Crisis looms for Silva as another season derails

By Lyndon Lloyd 21/09/2019 105comments  |  Jump to last
Everton 0 - 2 Sheffield United

Marco Silva spent his time with the print media yesterday fending off the notion that his team were in an early-season crisis but come the final whistle at Goodison Park this evening, following an utterly dreadful performance against Sheffield United, the Portuguese’s disheveled hair and flustered countenance betrayed a man who can be under no illusions about the mess he and his team have made of the new campaign.

On the face of it, Silva’s contention that Everton weren’t the only fancied team struggling to get going this season had some merit but Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal were all already in varying states of upheaval as last season came to a close and have begun this one in somewhat predictable fashion.

After finishing 2018-19 with a string of home victories, a hugely impressive defensive record and just two defeats in 11 matches, the Blues had seemingly put their mid-season slump and defensive struggles behind them and were arguably better placed than most to start the new campaign strongly and help set the early pace in the Premier League. A favourable start to the season against two newly-promoted clubs and three that have “bottom half” written all over them should have provided the ideal platform to do so. The proverbial door to the top six was open; instead there is mounting evidence that Everton have probably already scuppered their hopes of finishing among those coveted positions come May.

Too early for such doom-laden prognostications? How long have you been supporting Everton? After today, the notion that the Blues will be improving on eighth place looks fanciful as we once again find ourselves trapped in this cycle of optimism crushed by the reality of a losing team and a floundering manager.

It’s difficult to know where to start after what can only be described as an utterly dire display this afternoon. Sheffield United won 2-0 with just two shots all game and only one on target (Yerry Mina inadvertently scored a first-half own goal) with a performance that their manager, Chris Wilder, described as their worst with the ball so far this season.

Everton had 70% of the possession but — stop us if you’ve heard this before — did almost nothing with it, forcing just three meaningful saves from Dean Henderson, none of which were particularly taxing of the Blades’ goalkeeper. The most worrying aspects of the whole match, however, were the set-piece defending (again), the galling lack of character and attacking punch in the Blues’ side, particularly in the second half, and the desperate moves made by Silva in an attempt to salvage something from the game.

Eyebrows were raised when Alex Iwobi, arguably one of the most effective Everton players in recent games, was dropped to the bench to accommodate Bernard while the manager persisted with two holding midfielders against a limited attack. Moise Kean’s return to the starting XI was less surprising given Silva’s desire to bed him in at home but by the end of 90 minutes, the hosts had a five-man forward line and just three defenders and not much of a midfield to speak of after Morgan Schneiderlin and Seamus Coleman were withdrawn in the second half.

It was perhaps not surprising then that John Lundstram was able to capitalise on the space as the Toffees chased the game in the final quarter of an hour to slip Lys Mousset in to double the lead and kill the match with a clinical finish past Jordan Pickford. That Everton failed to muster a chance worthy of the name in the ensuing 11 minutes plus five of stoppage time tells you everything you need to know about a team going nowhere at the moment.

Judging by the first 40 minutes, this game bore many of the hallmarks of the stolid victory over Watford last month. Everton lacked potency going forward but you got the sense that they would have enough quality to produce something decisive at some point during the game to edge it. That wouldn’t have sated the Evertonian desire for a more satisfying all-round performance indicative of a team capable of achieving its aims this season but it would at least have delivered three points and got things moving in the right direction following the disappointment at Bournemouth.

Richarlison and Bernard were looking fairly lively in the early going, the former going on a driving run in the fifth minute before whipping a curling shot narrowly after the crossbar. Lucas Digne then tested Henderson for the first time in the 17th minute with a shot towards the near post that the keeper successfully parried away.

Kean, meanwhile, was ploughing a lone and often fruitless furrow up front, starved of service to the point that when he did receive the ball outside the box and Gylfi Sigurdsson was arguably in a better position to his right, he elected to have a crack from distance and ballooned a shot high into the Park End.

Bernard’s nutmeg of Chris Basham and dance along the byline forced one of 12 corners that Everton would have on the day but they failed to really test the visitors with a single one of them, often because the usually productive Digne seemed incapable of beating the first man with most of them while he despatched his only opportunity from a direct free-kick straight into the defensive wall.

Sheffield United, meanwhile, earned their first set-piece in the 40th minute and embarrassed Everton by scoring with it in painfully predictable fashion. Pickford, perhaps blinded by the sun and put off by a bump by the totally unmarked Callum Robinson, barely got glove on the wickedly-delivered corner and it bounced in off Mina.

The Blues needed a quick response and almost got their reward for lovely work from Kean three minutes later who clipped a teasing cross to Richarlison in front of goal but the Brazilian, who has scored more difficult headers already this season, couldn’t get enough power or accuracy to steer a gilt-edged chance past the goalkeeper.

With little change to the pattern in the first few minutes of the second period, Silva made his first two changes, taking off Bernard and Schneiderlin and putting on Iwobi and Cenk Tosun in their place. Everton won successive corners on their next foray forward and Kean popped up on the end of a loose ball as it dropped near the goal but Henderson was out smartly to block his shot behind from close range.

By the time of the obligatory (and still mystifying) introduction of Theo Walcott with 20 minutes left, Everton had simultaneously become increasingly desperate but less and less effective going forward despite the plethora of attackers on the field. Time and time again, the tactic was to loft cross-field balls out to the flanks where, if the ball didn’t go over the head of the intended target, the opposition defence would either force them back or easily deal with the resulting cross.

It was mind-numbing in its repetitive futility and only Iwobi, schooled at Arsenal where so many attacks are orchestrated in and around the penalty area, seemed willing to try and thread things through the centre of the pitch, at least for the sake of variety. Whereas a team of greater resolve and psychological fortitude might still have rallied in the final stages, Everton were a broken side in terms of spirit by that stage and a half-empty Goodison saw the contest peter out to a depressing conclusion.

All teams have bad days and suffer unexpected results from time to time, especially in the Premier League. The problem is that Everton haven’t actually had a really good day in terms of their overall performance in any of their six games this season and they have been pretty awful in three of them. Disconcertingly, every game has been one you would have expected the Toffees to either win or do well in; the hard tests are still to come, starting next weekend against the Champions, Manchester City who scored as many goals in 18 minutes against Watford this afternoon (five) as Everton have all season.

This was a first defeat at home at a Goodison Park that has been a fortress since February and had witnessed a derby draw and six straight wins prior to today. Yet, in the context of recent Everton history, essentially since Roberto Martinez’s second season, it was hauntingly familiar. All it would take is defeat against Sheffield Wednesday in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday for the club to come full circle. Evertonians have been here so many times before and you wonder how many times the collective Blue hopes can be raised and then pulverised before apathy sets in again.

It shouldn’t be this way; this is an expensively-assembled but talented squad that is, as results at the tail end of last season showed, capable of so much more. Fans can argue over the merits of the system with which Silva persists on a weekly basis and individual selection but the fact remains that the Blues side that has played the last few games should not be losing 2-0 at home to Sheffield United, regardless of how well Chris Wilder's side acquitted themselves defensively.

Unfortunately, there are problems and under-performance all over the place at Everton at the moment that will take either significant effort or significant change to fix.

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Reader Comments (105)

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Steven Bencz
1 Posted 22/09/2019 at 03:48:20
Yup that sums it all. So effing depressing
Jerome Shields
2 Posted 22/09/2019 at 04:08:45
The problem is, that the writing was on the wall pre-season. Silva, though working hard with a new Head Coach, was struggling to get others to put in the work in and be motivated. The result was a poorly prepared and badly trained squad for the start of the season.

Silva's tactics can be blamed, but they have often morphed into ineffectiveness, when executed by an ill-prepared squad, who have players that appear to be still in pre pre-season re motivation. Players that are trying, are finding players unavailable for a pass and, once they do get someone available, that the receiving player ineffectively passes sideways, having missed any effective runs.

It got to the stage that passes are going backwards and not even sideways. Poor levels of concentration are resulting in unforced errors and poor attempts at recovery play.

Everton have been here before, so much so that the level of motivation resulting in this performance, could be described as 'the same old Everton'.

Of course, a lot will blame the Manager, as we all have done in the past, but will a new Manager make any difference to characteristics that have been so consistent over the years as far as Everton is concerned; they could be described as being part of their culture.

The sources of this attitude is perpetrators within the Club. I do not have inside knowledge, but there are individuals when in the Club who are detrimental to any progress that may be attempted and have been for some time, because such a Everton performance as we all witnessed today has deep rooted causes and is down to individuals,

The crisis is that those who could make a difference in the Club, could decide that the effort necessary is not worth it and their abilities would be realised by being applied else where. Everton will become a side that stays in the Premier League, keeping the perpetrators of its demise in jobs, which they are doing quite nicely at, while the long long-suffering Everton Supporter, like myself, can be inspired to place such posts as this on ToffeeWeb, until he drops off his perch, having never seen the Big Club glory days return.

Changing the Manager will make no different, other than give false hope that Everton will change, while nothing has actually changed inside the Club. The objective priority of Moshiri and Brands for this season should be to rid the Club of these parasites and maybe we might see antyimprovement next season.

A Cup run is vital to try and salvage something this season. Hopefully with Man City the next opponent in the Premier League, they may be motivated to get off their arses and do something.

Jim Bennings
3 Posted 22/09/2019 at 06:47:19
We are utter shite!

Can’t think of much more else worth saying so thought I’d keep it short.

Phil Rodgers
4 Posted 22/09/2019 at 07:37:43
I think it's time to accept that the good run of form at the end of last season was the exception to the rule.
Jim Bennings
5 Posted 22/09/2019 at 07:57:12
Yep agreed Phil!

The actual good run on form also was 99 percent only seen are Goodison, the away form was still frustrating with a shocking loss at Fulham.

The wins against United, Arsenal and Chelsea were primarily due to all three of those being abject on the day and proving what I already knew, the top six is there for the taking and was there for the taking last season but we just aren’t good enough sadly to take it.

James Byrne
6 Posted 22/09/2019 at 07:59:52
After being a blue all my life and a season ticket holder for many of those years, I struggle to even watch Everton on TV anymore. There is something wrong with this club deep inside it.

When you watch the likes of Norwich and Chelsea last week and then Leicester yesterday, those three games had everything you want on a Saturday afternoon. Loads of energy, fight, craft and to see young lads coming from the academy is superb. That goal from Maddison for Leicester yesterday just sums up what we have not got in any department.

Just to put salt in the wounds, when you see that utter clown Walcott come on as a sub, you know you are doomed. How on gods earth does Walcott make money playing football is a mystery.

Jim Bennings
8 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:07:50
Spot on James!

Other clubs at least have a bloody go, play with gusto and energy.

Watching Everton is like watching a movie you’ve seen 100 times, you know how it starts, you know the middle and you certainly know how it ends.

All becomes pretty mundane after a while doesn’t it?

James Byrne
9 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:21:26

I'll be out this morning with my lad watching some decent grassroots football. I'll get everything today that I don't get from watching that shower of shite at Everton.

David Pearl
10 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:42:08
Changing the manager will make all the difference!!
He took off our best two players and while l agreed with putting Tosun on he fed off scraps because the shape was ripped up.

Kean did absolutely nothing all game and we need patience with him, not throw him to the lions. Walcott also played well. The critics need to look at themselves for once. Why would Silva bring on Walcott for Coleman and then move Richarlison to the left leaving Walcott on his own? It just defies belief.

We play either DCL or Kean up front, even though we have proven scorers in Tosun, Walcott and Richarlison... all of whom l’d play ahead of the other two. Silva doesn’t seem to understand that the object of the game is to get 3 points,

Kean and Richarlison had bad games, plus Pickford. The rest of them did okay but the way we play, the way we move as a team is just all wrong. Enough now.

Next... and I’d have any of either Mourinho, Arteta or Moyes. Make the change now and we can still make the top 4/6. We wait and it it will be too late if he takes 2 months to sort it like he did last season. If we get The fat Spanish waiter l will throw myself of a cliff.

Bill Watson
11 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:46:05
Silva's time is obviously up and he needs to go sooner rather than staggering on, with more of the same, until Goodison once again becomes a toxic place.

This where Brands needs to justify his salary and use his knowledge and experience to identify a top class manager and then persuade him to come to Everton.

Talk of Arteta, Cahil and even Carsley, on other threads, is ridiculous and would be a huge gamble. We need someone with experience and a proven track record and we need him now.

Mike Connolly
12 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:47:47
I live on the Wirral and for years there have been two busses going to the match. Now there is a third going from the Swan. My point is the bus is jam pact with kids going the game (Our Future). They have never seen us win anything. So after watching that dross yesterday, how long will it be before the kids get fed up of watching us. I suggested to someone we may be better getting José Mourinho. He replayed that he may not be a good fit for the club.
The last good fit for the club was Moyes, when we had no cash. now that we have cash we're still going for managers with no pedigree. If the players could show the same commitment of our young fans we may be going places. But don't hold your breath
Tony Abrahams
13 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:48:17
Just like your posts Jim, which never tell us anything new!

Jerome, I think you might be onto something, but only Ferguson, and Coleman, are long-termers at finch-farm, then Snides who has been here for two and a half years, Pickford and Keane, are starting there third seasons at Everton, and we had six players starting yesterday who have only been at the club for 14 months or less.

We look over-coached, (some will say that is ridiculous) because we never see anyone trying anything different, especially Silva, whose insistence on getting the ball wide, being only half the problem, because once the ball goes wide, how many players do you see breaking their neck, trying to get into the box?

It’s flawed, just like the recruitment this summer has also been flawed, because it’s obvious Silva needed another centre-half, especially because he doesn’t trust Holgate, he needed another centre-forward, because it’s obvious he doesn’t fancy Tosun, and he needed another midfielder, because Schniederlin should be nowhere near the first team, especially considering that some people don’t even think he’s been the worst midfielder on the pitch in most games this season.

We are just not good enough in key areas at the minute, and I don’t know how Moise Kean, is going to learn how to adapt to the English game, playing with these tactics, and unless Silva changes track,I think that old saying about “failing to prepare”, is going to make this a horrible season, which makes Tuesday night’s game very, very important for us long-suffering fans.

Sam Hoare
14 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:48:43
Unpopular view but we were unlucky yesterday. We didn’t play well but we dominated shots, possessions, corners etc. Chris Wilder admitted so much. 2 goals from one shot on target says it all.

Trouble is, once again, we looked worse after going behind. We showed little character and Silva showed no ability to influence the match positively.

This squad is better than it was 2 years ago I think but there are big holes: A fast CB, an athletic high tempo midfielder and a goal scorer. Gbamin and Kean may fill 2 of those roles in time but aren’t currently.

Problems in the squad. Problems in the management. And little luck. All ingredients for another Everton weekend.

Silva won’t be sacked till Xmas at earliest. Brands will, rightly in my view, want to give his manager as long as possible to turn things around. But what credit he may have accrues at end of last year is all but spent. He needs to find something new, some way to get better out of these players. Or some better luck.

Christopher Timmins
15 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:51:21
The manager will be given a bit longer, October, to turn things around but he is under pressure and needs to make some big decisions. He is being let down by some of his key plays, Siggy and Richarlison in particular.

Terry Farrell
16 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:53:09
James, Walcott is experienced enough to know that when you are losing and he comes on as sub his job is to create a goal or score. He had 2 chances with the ball at his feet and the full back far enough off him to take him on and go past him and he bottled it and passed it back inside. He is finished at this level and I'm sure in his head he has retired from football and not even going through the motions anymore.
Tommy Surgenor
17 Posted 22/09/2019 at 08:59:40
For what it’s worth - I believe the walcott sun was justified.

We were getting a lot of joy down that side and Seamus delivery is worse than Tony Hibberts. The manager clearly thought that a winger would offer better delivery... unfortunately when he looked round we only had Theo there.

Theo and Seamus time is up but I could see the idea behind the sub, just havnt the quality to break teams down.

Our final ball is the worst I’ve ever seen

Dave Abrahams
18 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:07:39
Sam (14), I think many fans will agree with your assessment of the game, we were better than Sheffield, they were dreadful. We just didn’t play with any sort of plan or thoughtgoing into the game.

If Sheffield had been watched previously which I’m they were, then you don’t play a young slight striker against their ale house defending, you play DCL and the ungainly, unpredictable Niasse ( If they can find him, seems to be off the radar) to give them some fight and something to think about, this was said to me before the game by my young grandson.

We got worse as the game went on, only Delph wanted and went looking for the ball, he wasn’t great made two or three poor passes, didn’t they all, but he kept prodding and probing trying to make something happen.

Useless to have a go at the players, although my blood was boiling during and after the game at how bad most of them were, it’s how we are going to get the team back on track, starting at Sheffield Wednesday during the week.

As many have said it’s going to be a long hard season, made worse by the fact, for many of us, this offered to be a better than average season for the Blues, instead of a season were we will be suffering the blues.

Kevin Molloy
19 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:11:35
The major problem at this club is that our chief decision maker and holder of the purse strings is a fool. So even when Marco is shown the door, I have no confidence in his replacement, given it will be somebody chosen by Farhad, a guy who made his money hanging around with an oligarch, with all of the implications that go with that.
Mark Dunford
20 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:13:28
Agree. We’re on the edge of a crisis that could blow up very quickly in the next week. Over the summer we lost two key players and failed to replace one in defence while the two earmarked for the holding midfield role aren’t delivering for different reasons. It is already clearly going to be a disappointing league campaign and the prospect of a good cup run is poor compensation. We've thrown away at least 7 points against villa, Bournemouth and Sheff Utd. There is no realistic prospect of retrieving these against the top four or five. Two narrow home wins against the bottom two account for six points so no cause for optimism.
James Hughes
21 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:24:02
Not unlucky but unorganised, We looked disjointed and short of ideas.
Martinez was good at dominating possession and coming away with nothing and not much seems to have changed. That is back to back woeful performances and I hope we are getting it out of our system.
Mike Kehoe
22 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:28:23
I have no experience of playing at any level above Sunday league; I have never managed multi millionaire players with massive complex egos and minuscule intellects (although I have conquered Europe with Chester on prem manager); I have never negotiated terms with ruthless agents to try and stop my best players from seeking pastures new or to try and secure the services of talented mercenaries; I have never tried to guide and understand players whose performances betray all logical suggest only indifference and make me look incompetent for buying and selecting them; and I have never gone to work and had the pressure of 40000 people judging my every move, people who fancy themselves as experts in everything from body language and psychology to master tacticians and strategists but I think

It will take time and a few more windows to get better. We are inconsistent just like Citeh were in 2008: who remembers Emilio Blumer and Jo Silva? This season looks like a bag of shite already, the results so far have been typically Everton: we will probably twat Citeh just to spite ourselves. Everyone can see we lack quality up front, in midfield and a quick centre half. The quality that has left has not been replaced. If we are still shit when this has been rectified then sack him but until then try and have a bit of perspective. Better buckle up and strap yourselves in because RS are going to piss the league.

Jon Withey
23 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:32:51
Bournemouth was deflating but this is more depressing.

This is a squad that should be able to beat Sheffield Utd at home.

I really wish he'd stop playing Schneiderlin - maybe he did no worse than the rest - but he's almost a jynx now.

Frankly, we could do with a 0-0 just to instill confidence in the team that they can defend.

We've lost Gueye, Zouma and Silvas deputy since last season so I guess that is the obvious place to look for the lack of resilience.

Colin Hughes
24 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:34:21
The amount of garbage we have lost to in the last 12 to 18 months is unacceptable given the money we have spent,going back to last Christmas alone we have been done by Brighton,Southampton,Millwall,already relegated Fulham, one win in 20 premier league games, Aston Villa,Bournemouth now championship squad,Sheff United.This yesterday is not a one off shocker result it,s become the norm and surely its time for the club to change it's motto from only the best is good enough to let's just survive at all costs.
Rob Dolby
25 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:38:58
Did anyone not expect Sheff U to sit with 11 men behind the ball and hit us on the counter or set pieces.

We can't break teams down who sit deep. We can't change formation when we go a goal behind. Pickford was poor for both goals yesterday.

The manager wants us playing wide which is a strength of ours with the full backs and wingers we have. The problem then is we haven't got a half decent striker to make runs or score goals. On form Sigurdsson should be dropped.

Realistically we have 2 chances of winning something each year. If we go out of the cup on Tuesday and get smashed by City, Marcel will have to go and find us a new manager.

Eddie Dunn
26 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:40:49
I watched bits of it on my phone at a trade fair in London and then match of the day.
It is crystal clear that the players are (as Tony says) over-coached. The movement looks scripted. You could take snippets from all of our home games this season and splice them into the same film with very little editing.
Chris Wilder knew exactly how to stifle us and when the system fails the boss just throws on his usual subs hoping for a miracle.
Silva may well have lost Zouma and Gueye (and this was bound to have an effect) he may well have been failed by Brands in finding adequate replacements but the attacking format is flawed.
His dependence on two holding mids and his obsession with getting it wide early is impotent.
Wilder was very humble on match of the day, but every coach in the land (including Gary Monk) can work us out and stop us.
We have managed two narrow home wins against two stuggling sides.
Worse is to come...the manager needs to go now.
Steve Brown
27 Posted 22/09/2019 at 09:57:02
We have to start the League Cup tie with three men in central midfield. Schneiderlin, Delph and Davies should start given the injuries to Gbamin and Gomes. The right side didn't function in the second half so time to bring in Sidibe.

The front three? Young Kean isn't ready to lead the line, so I would switch Richarlison into the central striker position. Iwobi and Bernard playing wide. But the team is so lacking in confidence that it might not matter who plays frankly.

David Pearl
28 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:08:57
Jon, MS was our best player yesterday along with Bernard. The problem for me is with how Silva gets his width. Too much space between full back and winger.

Steve, I’d go with that team suggestion... not holding my breath on anything other than the 4231 though.

Raymond Fox
29 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:20:39
DCL should have started that game, we knew how Utd would play the game and yet an inexperienced Kean was picked, not good.
You do have to give credit to the oppositions manager in many games though, obviously their not stupid and target your playmakers in any way they can, Utd came for a draw and got lucky.

We lost two of our best players from last season and as far as I can see we have lesser players filling those positions, again not good.
We were looking a good side at the end of last season, we lose Gueye and Zouma and you can certainly see the difference.
Don't we always lose our best players though, yes I know Zoomer wasn't ours to lose, but its this fact along with not being able to attract the real stars of the game the two main reasons while I have little faith that we ever be a bona fide top six club again.

You can change the manager as many times as you like but in the end its the quality of the players that ultimately decides how good you really are.
I'm not dismissing the managers role far from it, all the top teams have both a top manager and top players, unfortunately we have neither.

John Kavanagh
30 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:20:48
It's an old adage but games are won or lost in midfield. We don't really have one, so the results come as no surprise. Two defensive mids covering shaky central defenders while a third playing forward as a number 10 just goes through the motions between games for the mighty Iceland. Meanwhile all play is restricted to a couple of two metre strips on the sidelines. The vast area in between is treated as if it was a minefield.

The purpose of our get it wide tactic is to provide lots of crosses that either don't get past the first defender or sail yards over the heads of our forwards. The best forwards in the world would fail to score at Everton. And if by some fluke you do manage to score - you get subbed and dropped for the next game.

Meanwhile our academy teams continue to perform well, despite changes in personnel. Yet few of our talented youngsters are considered good enough to even sit on the bench whilst Walcott, Sigurdsson, Schneiderlin and (sadly) Coleman consistently under perform.

The responsibility for all of the above lies with the manager, who is at least consistent. As a serial loser.

Alan McKie
31 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:24:51
You do not even have to go to the match these days. The season is already laid out before a ball is kicked. The pre season is awful, we do not recruit to fill the glaring holes in our team, CF and CH. Those we do recruit are usually injured or need time to get up to speed. We start badly, then go on a reasonable run. Lose in the league cup, a trophy that we should be looking to win. Flirt with the prospect of relegation, but get sufficient points to stave it off. Have a favourable draw in the FA cup only to bottle it. It's spring around the corner and we play some decent footy until European qualification is within our grasp, only to bottle it, because of our wretched away form. Finish 7th 8th 9th and think about what might have been. Then we think next season will be ours with a decent transfer window. Only the RS still beat us, we don't recruit a CF or CH. Then we see Walcott warming up to save the day!!!!! One day I hope to be proved wrong, but by then I could well be 6 foot under.
Martin Mason
32 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:28:45
I love this from one of today's papers. "Not for the first time, just as Everton think they are turning a corner they find themselves in a cul-de-sac."
Joe McMahon
33 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:37:02
Martin@32, sadly that has been the story for the past 25 - 30 years. Maybe this is why the capacity for the new stdium in ?? years time is only 52k, as lets face it will it ever see CL football?
Rob Hooton
34 Posted 22/09/2019 at 10:55:22
David, we don’t know what team Silva will play on Tuesday but we sure as hell know the formation!
Brian Harrison
35 Posted 22/09/2019 at 11:07:10
The next 3 games could go a long way to deciding Silva's fate, Sheffield Wednesday in the cup then Man City followed by Burnley away. They started brightly for the opening 20 minutes playing quick open football, but failing to score they got more frustrated. Then as always happens to this team they conceded from a corner, reminded me of one of Leeds corners back in the 60s when Jack Charlton used to stand on the goal line and the inswinging corner was hit with pace.

But even at half time I still believed if we get 1 then we will go onto win, but as the game wore on gone had gone the quick passing from the start of the game. Instead it became slow and predictable, and seemed our only tactic was get the ball wide to Coleman and Digne and hope that they would deliver enough good crosses to produce a goal. But that tactic that we have used a lot this season played right into the hands of Sheffield their big defenders were very comfortable defending crosses. Then they break away and score an undeserved 2nd which killed the game.

But this result on top of the others of late raise many questions. Silva lost his assistant and replaced him with Boa Morte has thad had an effect on our style of play? Why did we sell who most posters agree was our most influential player last year Gana Gueye who still had at least 2 years left on the contract. So we were under no pressure to sell, never mind what the player wanted the interests of the club come first.

My other concern is and I know most T/Ws wont agree is the position of our DOF Marcel Brands. Apart from Digne, I don't think his other buys are looking like the real deal. Bernard to weak and has little impact on games and 1 league goal from a front 3 player is woeful. Mina again doesnt fill me with any great confidence. Gomes good footballer but again lacks pace in a very pedestrian midfield. Kean this kid could be anything but to place such a burden on a 19 year old from another country is ridiculous. Any DOF would have recognised we needed a top class striker which he failed to land and there were these players available in the summer in Costa and Dzeko. But instead Brands put his faith in a young 19 year old and DCL who has struggled so far to score with any regularity.

Then we come back to Silva, who not for the first time this season when losing, threw on 3 attackers without any plan as to how to break down Sheffield. One of those attackers was Tosun who Silva had said along with Niasse is surplus to requirements, yet he brings him on instead of DCL who actually scored last week. So this to me smacks of a manager and assistant who have completely lost the plot. I know we had a similar set of results in the early part of last season and Silva turned it around I just hope he is capable of doing it again. But time is beginning to run out I fear.

David Pearl
36 Posted 22/09/2019 at 11:14:27
I wonder if Siggy is rested Tuesday and he tries Iwobi will it be in the hole or something different? Siggy has had some bad press on here recently but the space between him and other midfielders is down to him trying to get close to the striker so he isn’t isolated...because our other wingers and chasing back to our own box.

People will always slag Walcott, Schneiderlin (DCL, Coleman and now Sigurdsson) but for me it’s more to do with how they are being asked to play. Tosun can score if given the opportunity. Just a little bit frustrating being a blue seeing us spend so much money and getting the same results. This after years of having next to nothing. Although Moyes lost Rooney and got Cahil and Marcus Bent in and finished 4th. Huh...

Phil Lewis
37 Posted 22/09/2019 at 11:47:57
Sigurrdson is a liability.We will get nowhere with his continued inclusion. People are now cottoning on to what I said about him from the word go. He is lightweight. He doesn't punish the opposition. I have yet to see him dominate a game. He lacks creativity, running aimlessly around like a headless chicken...oh yes, he has one saving grace, he's not bad at taking corners.
He had a good World Cup with Iceland a while back which generated interest in him. But Spurs had the right idea getting shut. As I recall, we were the only mugs to follow up Swansea's inflated price tag.
If we had Pele at centre forward, he would look average, starved of service from our inadequate number 10.
Ken Kneale
38 Posted 22/09/2019 at 11:53:30
James @6. You are spot on. There is a malaise and illness affecting Everton that is decades rooted, regularly fed and watered by the Kenwright regime of playing underdog and now in full blossom since Moyes demise. This cowardly, clueless manager is ideal to perpetuate the problem. He has to go and soon and let someone in to shake the whole place up by managing those above and below. Such individual has to be a true leader. I am not hopeful our sorry board have the foresight to make such appointment
Raymond Fox
39 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:06:03
Just to add although we played poorly in the outfield, Pickford should have done much better with the two goals we conceded.
He had an element of an excuse for the first goal, it was obviously a planned corner on their part to play an in swinging corner and try to block the keeper which they did successfully. he should have got a fist properly to it though.

How come we are powder puff when we earn a corner, I have no hope of us scoring!

Tony Everan
40 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:12:06
Lyndon, the pain and disappointment is perfectly summed up.

What on earth is going on at Everton ?

The top 6 and even 3rd and 4th places are wide open this season. Leicester will have a go. We should really be one step ahead of Leicester based on last years progress.

Joao Sousa going has knocked Silva for six. His right hand man, and part of his long term plans has gone. Silva is a little boy lost at the moment without him. Our teams are poorly set up and disorganised, predictable.

Silva has lost his important confidante and pre match discussions to plan. At the moment Silva is nothing without Joao Sousa.

Maybe Joao Pedro Sousa was the talented part of this pairing all along? Or at the very least an irreplaceable part of it.

Mike Doyle
41 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:12:31
John 30] I recall when the use of the “diamond” midfield formation was being discussed, Wiley old Arsenal coach said it really didn’t matter - what did matter was to ensure you were not outnumbered/outmuscled/outplayed in midfield because that it where top level football matches are won and lost.
In fairness though if Don has seen a mismatched central defence pairing of the type that we are persisting with he may have had a different view.
Francis van Lierop
42 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:19:42
There are a few things to say about yesterday's game, the first it being a major disappointment.
The first that Sheff U created havoc with their first corner, something we didn't achieve all match with the 12 or so we had.
Jordan Pickford, who has been playing well thus far this season, should have, at least, tipped the ball away, taking the danger away.
The second, and as noted by others, we are too easy to defend against.
Digne & Coleman are there to cross the ball, which played right into the Blades hands.
We need a central midfielder who can make runs forward.
It's no secret that Marco Silva tried to get Abdoulaye Doucouré from Watford in the summer.
That would give us other attacking options.
Anyone remember Gunter Netzer?
That's what probably Silva has in mind.

Other than that, we were unlucky. We did have a few good chances, but alas it was not to be.

No need for panic yet, but we drastically have to improve!

Phil Lewis
43 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:23:59
Can somebody please explain big Duncan's role to me? It surely can't be anything technical, because his whole game was fire in the belly, blood and guts stuff. Credible at the time, but long since vanished, in fact inadmissible in the modern game. So what is he exactly? A very expensive cheerleader? could only happen at Everton!! Jobs for the boys!
Simon Crosbie
44 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:36:11
How many people experienced that feeling of dread just after the Blades were awarded their first corner? How many supporters sensed immediately that it would result in a goal? And did that type of corner surprise anyone - drop it into the six-yard box, get in front of Pickford, every chance it will find a way in... The problem is, I suspect, that opposition managers have worked out Everton's incompetence at defending corners. Not only that, being shaky in corner situations, can feed into the confidence of the players and the crowd. It's no longer a question of this problem being sorted out; it is more a question of why it has not been sorted out already. Silva, to me, is the Parson's egg when it comes to coaching and tactics; he is good in parts. The team can play attractive football and dominate possession but to what end? The parts where he falls down appear to be basic things like defending corners and set pieces. I would add to that list the taking of corners as well - we have excellent corner takers however the set-up in the box is very one-dimensional. As for our attack, we have talented players in the final third but the cohesion needed to score on a regular basis is sadly lacking. I hate the idea of changing managers frequently but I think if things don't improve dramatically then Silva might be headed for the door.
Jerome Shields
45 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:47:22

He carries a kit bag about, mouths, looking as if he is doing something normally moving into view behind the Manager. The football equivalent of a Clipboard operator.

Just my observations, with no inside knowledge

Rob Halligan
46 Posted 22/09/2019 at 12:53:47
One of two people on this thread talking about pre season. For me, we play the most ridiculous games possible. FFS, a bloody Kenyan or Tanzanian team. Ok,I understand that due to our sponsorship with Sportpesa, this is probably part of the agreement, but even then, we play the majority of the kids in this one. Then it's games against poor Austrian teams, or wherever, before we play lower league teams in this country. A decent Sunday league team could beat most of the teams we play. We even play in meaningless tournaments, playing 2 games in one day!! These games are not beneficial at all.

So is all this a problem, I don't know? When it comes to the first few games of the season, we have players who have had next to no pre season training. We have new players trying to bed in and gel with new team mates. There is no way new players can understand how our established and international players play, because these international players are away, and even when they come back they are given a few weeks break. So, in other words, does our "proper pre season training" start in the first few premier league game?

Regarding yesterday, in my opinion, you will never see a more negative team than Sheffield United. They had no interest in attacking, so why on earth did Silva feel the need to play both Schneiderlin and Delph? And FFS Silva, ditch the bloody zonal marking. Just watching Goals on Sunday, and for the first goal there three Sheffield players left totally unmarked in our six yard box, and all at the far post, while we've got six players in the six yard box and all looking at the ball, not one is looking at the three attackers behind them.That is absolutely abysmal defending. What's wrong with the good old fashioned man to man marking, with big on big and little on little. You man mark your player and block his run on goal. Also, had we had a defender on the post, he would have been able to clear the deflection off Mina.

Steavey Buckley
47 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:05:19
Anyone who follows football understood that Sheffield United came to park the bus to out muscle Everton which they did to such an extent they gained all 3 points. Silva's game plan should have had as many attackers as possible on the pitch from the start in the hope one of them could score, which they didn't. I always dread corners because Pickford is useless dealing with high balls into the box, and Sheffield knew that, that's why they scored from their first corner. I would like to see the under 23's seen as the Everton second eleven not a team just to play in the EPL2. So at the start every season players are picked on their potential and merit to play in the first team not just a player to make up the numbers in the under 23s.
Phil Lewis
48 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:07:38
I remember Gunter Netzer, a fabulous player. He was a long haired blonde German International midfielder. A millionaire playboy, Germany's version off field of George Best, was probably why he was often overlooked by their national team. Incredible vision. He could release 'long-range missile' passes with incredible accuracy. Sheffield Utd had a similar style of player at the time, Tony Currie, who was capped a few times. A great player, but not in Netzer's class. Alan Hudson of Chelsea, another vey underrated player, also had a touch of the 'Netzer's' about his game.

br>One of the best nights I recall at Goodison was when we beat Netzer's Munchengladbach on penalty in the then European Cup. It was an intruiging battle of contrasting styles, with Netzer spraying these breathtaking pinpoint passes all over the park, compared to the short ball, quick fire one-two gymnasium football of Ball, Kendal and Harvey. It was an honour to be present and witness the spectacle of breathtaking football. Thanks for mentioning Netzer I was a big fan, you brought back great memories.

Edmund Bennett
49 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:08:55
I agree with Mike@12. I took my two young boys to the game yesterday, their first at Goodison. We live in London and we came as a ‘treat’ for their birthdays. We left feeling completely deflated with neither boys expressing any desire to revisit a home match! Both my boys love football but we have been to three games now, Crystal Palace twice and this shambles yesterday and we haven’t seen Everton score a goal. Thank god we have a decent kit otherwise the boys would be completely put off!!

My point is the club has a huge fan base, there were loads of kids there yesterday no doubt their mum or dad earmarked this as 3 points. What we got was an insipid, naive and spineless performance. My first home game with my dad was a 3 - 1 victory over Luton Town. My kids first home game and Everton are booed off! The club should refund everyone for yesterday.

My local team is Dulwich Hamlet, £12 adults free for this kids. At least they can do the basics like defend set pieces and are enjoyable to watch. With respect to Dulwich that is probably the level of club Silva should be managing, he is clueless!

Stephen Davies
50 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:09:23
As a matter of interest take a look at which team is the top of the Portugese League.
Then Google who the Manager is.
Any coincidence as to why recent results are happening.

Dave Abrahams
51 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:12:34
Stephen (50), I could guess but couldn’t you just tell us.
Dave Abrahams
52 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:21:32
Rob (46), absolutely spot on with your description of Everton’s defending for the corner from which Sheffield scored, six of them right at the front of the six yard area, no talking amongst them, no directions from Pickford, no one on the line and three Sheffield players at the back of the yard area rubbing their hands waiting for a high cross to come in. Comical defending by comical players all under the direction of a comical coach.
Jerome Shields
53 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:25:18
David #10

Thank you for your analysis of Silvas performance , which I believe to correct and geniune. I did post on hearing of the team selection that Silva was setting up a team to get through, with the cup competitions in mind. I thought at the time it would play into the hands of a team that would set up shop, as it did. But I have also felt that the squad had been unprepared and poorly trained from previous matches, which continued in this match.

I do believe that Silva works hard and that the intention to give him a three years contract , was to allow time for him and Brands to turn around a underachieving Club, with ingrained and established problems.

The difficulty to do so is because Moshiri to get the Everton deal over the line had to agree to a deal, that was the equivalent of buying a house with vacant possession. Money ways he is on to a winner in that he got the Club cheaper and when he does get vacant possession the Club, will be worth a lot more, if it stays in the Premiership.

Unfortunately he go a Everton regime that has not win anything and is unlikely to do so.

Not only was Moshiri the only buyer, he found that Silva was the only Manager to want to take the job. Brands was the real Brain wave. But he underestimated the influence the old regime would still, have, and Moshiri did get a costly incite into how capable they really are.

Silva did manage a purple patch at the end of last season and is still capable of one and maybe two patches this season , as long as relegation panic does not set in. There is still a job to be done off the field at Everton and maybe even internal resistance to it. I believe that we have to stick with the Silva , Brands and Morshiri team to get it done and performance will force a change and deeper analyse into the real problems within Everton.

A new Manager will be faced with the same remit and who suitable is going to want the job?

Stephen Davies
54 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:31:30
Message for Steve Fern.
Steve Joau Pedro Sousa.
Do you think him leaving has had a bigger impact than what was thought of at the time ( see my earlier post about the team currently putting Benfica Sporting & Porto noses out of joint) and how he compares to Morte?
I think Silva relied on him an awful lot and is clearly missing his influence.
How would this affect the team?
Chris Hockenhull
55 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:44:01
Phil (48). I too was a Netzer fan as a boy. He and Ball had some sort of admiration society going for each other so it was interesting to see them both out there at Goodison on that rainy November evening in 1970. I recall a few years later...72/73? Netzer destroying England at Wembley in either a Euro Nations game or whatever.
Brent Stephens
56 Posted 22/09/2019 at 13:55:58
So much said that I agree with. If I can just add my loathing of those cross-field balls - slow to get to their target (and often too high anyway). The ones that mean you are no further upfield, just on the opposite flank. That's if the receiver has time to control the damn thing. No gain, and everything to lose (possession, time, the element of surprise).

And those throw-ins in their half need to go forward, not back. If we retain possession, great. If we don't retain possession, the pressure is on the opposition on and around the penalty area. The same for free kicks - forward not back.

And the occasional long ball out of our defence will keep their defence unsure as to what's coming next and how high to keep their line.

Rob Marsh
57 Posted 22/09/2019 at 14:15:21
Jerome # 53

If Sheff Wed out muscle/think us on Tuesday, Man City just plain out everything us and Burnley do what Bournemouth did to us; do you still think he should remain?

Jay Wood

58 Posted 22/09/2019 at 14:24:08
It was mentioned in commentary yesterday that under Silva in nearly 50 competitive games (not counting friendlies) nobody has conceded more goals from dead-ball situations in the same period than Everton. Other than away to Lincoln in the LC, he has yet to see his team win having conceded the first goal.

The numbers mentioned were 20 and 21 (can't recall which number applied to which stat). Both stats, then, indicate this happens in 40% of games played under Silva - 4 in 10 games.

Right there you have two answers to the key question why aren't we showing signs of progress under Silva.

It could be argued conceding so frequently from dead-ball situations is a systemic error that should have, by now, been addressed and eradicated on the training ground. That appeared to be the case in the closing games of last season. Not so this.

The goals conceded in our last five games now reads 2-2-2-3-2 (as some wag commented yesterday when I posted those numbers, that reads like the formation we finished yesterday's game with!!!).

The inability to - at best - only get a draw, but never win having conceded the first goal, is more a mental and motivational problem. It's also tactical as Silva's substitutions and attempts at formation change simply never recover a losing situation into a winning way.

There is no mileage in bewailing the loss of Gana (big miss that he is), the inability to secure the return of Zouma, the injuries to Gbamin and Gomes. It's a squad game and change of personnel over the course of a season is inevitable. You go with what you have.

We are told Silva is a hard-working and innovative coach, a great training ground coach. We are not privy to that. That may well be the case. But whatever he is doing on the training ground is not transmitting to the match day pitch. Again.

What we are privy to are the match day performances. And time and again we don't see much evidence of Silva managing and influencing things in-game to our benefit.

Too often we see schoolyard tactics and substitutions from losing positions, based on the belief 'if I throw on as many forwards as I can, without regard to the balance or formation to the whole team, I could luck out and we might grab a goal'.

Make no mistake, given our fixture list, this has been a crap start to the season. The poor results crank up the pressure on manager and players alike. This is a mini-crisis which - by next weekend - could quickly escalate into a full-blown crisis should we get eliminated by Wednesday (on Tuesday!) then tanked by City at home.

I'm not one advocating sacking Silva. Still too premature for me. But Paul Tran getting 6/1 at half-time yesterday on Silva getting sacked (now the shortest odds of any PL manager to be sacked at odds-on) may well prove a shrewd punt.

He HAS to do better, starting this week.

Rob Marsh
59 Posted 22/09/2019 at 14:34:56
Jay # 58

There's just too much of an obvious pattern set now to our form for me and when you couple that to his coaching of the game yesterday?

He had run out of ideas yesterday and put all his forwards on and we were still blunt, 5 of them couldn't make any impact against a newly promoted and nervous Sheff Utd.

I think the players are bemused by him now, it's time!

Jay Wood

60 Posted 22/09/2019 at 14:43:38
I can understand that view, Rob. Those ratios don't look good.

We are reaching a tipping point. Do we (again!) sit tight with a manager hoping he comes good? Or do we go bold and make the change now so we can salavage the season rather than continue to drift as we are?

It's such a tricky time of the year to recruit anyone decent other than in a caretaker role. That said, a very good manager in the recently sacked Marcelino from Valencia who is available.

Colin Wordsworth
61 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:04:17
For all the apologists of silva, when when had our appalling run over last Xmas, weren't both Zouma and Gueye playing? As I see it, the problem is the style of football and the lack of structure. How much has our style improved? Have we improved since Martinez despite the money spent?, are we a better team than under dare it Big Sam?. the answer is no! and this is now his team. We have to be ruthless, as a manager Silva looks the part but he is distinctly lacking. Let's be ambitious and at least try for the best available. Jose or Wenger anyone?
Rob Marsh
62 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:09:33
Jay # 60

I don't want EFC to become some kind of "Apprentice" TV show with a "You're Fired!" mentality.

You have though hit the nail on the head, do we sit tight or go bold? Stick or twist? I've no doubt the club will not knee jerk on this and will think things through.

There's another way to look at this, if we did send him off, would whoever takes over (be that maybe Unsy as a caretaker), will following results be any worse than they are now? This is absolutely not an easy decision, but I do believe indecision could do much damage as we watch Silva try to change the spots on a leopard.

Even Unsy as a caretaker will generate some energy and enthusiasm above what we have now.

Suppose Silva does improve results, but not really impressively and we just lumber on with doubts about him, it's waisted time. I'm in the act now camp.

Derek Cowell
63 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:13:03
From stats on motd last night I saw that Watford had more shots and more possession in their 0-8 defeat against City than Sheffield Utd had against us! Its weird being an Evertonian. Every game is like groundhog day and is so utterly predictable. I was unable to follow yesterday's game but on checking the result on TW I was not in the least surprised, just serially disappointed! Ive decided just to be inevitably disappointed this season as opposed to totally gutted in ruined weekends like before coz this team is just not worth the emotion being spent on it. I expect the same on Tuesday and even worse next weekend. City will get at least 4 against us, if not more! As always I hope I am wrong!
Rob Marsh
64 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:24:10
Derek # 63

That's the cherry on the cake!

Watford get murdered in cold blood by the best team in the land (maybe in the world?) and still put up a better fight than us who play a newly promoted team that is lacking skill and nervous.


James Hughes
65 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:43:16
Apologies but completely off topic. I have half an eye and ear on the hammers v manure game. All they go on about is how poor Manure are, no mention of the hammers. Neville is not an impartial pundit

Oh and the hammers are now 2-0 up and Neville says they deserve the lead. It's just bollocks

Mike Doyle
66 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:50:07
In other news. Just chatting to one of my neighbours (a Man Utd season ticket holder). He reckons OGS will be gone before Silva.
Jim Bennings
67 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:50:52
Hey don’t forget though there’s always the fact that we are in transition.

Everton, the club that seem to have been permanently in transition, so long in transition that during that time Leicester have won two promotions and the Premier League title, played in the Champions League, all while Everton are still in transition hahahahaha.

Hilarious really, what’s the Latin term for “Club that never moves forward”?

Eddie Dunn
68 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:51:04
Colin- very good point...people blame individuals week-in, week-out but it's the system.
The players must be extremely frustrated at the whole mess and I am sure that they could all play much better given the right structure.
I would love to know what the players think.
Incidentally, despite his positive play, am I the only person to be embarrassed at the behaviour of Richarlison?
The rolling around on the deck, the fake head injuries..I could go on. Does he realise that referees watch tv? A disgrace of a player, sulky, petulant and a cheat.
James Hughes
69 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:55:32
JIm - just for you

ut usque mane

Anthony Newell
70 Posted 22/09/2019 at 15:59:55
Everton don't suit foreign managers and this one is as gormless and dough eyed as they come

Can you imagine Silva being rollicked and sent to the stands, he doesn't have enough fire in his belly for that to happen

If we cannot obtain a manager with a trophy laden CV the next best thing is Sean Dyche. I can only hope the conversations about 'protecting' this seasons investment in players has already started

Raymond Fox
71 Posted 22/09/2019 at 16:01:29
I've no doubt that we will play better when City come to town, we will probably lose anyway but its against the so called lesser teams who shut up shop that we struggle most.
Its the lack of attacking quality when teams don't give us any space that finds us out, we haven't a Aquaro, Kane, Mane, Jesus, Sterling, Salah, I could go on and that's not even mentioning the midfield!
Scott McMurdy
72 Posted 22/09/2019 at 16:04:38
The last 3 games all the teams have played with 2 up front and we cannot cope with it

This needs addressing, as we play 4231

The 10 becomes pivotal and he is not good enough

Sam Hoare
73 Posted 22/09/2019 at 16:19:23
Jim@67 the main reason we always seem to be in transition is we keep hiring new managers.

5 in the last 4 years!

And guess what happens if we fire Silva?! More transition!!

The best clubs in the league have stability. This is why Brands will give Silva as much time as he possibly can. But if we do get a new manager expect it to be one in Silva’s image; young, coaching oriented, pressing football. Brands will want to keep the transition as small as possible by maintaining a continuity of approach. I reckon Gallardo of River Plate would be an interesting and (perhaps too) bold choice.

Anthony Newell
74 Posted 22/09/2019 at 16:23:50

If Brands came out and said 'Silva is very much part of a 3 year plan and we look forward to his involvement in that'

How would you feel about that stability?

Nick White
76 Posted 22/09/2019 at 16:36:42
Good article Lyndon as ever, thanks.

I thought the turning point this season was going to be The Villa defeat. We went with an attacking line up at Lincoln and then again against Wolves. We then reverted back against Bournemouth. Starting to look more and more like Martinez with possession but little end product combined with a chocolate fire guard defence.

Not sure who comes in next but agree with an earlier comment that it must be a proven successful manager who gets Everton. No idea how we can make that happen!

Jerome Shields
77 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:14:19
Rob# 57

Silva has to make a shape over the games you mention. Heading into the relegation zone and out of a Cup will be panic time, so anything can happen. Though Brands will be involved this time,

I am trying to be positive, that Silva will turn things around and Brands will steady things up a bit, but I see where you are coming from, A lot will depend on attitude of players and how they react to this defeat,

Sam Hoare
78 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:18:22
Anthony, right now I’d not feel so good! But broadly speaking I’d understand the logic and for a long time I’ve been an advocate of Silva’s.

I don’t think Brands would handcuff himself in that way but I wouldn’t be surprised if behind closed doors he’s told Silva he will have as much leeway as possible to correct this poor start.

The margins are small. We should have won yesterday despite the performance. Sheffield somehow scored 2 goals from only one chance in the whole 90 whilst we missed a bundle of decent openings. If we had won we’d be 4th now. We didn’t and rightly we are frustrated. I’m less convinced by Silva now than I was 2 months ago but I’d not be that surprised if he turned it around like he did last year.

Jay Wood

79 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:27:22
Sam: "Sheffield somehow scored 2 goals from only one chance in the whole 90 whilst we missed a bundle of decent openings."

Sam, we really didn't. We barely created a scoring opportunity, never mind 'miss a bundle of decent openings'.

It was just awful.

Paul Tran
80 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:37:00
You're right, Sam, the margins are always small. Yet we keep landing on the wrong side of them.

Silva 'turned it round' last season, but only when the pressure was off after our season was over. What was he doing when the team went missing for two months?

I don't care about possession/running stats. I want of team that plays with purpose, creates chances, maybe even scores some of them. If they press, then press as a team without leaving each other isolated.

I'm sure Silva wants better. The question is, can he do better, will he do that consistently?

Underperforming players isn't an abstract thing, it's something the manager has to sort out and maintain.

If we'd not gone through Martinez, Koeman & Allardyce in quick succession, what would you think? That's the acid test. If you're not good enough, you're not good enough. If there's no evidence it'll get better without clutching straws, it isn't going to end well.

Trevor Peers
81 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:39:08
Silva is so entrenched in Moshiri's thoughts it will take a an even more disastrous run of games than we've already had to unseat him from the managers job.

If we have a mini revival before or after Christmas his job will be safe. Only the threat of relegation will be enough to get him removed, our mediocrity is secured for a few more seasons never fear. The chances of Europe or winning any silverware is however zero.

Colin Wordsworth
82 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:41:41
Sam, the season was over when he 'turned it around', Schneiderlin was playing for a transfer and so was Gueye and we played above ourselves as a consequence. We still won zilch and didn't make Europe. We haven't improved despite playing 3 teams so far who are among the favourites for relegation. Our run of fixtures from now are distinctly more difficult, we need to be organised, create and take our chances. As it is we are defo failing on the first two and struggling on the third. We're not even par points wise this season, could we be doing much worse?
Phil Lewis
87 Posted 22/09/2019 at 17:45:54
Netzer was some player Chris wasn't he? I'm happy if one of ours now can find a blue shirt from 5 yards never mind 50!!
I was blessed that from watching Everton as a 7 year old, by the time I'd reached my 30's, I'd witnessed the successful era's of Young, Vernon, Labone etc. Then Ball, Kendal, Harvey etc. Then later Steven, Southall, Reid, Linacre etc. Plus a host of other wonderful players, too many to mention, all winning trophies. World beaters. I feel heartily sorry for any Everton fan in their 30's now who has seen absolutely no success. (with the exception of the '95 Cup win)
That track record is criminal and the main guilty party has to be the board and successive management.
The fans have never deserted the club, staying Faithfull through thick and thin. Yet year after year they are let down. Kicked in the teeth. It is early doors yet, but the signs don't look good. The mid-week Cup match, will hopefully prove the turning point.
N. B. Mr. Silva, the patience of the Goodison faithful is wearing exceedingly thin. Never mind new stadiums, let's get the job done on the Park right now!
Sam Hoare
88 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:00:17
Jay@79 We definitely created more openings than them; whichever way you look at it! Bit more clinical and we win that game 9 times out of 10. We were unlucky, no doubts about that; Wilder and many Sheffield fans have admitted as much.

Paul@80, yes it is a managers job to make sure that the small margins go your way. Currently they are not and that is why I would not be too upset if Silva were to leave tomorrow. But I don't see that happening. He'll be here till xmas at the least and I believe we can and will do better than we have in the last few games; we couldn't do much worse!

Colin @82-85; the season wasn't over. Many would have you believe that we were relegation bound. It's true that our best form seemed to come against better opposition when the pressure/expectation to win is off a little and that is an issue. There looks to be real lack of mentality to step up to the plate; a lack of resilience. Having still not come back from a losing position in the league worries me greatly.

Paul Tran
89 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:08:23
You're right Sam, I can see him here till the end of the season. He was a streaky manager at Watford and Hull, he's been a streaky manager here so far, with better players.

I'm like the elastic band thats snapped with Silva. Teams often play like their managers appear. Ours is too often slow, ponderous, uninspiring, risk-averse and rigid, unable to fight adversity.

Tony Marsh
90 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:13:22
Go and get Rafa. I don't care any more a bout that ex-Kopite stuff. We can't afford to snub good managers because of LFC connections. We aren't on the same level as Liverpool. We are nowhere near them and thier fans now pity us. We might still think we have a rivalry with LFC but we don't we are not good enough to be thier rivals.

Here on Merseyside the Everton fan base has had its soul ripped out by the Twats in charge of the club. It now got to the point for the first time in living memory there is NO football related banter anymore. Evertonians simply don't have the Ammo to fight with. I mean, what can we say these days? Kopites are Gobshites, which I despise. We used to own Anfield another belter.

We are finished here in this City and its getting worse. Thank Kenwright, you daft Romantic dreamer.
Sam Hoare
91 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:14:13
Paul, I was expecting A LOT better this year though I do think Brands has not helped in the transfer market. Difficult to know whose choices decided things but there are some serious gaps down the spine of the team, for example if we had got Haller (who linked play really well again for West Ham today despite not scoring) I think we'd have 5 more points and be in the top 4. Ifs and buts don't help, of course. I agree with you that the system looks faulty currently and Silva's intransigence is glaring.
Jay Wood

92 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:29:18
Sam @ 88.

Saying we 'definitely created more chances than them' is different from your original claim that 'we missed a bundle of decent openings'. We really didn't do the latter.

When did we genuinely work the goalkeeper? Not once. In the first half there was Kean's cross to Richarlison for the header that was easily gathered in by the stood up keeper.

In the 2nd half, Kean getting a smidgen of space on the right, quickly and easily smothered by the keeper.

Other than that, I'm struggling to recall anything else beyond the first half when Kean blazed high, wide and not so handsome into Row ZZ of the Park End and Richarlison's closer effort over the corner of the right hand post. In both cases Sigurdsson was available for a rolled in pass which would have been the better scoring opportunity.

As for Chris Wilder saying Everton should have won that game, I honestly think that was a touch of psychology to big up his own team for future games as much as a genuine statement of how the game played out.

In the second half at no time did we have any sustained pressure or quality into their box that remotely looked like getting us level.

It was awful.

Paul Tran
93 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:30:34
We don't know if we were in for Haller do we Sam? We were going to get that young defender from Chelsea, but that was scuppered when Luis left for Arsenal. I actually like Holgate, but Silva clearly doesn't.

On deadline day, I was excited at the idea of Richarlison, Iwobi and Kean interchanging up front, with DCL as an alternative tactical switch. Not happening so far, is it - is he frightened of all of them playing at once?

In mitigation, he has been unlucky with Gomes and particularly Gbamin getting injured. Remember Gbamin stating in the presser he wouldn't be ready for the first game? He still played him, didn't he?

Here's hoping.

Sam Hoare
94 Posted 22/09/2019 at 18:44:08
Jay@92 I guess ‘decent opening’ is a vague term but we were in promising attacking positions quite a lot and executed badly or made the wrong decision as I saw it.

As well as the ones you mention I remember Digne having a decent opportunity and Schniederlin and Siggy both having pops from the edge of the box. Not working the keeper doesn’t mean it wasn’t a half chance! Not clinical.

We definitely played worse once going behind which is not the first time.

Paul Jones
95 Posted 22/09/2019 at 19:32:27
Given we have England's current No 1 goalkeeper and experienced internationals in every position being completely unable to organise and defend the most basic of set pieces again makes me wonder what we do in pre-season training.

Rob Marsh
96 Posted 22/09/2019 at 19:35:15
Tony Marsh # 90

That just about sums up our relationship with our neighbours.

I once had an interesting conversation with one of them I'd only just met for the first time and he was decent lad, we first spoke about the two teams, form etc, players and expectations the normal stuff.

He then said "please don't take this the wrong way but I can't see why you support them, you're from Liverpool, a Scouser and you have a team in the city that's won everything and will win everything again, it's something to be proud of if your from here, it has the city name."

I flared up inside, is he taking the piss? He looked absolutely genuine waiting for the answer, I then though about it, something I've never really considered (philosophically) and said "I was born into it", I couldn't say we've won this or that compared to his team because we haven't (no ammo!). I'm feeling what you're feeling!

My seven year old nephew goes to PE and football at school in our kit, the problem is so do fifteen other boys in his class, but it's the LFC kit (no other blues), My nephew was coming home moody and we asked him why? He said he wants an LFC kit, he can't get a kick around and feels left out. He's a shy lad and is not likely to fight his way to get respect.

My sister, his mother said "your a blue like the rest of your family you don't want one of those shirts". I was standing there and said no let him have one, I took the view if he's sad in school this could ruin his progress and give him problems later on. I believe I've done the right thing for the kids personal well being.

How many other kids and blue families have had similar problems?

Sad isn't it.

Chris Leyland
97 Posted 22/09/2019 at 19:40:13
Tony Marsh - why is today worse from the 70’s and early 80’s (before we won a few things in the mid 80’s)? They’ve won 1 Champions League in the last 8/9 years. They used to win the league every year and won loads of European trophies in the 70’s/80’s.
Rob Marsh
98 Posted 22/09/2019 at 19:50:23
Chris # 97

I believe implied in what Tony has said "no ammo", if you were to put the trophy cabinets of both teams in the one room you'd quickly draw some conclusions to who's had the happier time regardless of when the trophies happen to have been won.

Paul Smith
99 Posted 22/09/2019 at 20:02:51
Brilliant thread btw, this lads. Pity we and our kin have to suffer so much.

Went through it as a kid in the 80's, it was worse because they feared us and never pitied us. Sympathy is better as a child than hate.

Still traumatised at 50. Fuckers!

Rob Marsh
100 Posted 22/09/2019 at 20:15:37
Paul # 99

When I went to my first match the other side had 4 leagues, 3 champions leagues, 2 league cups more and 1 less FA cup than us.

I'm not sure I can even say they were still in sight back then, but HK certainly had a go until the ban.

Joe McMahon
101 Posted 22/09/2019 at 20:30:30
Rob M (100) - the difference now is Everton have gone 25 years since winning a trophy. In that time we have played some of the worst football of any Everton team in our history, not won at Anfield for 20 years (a disgrace), and been so goal starved only 2 strikers since our last trophy have managed over 20 goals in a season.

Also (until we move into the public consultation stadium) our home ground is an antiquated relic with facilities from the 1970s, and our image in todays "modern era" of global appeal is awful, which hasn't been helped by the fact Everton have never played in the Champions League.

Like Tony M says there is no Ammo.

Paul Smith
102 Posted 22/09/2019 at 20:30:45
At least we could give it to them Rob and we mattered, today unless its derby day, we don't.

Our day will come of that I am convinced. Not with Marco, though.

Kevin Harnan
103 Posted 22/09/2019 at 23:38:24
I can't get to the game any more because of ill health so I listen on the radio. This is how it goes all the time for the 90 mins:

Ball crossed, cleared... on and on. Or corner, cleared... on and on. The only change is if Everton have the kick-off.

The good news I understand was the new manager was in the main stand looking at the crap on the field... I just hope the story is right.

Jack Convery
104 Posted 23/09/2019 at 02:49:37
If a caterpillar took as long in transition to becoming a butterfly a tit would have had it by now.

EFC Players I reckon Silva does not trust / wants to sell / does not rate however you want to cut it :
JJ Kenny - loaned out,
Mina - preferred Zouma, and may have preferred Marcos Rojo too.
Schneiderlin - wanted to sell him,
Davies - can't get in ahead of Schneids,
Bernard - tried to get Zaha and got Iwobi,
Tosun - wants to sell him,
Walcott - always a late sub never a starter,
Niasse - missing in action,
Bolasie - loaned out,
Pennington - loaned out,
Besic - loaned out,
Sidibe - or he'd be in the team given Colemans form,
Holgate - or he'd be in the team given how Keane and Mina have started.
Garbutt - loaned out.
Thats 14 players who are being paid wages by EFC in full or in part.
It must be a lot of money and stopping us from getting in other players as Brands needs to balance the books, or so it looks to me.

There are others of course who have been loaned out to gain experience and finally Lookman who he never trusted despite what he said last week.

So you can see Silva has big problems with his squad despite some of the deadwood being moved on in the summer.

We must buy a couple of players at least who are experienced for the Centre Forward and Centre Half positions come January and hope Gbamin gets fit and is as good as we hope he is. Buying potential cannot be the be the only tool in the box. A couple more of the ilk of Delph would be a start. Until then Silva has to make the best of it and so do we.

A very disheartened Blue.

Craig Walker
105 Posted 23/09/2019 at 10:30:11
I agree with Tony Marsh and said it when we got Silva. Benitez would do a good job at Everton. We need a manager who isn't the next big thing but has managed at the highest level and won things. I don't like the comments he made about us and they really hurt at the time but do we want to keep this small-club mentality or get in a proven manager? Rafa called us a small club back in the day and we are acting like one continually appointing managers who have proven nothing. He's won trophies. He even managed to keep Newcastle in the league for two seasons without any investment - let's see if Bruce can do the same. I think there are people in the Everton dressing room who can stop playing for a manager when they don't fancy it. Rafa would demand more respect than the likes of Silva, Koeman and Martinez.

I fell for all this nonsense that Silva has shown he can adapt to different playing styles and has succeeded in other leagues (What? Estoril?) Everton is a far different proposition than Estoril, Watford or Hull City. The fans want winning football and an entertaining playing style. They above all else want 100% effort from anyone lucky enough to get to wear the blue shirt. For too long now, we haven't seen any of the above. We want a manager who can think under pressure and react. Not someone who only has a plan A and reverts to the same tactics and substitutions.

Dyche, Howe etc are much of the same. Benitez is the only one I would consider.

Craig Walker
106 Posted 23/09/2019 at 10:37:39
Rob @96. My son is 8 years old and has all the same issues. We live in the West Midlands. I left the North West 22 years ago. He is the only Evertonian in his school. There are RS, Arsenal, Spurs, Chelsea, Man United fans everywhere. He said to me last year that he was getting picked on. Even the bloke who runs their after-school football scheme is a RS and mocks him. It be nice just for once if we could get a win against that lot and give him something to hold on to. Just one win. We haven't beaten them in his lifetime! How shocking is that? I do feel for today's supporters though. At least I remember the good times.
Iain Latchford
107 Posted 23/09/2019 at 11:12:13
I went on Saturday with my lad (11). He was in tears after the game (not for the first time). He knows what's coming at school.

What a mess. City will destroy us, and teams like Burnley and Brighton away are all wrong for us at the moment. I don't know where we go from here.

Utterly depressing.

Tony Everan
108 Posted 23/09/2019 at 11:50:57
Craig 105

There is no doubt about it Benitez is an excellent manager. Proven. He creates resilient and organised football teams. Even at Newcastle's lowest ebb he got some sort of a team response. I thought he worked miracles there considering the shite he had to put up with.

All the ex-Liverpool stuff would soon be forgotten if he turned us around and beat the RS at Goodison to boot.

Steve Pickering
109 Posted 23/09/2019 at 12:20:59
I think Silva is living on very much borrowed time - despite the previous RS associations I fancied both Brendan Rodgers and Benitez at Everton
Pat Kelly
110 Posted 23/09/2019 at 18:04:18
The scene for this season's early surrender was set with the so-called preseason. It was nothing short of a farce. Traipsing off to Africa for a non event with the mighty Kariobangi Sharks. Faffing about in the Swiss Alps with local pub teams. As soon as any organised opposition turned up we fell apart. Is it any wonder the team wasn't ready ? Silva presided over this and Brands can take equal blame. DOF ? Director of Farce.
Steve Solomon
111 Posted 24/09/2019 at 13:50:43
I have really struggled to watch the last 2 Everton games (on tv), to the point of switching to another game 10 minutes into the 2nd half both times.
I am no expert but it seems that benching the 2 guys that recently scored goals in a team that struggles to score goals is just plain stupid (DCL and Iwobi). How can they gain any confidence?
What is this obsession with a formation that clearly isn't working?
I would like to see 2 strikers up front, and play focused on somewhere other than wings (maybe up the middle at times? - I dunno).
Very frustrating.

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