Prentice takes communications role at Everton

Sunday, 23 January, 2022 20comments  |  Jump to last
David Prentice will join the club he has covered as a journalist for the past 35 years in an official capacity next month when becomes Senior Communications Manager at Everton.

Prentice spent years as a football correspondent for the Liverpool Echo and Daily Post before being promoted to head of sport media when the company was known as Trinity Mirror.

Prentice, who is married to the grand-daughter of Goodison legend Dixie Dean and who published a memoir of his time covering the Blues, will depart his current role in the higher echelons of what is now called Reach PLC to move into Everton's comms department.  

Reader Comments (20)

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Jack Convery
1 Posted 24/01/2022 at 01:35:40
Good luck to him. He'll need it. I look forward to his book - My time on the Inside.
Kieran Kinsella
2 Posted 24/01/2022 at 02:10:57
How’s this news? He’s been Bill Kenwrights Lord Haw Haw for the last 20 years
Derek Moore
3 Posted 24/01/2022 at 02:27:47
Who will the club use to plant stories in the Red Echo now though?

Oh, of course, silly me – all of Dave's now former colleagues will oblige.

Probably a smart move taking a job like this one. Being a journalist these days is akin to being a farrier after Henry Ford brought out the Model T.

Barry Hesketh
4 Posted 24/01/2022 at 12:15:24
It appears that Moshiri hasn't got Dave Prentice on speed-dial yet or Dave hasn't got Moshiri's number, as Jim White has declared that in a conversation with the Iranian this morning, he was told that Farhad wants to speak directly to the fans, “I would say, just moments ago, Moshiri has just said to me there, we are now going down the route of direct communication with the fans, I think that’s good"

Danny O’Neill
5 Posted 24/01/2022 at 12:46:52
I know opinions can be divided on Prentice, but like him or not, he rarely gossips or speculates and articulates himself very well.

He is also seemingly well informed.

When he publishes something on the BBC, I take note.

Martin Reppion
6 Posted 24/01/2022 at 15:31:52
His book is a brilliant read. A true blue with a real depth of knowledge about the game in general and Everton in particular.
He has always been prepared to give the club the benefit of whatever doubt there is. But when there is no doubt, he calls a spade a spade and tells it as it is. Even when that means upsetting people within the club. I include the fans in that.
Putting positive spin on some of the recent activity may take an even greater wordsmith than Mr Prentice. But I think this is a good move which should help keep those of us who watch on from the outside, better informed.
Colin Glassar
7 Posted 24/01/2022 at 15:35:10
Prenno is a good lad and a devoted Evertonian. I just hope he manages to maintain his integrity.
Peter Mills
8 Posted 24/01/2022 at 15:48:27
I see this as a good appointment. Dave Prentice is an excellent writer, eloquent, a nice guy and steeped in Everton. I’ve had a chat with him a couple of times, he is very amiable.

We have been asking the club to knock square pegs into square holes, this feels like they have done so.

Mike Gaynes
9 Posted 24/01/2022 at 16:12:37
Martin #6, could not agree more. I am standing and cheering the appointment of a true journalist -- not a PR flack -- who understands the importance and process of communicating the truth to the fan base. This is a club that has no idea how to talk to its fans. Never has. Now, after all these years of incompetence, they have hired a guy who knows how to do it, has been doing it all his life. And he's a true Blue.

Yes, he likes Bill Kenwright. Yes, he likes Farhad Moshiri. Those are not disqualifiers. He wouldn't have been hired for this job if he didn't.

Prentice has an insight into people and knows how to elicit information. This is an account (from his book) of his first conversation with Moshiri, who is talking about the establishment of his relationship with Kenwright and his choice to invest in Everton:

"Meeting Bill, and especially in his office, was what had the greatest impression on me. That was a real man, totally obsessed in whatever he's doing. I saw all the photographs of the musicals, the movie productions and the great moments of Everton. His enthusiasm for Everton was infectious.

"You couldn't find anything negative, his heart was Everton and I just found him a guy very much in my own mould in being driven and committed to what he liked.

"He talked about the history, values and heritage of Everton. We kept on meeting each other and we became friends, he met my family, we got to know each other, and after a while there was no real other option -- it was Everton."

That's important information that, to my knowledge, no other journo has brought forward. Moshiri REALLY likes and admires Kenwright. That's why he has trusted him to help him with major decisions -- not always taking his counsel (e.g. Benitez) but listening to him. That's why he hasn't taken the action so many here would like and pushed Bill out of the club.

The book was published in 2020, a year before Benitez, but it sure does lend some clarity to the current situation. And I think a guy like Prentice will bring a great deal of very welcome clarity to a murky situation.

Well done, Everton. Bravo. And about effing time.

Dave Abrahams
10 Posted 24/01/2022 at 16:17:28
Peter (8), yes I will second that, a genuine man, a good supporter, I’d even say he sees Everton through Royal Blue Glasses which I argued with him about, on many telephone conversations.

I used to ask him now and again why he stayed with The Echo when quite a few of his comrades had moved on to bigger and better( well nearly every paper is better than the Echo) jobs, I think he was happy and content there, I don’t think the job is the same as a reporter, not breaking news, just putting a positive spin on Everton news and Everton have been doing that as long as I can remember, take it with a large pinch of salt. I hope the job is well paid with a good pension pot for Dave’s sake, best of luck Dave, he knew me as the fella who rang up and asked him “ Have you got a couple of minutes to spare Dave” most times he had.

Mike Gaynes
11 Posted 24/01/2022 at 16:33:26
Dave, he should have been asking YOU that!
Brian Harrison
12 Posted 24/01/2022 at 16:44:54
I always read what Dave Prentice says and listen to his podcast that he does with the other Echo reporters. I think Dave lives in Formby and understands the Evertonians being one himself.

The problem being the communications director at Everton is it's a very precarious job, and I guess whatever he would want to communicate to fans will have to be rubber-stamped by those in power. As Alan Myers found when he had this same job, it's fraught with danger.

I see Moshiri has informed Jim White he will be communicating with the Everton fans now so he has told Jim "Don't expect any tweets from me for a while."

Be interesting to see how long that lasts, and even more worrying for Dave as to how long he will stay in the job, given how poor Everton are at communicating with their own fans.

John Raftery
13 Posted 24/01/2022 at 17:29:01
I assume Prentice will be reporting to the Director of Communications, Richard Kenyon. It seems to me the job must be about far more than issuing tweets and press releases. It is high time somebody in the club took strategic responsibility for driving and communicating a collaborative Board/Owner position on all the major issues affecting the club.

The stuff we read about chaos and confusion behind the scenes, about for example the Chairman and Owner holding differing views on the appointment of previous managers, undermines the club’s standing in the eyes of its own employees, sponsors, supporters and external audiences. It also creates a climate for protest.

Once the new team manager has been appointed he ought to be guaranteed the full, unambiguous public backing of everybody at senior level within the club. Bill Kenwright’s notable silence following Benitez’s appointment left the manager isolated at a time when he needed the maximum support from the club’s hierarchy.

I hope Prentice is able to make a success of his new position.

John Keating
14 Posted 24/01/2022 at 18:38:54
Appreciate Prentice has some support amongst Evertonians
A Blue himself, association to Dixie etc
However to me he’s just another lackey to the Club and Kenwright

I’ll not forget the absolute zero support or even questioning the DK fiasco.
The Echo and Everton correspondents just towed the Club line.
They were looking after their own interests, access to the Club and hospitality

I seem to remember the Echo was banned for a short, very short, period for not fully supporting the Club. As soon as they got back in line, back on the large GT’s

Sorry, for me a direct job with the Club is just a continuation of the job he had at the Echo

Dave Abrahams
15 Posted 25/01/2022 at 16:26:01
John R (13) John I like Dave Prentice, take as you find, is the way I look at life but I think John K (14) sees the situation much the same as I think will happen, Dave Prentice is there in a new job, probably made up to be working for Everton, but he will not create any waves same as Graeme Sharp in the boardroom, they will sit and listen but not draw any attention to any misdemeanours that comes their way, they have a nice cushy job why would they upset anyone who gave them that position? That’s life,most people like it to be nice and easy, I got black listed for trying to make conditions and wages a bit better and never got another job with that firm again simply because I took the deputy stewards position on a couple of jobs on different building sites.
Danny O’Neill
16 Posted 25/01/2022 at 16:42:54
I'm hopeful (again, I know) that maybe his time away from the Echo and being on the national stage means that he is now too big a name with a reputation to hold.

I appreciate he needs to convey the message of his new employer, but perhaps his standing in the game and reputation will give him enough clout to actually advise. He's actually been pretty critical about Everton over the past couple of years.

I can't see how he takes on the job unless it's convenient and closer to home.

Jay Wood

17 Posted 25/01/2022 at 16:47:19
I have some sympathy for David Prentice taking up this post, particularly at this time.

Two senior well-balanced posters I respect in Peter Mills and Dave Abrahams speak well of him in their personal dealings with him.

Then you have the two Johns (Keating and Raftery) taking a more questioning view.

David Prentice in taking this post has now lost his independence as a journalist, able to write and speak with openness and honesty.

He is now open to the charge, already used, that he is just another club lackey mouthing the Newspeak the club wants the public to believe.

This has probably been in the pipeline and negotiated over some time. But because it has been announced now, it could be interpreted as a poor prioritizing by the club given all the other problems we have to resolve.

So good luck David. I fancy you are going to need it.

Brian Murray
18 Posted 25/01/2022 at 17:56:40
I met Prentice in town once. I was wanting a minute of his time but he ran a mile when the subject of the chairman was raised by me. Won't hold that against him but I doubt he's here to make waves. Ditto Sharp.
Paul Columb
19 Posted 25/01/2022 at 18:04:55
Glad to see some positivity on here regarding Dave Prentice's appointment.

I respect the balancing act that has been necessary throughout his time reporting on all things Everton as the reality is that access is required to gain insight and that door can slam shut very quickly if you lack diplomacy.

I understand supporters' frustration at an apparent lack of deep investigative journalism during testing times (Destination Kirkby comes to mind) but I think Mr Prentice has walked a fine line wisely in an era where access has become so limited and commentary too scripted.

His book is a fantastic read and I've enjoyed his candid but balanced commentary with Gav Buckland, Adam and Sam on the Royal Blue Podcast. He's not been shy to be forthcoming with his opinion.

What we need to appreciate is that, in his new role, he is no longer a journalist from whom we can expect probing enquiry but rather a club representative responsible for helping improve communication with the supporters and the football community at large.

I can't think of a better candidate; a man of seeming integrity who is Blue to the bone and who will very likely seek to change things for the better in whatever way he can find influence on the inside.

Best of luck to him. A positive move from the club. COYB.

Stephen Leddy
20 Posted 28/01/2022 at 19:09:18
Good luck in your new position.

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