Not since last May have I wanted Everton to win a game as desperately as I will on Saturday when the Blues take the field at the London Stadium against West Ham. That’s not an especially surprising sentiment — the club’s plight hasn’t been this desperate since Thomas Myhre allowed Dion Dublin’s header to squirm through his hands 24 years earlier, leaving desperate Evertonians hanging on news from Bolton’s match at Chelsea to see who would be the third team relegated — but three points from the clash with the Hammers should act as a vital release valve for the pressure that has been building up at Goodison Park over the past week.

Fans are protesting, club personnel are being subjected to abuse and death threats, Everton’s hierarchy is being accused of weaponising those allegations to diminish the impact of the demonstrations, all while the team loses matches on an almost weekly basis and the media hover like vultures sensing an imminent carcass on which to feed.

Things haven’t felt this bleak at Everton in living memory, not least because the stakes are so much higher this time. In the mid-1990s, relegation felt like it would be a tragedy for a club that had spent just four years out of the top flight in 100-plus years. In 2023, however, with broadcast revenues dwarfing what the Premier League could command from television companies back then, the club over-leveraged, and still needing to fund the completion of an ambitious stadium project on the Docks, dropping into the Championship could be catastrophic for Everton.

Far from the great reset that some fans believe it could be – the catalyst to drive Farhad Moshiri, Bill Kenwright and the rest of the Board out – it could condemn the Toffees to a prolonged spell in the footballing wilderness while the club tries to recover. Think Sunderland or Leeds rather than Aston Villa or Newcastle. The idea behind pushing for change at the top has been to avoid relegation; hoping for the drop to bring about the revolution is a huge gamble.

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The way Everton are heading, though, hope might not come into it on either side of the equation because, with Frank Lampard having overseen just three Premier League wins all season, none since October, and his team succumbing to relegation rivals as a matter of routine lately, relegation is a worryingly distinct possibility.

To belabour the “Death Spiral” theme of Saturday’s report on the dreadful defeat to Southampton, the club feels like it has gone into an accelerating tail-spin over the past few days and you have to wonder what sort of club is going to be left amongst the wreckage.

The Blues have an absentee owner who has clearly checked out of the project yet still feels it necessary to goad supporters by resuming his on-air “bromance” with Jim White on TalkSport, despite (you would assume, seeing as he swore off it last year) all advice to the contrary.

It’s a club so financially hamstrung by its past mistakes, the Premier League’s spending rules and an owner who might well have grown tired of throwing good money after bad, that it is scratching around the loan market in what many fans feel might be the most important transfer window in the Everton’s history while its rivals in the lower reaches of the League are all spending money on upgrading their playing squads.

The manager looks increasingly as though he has no answers to arrest a run of eight defeats from nine in all competitions but, the longer he remains in his post despite a record that has certain relegation written all over it, the more you can only surmise that the club probably can’t afford to sack him and his staff. Not without offloading at least one saleable asset or sacrificing any permanent transfers they might have been planning between now and the deadline.

Meanwhile, there is a feeling that the Board of Directors have declared war on supporters with those suspiciously-timed allegations of abusive and threatening behaviour, death threats, and, infamously, an incident when CEO Denise Barrett-Baxendale was “put in a headlock” at a recent match at Goodison Park. It was an incident that didn’t warrant the involvement of the police but was incendiary enough to be fed to the media, adding to a building narrative of danger from protesting fans.

Video of Ellis Simms and Anthony Gordon being menaced by people in Goodison Road and a somewhat distorted account of Yerry Mina’s civil discussion with supporters as he was trying to leave the stadium didn’t help but then it only takes one match to burn a thousand trees… and the fire had already started.

While those players were safely ensconced in their pricey motors and Mina was in about as much danger as Bill Kenwright was when he interacted with fans outside the ground last year, telling them they had had “good times” under his stewardship, some of the abuse that has been levelled at club employees — many of them good Evertonians — further removed from the top of the club, and journalists simply doing their job has been appalling.

On one level, it displays a certain level of ignorance how corporate structure works, who really has the power, and who decides how things are communicated — just as it completely ignores how successful reporters retain their access to the businesses and people they cover. It certainly isn’t by biting the hand that feeds you the information on which your job depends and which your audience is there to consume.

On another level, it makes you wonder what sort of club this extreme fringe wishing illness on the CEO’s son and death to the Chairman and sending abusive tweets to lower-level club staffers is aggravating for. Is their support purely for the tribal element of seeing your team successful on the pitch; a scorched-earth, win-at-all-costs mentality with complete disregard for the safety and feelings of those working within the club? We are supposed to be supporting a club and a community as well as a supposed vehicle for success and silverware.

Ultimately, as last season showed, there is power in unity at Everton but it’s almost impossible to get tens of thousands of people all pulling in the same direction, particularly if they have no optimism or sense that things are changing to grab onto. The sacking of the loathed Rafael Benitez and the arrival of Frank Lampard a year ago provided an impetus that yielded unprecedented shows of support that did as much as anyone or anything to keep Everton in the Premier League last season.

Three points against West Ham would be massive. Some kind of progress in the transfer market over the next 12 days would help; so too would some indication from the top of the club that the supporters’ appeals for change are being heard, particularly if the consensus among Evertonians is that certain figures appear to be sowing division rather than fostering that unity of purpose.

Moshiri may not be able to go anywhere until he can find a buyer willing to offer him the price he wants but the removal of the twin lightning rods of the Chairman and CEO would send a signal that, while the owner is absent in a footballing sense, he at least acknowledges the need for change in the Boardroom to protect his considerable investment.

There was a belief that Kenwright should have stepped aside and accepted an honorary role like Life President when Moshiri took majority control at Goodison, and it’s not too late for that. By the same token, doubts were expressed about the wisdom of Everton once again promoting from within when former Chief Executive Robert Elstone left the club.

With the Chairman’s health once again the subject of rumour and Prof. Barrett-Baxendale the target of the aforementioned abuse, you do wonder why either of them seems content to press on. No longer is there a glorious legacy or glowing addition to the curriculum vitae tantalisingly out of reach. On the contrary, both look destined to have their names forever tied to the most disastrous period in the club’s history.

Perhaps, having seen the Kings Dock and Destination Kirkby proposals fail, the idea of driving the club into a brand new stadium on the Mersey is what keeps Bill Kenwright around but there’s no telling how much damage relegation to the Championship would do to the timeline and deliverability of the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock.

Things do seem to be irreparably broken at Everton, at least in the short term. There are moves the hierarchy can make, either through decisive action by the owner or humility and acceptance from others around him. While they may not be forthcoming, it behoves the fans to maintain their protests but also somehow to find the togetherness and the fortitude to back the players. Come 1 February, whoever is still in that squad is all we’ll have to pull us out of the mire.

Reader Comments (49)

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Martin Mason
1 Posted 19/01/2023 at 20:18:46
I completely disagree with fans that behave badly and show our otherwise great fans up. I can however understand that for many this is a protest at the end of a process of decline caused by total incompetence.

What more can we do when our passion, intensity and hard-earned cash is rewarded by total incompetence, chumocracy and out-and-out contempt?

The club deserves to go down, the fans don't deserve a club that is so totally mismanaged. We may go down Inshallah but there is nothing we as fans can do now. A loss on Saturday could be the end and a win could be meaningless as West Ham could go down with us.

Kieran Kinsella
2 Posted 19/01/2023 at 20:33:54
Lyndon,

I said before the Southampton game I had seen death threats on Twitter directed at Bill. I've no doubt there were other threats. It's abhorrent as is actual abuse versus criticism of journos.

But with regard to the "headlock" story, did you read the abuse directed at Evertonians, and moreover people from Liverpool (regardless of their football affiliation) in reaction to the alleged incidents?

I won't list all the diatribes here but suffice to say every nasty cliche about Merseysiders, and much worse, was all over Twitter on Saturday as a result of misleading articles readily published by journalists relying on sources from the club.

I was trying to find more details on the "attack" but every search for "Everton" produced endless abuse directed against "scum" "feral" "chavvy" "work dodging scousers" by people who – like the journalists – were only to happy to readily accept the story without any proper analysis.

I imagine some of those now abusing journalists are the same as those Everton fans who were on the receiving end of this abuse Saturday (which weirdly seemed to mostly come from Geordies and Londoners). It doesn't excuse it but it does show how this type of thing can exacerbate a volatile situation.

It would be nice if the fans could focus on supporting as you said, and criticize reasonably without abuse and threats. It would also be nice if the press vetted stories, and if the powers that be, Moshiri and Kenwright, did their jobs, or find others who can perform better.

Lee Courtliff
3 Posted 19/01/2023 at 20:39:27
I took my girlfriend, Liz, to the game on Saturday as she attended the West Ham game with me back in September and I was hoping she was some kind of Good Luck Charm.

Obviously, that didn't happen but she did mention to me that she noticed how the atmosphere changed in the second half... you could feel how angry everyone was.

I'm hoping it was just a bit too early in the season for the kind of support we saw last season and, once we approach the run-in, that kind of support will show itself again.

It just didn't feel like the 'bear pit' on Saturday and, without the fans, this team isn't good enough to stay up. Far too fragile.

Tony Abrahams
4 Posted 19/01/2023 at 20:41:13
Not one of your best, Lyndon, although to be fair to you mate, you are mainly writing about a sickening last six days. That is not easy, because of how our board tried to throw us supporters under their PR bus. You are also having to explain how a lot of innocent people are getting unnecessary pressure because of the board's inexplicable actions.

I believe the title of your piece is so true, Lyndon, but last Saturday's premeditated sickening debacle just confirmed exactly how Bill Kenwright has operated with completely opposite thoughts (to your title) since he got his very dirty, nepotistic paws into Everton Football Club.

In spite of this, I do pray Kenwright's legacy is partly saved, because of what you write, Lyndon, about how dangerous relegation would be for our club. I ‘was' one of the people who would take relegation to finally be rid of the ‘Kenwright curse' bu,t looking into a few things posted on ToffeeWeb today, I'm not so sure.

My message to Bill Kenwright right now would say, "You got away with dividing us for years but, if you love Everton and you want us to survive, then maybe your resignation might begin to unite us and, god knows, we definitely need uniting ASAP.

Clive Rogers
5 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:00:44
Relegation would be catastrophic for this club. The costs of the new ground and the subsequent debt, if it is completed, would hold the club in the lower divisions possibly for decades.

The financial side of the club has been neglected for decades. It is a low-income, record loss-making business with players' wages at 96% of income. Moshiri needs investment to complete the ground. Investors would surely want a guarantee of Premier League status to recover their investment plus interest.

He has been looking for investors without success for some time. It is not going to happen with the club in its current position. Neither is the sale of the club. One prospective buyer has walked away this week.

Buyers will wait for the outcome of the relegation battle. If relegation happens, Moshiri will get nowhere near what he wants to recover his investment. Investment and takeover are both dependent on Premier League survival. I really fear for the future of our club.

Jim Wilson
6 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:02:52
It is remarkable how similar the situation is to this time last season – only our position now is even worse.

After last season, you would think everything that could be done would be done.

Lampard should have gone after the Bournemouth fiasco and 2 signings should have been ready to go at the start of the window.

That is why I know this board is useless.

Christine Foster
7 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:06:02
Lyndon, a depressing, if not accurate article.

Martin, the club doesn't deserve to go down, but the CEO and Chairman need to be released by Moshiri as soon as possible.

We read of players not wanting to join the club because of the turmoil and our league position. Furthermore, a manager with hands tied behind his back. Throughout it all are the fans, desperate to drive the team to survival. In all of this is the owner, Moshiri, doing nothing.

The truth is elaborated on and shaped to suit a Chairman who can no longer call on media chums to give false praise. His road is at an end. For the love of God, go.

Let's us rebuild with hope, his legacy will be blackened in our history if he stays any longer. Materially, little will change in the short term but psychologically, it will change the culture of the club immediately.

The pressure on all concerned is immense. The silence is unforgivable, its effect is destroying the club's ability to recruit, and perform on the pitch.

Somebody, somewhere has to support Moshiri in his removal of this board. Sacking the board without a plan is not an option for him; he has shown little ability to commercially understand a football club, let alone single-handedly run one.

Active replacements should be sought but at the very least, an interim board appointed to manage the current crisis.

One thing has been clear to many of us for so many years: Kenwright will resist and cling on until the bitter end.

Barry Hesketh
8 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:06:04
I'm not in favour of shooting the messenger either, but if the messenger takes information on face value, purely because it has been seen as reliable in the past, for me that isn't good enough, especially when that information could be deemed as incendary. The leaking of information by some of the top brass served no purpose but their own and much of it wasn't given its true context.

Death threats and other such threats towards family members of any of us, not just those in positions of power, isn't welcomed by any right-thinking individual. I'm sure that the club and the authorities could very easily trace those offenders and punish them accordingly.

Derek Wadeson
9 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:12:10
As someone who has supported and attended games at Goodison since the early 1960s, I am saddened by what is happening at the moment.

I have no personal axe to grind with Bill Kenwright and have even argued in his defence with the guy who sits next to me in the Lower Bullens. But I feel now is the time for him to 'retire' if even just for his own health and sanity. Nothing can be gained from him overseeing the remainder of the season.

I was hoping that the protest would be peaceful at the end of the Southampton game. It was inside the ground as well as being powerful. I didn't join in; I was sad rather than angry.

What did surprise me was the chant of "Your not fit to wear the shirt" to the players – they looked shocked and I only pray that it galvanises them into proving the fans wrong and it is not used as an easy cop-out to hide behind lucrative contracts for the rest of the season. The hiding behind a contract is a bigger danger to us than anything the board and media can aim at us in the short term.

Lyndon Lloyd
10 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:12:17
Tony, I live for the day I get a compliment from you 😉 but in reply to this:

"You are also having to explain how a lot of innocent people are getting unnecessary pressure because of the board's inexplicable actions."

It was less an explanation of how (because I think most agree the Board's handling of the messaging and its timing was flawed and inflammatory) and more an appeal for calm and sense because, again, a lot of nasty stuff is being directed at people within the club who aren't the decision-makers.

But I agree on your last point. What did a banner once say? "If you love the club, let go!"

Laurie Hartley
11 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:13:56
All Evertonians should take your heading to heart, Lyndon, because we are the only people that can help this squad of players and, as things stand, that is all that matters at the moment. We have to get behind them.

Martin #1,

I can't agree with your last comment. If we are to get out of this situation, there has to be a turning point. We are running out of potential turning points but this is one of the few remaining.

This game looks harder to me than the Southampton or Wolves games but it is winnable and a win would give us hope. Something we desperately need.

Tony Abrahams
12 Posted 19/01/2023 at 21:56:05
You don’t need any compliments from me Lyndon, because I’m sure that many better people than my good self, have often told you that you have got a great gift for writing, mate.

I’m not the most articulate, it won’t be hard to pick up my own mistake in one of my above descriptions, and you do deserve a lot of praise, because of the overall message that you are trying to get across.

I hate what these people have done to Everton, but I hate the blame game even more. What’s done is done, it’s how you go about trying to rectify what’s been done, that has always been the most important thing, imo, so don’t worry about getting a tiny bit of criticism Lyndon, because ‘I also know’ you are coming with a MASSIVE EVERTONIAN HEART.

We can’t afford be divided - that’s the biggest message, I’m taking from this eight out of ten piece!!

Dennis Stevens
13 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:09:09
Incredibly, the Board seem to think that the passion of the supporters which dragged the Club to safety last season isn't necessary this season. Maybe they just don't care.

The one change that you mentioned, Lyndon, of Kenwright relinquishing his position of Chairman to become Club President would be the one short term change Moshiri could make that would appease the supporters somewhat, for now. All the better if the new Chairman comes in & does the job as a competent full-time professional.

Simon Crosbie
14 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:12:05
The sad irony for Kenwright is that had he stood down from the board prior to the previous season his reputation would be strong. Unfortunately he will always be remembered for the current situation. For players, coaches and owners, the capacity to know when it is time to hang up the boots is a worthy virtue. Otherwise, everything can end in tears.
Dave Abrahams
15 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:17:42
The Rice Lane Everton supporters club have been told they will not be receiving tickets anymore for Everton games. The club say this is because of ticket touting.

Strange that this ban should happen now. There is also a report that any supporter that signs the shareholders' protest form will be looked into. This report is supposed to come from EvertonFC. I wonder if any other supporter clubs have received this ban on tickets.

Mal van Schaick
16 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:26:38
Into the death spiral. Divided we fall. Uncomfortable headlines, that unfortunately tell us where we are at as a club at the moment.

Yet, we have strung together loss after loss, Man City aside. The board has decided to stick with the manager thus far, and will obviously take no responsibility themselves, so we have an impasse between the hierarchy and the fans and the manager may be collateral damage, but that doesn’t solve the problem.

It’s a conundrum that may only be solved on the pitch in the short term, and even that may be too late.

To get any credibility, to improve results, it is imperative to improve the our attacking options, and given our lack of recruitment in that department so far on this window we are teetering on the brink of implosion.

Will Mabon
17 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:36:38
Dave,

would like more detail or confirmation re. that report. "Any supporter" would be everyone that signed it!

Tony Abrahams
18 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:43:10
I’ve heard the whole of our crowd has been getting looked into Dave, for constantly putting ourselves through misery, only to be told we have had some good times. There are definitely saner people locked up in mental institutions.

I find it hard to believe this Dave, but once the blame game starts, then reason definitely goes out of the window. It becomes all about point scoring for many, but with Everton’s precarious position, all this should be put on the back burner, at least until we have had a go at trying to save our season.

If deceitful and divisive leaves us now, maybe we will have a much better chance of survival.

Dave Abrahams
19 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:48:11
Will (17), I’m a bit suspicious about the report myself it came on someone else’s mobile phone and I never paid full attention to it but that seemed to be the gist of it, maybe it has been seen on another fans mobile.

The Rice Lane supporters club ban is true and came on the same mobile phone.

Barry Rathbone
20 Posted 19/01/2023 at 22:51:00
Disagree with the airbrushing of the Mina video the fact he felt compelled to get out of the car and face down blockheads is all you need to know.

Look, this anguish about the portrayal of some of our fans is pure kopite behaviour it's on the verge of their Heysel rationale ie it was a result of a dodgy wall rather than rampaging fans. Indignation about fans being exposed has supplanted commentary on the perilous form of the team - it's ludicrous.

We have just as many ne'er do wells as any club and wackjobs going after club personnel in a threatening manner should be exposed not excused with weasel words.

Without money (and bereft of Usmanov we clearly have none) there is nothing of any substance the club can do. It's a roll of the dice whether we stay up regardless of who's in charge and how many threats club personnel receive.

Christine Foster
21 Posted 19/01/2023 at 23:18:39
Barry, of course we have idiots just as bad as that lot, probably even from the same families but it's all about proportion. The behaviour of that lot in comparison is far and beyond were we are today and that's not to excuse those without the way with all to see the damage they do to us, it cannot be justified, not even going to try. However given the circumstances we find ourselves in, it would be difficult to envisage just moral outrage in the press or peaceful protests as having any effect on the running of the club. We have had 16 years of trying it the Everton way.. to drive this clubs supporters to the point of anger and stupidity takes some doing. But the owner started it, the chairman stoked it and threw the fans under the bus.
Sadly this is the culmination of many many years of treating fans badly, will they ever learn? Will we?
Pete Clarke
22 Posted 19/01/2023 at 23:23:56
Whilst the board are trying their best to indeed divide our support it is ironic that once again the only way we can be saved from the damage caused by same board members is the supporters to get right behind the team for the rest of the season.
The players and managers response to that support is crucial of course but it’s all we have left.
As for Kenwright I would like to think that due to the amount of damage he has done to this club he would be banned forever and actually titled with as ‘ the man who ruined Everton ‘ This man is a disgrace to our club, the city and its people.
This is a three way fight now because our support will be battling to keep the team going on the pitch but also battling against our own boards wish to demonize and divide us through the media.
Lay off Twitter and get the banners out.
Kenwright. “ There’s not much you say that’s true,
Your not fit to be a blue “

Will Mabon
23 Posted 19/01/2023 at 23:28:19
There's going to be all sorts going on in the coming days and weeks, Dave, will be hard to know what's real on first appraisal.

If that's true about the Rice Lane supporters - shocking. Touting... sure.

Alexander Murphy
24 Posted 20/01/2023 at 04:51:32
Bill Kenwrights health is not a matter of speculation, it's a statement of fact.

The Chair of The Everton Shareholders Association states this unequivocably on YouTube (it's on "Across The Park" podcast) that Bill has almost no eyesight.

I'm so sorry to hear that Bill. Genuinely, I am… But.
Seeing as that is the truth, then PLEASE BILL, step back and look after yourself, and do it immediately.… PLEASE.

Sadly, Our once fine club has turned to lies upon its supporters.

There was NO headlock. DBB never said that. She did not.

When our Board are reduced by their own actions into spouting vile lies & deceit against Evertonians then the final proof is evident that many suspected lies and deceits must have real substance.

Eric Myles
25 Posted 20/01/2023 at 05:25:15
Alexander #24, if he had almost no eyesight it would be very obvious to all.

How does he walk? With confidence like a normal sighted person? Or cautiously like a toddler? Does he get assistance getting up and down the steps to his seat in the director's box?

I've had a few blind friends over the years and one of my current good friends is clinically blind, it's easy to spot if you know.

Unfortunately you won't be able to check it out at any of the remaining home games, but maybe there's some recent video of him around?

Would explain the good times quote though if he really can't see how shite the team are playing?

I do beleive he has an illness though. When it was originally brought up it was posted what it is. I looked it up (can't remember what it was though) but remember it was one of the glandular conditions, of which there are many.

Not life-threatening, but not nice to have and no way to cure it, just keep taking the drugs.

So you're right, if he is poorly then he should give up the struggle but being the egotist that he is I'm sure he's hanging on until a stand is named after him at BMD and there's a statue of him outside proclaiming him as the savour of Everton.

Dupont Koo
26 Posted 20/01/2023 at 06:18:23
Good work as always, Lyndon.

You are so spot on with Kenwright & DBB, in terms of staying behind amidst increasing abuses from Evertonians: they really crave to be identified as one of the "architects" of BMD, don't they?

There is nothing we can do other than keep putting daily pressure on the board to leave &/or make instant & dramatic changes.

Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 20/01/2023 at 08:24:12
Divide and rule. I found this definition:

"the policy of maintaining control over one's subordinates or opponents by encouraging dissent between them, thereby preventing them from uniting in oppositionon".

It is really sad it came to this and it's hard to see how they, the club, under its current leadership structure can repair the relationship with the supporters. I went through all of the posts and if they are now still pursuing ways to target fans' groups (if some of the rumours are to be substantiated), then they are ignorant and inflaming and already inflammatory situation.

I'm not naive. Changing the board tomorrow won't address the immediate issue of pulling us back from the cliff edge with failing brakes. We need to do a handbrake turn and focus on the here and now. That is down to the manager and players we have at our disposal. I can't contemplate relegation. It would absolutely break my heart.

But come the summer or maybe even after a few wins over the next month or so and victory at Anfield, the change at the top has to happen. It should have happened years ago, but we are here.

Moshiri is detached and doesn't want to be involved in the day-to-day. I could tolerate that. His problem, in my repeated opinion, resides with the people he left in control of running the club and spending his money. As soon as he took over, he should have installed his own team and.

Ultimately responsible? Of course and he is obviously looking for the exit door / ejector seat.

On Bill. He is 77 years old. If he was as big an Evertonian as he claims, he would have done the honourable thing years ago. I wish no ill on any human being or animal. For the sake of your health Bill, and Everton, just let it go Bill.

Morning rambling. Good read Lyndon.

Jim Lloyd
28 Posted 20/01/2023 at 08:33:31
I think the trouble we are in, is that the, Press, TV, and internet will focus on Everton as a broken club; and, as they see it, any bad news is good news.
Kenwright and presumably DBB have spread the so called incidents, or at least directed them to go out.

In a crowd of 40,000, there is no club in the country that won't have a miniscule number of bone heads who will take to verbal abuse; and even fewer who would use physical abuse.

Those two have lit the Blue touchpaper and I don't think the response of the rest of the those at the match, and those at home, have done anything but rightly rise up in protest at the potential destruction of our club.

Lyndon, yes, it is an awful situation that every Evertonian is faced with; and how do we react (or should we react at all!)
Whoever, leaked the "news that the Chairman and CEO have faced physical and verbal abuse, to such and extent that they are advised to stay away from the ground, has done untold harm to the club and it's supporters, and equally importantly, to all the decent staff who work for the club,
Can we stop the abuse? I doubt it. Someone sitting at a computer or using a phone, can spread their vile, malicious hatred at the touch of a button. Whoever was shouting "Your not fit to wear the shirt" at the match, are showing their frustration; but have no idea whatsoever, what damage they are causing to the players Morale. Nor do they care They want to shout it without thought of the consequences.

But, that is the action of a tiny minority; and the attack on a players car was about half a dozen by the look of it. Awful, mindless, destructive and harmful to what everyone else who is currently protesting at how the club is being run.

To see ten thousand, or more, signatures petitioning Moshiri to act, is a really fantastic response to the inertia that seems to have gripped the Board of this club.

It's awful to see Evertonians abused by so called civilised people in the media, and social media, but it isn't a surprise.

Tony Abrahams has, a few times, suggested that we should reach out to the team, via a few good blokes and let them know we'll support them through thick and thin. It's a good idea. They, and the manager are the only ones who can save this club, by winning and drawing.

Finally, if their is any truth that anyone who has signed the Shareholders Petition, will be looked into ( I hope that is a load of twaddle) but if it's true, then that will inflame the supporters even more. It's like the actions of the Stasi!


Stu Darlington
29 Posted 20/01/2023 at 10:43:11
I don’t agree with Tony’s@4 perception of your article Lyndon.
I thought it was a sober,well balanced,piece summarising the issues facing the club.
My view is that we are a failing business and have been for many years.That’s down purely to the owner,Directors and senior managers.
In the real world when a business is identified as failing,drastic action is usually taken with Directors and Senior Management being put on notice to turn things around or else!
I know personally of one big northwest company where this has actually happened this week.
Everton however is different.Although it is a business in a major high stakes industry,it’s ownership and control structure is pretty unique,essentially a one man business,and if he chooses to take no action the onus falls on the Directors to take the honourable way out and resign.At the moment however it looks as though they have no intention of doing this.
So continued peaceful protest is the only option left to the fans,and goes some way to explaining the desperate smear campaign against them launched by the powers that be.
The owner has put millions into the club,whether his own or Usmanov’s we’ll probably never know,but the bottom line is that this money has been consistently squandered by senior management.
Why on earth are they still there?

Kieran Kinsella
30 Posted 20/01/2023 at 13:40:12
Dave

If they use the club scouts to gather intel on the fans we should be safe

Neil Halliwell
31 Posted 20/01/2023 at 14:25:29
1) In a team talk before the Southampton game it is reasonable to assume that a manager would highlight the strengths of the opposition and the dangers they pose. Number one on this list would be Ward Prowse taking free kicks from outside the penalty area. So the BIG message was do not give away soft free kicks in this area.
2) Was Anthony Gordon present at this team meeting if so was he listening ?

Surely it was poor management if the meeting did not take place. If it did and Gordon was there what does this say about him? Who is responsible for this debacle

Eddie Dunn
32 Posted 20/01/2023 at 14:51:25
It is precisely at times like these that we all have to stick together.
We all have differing views on players and we all prefer a variety of coaches, but we all want Everton to succeed.
Therefore we have to get behind whoever puts on the shirt and whoever stands on the touchline.
We don't have to admire our owner or chairman but if we don't support the team, we will go down and the ensuing financial storm will make our current shortcomings seem a trifle.
Raymond Fox
33 Posted 20/01/2023 at 14:52:30
Neil, they will have been told to watch out for Ward-Prowse, they should know without being told anyway.
Problem is the average players best attribute is not intelligence.
John Raftery
34 Posted 20/01/2023 at 16:19:20
Very good article Lyndon. Unless everyone at the club, players, staff and supporters come together very quickly we are heading for relegation. The notion that might afford an opportunity for a reset is wishful thinking. Much more likely, it would herald a terminal decline.

Change at the top of the club is not going to happen before the end of the current season. As in 1998-1999 a change of ownership will take at best several months to arrange. We must hope when that change happens we are not jumping from the frying pan into the fire with a new owner worse than their predecessor.

Jerome Shields
35 Posted 20/01/2023 at 17:24:39
Kenwright & Co are doing what they have always done. Interested only self-preservation, maintaining the status quo which has allowed them to enjoy jobs and where accountability was lacking and their inadequacies were not exposed, as long as they showed loyalty to the regime. They did do well as did the Chairman in particular. We now are seeing years of this coming home to roost in the present situation.

A bureaucracy with the aim of preserving itself and keeping going. That is the culture that exists today and fans identify it at all levels as a direct clash with the performance culture they have craved for so long.

They cannot be bluffed that everything is okay, being well informed and treated as matchday nuisances, because they are organised and can maintain pressure over sustained periods, with media support based on honest and genuine endeavour and belief.

Unity is a given now, as the fans are 'all together now', have the unity of purpose to effect change on the Club, which desperately needs change, more than the hangers-on who desperately cling to power.

Make no mistake, there will be eruptions for the Club from top to bottom and the owner and beyond. We are all looking at the murky depths of mismanagement, but may be able to effect change and give enough support to avoid the even more murky depths of relegation, in Everton's particular case, which will happen if we did nothing at all.

Julie Naybour
36 Posted 21/01/2023 at 01:18:16
Lyndon, I couldn't agree more with the main sentiment of your article. The Guardian has just described us as a club in civil war.
I was so proud of the fans impassioned, unprecedented support at the end of last season which undoubtedly got the team over the line but I fear irreparable damage has been done this time by the few mindless thugs shameful aggressive behaviour towards young players. In fact it could be enough to seal what is looking increasingly like an unthinkable reality.
There are talks of Man U blocking loan moves out of concern for players heading into such a toxic atmosphere. We are already struggling to entice anyone of any calibre and I know for sure if I was a young player witnessing whats going on here I would avoid it at all costs. Lets face it - who in their right mind would come here now!
Please God, let me be wrong.
Huge, devastating mistakes have unquestioningly been made - though I am not convinced the blame is being apportioned accurately. However, change is needed and peaceful protests are one thing. Anything else is another nail in our own coffin.
Divided we will certainly fall and aggression especially levelled at the players will only serve to increase their obvious weaknesses.
Tomorrow is already filling me with dread. Disaster brings out the very best and the very worst in people. We are in the worst disaster the club has faced - possibly in its entire history. I just hope we witness the best our wonderful fans can muster and the very few who are doing untold damage are kept at bay
Steve Brown
37 Posted 21/01/2023 at 01:48:17
I beg to disagree - the fans have never been more united.
Kieran Kinsella
38 Posted 21/01/2023 at 03:29:03
Neil

I think that talking about it is one thing, making judgments at high speed once you’re on the field is another. I don’t suppose Gordon thought he was going to give away a foul. In that split second he wrongly judged he could make a tackle. We slag off Iwobi for not tackling now we slag off Gordon for doing so when it goes wrong

Christine Foster
39 Posted 21/01/2023 at 03:35:52
Julie, I totally agree that we have to fully support our team no matter what. The club I fear is a far different issue. Blame was incorrectly apportioned to supporters, not because of the peaceful protests (according to merseyside police there were a grand total of 5 supporters arrested, before, during and after the Southampton game, 3 drunk & disorderly, and a couple of minor offenses) hardly a violient protest, but because of a chairman and CEO wanting to discredit and besmitch the fans to deflect focus on said protests hours before a critical game. Leaving the manager and players hung out to dry.
One has to question the chairman and CEOs credibility after such an action, they may well have been subjected to online abuse, but of that I am not surprised. Death threats or harm are another issue and should be immediately be subject to police intervention. However, one has to question even the seriousness of that if it has not been referred to the police for action and investigation. It should be if it was a serious or credible threat.
So, we have been subjected to untold damage from our own board than any protestor, but we cannot and must not let our anger be used against us, we are better than that.
Rick Tarleton
40 Posted 21/01/2023 at 09:16:45
With due respect the word "deserve" doesn't come into it with regard to relegation, you go down no matter what your history is like,or no matter how passionate your support is, if you can't get enough points. The present Everton team is struggling to gain any points at all in recent weeks and often against fairly poor opposition.

Tactically Lampard seems limited and timid, the same players are picked irrespective of their recent form. A central striker who thrives on crosses and quick ball is deprived of such service by his selections and in recent weeks only Pickford, Onana and Gray in flashes have looked worthy of their place in a Premier League outfit.

Nor does Lampard seem to be motivating the players as he managed to do at the end of the last season with a great deal of help from the Goodison faithful.However, as I keep saying this seems to be true of all the managers in the last ten years, including Ancelotti.

Unless Everton can get some tactical know-how, some inspiration and some spirit, they will go down. Does the world care if Everton go down? I'm afraid the answer is not particularly. Half the Premiership is in a relegation battle and it's dog eat dog. Leicester is my nearest club and folk round here are too worried about the Foxes to reflect on the Toffees eminent history.

I haven't through my avid watching of Everton on tv (only the Palace game, a rare triumph, have I managed to see live) seen a worse team.

I fear that today we will lose to West Ham, they have one or two players who seem to have more to offer than our lot, but playing away at the moment seems to be better than playing at home and the West Ham crowd are possibly as toxic as our fans about their ownership and mismanagement, so if the game progresses and West Ham don't score or concede a goal perhaps the atmosphere will work in our favour.

I'm clutching at the proverbial straws, but straws are all we've got.

COYB.

Julie Naybour
41 Posted 21/01/2023 at 09:59:13
Hi Christine.

I know the protest was peaceful and they've been at pains to call for it to be nothing else.

But whilst we may be outraged with the board, we cannot deny the actions of a small group of fans which is horrendous. The aggression aimed at individuals, both board members and players, as witnessed on camera, is shocking, ugly and indefensible and doing untold damage.

The spotlight is on us and the media are rubbing their hands together in glee as they can't wait to discredit us — it only takes a few mindless thugs.

Phil Wood
42 Posted 21/01/2023 at 10:20:11
Great article Lyndon and I am in complete agreement with Julie ( 41).
Eddie Dunn
43 Posted 21/01/2023 at 10:22:13
Julie -the players being confronted by fans is very unusual these days due to the incredible amount of money they get paid nowadays.

It isn't so very long ago that players would come across fans regularly and would be reminded of a poor display in person.

Of course now, these men are generally cossetted and move in circles out of access to your average kid living in Kirkdale.

Ditto the Board.

Personally, I didn't see anything too worrying from those incidents. No one was physically hurt.

People in the public eye have to ensure their own safety.

What irks me is that the club have tried to use these incidents to deflect from the criticisms of their role.

I would suggest that if the players, manager and board/owner met fans more regularly(not in corporate boxes or lounges) but in properly arranged small meetings at a hotel or community centre, then they would get a real understanding of the frustrations and aspirations of the ordinary fan.

I imagine that on a normal matchday, the Chairman and players meet well-off locals who are star-struck and just happy to meet their idols.

Then they go home to their mansions and think all is well with the happy masses.

The distain towards even the shareholders(not having an AGM with questions from the floor) gives an idea of the general attitude to the fans.

Portraying us as toxic working class oiks to be avoided, will merely increase the divide between Us and Them.

John Maxwell
44 Posted 21/01/2023 at 10:28:35
If I fail at my job, then I get the sack.

Kenwright has failed for over 25 years and is still there.

Cosy FC, hopeless romantic, living in the past is not what this club needs.

Jerome Shields
45 Posted 21/01/2023 at 12:10:40
Eddie#43

I agree.

Such protest is as long as when Football began.No of the incidents where beyond anything I have ever witnessed or seen.Because the protest has been genuine the Media are falling in behind the Supporters.The Club has been shown to be the perpetuators of fake news.Going forward the Club has continued with it's High Risk strategy ,unsubstantiated by the Police , whilst the Fan United are continuing to support the team and continuing with peaceful protest.

Those that work for Football Clubs also know they will be subject to praise or not ,by the many fans who attend and watch games by other means.

Stu Darlington
46 Posted 21/01/2023 at 14:34:51
Whatevever happens at West Ham today one thing is certain and that is that the relationship between supporters and the board is totally fractured.Never having been great at the best of times it is now totally beyond mending and it goes a lot further back than the disgraceful events of last week where they tried to shift the blame onto the fans.
They are the ones responsible for appointing manager after manager without any success,they are the ones that wasted £600 million on under performing players,they are the ones who negotiated long term contracts for old players with no sell on value, they are the ones who have tried to eradicate communications between club and supporters and they are the one’s responsible for the position we find ourselves in now. They have left us in a parlous financial state which will take us years to recover from.Their failure is obvious and significant,proven beyond reasonable doubt.
Here ends the case for the prosecution,sentence yet to be determined!
The problem is this abject failure and toxic atmosphere begins to permeate throughout the club.
Morale is destroyed,confidence is undermined,and there develops an expectation of failure amongst the players and coaching staff,rather than a belief that they can win.
We cannot allow such a toxic relationship to develop between the fans and the team.No more boos or shouts of “your not fit to wear the shirt “We must continue to support the team home and away.Encourage a Danny O’Neil philosophy and keep shouting it out loud.I don’t believe we have the worst squad in the league,in fact at the start of the season I felt that with the acquisition of a couple of attacking players and better luck with injuries we could be quite competitive.
This Board are finished.They will never be accepted by the fans again
The supporters are eternal. We will be there in the future whatever league we are in. The rest will only be remembered with disdain.
John Boswell
47 Posted 22/01/2023 at 20:53:58
Stu @46 your final paragraph perfectly sums up the situation of the supporters, we will always support the team. We are a community, we are Everton, we will prevail. COYB.
Derek Knox
48 Posted 25/01/2023 at 08:03:25
What an absolute mess we find ourselves in again, and I reiterate that the Fans and Supporters (genuine ones I mean) have played no part in this fiasco apart from to question, and quite rightly so, what is happening to Our Club ? As Christine, Jim Lloyd and the Abrahams have all pointed out, with a fan base of 40,000 plus there are bound to be a few 'hotheads' but they are in no way representative of the Majority.

There has been rumour (so, unfounded) that a lot of these 'so called threats' weren't even from Everton Supporters but by some anarchists hoping to stir up the simmering cauldron and throw an accelerant on the fire as well. Of course Journalists haven't missed the opportunity to report and exaggerate these issues to further tarnish the name of Everton at a time when we need even more unity and togetherness.

One sad fact in life, that people will more readily accept 'bad news' (whether true or not) than focus on the good and the factual aspect. In Moshiri's Interview with NSNOW which must have been some time ago because Jazz Bal has left that support group, not that they seemed to reflect the general fan view anyway, there are so many untruths and discrepancies. I wouldn't trust him to do anything that was best for Everton. To say that Kenwright was a highly respected figure in World Football was an absolute joke.

Tom Bowers
49 Posted 26/01/2023 at 18:22:28
It has been a very rough ride over the last 2 months and no getting away from it – Everton have performed badly. Those two Bournemouth games set the trend and alarm bells but little was done to arrest the situation.

Everton have the personnel to get out of this mess but it will need a different approach from what Lampard was pursuing.

I had thought for a few seasons that Everton lacked the strength in midfield, both on the ball and off the ball. Marking and tackling was poor for the most part and creativity was lacking.

When Richarlison was fit and in the team, he was a threat because he is a natural finisher and Calvert-Lewin was a decent target man, especially in the air.

This helped Everton get by in recent seasons but too many other weaknesses have cropped up over the last 12 months which Lampard has been unable to deal with.

Iwobi has been a different player this season but he, like the others, has slipped into the doldrums somewhat.

The midfield frailties have consequently left their mark and put a big burden on the ''defense'' and sadly they have not been able to stem the flow.

Oddly enough, the only good performance over the last three months was against Man City, so why not against other lesser teams, one might ask?

We shall see if a new guy, Bielsa or Dyche, can bring some stability to the side and it would be nice to start against the Gunners and if not, certainly against Leeds.


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