Everton show spirit but Cup defeat proves costly

06/01/2023 114comments  |  Jump to last
Man Utd 3 - 1 Everton

Conor Coady scored at both ends as Everton made their expected exit from the FA Cup at the hands of Manchester United

Everton made their expected exit from the FA Cup at the hands of a superior Manchester United side at Old Trafford but any positives gleaned from an unexpectedly plucky performance were largely negated by injury to Alex Iwobi.

It took just three minutes for the Blues to fall behind in what already felt like a hugely difficult game for them to win but they battled back to go into the half-time interval all square and could count themselves unfortunate that an excellent second-half equaliser was chalked off before a late penalty put the tie to bed in the hosts' favour.

Conor Coady scored at both ends, his clumsy own goal proving to be the winner for United even before Marcus Rashford converted from the spot in stoppage time but Frank Lampard, already under enormous pressure prior to today, would have taken solace from his players' display before Iwobi was stretchered off less than five minutes into the second half.

The midfielder injured his ankle in a challenge by Tyrell Malacia and left the ground on crutches ahead of a scan of the damage that Lampard hopes won't be as extensive as first feared.

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With Nathan Patterson already out of action with knee ligament damage, the Everton boss altered the line-up that started Tuesday's debacle against Brighton by drafting Seamus Coleman into the starting XI and restoring Ben Godfrey to a central defensive trio.

Dwight McNeil and Dominic Calvert-Lewin dropped back to the bench as Neal Maupay and Amadou Onana returned from suspension while Anthony Gordon was available again off the bench as he recovers from illness.

With speculation about his future rife in the run-up to the game, Lampard needed a big performance from his charges but they put themselves behind the proverbial eight ball before the tie had really had a chance to get going. 

The ball was lost by Iwobi in the centre-circle and though Godfrey showed Marcus Rashford the outside, he failed to keep pace with the England international and with too few midfielders tracking back, Vitalii Mykolenko was caught covering two opponents and chose to cover the wrong one which left Antony free to tap in at the far post.

A cheap giveaway by Jordan Pickford resulted in a chance for Anthony Martial to double the lead but he dragged the resulting shot wide and Casimero was also off target with an ambitious effort a few minutes later.

Everton levelled the tie in the 14th minute, however, after Demarai Gray had rattled the post and seen his shot come back off David de Gea for a corner.

That set-piece ended with an excellent piece of play by Onana to hold off Casimero and play in Maupay whose drilled shot to the near post got caught under De Gea's feet and as the goalkeeper dallied in embarrassing fashion, Coady pounced to poke the loose ball over the goal line.

United were almost back in front a couple of minutes later when Godfrey again too hesitatant in backing off  Rashford and allowing him to drive past him down the outside again but this time Pickford made a terrific save to deny Martial.

And the England keeper was called into action again just past the half hour mark when awful control by Iwobi in the opposition half ended with Pickford having to push away a bouncing effort from Rashford before Christian Eriksen ended the first half with a whipped shot that narrowly cleared the bar.

Iwobi's afternoon came to an end just two minutes after the restart for the second period when he hared away on the counter and was tackled by Malacia, his ankle rolling awkwardly into the turf leaving him writhing in pain before being carried off in a considerable amount of pain.

Two minutes later, the home side restored their lead and, again, it was poor defending as Rashford drilled the ball across goal from the same part of the box as the first goal but this time Coady stuck out a leg to intercept but simply guided the ball into his own net instead.

Antony had a tame shot saved after cutting inside Mykolenko and Rashford forced Pickford to palm a dipping drive over the bar while, at the other end, the Ukrainian almost bagged an equaliser following excellent work by Iwobi's replacement, Abdoulaye Doucouré, and a low cross from Coleman but he couldn't make proper contact.

The visitors thought they had pegged United back again with a quarter of an hour to go when Calvert-Lewin finished a brilliant move by converting at the near post but a check by the Video Assistant Referee found Gray to have been fractionally offside in the build-up.

The winger had expertly heel-flicked a return pass past his marker for Coleman to drive towards the byline and cross to the near post where Calvert-Lewin chested it over the line but the celebrations of the magnificent travelling fans were killed by the VAR decision.

Pickford finger-tipped a late free-kick from Rashford over the bar after Onana had clattered through Lisandro Martinez before United countered again in injury time as Everton pushed for a second goal and Godfrey was adjudged to have fouled Alejandro Garnacho in the box. Rashford comverted the resulting penalty and Everton's FA Cup run was over before it had really begun.

Lampard won't have got the result to have convinced his superiors that he should definitely continue as the Toffees' manager and while there were plenty of frustrating individual errors and poor decisions made by his players, he will have been pleased with the spirit and application shown.

Nevertheless, his team haven't won a match in any competition since October and the calls for his head will continue to rise in volume the longer that miserable sequence continues. The next two games, against fellow-strugglers Southampton and West Ham, could be pivotal for the future of both the club and the manager.


Reader Comments (114)

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Clive Rogers
1 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:09:52
We were unbeaten during the World Cup!!!
Jim Bennings
2 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:30:01
I'm not really one for patting people on the back for spirited displays. It's appalling that they don't turn up like that every week really isn't it?

I'd have been even more disgusted and disillusioned if they hadn't turned up spirited last night after the criticism and the embarrassing form we are in.

Southampton have gone to Palace today and got a result that we probably wouldn't have got and Portsmouth have given Spurs a game with spirited displays, so pardon me if I'm not over ecstatic with a "we turned up" job.

In the cold light of day, we've lost two more games – a combined 7-2 in the space of a few days.

We've got limited attacking threat, no creative midfielder, no goalscoring midfielder and our full-back options on either side are worryingly below average.

Jack Convery
3 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:38:47
Bobby Brown Shoes is the new Portugal Manager!!! That's one scary scenario avoided.

As for last night we did as well as we can at the moment. Take Rashford out of it and it would have been a lot closer. Class tells every time and we have no class at present. Not on the pitch or on the Board either.

Dave Lynch
4 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:39:55
'Spirited' doesn't win you games.

All I saw was a disjointed display, a midfield that lacked structure and cohesion and a lack of firepower.

Jim Bennings
5 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:44:24
Dave 4

I completely agree.

When I read headlines about Everton, it's like we are plucky little old Scotland the brave and it's the exact mentality that our boardroom have allowed to escalate and feed life to over this past two decades.

Spirited performance levels should be the norm every single week and, if they are not, then the question needs asking why.

Brentford are spirited every week and look at where they are now.

All I witnessed last night was all I expected, giving possession away needlessly and, players backing off allowing shots in, full-backs getting tied in knots and backing off.

Danny O’Neill
6 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:51:30
Come on Jim, you know football and Everton as well as anyone on here. I don't do the who beat who theory.

We beat Palace 3 - 0, which was probably our best home performance and result of the season so far.

Shrewsbury, Tranmere and Oldham didn't just give us a game, they knocked us out of the cup. Isn't that referred to as the romance of the FA Cup?

Hereford v Newcastle in the 70s.

We played well last night but lost.

Hopefully, Southampton will revert to type next week and we can show the same commitment followed by a second win of the season against West Ham.

Tony Everan
7 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:52:54
They say managers live or die by their results; not true at Everton. 3 wins in 20 league games, 1 win in the last 12 matches, out of both cups and a year into the job, this season showing an alarming 19% win rate. No other club in the land would allow that level of under-performance to continue.

When will our boardroom wake up and stop living in a fantasy world where, if you bury your head in the sand, everything will turn out alright? It's time they took a look at the cold hard facts that are staring them in the face.

Time to be proactive and at least try to stop the rot. Better to try and fail than to do nothing at all.

Neil Lawson
8 Posted 07/01/2023 at 14:58:25
Light the blue touch paper. Just before the injury to Iwobi, I had posted that he was dreadful and should be replaced. Not in the manner that occurred, however. That was truly unfortunate.

I believe that, whilst he has lifted his standards and turned in some industrious performances, the end result is all too often lacking. In reality it's a lot of pretty tippy-tappy stuff and a lot of running around after the opposition and he constantly flatters to deceive.

We were improved after his injury. Onana played in a different position and having been a bit of a nightmare in the first 60 minutes, was much more effective and much less profligate.

I'm not a great fan of Doucoure but at least he did attempt to drive forward more than others did. Having Calvert-Lewin as a potential target helped. So, whilst it wasn't great, it wasn't as poor either and they did, finally, carry some threat, albeit limited.

I am not optimistic but Iwobi's absence may help change the balance a little. Maupay wasn't great but he does battle without support and perhaps he needs to play much closer to Calvert-Lewin?

Clutching at straws? Probably. Especially as the failure to include any youngsters on the bench and to introduce Simms when we were chasing the game, is mystifying to me.

When attacking me, as will surely happen, please be gentle to an ageing old codger who recalls the glory days of 1966, Alan Whittle's goals, the mid eighties, Bayern Munich, and the Dogs of War.

Pretty much nowt since apart from a promising 20 mins at Wembley in 2009.

Sean O’Hanlon
9 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:04:12
Absolute garbage.

Terrible passing, continually caught in possession – in fact most of our passes are telegraphed!

I often wonder at the intelligence of players. It's like kids having a kick-about in the park. It's embarrassing to witness.

Is it true Iwobi cost more than the whole Brighton team?
Everton bring in a load of players (paying over the odds) and they think they've done good business. They have a decent game and everyone thinks, "What a great signing".

But then lack of consistency causes us to lose games with basic schoolboy errors. If these players were really any good, they would have been snapped up by the top sides...

So now, everyone blames the board! What about our player recruitment policy? We've had plenty of money, yet we're continually shite.

How will a change of the board change our fortunes? We've had it – and we'll struggle in the Championship.

Ian Bennett
10 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:04:29
Tony, add in we got hammered by Bournemouth twice, beat by Wolves and Leicester who were both bottom.

We were smashed by Brighton, struggled against Forest.

The only way we can play football, is by stopping the opposition playing football.

Frank out, and take the rest with you.

Matt Henderson
11 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:04:51
I too think we might be better off overall without Iwobi. He can't cross, shoot or tackle very well and you can't carry someone with those limitations at the front end of the pitch.

He does try hard and play the occasional decent pass but that's not enough. Maybe structurally we might be better off and try and play a different way without him that will benefit us overall.

We can't continue doing what we are doing as, bar Gray, all our other forwards are also unsuited to it. We need to keep it tight at the back and go direct.

Barry Hesketh
12 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:05:39
Neil @8

I wholeheartedly agee with your assessment of Iwobi prior to his injury, I lost count of the number of times he needlessly lost possession, he wasn't alone, but given his upturn in form in the last year, I expected better from him. His one saving grace is that he doesn't hide and tries his utmost in most games, but is he good enough to be given a new lucrative five year contract at this juncture, I think not.

I do hope he returns to the first-team squad asap as despite his failings he remains one of our most reliable providers of chances, and that in itself is a sad indictment of the current squad.

Eddie Dunn
13 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:16:34
Iwobi has been off form for ages after a brief early season spell.

He loses possession far too often and is half-hearted in his tackling.

When he rolled his ankle in the tackle that ended his game, my initial reaction was that he was making a meal of it. I did the same a few weeks ago and played on. I'm 62 and was back on the pitch the following week. What they now call ligament damage the rest of us call a bit of soreness, that a bit of tape and sock can sort out.

These guys are made of glass and it seems that the medical team is always too keen to take someone out of the team. Calvert-Lewin and his "fatigue"… for God's sake. What would Howard Wilkinson have said to him back in the day?

"Run up another slag heap, you lazy bastard".

Anyway Iwobi will not be missed. Get the kids in instead.

Jim Lloyd
14 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:47:44
Neil, I think you're right. It's good that he's playing a lot better than he was; but, if he was up for sale, would anyone buy him?

He runs around a lot, but a bit like a headless chicken does. He's whole-hearted and, occasionally, something he does comes off, but that's like the law of averages.

So; it's a lousy way to go missing but maybe it will give one of the younger players a chance.

I also think Gana Gueye was poor last night, as he was on Monday night. It's possible that he's lost the speed of thought just like the ability to pass, in the speed of the Premier League since he's been away.

Overall, though, I thought it was a much better display than Tuesday night's cave-in. Man Utd had a big squad of good quality players to pick from and I thought we were much better than the 3-1 scoreline suggests.

Whether Lampard is manager or not, we've got to turn the losses into draws and some draws into wins. I thought last night was a really good team effort, that might give us a chance to stay up. That's if we play all the other games to come with the same intensity.

I've written that he should be sacked after Monday night's performance. However, it's a very dodgy move, especially as it looks like we'll have to have a whip round to bring any players in.

I don't think he's doing himself (or us!) any favours by not using last night as an opportunity to bring at least two young lads in. We'd have still had Calvert-Lewin, Gueye, and maybe Iwobi, to come on as subs. Now we have to bring them on, basically untried, in league matches.

Gray is more capable of scoring from open play than Calvert-Lewin and I'd hope we'd bring Simms in as a partner. I don't really see McNeil as an effective player but perhaps if he plays in a different position, he might be more effective.

Overall, those who played last night were much more like a team than on Monday night. Maybe there's some hope, even if we can't bring anyone in until we sell.

Kenwright has not, to my knowledge, come out with any sort of stirring speech to give us all hope that we are not in the deep mire I think we are.

I'd have thought that, as the voice of Everton Football Club, as a man who other club Chairmen come running to for advice, who has guided us through choppy waters to unparalleled success (think there was something in that coffee!) and trophies a-plenty, that we are in something of a rather dodgy situation.

Y' know, Horatio on the Bridge, Nelson at Trafalgar, Churchill in the Battle of Britain. Something to give us hope of better times to come…

What am I saying??? Of course he has… what am I thinking?

That's right — "We've had some good times!"

Tony Hill
15 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:56:21
It wasn't just spirit last night, we had some poised passages of play and we were unafraid.

Let's hold our nerve.

Arnez Desmond
16 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:56:53
In retrospect, Everton did well. The VAR decision was as expected always going to go against us.

Gana's position should be replaced by Coleman moving forward. Gana has been largely poor since returning. It was, as I shared, a bad idea to bring him back. Gana did not show fight or willingness to chase back when he lost possession.

Coleman showed fight and would possibly do better in the centre as opposed to the flank because that is a position which requires pace.

We should use Gordon and McNeil in the wings. Keep the back 3 together. In the midfield, Onana and Doucs. In front, we should keep Gray and Calvert-Lewin. We should be good. Man Utd got lucky with the VAR.

Matt Henderson
17 Posted 07/01/2023 at 15:59:50
We are also so slow all over the pitch. Even when Iwobi got injured last night, the break was on but they caught up to him easily and he is probably one of our quicker players. Maupay against Wolves was the same thing on a break.

We've been buying slow players for years as speed became more and more important and it just shows how behind the curve we are.

Gomes, Sigurdsson, Alli, Allan etc were all purchased and struggled to some degree because of pace. This was on top of an already slow defensive line. Even last summer, we bought McNeil who suffers from the same issue.

We need to look at getting some legs into the team.

Alec Gaston
18 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:00:14
I would like to hear Lampard talk about winning games – he is forever speaking about how good other teams are, how tough the match will be, etc… Coady did the same last night.

That acceptance that we will do well to win or draw or we came to disrupt them puts doubt in an already fragile squad of players. You will never win a game if you start off thinking you can't.

Dave Abrahams
19 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:08:42
According to another website, Iwobi's dad has stated that his son's injury isn't as bad as first thought, he claimed Iwobi should be back in a couple of weeks.
Jim Wilson
20 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:09:43
The latest bandwagon of playing 3-5-2 is now in full flow despite the fact that we haven't won one game this season using this system.

You couldn't make it up.

And people wonder why we are doing so badly!

Jim Bennings
21 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:14:37
Everton haven't won a football match since a week before Halloween.

That says everything we need to know.

Paul Hewitt
22 Posted 07/01/2023 at 16:58:33
"Show spirit" — How sad is that headline?

That should be a given every match!
Sean O’Hanlon
23 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:16:19
VAR? Don't make me laugh! Are we now using the VAR decision as an excuse? We're really grasping at straws.

We were well thrashed and lucky to get away with 3-1.

Allan Board
24 Posted 07/01/2023 at 18:28:19
Tough shit if the Board get the stick for this.

Everton as a business have to win games of football which will, in turn, make it more successful, thus increasing revenues of which the majority of this will go in the owner's pocket. The shareholders will become richer, which includes any Chairman, the CEO and other board members.

If any large business fails, the buck always stops with the Chairman, CEO and Board members – with them getting the bullet. Don't get drawn into Kenwrights rhetoric – if he and his cronies want to play Billy Big Bollucks in the business world, then they had better expect a whole load of shit when their incapability, inadequacies and poor business decision-making causes the business to fail.

All decisions come from the the CEO, through the Chairman and are decided at Board level – the owners pay them handsomely to make the correct decisions.

Every aspect of this business has failed miserably so it's on them solely – it's time for them to leave with their payoffs and go ruin someone else's business because this club and the fans need our dignity back.

Relegation or not, now is the right time.

Ian Edwards
25 Posted 07/01/2023 at 21:00:14
Why hasn't Lampard been sacked?

It's an outrageous dereliction of duty by the club.

Stuart Sharp
26 Posted 07/01/2023 at 21:27:04
Ian @25,

Because not everyone agrees he has to go. And let's face it, you say the same about every manager who doesn't play attacking football, ie, all recent ones.

Some feel he's getting as much as he can out of crap players. Others, like me, are borderline indifferent about who is in charge because the squad is so shite. Though a defeat to Southampton might convince me.

The silence from the board is annoying, but I assume it's because they aren't fully backing him but instead waiting to see what their options are should we lose to Southampton.

We still haven't played half the season, and are in the Bottom 3 on goal difference. I'm really in two minds about what I think should happen, but then I'm not on the board.

Paul Hewitt
27 Posted 07/01/2023 at 21:33:39
Ian @25,

You don't expect the board to make a positive decision, do you?
Jim Bennings
28 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:09:07
Ian @25
Our players are brainless.

You can sack Lampard tomorrow, bring in Dyche, Duncan, Rooney, Tuchel or whoever… but our players would still be brainless.

Watch Wolves tonight and they at least have players that know how to use the ball, intelligence on the ball.

I don't see Lampard as a great manager, but I do remember that, prior to taking the Everton job, he'd had only 18 months experience as a top-flight boss himself.

As I say, if Lampard had been here for 4 years and we were in the situation we are in now, I'd be the first one to say sack him.

But I don't see any other manager working wonders with this squad we have. I'm sorry but I just don't.

Phil Malone Jnr
29 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:10:25
Can everyone stop talking about the fucking board!!!

Lampard is relegating us!!!!!

Ah bless, the previous managers ruined it ... Shut the fuck up!!!

Lampard is relegating us right now... Now!! Not over previous years!!! He is relegating us this season! Open your fucking eyes!!

Colin Glassar
30 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:14:51
Sack the Board!!!
Stuart Sharp
31 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:15:58
Sorry, Phil, I didn't catch that?
Brent Stephens
32 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:16:13
Phil #30 "The previous managers ruined it".

Well, you said it, Phil! Which implies a pattern. That it's something other than the managers. One every year almost.

So suddenly the "club" have got it all right and it's the latest in a long line of managers who takes all the blame?

Jim Bennings
33 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:21:14

Do you seriously trust the laughing ventriloquist dummies, Kenwright and Moshiri, to get the next appointment right?

And Little Miss Dynamite Barrett-Baxendale to make the latest statement of speil?

I don't.

Andy Crooks
34 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:23:11
Ian @ 25, I agree.

Most other clubs take decisive action but the Everton board are inert and inept. At the moment, they have, in Frank, a compliant scapegoat. I suspect that their decision will be based on what is best for them and how they will look.

Frank is a really top man, I know that personally. He might still become a good coach; however, I think he is done at our club.

Peter Carpenter
35 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:32:59
Some good news in the Echo:

Former Everton manager Roberto Martinez has a 'verbal agreement' in place to become the next man in charge of the Portugal national side.

But how did he talk them into that?

Brendan McLaughlin
36 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:36:48
Peter #36

Seen that but "verbal" agreement was unexpectedly released?

Is it a "Last chance, Everton, to nab me" ploy?

Peter Carpenter
37 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:41:58
I am sure for a phenomenal man like Roberto, his word is his bond.

I bloody hope so anyway.

Tom Bowers
38 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:48:56
Without doubt, Everton do have some good players but the overall approach – or strategy if you want to call it – is all wrong.

Frank is using tactics that he probably got used to at West Ham and Chelsea but it is useless with this Everton line-up that doesn't have any real goalscorers.

They don't have any unity or solidarity in the middle of the park when they don't have possession which is a lot when the passing is so poor.

They frequently get caught out when they make an errant pass or tackle which, when you only have a back three of not-so-quick defenders, puts you in a lot of trouble, hence the first goal by Man Utd yesterday.

Frank has never addressed this and that is why so many average teams are beating us.

With arguably our most consistent performer this season now injured the writing is on the wall to get that midfield tightened up so they can perhaps scrape a few vital points together ad get them out of this mess.

Rob Halligan
39 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:49:47

Lampard hasn't spent over half a billion quid on average players, paying them obscene wages on long-term contracts, even extending contracts for some. Lampard hasn't sacked all the previous managers which have cost us a fortune in compensation.

It's all this which now has Profitability and Sustainability rules stopping us from buying better players. Lampard was dealt a raw deal when he was appointed, on the last day of the January transfer window, and with only about seven hours left of it, so he couldn't even shop around.

This has got everything to do with the board! KENWRIGHT OUT! Followed by Barrett-Baxendale, and Sharpie, because I honestly haven't got a clue what he does?

I do agree though, that I think Lampard is on borrowed time, and the Southampton game will make or break him. And while I'm typing this, I'm just reading on Sky Sports News that Man Utd are thinking of taking Wout Weghorst, the Burnley striker, on loan.

Tony Everan
40 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:53:26
I read a ridiculous comment but funny – alluding to our Frank never being a good fit for Everton.

The commenter said “It's like putting Tony Hadley as the frontman for Echo and the Bunnymen”.

Brendan McLaughlin
41 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:53:42
Relax, Peter #38,

To be fair, I think Roberto realised after his Wigan and Everton debacles... he didn't have all the tools for club management and went for the partial retirement option that is international management.

No way he's coming back to manage a club side.

Jeff Armstrong
42 Posted 07/01/2023 at 22:54:13
I too believe Iwobi being out is a blessing, he’s crap.
Mike Price
43 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:06:11
Iwobi is shocking; if we give him an improved contract, it will be another weight dragging us down for years.

There's not another team that is remotely interested in taking him, never mind paying a fee for him on the salary he's on now!

We're looking to give him a pay rise and a longer contract…..what the holy fuck is going on?!!

The incompetence is comical, disgusting and startling all at once.

Danny Baily
44 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:06:48
When nothing is going right, it's time to reconsider the first names on the teamsheet. For us that's Iwobi, Pickford, Coady etc.

Iwobi being out will force change, which is good and bad. On balance, I think it will turn out to be a positive.

Peter Carpenter
45 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:11:57
Dele Alli on the way back? An unlikely saviour?
Phil Malone Jnr
46 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:14:18
Lampard didn't spend £700M on shite, I agree.

But, regardless of who's to blame, Lampard right now (not Kenwright, not Moshiri, not the new stadium, not Koeman, Martinez, Silva, etc) ... Lampard is relegating my club!

And all I hear on here is that it's the board!... Yes, the board is awful. But while you all go into the bigger problem, we're being relegated by someone whose only job is to coach football.

But you all enjoy your big deep and meaningful posts about the board and how the finances of past seasons, managerial appointments, and recruitment aren't right That is not for now!!! That's for a time when we're not in the fuckin relegation zone in 2023.

But, hey ho. Not Lampard's fault we get relegated though?

Keep talking about the things that matter, eh, ToffeeWeb?

Maybe a new board will help us play a better system to keep us up this season.

Right, ToffeeWeb? Keep singing "Sack the Board!" at the end of games where Lampard is getting beat and we might stay up.

Brent Stephens
47 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:24:24
Phil #47 - you have a plan for a new appointment? Who?

Let's assume you know who we should appoint. How are you going to get him appointed? The board will decide and appoint? Ah, but the board is the problem! So where do we go with that? How do you get your man appointed? Now?

And if you don't know who we should appoint, who should make that judgement? Who will be making that judgement? I suspect who that'll be.

Stuart Sharp
48 Posted 07/01/2023 at 23:46:58
Perhaps, Phil, the giant bag of arse that is our squad might also have something to do with it?

I don't sing 'Sack the Board' because it seems fundamentally daft, and I agree the board aren't solely responsible for the specific situation we're in now, but people are fully entitled to moan about the board.

You can't come on here with your caps lock and tell all of TW they're dickheads. Have some respect. There are many differing opinions on here, and there are ways of disagreeing.

Jerome Shields
49 Posted 07/01/2023 at 00:01:40
Frank Lampard has introduced a fines system and player leadership group at Everton to maintain standards that he believes will help the team to progress.

The Everton manager had a fines system at his previous club, Chelsea, that included a £20,000 punishment for being late for training and £10,000 for not reporting an illness or injury before a day off, but did not implement it at Goodison Park last season as the team fought relegation.

Lampard, whose team travel to Newcastle on Wednesday following two successive defeats, has also created a player leadership group to enforce standards and address any dressing-room issues at source.

"I think in modern management some of the things that challenge you should be dealt with by the players before they reach you, and when you have a group of good lads who want to do the right thing, they can deal with a small issue in the dressing room or a small thing about how we prepare for games.” – Lampard

The Guardian – 19 October 2022

Only just came across this, but it has made me think about Frank's management.

John Moore
50 Posted 08/01/2023 at 00:09:25
We haven't done anything since we got rid of The Toffee Lady.
Barry Hesketh
51 Posted 08/01/2023 at 00:38:07
John @51

Nor since St Luke's Church was hidden from view?

Although, I'm uncertain about how long it is since the Church was a prominent feature of the stadium.

Derek Knox
52 Posted 08/01/2023 at 01:00:37
John @ 51,

"We haven't done anything since we got rid of The Toffee Lady."

Or while Kenwright has been involved, probably his idea to get rid of The Toffee Lady! Not giving free sweets away to this lot. The excuse was, if I remember, on Health and Safety Reasons.

The city's Hospital Wards were filling up with Everton matchgoers who had suffered serious injury by virtue of those Toffee Missiles! Think Darren Hind was one such casualty, and he's never been the same since. 😜🤔


Ashley Roberts
53 Posted 08/01/2023 at 01:57:41
I am a firm believer that it does not matter who the manager of Everton is, the problem is we have the worst squad in the Premier League.

Yes, that has come from wasting money and buying crap players at best. I don't think Pep could do anything with the squad we have. Other than Pickford, and maybe Coady, the rest are reasonable Championship players at best.

It seems as though we have no money to buy anybody of value in January and we are looking to bring in loan players that are bench warmers at best. We need a quality attacking midfielder and a goal scorer at a minimum.

It is going to be a long second half of the season. I am for sticking with Frank at the moment as, unless we can entice Tuchel, I do not think anybody will do any better with the players we currently have.

Dyche is definitely not the answer.

Jim Bennings
55 Posted 08/01/2023 at 07:16:58
If Tuchel was sacked at Chelsea, working with supremely talented players compared to ours, it's hard to imagine him even considering the Everton job.

Danny Baily
56 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:01:41
This focus on the board is not helping with our current situation.

The only lever we have available to pull which could possibly have the desired effect (results on the pitch) in the immediate term is changing the manager.

I am really angry about the situation. It doesn't seem to have dawned on people that we're already relegated in all likelihood. Look at the fixtures. We need a drastic upturn in fortunes, not to show spirit in defeat.

Lampard should have gone on Boxing Day. When we've spent several seasons in the Championship, with no MotD, no Radio 5 Live coverage, no media coverage, we'll look back on this time and wonder why we didn't do everything we could to save the club.

We'll wonder why we were banging on about Kenwright and the Board as though they were some kind of pantomime villains.

There's still time to act. Lampard should not be at the helm for the Southampton game. If he is, then the matter of relegation will be well and truly settled.

Gary Johnson
57 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:13:23
Danny - I said on another thread yesterday that it was the fans that got Rafa, Sam and Silva sacked. As soon as the singing started the chop came.

At the moment, the board believe they chose Lampard for the fans, and can see most anger is at the board, so they do not feel sacking Lampard will deflect or stop the anger. In fact, they fear it could inflame it.

The mistake they are making is thinking it won't inflame further keeping him. We're going to lose points in the next two against improving Southampton and West Ham (look at their results and performances yesterday). At that point, we will be bottom and the window will be shut.

I don't believe we are relegated yet… but we will effectively be in 2 weeks. Unless our Fans turn on Lampard en masse (and I doubt it), then we will seal our own doom. It is now almost inevitable.

Danny Baily
58 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:27:05
Gary 58, agreed. This is why I find the 'Sack the Board' narrative so frustrating.

We've secured record sponsorship deals, we have a new stadium well underway, we backed the manager (which we as fans insisted upon appointing) in the transfer window, and yet our attention is on the board. It doesn't make sense.

Looking forward, our problems are on the field.

Danny O’Neill
59 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:36:22
Danny B @57 and Gary @58. Both very good posts and equally good discussion from different perspectives and angles.

I watched a BBC report on a team that went to film footage of the wreck of the Titanic very early this morning. For relevance, stay with me.

There is an obvious need to address the immediate concern and avoid the iceberg before we sink. But we're not out of the game just yet and can turn this ship around.

However, the deep-rooted problems that have plagued this club, which belongs up there with the best, should not be ignored and need addressing. That is where the focus is on the board. Not for the next few months, more thinking about where we want to be in 3 to 5 years time.

So yes, there's a here-and-now tactical problem to fix. But there is a strategic one that needs addressing. Otherwise, we'll just keep going through this cycle of managers and viewing mid-table Premier League survival as success.

"Accepting our lot" springs to mind. Not for me.

Tony Everan
60 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:38:27
Fair and reasonable posts above. In the club's best interests, we have to split this crisis into the two massive problems:

1. Short-Term

2. Long-Term

The short-term one is getting a manager in who is experienced and can organise the team better in every way. The long-term one is addressing the serious lack of professionalism in our boardroom by completely overhauling it. The long-term issue can wait until May when we are safe.

It's not just the lack of goals now that is killing us, our defence has progressively got worse too. It's a potent cocktail that needs to be urgently addressed.

These stats this morning are indicators that we are in serious trouble. We need to change the manager to someone with proper experience who can organise, to give us a fighting chance of survival. Every day Mr Moshiri and our board dither about it is another nail in Everton's coffin.

“Many fans don't think the defense is that bad. 19th in xGA (by. 01), 20th in shots against (by a lot), 20th in aerial win rate, 20th in touches in the PA against, etc.

It's possibly the worst defensive record and probably the worst backline in the Premier League.”

Mal van Schaick
61 Posted 08/01/2023 at 08:40:58
The next few weeks are going to be crucial in our fight to stay in the Premier League. I definitely think that the owner, chairman and manager should address the players and emphasise our current position, remind them of our club history, and demand improvements from them.

The signing of a recognised goal scorer or two, plus other ins and outs, will define the rest of the season or else for me. It doesn't bode well for our Premier League status.

Tony Everan
62 Posted 08/01/2023 at 09:00:57
* I want to add that I think the comment made that we have “probably the worst back line in the Premier League “ is not right at all.

I think we have decent defensive players who can be improved as a unit by a more experienced football manager.

Scott Robinson
63 Posted 08/01/2023 at 09:13:34
Gary @ 58, you are absolutely right. The irony is that the 'fans' have contributed to the current situation, demanding the sacking of managers upon any downturn.

I remember seeing footage of a fan demanding Silva's head after the Norwich defeat.

Is Allardyce really a bad manager? Is Silva really a bad manager? And as for Mr Benitez…

Tony Abrahams
64 Posted 08/01/2023 at 09:45:03
I liked Silva, and think he would have been a successful Everton manager, only for his DOF, who got it badly wrong at the end of Marco's first up-and-down season. A lot of fans didn't want him, his team couldn't defend set-pieces, but we finished with 8 clean sheets in our last 11 games that season, and never replaced the defender who was enabling us to play a higher line.

Brands got unlucky with Gbamin but more homework would have confirmed that Delph's body could no longer stand the rigmarole of a full season in the Premier League, and whilst he needed an experienced front man, Brands was already driving us down a different street, imo.

I thought Silva's head went after this because it was impossible to play a higher line with what we had left and we also lost Gueye's energy; his team just gradually fell to pieces.

That Norwich game, I'd forgotten about that, Scott, and although Brighton was bad the other night, at least they can play. That Norwich game was genuinely one of the worst, most bereft-of-ideas performances I've ever witnessed at Goodison, and I've seen some bad ones down the years.

Christopher Timmins
65 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:21:26
Silva is showing his worth at Fulham, his first job where he will be in situ for more than two full seasons since he came to the UK.

We will really see how good he is next season, as the second season can be the one that catches newly promoted teams out.

He was badly let down by our club in the summer transfer window before the start of his second seasonat Everton. Zuma and Gana left and were replaced by Sibide and Gbamin. We also acquired the kid from Italy which proved to be a disaster and got Iwobi instead of Zaha.

Bad appointments at ownership, board, managerial and DoF levels since Moyes left – just mistake after mistake during that period.

Next Saturday, 6 of the Bottom 8 play each other... the third-from-bottom team need to be out of the Bottom 3 this time next week!

Stu Darlington
66 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:27:04
The immediate problem facing the club is Premier League survival. That is absolutely fundamental to our future. The big question is how to achieve it?

Lampard has never convinced me that he has the skill set necessary to take the club to the next level and we are arguably in a worse situation today than when he took over 12 months ago.

That said, to sack him now and rely on this Board to appoint a manager capable of achieving our survival seems to me to be a desperate last throw of the dice. No guarantees, expensive, and possibly no end product.

To me, therefore, I think the only slim chance we have of survival is to acquire players good enough to score goals and/or create chances for others.

Players good enough to do this in this transfer window will be in demand by other clubs, and are unlikely to view Everton as their next career move.

So we are down to Robert and Sam's catalogues of young, inexpensive players, many from overseas leagues. Whichever way you slice it, a lottery!

Not a happy situation – and possibly me being too pessimistic – but that's the way I see it playing out.

Matt Henderson
67 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:43:27
The Board had to go ASAP! The longer they are in, then the more damage they will do. Even if we survive this season, we will be relegated in upcoming seasons as they've proven they have no idea how to run things.

We have been in steady decline for years, regardless of the manager. We are not getting better under this Board! But we aren't going to be able to remove them in a hurry – that is the issue.

So I'm starting to agree with the above on short-term aims; I'm thinking that Frank may have to go as he is one of the problems and there is no discernible improvement in performance but, let's face it, we can't trust this Board to get a replacement right, can we?

I note Roberto has reached a “verbal” agreement to take on Portugal that, at this stage, would not be legally binding. Is it wrong of me to think this “verbal” agreement has been reached (rather than signing a contract) and has been leaked to the press to let Everton know (or give Bill a chance to use it as leverage to convince Moshri) that, if they want Roberto, they should move soon before he signs an actual contract and they'd have to pay compensation?

It would be just like us to fire someone, see him go on to only fail elsewhere, and get him back because he once had a good run of games 7 years ago, whilst all evidence since suggests we were right to fire him.

That's exactly how we recruit:– Dele, McNeil, Allan, Gomes etc. They performed well at times in their career and then have seasons of failure and we step in to take them off their teams' hands when they've played poorly for a season or three. No other teams are coming in to buy our failures!

Matt Henderson
68 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:51:51
Stu @67,

I agree wholeheartedly but the shit show we are in means, as you say, we are reliant on an incompetent board to determine another management appointment.

But we'd also be reliant on them to purchase the new players you rightly say we need… and they've also proved they can't do that either.

Based on the more public decision-making we see (manager, player, DoF appointments), it is not hard to think we must have hired incapable people right throughout the Club (Academy, commercial, finance,/sports science divisions etc. ) due to the Board's inadequacies.

We probably have one of the worst tea ladies in the Premier League also — and she was hired because she's one of Bill's allies rather than being able to make a good cuppa.

Brian Murray
69 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:57:17
The continued support or indifference or ignorance of the way the club is run has now been joined by our Tricky Trev.

I don't know if he's just happy with the free tickets and hospitality or it's because he's not from here so can't or won't look at the club as a whole.

There again, Southall is not a scouser but he's clued up to what we are really about.

We are witnessing now every make-do managerial appointment since 1992. Every botched or second-rate sponsorship and marketing deal, every "jobs for the boys" posting, and now in full technicolour our demise which we have pushed and pushed for the above reasons.

It's not about Kenwright-bashing for the sake of it as we don't care about him personally. Now we are hoping Demarai Gray can be our new Richarlison, so we live and stand still for another day…

70 Posted 08/01/2023 at 10:58:49
Matt #68,

I had similar thoughts when I saw that the Martinez verbal agreement with Portugal had been leaked to the press, A last chance "come and get me" plea to Everton from Roberto?

If it is... I hope it fails!

Mark Murphy
71 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:08:59
“Not a scouser but he gets us”

Neither am I – born and raised 12 miles from Goodison and supported the Blues for over 50 years – and I still get this crap at virtually every match. It's a good job I'm not sensitive!

Raymond Fox
72 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:10:19
So a Belgium manager or maybe the next manager of Portugal not good enough for us!

There's 3 massive relegation 6-pointers on Saturday, our Premier League position could look much better… or, on the other hand, much worse!!

Fran Mitchell
73 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:22:28
Hindsight is a wonderful thing,.

Yes, had Silva got a quality replacement for Zouma (or in fact signed Zouma), had he signed a quality winger with the £30M wasted on Iwobi, and got a decent striker with the £25M wasted on Kean, and a half decent defensive midfielder for the £25M wasted on Gbamin, then maybe he'd have kept his job and maybe we wouldn't be in the current predicament.

The Koeman transfer window of Bolasie, Sigurdsson, Vlasic, Klaassen, Rooney, Keane, and Pickford was a disaster in that it was an opportunity to take a club from 8th or 7th to higher, but resulted in turning us to mid-table also-rans. But at least we got profit on Vlasic, some money back for Klaassen, and Pickford a success. Sigurdsson was never worth the fee, but he maintained his pre-Everton form of 10 odd goals a season from midfield. It was a huge wasted opportunity, but it was not terminal.

Silva's window, however, absolutely trashed the team and turned us into lower-table fodder, was a huge splurge on players who made the team considerably worse, and we haven't been able to spend money on any serious level since.

Oliver Molloy
74 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:30:23
Surely Lampard's next game will determine his fate; lose or draw and he's gone – and then who knows!

As many have said, he's a nice guy and says the right things, but it all means nothing if he can't win – no more "We played well" and hard luck stories is going to cut it.

Lampard simply must prove he is capable of winning a fucking game at home.

Anyone else think the VAR is slowly killing football?

Gary Johnson
75 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:41:09
Tony @ 61 - that is an awesome post mate. Spot on.

We've martyred Coady and Tarkowski for some utterly nuts reason and yet I can't see why. They're less prone to utter howlers, I guess, but stats and looking with an open mind show different. I think they're sitting so deep that they're hurting us both ends.

Unfortunately, too many are focused on 2. Long-Term. I agree with @DannyO that this cannot be dropped as a major issue but, if we don't address the immediate issues, the long-term strategy will be a very, very different one. We are running out of time to have options.

Danny O’Neill
76 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:45:32
Brian won't mean it like that, Mark.

At a match last season, I met his friend and his son, a young lad from Gloucester attending his first Everton match. It was the Palace home game so, although I didn't see them after, I bet his eyes were wide open and the poor soul is now hooked. I think it was Brian's friend. Maybe it was just someone we bumped into in the Winslow!!

Everton is a global community – hopefully it can become more widespread. The matchday fanbase is largely (but not exclusively) Merseyside, North-West and North Wales based. But in that context, travelling from London, I'd have to rule myself out of that. I probably want my cake and be able to eat it. I'd never like us to turn into a Liverpool or Man Utd, but we need to expand the brand to compete.

Oliver - not me. We just have the same problem transferred. Incompetent officials, regardless of whether they are on the pitch or not. The VAR should be a mechanism to fix decision-making. How Liverpool are still in the FA Cup is beyond me.

Gary Johnson
77 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:45:56
Scott @ 64,

I think fans have been spot-on demanding more and that managers not delivering needed to go. Sam's football would have turned us into Stoke 2.0, Benitez was a power-hungry bellend who'd have recked us even more… The only one I agree with you on is Silva, who should have got more time and support.

Right now, I wish the fans would turn on Frank. I suspect they will soon, but by then it'll be too late. There are much bigger problems, but fixing them won't fix the current situation. A hard arse like Dyche with Duncan back as Number 2 could.

Rob Halligan
78 Posted 08/01/2023 at 11:47:52
Gary #58.

Exactly how are Southampton improving? Is it because they won an FA Cup game? They had lost five on the bounce, including a defeat at home to Forest, before yesterday.

I didn't see any of their game yesterday so don't know how good, bad or indifferent Crystal Palace were, or what their team was, but Southampton winning that doesn't mean they are improving.

Going by the same logic, we were improving after the Man City game, we were much improved on Friday night after the Brighton debacle, while it seems that Newcastle are about to go on a downward spiral after losing to League One Sheffield Wednesday.

We'll see how much Southampton are improving after Man City turn them over in the Carabao Cup in midweek.

Stu Darlington
79 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:05:05
Matt @69,

I agree with your comments about the Board and am sure we have incompetent sycophants hired throughout the club.
Their removal and replacement however is “next season's” problem and quite frankly is beyond the power of supporters to achieve.

As I said, our immediate problem is survival but relying on this Board to make the right decisions necessary to achieve this is cloud cuckoo land. We can only hope!

Good job I drink coffee (and Guinness occasionally, purely for medicinal purposes of course!)

Gary Johnson
80 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:07:38
Rob @ 79,

Maybe try watching the game then before calling out my post with yer weird tantrum.

Palace is not an easy place to go in the cup (how'd Grey Frankie do last year?).

We drew against City, they won yesterday. We've managed to win only 3 times this season. Next week will indeed show us how far we've come and they've come. I'm expecting a Burnley-like game from last season.

Rob Halligan
81 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:18:42
Ah well, Gary, in that case Southampton must be improving after beating the mighty Crystal Palace.

Same as West Ham, another team who had lost five on the bounce prior to yesterday.

Gary Johnson
82 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:24:35

If you can't understand that turning losses into wins equates to “improving” then I'm at a loss to explain anything further to you…

It's up there with the single strangest lines I've seen on here, or elsewhere. Hats off to you.

Rob Halligan
83 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:29:05
Ah well, Gary, I'll leave you to your explanation of improving.

I'd rather think a draw at Man City in a Premier League game is better than a win in a cup game at Crystal Palace as the better result.

But like I said earlier, Southampton will be firmly put back in their place when Man City turn them over in midweek. If you think Southampton are improving, then hats off to you as well!

Gary Johnson
84 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:31:14

If you think drawing is better than winning, and getting knocked out the cup before deckies are in the loft is a sign for optimism, more fool you. Keeping aiming high, little man.

Danny O’Neill
85 Posted 08/01/2023 at 12:52:28
I wouldn't call Rob a 'little man', Gary. I'd also be cautious of suggesting he should watch the game. He watches all of them. At great cost and expenditure of many miles on the road.

That obviously doesn't entitle him more than any supporter, but to suggest he doesn't watch the game is a bit wide of the mark.

I guess Newcastle must be regressing after being defeated by a League One team?

It's the FA Cup. It happens. It always has on the day.

We put in a good performance and were unlucky not to at least get a replay on Friday.

Let's see how we get on against Southampton before judging their alledged improvement based on a narrow win against Palace in the FA Cup.

Ours was a narrow lossa but for that penalty, at Old Trafford against Manchester United.

West Ham. Same points as us, separated only by one goal. Two very important fixtures to look forward to.

Eddie Dunn
86 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:00:09
Just watched an interesting video on YouTube by a guy called Laurence McKenna. He talks about Lampard and his work at Derby and Chelsea and his methods, his strengths and weaknesses. An interesting watch from someone outside of the area.

He basically suggests that Lampard seems to become embroiled in the politics wherever he is. He suggests that Lampard needs to pursue his career somewhere else.

Dave Abrahams
87 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:04:03
Peter (46),

Dele our possible saviour? If he takes a dip in the waters at Lourdes on his way home, then it's possible!!

John Raftery
88 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:35:28
I have heard nothing from Lampard to suggest he has become embroiled in the politics at Everton. Indeed his recent comment that his job is to coach the players he has got suggests the opposite: he is steering well clear of any internal politics. Whether or not that is a good thing is a moot point.

As regards the protests against the board, fans understandably will vent their frustration on the nearest target. In the first half of last season, the main target was Benitez who had spent the grand sum of £1.7M on transfer fees in the summer of 2021 with many believing that, if only we had another manager, we had enough quality players to improve our results.

Having seen Benitez exit, the fans voiced strong support for Super Frank who was duly elected after a bizarre interview process with the board. He was probably welcomed more warmly than any manager since Joe Royle.

Unsurprisingly, after that show of support, any calls now for Lampard to go are muted, restricted to online comments rather than vocal protests at matches. The primary target now is the board.

I repeat the question I have asked previously. Getting rid of the board, much like getting rid of managers, is not a solution. The question is: Who replaces them?

Moreover, even if it happened over the next few months, will a board upheaval help anyone on the playing side of the club at a time when their focus needs to be entirely on achieving the minimum of 24 points we need to survive in the Premier League?

Sean Kelly
89 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:45:32
Peter #46,

Dele Alli… more like comical Alli. He can't rescue himself or his career – let alone us. More rubbish signed by Kenwright.

Gary Johnson
90 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:47:49
Danny @ 86 - you strike me as a wise fella, so maybe try reading the posts a bit more too.

My point about Big Rob not watching the game was relating to the Southampton match. He decided to attack my post, then in his own words admitted to not actually watching them. He is therefore challenging the point based on assumption alone.

If he'd have watched them, then I'd maybe view it as simply an alternative view. Instead, it's just optimistic pettiness, and anyone who's that petty is a little man in my view.

Gary Johnson
91 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:53:43
And at risk of being oxymoronic about pettiness: conceding 3 goals isn't narrow. The penalty was a penalty, and is as much a goal as any other goal. Godfrey stuck a leg out and missed the ball...

We've lost 7-2 in last two games. Appreciating that some want hope, but attacking me for daring to say other clubs look like they're improving is a strange way of getting hope.

Barry Hesketh
92 Posted 08/01/2023 at 13:57:24
John @89,

None of us has the wisdom or the ability to see what the future holds. Keep Frank and we survive, hurrah for stability and patience. Sack Frank and appoint AN Other and we survive, hurrah for decisive action.

Keep Frank and get relegated, Boo for lack of action. Appoint AN Other and get relegated, Boo for impatience and knee-jerk reactions.

On your point about the board, I agree that no amount of fan protests will make the owner or the board move in a particular direction. However, if Moshiri – even though he is obviously a significant part of the problem – takes note of the levels of dissatisfaction, he may look again at how the club is set-up, but I wouldn't hold my breath.

The only way the club can move forward at executive level is if Moshiri sells 100% of the club to new owners, it doesn't feel as if that's what he wants, so we might be stuck in limbo for a couple of years more.

Tony Hill
93 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:08:52
Barry @93, correct. No-one has the answer because there isn't one or, at least, not one about which any of us can be remotely confident.

We're shouting and flailing about because we're scared, and those of us who recommend staying calm and holding tight are also speculating.

Sometimes you just have to close your eyes and hope that events turn in your favour. If you want to make God laugh, show him your plans.

Ed Prytherch
94 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:18:13
It is hard to assign responsibility for signing or selling any particular player as there have always been several people pulling the strings at the same time and that is a root of the problem.
Tony Abrahams
95 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:28:25
Good points John R, but I still believe the protests have got to grow and grow if need be. Moshiri doesn't want Everton
and he knows that the people who he has left behind to run the club are not really wanted by around 60-70% of the fanbase.

We will see what develops this week. A win against Southampton and it's anyone's guess how many people will stay behind to protest but, if Everton don't win, then I'd expect at least half the stadium will stay behind.

If 20,000 Evertonians stay behind and start protesting, then I believe the silent Moshiri will have to do something.

I can understand the worry that he might sell to anyone but a small minority of Evertonians have already defeated the millionaire lawyers of Everton and the billionaire lawyers of Tesco, in court, and it's surprising how much dirt can be dug-up by people who feel they have been wronged.

Not really our style, I know, but sometimes things change when certain people have taken the piss for way too long and I'm sure that even Bill Kenwright must be beginning to understand this right now.

It's all about how the pressure is going to be applied and, if Bill Kenwright wilts, then Moshiri might just wilt right behind him. Things might suddenly move quicker, with the Americans, who are allegedly very serious about purchasing Everton.

Everton FC are quite simply rudderless right now, and the present regime seem to have completely gone missing.

Ian Bennett
96 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:31:53
I don't think Frank is capable of keeping us up. I don't watch the team and think we have the ability to grind out results again and again. I don't see a man capable of picking up another 25 points from 20 games with his random tactics, poor substitutions and spinless performances.

Yes, they got a point at City where you have to raise your game. But can I see that level of performance every week? No, I don't thunk so.

Two starters are out the team for the next 3-6 weeks on a period we've got to get points. That's a huge problem to ask Coleman to play those level of games – whilst Iwobi has a good injury record others don't (more Tom Davies and Co...)

Our options are hugely limited. We've no money, and any decent player isn't going to be interested in joining this shit tip in a transfer window where decent deals are scant.

Based on that, we've got to use what we've got. That means batten down the hatches and go direct. Frank isn't the man for that.

This is the here and now. The board are in for a battering, huge financial losses and civil war. A Southampton defeat could see the most ugly scenes imaginable. The fan base has been conservative, patient, and supportive in incredibly trying times.

Let's be honest, without the new Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock, the board would have been chased out of town already.

Rob Halligan
97 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:41:05
Gary, I didn't attack your post, as you say, I merely asked how can Southampton be improving just because they won a cup game?

I bet you any money their fans would swap that win yesterday for a league win. An improvement is going unbeaten for five or six games, not one.

They beat Lincoln the other week in the Carabao Cup, fortunately I've read, and yes, it's another game I never saw. After that game, their fans were hammering the manager, the players for their performance, even their own board for appointing Nathan Jones.

Did they show any signs of improvement after that game? No, they went and lost to Brighton, Fulham and Forest. I watched that Forest game and, believe me, they were very very poor.

One swallow doesn't make a summer… one win is not a sign of improvement.

Oliver Molloy
98 Posted 08/01/2023 at 14:53:53

Let's hope they are very very poor next game then, and sorry, I don't think you can argue against this – that, for us at least, one win would indeed be an improvement!

Rob Halligan
99 Posted 08/01/2023 at 15:01:57
Oliver, a win for us would be seen by most on here as “Merely papering over the cracks”, while a win for Southampton is seen as improvement.

And out of the two games I mentioned above, us drawing at Man City in a league game, and Southampton winning at Palace in a cup game, I know which result I would have taken prior to the games being played.

Oliver Molloy
100 Posted 08/01/2023 at 15:53:14
"A win for us would be seen by most on here as merely papering over the cracks"

I would say that is fairly accurate, you ever wonder why, I'm sure you've been there!

You seem to be dismissing Southampton, Rob. I don't know where you are getting your confidence from – although I do hope you are right.

Gary Johnson
101 Posted 08/01/2023 at 15:58:24
Rob - wanna show in the dictionary where the word 'improving' is defined as “must win 5 in a row cos that's what Rob said”? 🤣

They won a game, after losing a few. That's improvement.

They've already signed a new player in Orsic who scored in the World Cup 3rd place playoff and has nearly better than 1 goal in 2 for Zagreb this year. That's improvement.

They have strong transfer links to 2-3 others already, and are expected to add a striker this week. That's improvement.

Whilst time will tell how much improvement they are making, it takes a special level of weirdness to think our Alamo defending at Man City (a game where they had 74% possession and 16 shots to 2) is somehow “more impressive” than an away cup win and adding new international goalscoring players.

Rob Halligan
102 Posted 08/01/2023 at 16:07:18
Gary, where did I say “Must win five in a row”?

And your silly emoji does indeed make you look silly. You heavily criticised a fellow poster a week or two ago because he used emojis on his post, something which you had a go at him at.

I'm in a WhatsApp group with that poster, and I actually agreed with you at the time on our chat group. Wish I hadn't bothered now.

Anyway, I've had enough of you, so if you think Southampton are improving, then jolly good, I'm made up for you.

Colin Glassar
103 Posted 08/01/2023 at 16:15:55
At least we got an easy draw in the next round of the FA Cup.
Gary Johnson
104 Posted 08/01/2023 at 16:52:45
Rob, in your own words “An improvement is going unbeaten for FIVE or SIX games, not one”. Okay, so we can be pedantic and argue that unbeaten is not the same as winning, but once again show me any formal definition of the word that shows that to qualify as improving equates to going five or six games unbeaten?

In relation to your emoji post, fair play. I'm embarrassed that I added it, just flabbergasted at the doubling down on “well, I never watched it… but not as good as our draw at City” stuff you posted.

We all make mistakes, it takes a man to admit to them. Unlike you, I'll be that man here. My bad.

Rob Halligan
105 Posted 08/01/2023 at 17:26:47
Gary, I've admitted many times in the past that I've been wrong about things. I've apologised far too many times to other posters as well as Michael Kenrick and Lyndon.

If you want me to admit I'm wrong about Southampton not improving just because I never saw their game yesterday, then I will. But, in my opinion, I don't think an improvement in form can be garnished from a cup win. It might well give them confidence, having ended a losing streak, but for me, it's certainly not an indication of an improvement.

They have lost six league games on the bounce from the last seven games, drawing the other. Palace fans on the BBC HYS are saying they were unlucky, but again I don't know.

Watching Man City at the moment tearing Chelsea to shreds, will Southampton fancy their chances in midweek in the Carabao Cup? Will a heavy defeat blow what little confidence they got from yesterday out of the water? Will their new found improvement in form be smashed to bits? I suspect it will!

I bet if you ask any neutral who had the better result out of us getting a draw at Man City, or Southampton winning a cup game at Palace, I guess most would go for our result.

For me, a win can give a team confidence, but does not show an improvement in form. As I said, any team needs to go on an unbeaten run, hopefully winning a few on the way, to show an improvement.

So yeah, I'll be man enough to admit I was wrong about you saying Southampton are improving, simply because you saw the game to form an opinion, and I never.

Danny O’Neill
106 Posted 08/01/2023 at 17:49:21
Rob, don't you ever apologise for yor views on Everton.

No-one should.

I see Chelsea are improving under Potter if we consider a 3rd round FA Cup Round match a measure of progress.

Tony Abrahams
107 Posted 08/01/2023 at 17:52:12
I'm not saying that Potter is a Brian Clough but, once he gets his payoff, I think he will be better going to a League One club to try and build another club up?
Gary Johnson
108 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:15:44

It's a sad day when two blues argue over something as petty as we have here. It's a tetchy time for us all. Let's just move on and get behind the blues. We need it and they need it. Enjoy what's left of your weekend.

Gary Johnson
109 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:23:43

Buy your mate a pint instead of the online coat-on-a-puddle stuff.

Southampton won, Chelsea lost. The parallel's just bizarre.

Rob Halligan
110 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:24:55
Agree Gary. 👍👍 (Sorry about the emoji’s).
Danny O’Neill
111 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:32:11
We will Gary. As we always do. I see Villa are on the rise too!!!
Tony Heron
112 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:32:18
Watching Chelsea and Man City. I've seen fewer back-passes in a Rugby game!

Modern-day football? Not for me.

Gary Johnson
113 Posted 08/01/2023 at 18:47:27
Thanks, Rob 🤣 < - the last one.

Danny, stop being bitchy. Move on… I'm sure Orsic will be shit in real world, and we'll beat them with Franks bold 4-3-3 on Saturday, using the same failures and Davies or Doucouré in for the only man who's creating chances for us.

How can we possibly compare their level of improvement with ours when we can throw Villa's loss in the mix?

Danny O’Neill
114 Posted 08/01/2023 at 19:03:39
The wife and inlaws are Villa supporters as well as a mix of Wolves and oddly Midland Kopites, Gary.

I follow them regularly and have a soft spot for them due to family connections.

Villa that is. Not Lucifers Children.

Rob Halligan
115 Posted 09/01/2023 at 17:13:43
I’ve just watched the whole 90 minutes of the game last Friday, and I actually thought we played quite well. There were at least four opportunities in the first half where we got into promising positions just outside the Man Utd penalty area, only for the final pass to let us down badly. Onana can be so good one minute, and then so infuriating the next. As with a lot of our players, they can play a decent pass one minute, and a really poor pass the next, but Onana seems to stick out more than most. I have to also add that Fernandes was very lucky to get away with only a yellow card for that snide challenge on Onana’s Achilles heel. That could have caused Onana serious injury.

Second half was pretty much the same as the first, we can look good up until the final third of the pitch. Yet again we had a couple of promising attacks only to be let down by the final ball again. Same as at Man City last week, our defence stood firm against Man Utd’s attack, restricting them to basically long range free kicks, and one long range shot from Rashford in the first half which Pickford pushed away. Both our full backs were giving good support to the midfield and attack, with both of them even being in the opposition penalty area attacking balls. Which makes you wonder, why didn’t Lampard play the same formation against Brighton, only replacing Ben Godfrey who was knackered from the Man City game with either Holgate, Keane or Mina, or if not one of them, pushing Seamus Coleman into a back three? I still maintain if we can get that creative midfielder, along with another striker in this window, we will pull away from the bottom, but it’s imperative we also keep DCL fit.

Final word on the disallowed goal. VAR was brought in to get all the decisions right, to rectify clear and obvious errors by the on field officials. That goal was not a clear and obvious offside, how could it be when it’s almost impossible to the naked eye to disallow it, hence the linesman doesn’t raise his flag. To me the solution is this……….any goal such as ours last Friday, where the offside is literally only millimetres, should stand. By all means let VAR have a look for maybe a potential foul in the lead up to the goal, but if the linesman doesn’t flag for offside, then let the goal stand.If, however, a goal is “scored” but then a flag is raised, then fair enough, let VAR have a look, and decide either way, goal or no goal.Too many teams are getting penalised for the sake of a few millimetres. Years ago, there was a call for more goals in a game, yet this is now being taken away by VAR. Already this season, we’ve been penalised by VAR for disallowing goals against the RS and Leeds, two goals which were not seen as offside by the linesman, but were literally only millimetres according to VAR. Those lost four points could be so crucial to us come the end of the season, and to be relegated for the sake of about a combined ten millimetres doesn’t seem right.

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