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Everton Past Player Profile

Gareth Farrelly  FACTS
Born Dublin (Eire), 28 August 1975
Height 6' - 1" (185 cm)
Joined Everton from Aston Villa in July 1997 (700,000*)
Debut v Crystal Palace (h) on 9 August 1997
Left Everton for Bolton Wanderers in December 1999 (300,000)
Finale v Oxford (h), 22 September 1999
Honours U-21 Caps for Eire; 3 full international caps for Eire
Seasons Club Apps Gls
1995-1997 Aston Villa 2 (6) + 0 (1) 0
1996-1997 Rotherham (on loan) 9 (1) 2
1999-2000 Bolton Wanderers (on loan) 4 1

* Fee set by Tribunal: rises by 100,000 after 10, and again after 40 appearances, plus a 20% sell-on clause

  • A playmaker
  • Comfortable on the ball
  • Good passing
  • Strong and determined
  • Not a great tackler
  • Still developing
  • Wild shooting skills
  • Needs to score more

Mick McCarthy the Ireland Manager had this to say about young Gareth about the time he signed for the Blues:

"He is a very talented player. I think Villa offered him quite a lucrative contract to stay and he has left to play first team football which is a statement of his ambitions.

"He's been unlucky because with Andy Townsend playing well he's just not had a run at club or international level yet, but Howard was right when he said he was bursting for a chance to prove himself.

"When he has played in Villa's first team he has played well, so there is no reason why he couldn't play in the Premiership next season and be a good player. He is only a young lad and the only way you become the finished product is by stringing some matches together.

"I think it will be a good move for him, but that's as long as he is playing in the first team. There is no point moving from one Premiership reserve side to another."

McCarthy gave him his international debut in America last summer:

"He operated on the left side of a central three in midfield during that tournament and did very well. Gareth's a playmaker and he likes to get on the ball all the time. He is a good passer, long or short, is quick and will get up and down the pitch all day.

"He isn't a tackler like Barry Horne, but he will stick his foot in. He's also a terrific finisher and first class on the training pitches, and because of that I'd like to see him improve his goalscoring ratio.

"Sometimes you can look to get on the ball for the sake of it, and I'd like Gareth to move into the penalty area more because he would do some damage.

"The last time I saw him he was playing for Eire Under-21s against Rumania and was exceptional. I wouldn't have swapped him for anybody else on the pitch that day. It is up to Gareth how far he goes in the game because everything is in place. If Everton get the best out of him, then they will have got themselves some player."

Based on his early league games with Everton, Farrelly came over as a powerful and determined player capable of surging runs along the centre / left half of the field, although the final ball was often lacking.  He's also quite prepared to shoot from long range with a varying degree of accuracy.

This last attribute became something of a running joke by the end of his first season, but Evertonians where to be eternally thankful that one of Gareth's rockets finally hit the net, after just 6 minutes of the critical home match against Coventry City.  Will this uninspiring player last the hotter pace under Walter Smith?   The answer seems to be a resounding "No".  One measly sub appearance early on in the season, and that was it!  Wally obviously likes to play his own mediocre midfielders in preference to those purchased by Mr Kendall.

To confirm that his future lay elsewhere, Gareth was placed on the transfer list at the end of the 1998-99 season, but there was little or no interest in him and he started the new season as captain of Everton Reserves.  He did get one less-than memorable senior run-out, as part of Walter Smith's thin-squad demonstration in the farcical League Cup tie against Oxford United, before he was eventually farmed out on loan to Bolton Wanderers for a two-month loan in mid-November 1999 – and scoring on his debut against Sheffield United!

In December 1999, the loan deal was converted to a permanent move as Everton accepted a cut-price fee of around 300,000 for the out-of-favour midfielder who only got on the field twice during Walter Smith's reign.  Few people thought he was up to much under Howard Kendall, so we should not question the cannie Scot's judgement in this case.

Season Squad
1997-98 17 18 (8) 1 2 (-) 1 20 (8) 2
1998-99 17 - (1) - - (-) - - (1) -
1999-2k 30 - (-) - 1 (-) - 1 (-) -

Totals: 18 (9) 1 3 (-) 1 21 (9) 2

Cup Statistics include all other non-league senior matches, as counted by Everton FC in the Matchday Programme

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Marko Poutiainen and Michael Kenrick 1999

Last update: 21 December 1999

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