Bombs and bungs: The story of how Andrei Kanchelskis joined Everton

17/09/2015  29 Comments  [Jump to last]
Andrei Kanchelskis had his best season in English football playing for Everton... but the story of how his move from Manchester United came about in 1995, and the ramifications back in his native Ukraine, make for shocking reading.

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Reader Comments (29)

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Adam Fenlon
1 Posted 17/09/2015 at 10:03:35
Wow. Nothing in the article suggests Everton were doing the wrong thing also. Hopefully that's true, but hard to keep your hands clean wen dealing with criminals like that.
Tony J Williams
2 Posted 17/09/2015 at 12:25:35
Bloody Hell!!!
Tony Ateman
3 Posted 17/09/2015 at 12:33:58
When we were sniffing around Yarmolenko it was said that it's "difficult" to do business with Ukranian clubs.
Jason Thomas
4 Posted 17/09/2015 at 13:10:07
Exactly Tony A. There is more to buying players than we all think or know!
Ray Robinson
5 Posted 17/09/2015 at 14:22:54
Well if that was murky, Kanchelski's departure from Everton might prove to be equally so. He clearly wasn't trying very hard in the FA Cup tie against Bradford when we lost 3-2 and there were all sorts of rumours of gambling debts, sell-on fees etc.
Niall McIlhone
6 Posted 17/09/2015 at 14:25:17
He was certainly explosive on the pitch though? Andre's late goal at Highbury on that cold wet afternoon in the 90's ending Everton's long barren run against Arsenal was a great memory. He really was a quality player, even if the circumstances of his acquisition were, ahem, unconventional to say the least!
Duncan McDine
7 Posted 17/09/2015 at 14:37:16
TJW(2) - I second that! Incredible story.
Eugene Ruane
8 Posted 17/09/2015 at 14:39:14
Niall (6) - I was with my mate in the North Bank that day. We didn't make much of a song and dance when we got our first but when Kanchelskis scored, well you don't really think beyond the joy (and the goal revealed plenty of other blues in there).

As it turned out, the only real dissenter was a feller three or four rows back who kept repeating "Scass scamm... scass scamm... fackin scass scamm."

In the end I took a chance, turned around and said "Mate, no matter how many times you say that, we'll still be winning 2-1."

We got out with our scathes intact. Great day.

Ray Robinson
9 Posted 17/09/2015 at 15:06:07
Don't confuse the brilliant Kanchelskis of the first season with the one of the season after! Something clearly happened to him in between. There were rumours of a Russian betting ring involved. Whatever it was, he stank the place out towards the end with his lack of effort – seemingly playing for a move away and another payoff.
Thomas Surgenor
10 Posted 17/09/2015 at 16:20:56
Did we ever recoup any money for him?
Ben Jones
11 Posted 17/09/2015 at 16:28:17
Is that real?!

Sounds like some GTA stuff to me.

Andrew Clare
12 Posted 17/09/2015 at 16:40:03
Kanchelskis was a cracking player; he would be worth a fortune today and he was absolutely brilliant in that first season for Everton.

Where there is big money involved, criminals aren't far away. I bet we wouldn't believe the background story to some of these big transfers over the years.

Nick Entwistle
13 Posted 17/09/2015 at 18:15:55
I do remember the transfer just going on for ages. I was beginning to question the credibility of p302.

Yeah kids, p302!

Colin Glassar
14 Posted 17/09/2015 at 18:37:13
I wonder if RA threatened BK like that? "Villiam, you give me de Stonesy boy or you vill be svimming wid de fishes very soon, da?". Obviously our Bill grew a pair and called his bluff.
Ste Traverse
15 Posted 17/09/2015 at 19:00:02
Kancheslskis was probably the last, genuine world-class player to play for us.

I remember him signing and posing at Goodison in a Blue shirt with these dodgy umbrellas and me thinking it was amazing we could attract arguably Man Utd's best player. (wouldn't happen today, that's for sure)

Then,a few days later, I picked up my Sunday paper and the deal was reported to have collapsed when everyone thought he'd already signed, then it all got messy for a while.

He was devastating for the majority of the 95-96 season after coming back from injury after Lee Sharpe did him at Goodison, tearing apart team after team.

I don't agree he was poor for all of his second season. While he certainly wasn't as good as in his first, I thought he was reasonable up until that 7-1 win over Southampton when he scored a couple, but after that, his form really dipped, rumours grew around him and looked like he wanted to move on, culminating in his abysmal performance against Bradford.

I have fond memories of Andrei. Shame he wasn't around for longer.

Mike Gaynes
16 Posted 17/09/2015 at 19:07:38
Here's a line you don't often see in a football article:

"Aleksandr Bragin the Shakhtar president and five bodyguards were blown up at Shakhtar's ground four minutes into a match against Crimean team Tavria."

I wonder how much injury time the ref added to the first half.

Ian Bennett
17 Posted 17/09/2015 at 19:38:28
I posted the link on the Yarmolenko thread the other day. I am not surprised. If I remember rightly, we had agreed a fee, and the had to pay a buyout fee of another ٞ.8m.

He was a top, top player. That season he had some wonderful games against Liverpool - Kan Cans Kop! Wednesday, etc etc. The rumour at the time was he had big gambling debts to clear with the wrong people.

Wow what a story, and my favourite player of the 90s.

Eugene Ruane
18 Posted 17/09/2015 at 19:41:58
Mike (16) - 'Here's a line you don't often see in a football article - 'Aleksandr Bragin the Shakhtar president and five bodyguards were blown up at Shakhtar's ground four minutes into a match against Crimean team Tavria'

Imagine taking your seat 5 mins late and asking 'anything happened?'

Ste (15) - 'Kancheslskis was probably the last, genuine world-class player to play for us.'

All opinion of course, no right or wrong, but if you think Kanchelskis was a better player than Rooney, or that Rooney wasn't/isn't world class, my opinion is that you are Wrongy McWrong from Wrongton (just down the road from Wrongsville).

John Raftery
19 Posted 17/09/2015 at 20:55:32
I always felt that Kanchelskis was following instructions from his agent. No wonder!
Ste Traverse
20 Posted 17/09/2015 at 23:01:20
Eugene (#18),

Rooney was 16, 17 and 18 when he played for us. There's no way he was world-class at the time, hence my reasoning Kanchelskis was the last genuine world-class player at the club.

Whether he's become world-class since his departure is a debate which has raged on for years and will probably continue long after he's retired.

Mike Gaynes
21 Posted 18/09/2015 at 01:50:32
Eugene (18)... >>"anything happened?"<<

...and the answer would have been, "Nyet, but there's some seats open in the owner's box... let's move down after they've cleaned up."

And the Shaktar fans would have been singing "Bombs Away" by The Police on the terraces.

Winston Williamson
22 Posted 21/09/2015 at 13:07:49
I once met him...I was about 12 and was having a birthday dinner with the players (Grandad's 80th). I asked him for an autograph and he actually was quite sheepish and modest. Really nice bloke.

Was gutted hero, Big Dunc, was in prison at the time and didn't get to meet him.

Jackie Barry
23 Posted 21/09/2015 at 13:19:40
Nigel Martyn was world class.
Tony Abrahams
24 Posted 21/09/2015 at 13:52:56
Stones might be one day!
Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 21/09/2015 at 14:34:53
Winston (22) why didn' you meet him after you got out!!!!!
Andrew Clare
26 Posted 21/09/2015 at 15:03:29
"World class" is used too often to describe players who are not world class. Kanchelskis was; Rooney... I don't think so. He is/was very good but not world class.

Messi is truly world class and maybe a handful of others but that's about it. Bobby Charlton was very good but not world class. Pele was world Class, as was Maradona and Zidane.

Chris Williams
27 Posted 21/09/2015 at 15:56:38
From memory, Everton with Kanchelskis finished top 6. The following season, without him, they ended up in a relegation fight. He was that good.

His departure, and his Bradford display couldn't really erase his impact although I was disgusted at that game at the time.

He is in my all time Everton team, going back to the early 50s.

Winston Williamson
28 Posted 21/09/2015 at 16:14:27
Very good Dave!
Peter Roberts
29 Posted 06/10/2015 at 17:46:59

Kanchelskis was good that season but the 2nd season struggle was equally down to the injury to Andy Hinchcliffe who'd played his way into the England reckoning and was the best left-back in the league.

I have Neville Southall's diary from that season and our injury record was so woeful; by the end of the season we were playing the kids we were so thin. We were also hovering around 8th well into December and our form tailed off shortly afterwards.

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