Pennington recalled for FA Cup semi-final

by | 21/04/2016  57 Comments  [Jump to last]
Everton have recalled defender Matthew Pennington from his loan at Walsall to provide emergency central-defensive cover at Wembley on Saturday.

The 21-year-old has been playing an important role in the Saddlers' push for promotion from League One but with Ramiro Funes Mori suspended for the semi-final with Manchester United, Phil Jagielka and Gareth Barry injured and John Stones ill, Roberto Martinez is facing a selection crisis at centre-half.

Muhamed Besic is capable of filling in at centre-back but Martinez could summon Pennington, who made his first-team debut in the Capital One Cup against Barnsley last year, to bolster his options.  

Reader Comments (57)

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Kevin Naylor
1 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:25:39
Get him back and play him from the start.
Gavin Johnson
2 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:33:44
He's rated very highly by Walsall, as he was at Coventry. Recall him and play him at CB or RB. He will put in a shift and take his chance, which is all we can ask. Lets face it, he can't do any worse than the shower of shite display we saw from our so called 1st team last night.
Jim Bennings
3 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:36:54
Stick him in, he can't be worse than our regular shite!!

Brent Stephens
4 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:37:38
The danger is we throw young lads into a semi-final, against a team like MU, and they bomb and have their confidence and development knocked massively. I'd sooner Roberto was made to put his boots on - let's see what possession game he's willing to play then.
Jay Harris
5 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:42:02
I would sooner Roberto put his skates on and not stop till he gets to Spain.
Dave Abrahams
6 Posted 21/04/2016 at 19:52:41
Yes bring him back, no nonsense player, he will give the team spirit, play for ninety minutes, got a bit of pace and can put a tackle in, he will not let Everton down.

While we are at it, I'll echo what Patrick Murphy suggested earlier today, bring back Jonjo Kenny for right back, he played at Wembley the other week, another kid who won't be over awed, he'll let United know they are in a match, throw Ryan Ledson in as well along with Liam Walsh, he'll be in the thick of it, they might be young but they will have more fight than a lot of the players who went through the motions last night.

Dowell is another who can come on later in the game with a bit of class, while I'm in the mood get John Daley and Eugene in the dressing room before the game to give the pep talk, no fuck that, the players will be laughing too much, anyway we are not out of this yet, United are not much cop, we can win this.

Just don't let Martinez or any of his coaches near the team, David Unsworth is okay, he can get them ready, especially the young lads, they will run through brick walls for him.Ever fuckin ton!!!!!

William Colman
7 Posted 21/04/2016 at 20:06:36
Better right back than Oviedo and may need him at center back, because Besic could be needed in midfield.
Richard Reeves
8 Posted 21/04/2016 at 20:14:56
Why not try Browning? Put him in at centre back and give Pennington the right back position. For all of Martinez's quotes a few years ago of bringing through the youngsters he won't have the courage as he has proved over the last year or so.

I think he'll stick with the old guard which means the terrifying prospect of another horror show from Oviedo.
Andrew James
10 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:07:34
I am hoping Pennington won't have any of the nonsense they've been spouting at Finch Farm in his game. Hopefully he'll have been trained in the Midlands to aim for Row Z and defend corners when required.

You know, the basics.

Christy Ring
12 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:22:59
Why wasn't he back earlier, considering we had no defender on the bench last night. A Mickey Mouse manager, total amateur.

Steavey Buckley
13 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:23:17
Pennington should have played last night with a few other Everton under 21s.
Nick Page
14 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:26:48
Walsall would batter us.
Joe O'Brien
15 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:32:24
Browning is out for the season Richard. Good news bringing pen back, Oviedo got roasted last night. Galloway should be on the bench too as back up for our CB's. Dowell should be taking Niasse place on the bench too. If I see that player who can't play taking up a much needed spot, I'll crack up
Ste McCoombe
16 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:56:31
What about Mattioni in loan at Doncaster and Holgate
John Jones
17 Posted 21/04/2016 at 21:58:49

Jagielka or Stones




Subs: Howard, Galloway, Gibson, Osman, Barkley, Deulofeu, Niasse.

Gavin Johnson
18 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:13:34
Going off how Brendan Galloway played earlier in the season I think he has to be the player who partners Stones/Jags. I'd drop Oviedo to the bench. He's a good LB it's not working at RB. I'd play Pennington there.
Andrew James
19 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:25:38
John Jones

When on paper and forgetting whatever rubbish he's filled their heads with, that forward line and bench are decent. That's why it is shame he'll be managing them.

If BK is persisting because of his Cup final pedigree then he is foolish. LVG has won the Champions League and will be yet another in a long line of managers to school our useless manager.

Something radical needed doing here like firing him this morning and sending a relieved and patched up side down South. Whoever took over for the day might have seen the proverbial dead cat bounce needed to get to the final.

Clive Lewis
20 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:30:38
May as well play youngsters give them some time for the future. We are building the team around a new manager. Mancini would be a good choice if available.
Jeff Armstrong
21 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:33:17
John Jones, Oviedo at right back after last night's showing, and his pathetic performance in his favoured position against Southampton – you've got to be joking, mate.
Ray Roche
22 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:38:52
Isn't Galloway still injured? I'd certainly have the two lads who played last Saturday,Connolly and Davies on the bench, if not in the team.
Graham Coldron
23 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:47:39
The main reason why Martinez should be sacked (last night)apart is the abysmal home from. I have seen better Everton teams with so called worse players - for some reason the collective attitude of the players is wrong and needs sorting now.
Andrew James
24 Posted 21/04/2016 at 22:50:25
Does anyone know how the youngsters playing? In terms of style?

Are they more solid than our first team?

I am sure Roberto has us covered though:


That'll surprise Utd. We can play a high line (with our new CB pairing of Lennon and Osman standing just outside their semi circle) and then launch high balls at the front three.

Sorry to mickey take but that's what our manager has been doing.

Adolf Ng
25 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:10:11
Hibbert and Pennington as CB partnership then.
Gavin Johnson
26 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:14:29
Its a shame Niasse looks as though he's shite. I'd like us to play with 2 up top. I guess we'd have to make do with Kone playing there. We need to do something different other than the ubiquitous and predictable 4-2-3-1 with Rom standing around isolated waving his arms in the air.
Charlie Lloyd
27 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:35:15
Seen Pennington play a few times and he seems a no nonsense type. Decent positional sense and tackler plus quite strong. Ok on the ball but not as silky as others which not that bad.

My main issues for the SF is Martial up against our right back. If it's Oviedo we have problems. Pennington can play there but is more of a CB then Connolly its a big ask to expect him to contain Martial. Then there is Felliani. If deployed off the main striker with licence to roam in and around the box he is bound to win a big share of aerial balls. That spells trouble with Mori now missing as well.

These are two factors that must have a strategy in place to nullify.

Do we think it's been considered?

Peter Gorman
28 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:40:37
Keep Pennington and send Stones to Walsall on loan.
Kieran Kinsella
29 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:46:28
No way Pennington will play. RM didn't have a single defender on the bench v RS instead he loaded up with has been midfielders. He will go with a patched up Stones and a makeshift pairing with Besic. He has no respect or understanding of defensive roles so won't pick an actual defender instead of one of his favorites.
Andy Crooks
30 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:54:06
If we are to win on Saturday there will be a story to it. There will be a hero,maybe it will be Pennington. I think we will win; getting rid of Roberto will, in my view, not be that straightforward.

Say, we pull off a plucky win. Then, win the cup. I would sack Martinez no matter what, but Bill Kenwright will not sack a cup winner. So, the Roberto project is down to Saturday.

I believe that a huge amount of Evertonians want him gone but, if we win the cup, which I hope, and think we will, who on that night, will start a Martinez out thread?

Peter Gorman
31 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:57:11
I volunteer Andy.
Vijay Nair
32 Posted 21/04/2016 at 23:57:24
Ste, Mattioni got injured at Doncaster and was sent back to us. Not a peep about him since.
Paul Birmingham
34 Posted 22/04/2016 at 00:17:42
Play to our best squad strengths. It's the last throw of the dice in the pits of a season? Youth could win it for us, Manure are as bad as we can be. I reckon the storm this week, could become calm, it's a funny old game..😀🏆
Joe O'Brien
35 Posted 22/04/2016 at 01:00:56
I 2nd that Andy. I want that useless manager out once the season finishes without a doubt. I've been supporting Everton for over 30yrs and have been aching for a silverware, but even if we win the cup I still want him out out out. He's simple not good enough and as our motto says. .only the best is good enough
Victor Jones
36 Posted 22/04/2016 at 01:41:30
Should we actually manage to win this years FA cupI will gladly start a Martinez out problem. No doubt that some supporters would then want to cut him some slack.Give him yet another season. Not me

Take a close look at the league positiontake a look at how many games we have actually won..he will relegate Everton Football Club next season. I would not give him anymore timethe experiment is over.

Please remind me when the experiment actually started.the football has been mainly shitethere were even signs of what was to his first season.Some experiment.

Plenty of crap managers and clubs have managed to win the FA cup Martinez and Wigan are on that list..

The real winners are the managers who know how to oversee a proper League campaign. Know how to win football matches.

Not preside over this crapand then try to tell us all how fucking great everything is..

Martinez should not have been anywhere near EFC.he has wasted three yearsand set us back a few years.and finished a few players chances of international glory.The one time "best left back in England" is a prime example. Will Stones and Barkley feature much in the Euros? Is Coleman the player he was under Moyes?.WTF has gone wrong with Mirallas.and Lukaku's dip in form is doing nobody any favoursincluding himself.

Anyhowthis is about Pennington..good luck to the lad..I hope that he gets a game on Saturdayhe equipped himself well in the few games that he did play last season..was one of them against Man Utd?

But I half expect Martinez to load the team with all the deadwood.they should just about last for about 20 minutesmaybe Del might last to half timeBarkley to about 60 minutes. Let's hope that Lukaku breaks sweat. And that Niasse has enough energy to reach the benchI have visions of him being stretchered off the bench..Along with Gibson.

What else can go wrong.The team bus breaks down.and Robles gets injured giving a push God help us

PS.will Amanda Holden be at Wembley? Maybe she could give the pre match team talkcouldn't be any worse than anything that Martinez says.. Now, now – nothing naughty.

Brian Cleveland
37 Posted 22/04/2016 at 02:44:56
Come back Distin, all is forgiven!
Dave Long
38 Posted 22/04/2016 at 03:00:08
Lukaku's arms waving in the air is an update on Anichebe's pounding of the turf. As said previously, he's happier playing with ice cream Kone. I trust they are all in St Luke's today repenting. We need a miracle performance.

They need to summon up the historical sports upsets, Ali's shock in Zaire, the 1980 USA miracle on ice, Aintree's Bob Champion, Dennis Taylor, Tyson Fury, Wimbledon great escape......
William Cartwright
39 Posted 22/04/2016 at 03:49:15
Let's bust the myth about Martinez having the ability to play the youngsters. It is one of the worst facets of his completely exposed range of limited, or more aptly destructive skills.

Many teams have players in their late teens / early 20's playing regularly. Everton do not. We have bunched them all together in dead rubber games once in a while, but that's the only, and frankly quite useless isolated example of crap management of youth that he's come up with.

We have been treading water in the league for some time, but has there been a structured integrated plan of one new young player? Not bloody one! It is an utter disgrace and is so against the core principles of the Club I am shocked at how he gets away with it. It is one of the biggest failings of his disgraceful managerial incompetence and like the others, it is cloaked under a spin where he repeatedly claims the opposite. Consider . . . . . .

Apart from fucking up Barkley, Stones, and to some extent Geri, he has simultaneously overseen and overlooked :- Ledson, an upcoming star last season) McAleny (star of pre-season and now the main man at Wigan), Kenny,(what a prospect) Pennington (sideshow on loan until he is desperate so then seems willing to risk him in a semi-final against manure . . . .. !), Brewster (maybe a bit early? not sure), Galloway (what's happened there?), Connolly and Davies (did extremely well then immediately ignored), Henen (he was coming on well but it has not been working for a while at Fleetwood . . . . . ), and the exciting Dowell, and Evans . . . .

This fruits of the total professionalism of Sheedy and Unsy (how great has he emerged as 'managerial material' ) is really phenomenal in the true sense of the word, no sarcasm intended, are being ignored, and key development experience is being lost. Simultaneously we have excellent but unfortunately ageing club servants being retained and overstaying their welcome, instead of having a fruitful and dignified retirement plans in place. Instead we have expensive retirees and unfit newcomers clogging up the the bench! Its a bloody disgrace!

So much his managerial thinking and quite potty strategy is damaging Everton's present and the future of the Club Which is costing millions over and above the cost of salaries for him and his cronies.

Moshiri is a multi - multi millionaire. He will not allow this to go on. The theatrical farce will be sorted at exactly the right pace, soon, if not immediately after the FA Cup exit. But I seriously hope he does not overlook bringing forward the qualities and benefits of the youth.

Rahman Talib
42 Posted 22/04/2016 at 07:07:21
Andrew James.

You hit it spot on.

Under Bobby the Loser, its all about trying to do the fancy stuff and forget about the basics.

At.least OFM doesnt compromise on the basics at all. He put together a bunch of rag tags players.and stiched them into a consistent top 7 team simply by making sure the basics are taken care of.

Nothing prolific about our OFM at all. He just takes care of the basics down to the last itsy bitsy details.

We hated him for sticking to Phil Neville through and through but Phil gets things done with no mistakes or errors.

When was the last time we saw Phil Neville making stupid miskates?

I say bring Moyes back for the rest of the season

Liam Reilly
43 Posted 22/04/2016 at 07:36:23
Is Galloway injured? He has to start in the centre if not.

I suspect Stones will move to right back and one of: an unfit Jags, an unfit Barry or someone completely unsuitable like Besic whose is too small and a penalty/red card waiting to happen in that position.

I'd be amazed to see Pennington anywhere but the dugout.

Colin Glassar
44 Posted 22/04/2016 at 07:43:58
Whoever plays we will still lose. I wish the lads (and travelling fans) all the best but my only hope now is that they can keep the score down.

It's got to the stage now where I'm quite happy to work tomorrow and miss the game, I'm just not bothered anymore. Thank you Roberto, thank you Everton, thank you BK and co.

Laurie Hartley
45 Posted 22/04/2016 at 07:45:03
Steavy # 13,

Time to put the "I told you so" folder back in the filing cabinet.

As Andy # 30 has said the sad tail of this season may still have a twist.

Dave # 6 - thanks for giving me a lift. We are in a semi - we have to be up for it.

Everton youth - giant killers!

Brent Stephens
46 Posted 22/04/2016 at 08:02:45
If Roberto is the problem, then logically the solution isn't bringing in the youngsters - only to destroy their confidence with a thrashing.
Ray Roche
47 Posted 22/04/2016 at 08:16:48
Brent, the only bright part of the Southampton game was the performance of the two youngsters.
Brent Stephens
48 Posted 22/04/2016 at 09:04:15
Ray. I agree. But it was limited time. I fear for those young lads exposed to a full 90 minutes of Man Utd, being told by Martinez to play in a way that might not be natural to them. We've got experienced pros whose form and confidence has been shattered by the man, so I really would fear for the young lads.
Thomas Surgenor
49 Posted 22/04/2016 at 09:21:29
I believe we can win.
I want us to win.

Without that hope we have nothing and might as well not turn up. We got to fight for everything. We got to use this weeks events to fire the team up one last time. We need a leader to emerge... Stand up mo, now is your time.

Perhaps the reason Martinez hasn't been shown the door ....yet, is because our board share the same "unwinable" game opinion as many on here. A defeat may even make Martinez walk?

With the injuries and patched up team, why throw Unsi or dunc under the poverbial bus? It would be extremely unfair on their young coaching careers to give them a days prep, half a team and a stadium full of expectancy for such a big game. I say let Martinez set up his team one last time but get dunc in to try fire them up.

I swear, if we go out and show no passion... It's not just Martinez that should be sacked but the players with them.

Ray Roche
50 Posted 22/04/2016 at 09:23:13
Brent, I think Connolly should have been given the shirt on Wednesday, OK, it's a bit sink or swim but he couldn't have done worse than Oviedo. And playing Davies would have meant Barry being fit for tomorrow. None of them will progress under Martinez.
Paul Thompson
51 Posted 22/04/2016 at 10:14:14
If Jags is not fit, I'd have no compunction about playing Pennington, who is at least a proper centre half who has had a fair amount of game time this season. Right back is the problem. We all agree no Oviedo. In the unlikely case of Jags being fit, Stones can go there. Lennon could do it at a stretch, but I'd go for Connolly. As he would be up against Martial, no easy task, but think of the alternatives!
Colin Hughes
52 Posted 22/04/2016 at 11:38:25
If we win tomorrow I am totally convinced our trophy drought will be over. I believe Palace and Watford have achieved their target in staying up and the fa cup is not top priority as it is for us.
Also by the time the final comes around this mini injury crisis will be over with the likes of Jagielka, Coleman, Mori and Barry fully fit/available.
Yes we want a new manager but we also did when Walter Smith was here for three baron and tedious years only to be followed by 11 more years of no success in Moyes. Let's get some silverware then worry about the future.
Brent Stephens
53 Posted 22/04/2016 at 11:42:12
Ray, I can't say ur wrong. It's just so sad that we've got to talk about taking the risk of throwing a few youngsters in. The other half of me (not her) is imagining a couple of young lads in tomoz and us winning!
Ray Roche
54 Posted 22/04/2016 at 12:18:52
Brent, we've needed a back up for Coleman for two seasons, OK, Browning may have been up for the job but we've known he's out for the season for months yet no back up? Daft. For a club of our standing we should NEVER be scratching around for players. I would definitely try Connolly at right back.
Dave Abrahams
55 Posted 22/04/2016 at 13:04:43
Brent (53) I understand your thinking, about throwing the young lads to the wolves, but I've seen them, they are winners, they will be jumping and praying to play,Jonjo. Is from just off the City centre, street wise and a tough little player, will battle all day long, Ledson can tackle as good as anyone, he'll be doing that as well as passing, giving directions to any Everton player around him, Liam Walsh will be doing the same as well as taking free kicks and his corners will put most of the first team to shame.

Connelly is a left back normally but if he plays, he'll do a competent job, Brent don't worry about the kids if they are picked they will not let the club down.

It's unlikely more than one two of them will play but I would have no fear if four or five played they will put more effort into their game than quite a few of the senior players have done recently.

Pete Edwards
56 Posted 22/04/2016 at 13:11:44
Rahman, please read your post again and tell me you typed it with your tongue firmly in your cheek?!?!
James Hughes
57 Posted 22/04/2016 at 13:50:05
The risk tomorrow will not come from Manure as they are not a patch on the old all- conquering, swaggering team they were.

The risk will come from our manager and how he approaches the game and his tactics or lack of them

Mike Allen
58 Posted 22/04/2016 at 15:43:04
Pennington back. Could do with Garbutt and McAleny. They should never be out on loan, they should have been in squad with games under their belt by now.

I just have this feeling that RM will play Howard. Certainly not my choice however there WILL be another "fuck-me" episode to contend with before the final whistle
Jay Harris
59 Posted 22/04/2016 at 16:00:58
As always common sense views which unfortunately our useless manager does not have.
Brent Stephens
60 Posted 22/04/2016 at 17:07:28
Ray #54, Dave #55 - OK, you've convinced me! Actually, Dave, I've watched a bit of these guys when they play at Southport and like what I see in several of them.
Roger Helm
61 Posted 22/04/2016 at 22:48:27
It seems bizarre that a club of our size, with our money, after a few injuries ends up with no right back, one playable striker, no centre backs, one number ten and one left back.

All the others are dead wood - old, unfit, chronically injured, young and untried, hopelessly out of form or just generally useless.

I think most semi-pro clubs are better run.

Ian McDowell
62 Posted 23/04/2016 at 12:36:27
Good luck to him if he makes the starting line up. It seems that a lot of young players now rarely get the chance unless forced upon the manager. Pity Browning isn't fit.

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