Big Club Mentality

by   |   20/10/2020  20 Comments  [Jump to last]

We're a funny old club. Part of the Premier League for the duration of its history, yet very much marginalised. We've seen middling yo-yo clubs overtake us (Chelsea and Man City), whole dynasties built and rebuilt and decline (Man Utd and Arsenal), and the likes of Spurs (a similar sort of club) go up and down in fortunes.

Then you have flash-in-the-pan clubs like Blackburn, Leicester City and Liverpool picking up an isolated league win when circumstances fall in their favour. At the other end of the spectrum, Leeds Utd, Aston Villa, Newcastle Utd, Nottingham Forest and Sheffield Wednesday have all had their ups and downs. Some have never recovered.

Throughout the entire period, we have clung to top-flight status, then assumed the dreary title 'Best of the Rest', briefly flirted with greatness under Roberto Martinez, and then declined until we picked up Ancelotti. Carlo Ancelotti... a man who is a manager of big clubs. But have we yet realised that is what we are?

Seems to me like the mindset and expectations is very much 10 years out of date. We're too accepting of Best of the Rest status (which is really just another way of saying 'Second Best'). The awful lows before Moyes and then the realistically managed-down expectations under Moyes have really left their mark.

But we have a very highly decorated manager, some excellent players and (without wanting to tempt fate) a world-class stadium on the horizon. It is time, therefore, to raise the expectations. I do not want to see any Second Best mentality any more.

I want to see:

- Recruitment of excellent players only

- Our players refusing to accept poor or marginal decisions

- Our superb fan site not talking in terms of lucky escapes, VAR etc, but talking in terms of “Blues Stay Top After Fiery Derby”.

We are top! We are still top and unbeaten – yet all the focus is on the controversy. Forget the controversy, let's expect the rub of the green. Let's enjoy being top.

Liverpool were nowhere a few years ago. Rodgers made them play and feel like a big club before they settled for second best for too long under Roy Hodgson. It's not long ago that we were genuinely better than them (as we have been in patches through the Premier League era).

Stop the undue respect. Start raising the expectations. Start behaving like a big club.

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Reader Comments (20)

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Barry Rathbone
1 Posted 20/10/2020 at 21:03:37
Oh to experience the "nowhere" purgatory of the RS.

Lost count of the trophies they've won waiting for the title including perennial semi final and final appearances in the CL.

Our demise is of a monumental magnitude deserving every bit of indifference that comes our way. I laugh at fans bleating about unfair media when decades of nothing lies in our wake.

The solution is to win something or forever be Coventry of the 70s and 80s

Dennis Stevens
2 Posted 20/10/2020 at 23:36:55
Ah, I still remember Coventry City winning something - the bloody cheek of it!
Stan Schofield
3 Posted 20/10/2020 at 23:47:50
I don't think that a 'big club mentality' is relevant. All that matters is winning games consistently, preferably in an entertaining style. If we do that, all else will be taken care of automatically.
Nicholas Howard
4 Posted 21/10/2020 at 02:35:51
It is a pure (attention) diversion effort by RS.

They were hammered by Villa(oh! Small team that they think they would run over easily) This Reds team is not going to repeat last season feat Injuries further reduced their title hopes. The reality seeps in and everyone from coaches, pro-reds media/pundits, fans retaliate and show their frustration through some unfortunate injuries and strange unfavorable VAR decision...Well..the hack, Everton just happened to be recipient of favored VAR decision and fats that Everton is on the way of the league now further aggravate their new found inferior complex in RS fans. COYB

Derek Thomas
5 Posted 21/10/2020 at 03:20:07
rs; little big club.
Patrick McFarlane
6 Posted 21/10/2020 at 09:35:09
Compare and contrast the mindset of Carlo compared to previous recent Everton managers, he says there's always room for improvement by every player, including the more high-profile ones, that's what will transform the club in the future, the demand for excellence by all. It's a shame that just as we look as if we are building a team to be truly competitive, that the threat of a breakaway league could result in the glass ceiling being replaced by a permanent concrete one.
Robert Tressell
7 Posted 21/10/2020 at 11:53:38
Two things:

1. Moshiri, Brands and Ancelotti are building towards having the showpiece stadium in a 2 club town and a side to go with it. This is a genuinely terrifying prospect for the rs.

2. A breakaway Euro league is fine - if that's all you want. But if manure and rs want to play in the domestic league at the same time, they've got another think coming. I'd rather let them leave and replace them with the two Glasgow clubs

Jamie Crowley
8 Posted 21/10/2020 at 16:53:23
Robert -

I prefer things to stay just the way they are. But if those two clubs left, and were replaced with Celtic and Rangers, and the two FAs could figure out a way to include the lower division Scottish teams in Pro-Rel, I personally would love it.

Frightening thing would be Celtic and Rangers with real TV money. They both would become sensational with more funds at their disposal.

It’ll never happen, but that situation of adding Celtic and Rangers, viewing simply on the surface and ignoring all the logistics and pitfalls with execution, is mouth-watering in my opinion.

Robert Tressell
9 Posted 21/10/2020 at 19:49:03
Interesting point Jamie

On reflection, the gate receipts and TV deals just for letting the glasgow clubs in might exceed the benefit of a European league.

Only trouble is the chances of us (and other englush clubs) winning trophies would be vastly reduced!

Those two clubs could start to dominate with proper money behind them.

Jerome Shields
10 Posted 22/10/2020 at 01:44:28
I agree with your sediments, but now that Everton are back to there rightful status as a, Big Club, we find that the so called other Big Clubs have a sense of entitlement, exclusivity and a idea that rules should be changed to maintain this.

Things have changed a lot since we have been here before and it is good for football Everton are back, based on endeavour rather than trying to fix our position.

Just in the Nick of time the right voice of Everton will be heard in the Premiership.

Jerome Shields
11 Posted 22/10/2020 at 08:58:55

Glasgow Celtic have approx 60, 000 season title holders and though I have no figures I would say that Glasgow Rangers are similar. Both have massive worldwide support. Most Clubs would be dead and gone after Rangers recent history. The other thing is they would quickly establishment themselves with the benefit of competition at the status of the enduring Top European Clubs. Therefore adding impetus to a European Super League. They also would want the exclusivity they already have. Be careful for what you wish for unleashing these too Gaints.

Alan McGuffog
12 Posted 22/10/2020 at 09:39:50
Thats something to relish when we move to BM. West of Scotland neanderthals descending to amuse and entertain us with their ditties about
" wading in Fenian blood" or " up the 'RA" or whatever.
No ta.
Barry Rathbone
13 Posted 22/10/2020 at 13:32:39
Mansoor and Abramovich could be in charge of the Glasgow clubs and it wouldn't make any difference top players won't go north in the numbers required just ask Newcastle. Or more pertinently the russians.

It would create interest and excitement to balance the outgoing of Utd and the RS but the idea of Rangers and Celtic carving up the English league is fantasy and I might add unappealing given bigotry lies at the root of their fan base

Jerome Shields
14 Posted 22/10/2020 at 15:00:57
Your Northern Concept is interesting coming from South Australia.
Jerome Shields
15 Posted 22/10/2020 at 15:14:25
Sorry may be the wrong Barry, but my scepticism does come across accurately.
Kieran Kinsella
16 Posted 22/10/2020 at 15:17:19

That's not true. When Rangers had money they lured the likes of Gazza, Brian Laudrup, Basile Boli, Mikhailichenko, from Italy and France. They also seduced a couple of our championship winning team from 87.

That being said, it would be hypocritical if we responded to a couple of our teams skulking off and leaving the domestic league by enticing a couple of teams from a foreign league to replace them.

Mike Allison
17 Posted 24/10/2020 at 08:24:19
Do you mean: “be entitled, one-eyed arrogant twats”?

Because not being “big-club” type fans is what sets Evertonians apart from those other showers.

No thanks. I’d rather try to be honest, humble and respectful whilst winning things.

Steve Shave
18 Posted 24/10/2020 at 08:55:42
Hey Rob, thanks for posting, I always enjoy reading your views and often find them much aligned with my own. I agree with the sentiment of the piece, I believe Carlo has radically improved the attitude of the players in terms of self-belief and mentality (weirdly though somehow only this season, before the close of play last season we still seemed like the same old same old Everton who flattered to deceive).

Something feels different this season, almost like last season was the experiment, this is when his grand plan fell together. Why shouldn't we approach each game with a big club mentality and self belief? We are currently as good as anyone in the league if not better! (Gosh it feels good to say that).

I have prattled on before on here about my views on our past being a weight around our modern day neck in many ways, the success, the expectation, Nil Satis Nisi Optimum etc etc. Our unrelenting standards have in my view contributed to our despair in the terraces at the underachieving, small club mentality of the players, lacklustre shite we have been served for too many years. This despair has (often deservedly) been projected from fans to players and the players more often than not shat themselves on the big stage, year after year we choked. I cannot help but feel COVID has done us a very un-Everton like favour (my word we have been due some luck) with the absence of the crowd have the players been able to re-align themselves with what we once were? A big fish in a big pond? There are certainly playing like it and long may it continue. COYB!

Eddie Dunn
19 Posted 24/10/2020 at 19:03:47
Jamie, the inclusion of the big Glasgow sides would bring a whole new aspect to our domestic scene. However, I would not wish to destroy Scottish football in the process. Perhaps, if the European dream comes to fruition, (presuming the auld firm are not included) then maybe the English PL and FA could combine with the Scottish and Welsh(and NI) to form a British League. The Islands are not so big to make this too arduous and it would provide a decent foil to the greedy Euro whores. Worth thinking about at least!
Derek Thomas
20 Posted 25/10/2020 at 01:47:53
Given yesterday's results and our game today, it will be a case of: 'Big Club is as Big Club does'.

Nobody this season is going to put up 100 or 99 pts and run away with it by 15 or 20 points. Something in the points range that starts with an 8 will win it and at the moment, we are early leaders.

That's all we are – early leaders, everybody is going to lose games, drop points. If we are still in the mix at Christmas, all we'll be is contenders.

If we're there then, the media will start trying to manage our agenda for us... when you see or hear the term 'The New Leicester', that's when you'll know.

But don't worry about that, wait until it happens, just focus on today's game, on how we play, on how we shape with a couple of missing players, focus on how the remaining players and the replacements' shape. Don't even worry if we lose, because – trite but true – it's a Marathon, not a sprint.

One Game At A Time.

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