telling me I'm wrong. We haven't agreed on anything substantive in years (except Bryan Oviedo), but we both have fun with the joust.

Shaun Laycock
135 Posted 09/08/2018 at 21:22:49
Club says no news until until tomorrow, goodbye!

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