The Deepening Gloom

Lyndon Lloyd 01/12/2021 184comments  |  Jump to last
Everton 1 - 4 Liverpool

When Rafael Benitez was appointed, this was the nightmare scenario; Liverpool victorious at Goodison Park, their fans boisterously goading the home fans by chanting the name of their former manager from the away section in the Lower Bullens. Just like the distasteful Sam Allardyce interlude, it was wholly avoidable, one more ignominy that Evertonians have had to bear as Farhad Moshiri flounders in his attempts to find the formula to unpick this Gordian Knot of a football club.

Few Blues fans might have imagined things would be quite as bad as this, though, and the heavily lopsided scoreline was only part of it. This was Everton’s eighth match without a win and a club that was in the top four in mid-September has slumped to 14th on the back of its worst run of results for 22 years and sits just five points above a relegation zone that feels almost magnetic at this point.

No one who witnessed the performance at Brentford on Sunday and familiar with Liverpool’s form was giving Everton much of a chance in this first derby of the season and so it proved as Jürgen Klopp’s men ruthlessly underscored the massive gulf in class between these two teams. The two clubs exist on different planes now and by the final whistle, that had been glaringly illustrated.

And yet, despite Benitez’s suicidal strategy in trying to counter one of the best midfield trios and “false nines” in the world with a two-man midfield of his own and the fact that the team had been routinely carved open on the way to a 2-0 deficit, Everton were actually in with a shout of perhaps grabbing a point from this derby before Seamus Coleman’s horrendous error put the contest beyond reach with 25 minutes to go. You sense, though, that even had the Toffees’ spell of pressure during the middle of the second half yielded an equaliser, Liverpool would still have produced an answer without the need for the home captain to gift them a gilt-edged chance on goal. As “expected losses” go, this one probably takes the cake.

Farhad Moshiri, he who reputedly made that controversial remark a couple of seasons ago, was absent from this evening’s debacle while Bill Kenwright, Denise Barrett-Baxendale and Marcel Brands looked on glumly from the Directors Box and then, at the final whistle, faced the ire of many of those fans who had stayed to the bitter end rather than join the ranks of those who had long since seen enough — some of them as early as the 20th minute.

Chants of “sack the board” might have felt a world away when Moshiri and his billions took control of Everton almost six years promising the world but those words rang out from the stands tonight indicating the fact that a tired and frustrated set of supporters has run out of patience with the dysfunction, lack of progress, the insult that Benitez’s hiring added to ongoing injury and genuine fear of what comes next.

The team news an hour before kick-off was greeted by familiar groans as the Spaniard persisted with Salomon Rondon up front and left Fabian Delph on the bench in favour of a 4–4-2 formation with the returning Richarlison playing off the Venezuelan striker and Demarai Gray deployed on the other flank to Andros Townsend.

To his credit, while the ball continues to evade him in the penalty area, Rondon put in a committed display as did, in truth, the rest of the Everton team. They just couldn’t live with Klopp’s side lined up in Benitez’s chosen formation and had they been four or five goals down by the half-hour mark, it wouldn’t have been a surprise.

Joel Matip missed the target with a completely free header off Liverpool's first corner of the game in the second minute and Mohamed Salah volleyed over after Townsend had gifted the ball to Diogo Jota in the third, while Jordan Pickford had to make an impressive save in the eighth minute to deny the Egyptian after Sadio Mané had picked him out with a low cross from the left.

Everton were being sliced open by Liverpool's passing and incisive running and when Klopp's men attacked again down the left through Andrew Robertson, the Scot cut the ball back to the top of the penalty area where Jordan Henderson arrived untracked to bend a left-footed effort around the goalkeeper.

The home side had a couple of flurries that saw dangerous balls flash across the box, one of them cleared behind by Matip before Gray could pounce while at the other end Trent Alexander-Arnold tested Pickford with an accurate drive that the England international palmed away to safety.

Pickford was left stranded a minute later, though, when Liverpool cleared a corner from their own box and counter-attacked quickly, with Henderson sending Salah away into space where he proved to be as deadly as always with an unerring finish inside the far post.

2-0 almost became a humiliating 3-0 when another corner from the Liverpool right bounced off the unwitting Michael Keane and bounced a foot wide and Pickford had to be alert once more to beat away an effort from Mané as the Toffees continued to be overrun.

A lifeline arrived, however, through Gray. Richarlison collected a pass and turned smartly to release the winger who had taken up an excellent position between the last two defenders and, taking a perfectly-weighted through-ball in stride, he tucked it under the advancing Alisson Becker to halve Everton's deficit.

Abdoulaye Doucouré had a chance to level things right on the stroke of half-time when Lucas Digne got to the byline and crossed but the midfielder's shot from the angle was blocked near the goal line.

Doucouré would have Everton's first chance of the second half but couldn't get enough power on his header to trouble Alisson while Ben Godfrey had to make an excellent last-ditch tackle to deny Mané as the Blues were easily carved open once more.

Despite the obvious disparity in quality, Everton were still very much in the game at 2-1 and were doing their best to force Liverpool back when Rondon had to come off with a hamstring injury.

He was replaced by Anthony Gordon who wasted no time getting stuck in and adding his own tenacity to the mix but after Townsend had seen a direct free-kick deflect off the defensive wall and the resulting corner fell short and was cleared, Coleman's blunder under pressure from Salah handed Liverpool a killer third goal. The Irishman failed to control a bouncing pass from Gray and was robbed, with Salah racing away before slipping the ball past Pickford and just inside the post.

That knocked the remaining fight out of Everton and though Delph was somewhat curiously introduced with 17 minutes left and Cenk Tosun was thrown on later for a rare run-out, there was time in between for the visitors to score a painful fourth. Jota eased his way past the flat-footed Allan and drilled a shot into the roof of Pickford's net to round things off another miserable derby defeat for Everton.

The aftermath has been characterised by an outpouring of frustration from a fanbase becoming increasingly fearful of how bad this season could get for a club with a worryingly thin squad overseen by a manager that doesn’t seem able to get the best out of the players at his disposal even as, one by one, they return from injury.

In addition to wanting accountability and communication from the top, there are calls now for Benitez to be sacked with Everton sinking down the table with a return of just two points from the last 24 on offer. Given the paucity of options available over the summer when Moshiri scrambled to replace Carlo Ancelotti, you would imagine the Board will try and stave that decision off for as long as possible but the longer the losses pile up and the greater the threat of relegation becomes, the more you have to believe Benitez’s position must become untenable.

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Reader Comments (184)

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Mick O'Malley
1 Posted 02/12/2021 at 05:15:38
Benitez was hired cos it was said he makes players better. "He will make us hard to beat" we were told. Fuck me, Silva was replaced for a run that was nowhere near as bad as this, after having his best players sold on him.

How anyone can still support this appointment… well, it's beyond me. Every single player has regressed. Please sack this Kopite cos he is toxic, he is sending us one way.

Benitez Out!!

Laurie Hartley
2 Posted 02/12/2021 at 05:55:09
I would sack the lot of them, Lyndon, and if I was Moshiri, I would do myself another favour and sack myself. We need some football men running this club.
John Maxwell
3 Posted 02/12/2021 at 06:01:41
I just don't agree with the "Benitez Out" brigade.

His hands have been tied by FFP, none of this has been his fault... Failures from the Walsh era still haunt us to this day. He has had next to no money to buy new players, two of which have been our best two for most of the season.

Rondon was only supposed to be an impact sub / squad player but, with Calvert-Lewin being out injured since August, he has had to play him.

Was anyone expecting any other result from last night's game? I wasn't.

Remember, we were playing some good football until the injuries this season and I admit the fact that the manager has to take some blame for the current situation.

But sacking him now cannot be a good idea... exactly who could turn the shower of shite team into anything else?

Chris Leyland
4 Posted 02/12/2021 at 06:24:25
I have lain awake unable to sleep since getting back from Goodison and witnessing the heaviest home defeat to the shite in 39 years.

Is everything down to Benitez? No, the inept, passive and clueless Board of Directors have to shoulder a lot of the blame for the criminal mismanagement of the club – along with the passionless millionaires masquerading as professional footballers out on the pitch each week.

But….

Has Benitez made us better than when Ancelotti was here? – No, he has made us worse as the last 8 games have shown.

Is he tactically flexible? – No, his rigid 4-4-2 and lack of ability to influence games with positive changes demonstrate this.

Is he a positive influence and a ray of hope that fans can rally round? – No, he is a stubborn, largely charmless individual and his past history is a negative that makes it very difficult for fans to unite behind and support to try to drag these heartless players over the line.

I am therefore now of the view that he has to go and we have to try to get someone in who can bring better organisation and motivation to the group of limited players at the club – someone who fans can get behind.

That doesn't absolve the board of blame as Kenwright, Barrett-Baxendale and Brands should also be shown the door. Moshiri needs to get a grip of things and protect his investment by protecting our top-flight status because, make no mistake, it is perilous at present unless something radical changes and changes soon.

Ernie Baywood
5 Posted 02/12/2021 at 06:45:11
John #3.

Was he a good appointment? And what's your plan?

I would say he was a dreadful, tone-deaf appointment that shows a complete misunderstanding of our club by whoever made it happen.

And we're genuinely in a dogfight now. We need a change. The worst thing we could do right now is have that guy at the helm when we need everyone pulling in the same direction.

Eddie Dunn
6 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:10:13
The result was predictable although, once again, basic errors from second-class players exposed the gulf in teams.

Benitez has to shoulder the blame. The so-called master tactician played a two-man midfield against the three of our neighbours. Many hoped he would employ Delph in that midddle ground to prevent exactly what occurred when Henderson potted his shot.

Rafa has got selections wrong and formations. He has persisted with Rondon who had a decent game but, once the lad hobbled off, he could have gone like for like and put on a striker. What was the point of putting Delph on so late?

Townsend has started making lots of little errors, gifting possession away in his own half and his cut inside onto his left foot is the most predictable move in the league.

The team showed plenty of fight and we won't play teams as good as them every week but the manager is running out of excuses. How we miss the quality of passing from James and Sigurdsson. Even Gomes can play a pass but now we are utterly predictable. Dangerous on the break but clueless in possession.

Digne has regressed alarmingly. No pressure on his place, he once had lots of assists but now is average in attack and out of position, caught upfield regularly and seems to lack his old pace.

So many problems to solve and Calvert-Lewin is not going to change things alone. We need to scrap for our lives until he is back. And even then, we will need to recruit one or two decent grafters in January.

As for Benitez, as others have said, he doesn't seem to have organised us as well as Ancelotti… and as for tactics – he seems clueless.
He appears to think he won't be sacked because of the injuries but now he is only missing Dominic out of his best eleven.

We lurch from crisis to crisis... but this is the side that that played so well at Old Trafford without Calvert-Lewin. Only Mina is absent from that team. We have the ability but the confidence has drained away.

The question is: Is Rafa the man to inspire this group to go again, and climb out of this mess? I think Arsenal is his last chance.

Jack Convery
7 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:10:35
In the cold darkness of an early Thursday morning, I find myself reflecting on my / our football club and what is happening to it – happenings that have been going on now for some time totally unchecked, without any solutions on any horizon now or in the future – near or far.

We are a total shambles. Not just because of last night but because of things that have been happening over the 6 years of Moshiri's tenure and the Moyes era of plucky little Everton.

The Moyes era taught us to accept that the odds were stacked against us and we should be grateful David kept us almost relevant in the gold standard Premier League.

The odd Cup run, even a final and European qualification now and again was a good season's work. European campaigns were mediocre, though we were done over by the RS and UEFA when we did finish 4th. Getting Villarreal, Collina and a "though shalt not pass" into the group stage of the Champions League.

The fact that we became used to getting beat-up season after season by Arsenal, Chelsea, the RS etc and accepting it, as they had more money than us, has contributed to where we now find ourselves. We accepted second-best and by 'we', I mean the club, its players, the manager, the board and the chairman.

When David screwed us over, we went for Martinez. A Cup winner and a relegation manager. The first season went very well until we decided in the Everton fashion to cock-up and finish 5th. The defenders aged, Martinez apparently refused to practice corners and free-kicks as they weren't proper goals if scored from!! The players lost faith and we lost touch with the top six.

Enter Moshiri – "Everton will not become a museum!" Martinez out. Remember the Mordor derby when Stones took ill? We got stuffed – again. Even the RS felt sorry for us that night!

Enter Koeman / Walsh. A ridiculous transfer strategy was entered into. We had money to burn. Koeman wanted Klaassen, Walsh wanted Sigurdsson, and Kenwright wanted the prodigal son back – Rooney. Three No 10s… Wow! Lukaku not replaced but, hey-ho, we have 3 No 10s.

Koeman improves his golf swing. Buys a red Xmas tree. Rooney cops off with a boob job wannabe and is all over the papers within weeks of arriving. EFC eventually go on a bad run and Koeman is out. Loads a dosh spent for no progress – just a muddle of a squad and wages out of control. Walsh out.

Moshiri brings in Fat Sam to keep us up and he spends more dosh – nearly £50M on Walcott – yet another Arsenal cast-off – and Tosun. Fat Sam tells us Tosun doesn't like the cold. We are mindboggling boring and stay up. Fat Sam is out (plus the compensation).

Enter Silva. He wants Richarlison he gets Richarlison. Richarlison is value for money. We get Zouma on loan – he's good. We want to keep Zouma. Lampard and Chelsea lead us a merry dance. We don't get Zouma. Brand rushed to Man Utd to get a loanee centre-back but it doesn't happen. We are weak at the back. We go on a bad run. Surprise surprise. Silva out (immediately after yet another mauling at Mordor).

Enter Don Carlo – a proper manager with a CV to die for. We get Allan. We get James. Calvert-Lewin looks a player at last. The Spirit of the Blues is back in the charts. We lose to the RS kids on national TV – this in my opinion is our worst ever result. A gutless, lethargic performance from the team. Not a one-off mind you! Far too many to mention. Carlo agrees to go to Real Madrid after we go on yet another bad run – repetitive isn't it. Very depressing indeed.

Rafa Benitez arrives. We go on a bad run.

£600M spent. The End.

Brian Murray
8 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:40:35
I hope curly Larry and Mo were squirming in their cushioned Main Stand seats after the "Sack the Board" calls. We need to keep this momentum on them going because, as Man Utd fans know, it's easy to sweep under the carpet if we have any upturn in results (I know).

As for the manager, put the Kopite issue to one side for a minute – I'm shocked that his distrust of youth has backed him even more into a corner and his total lack of vision or bravery to even find out how good Dobbin, Simms and Onyango are. I know they have had injury issues but come on. They could easily save him so much grief and his job.

Regardless, this FFP that pro Rafa likes to hide behind… Can we get buyers for Sigurdsson, Davies, Tosun, Gomes? If so, will that free us up a bit to start taking on the world, finally?

Bobby Mallon
9 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:41:07
Jack Convery your last sentence should have read, to be continued
Bobby Mallon
10 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:45:00
Brian Murray. The only saleable players we have are Pickford, Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison and they are now worth pennies.

I think Calvert-Lewin may be out for the season – his injury is similar to Gbamin's.

Rafa can stop hiding behind FFP. If it's that bad, then the youngsters have to be the answer.

Brian Murray
11 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:48:04
Bobby. I'm not even getting onto the sellable asset ones. If sold with no or a tiny fee for these losers, it surely frees up the FFP limits for us. That's called foresight and vision… which might as well be in Chinese to the panto pisstaker, his Li'l Ms Semtex, and clog feet.
Dale Rose
12 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:53:03
I can't disagree with what you say, Jack. We were totally out-played by a better team last night. There seem to be so many better teams than us these days.

I don't see how we can sack Rafa, we will look bigger fools than we already do. It was a grim night last night; how we can get out of it, I just don't know.

The team last night was just not up to the job. Delph would have stabilised the midfield. Gordon should have been brought on earlier.

One thing the Red Shite do well is passing and controlling the ball well. We don't seem to have the basics right.

Danny Baily
13 Posted 02/12/2021 at 07:56:44
There's no solution. We just have to hope we can stop the rot and get another 20 points on the board, somehow. We've been here before, as recently as 2015 and 2018, and come out the other side. This feels more like the late '90s though.
Pete Clarke
14 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:01:07
I did foresee that happening last night. I saw it in my mind as soon as his name came up for the Everton job.

My second thoughts were that we could not possibly be that stupid to split an already irate fan base and give our horrible neighbours the chance to rub more shit all over us.

I have since realized that Moshiri is so stupid that we do not even come into his thoughts. He lives in another world to us Blues. (He's so thick that he would appoint Gerrard to replace Benitez.)

What I don't want and will not tolerate is that Benitez, who won major trophies with those horrible neighbours of ours, will be given the chance to take us down into the championship.

I am done if he's not sacked along with Kenwright, Brands and all the coaching staff. Let some other manager take us down.

Bobby Mallon
15 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:06:12
I have watched the game again (I know – I'm mental) and, for the first 25 minutes, we never won one second ball. We then steadily got back in the game by doing just that.

Half-time came and I thought Delph should have been brought on for Townsend to shore up midfield. Then Gordon for Rondon was a natural change anyway. It was all too late in the day. Rondon did play better but he really is not the answer.

Robert Tressell
17 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:24:03
Danny @ 13. It does feel like a return to the 90s and certainly a return to the end of Martinez and the end of Silva.

If this was Benitez's 2nd season after a decent spending spree, then he'd be sacked. Simple as that.

Sacking him now would leave us with Ferguson taking charge indefinitely because, without a transfer budget, no-one worth their salt would take us on. Possibly not even Allardyce. That would be a massive risk.

The solution is probably as simple as patience. Wait for the January window, pick up a few seasoned pros with the right attitude and physicality – and return to the awkward relentless style that did a good job earlier in the season.

Hopefully use a midfield 3 and ditch zonal marking too.

Alexander Murphy
18 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:37:55
Kenwright
Brands
Barrett-Baxendale
Moshiri

Those ingredients are the perfect recipe for disaster.

Rory Grant
19 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:40:04
Match by match, I am more convinced that we are a dead man standing. We are simply bankrupt.

FFP has been ignored by other clubs when necessary, January calls for desperate reinforcements and it is already evident that they will not come.

Whatever purpose Moshiri's takeover was meant to serve is now done. Potential success would have been a bonus but, as it didn't materialise, it is time to go. Only the useful idiots will be left behind. Us fans included.

Rafa is neither the reason nor the solution to the looming relegation. Mentally weak and disjointed squad was handed to him, probably with false promises. 25 points is a huge challenge as Rafa has not been able to instill any kind of identity or form into our game.

Even if we survived this season, relegation will remain a real possibility for years to come. New era has dawned indeed.

Jacques Sandtonian
20 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:47:40
I get the criticism of 4-4-2 but, at the same time, he's damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. Starting three players in midfield, especially if those three are Delph, Doucouré and Allan, guarantees isolation for Rondon up front (or Richarlison) and eliminates any chance of us creating chances. Then Rafa gets attacked for being too negative.

I have (waning) sympathy for Benitez. It's impossible to select a balanced team with any quality on the ball. I do think our central defensive pairing has looked better in recent games, as Godfrey starts finding his feet again. Our full-backs, however, look laboured, especially Coleman, but the midfield is just a wasteland.

Rafa is leaning more and more heavily on his “Let's get our players back and we'll be good again” line. I think we can all agree that Calvert-Lewin might have made a difference against Brentford but the Holy Trinity itself would've struggled against this Liverpool team.

I do think Moshiri needs to purge at board level. Barrett-Baxendale, I don't care. She's on the commercial side. Brands I still believe to be operating with one hand tied behind his back; I think he needs more time and more autonomy. But we need a chairman now who is ruthless. Someone who consistently calls out anything that doesn't meet NSNO and sacks people when they're not performing. In time, that may include Brands himself.

Barry Rathbone
21 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:51:43
Look on the bright side: it wasn't 6 or 7, which was a distinct possibility. Still reckon we have just enough to avoid the Bottom 3 but paddling around mid-table for decades will inevitably catch us out.

Almost certainly when seats are being installed in the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock – we should never have tempted the gods with the new stadium curse.

Brian Ronson
22 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:53:20
The first thing they need to do is get their heads out their arses and recognise the obvious: we are in a relegation fight (possible Bottom 3 by Xmas). The consequence is the manager has to start picking teams that are hard to beat. We are playing teams that are better than us and the only way to survive is to defend properly.

Though the manager is not blameless, it would be ridiculous to sack him. (What do we do? Call for big Sam!) In my view, Brands is the one that needs to go. If he's been responsible for transfers, then that's a reason to sack him. If he isn't, what the hell is he for?

With Brands out of the way, you then need to bring in a person with football business acumen who can broker the deals that the manager wants, ie, the manager makes football decisions about recruitment.

If Moshri can't see that, he has to act to create a better structure with clear roles, responsibility with accountability then he is an idiot. Kenwright should see he is part of the problem, not the solution. I have never heard him say once he has made errors of judgement. Arrogance beyond belief!

Barry Hesketh
23 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:57:16
In the past, we have bemoaned the lack of quality and heart within the team that prevented the club from progressing in the cups or qualifying for European football; now, we are faced with the prospect of a team lacking the quality and heart to keep its place in the top division.

We've spent oodles of cash, and seen players such as Stones, Lukaku et al leave the club, we've kept other players such as Coleman at the club, who should have been replaced 3 years ago. We're relying on a forward who is hardly prolific to return to the team and boost our chances of winning the odd game in three.

Twenty-four games remaining and we need to win at least eight of them to stand a chance of staying up, but the issues with the team suggest even with a decent transfer window, that this squad will continue to struggle to put points on the board.

Must-win games will come thick and fast in the next few weeks and months but the most important game will be the next fixture that we manage to take 3 points from. The sooner that day arrives, the better because if it doesn't arrive soon, the chances of Everton going down dramatically increase.

If the board believe that it's worth the risk, either to keep the manager in place or to replace him, they'd better have a contingency plan to ensure they support whichever decision they arrive at because playing with Premier League survival is not an option and, if the worst does happen, it will be a blow that Everton FC may never recover from.

Think of how long the likes of Leeds and others spent in the wilderness of the lower league. Relegation may too prevent the long-dreamed-of-new stadium and we'll be stuck at Goodison Park forever.

The big-wigs have some serious decisions to make in the coming days and weeks; if they get things wrong, it will be the most catastrophic error in the long history of the club. They have already made many many errors in the recent past; can they be trusted to make the right calls to help the team, or will they continue to muddle along hoping for the best?

The top brass is charged with steering the club in the right direction – it's now time for them to take charge and choose the direction.

Frank Sheppard
24 Posted 02/12/2021 at 08:59:10
1-4 was not as bad as I predicted. Although the total goals scored was accurate.

I see no point in sacking the manager that inherited a lopsided, weak squad, and was only able to spend £1.7 mill, and is now experiencing a very bad run.

Admittedly, I listened to most of his after-match waffles, and think we watched a different game, but sacking the manager would not change anything, or create a bounce. Need to tough it out, and get out of the Bottom 3 or 4 in January.

That's the reality, must get used to it, swallow our pride and sort it out.

John Keating
25 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:08:05
I really hoped that we would read this morning that Brands and Kenwright had done the right and honourable thing and resigned. I also hoped Barrett-Baxendale had gone back to EitC and only EitC. Unfortunately none of them are honourable.

Moshiri is supposed to be coming to the Arsenal game. I suspect if the game goes to form and we lose again, changes will be announced immediately after the final whistle.

In any other business, the incompetence of Kenwright would have resulted in dismissal years ago. This Brands type role has been a complete disaster at the Club. Who knows what Barrett-Baxendale does or brings to the football side?

Regarding Benitez, God only knows. Like many, who wanted him here? Thing is, who'll replace him now Hibbo has signed for that French outfit? We certainly can't bring in the pie eater or D and D.

Mina and Calvert-Lewin have been out a while and apparently players who have been out injured need 3-4 years to get back up to speed... according to some.

Priority for the rest of the season has to be boring defensive football and play for draws to get out the shit. Anyone who thinks we can "go for it" and attack ourselves out of trouble is deluded with this shower, and can expect more results like last night.

I wonder how many supporters of Kenwright during the Kirkby fiasco are still backing him today?

Brian Murray
26 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:11:58
I felt so alone pacing up and down Goodison Road with 20 odd minutes to go in the 1994 and 1997 relegation battles. I never want that feeling again. Fuckin do something different, portly Kopite idiot, and try the youth at least.
Christine Foster
27 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:18:32
Savage depression. Cuts pretty deep but sits along the all too many other scars inflicted over the years.

Sometimes people have to go for no other reason than change, and change is sorely needed. A fall guy such as Brands, Benitez will not be enough now; after 20 years or so, the still current chairman has to step aside.

Although the manager picks the team, they are not his team. Today's defeat was sown over the last 5 years, the haste of cutting a squad, bereft of depth and quality, was always a gamble, so this was always going to happen.

Benitez may lose his job, for no other reason than appearance, but who, realistically could do better with what we have?

It's the Everton Way that has to change, the culture and leadership. To be frank, losing as badly as this might be the best thing for the club if change at the top is a result. If not, it's another slip into the relegation mire.

Mark Ryan
28 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:21:21
Good piece by Phil McNulty in the Sky press following that shit show. The good thing is that it says what most of us have been discussing for years.

It lays the blame with Moshiri, Kenwright's man. It lays the blame with the club and not individuals.

Silva was a gamble and we all knew that. Koeman was a gamble, we all knew that. Allardyce was a joke. Ancellotti was a last throw of the dice and we went backwards.

Benitez is now hamstrung with a paper-thin squad. He was not the people's choice but sack him now and we're down.

Brands needs to be fired. He has overseen the players coming in and they have been the wrong choices. My Nan could have played better than Seamus last night and she's been dead these past 10 years.

It is the fault of Brands that we have never replaced the right-back first team position. We have poor central defenders. We gambled with James Rodriguez and that was a typical Moshiri / Brands gamble. Sack Brands and give Benitez a new right-back in January. We cannot shift the deadwood but we can start to build.

We don't need an idiot at the club buying the likes of Delph, Iwobi, Schneiderlin, Gomes, Sigurdsson and his classic signing Moise Kean. Moise Kean sums Brands up. Wrong choice. He gets things wrong consistently. We had 5 No 10s at one point and now we have none!!

Brands Out!!! Today preferably.

Anthony Flack
29 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:22:34
I was sat in my usual place in the Upper Bullens, but brought my 18-year-old daughter to her first derby.

I am tired of slagging off Coleman, but she made me laugh when she asked:

"Do you think Coleman has got Salah as triple captain in his fantasy team?"

Jonathan Tasker
30 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:28:23
Two points.

1) Kenwright won't leave until he leaves this mortal coil. He has cursed the club.

2) I have consistently said that the new ground won't be built. And I stand by that.

A lot of fans seem to be prepared to forgive the owners for the current malaise on the basis that at least there's the new ground to look forward to. I'm anticipating relegation and no new ground.

But don't worry – we will still have Kenwright. The man who wanted to bail out Bury with his own money.

Jon Wit
31 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:35:12
Respect to the fans that went to the game, I couldn't even be bothered to check the score – 1-4 is better than I expected.

I can't really be bothered to defend Benitez – but I'm glad the fans focused their ire elsewhere. The decision-making of the last 6 years has been appalling.

Glad Gray and Doucouré are back; let's face it, we are in a relegation fight now.

If we do get rid of another manager, can we let Ferguson go too please?

Kim Vivian
32 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:40:36
Moshiri is properly damned by his own hand whatever he does. He has appointed Brands and Benitez (I'm not including Barrett-Baxendale because I think she has little or nothing to do with what we as fans are watching on the pitch), and he has allegedly agreed to leave Kenwright in place for life.

If he was to sack Benitez and/or Brands and/or somehow get rid of Bill, what is he left with? – Basically the square root of fuck-all.

I don't believe he has sufficient football knowledge or contacts of his own to bring in or maybe promote replacements, so he is kind of stuck with what he's got. I may be wrong about that but that is certainly the impression he gives.

If he bins any or all the above-named, who does he then turn to? Despite their perceived ineptitude, he relies on these individuals given the relative paucity of his own football knowledge. There is not a whole queue of high achievers waiting to jump aboard this wounded ship and replacing key men is going to need time.

Stepping back, the appointment of Walsh was simply trying to bring Leicester's brief success to Goodison. He was "over promoted" and was probably a good scout in the old fashioned sense.

Brands's appointment seemed at the time to most people to have been astute given what he is known to have achieved in the Netherlands. I think most of us believed this to be good business – I do not recall many, if any, shouts to the contrary back then.

He is now faced with a seething mob armed with the proverbial torches and pitchforks demanding change. If it's true that Kenwright is running the rule over major footballing decisions, to the detriment of Brands and Benitez (or whoever is the manager at the time), he needs to be excised humanely from the script. Brands and Benitez may or may not be at loggerheads over recruitment but it is Moshiri's job to get them to sort it out.

The easy route is simply for Moshiri to fuck Rafa off as many are demanding, largely because of his "agent Rafa" / "RS gobshite" profile in their eyes, but would Brendan Rogers be getting the same level of vitriol if he was here?

Sacking Benitez, in my opinion, is not going to achieve anything in the short term. In fact, of the three named, I think he is probably the most important to retain. He could manage his recruitment strategy and, if he could somehow be provided with the resources to improve his threadbare squad, he can probably keep us top half of the Premier League.

Not what we all aspire to but the prospect of relegation battles is mortifying. This club simply cannot be allowed to sink like the Titanic — and Benitez is not the iceberg.

So, the non-footballing businessman we have at the helm is properly stuck between a rock and a hard place. This is all without touching on the calls for clear-outs at Finch Farm, the touchline, treatment room and anywhere else one would care to mention. What the solution is can only be supposition for us on the terraces but he has to now look damn hard and make some meaningful decisions.

It seems that compassionate removal of Kenwright might be a good start, would send a loud and clear message, and bank on Benitez and Brands to work proactively together to right the ship.

If indeed, Brands is the problem at board level, perhaps we are being harsh on Kenwright… but to let all three go in one cull would be suicidal.

Ed Fitzgerald
33 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:45:52
Wasn't Brands brought into the club based upon his previous successful record of buying and developing young players with a remit of playing attacking football?

The reality is that successive so-called ‘big' name managerial appointments by Moshiri have stymied his ability to pursue this philosophy. At least Brands was opposed to the appointment of Benitez – a move which was always going to end in tears given Benitez's predilection for negative tactics, reliance on older players, and his ties with the RS.

Yes, had we appointed Graham Potter (or Ferguson, Howe, Gaultier etc etc) we still might have been murdered last night… but I guess our fan base might have been more united and we would have been spared our RS neighbours singing our manager's name to add to the humiliation.

The goal now is simple avoid relegation at all costs as we are incredibly poor in all departments and it's a becoming a distinct possibility.

Sam Hoare
34 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:46:25
Jack @7,

I find it fascinating that you (and others) lay the roots of this malaise in the Moyes era. Why then and not before?

You say we accepted medicority under Moyes but, for the 6 years prior to Moyes, we didn't finish higher than 13th? And you have to go back all the way to 86-87 till you find a season where we finished higher than the 4th Moyes achieved.

Everton have been mediocre for over 30 years, with only one (slight fortuitous) cup win since the mid-80s. The most consistent we have been was under Moyes's tenure and, though not stellar, I think a fair few of us would be happy currently for a few seasons of finishing 4th, 5th, 6th or 7th.

Yes, things went stale at the end of Moyes's time; and yes, he said and did some stupid things when leaving… but, for me, this current malaise started after he left and perhaps more specifically when Moshiri arrived and we went from a club that mostly spent middling amount of money quite well to a club that spent large amounts of money, very badly.

Moshiri and his advisors favoured spending large amounts on supposedly Premier League proven players like Bolasie, Sigurdsson, Schneiderlin and we were soon lumbered with a bloated squad of mercenaries on inflated wages which made them impossible to shift.

Since Moshiri arrived, recruitment has been almost relentlessly awful and we have lacked any type of consistent style or identity. Until we address those things, I'm not sure much will improve.

Andrew Flanagan
35 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:47:52
The club needs a massive reset. Move on people like Barrett-Baxendale, Kenwright and other deadwood – never going to move our club forward with these characters.

I think they all seem to have deniability because no-one knows who is actually calling the shots. That lets them all off the hook. Brands has been a disaster but how much have his hands been tied? We just don't know.

Hate to say it but look across the park to how they did it. Some really smart transfer and football decisions. As ever, we have been left behind.

Paul Niklas
36 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:48:37
Apart from Calvert-Lewin and arguably Mina, this is was a first-choice 11. That's how bad it is here; the manager is stubborn to the point of no compromise at all.

Why is Simms not on the bench? Why did Delph not start in between Allan and Doucouré, who both were disgraceful last night, particularly Doucouré.

For at least 6 years, we have known we need a right-back, Keane is a Championship defender, Godfrey has no confidence at all… and if you think Gordon is going to make it, then you're sadly mistaken.

You could argue that none of these players would currently get in any side in the Bottom 6 at the moment and teams like Brighton and West Ham put us to shame.

You also can't argue with the investment Moshri has made but you can in his mamagement ability. You can't come into a club like Everton, so entrenched in its past glories, including the supporters, and not make unpopular changes; this is the problem at the top.

Bill Kenwright has to retire his position, as much as I admire him. You can't take over a club that needs a massive cultural and operational change and appoint the Everton in the Community leader as CEO – it is beyond belief they did that but this is Bill's influence.

Brands may be concentrating on the Academy – then say so! If it brings through some players which are needed – he had not one player on the pitch last night that you could say he is reponsible for buying.

Everton need a bomb under the whole structure and Moshri now has to act and remove the whole board to allow someone to come in and shake everything to its foundations.

There is no point, in my opinion, in building the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock without this happening as we will still be just a shit club with a shit team in a new home.

I am a club man – not a team man; I believe in Everton and love this club but the leaders and subsequently the players now are draining that from me and many others. Time for change that only Moshri can now make.

Bobby Mallon
37 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:50:30
Mark Ryan @28.

It does not say what we are all saying because it does not lay the blame at Kenwright's door. Yes, he is totally to blame – alongside Moshiri.

Jerome Shields
38 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:50:59
The defeat was because of Everton's players: poor positioning, poor pass completion in midfield, errors, and poor goalkeeping. Most of the goals came from Everton's misplaced passes in midfield, players out of position, and not tracking back, and in at least two occasions, by poor goalkeeping on the near post.

Rondon going off scuppered any chance of drawing level since Everton lost shape and Coleman finished them.

This is still down to effort and work on the training ground. Rondon looked fit from the start. Richarlison, Townsend, Godfrey, Coleman, Digne, Keane, Doucouré and Allan looked unfit. Some of this may be due to carrying injuries.

But one has to question what is going on at Finch Farm regarding recovery and training. Better personnel were brought into Medical Services and Training. Is there a need for more changes and why are some players' recoveries taking so long?

There is no competition for places, largely due to poor recruitment. There is no money available to provide for it, due to waste of resources. It is blatantly obvious that the Board is not up to the job, and they will be staying. We will not hear a peep from the Board or Finch Farm's familiar faces and the Academy is so far gone, it is now irrelevant to the current situation.

Benitez's tactics were right for playing Liverpool, he has not taken into account the deficit in tactical and technical ability of the Everton players to implement it, unlike Ancelotti. Ancelotti put this down to lack of work and effort. It seems that little has changed and why would it with limited competition for places?

Benitez set up the team as he means to go forward. At least he got Everton through one game trying it; hopefully they will improve for the next game. Some players will have to redeem themselves, the only thing that is currently available that is anything like competition.

Benitez has to be provided money in January, but it will be a tall order getting the right players, who will want to chance their reputations at Everton.

Still, I don't think that Everton will be relegated.

The problem for Moshiri is that the truth is out and is in the mainstream media: Board, players, attitude, Finch Farm, Brands and years of incompetence. Benitez is not being blamed. Moshiri, IMO, has no choice but to back Benitez to sort out the mess.

The trio in the main stand looked uncomfortable, as they should be, and may now feel they have to shaft their mates to stay in their positions. I wonder how the 'Long Term Permant Strategic plan' is looking.

Brian Harrison
39 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:53:49
Well, for the first time ever in over 60+ years of supporting Everton, I came out of the ground and felt absolutely nothing: no anger, no frustration… just a resignation that we are light-years away from the team I started supporting as a boy.

I know many posters have a list of people to blame for our demise and they are all culpable, some greater than others, and I think the problems are so deep seated that it will take more than a new manager to fix all the ills that abound in our club. I would think any manager in charge at present would need to channel all their energy on improving the first team.

There are good arguments for sacking Benitez and equally good reasons to keep him in charge. Moshiri has found sacking managers very easy but it's the hard part of replacing them that Moshiri struggles with. I would certainly say if he is considering sacking Benitez, then he needs to have his replacement ready immediately as the last thing Everton can afford, if Moshiri took this action, is any delay in replacing Benitez.

I personally think he will give Benitez a few more weeks to try and turn things around but there will come a time when, if Benitez hasn't managed to turn things around, then Moshiri will have no choice.

I know some supporters have said that we are sleepwalking into relegation, but I think Moshiri and Usmanov have invested too much to just sleepwalk into relegation. But, for me, the question is: Given the appointments they have made so far, would you trust them to get the next appointment right?

Moshiri, when he came in, obviously decided that he wanted to implement a DoF strategy and brought in Walsh to work with Koeman; when that failed, he brought in Brands to work with Silva and subsequent managers. I think we need to ask Moshiri: Have the DoFs been allowed to carry out the roles he envisaged or not? And is this because they were poor appointments or were they over-ruled and side-lined by the various managers they worked for.

So many questions and so little time to find the answers. If we don't avoid relegation then I don't see a quick fix, more likely become a Leeds who were once at the very top of the tree, like we were some decades back, but struggled to get back up into the big league.

Jim Bennings
40 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:58:59
Have to laugh the way people keep on saying play the youth. Has anyone seen the standard of the Under-23s and the performances?

They are nowhere near ready and to throw them into to a sinking ship just to finalize imminent relegation is cruel.

The club is rotten from top to bottom and that starts with the jobs for the boys like Unsworth at youth level.

The club is too far gone.

Rennie Smith
41 Posted 02/12/2021 at 09:59:07
I felt for Seamus last night. Yes, he had a mare but we know there will be no-one more gutted than himself and he doesn't deserve the kind of shit thrown at him on from some posts. He's been asked to do a job against arguably the current best player in the world.

I stayed to the end, as always, not to boo, but to just see the reaction and I don't think it was as bad as some people thought or the media hoped. It's easy to scream and shout but sometimes you have to hold your hands up and say well done.

They are a hell of a team at the moment, even though it kills me to say that. They are everything we're not, easy on the ball, pace, movement, intensity, everyone knows their job. They could rip any team to shreds when they want; we were just an easy target.

Bobby Mallon
42 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:03:42
We need to start with playing young hungry players, with a manager that has a philosophy that the DoF buys into and recruits players that will fit into that philosophy. Leeds is that example.

I would be happy to lose 1-4 if the effort and passion was there and we had an identity.

Gary Smith
43 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:06:27
Jim, I have to laugh at the way you do Alan Hanson's laugh off the idea of youth strategy.

1) They can't be any worse than Iwobi and Rondon.

2) When there is a path and strategy that gives them obvious opportunities (à la Dortmund, Lille, Leipzig, etc), then we will attract and retain better quality youths.

Open your mind a bit, and stop clinging to mediocrity and a plan to survive with aged journeymen like Rondon, Townsend, Delph, Begovic and others.

Mike Hughes
44 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:11:42
I posted the following on the BBC in response to McNulty's article an hour ago:

“There has been something wrong from top to bottom for years. Half a billion pounds invested to take us backwards. Poor decision making. Lack of vision, strategy, tactics - on and off the pitch. Mediocrity reigns.

EFC is primarily a charity.
We also do trips down Memory Lane very well.
The football affairs seem to be relegated down the agenda.
I think that may be fitting given where we are heading.”

I've nothing positive to suggest. But I have been saying there is something wrong at the heart of this club for many years now.

If the vision, strategy and tactics are not robust across all elements of the club – with personnel to match – any amount of money is going into a black hole.

A total shambles.

I hate to say it but it was men v. boys last night. On the evidence of the first 15 minutess, we got off lightly.

Lee Gorre
45 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:14:15
Rennie,

I'm not sure why you felt sorry for Coleman.

First of all, Salah was on the other flank so his job wasn't to keep him quiet. Second, much as he has always been one of my favourite players of recent years, he summed up everything wrong with last night's performance – way to pumped up to the point of berating players as early as the first minute, loose control on many occasions and dreadful use of the ball.

On the manager, I don't understand anyone defending him, whether he suffers for having no money and an average squad of players or not. There is no excuse for not being properly prepared for games, no excuse for poor tactics and coaching, and no excuse for boring the pants off us all with stale football.

He was – as with a number of other managers – a poor appointment and better to cut the ties now than let this drag on any longer. We can't keep changing managers but we will until we make the right appointment and that needs to be a properly thought-out decision, thinking to the next 10+ years, not necessarily the same manager but a structure that has longevity.

Finally on injuries, there is no point hiding behind excuses – we bought Gomes and Mina when both were already injured and they didn't play until November in their first season. Gomes in particular has a long track record of unavailability for games. It's no surprise both remain complete sick notes.

Delph was another bought with a history of being injured more than fit, and again nothing has changed. The only one we have really been unlucky with is Calvert-Lewin.

Justin Doone
46 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:18:44
What I want to see is a positive reaction. The mistakes are not acceptable.

I'm trying to think how the current squad can be shaken up from their slumber.

Against any opposition, the mistakes should not become acceptable. I'm not wanting to blame individuals but we do need to be more ruthless.

Pickford, Coleman, Allan, Richarlison are giving the ball away too cheaply and making silly mistakes. Is it time to be bold and drop them?

Simms, Kenny, Dobbin, Gordon to replace and start the next game. Not great options and that's probably why we have become an inconsistent mid-table team.

Rennie Smith
47 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:24:02
You miss my point, Lee@45.

I feel sorry for him because we know he cares, unlike some of the other feckless twats. Salah may have started over there, but they are so quick and interchange positions so well, it would make a young lad's head spin, never mind a 33-year-old's.

And why not berate players after one minute? Surely that's what we've been asking for, isn't it? They could have been 3 or 4 up within 15 minutes.

Bobby Mallon
48 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:24:16
Brands has been involved in the transfers of:

Richarlison
Kean
Bernard
Virginia
Nkounkou
Digne
Mina
Allan
Rodriguez
Sidibé
Gomes
Zouma
Lössl
Delph
Gbamin
Iwobi
Branthwaite
Godfrey
Olsen
Doucouré
King.

For me, the only players I believe he actually scouted were Godfrey, Kean, Nkounkou, Virginia, Branthwait, Digne, Mina, and Doucouré. I don't believe he wanted the others; they were down to the managers, not the DoF.

We have loads of cover for positions but they have been loaned out to get their wages off the bill. Kenny for example is no less a player than Coleman but is never played and Coleman is 33; he can't keep playing this many games.

Len Hawkins
49 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:27:03
You can name names all day who needs to go but the first out of the door should be Kenwright, Brands close behind, then a cull of Kenwright's rubbish at Finch Farm. Let them go back to polishing the medals they won in their playing days… then, after a minute, off to the Jobcentre.

Silva has actually got Fulham playing good football but instant success is the benchmark and the so-called Best Managers in World football can't guarantee that.

January is going to be loans because an FFP points reductions would guarantee relegation.

Brian Harrison
50 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:27:22
I think an interesting stat is that 7 of the team that played last night were part of the team that won at Anfield last season.
Tony Abrahams
51 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:30:26
How can a genuine Evertonian sit there with a little smug smirk on the other side of his face, when Everton are being comprehensively outplayed by Liverpool?

It was intriguing what Brands said: "Is it just the players?" I saw this man in Manchester during the summer, and when I said that I believe that there is a cancer within Everton Football Club, his stare was enough for me.

I'd love to hear the man elaborate on what he said at the end of last night's game to one angry fan, because I believe there is a real battle for supremacy going on behind the scenes, with the two camps involved, using different media outlets.

Maybe I'm just paranoid and looking for something that's not there, and I'm probably also a lunatic, because I've never felt for even one minute that Bill Kenwright is a genuine died-in-the-wool Evertonian, because I personally think he's been kidding the life out of loads of genuine Blues for years.

Tony Abrahams
52 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:31:07
What's interesting about that stat, Brian?
Christopher Timmins
53 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:32:17
There has to be immediate and substantial change at the club. Different contributors have different views as to what is needed. For what it's worth, I think that the first big decision has to be to scrap the DoF model, it has not worked and that means that Brands has to go.

Secondly, the manager has to be given sole responsibility for the purchase and sale of players, absolutely no interference.

Thirdly, a decision has to be made as to who the manager should be, the current occupant or someone else? On balance, I think the current manager should be given funds to purchase the players needed to keep us out of a relegation scrap in the January window and given until the end of the season to turn things around.

A right-back, a centre-half to replace Keane and Mina (one foot already on the plane to Italy), a central midfielder who is not solely one-dimensional, and the recalling of the left-back sent out on loan to Belgium would be a major help.

In the medium term, Kenwright needs to be replaced at the top of the tree; however, that's not an immediate priority and won't be decisive in keeping us in the Premier League come May.

Paul Niklas
54 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:33:15
Bobby Mallon,

Silva tried to get Doucouré at the same time as Richarlson. Doucouré just came later, no Brands influence there at all.

Everton had secured Digne without Brands; Allan was Ancelotti, full stop... therefore we are in agreement the team that started had nothing to do with him. The rest of the list... probably, but they can't or won't ever be good enough.

Barry Hesketh
55 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:36:35
The Echo reporting that Rondon will be absent for Monday's game with Arsenal, also report that Everton are not expecting the No 9 [Calvert-Lewin] to be fully fit again before Christmas with Benitez saying, earlier this week, the club "need to be careful" with his return to the side.

I have great suspicions that Calvert-Lewin may not appear for Everton ever again because, as soon as the window opens, I fully expect him to move elsewhere. I could be wrong of course.

Jimmy Hogan
56 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:37:37
Every player looked anxious and afraid from the kick-off. There were mistakes in controlling the ball, too may passes that went astray, and our usual tendency to hoof the ball out of defence instead of passing it out. We just can't handle pressing teams.

My heart tells me that Rafa should go, but my head says we have to stick with a manager for once instead of panicking. This will probably be a crap season, but let's see if he can turn it around next season.

ps: Why wasn't Moshiri there? Did he predict the toxic atmosphere?

Robert Tressell
57 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:40:20
Barry, I think Calvert-Lewin will stay till the end of the season because it's unclear whether Newcastle, the likeliest buyers by far, will stay up.

However, I am starting to wonder whether Richarlison might leave in January to free up money for reinvestment across the team.

Derek Moore
58 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:42:40
Jimmy,

Moshiri is a Monaco tax exile. Due to his tax arrangements, Moshiri is limited to how many days he can spend in the UK in a calendar year.

Steve Brown
59 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:47:09
Perhaps Mike Bassett is the answer, he also only plays '4-4-bloody-2'.
Peter Neilson
60 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:48:03
Regardless of whether Brands identified a player or the manager did, his role is Director of Football. Every player who has come in on his watch is his responsibility.

If he's being over-ruled in signings, tough, he's still, of his own volition, DoF.

Jumped or pushed – the rats will start leaving the sinking ship.

Alexander Murphy
61 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:49:02
We have finally become exactly and precisely what we all fear the most.

We have become losers.

Fighting amongst ourselves.
Pointing hatred at our pathetic board.

I've for a long time said that Kenwright (as devoted Evertonian as he is, as a tremendous caring person) hasn't the nuts to lead our club. He hasn't.

1995 since we won a trophy. Our longest barren spell.

Who has been at the top table?

Ken Williams
62 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:51:00
Let's be honest, nothing will happen to the Board of Directors, they will carry on sitting in the Directors Box, laughing after every loss, not one of them knows how to run a football club.

They were hired to move the club forward; in any other business, they would've been sacked long ago, but no, they will sack Rafa and carry on blagging a living.

We all thought Moshiri was an astute businessman. I think we've all been proved wrong on that point. It's sad to say that, with our current board and player squad, we are going nowhere.

I for one don't know what the solution is.

Barry Hesketh
63 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:51:18
Apparently, Moshiri has texted his mate Jim White earlier today:

Moshiri claimed that the manager "needs more time" after another shocking result for the club, with his side now without a Premier League win in eight matches. Source: Echo

Alec Gaston
64 Posted 02/12/2021 at 10:52:27
Reflecting on the game, it's impossible to know where to start. Hate the team, hate the manager, hate the tactics, hate people throwing bottles onto the pitch, hate the board… but I will always love the club.

I spent until midnight consoling my 10-year-old son who is so disillusioned. He asked me “When will we ever win something, Dad?” I couldn't give him a credible answer.

We are in trouble but I will be at every match supporting my team – managers, players, investors will come and go, they don't love the team, they are employed by it.

The only consistent is us the support – love them or hate them at the moment we have to “support” our way out of this mess. If we don't, we will go down with no prospect of coming back.

Bob Parrington
65 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:04:09
Not surprised to see such a negative trail of posts on here after the loss to the shite. However, if we analyse the game, they had all of the running in the first 25 minutes and then we came back at them. For the Rondon haters, sorry, but he was doing a pretty good job.

In to the second half and we continued to do well until Seamus fucked up really badly and, who else, Salah was on hand to stuff up the whole of the comeback. If this hadn't occurred it might have ben a different result entirely.

So let's get rid of the pity party and get behind the team and its management because outright negativity does shit good for anybody other then the opposing teams.

I'm just as pissed off with the results as anybody else but outright negativity does none of us any good.

Clive Rogers
66 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:07:02
To the people calling for youngsters to be picked, they are not good enough or not ready, fact. We have produced one Premier League player in the last 20 years, Barkley. Our youth system is a complete write off.
Laurie Hartley
67 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:07:17
Kim # 32,

“I don't believe he has sufficient football knowledge or contacts of his own”. Correct about the football knowledge but I bet you he has Arsene Wenger's number in his phone and Usmanov definitely would have it.

I look at the photo at the start of Lyndon's article and I ask myself the question – Do those three look like a winning team?

The manager is a separate and more recent issue and should therefore be considered separately but time is not on Moshiri's side – it ain't looking good from where I am sitting.

Barry Hesketh
68 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:10:08
A more detailed version via Everton Blue Army tweet:

Farhad Moshiri's text to Jim White: “Rafa [Benitez] is a good manager and underperformance is largely due to the injuries. He will be supported to add depth to the squad. Managers need time. I have no doubt we will have strong second half to the season.” (Source: talkSPORT)

Joe Bibb
70 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:12:17
Kenwright & Baxendale brag about winning awards for Everton in the Community yet the team haven't won a thing. You still cannot buy Everton merchandise outside the City. We are run like a corner shop who have to compete with Harrods, the whole set up is a joke.

On the pitch, the Fat Spanish Waiter stands on the sideline looking lost, just like his team, yet some supporters say it's not his fault!! What is the answer?

Well for a start, even though you have a Season Ticket, if you boycott the Arsenal match and the cameras show row upon row of empty seats, then maybe Moshiri will start to think his Golden Nest Egg looks unsellable and do something.

Tony Abrahams
71 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:18:09
Bob, I've just listened to one of the very few Liverpudlians I think says if fairly, and his words were that he thought Everton had done brilliantly to get themselves back into the game after the way Liverpool had started, and he wasn't 100% confident when the score was 2-1.

He acknowledged what I'd said about the gulf in class, and said he thought Everton's players had shown a lot of heart to still be in the game before Coleman's dreadful mistake. Although he was surprised that Benitez had chosen to start the game playing with only two central midfield players.


Mick O'Malley
72 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:25:15
Moshiri is in meeting in New York, Jim White spoke to him. Moshiri believes in Benitez, god help us! He seems to think we'll be okay in the second half of the season.

So, in other words, forget winning soon!

Kim Vivian
73 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:27:33
Laurie @67...

I did think about Wenger while I was writing that post and would probably take him as a DoF in a heartbeat but he must be getting on a bit now.

And re the photo at the top – interesting that Brands and Barrett-Baxendale, and the two bods behind them seem to be watching the game whereas Bill looks rather anxiously towards the Gwladys Street. Any banners there last night?

Or am I just speculating...?

James Head
74 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:30:43
The Kenwright propaganda machine is in full swing today, he's already getting defended on talkShite by Jim White as "Blue Bill" the greatest Evertonian since 1878 and Marcel Brands is getting not so subtly nudged into the forefront to take all the blame for the current shitshow.

I think all three of the clowns on the board should go: Brands, Kenwright's stooge Barrett-Baxendale and Everton's greatest ever supporter should be removed from his position ASAP; to see him sit in the Main Stand last night, smugly smirking as the fans' pain turned to anger, was hard to take.

I expect the hierarchy at the club to attempt to keep the divide in the fanbase as wide as possible as they scrabble to save their own necks and sacrifice our position in the Premier League. Moshiri has been a disaster!

Joe McMahon
75 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:30:55
A lot is being made of Calvert-Lewin's absence and, when he returns, fortunes will change. But, as someone stated on this site last night, yes we have missed him but he is an around-the-box goal-poacher not Sergio Aguero, or even Vardy. He won't be able to do it all.

What an absolute shambolic state this club is in.

Jonathan Tasker
76 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:32:09
The very best thing Everton fans can do to force change is to boycott the match on Monday.
Tony Abrahams
77 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:34:08
No Joe, but he gives the team a focal point both on the ground and in the air, and he's also got the pace to run in behind, which shows his overall importance to this team.

Laurie, my Arsenal mate has just texted me and said he thinks Wenger would jump at working for Usmanov, at a club like Everton (a club with real value and tradition!) and he also reckons he's still got a good 5 years left in him!

Barry Hesketh
78 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:38:21
Kim @73

If that picture was taken as it seems just after the fourth goal went in, Bill is probably looking towards the Gwladys Street, watching as lots and lots of Evertonians started to leave the ground at that point. The banner that was on display at Brentford was also unfurled last night on the Gwladys Street.

James @74

It would appear that Moshiri will support Benitez, but didn't he say something similar about Koeman before later sacking him? He also promised to refrain from giving information to Jim White and TalkSport and would instead use more appropriate channels of communication.

As for Brands, if there are issues twixt the Dutchman and the Spaniard, it's likely that Brands will either step down or be asked to step down. Likely as not, the whole circus will continue unchanged for the foreseeable future.

Barry Rathbone
79 Posted 02/12/2021 at 11:53:12
We're just not Everton anymore and, bar a flash-in-the-pan interval in the early '80s we haven't been since 1970. The distinction between us as a proper "scouse" team full of aggression, guile and determination and the wannabe Everton Athletic club founded by John Houlding is monumental.

We are Ormskirk, Maghull, Allerton suburbs to their hard nosed Scotty Road, Paddy's Market in your face Liverpool. Somewhere down the line, we embraced that ludicrous epithet "Grand Old Team" happy to be an aging dowager endlessly gazing at sepia photos of past empire.

When fans indulged Moyes for all those years and allowed him to stay upon breaking news of his Man Utd appointment, we were done. Midst the contrived ovation at Goodison Park, the entity carrying the Everton name was now confirmed as an impostor. Scratch the surface and below was a weird amalgam of Coventry, Southampton, West Brom, Birmingham City etc.

The answer is the same as it's been all these decades but neither owners nor fans have the guts to take it on. Sweep clean the entire squad in one summer blitz, fashioned by a manager demanding players in his own image.

They will play with in-your-face snarling aggression and graft, scared of no-one and burning with ambition. The title "School of Science" can be put in a box till the right to use it has been earned.

In the faint hope it might happen, I hang around... but, till I see it, this ain't no Everton.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

81 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:09:58
Every season in recent years the 'R' for 'Relegation' word raises its head on TW. I always looked at the numbers, our own results against other teams and the results and form of others, and confidently (and correctly) concluded it wasn't going to happen to the Blues.

I still don't think it will happen this season, but the numbers are currently less convincing than they have been in past seasons.

Contrary to some, I have seen no lack of effort, no one shirking their jobs, in the last three losses to City, Brentford and now Liverpool. The fight is there. What is missing is the guile.

Alongside Chelsea, City and Liverpool make up three top, top quality teams. Our destiny will not be determined by performances or results against the likes of those. The gulf to them right now is Grand Canyon deep and wide. It will be determined by the results against the likes of Watford and Brentford. And THAT is my current concern.

Last night Pickford saved us from being 5-0 down in 30 minutes. Anyone calling him out on any of the goals is a fool.

Yet for all their dominance, we dug in, got a good goal back and could even have gone in at the interval on level terms if Doucoure had taken his chance on the stroke of half time.

We were well in the game for 20 minutes of the second half, until the disasterous third goal from our own corner. Small differences and tactics played a part in that.

Two poor plays in the basics by two Everton players - a poor bouncing back pass to Coleman by Gray under pressure. A shockingly bad touch by Seamus in his attempt to claim the ball. But you also have the positive mindset of Klopp and Liverpool, with their most talented player Salah not back defending the Everton corner in his own penalty area, but in the centre circle to support a swift counter.

As others have already mentioned, that completely deflated the team and supporters and the contest was effectively over. Another top player Jota showed his class with sumptious control and finish to rub salt in the wound.

For those calling for the manager's head, to me that is the equivalent of applying a plaster to a patient in open heart surgery.

Personally, I was reassured to read several posters in Michael's live match thread yesterday saying the recent run of results is attributable to and an accumulation of, all that has passed under the near six years of Moshiri's ownership of the club. It is too trite to put this all on Benitez and believe change the manager and everything else changes for the better.

There is a culture of incompetence and failure prevalent throughout the entire Everton infrastructure. Unless and until that is radically overhauled, it will continue, as will our suffering.

SOMEBODY has to take the lead in implementing a deep cleansing culture change at the club. That somebody, as the de facto owner of the club, is Farhad Moshiri.

And therein lies part of the problem. Has he shown himself to be competent in his decision making and appointments to trust him to implement an effective culture change?

Or will it take the Russian bear lurking in the shadows to growl and really shake things up at the club for the better?

Paul Hewitt
82 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:10:50
I see Moshiri has come out in support of Benitez. So can we now stop all this "Sack Rafa" nonsense?
Sean Kelly
83 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:16:22
Them fuckers in that picture look as depressed as I am. I’m sick of this shit.
Trevor Cotterell
84 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:18:03
I'll start by saying I don't have the answers. Too many above seem to think they do, but I've never run a football club (I've run other things!)... I've been an Evertonian for 57 years.

I don't know the Board, but my gut feeling is Moshiri's in it for the money and the kudos of owning a team. He doesn't strike me as an Evertonian but must have some business acumen to have amassed the money he's got.

Kenwright, I believe, is an Evertonian, and he has amassed some wealth in another sphere but, whilst his heart my be with us, it could all be beyond him. The others don't matter that much.

So what about Benitez? Well, if it wasn't for the fact he'd previously managed Liverpool, we'd all have been happy to have got a manager with a proven track record. I suspect too much antipathy is simply based on that – I'm too pragmatic to let that worry me – our club comes first.So what's he done so far?

For a start, he had FPP against him. He knew and accepted that, presumably, but joined us anyway. Many wouldn't have done.

At that start of the season, he brought us a few better than half-decent players (compared to the rest, anyway) for virtually nothing. He had a full squad, injury-free (?) and for the first part of the season, we did way better than anyone would have expected. So what changed?

Too many key players got injured at once, coupled with us playing tougher opposition, and us having no real backup for reasons that weren't the manager's. We have to question the backroom people though – recovery seems to be taking ages far too often.

The result? A run that's pretty much the exact opposite of the first part, so far. So, unless the manager won everything by chance in the past, or has suddenly forgotten everything he knows, you have to question a combination of circumstances and loss of players...

What have we seen elsewhere? Which clubs have been successful over the years? With very few exceptions it's the ones with long-term managers – Man Utd, Liverpool, Arsenal, Man City etc. Even ourselves under Moyes… okay, without the trophies others won, but arguably we punched above our weight given our lack of funds, 'name' players etc.

What have we had? 5 managers in 5 years? Each inheriting an ever-increasing squad of players they may not want, and now we have a manager who isn't even allowed to do anything about it – yet.

Our squad just isn't up to the mark. There's a few half-decent players but loads who are average and plenty who don't really want to be here at all, but we still have to pay them because we can't offload them either. All of which makes it impossible for the current manager...

Did anyone seriously expect anything else as a result yesterday, playing possibly the highest-scoring team in the world right now, and a depth of squad we can only dream of? Really? It wasn't going to happen.

It's going to be painful, but I think we have to stick with Benitez and support him. I think both arguments about our youth are correct – many are probably not quite up to the mark yet, but equally we need to throw them into the mix if only to help them get there (not all at once!). We may suffer a bit along the way but you have to start somewhere.

There's a lot of criticism of the returning players. I suspect they weren't ready but again, he had to risk something – too much clamouring to get them back into the team when they weren't ready.

The next few weeks will probably be horrendous. The rest of the season won't be great, but as long as we stay up and clear out deadwood, and FPP lets us do something next season, we have a way forward. Changing the manager (again) just sends us back to square one (again) and the merry-go-round continues…

Brian Harrison
85 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:29:50
Well, it seems Moshiri has said that Benitez is a good manager and he will be supported. So, unless he changes his mind, and results may do that, it looks like Moshiri is backing Benitez.

Someone said that Wenger would jump at the chance to work with Usmanov; well, let's hope it's for his Megafon company and not Everton. This is the same Wenger whose team and tactics were booed by most Arsenal fans for a full 2 years before he left.

I think before we let Benitez and Moshiri play the injury card, last night there were only two players who may have played that were missing, that's Calvert-Lewin and Mina, so it's hardly 4 or 5 first teamers missing.

This group of players that have been assembled by different managers and DoFs haven't been good enough, and our Premier League placings over the last 5 years tell us this.

There are so many very average players in this squad and, to be honest, other than Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin or Gray' I wouldn't be upset if any of the rest were sold. When you see the gulf in class between them and us last night, it was freighting; they had better players in every position than we did, and – as much as it irks me to say it – they are also very well coached.

I think over the last few decades we have tended to build up our players and most have turned out to be massively disappointing apart from 2 or 3.

But that's what happens when a team has been so poor for so long; we even kid ourselves that mediocre players are better than what they are. Most of these players now wouldn't have got anywhere near a place in any of our successful sides.

We have been fed mediocrity by managers and players for far too long, and it will take a lot more than a new manager to change the level of mediocrity that permeates right through this club from top to bottom.

Ian Riley
86 Posted 02/12/2021 at 12:43:18
Our main goal is staying in the Premier League! Nothing else, nothing more!

No, it's not all the manager's fault. He needs more players in January! Last night was a good result 1-4 after 2 goals down after 20 minutes. We are miles and miles from being a Top 6 club.

Rafa, work harder! Players, work even harder!

Management of this great club! Take a look at yourselves! It's the only way we are going to get out of this mess!!

Sticking together is the only way now! Relegation really is the end!!!

Peter Dodds
87 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:09:49
The sad fact is that the opposition last night are a fantastically well-honed team, technically gifted and intense, like a swarm of bees who never leave you alone. By contrast, the Everton lads pass the ball straight to the other side, or see the ball bouncing off their attempts at a trap, or hitting their heels, or see their attempts at a "round the corner" 50/50 pass yet again going astray… and so on.

The formation may have had a small effect last night but, let's be honest, it was mainly due to the lack of skill and technical ability of the Everton players:

Goal 1 – no man picking up Henderson.
Goal 2 - Godfrey inexplicably falls over the ball, Digne is too high up the pitch.
Goal 3 - Coleman error
Goal 4 - Jota takes the mickey with Allan.

And that's without mentioning the goals that could have been, eg, the terrible marking from our centre-backs in the early minutes. Sadly, Liverpool are the kind of side that will pounce on any error and make any team pay.

The only answer on the playing side is a complete reset. There'll be no money for new players this January – perhaps a loan player – but the summer will be busy. As well as the so-called deadwood who we hope to move on, there's every chance that some or all of Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin and Pickford will move on – not our choice but can we keep them?

The resulting £150M (??) (less any held back to cover losses) will then be last chance saloon – the last "big" pot of money to rebuild the squad. Whether it's Benitez and Brands or someone else who's entrusted with that, we'll see.

Kunal Desai
88 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:10:26
That's it, Moshiri, when the going gets tough, go and send soundbites to your pal Jimmy White. Don't bother communicating and maintaining any dialogue with those that are the heart and soul of this club which are the fans.

He conveniently stayed away from one the biggest games the club plays in the city knowing full well he wouldn't be able to stand the heat. Total shithouse.

Derek Knox
89 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:22:31
Paul H, @ 82, I wish he would come out and show some backbone, and boot that fraud Kenwright right up his big fat jacksie, and Brands and Barrett-Baxendale (Li'l Miss Dynamite) too!

Think you're right in not calling for Rafa's bone-head just at the moment, why doesn't he play some of our very able Reserves? Simms, Dobbin, Warrington and Onyango to name but four! Could they possibly do any worse than their misfiring senior counterparts? Grrr!

Good point, Kunal, regarding Moshiri's noticeable absence in the Muppet Seats!

Rennie Smith
90 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:23:41
Kunal @88,

I'm not sure describing someone who has pumped over £450m into the club and set up a new stadium as "a total shithouse" is very fair, but I get your point.

Paul Niklas
91 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:27:02
Wow, Kunal, you have massively turned the corner from your early season "everything is wonderful" when you will recall you were told otherwise.

This has nothing to do with players on the pitch, it has to do with Everton as an entity and, on that basis, we haven't been one since the war. Yes, we had a decent eighties and a half-decent sixties also but, when you look at it, we haven't been anything since 1987 really. Close to 35 years of abject failure apart from an FA Cup win. The problem with Everton is its reliance and belief it should be run by Evertonians: Kenwright, Barrett-Baxendale, Duncan, Unsy to name a few.

This club needs an overhaul from top to bottom and a CEO with power to do what's necessary – not just a figurehead like now with Bill and Denise. Someone who won't care who he/she upsets as long as it's working.

It all starts now with Moshri appointing someone of that type and letting them get on with it. If we don't, the next 35 years will be the same.

Benitez has to be given a chance and then let's see next season. If I were him, I would get an assistant in like Roy Keane who wants to be back in management and won't stand any shit from anyone. It's the change Everton need to move away from the history that does nothing for the future.

Brent Stephens
92 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:32:24
Derek #89,

"Why doesn't he play some of our very able Reserves? Simms, Dobbin, Warrington and Onyango to name but four! Could they possibly do any worse than their misfiring senior counterparts?"

Repeating myself a bit from the other thread but I would also like to see more than a minute or two at the end of a game for one or two of them.

But, adding to what I said earlier, it's a big step up: if you look at Branthwaite in the U23s (last week for instance), he's head and shoulders better than the the others; but in the first team he just about holds his own (no, not that). It's a big step up.

Raymond Fox
93 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:36:53
The board must take the blame for the situation now because ultimately the buck stops with them.

That's not to say they alone are to blame; Brands and those before him have been a waste of money. Also, add mistakes by a series of managers when buying players.

Sacking Benitez is in no way the answer; he's dropped right into this mess.

Some of the board should go, along with Kenwright and Brands. I also think Duncan as assistant manager has not worked and should go.

Having said that, we have a handful of clubs in the Premier League that have established an advantage that is almost impossible to overcome.

The very best players only want to sign for these clubs with the consequence that all the rest of the clubs have to settle for signing players those clubs don't want.

As a fair competition, the Premier League simply is not one; it's become a bit of a farce. The problem is, we are stuck with the situation because I can't see how we change the status quo.

Craig Walker
94 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:42:05
I'm from Wigan, originally. Different sport but some time in the 80s, when I was still at school, Wigan RLFC (as they were then known) were dumped out of a cup competition unexpectedly by Oldham (I think it was).

The players made too many mistakes, too many handling errors, and lost fairly. Every player, to a man, volunteered to do training the next day on the Sunday which would normally be a day off. Fans used to go and watch them train. Witnesses said they never saw a player drop a ball all session.

That team went on to win 9 Challenge Cup finals in a row, countless league titles and beat the Australian champions in their own back yard. They were voted Team of the Decade across all sports in the 90s at the BBC SPotY awards.

That's how top sports people and winners act. They really want it. They're dedicated to their abilities and their sole focus is improvement.

I haven't seen that belief in an Everton team for decades. The odd player like Cahill or Ferguson seemed to embody the spirit of our club but, on the whole, we've been a team that seem happy to make up the numbers. Players who want to swap shirts with their more illustrious opponents and have stories to tell the grandkids.

I see empty clapping-the-fans gestures and platitudes being trotted out before the next game. These players are earning more money than must of us will ever know. They don't care – they just want to look like they do care.

Last night, I saw Iwobi, laughing in the dugout as his teammates put in another embarrassing show. He can't even conduct himself to a high standard when he's in the dugout.

I wasn't laughing. I was thinking about my lad who has to go to school today and face the flak from glory-hunting fans. Last season's win at Anfield was the first he's experienced.

I was thinking about us all who have to work with RS fans and let them rub our noses in it. Our only defence, as it has been for years, is our glorious history, which is fading with every disappointment.

I've read posters say "We won't get relegated". I'm not so sure, this time. It's not definite that Newcastle won't turn it around given funds in January. Looking at the table, from Brentford downwards, I think a lot of those teams are better than us. I certainly wouldn't fancy us to win away at those grounds and our home form has not improved much since last season.

It feels reminiscent of the Mike Walker days but with no Joe Royle to save us. Worrying times.

Kieran Kinsella
95 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:44:23
Would you rather pay Rafa 20 million to leave or spend that in January on players?
Mick O'Malley
96 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:45:25
No, we won't stop the 'Benitez Out' “nonsense” while that Kopite turns us into his Newcastle side that went down. I will never accept him, he is making us a laughing stock, he is as dull as dishwater. No wonder we are going backwards.

We're chasing the game at home and he brings a defensive midfielder on, or brings Tosun on at 4-1 down with 5 minutes left. He doesn't deserve the job, even Ranieri has got Watford playing better. 4-4-2 at home against Liverpool leaving their 3-man midfield to run all over us.

Every single player has regressed, they look beaten and depressed and he just stands there doing fuck-all with his miserable fucking face while the RS buzz off us.

What a loser he is. Do us a favour and fuck back to the Wirral, you are yesterday's man.

Benitez Out!

John Raftery
97 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:46:52
I agree with those who say we should stick with Benitez. We started the season well but the predictable injuries and suspensions have restricted the already limited options for refreshing the starting eleven.

As for the bench, it is indicative the pitch side announcer no longer bothers telling us who is on it. Presumably that is to spare us embarrassment.

People calling for one or two of the Under-23s to be given a chance are clutching at straws. Anthony Gordon was regarded as the best prospect coming through but, after nearly 2 years in and around the squad, we await his first goal.

He has one assist from what I can remember. He is not to blame for that, far from it, but he would be nowhere near the first team regular he currently is if the squad was at Premier League level.

As for Brands, he most certainly is partly culpable for our present state. He is, however, not alone. He is often blamed for the signings of Schneiderlin and Sigurdsson but they and the clutch of No 10s arrived a year before he did.

The way forward? In the next few weeks we simply must start mustering a few points together. If not against Arsenal, the games versus Leicester, Burnley and Newcastle must be seen as the opportunity to turn the season around.

A couple of shrewd additions in January would help us limp, metaphorically but possibly also physically speaking, to the end of the season.

Changes off the pitch are hardly going to help us this season. In the short term, it's players we need.

Kunal Desai
98 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:51:42
Paul #91 - I've never maintained everything is wonderful with Everton, you could probably review my many postings over the years which other posters would describe as being 'negative'
I was giving the side credit where credit was due, we all know full well that beneath the surface the erosion of this club have been evident for decades. I've wanted Kenwright gone since 2004. Rooney being sold, Kings Dock fiasco and Fortress fund investments. The list is endless from there on.

Just to level set here that giving praise and credit where it's due doesn't mean all is wonderful.

Gary Smith
99 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:54:20
Kieran, where’s this copy of Rafa’s contract that states a £20m payoff please? Apparently in £4m a year with 2.5 years left. I doubt we were stupid enough to not leave a get out of jail card in it.
Brent Stephens
100 Posted 02/12/2021 at 13:57:02
Mick #96 "we’re chasing the game at home and he brings a defensive midfielder on".

Mick, I might be wrong but I thought I saw Doucoure more advanced once Delph came on, suggesting it was a positive not a defensive move.

Steve Brown
101 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:00:27
Kieran, we have not idea what the termination clause is in Benitez's contract. My guess is that it will be structured for a limited pay-out in season one.
Kunal Desai
102 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:05:05
Rennie #88. From a financial perspective yes he has invested (not my money) most which has been wasteful in the majority.
For me its the basic he's failed to address and that is the infrastructure that runs right through the club. Starts with those at the top, the hangars are all still there.
The right infrastructure and investment goes hand in hand in my opinion.
Damien Coleman
103 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:05:40
Remember the days under David Moyes, when we all used to think ‘We’ve got the base of a fantastic squad here. A rich owner with a few hundred million and a manager with world class pedigree and we’ll be a genuine force.’?

It’s an absolute travesty how that panned out. £250million or so spent buying Klaassen, Tosun, Walcott, Bolasie, Iwobi, Schneiderlin, Kean, Keane, Mina et al. None of whom would have got into Walter Smith’s first team, let alone Moyes’. Completely overtaken by the likes of Leicester, Wolves and West Ham despite probably out-spending all three clubs put together (certainly when player and manager wages are taken into account).

A succession of big-name managers, none of whom seemed to arrive with any kind of plan or mission statement or even basic motivation for the job (Koeman, anyone?).

A youth system that appears to have completely shut up shop with regard to preparing players for the step up to the big league. Even in the horrendous 1990s, before social media, there would always be excited whispers about Billy Kenny, Danny Cadamarteri, Francis Jeffers, Wayne Rooney etc… not all came to fruition in the way we hoped (understatement, I know) but at least we had SOMETHING to feel optimistic about.

I’m losing hope here. Do we have ANYTHING to cling to at the moment? I’m starting to feel nostalgic for the 1990s, which can’t be a good sign.

Steve Brown
104 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:05:52
Brent, we were 3-1 down when Delph was brought on... in the 73rd minute!

Granted, it rectified Benitez's disastrous decision to play two in midfield against Liverpool's three. But, it was to better manage out a game that was already lost. And of course, it didn't work.

David Pearl
105 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:16:09
Delph should have started but didn't. Given we'd just got ourselves back into the game before half time surely that was the time to bring on Delph and stop the problems we all saw in the first half, and not for the last 15 ish minutes.

So will Delph play on Monday and we go a 4141 or 433. Or will our manager stick with that system and we are about to see Tosun given his final chance? Answers on the back of a stamp please.

Bill Gall
106 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:27:41
First of all I never watched the game last night because the score was what I and about 90% of other supporters who wrote up before the game expected. From reading the reports last night Everton played just as bad as previous weeks but it seems that most of the anger came out last night because of who we were playing.
Regardless of who we were playing they were a premier league team in outstanding form with a goals for at 39 and goals against 12 against a struggling team with goals for 16 and against 20. They score an average of 3 per game with an average of less than 1.
The major decline in this club started when Moshiri took over and fired manager after manager and I believe with the blessing of a majority of the supporters, but the leaving of Ancelotti was the major factor in the decline.
The people who are responsible for the playing side of the club are the Director of Football and the people who he is responsible for and that is the manager of the first team and below him, the only other person they are responsible to is the owner.
We have ended up in this position with now having to continue with a manager, who a lot of people did not want, including myself, but to fire him I am afraid we would have a problem in getting another experienced manager and would end up with a lower league manager.
Pete Clarke
107 Posted 02/12/2021 at 14:43:11
We have indeed played some top teams lately and did not expect too get anything from. Liverpool played lovely simple football last night. However, it was only a few days ago that we played a very poor Brentford who themselves had some players missing. Benitez experience should have got us 3 points in that game so how are we or Moshiri for that matter really expecting much to change in the coming games?
Rondon could not have gotten worse than his earlier form so it was good to see him put a shift in last night. His bread and butter is getting goals though and I don’t see him getting many or assisting many either and yet Benitez thinks he’s fine.
The midfield are just too short on quality to get the team moving forward as they are generally too occupied with defending and the passing from them is absolutely dreadful.
Our only real attacking players are Richie, who looks a bit lost, Townsend, who has been poor the past few games and Gray who definitely gives me hope.
The two Centre halves are going to give opposition chances and the fullbacks offer very little at both end of the field so all in we are not going to get much better any time soon unless Benitez can do something he’s never done before and that’s to get a poor team to play well. When he’s had success he’s had top players at his disposal. He finished 6th in the Chinese league and I did not see any top clubs clamoring to take him on in the recent managerial merry go round.
I don’t blame Benitez for this mess by the way but I want him gone ASAP because even if he steadied the ship and saved us he will never go on to make us great. He does not have it in him to do that so why hang on to him with the risk of it being him to possibly take us down.
We have Arsenal, Palace, Chelsea and Leicester coming up which is tough enough and then we face all of the teams at the bottom which will probably decide our top flight status. Right now I would not back us to beat any of them.
DCL may make a difference but so far our experienced manager is failing in all areas to get more from the players.
I don’t know who’s out there to take over but we better have somebody lined up with those fixtures ahead and a very angry fan base.
If Moshiri does not start some kind of shake up then he will be hounded out of Goodison himself.
OUT
1 - Kenwright
2 - Brands
3 - Benitez
4 - Ferguson
5 - Unsworth
Matt Hunter
108 Posted 02/12/2021 at 15:09:18
The first match I attended at four years old was when we beat Luton 3-1 in 87 and got the championship, since then I've followed the club go from one disaster to another and nothing absolutely NOTHING will change until the board and whole regime is gone. Even when going to school in the 90’s when we were mostly hopeless the perception of Everton was that we were a huge club. That all changed when Kenwright got his hands on the club and proceeded to completely change the image of the club into an narcissistic image of himself (plucky under dog punching about his weight).

There was a season some years ago when Everton were on a high after taking 72 points and played some of the best football I'd personally seen them play, in all the years that I’ve had a season ticket (20+). Martínez was over the next two seasons scapegoated and hounded out the club (have any of his predecessors done as well?) ultimately though it was the fault of Bill Kenwright, if you go back to losing the semi-final against Man.Utd it's worth remembering that Besic was playing right back and Gibson who could barely walk during that match was playing in midfield, it's also worth remember that in previous derby humiliations Oviedo has played right back, in another Stones had played right back an unfit Jags had played as well as a guy who had muscle fatigue from running (Alcaraz). That was down to Kenwright and his pathetic under funding of the squad which left us with an aging defence and a Gk who was completely gone and another who was at best a number 2 Gk certainly not one who should be playing for a Premier league team. I mention all this because in the race to blame Martinez, Kenwright got off sock free.

Kenwright is the man who went through one CEO after another until he found one that just says "yes" to everything he says and makes him feel important, see Birch and Wyness. Bill finally got his man in Robert Elstone a man who's previous work at the world famous Castleford Tigers probably made him over qualified for the club. As a side story a few years ago I did some work in Singapore, it's amazing how popular the EPL is in Singapore I couldn't tell you how many people I saw walking around in Lpool and Man. Utd shirts. I remember going in one giant sports shop after another looking to see if any sold Everton shirts. Eventually I found a sports shop that even had every shirt you could imagine even Cardiff and Leeds shirts still no Everton shirt. So I asked the shop owner why they had every shirt apart from an Everton one, he told me that they weren't allowed to sell Everton shirts, the Everton Singapore supporters club had to buy shirts from kitbag as Everton had signed all rights over to them for £5 million which meant the massive Asia merchandise market was sold for chump change. That's a little insight into how utterly pathetic the management of Everton football club had been. That's before we talk about Kenwright's and his famous attempts at getting a new ground “Goodison on the water” “the money is in the bank” and the Tesco stadium both situations were embarrassing as was selling the training ground to Liverpool city council.

As to the current ex school teacher CEO can anyone ANYONE? Please? tell me what qualifies her for the job? I mean, I’m clueless as to what her qualification are other than being Bill’s friend. Laughable! Kenwright’s tentacles even stretch to the youth set-up with the employment of people like Jeffers, Baines, Ebrell and most laughable of all Baxter I guess it all helps to feed Kenwrights narcissism.

In the end the Kenwright got his patsy that he’d been looking for in Moshri a man who knows as much about football as my dog. The one thing you can’t do is separate the foundation of a football club from it’s fans yet with Allardyce and the current manager the club have actually managed to kill off the heart of the fans, this is the ultimate disgrace when it happens at club what follows is death (see Sunderland, Newcastle, Man City and Aston Villa). You can’t blame Moshri though because he doesn’t understand football and eventually he will go the way of Lerner, Hicks, Gillett, Gaydamak, Short and the other clueless owners playing at football who eventually get tired of humiliating themselves and losing money.

Money isn’t the answer because going forward who will Everton sign to replace the current bunch of gutless losers, we can moan at the terrible array of expensive disasters that we have signed but we should remember the utter rubbish we narrowly managed to avoid signing by pure luck of the top of my head Sissoko, Perez, Gabriel, Maitland-Niles and Belfodil. Who will pick the players the manager see … Allan, James, Grey, Townsend, Richarilson or the DOF see Kean, JPG, Delph or Iwobi. Regarding Iwobi can you imagine being employed to sign players for Everton and having a whole season to scout and choose a player and then purchasing Iwobi. I’ve never seen in 30 years a players so cowardly on a football pitch.

The current regime are trying to continue the con job by selling a vision of a ground. A ground that IF built will be inferior to both Arsenal and Tottenham’s grounds, both of whom have gone backwards since moving homes.

As much as I was personally opposed and upset by the appointment of the current manager I hope the fans can see that the current situation is not his fault and direct any ire to the people responsible for the slow death of Everton Football club.

Five of the teams Everton played when starting the season managed to win 1 out of 23 games between them against other teams in the league. So it wasn’t that Everton made a good start to the season it was that the majority of the opposition (Brighton apart) was useless (two have changed managers since we played them). Make no mistake about it this team is in danger of going down. If they go they won’t come back for a long time, not with the people who run this club.

Derek Knox
109 Posted 02/12/2021 at 15:16:14
Brent @ 92, irrespective of who is actually accredited to have said it (Mao, Confucius, Lao Tzu, et al) the message is still the same " Even The Longest Journey Must Start With The First Step " applies !

When you can snatch these pebbles from my hand Grasshopper, you will have learned too ! 😜😂💙

Matt Henderson
110 Posted 02/12/2021 at 15:34:26
Any removal of Benitez is going to have a minimal impact, as far as improvements are concerned, in the short term and almost no impact at all long term. As most are saying, unless we sort things out off the field there will be no sustainable improvement anywhere.

We have a CEO with, as far as I am aware, no track record running a football club and got the job purely because she was working at Everton in another capacity already. No other Club in the league would have hired her.

We have a junior and development setup almost exclusively run by ex Everton people with no proven track record in this field and having purely got the job, it seems, on the basis they were Everton people. Fairly certain most of these players also would not have been hired by any other teams in the league. Is the lack of juniors coming through down to them or poor recruitment? Who knows but with no proven track record it is difficult to see why they were hired or point to anything that gives confidence they will start producing future first team players.

We have a Director of Football who is meant to have a proven track record but appears to have had a mare over the last few years but where it also seems most of the big decisions may be getting made above his head - in which case why have him.

The first thing that needs happening is to hire a CEO with a track record in football. I would be looking at Paul Barber of Brighton, a club that I think is impressively run. All major departments should report to him.

I would also be finding the best junior football head to come here. They'd also likely have a good junior scouting facility.

If we are going to have a DoF then the Club should either get rid of Brands, if he is culpable in all this, or let him do his job if others have been making the decisions. He needs to come up with a long term plan.

None of the changes off the field are going to make sudden changes immediately, it will be a long project with hopefully incremental improvements but where everyone is able to see we at least have a plan moving forward.

The first thing the Club should do is come out and acknowledge they have made some massive errors in the past 5 years and that they are trying to learn from it and instigate change but that it will take time. And stop hiring people purely on their past affiliation with Everton. Hire the best! It is going to be a long time before Everton is regularly challenging for trophies even if they get everything off the field right today but my view is that Benitez is a long way down the list of priorities that need changing.

Bobby Thomas
111 Posted 02/12/2021 at 16:03:44
THIS:

The first thing that needs happening is to hire a CEO with a track record in football.

Brent Stephens
112 Posted 02/12/2021 at 16:18:00
Steve #104 "Brent, we were 3-1 down when Delph was brought on... in the 73rd minute!"

Steve, maybe my post wasn't clear enough. I wasn't commenting on the timing of the substitution and whether it was early enough; I was simply saying that I thought the substitution was to allow Doucoure to get more forward.

Matt Henderson
113 Posted 02/12/2021 at 16:47:00
And I have just heard the guy captured on the tv last night talking to Brands phone in to talk sport and say that he asked Brands who of those players have you signed, to which Brands replied 'I do not make these decisions'. Two things on this, why have a DoF if you are not going to let him do his job and also it doesn't say much for Brands character if he is happy to let others over rule him whilst staying here, presumably, just to collect an easy wage.
Mick O'Malley
114 Posted 02/12/2021 at 16:58:25
Brent above, it was like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted, to late!
Brent Stephens
115 Posted 02/12/2021 at 17:01:31
Mick, fair enough. I just thought the point might not be the timing but that the Delph substitution might be a defensive substitution, which I don't think it was (Doucoure being allowed to push on).
Mick O'Malley
116 Posted 02/12/2021 at 17:21:37
Brent I know I’ve hammered Benitez but the players are letting us down big time as well, some of the basic mistakes they are making is schoolboy stuff, most of these players are international’s but fail to do the basics, it really is a piss poor squad, Benitez is not solely to blame I just think he should be getting more out of them, I’m frustrated as hell that the club I’ve loved for 50 years is in this state, I’ve had some great times following them everywhere in my younger years, it’s so sad that this great club we love has become a basket case, and then to have our noses rubbed in it by the RS is soul destroying
Brent Stephens
117 Posted 02/12/2021 at 17:53:38
Mick, that's my take as well - i.e. players letting us down, but / and Benitez not blameless.

I rarely go for single-cause explanations in affairs like this. Which just makes it bloody difficult to know with any certainty what to change and where to start. and part of the problem there is that too often we're just guessing at exactly who makes which decisions in the club, re signings and the rest of it.

Graham Mockford
118 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:17:22
Matt 110, Bobby 111

The CEO is not involved in footballing matters at all, that’s the Manager and DOF. Her role is running the business side of the club.

Not got a view one way or the other whether she’s doing a good job in that role but it’s definitely harsh to be tarring her with the current shitshow on the pitch.

Kieran Kinsella
119 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:28:45
Quality facial hair on the trio behind the three stooges. Bloke to the right with the Doug McClure sideburns, fellow on the left with the bandit moustache. DBB sitting there worlds away thinking of going on safari for rhino horn, Bill smugly thinking "haha Rafa is going to get it so I am able to avoid blame." And Brands thinking "OK, this is what I will say 'Farhad, let me do my job, I am a professional,' no wait, he might get mad. Bill might say I can't be trusted and leak stories about my red PSV Eindhoven Christmas tree to The Echo. I guess I will just stay silent and hope it blows over."
Dale Self
120 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:32:18
Good thing TW is not social media motivated or this could produce a shitstorm of memes.
Matt Henderson
121 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:32:19
The CEO is the head of the organisation and would normally report to the Chairman of the Board. In short, they are responsible for everything (though not Directly) and all roads lead to her. This is standard for any business. In a normal Company their would, for example, be a Chief Financial Officer responsible for all the finances who would report to the CEO (who probably knows less about finance than the CFO). Likewise heads of marketing, legal etc. etc. would also report to the CEO. The CEO of a football club may not select the players to buy but they should ensure the person doing that job is fit for purpose and should be assessing that persons performance against designated set targets. The CEO is probably the most important person in any Company who sets the direction of all the other elements of the business, and we have one who would likely not be employed by any other Club in the entire football league.
Graham Mockford
122 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:37:56
Matt

A football club doesn’t operate on the model you describe. You are right that in the corporate world the CEO is ultimately responsible for the entire operation of a business, I should know I did it for 10 years.

But a football club is different. Benitez does not report to her, she has no influence on football matters, absolutely zero.

There are lots of people who should be held responsible for our footballing performance, she is not one of them

Matt Hunter
123 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:38:30
Graham Mockford 118, what qualifications does Baxendale or the previous patsy have to run the business side of a EPL team?
Dale Self
124 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:41:51
Kim, the square root of fuck all. That is brilliant and has made the whole miserable trip worth it. I'll be using that regularly.
Matt Henderson
125 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:47:15
Ed Woodward takes most of the heat at Man U for failed recruitment and he is the CEO, likewise Daniel Levy, so it seems some football Clubs operate in the same manner as a normal business operation? Benitez should report to the DoF who should, in my view, report to the CEO but likely does not in our case. And even if that is not the case, given the football side and the business side of things basically coexist at a football club the CEO surely needs to know their football. Perhaps, if this is not the case at Everton, this is one of the problems
Graham Mockford
126 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:51:07
Matt

Well that of course is a different question. I assume you accept she’s not involved in footballing matters.
I only know what is in the public domain, she had a charity background and came into the club with EITC where it appears she did a very good job. She got promoted on the back of that.
As I said I don’t know how she is performing, traditionally you would probably judge that on a number of financial KPIs. But given the COVID disruption to businesses it’s probably hard to judge. Ultimately that’s a call for Moshiri.

But back to my original point, she’s got nowt to do with footballing matters.

Or perhaps you could enlighten me with how you think she’s failing, I’m all ears

Raymond Fox
127 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:56:17
I don't believe that relegation will be an issue when we get to the end of the season.
Lets be honest I don't think many thought much of our chances of a high finish at the start.
If I recall most were saying we would be around 10 to 12 position.
The real problem is the League is dominated by a handful of clubs and the rest are playing for 6th or 7th downwards at best.
Sure the club is badly run and we have been unlucky on some fronts but the Prem. is not a fair competition, who ever has a squad to match the usual top 5 or 6.
Leicester performed a miracle but I'll bet my house it wont happen again.
Matt Hunter
128 Posted 02/12/2021 at 18:59:30
Graham Mockford 126, Baxendale is good at sending pointless emails to fans. Not sure she is much use at anything else.

I'm sure she is good mates with Bill though ;)

The point is look at the cv's of the people appointed an assistant at Castleford Tigers and the current woman. Do you think based on her c.v she would even get an interview for such a job at any other football club.

Matt Henderson
129 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:01:03
Well one way she has failed is to have mismanaged the finances to such an extent that we are now the equivalent of bankrupt due to FFP. I know not all of this was on her watch but the last couple of years were. Do you accept the premise that a CEO of any Company, be it football related or otherwise, should be able to demonstrate some expertise in the industry they are operating in? Two things that Man U and Everton have in common is that they have both squandered loads of dough on poor recruitment and with apparently no plan in place and also that the people who head up the business side of things have no knowledge of football. A football Club can not succeed on the business side of things unless they are successful in the football side of things.
Bill Gall
130 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:11:09
Because as males we played football we are supposed to now more than a female, who gets the comments of what does she know about football.
I have said before Everton is a huge business that has a lot of work going on behind the scenes that doesn't involve the team on match day but involves making sure that everything is in order for the game to be played.
The one industry that I have spent most of my career is mining with some of the largest companies in North America and have attended conferences with board members whose Chairman and CEO both male and female have never been underground or in a mill but can answer all questions on mining or direct you to a director who is responsible.
Matt do you know or have you ever attended a board meeting at Everton to be sure that Brands does not report to the CEO.
The Director of Football is responsible for all actual football from the manager down to the youngest players. and this is the 4TH manager he has had to work with since he was hired. Silva, Allardice, Ancelloti and Benitez
Jay Harris
131 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:14:40
Graham,
Words fail me.

How can the CEO of Everton football club not be responsible for footballing matters.

Every CEO whether in football or not is responsible for delivering goals (pardon the pun) and financial objectives.

If she is not involved why is she CEO?

You sound like Kenwright with his " I am only the chairman how do I know whats going on".

Its the lack of responsibilty throughout the club that has got us in this mess.

Graham Mockford
132 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:18:29
Jay

You are failing to understand the organisational model. She like all football CEOs doesn’t have control of football matters.

If she did, Benitez would report to her, he doesn’t, he reports directly to the owner ie Moshiri

It’s just how it is

Nicholas Ryan
133 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:22:28
Edinson Cavani to leave Man Utd... I don't suppose... ?!
Bill Gall
134 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:24:54
Graham
Benitez reports to the director of football he reports to the CEO as do all other directors on the board, that is if the board is running as a normal board.
Matt Henderson
135 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:25:38
Bill I couldn't care less if she was a woman, a man, a them or an it so I don't know what you are carrying on about in that regard. It just matters if she is the best person for the role. A good Football Club CEO doesn't have to have played football but before heading up a 'huge business' (as you put it) such as Everton I would expect that person to have demonstrated experience running smaller businesses in the same industry successfully i.e. it would be helpful if she'd been a CEO in a similar business previously. To have not done would obviously mean you lack experience in that industry and why are we taking a risk appointing someone to such an important position with a lack of experience? The reason is likely that Bill has appointed her so he is able to exert some form of influence over the Club still.

Like I said in comments above - we should be looking for the best people whether they be players, managers, medical staff etc. and the best way to ensure we recruit the best people at the lower levels of the club is to ensure we recruit the best person at the upper level of the club as they can influence the entire way the Club functions

Matt Hunter
136 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:26:26
The Liverpool CEO spent 10 years as CEO of EA Sports after previously havinf roles with Microsoft, Sega and Reebok

The Chelsea CEO spent years as CEO of Vodafone.

What's Baxendale's previous again ?

Graham Mockford
137 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:27:08
Matt 129

Again like Jay you don’t understand the organisational model. Business and football are separated. She is responsible for one element, Benitez/ Brands for the other.

Yes anyone in a role should be qualified, I’m not arguing one way or the other if she’s doing a decent job, I just don’t have the information available to make that judgment.

But sorry to repeat myself she has absolutely zero influence what’s goes on on the pitch. Nil, none, nada

Matt Henderson
138 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:29:19
And Brands may (and should) report to the CEO but I suspect at Everton, which is part of the problem (i.e. the structure of the Club is broken), there is dotted line reporting to Bill and Moshri etc. etc. rather than just to the CEO.
Graham Mockford
139 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:29:54
Bill

You know this how?

Brent Stephens
140 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:31:34
Matt, in the examples you gave, what was their first experience of being a CEO?

If you could become a CEO only by having had previous experience as a CEO, then nobody would become a CEO.

DBB might or might not be a good CEO but her lack of previous experience as a CEO seems irrelevant.

Matt Henderson
141 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:35:58
Graham:
I don't think the CEO necessarily has to have the Manager reporting directly to them. Thy may report to the DoF who would then report to the CEO. What structure do you think there is at Everton? Does Marcel report to the Chairman and the CEO report to the Chairman on others? If so, this disconnect is part of the issue in my view.
Jay Harris
142 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:37:31
Graham,
I really don't understand your perspective on it.

I have served on the boards of 3 FTSE 150 companies and the CEO heads up the board. Theoretically Benitez reports to Brands and Brands reports to the board which she is supposed to lead. So to suggest she has nothing to do with football matters is the root of Everton's problems because obviously she feels the same.

Graham Mockford
143 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:44:11
Jay

To repeat you are applying your expertise of a CEO in the corporate world to the football model.

You are wrong the model divides football and the business of the football club. Its just the way it works. The only person who controls both is Moshiri

Graham Mockford
144 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:45:47
Matt

See my response to Jay, they are different streams of the club.

Dave Abrahams
145 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:53:31
I think a lot of Everton employees report to Kenwright when nobody is looking, it goes on a lot. It’s known as brown nosing.
Dale Self
146 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:55:13
I'm not of professional pedigree to know the square root of fuck all about corporate structure (I told you Kim) but it would seem that the CEO of a football enterprise not being involved in football matters suggests that the football is viewed as a cash cow for the other true interests of the board.

Which does seem wrong. Slam me if justified, I'm out on a limb there.

Tony Abrahams
147 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:56:11
Said it on another thread but wouldn’t it be nice to hear who’s fault it was besides the players. Is it the manager, the chairman or even the owner?

Just more speculation to try and work out from our D-O-F, because nothing seems straightforward at Everton anymore, on both sides of the club.

Matt Hunter
148 Posted 02/12/2021 at 19:59:26
Brent Stephens 140
let her get her experience some place else.
Joe McMahon
149 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:06:14
As said by someone else, I suspect we have 3 DOFs and Brands isn't tge main one.

Re CEO I agree with Matt, she can go get experience preferably not at a Premier League club.

Derek Moore
150 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:06:27
Transparency Tony, that's why it's important.

Too often, the absence of transparency is spuriously justified by the need to protect individuals from a so called "witch hunt".

Translated, covering up mistakes so we keep our cushy number.

Transparency isn't about scapegoating, it's about identifying where and why in the process the clubs strategy failed. And then, hopefully, correcting or changing the process so it ultimately succeeds.

Everton has the transparency of squid ink. We're presently sitting here speculating what the strategy might have been rather than working out what or how to fix it. When posters mention the need for a "cultural change", it's things like this they mean.

When we - individuals or organizations - admit failure, errors and mistakes, we can learn from it. Our clubs structure is not like that. Instead, at Everton failure is a time bomb that you try to pass to the next person as close to the time you think it'll explode as you dare.

Bill Gall
151 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:09:28
Graham
because I have sat on a couple of boards and reported to them. if you wish to see how normal boards are supposed to work, just google it. And note I said if this is a normal board.
Graham Mockford
152 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:12:30
Bill

I was a CEO for 10 years, I’m also a NED on a couple of boards.

I know how traditional corporate structures work. Football doesn’t follow that model. The business is separated into separate streams. Football and football business. I can’t say it anymore

Brent Stephens
153 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:21:59
Matt Hunter #148 "let her get her experience some place else."

Not happening.

John Hughes
154 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:27:11
Graham Mockford : I don’t wish to get in to a “mines bigger than yours” competition on corporate business experience but I have to say that you are absolutely correct regarding the football business model. You also hit the nail on the head: only Moshiri has the say on both streams, therefore the buck stops with him as far as I’m concerned.
Bill Gall
155 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:27:33
Matt # 135
The comment of male and female was nothing you wrote it was against the people who write up and say what does She know about Football.
I don't disagree with what you say I just questioned your comment of/ Benitez should report to the DOF, who should in my opinion, report to the CEO but likely does not., and wondered how you new that.
My own thoughts are this is happening between Benitez and Brands but never happened before with previous managers.
Brands was hired in May 2018 and in that time has worked with M.Silva. S.Allardyce, Ancelloti and now Benitez, that has made any sort of working relationship practically unworkable and that is how we have ended up like this with a manager who a lot of supporters,me including me,, and not because of his association with the reds but the style of play he is noted for, will most probably be kept on.
Bill Gall
156 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:37:56
Graham I am not debating your business acumen, and I have often quoted that Everton are more than just the football side of things, but they are set up as a normal board, with a Chairman who reports to an Owner and a number of directors who are responsible for various factions of the club who report to the CEO.
Tony Abrahams
157 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:38:24
Makes sense that post Derek M, they all know what the problem really is, but once it’s solved, it’ll probably be the end of most of them, so it’s better to keep quiet, stick together and hope another manager gets the blame.
Matt Hunter
158 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:40:41
DBB isn't qualified for the job that's the top and bottom of it. Compare her c.v with that of the c.v's of our supposed rivals. This is the problem with Everton for the past 20 + years we are supposed to just accept it. I'm absolutely sick of it! Sick of excuses, sick of hearing people defending people who should never ever be in the position they are in. Elstone wasn't qualified either and he lasted years as Everton stagnated.

It's all relevant to what you are competing against if we were competing with Port Vale and Bristol City (we might be soon) then it's fine but we aren't. We competing with the best teams in Europe and therefore Everton should have the absolute BEST available. The small minded little plucky Everton mindset has infected all aspects of the club, even the fans.

Graham Mockford
159 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:42:15
Bill

Sorry incorrect. The org structure is different to what you think. The footballing side does not report through the CEO.

If it did the CEO would appoint the manager. She didn’t

She is CEO of the football business. It’s really not that hard

Brent Stephens
160 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:46:24
Matt, my point (and your original point) wasn't that DBB wasn't sufficiently qualified to be a CEO but that she didn't have any previous CEO experience (we both agree on that). My point was merely that logically every CEO has to have their first CEO appointment - i.e. with no previous CEO experience. That's all I was responding to in your post. I have no idea how good a CEO she is.
Matt Hunter
161 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:53:04
Bret 160 Yes, Bret I also have no idea as to all the details of the performance. The point I want to make is I don't think based on previous experience she would get the job at any other Premier League expect maybe West Ham. That shows the overall mindset of the club which is still in Bill Kenwright's death grip.
Brent Stephens
162 Posted 02/12/2021 at 20:57:27
Matt, I wouldn't argue against that!
Graham Mockford
163 Posted 02/12/2021 at 21:01:20
Let’s just explore the nonsense of the view that in some way Benitez reporting line is through the CEO.

Benitez weekly salary £200k

Baxendales annual salary £160k

Do me a favour

Bill Gall
164 Posted 02/12/2021 at 21:21:47
Graham how do you now are you privy to someone on the board. for information.
Graham Mockford
165 Posted 02/12/2021 at 21:28:41
Bill

It’s all on the net mate

Jay Harris
166 Posted 02/12/2021 at 22:43:21
Graham,
I don't doubt your sincerity and belief but I have a totally different opinion.

People's salaries do not dictate the pecking order but my argument remains CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER means exactly that no matter which organisation you're looking at.

Nobody says she hires the manager or that they report directly to her but the CEO of a football club should have knowledge and experience of football and how it works and "should" be responsible for how the club performs overall and that includes on the pitch.

Look at other clubs and tell me their structure is not based on football first and foremost whereas Everton seems to be based on the community and Bill's clique..

Jay Harris
167 Posted 02/12/2021 at 22:45:00
Just to add to that comment does the fact that the players earn more than the manager and CEO make them senior to the CEO.
Simon Harrison
168 Posted 03/12/2021 at 02:12:57
OK, I'm not going to answer the points about what is wrong with the club, the team, the manage and the hierarchy etc; as that has been done to death above and in other threads and in the excellent Paul the Esk articles.

However, I'm dismayed at the lack of knowledge, the assumed knowledge of some here, and the lack of effort to merely type a search into an engine like Google. C'mon people, if we want to be the best educate yourselves! For with Knowledge comes progress, power comes much later.

Here is a very simple, but very informative article about how a football club should be structured and the roles within it:

Understanding football club hierarchy

Before I carry on, here are the accepted definitions for;

Football Chairman

The Chairperson's main duties include chairing meetings of the Board of Directors, setting meeting agendas in conjunction with the Company Secretary, managing and providing leadership to the Board of Directors, and acting as a direct liaison between the Board and the Company's management, through the Chief Executive.

Chief Executive Officer

1. To oversee the operations of the Club in a professional manner, ensuring that all objectives and targets as set by the Board of Directors are met. 2. To develop the Clubs brand and engagement levels with the local community, seeking always to maximise new and existing commercial revenue streams.

Just as a reminder, EFC have just three,yes count them, three Board members. Which is i) too small, and ii) has no Non-executives on the board to ask for accountability and governance for the owner.

Anyhoo, moving on.

So a football club's structure is defined as thus;

""An organisation’s structure is the manner in which its workforce is categorised into specific job roles and responsibilities are delegated. The structure of an organisation is to a great extent dependent on its goals and objectives. Most professional football clubs plying their trade across the globe are commercial entities looking to make profits.

In this regard, they mirror corporate organisations working in other industries. Just like a corporate setup, a football club also has at the top the Chairman and the Board of Directors. The Chairman may or may not be the owner of the club. Everton Football Club is owned by Iranian-British billionaire Farhad Moshiri but Bill Kenwright serves as the Chairman of the club. (Edited, SH)

The Chairman works in tandem with Board in making some of the crucial decisions regarding the functioning of the club like the appointment of a new manager, expansion of the stadium etc.

However, the most important role in a football club like a corporate house is that of the Chief Executive Officer. The CEO is the one who oversees the functioning of the organisation, communicating with people from various departments. In a football club, one of the chief activities of the CEO is negotiating contracts and signing new players.

Manchester United owes its glory not only to the great Sir Alex Ferguson but also David Gill who served as the Chief Executive Officer of the club for a period of thirteen years from 2000 to 2013. During his tenure, Gill worked closely with Sir Alex in signing new players and retaining some of the existing ones.

The importance and the role of the football manager is what differentiates football clubs from corporate houses. The manager is one of the most powerful and influential figures in the club. Rarely does a company have any employee lower than the CEO having such an influence over the running of the firm.

The manager of the football club is the one responsible for the results on the pitch. His work is to ensure that the targets given to him are met by the end of the season. He works closely with the CEO in trying to get new players to the club. And for a manager, two of the most important individuals are the Director of Football and the Head Scout.

The Director of Football acts as the link between the CEO and the Manager. (Maybe, or definitely, the manager has back channels to the owner? Edit, SH) An ex-player of the club usually occupies this position. (In some cases, when qualified and astute enough. Edit, SH) ––Current Previous Real Madrid Manager, Zinedine Zidane previously occupied this position at the club. The Head Scout is responsible for spotting new talent and bringing in new players to the existing squad.

The manager is closely assisted by the backroom staff comprising the Assistant Manager, the Goalkeeping Coach and the Physiotherapist or the Team Doctor to name a few.

The Medical Department plays an extremely crucial role. They work tirelessly with the players behind the scenes to produce the best results for the club on the pitch. Keeping the players fit over the course of the season guarantees success for the club and the employees in this department work to the best of their abilities to ensure a positive outcome.""

Hopefully, this will shed some light on how and why EFC are failing at the Executive level and above;

i) Bill is King, unless Farhad says otherwise

ii) DBB is overloaded with other job roles and priorities, away from being the CEO. Personally, I believe a Non-executive CEO is the way to go.

iii) DoF Marcel Brands seemingly has too many reporting channels, I.e. DBB and Farhad, plus input (Interference from Bill and Rafa) alongside, the perennial issue of all that goes on at USMFF and the Academy structure.

Regarding the Academy though, Brands seems to have started some changes there with telling Rhino to go 4-2-3-1 and also getting Chris Perkins as Academy Head of Recruitment from Derby. Which means every squad now plays 4-2-3-1 with a pass and press style.

John Zapa
169 Posted 03/12/2021 at 05:52:19
The Football is the ONLY business of the club. Everything else just stems and flows from the success or failure of what happens on the pitch. Sponsorship, merchandising, prize money, expanded stadium revenue doesn't just happen. It solely happens when there is a success on the field to justify it.

Its really nonsense to suggest that the CEO has no responsibility for what is happening on the field.

Graham Mockford
170 Posted 03/12/2021 at 09:28:46
There seem to be two arguments going on here.

The first one that the CEO is responsible for on field activity. All the evidence says she’s not. Read the annual reports, see who says what at annual meetings, see what’s reported. Cutting and pasting a generic Sportskeeda article which looks like it’s been written by a sixth former in a hurry doesn’t add much to the debate

Secondly she’s not up to the job. I have more sympathy for this point of view without any direct knowledge. The composition of the entire governance structure certainly pales in comparison of our competitors in terms of experience.

Matt Henderson
171 Posted 03/12/2021 at 11:01:52
Graham, I think you are likely correct that in our case our CEO is not in charge of football activities and I am not sure exactly what she is in charge of due to the lack of transparency and accountability at the Club. Our CEO seems more like a Director of an element of the club (which element I don't know) whilst others similarly perform disconnected activities across the piece with no one in charge of things overall (or is that meant to be Bill who seems unqualified in my opinion and as Chairman should not be performing such a role in any case).

The lack of a proper organisational structure, with someone across the whole piece (like a proper CEO), would be one of the main reasons our football department have spent money to such a degree that we have walked blindingly into the FFP issue - how could no one see that coming in previous years and taken action before it got to this? Someone should be responsible for the entire business (football and other) and ensuring the finances (and other activities) for the Club as a whole are adequately managed. Everton do not appear to have such a person and in my view that is the first thing that needs to change and we need to ensure that person is the best we can get as there is a lot to sort at Everton. If we get the off field structure correct we are far more likely to get things right on the field as we there would be a single plan in place to achieve success with everyone pulling in the same direction. Look how Man U and Arsenal suffered when Gill and Dein left, a good CEO is probably more important than a good Manager for the long term sustainability of the Club as a whole. The Club needs to attract and employ a proper CEO in the Gill and Dein mould to undertake what will be a very long term project to sort years of mismanagement. The owner should sort this immediately and give the new person the mandate to implement change at every level and not be held back by Bill.

Dave Abrahams
172 Posted 03/12/2021 at 11:29:43
Simon (168), no criticisms of your post, mostly because I don’t know how a boardroom should operate, although I know Everton’s isn’t working very well, if at all.

So my post is just to enlighten you that Chris Perkins came from Derby County about eighteen months ago and left last summer, he is now working for Spurs, don’t know why he left, I could hazard a quick guess that his face didn’t fit in with the clique, I think at Everton FC it’s who you know not what you know !!

Graham Mockford
173 Posted 03/12/2021 at 11:48:12
Matt

I think fundamentally the role of the CEO is different when you have a Director of Football. You are essentially splitting the role in two.

I suspect her role primarily is focussed on commercial activities, day to day administration and quite importantly the development of Bramley Moore

John Keating
174 Posted 03/12/2021 at 11:59:22
Does it really matter who does what and who answers to who?

The undoubted fact is that the Club is failing and has been failing since the Moores days.

The fact is that we have seen the Club stagnate with nothing to show, from the jobs for the boys squad at Finch Farm, and ALL the management, regardless of their titles.

The "business" is failing and the whole rotten bunch need binning.
Obviously the whole clear out can't happen overnight but Brands and Kenwright can go today as they contribute nothing. The rest over the course of the season and close season.

I'd bring back young Sarvar Ismailov and his brother in to run things.
Seems at least he has a bit of fight about him and he wouldn't be the only one hanging around the Club with a bit of a record!

Clive Rogers
175 Posted 03/12/2021 at 12:01:59
Matt, @171, our problems with FFP are not really because of overspending. That is a small part of it, but the main reason is because we made the biggest loss in our history of £128M. If we had made a profit, FFP wouldn’t have kicked in as I understand it.
Matt Henderson
176 Posted 03/12/2021 at 12:12:12
Clive, the reason we made losses are essentially because our costs were greater than our revenues. What should be happing with any effective business is that they annually set a forecast for the near term (next financial year) and mid term (possibly next five years). So, assuming this is happening at Everton (and if it isn't we have much bigger issues than I think), we have either spent much more than we forecast or made a lot less revenue than we forecast in order to make the sorts of losses that bring FFP into play. Now our revenue forecast would definitely have been impacted by Covid but as I understand it FFP was adjusted for Covid impacts. So we've either spent shed loads more than we forecast (who is managing the spending) or made less than we forecast (how? were we insanely forecasting to make the Champions League and generate revenues that way.

Part of the reason FFP is meant to be in place to protect Clubs from sending themselves bankrupt i.e. the authorities think you have mismanaged the finances of your Club so badly, making such large losses, that you might be in danger of sending yourselves bankrupt and that the authorities need to enforce a drastic no spend rule so that the Club survives. That is how badly the Club has been managed.

Bill Gall
177 Posted 03/12/2021 at 15:08:23
Can some one explain why the owners of Man City never bought Everton? Most comments say that Kenwright blocked the sale as he would not have control.

It is my understanding that, to be the owner of Everton, you have to be the majority shareholder. Kenwright became the owner after purchasing the shares of Peter Johnston, that gave him 26% of the shares along with Robert Earl with 24% and Woods with 19% – a total of 69 %. That left a total of 31% of shares elsewhere.

When Moshiri became owner, he bought shares from Woods, Earl, all but 5% of Knwright's shares; he also bought shares from Abercrombie and the bulk of Lord Granchester's shares.

That made him owner of Everton with 77% of the shares. So, as shares are available, why didn't Shiek Mansours advisors just buy shares from other people and leave Kenwright as a minor shareholder?

Clive Rogers
178 Posted 03/12/2021 at 15:17:28
Bill, not sure how it works, but when a company is bought, the purchasers go through the chairman who then recommends to the board or not.

Reportedly, when Kenwright found out Sheikh Mansour wouldn't let him continue as chairman, he refused to speak further with them.

Bill Gall
179 Posted 03/12/2021 at 15:46:29
Clive,
Shares in Everton FC Co Ltd. They are privately traded normally through the club's brokers, Blankstone Sington.
Jay Harris
180 Posted 03/12/2021 at 15:56:51
Bill,

Keith Harris said at the time, the conditions of Everton for sale were discouraging a sale.

Specifically, Kenwright wanted an investor who would agree to leave him in charge and of course the Arabs would not entertain that idea.

Along comes Moshiri, desperate to get control of a football club, as a stalking horse for Usmanov, and finds someone "willing" to run the club while he stays in Monaco.

Hence the club gets screwed by Kenwright yet again.

Bill Gall
181 Posted 03/12/2021 at 18:55:58
Jay

I am not trying to defend Kenwright in any way as my belief is the club started deteriorating when he became owner with 27% of shares and that left 73 % of shares in other people's hands.

My question was why didn't the Arabs buy Everton as I don't believe that whoever was representing them, if they wanted to buy Everton, they only needed 30% of the shares to become owners. With £20billion to spend, I believe buying that amount of shares would have just been a drop in the bucket to them, and I don't see that one man could stop them with the amount of shares he had.

Remember when Moshiri bought Everton, he bought the shares from Woods and Earl that gave him 43% of the shares, and that made him the majority shareholder and owner.

Brian Murray
182 Posted 03/12/2021 at 19:07:23
Bill. It's clear as day and no big secret that the Arabs or whoever took an interest were told he will not be moved from his train set.

The Fat Controller needs ousting this week, as soon as this idiot Iranian jets in.

Bill Gall
183 Posted 03/12/2021 at 19:38:08
Brian,

You do understand that to become the owner of Everton, you have to be the majority shareholder. And do you believe with the money they would have offered, that the Earl of Sandwiches and Woods would have received a large profit if they sold their shares to them but they would not do it.

As I say, there is no way that I will defend Kenwright but people are always saying that it was his fault that they never bought Everton – I don't believe it. I think the turning point was they had a new ground to go to.

Brian Murray
184 Posted 03/12/2021 at 19:51:05
Bill,

I take your point but it doesn't alter the fact he somehow has it carved in stone that he had to remain as chairman. Job for life. He has form for that trait.

Ebbrell, Unsworth, Barrett-Baxendale, big Dunc, Jeffers, soon to be Coleman probably... and Baines only has to pick up a phone. All have his dabs all over them contracts. Fact. As the waiter once said.

Bill Gall
185 Posted 03/12/2021 at 21:07:53
Brian,

I take your point in what you believe, but in business, money talks, and the more money you have, the louder you talk. I don't believe a Millionaire will dictate to a Billionaire terms of sale that he can't control.

That means, although being the owner due to having the majority of shares, anyone who buys more shares than him can become the new owner and can keep whoever he wants, including the board, or he can replace them.

Brendan McLaughlin
186 Posted 04/12/2021 at 01:25:25
Bill Gall (#various),

I'm gonna have to report you to the moderators... you're talking with rationale and logic about a subject (share trading) that you obviously know something about.

Just stick to making stuff up!

Joe Bibb
187 Posted 04/12/2021 at 11:47:28
How about a midfield with Kenwright, Barrett-Baxendale, Brands & Benitez they all seem to be able to pass the buck – maybe they can pass the ball.

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