South African ruled out of the season openerSteven Pienaar has suffered a hamstring injury and will miss the rest of the pre-season programme and the start of the season, Roberto Martinez has confirmed.
The veteran midfielder suffered the injury in training on Saturday and will be further assessed by the club's medical team in the coming days to determine the severity of the damage.
Pienaar had been hoping for better luck with injuries after he made just 11 appearances last season because of a succession of injury problems.
His unique skills made him a key player in Martinez's squad but he has now been ruled out of the season opener against Watford on 8th August.
Reader Comments (70)
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1 Posted 26/07/2015 at 15:35:59
What really is the point in blind hope on a player much like Gibson that will never offer anything like they once did?
2 Posted 26/07/2015 at 15:50:21
3 Posted 26/07/2015 at 15:52:40
4 Posted 26/07/2015 at 15:53:15
5 Posted 26/07/2015 at 15:56:47
In Steven Pienaar's case its one injury after the other. I believe we should keep hold of him but we can't have another season of hoping that Ross, Naisy, Ossie or Kone will be able to do a job there!
6 Posted 26/07/2015 at 16:02:44
7 Posted 26/07/2015 at 16:06:43
8 Posted 26/07/2015 at 16:05:46
9 Posted 26/07/2015 at 16:13:59
11 Posted 26/07/2015 at 17:22:35
12 Posted 26/07/2015 at 17:26:56
Like them of loathe them but look at some of the professionals that have played late into their careers for us...
- David Weir
- Richard Gough
- Phil Neville
- Nigel Martyn
All defenders (GK exception) but looked after themselves to have a longer career.
All too easy to blame someone else.
13 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:03:24
14 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:16:09
Richard Gough, after a superb first season, barely made double figures in appearances the next.
15 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:26:01
16 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:53:00
Great article, really good read.
I am just fed up with the negativity about every time someone gets injured. It's interesting for me as looking at the recent Sterling transfer the players hold all the power but take some accountability.
17 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:59:36
I played in the Isle of Man leagues for 10 years and never had a hamstring once, let alone any major injuries. I knew what to do as far as training went.
One exercise good for the hammies was just walking in thigh deep sea, left me with lovely legs, but sadly crabs too.
18 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:59:47
19 Posted 26/07/2015 at 18:55:45
20 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:28:37
21 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:30:24
Donachie isnÃ¢Â€Â™t the only member of the Everton backroom staff to have moved on to pastures new since the successes of MartinezÃ¢Â€Â™s first season, when Everton finished fifth and scored their record points total. Fitness and conditioning specialist Steve Tashjian left in the summer, following his colleague Dave Billows who had left on MartinezÃ¢Â€Â™s arrival at the club in 2013.
Billows left to take over as head of fitness at Newcastle and Tashjian to take up the post of High Performance Director at MLS side Columbus Crew. Both boasted impressive CVs and were integral to the excellent fitness levels which characterised the latter phase of the Moyes era at Everton.
Billows received high praise from cruiserweight fighter and Everton fanatic Tony Bellew, who claimed that he was "the best in the business"Â. Perhaps more tellingly, Bellew added that "a lot of the lads at Everton really miss him as well."Â
ItÃ¢Â€Â™s fair to say that BillowsÃ¢Â€Â™ philosophy on fitness for elite athletes differed from Martinez's; according to the Newcastle Chronicle, one of BillowsÃ¢Â€Â™ favourite sessions involved wheel[ing] out "the stairs". They sound like nothing much but the metal contraption Â– with a 30-degree ramp and twelve 24-inch steps Â– was a way to increase acceleration and power. Players would sprint up the ramp half a dozen times and then hop down the stairs. The idea was to test muscles and joints at a key point during pre-season. It seemed to work.
22 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:38:34
23 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:34:39
Everyone could see the players not being fit enough last season and everyone who has competed at any level of sport knows that when you are not fit then you are much more susceptible to these kind of injuries.
It appears that more of the same is in store this season.
24 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:41:54
He was excellent first time around but has been out too much since coming back.
25 Posted 26/07/2015 at 19:07:05
Similar problem with player recruitment. The most overpriced players on the market are those who have figured in the Premier League. So what have Everton done since 2013? Signed 13 current or former Premier League players plus Besic and McGeady (whilst forgetting to find a quality replacement for Distin).
For me, the real issue is amateurish management. Pienaar is probably just the latest victim.
26 Posted 26/07/2015 at 20:03:38
27 Posted 26/07/2015 at 21:14:20
Not to much to ask, eh?
28 Posted 26/07/2015 at 21:17:31
Or could it be that Pienaar has damaged himself with his creative attempts to gain free-kicks? I had forgotten just how regular and annoying they were!
29 Posted 26/07/2015 at 21:31:06
Whatever the root cause, I simply don't want Martinez at the club for a minute longer.
30 Posted 26/07/2015 at 23:24:11
God knows what is happening but the 'guys who left were great' bit was dealt with during last season and seemingly debunked as the situation was worse at the place they / he left for.
31 Posted 27/07/2015 at 00:47:33
Isn't RB, a trained physio?
32 Posted 27/07/2015 at 01:31:54
He's a trained physio that seems to lack the respect to listen to players, fans or / most probably physios.
Look at Gerri Del Boy the other day, he spent 25 mins walking round holding his hamstring, stays on an is now on the injury list.
Need I say much more?
33 Posted 27/07/2015 at 09:10:53
34 Posted 27/07/2015 at 09:26:39
Every club suffers from them; a recent example being Fabian Delph at United. Every player can pick up a hamstring injury but the quicker ones are more susceptible.
Resting players at the right time and taking them off as soon as the first niggle surfaces are obvious precautionary measures. The way McCarthy was allowed to stay on for 15 minutes at Wolfsburg after first indicating he had a problem was really poor.
35 Posted 27/07/2015 at 10:16:34
According to the current injury list for Premier League teams, we have four hamstring injuries, more than any other club. Champion boxer Tony Bellew has been full of praise for Billows fitness methods, as were other Everton players at the time Billows left, so the fact that we are still having more hamstring problems than other clubs would suggest that Billows may not have been the problem, despite what you say about NUFC and their record.
I don't recall any debunking of the Saint Rockwood article when it appeared on ToffeeWeb but I do recall Osman saying in his book, and which were reprinted in a TW thread, that the training methods Martinez had introduced were so much easier than under Moyes to such an extent that the hardest under the Martinez regime were as easy as the Friday "warm down" sessions under Moyes. Lack of fitness can lead to muscle and soft tissue injuries, as I'm sure you are aware, in much the same way as pulling out of a tackle can get you hurt.
Martinez does seem to be trying to get the players fitter for this season's start then he did last season, which was amateurish in the extreme, but shouldn't he have known about fitness levels etc before now? Should he be "learning on the hoof" as opposed to already having sufficient knowledge to prepare a Premier League club?
James, whatever the problem is at Everton, it is getting worse under Martinez than it was under Moyes, not better.
James, I'm not having a pop at you at all, maybe if you read this from TW it will help...
36 Posted 27/07/2015 at 11:16:39
They look sharp and fit in the friendlies so far; at the start of last season, many were saying that the players were unfit, that may be true or it may not, it's not a proven fact, it's opinion!
If it was true, maybe Martinez was trying to save energy early in the season because we had a gruelling season ahead with the Europa League matches as well as the Premier League and domestic Cup fixtures!
Football is probably the hardest sport to stay injury free there is, with changing direction, sprinting from a standstill etc, you're bound to get some pulled muscles among a squad.
Older players are likely to be more susceptible as well, Pienaar has been injured more than his fair share.
Some individuals seem always to be injured, Gibson for instance, Bryan Robson from the 80-90 Man Utd team was injured most of the time, great player but injury prone, theres' many more examples.
37 Posted 27/07/2015 at 11:33:57
Incidentally, it's pissing down here...... I wonder who's fault that is? (at one time it'd be Moyes fault)
38 Posted 27/07/2015 at 13:17:26
He's been carrying niggles for seasons and it's catching up with him. As much as I have loved his style, his body isn't capable of playing a run of games without injury.
41 Posted 27/07/2015 at 14:42:43
42 Posted 27/07/2015 at 16:16:41
43 Posted 27/07/2015 at 17:11:59
45 Posted 27/07/2015 at 18:01:41
In my view, the majority of hamstring injuries are occurring with wingers and/or quick players (Mirallas, Deulofeu, Pienaar... I think Coleman suffered last year too). That's normal and an occupational hazard with most players who rely on sheer pace or change of pace (in Pienaar's case). Michael Owen anyone?
We have more quicker players now than a few years ago and also, footballers are such finely tuned athletes nowadays that they are more prone to muscular pulls and strains; result, we get more hamstring injuries. Most examples presented above of those who played on to ripe old ages were defenders and goalkeepers who didn't rely on speed and pace.
Are we not trying to use any excuse to heap blame on the coaching staff and training regime, which if we are honest, not many of us truly know too much about. Just saying.
47 Posted 27/07/2015 at 18:22:41
Besides hamstrings, you wouldn't get virtually the whole medical department going in protest at the new methods introduced by RM.
48 Posted 27/07/2015 at 18:30:38
Still I'd hope this is the opportunity for Oviedo to start at left mid... assuming his fitness worries are behind him!!! He's earned the right to have a run at it... hopefully RM agrees.
49 Posted 27/07/2015 at 18:51:51
53 Posted 27/07/2015 at 19:26:59
As ever, when I hear people complaining about the "negativity" on a thread towards "Robbie", I check back to see if the complaint is valid. They hardly ever are; yours is no exception.
Reading through the posts, it's clear to me that although a couple hold him accountable, your hero is getting away with absolute murder. These hamstring issues are happening on his shift. Who do you think should get the blame? The club cat!
Your claim that we have looked sharp in pre-season goes an awful long way to explaining your increasingly negative expectations for next season not to mention your incessant defence of this manager ? When are you going to accept that HE, not the club cat, is responsible?
"Looked Sharp"? did you see the Asia cup games? The ease with which Arsenal brushed us aside? I've seen sharper slugs on my patio!
54 Posted 27/07/2015 at 19:42:40
55 Posted 27/07/2015 at 19:48:00
Either way, it's not good. He's got to start looking forward rather than backwards.
56 Posted 27/07/2015 at 19:53:10
I think we should judge him on his team's results rather than the sick note quotient, don't you? After all he hasn't got so many stars that he can be blase about injuries, has he?
57 Posted 27/07/2015 at 20:05:55
I'd also back Raymond's claim that we looked sharper than last season. I predicted before a ball was kicked last season that we didn't look fit enough, and would drop significant points during our first few fixtures as a result. I think we are better this season, but I still do not feel that the squad will be as fit as it was during Moyes's tenure. It would be a shame if that is the case as I think we need to be 100% fit to play an effective pressing game and to improve our defence.
The hamstring injuries are a problem, although their concentration among wingers is hardly surprising. We should also put them into context during a pre-season where players across clubs around the country will pick up grade 1 hamstring injuries because of overuse. This happens season-in, season-out, and will be especially relevant in a truncated pre-season period because of an amended seasonal calendar. Players need to get fit quickly, and are customarily overworked. Hence the numerous anecdotes about players dreading pre-season and the vomiting stories.
However, we have also been fourth in 2013-14 for days lost to injuries (albeit concentrated on a select few injury prone players) and third last season. We might not be the worst in the league, but we are at the wrong end. However, that is not particularly surprising in view of the purchases of the likes of Gibson, Alcaraz and Kone, whilst we also have several older players in our squad. If we buy injury-prone players then our total injuries stats will get worse.
I think this is something which Martinez should look at, although I think sometimes it is about the player rather than the system. I think players like Deulofeu and Mirallas will unfortunately pick up hamstring injuries, irrespective of the conditioning and treatment they receive. But when we've got a wide spread, which a recent post (by Denis perhaps?) illustrated, we need to be wary.
I would also agree with the argument that Martinez rushes players back too soon. Unless we are playing in a final or semi-final, then we should not be taking risks. He has introduced Mirallas, Barkley and McCarthy back very quickly after injury in the past, and I do not feel that it is a productive tactic. Rushing back players quickly will also increase the chances of hamstring injury, especially if they have been out for a long time and their muscles are more vulnerable to overuse.
However, I would be happy for the players to sometimes speak their mind too, rather than just listening to the physios. Robben is famous for his desire to play when only 100%, which brought him into conflict with Mourinho, but sometimes a player is in the best position to understand his own body.
I think it will be interesting to see what happens during the season proper, and where we finish on the Injury league table. I think drawing attention to these kinds of trends is always a good idea however, because it's something that should be the subject of public discussion, especially when that discussion might make its way into the press.
It is notable, however, that Martinez's Wigan finished bottom of the injury table (ie, with the least injuries in the league) in 2009-10 and 2010-11. They then finished third from bottom in 2011-12. They did however finish third from the top in 2012-13, illustrating a rapid increase in injuries, even though their general level of injuries was about the best in the league for a four-year period under Martinez.
It seems possible then that it is perhaps the physios, the nature of the players, or a combination of both, which may be to blame.
58 Posted 27/07/2015 at 20:22:43
59 Posted 27/07/2015 at 20:32:30
On his day he is most creative player I've ever seen in a blue shirt. But, he along with Kone, Gibson, Mcgeady, Hibbert, is why the likes of Stoke and West Ham seem to be leaving us behind in the transfer market.
Clear the deadwood out and get some ambition. Give a reason for our coveted players to stay.
60 Posted 27/07/2015 at 20:46:30
And, yes, I do think there is an over exaggeration of criticism of Martinez, I've now lost count of the number of threads where I have asked the person whose making these "negative" claims to point to the posts they are referring to. They never do. Its become the first line of defence. They can't answer the criticism so the scream "NEGATIVITY"!
Martinez as been as poor as its possible to be for a year and you think criticism is ridiculous?
Sorry but claims like "we have looked sharp" this pre-season are the really ridiculous posts. Beating the mighty Jambos may have you all excited, but most people would have seen how easily we were beaten by Arsenal, they may not be worried about the four goals we conceded, but they will be worried sick about the number of times they carved our defence open.
It could have been easily double figures... yet you and Ray Fox think we looked sharp ?
Whats it gonna take?
61 Posted 27/07/2015 at 21:06:58
One aspect of our game is very worrying: all the creative options are coming down the wings, the problem of an attacking CM has not been addressed.
62 Posted 27/07/2015 at 21:36:41
63 Posted 27/07/2015 at 21:43:23
Ray again @6. All down to Martinez bringing in his lackies.
See where you are coming from.
Who are these incompetents/unqualified you are referring to?
65 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:10:52
The break between seasons seems to be too short and the human body might only be able to take just so much. Rather than do the simple thing like blaming RM perhaps, we should be looking more deeply at this subject. This requires some real study IMO.
My daughter, in Australia, is a PhD in Biomechanics and has worked with Aussie rules teams in solving issues. Surely, you have the opportunity in UK to fund a good PhD student to look at this as his or her major thesis?
66 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:18:17
That's not what my recollections are!
Darren, some of us like to give the counter arguments to yours and some others persistent criticism, there's a few good ones in this thread.
Your throwing a red herring out again saying I don't give the reasons for my support, I always say why in that instant I think the criticism is not deserved.
What's the saying, where all think alike, no one thinks very much.
67 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:25:09
Has any other club ever had as many hamstring injuries as Everton have?
68 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:40:15
However, when there is an increase in a particular injury, as we see now with the glut of hamstring problems, do you not think that there might be a link? When highly regarded and respected medical staff are dispensed with and standards and fitness levels appear to drop, does that not concern you? It does me.
Think back to when Moyes was here and the dogs abuse Round took. People asking what his role was, apart from spending 10 minutes with a flip chart before sending a sub on. It's not just Martinez that has taken this sort of criticism.
Although I do get the impression that Martinez and his staff are not that close, hence the comments that he rarely talks to them during a game, nor them with him.
Did you notice Deulofeu clutching his hamstring for some time without being subbed? Or McCarthy being kept on last season (Newcastle?) when he clearly was not fit, resulting in a longer injury than was necessary. Something doesn't look right to me.
69 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:47:05
You are simply lying Darren, or you were not reading my comments during the period, but for some reason feel that it is an appropriate to represent a false opinion. It's pathetic. So please Darren - provide me with evidence of your concerns about Martinez from pre-season?
Here by the way is mine: The Legacy of Pre-Season
And Darren -- again, I made two detailed replies specifically referring to negative posts... And guess what? I replied specifically to you in one! And you state posters never show you evidence? You are just a liar Darren. And it's pathetic. Does it make you feel big attacking people based on fallacious assumptions?
Here you go -- this is a copy and paste from Lyndon's thread:
"There are people on here who will always critique, always moan, and then go quiet when things are going better. There is nothing brave or bold about it, and it serves no purpose. The 'perfect mix' article was full of them, including one serial offender who claimed we could no longer compete with Stoke and Palace (and who luckily went quiet after I and others replied directly to it). It's not debate, it's simply throwing misinformed comments around without good reason."
And Darren -- this is not about negativity, it's about unnecessary negativity. That's the point of this thread. If we play badly in a match, and Martinez makes mistakes, he will rightly be criticised. He has been, and I do not know of any posters on here who represent the blind loyalty you refer to. Who are they? They've not been present in the threads I've been reading. But what's the point in jumping on everything Martinez has said, and every story, to have a go? For example, these are some recent examples from two Shaqiri threads:
'If some of these quality players from Europe prefer to go to clubs like Stoke, Palace (?), Newcastle for God's sake, and West Ham, it says a great deal about how far our profile has fallen and perhaps what a poor 'draw' Martinez is as a potential manager for some of these guys.'
'If RM's past transfer history is anything to go on, our so-called Number 10 will probably be Shaun Maloney.'
'To Stoke for 㾸m â€“ watch the shit-house of a board dive for cover....
I can hear it now: "We, errr... tried to sign him but he had a dodgy ankle 12 years ago."
Just shows how low we've sunk that we can't compete with Stoke, ffs.'
'...it says a lot when Stoke City are buying players of his quality and we are not at the races. I would have loved to have seen this lad at Goodison but as always we seem to end up with the cast-offs and players with potential or those players whose clubs will accept the fees on the drip over longer periods of time. It's not the end of the world but it sort of highlights where we as a club truly are in the modern Premier League.'
'We are getting outbid by West Ham, Stoke, and Crystal Palace. We cannot rely on players choosing us because of reputation either (as a lot of players outside of Britain haven't heard of us and treat us as a 2nd or 3rd tier club).
We cannot offer European soccer now either.
And we are not going to throw money to players to 'convince' them to join.
As long as BK is in charge we are heading south every year.'
This is just a selection -- these posters in general take press bullshit, ie, our interest in Shaqiri, to criticise the club and Martinez. It does not matter 1) if we are actually interested 2) or that Shaqiri is not the player we need, because he plays for himself and holds onto the ball for too long, just like most of our attacking midfielders. He is not a creative player. We were probably never interested. But invented press stories are used to have a go anyway.
Criticism is good -- unnecessary negativity isn't. I don't know what good the posters think it is doing? There is not an Everton fan on here that was happy with what happened last season. But some will represent that with reason, and in articles purposely dealing with tactics etc. Others will have a go each and every time, irrespective of article and story, and turn the thread into an argument about something often unrelated to the original story. This is not fun, or good debate. It's pointless and insistent negativity, that resembles a child throwing their toys out of their pram at points.'
Are quotes evidence enough for you? Or are you going to ignore them too?
And for your information - if you had read my comments throughout the year, you would have seen criticism of Martinez from pre-season onwards. I do not believe he is the manager to take us forward, and I feel that his tactical approach is flawed. But guess what? He is our manager, and I'm going to support him at the beginning of this season, because this season may be different. I'm not going to use every opportunity to criticise him. Plenty of managers come back from poor times, and plenty of managers prove people wrong.
Whilst I do not feel that Martinez will take us to where we can get to, he does have positives, and I'm not arrogant enough to think I may not be proved wrong. That's why I will give him the benefit of the doubt, until/unless he proves again that he is not the right man for Everton. I'm definitely not going to lie and embellish on a supporter's forum. It's exactly the conduct of posters like you that make me want to quit ToffeeWeb.
70 Posted 27/07/2015 at 22:50:46
71 Posted 27/07/2015 at 23:06:06
There are lots of things that RM has got wrong. We all know that but the fans constantly whinging at Bobby are missing the point altogether.
God knows he had a nightmare in his second season, let's hope he puts them right this season. It still won't solve anything though until their is change at boardroom level.
72 Posted 27/07/2015 at 23:06:34
And I've got to the point now when I know that looking at certain news items, even ones dealing with press bullshit like the Shaqiri story, will just be used to criticise Martinez. I feel that comments section becomes something I dread. And to be fair the same happened with Moyes too. And it annoys me too much, because it's not only unnecessary, but it's plan stupid. I don't think that there is an Everton fan on here who was happy with what happened last season. But some can represent it with tact and show some patience, and others will use every opportunity to shout and scream, and insult those who show restraint.
73 Posted 27/07/2015 at 23:28:27
You say you are "too passionate about Everton"
Top man and stick with it on here.
74 Posted 28/07/2015 at 00:19:24
ToffeeWeb would be a poorer place without your contribution.
75 Posted 28/07/2015 at 00:27:09
77 Posted 28/07/2015 at 01:12:28
With that: "dealing with people like Darren Hind, especially when arguments like his descends into lie and fiction."
Been reading him and you for some time now. Like you, he presents, and holds, a position. Can't recall a lie or fiction in any of it.
78 Posted 28/07/2015 at 03:41:51
I'm a newby, but since Ive been an Evertonian, someone has always been receiving treatment. So...an honest question that a TWer with more longevity might have an answer to.
79 Posted 28/07/2015 at 05:41:25
Your posts on this thread are coming very close to a line where we will take action to curb the acidic tone in which you are hammering home your point repeatedly. Please consider this before replying.
81 Posted 28/07/2015 at 07:02:38
I did not come on here complaining about a poor pre season. I have deliberately pulled back from commenting on it this time, I responded to a claim that we have looked sharp this pre season. I saw the Asia cup and so did you. You will know that the claim is utter nonsense. it was the repeated by another poster, so I responded again. Is it really negative to refute such pie in the sky nonsense ? Are we not in danger of going from one extreme to the other ?
I also responded because a so called "positive" poster rounded on the so called "negative" for blaming Martinez for everything. Was he right ? read the posts he was referring to. There are far more people exonerating Martinez than Blaming him. This is happening with increasing regularity.
I get Lyndon's point, but some people have jumped on it and are crying foul at the slightest criticism.
Jim Knightley challenges me to prove I'm not a "liar" by "providing him with evidence of my concerns about Martinez per season" . .Thats like asking the Pope to prove he is a catholic. I submitted dozens maybe even hundreds of posts expressing my concerns.
On several occasions now, I have noticed so called positive people turning a thread negative by crying foul about negative posts when there hadnt been any. When I have asked them to point to the posts, they have been unable to do so. If Jim thinks I'm "lying". I invite him to show me a single example.
I'm fully aware that some threads are negative, but that doesnt mean they all are. Why do people bring the negativity of one thread as evidence of the negativity in a current one ? . . How many times do we refer back to the Shaqiri threads ?
There is a very clear difference between being "too passionate" (dear me) about Everton and calling people liars on an internet forum because they see things differently.
I hope you don't take action against Michael because I like the debate, but it's your site, your call.
Actually Michael. thinking about it. You wont have to take action. I'm out of these Martinez threads. I may come across as "acidic" - had to look that one up - but I would never sink to calling an individual names, However Claims like "we have looked sharp" in pre season make me crazy.
I'm sure it wasn't Lyndon's intention for things to go from one extreme to another
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