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August 15, 2013, 12:04:03 AM
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.Rimbo.


So...the delirium of Martinez's flurry of signings has now settled and we can assess what we make of his workings so far.

It seemed Evertonians were just happy to see some signings in early doors regardless of who they were. It was abundantly clear the new man was trying to recruit players that he knew behind the scenes, hence he brought the three lads who he had managed before. We need to ask ourselves what our reaction would've been had Moyes made those signings.

As frequent readers of this site may be aware, I was not the biggest fan of Moyes but I feel his transfers where always met with a different yardstick than Martinez's. Alcaraz and Roubles would've garnered a lukewarm reaction, I'd imagine from most of the fanbase, and Deulofeo would've excited us given his supposed prodigious talent and Barcelona stamped on his CV.

I just cannot get groovy with this Arouna Kone signing. I first saw him turn out for Ivory Coast in the 2006 World Cup and, admittedly, he looked a talent. However, seven years on, that's a big amount to pay for a 29-year-old and a burden to bestow upon his shoulders. It is clearly not a signing that the masses are used to from Everton, given it's not in alignment with Moyes' transfer policy to buy older players, with little resale value, for hard cash.

What does impress me, mind, is how Martinez is identifying areas of the squad that need improvement. Alcaraz and Roubles provide both cover and competition for next to nothing. Deulofeo, in terms of upfront fee, cost nothing, will invigorate the midfield/wings and provide genuine creativity and could prove to be a match-winner if he settles. Kone provides competition upfront for Nikica Jelavic and Victor Anichebe.

All of a sudden, in one fell three-day swoop of the transfer market, provided there are few or no departures, the squad looks considerably healthier. We have genuine options up front and on the wings and competition in a much-needed area; the defence.

Two of Everton's prominent problems in the last few years of the Moyes regime were the leaky, weak, clumsy defence and the inability to break teams down. Clean sheets were antiques from a by-gone era inherent in the make-up of post-Lescott Everton (how many times did we see teams counter attack and one of Distin/Heitinga/Jagielka/Hibbert/Neville/Howard make some daft mistake and give away a goal?). Howard started to become a hindrance and Moyes struggled to strike a balance between the centre-backs to make Everton intimidating again.

In a stretch from December 2007 and April 2009, even when we struggled to retain the ball, Everton looked definitively solid. Jagielka was drafted in to cover as Yobo was due to be on ACON duty and, after two back-to-back impressive displays at Upton Park, they never looked back. If Lescott and Jagielka did concede it was almost a shock. Lescott leaving was the start of the fall of Moyes' empire.

At home against lesser teams the other problem of the toothless attack arose. Match-after-match we'd either enjoy the lionshare of possession but struggle to convert it into a chance/goal or we would score, but only one, and would be pegged back because of the aforementioned problem.

We only took 29 points from a possible 42 against non-top 4 opposition at Goodison last year. Against Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal we took 7 points from 12 at Goodison and only Chelsea beat us.

We cannot possibly say that Martinez has identified the areas of the squad that need to be improved. Results considerably improved when Donovan provided his services, meaning we had the natural pace and width to open teams up at home and stretch them. The defence and goalkeeper position will be under more scrutiny than in previous years and we have options at the other end of the pitch as well.

Martinez impresses me with his all-around demeanour and talk in the interviews I've seen. In one particular interview, I believe in the United States, he alludes to the different systems and styles of play he may need to adapt dependent on who we are facing. This excites me. Under Moyes, I was under the impression his system was his system and seldom did he change it.

Whether it was Beattie, AJ, Yakubu, Beckford, Saha, Jo...the strikers were pretty much deployed in the same way, in terms of hurrying the defenders, running the channels and anticipating the knock-ons from Cahill/Fellaini. Obviously, each striker offered different attributes to the role but that wasn't Beattie's game, it wasn't Saha's game and it wasn't Jelavic's game.

Moyes asking the midfield to harass and win the second balls and his all-around percentage football were endemic to the whole regime and, in my opinion, was one of the reasons Everton hit a glass ceiling under his tenure. Obviously, we also need to look at the heavy external investment in other clubs in contrast to Everton's finances but that would be for another discussion.

It is my firm and deep-rooted belief that Moyes performed excellently in the first 7 years of his role but struggled after that. Even after the fall-out of Lescott, Moyes still had the squad to finish fourth. He built a squad capable of finishing in the Champions League but it was he himself who held Everton back in the final few seasons.

His strength was finding bargains in the transer market and even though there were a few poor signings in there, my main gripe was that he never identified the areas of the squad that needed immediate attention. As I've mentioned in another thread, one summer he went after Moutinho, failed, and then went for Fellaini (even though they are two vastly different players). Or how he went for Leroy Fer in January, but then when he missed out he decided to part with some of his money for John Stones instead (who became the fourth out-and-out right back at the club). Sometimes it seemed he was just on the lookout for good players as opposed to what Everton needed at the time.

This is where I feel Martinez differs, for better or worse. The proof will be in the pudding. I expect a slow start to Martinez's tenure. I don't think the defence will be as titanic as the Lescott-Jagielka union of 2007-09 but an improvement on the last few seasons would be highly appreciated. Hopefully Martinez can identify what makes Jelavic tick in terms of style-of-play and service and get the best out of him to revive his Everton career (whether that be playing with support of Kone or as the lone wolf again). I'll make a prediction Everton will finish 7th again next year, but then hopefully we'll start to see steady improvement as the squad settles in the next few years.

As an aside, I don't know if this was scheduled while Moyes was at the club or not but it's a refreshing change to see Everton play good teams in pre-season (Real Madrid and Juventus) as opposed to farmers (Melbourne Heart, Perth Glory etc.)

*Disclaimer: Moyes probably would have been more proactive in the market this year with the new TV deal money but who can say for sure?


deCoubertin

August 15, 2013, 12:35:37 AM
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The Analog Kid


Long post Rimbo.

I'll leave reading that till bedtime.

August 15, 2013, 01:45:12 AM
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MmmBlueRamirez


Long post Rimbo.


That's what all the girls call him.
Farming Karma like the Dalai Llama


August 15, 2013, 02:38:22 AM
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Fern


I feel this is overly critical of Moyes, how can people keep ranting on about his lack of effectiveness when every club strengthened each year, while he had little to go by? Not saying he didnt have faults but these are faults within reason, surely? This is my opinion. I personally don't think even Mourinho could have done any better with the resources we've had.

Personally, I dont think Martinez will maintain the steal, or defensive strength we've had under Moyes and it is that guile that suits a squad like ours. I have big doubts about him.

August 15, 2013, 03:20:19 AM
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.Rimbo.


I feel this is overly critical of Moyes, how can people keep ranting on about his lack of effectiveness when every club strengthened each year, while he had little to go by? Not saying he didnt have faults but these are faults within reason, surely? This is my opinion. I personally don't think even Mourinho could have done any better with the resources we've had.

Personally, I dont think Martinez will maintain the steal, or defensive strength we've had under Moyes and it is that guile that suits a squad like ours. I have big doubts about him.

I tried to focus mainly on Martinez but did tangent on to Moyes. My main issue wasn't the financial situation etc., for me it's always so overplayed. He acquired good players at a good price. However, he had the squad last year to do much better, for instance. Off the very top of my head, three games stand out massively. Spurs away (granted, we weren't expected to win); winning 2-1, concede in last five minutes, drop two points. Norwich at home; concede last minute as we were only one up. Drop two points. Norwich away; 1-0 up, ten minutes to go. Try to hold on. Concede two. Drop three points. That was seven points in total.

I don't know if Martinez is the real deal but he seems to have the right approach for the post-Moyes Everton. He wasn't my first choice as manager and I was actually against his appointment. Defensively, we will be weaker as opposed to attack. However, we cannot say Moyes' Everton was solid defensively, especially in it's later years. We had eleven clean sheets last year in the league. Conceded more than one on twelve occasions. That doesn't include the disastrous cup performances (conceded two against Leeds and three against Wigan at home).

August 15, 2013, 03:21:20 AM
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Eddie

NSNO Subscriber
Long post Rimbo.

I'll leave reading that till bedtime.

Post us a bite size summary of Rimbos assessment please mate... :thumbsup:
I'll assume you have been drinking... I live in Monterrey Mexico numb nuts


August 15, 2013, 04:31:42 AM
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charlatan


Post Rimbo laaaaaaaa

August 15, 2013, 05:10:08 AM
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toffee_scot


Overall I am feeling cautiously optimistic about what Martinez has done so far.

In terms of signings, he's done well to identify and bring in players early that can add strength in depth and compete with the rest of the first team. Ideally he should also be bringing in a central midfielder as we are very light there and indeed I cannot help but feel underwhelmed by the fact we used a significant portion of our transfer budget on Kone.

Pre-season seemed to have turned out well, a few decent results with a mixture of good and bad performances but we should be prepared enough for the start of the season. The positives include Jelavic finding his goalscoring form, Naismith playing quite well against some of the best teams in Europe and the development of Stones and Barkley in to reliable first team players. The negatives include not being able to keep a clean sheet in any of our 7 games, Kone failing to make a presence plus one or two players may need a bit more time to adjust to a more passing style of football.

A new manager, coaches and training/playing system seem to have freshened things up a bit and has reinforced a positive vibe around the place. I predict we will finish fairly comfortably inside the top 10 but lets hope a lot of the hard work that Moyes had put in to solidify the club won't be undone and risk us falling down the table.

August 15, 2013, 06:38:14 AM
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Fern


Overall I am feeling cautiously optimistic about what Martinez has done so far.

In terms of signings, he's done well to identify and bring in players early that can add strength in depth and compete with the rest of the first team. Ideally he should also be bringing in a central midfielder as we are very light there and indeed I cannot help but feel underwhelmed by the fact we used a significant portion of our transfer budget on Kone.

Pre-season seemed to have turned out well, a few decent results with a mixture of good and bad performances but we should be prepared enough for the start of the season. The positives include Jelavic finding his goalscoring form, Naismith playing quite well against some of the best teams in Europe and the development of Stones and Barkley in to reliable first team players. The negatives include not being able to keep a clean sheet in any of our 7 games, Kone failing to make a presence plus one or two players may need a bit more time to adjust to a more passing style of football.

A new manager, coaches and training/playing system seem to have freshened things up a bit and has reinforced a positive vibe around the place. I predict we will finish fairly comfortably inside the top 10 but lets hope a lot of the hard work that Moyes had put in to solidify the club won't be undone and risk us falling down the table.

Good points there. But really, what has he done so far that's not expected of him? identifying players for the positions that's required for a team isn't exactly rocket science, in my opinion. I personally don't think Kone was a good signing, at all. If Moyes had bought him you all would be up in arms! He has more cash at his disposal than Moyes did when he started, maybe (i'm sure i'll be corrected on that). I just think people are getting carried away as, remember, if the cash thing is not so much of an issue as people say, he got a club relegated and has been of the cuff of relegation for a number of years. If they had lost to City that day, would most of you be happy that he's here? Im not sure.

I think we a bit blinded by this pretty or attacking football notion because, really, winning is all that really matters. Or it should be!

I disliked his 'It's Wigan time' phrase when it came to them scrapping against relegation and we expect him to be pushing Arsenal or Spurs. I just can't see him pressuring the top 5 come Xmas but, especially when people keep spouting on about a "year of transition"... He'll be lucky because a top 5 club wouldn't stand for that excuse. The mood may change a lot about him if we lose Sat anyway, as fickle as supporters can be.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 06:39:46 AM by Fern »

August 15, 2013, 06:46:56 AM
Reply #9
Online

Bluedylan


I think there will be quite a few teething problems, and a lot of unrest on here, but the long term future is in excellent hands and by the time he leaves, whenever that is, we'll have one of the best youth setups in Europe.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 06:47:14 AM by Bluedylan »
Jeff: That's not the way to win.
Kathie: Is there a way to win?
Jeff: There's a way to lose more slowly.

August 15, 2013, 12:37:28 PM
Reply #10
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van der Meyde


I see where you're coming from about the whole "identifying a position and a player to play there " thing, but I'm not sure how common that practice is in football, to be honest. I remember reading a quote a couple of years ago - it may have been Sam Allardyce (don't laugh!) - which basically said: "even if what you're really after is a striker, if a player of genuine quality is available at an affordable price then you should take it."

I don't think you can really turn down good players, even if they don't quite fit what you want - for example, the Moutinho and Fellaini comparison you make. Similarly for Fer and Stones, sure everyone knows that we could do with a midfielder, but if there's no one of the required quality available, I'd much rather the money was used and actually spent rather than sitting there unused and potentially being unavailable in the next window.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 03:18:02 PM by van der Meyde »
...

August 15, 2013, 04:33:29 PM
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Les Trebilcock


 I've watched enough of the pre-season games and I reckon the minus' outweigh the plus'. For me, our play in the last third (attacking) of the pitch, developing enough goal scoring moves from midfield into attack, has been very poor. In a nutshell I agree with this quote from Mark Lawrenson...

Under Moyes, Everton were an incredibly difficult team to play against, always organised and stingy in defence. In the Premier League, you want to be difficult to beat. Thatís what Everton did under Moyes, and by hook or by crook they would often get results.

 Martinezís Wigan, though, could be very impressive for half an hour in a match but then be undone by individual mistakes and sloppy defending and lose. Thatís ultimately why they went down.


 http://www.dailypost.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/mark-lawrenson-the-difference-between-5731397


 
You can take that to the bank.

August 15, 2013, 04:43:32 PM
Reply #12
Online

pjk


So...the delirium of Martinez's flurry of signings has now settled and we can assess what we make of his workings so far.

It seemed Evertonians were just happy to see some signings in early doors regardless of who they were. It was abundantly clear the new man was trying to recruit players that he knew behind the scenes, hence he brought the three lads who he had managed before. We need to ask ourselves what our reaction would've been had Moyes made those signings.

As frequent readers of this site may be aware, I was not the biggest fan of Moyes but I feel his transfers where always met with a different yardstick than Martinez's. Alcaraz and Roubles would've garnered a lukewarm reaction, I'd imagine from most of the fanbase, and Deulofeo would've excited us given his supposed prodigious talent and Barcelona stamped on his CV.

I just cannot get groovy with this Arouna Kone signing. I first saw him turn out for Ivory Coast in the 2006 World Cup and, admittedly, he looked a talent. However, seven years on, that's a big amount to pay for a 29-year-old and a burden to bestow upon his shoulders. It is clearly not a signing that the masses are used to from Everton, given it's not in alignment with Moyes' transfer policy to buy older players, with little resale value, for hard cash.

What does impress me, mind, is how Martinez is identifying areas of the squad that need improvement. Alcaraz and Roubles provide both cover and competition for next to nothing. Deulofeo, in terms of upfront fee, cost nothing, will invigorate the midfield/wings and provide genuine creativity and could prove to be a match-winner if he settles. Kone provides competition upfront for Nikica Jelavic and Victor Anichebe.

All of a sudden, in one fell three-day swoop of the transfer market, provided there are few or no departures, the squad looks considerably healthier. We have genuine options up front and on the wings and competition in a much-needed area; the defence.

Two of Everton's prominent problems in the last few years of the Moyes regime were the leaky, weak, clumsy defence and the inability to break teams down. Clean sheets were antiques from a by-gone era inherent in the make-up of post-Lescott Everton (how many times did we see teams counter attack and one of Distin/Heitinga/Jagielka/Hibbert/Neville/Howard make some daft mistake and give away a goal?). Howard started to become a hindrance and Moyes struggled to strike a balance between the centre-backs to make Everton intimidating again.

In a stretch from December 2007 and April 2009, even when we struggled to retain the ball, Everton looked definitively solid. Jagielka was drafted in to cover as Yobo was due to be on ACON duty and, after two back-to-back impressive displays at Upton Park, they never looked back. If Lescott and Jagielka did concede it was almost a shock. Lescott leaving was the start of the fall of Moyes' empire.

At home against lesser teams the other problem of the toothless attack arose. Match-after-match we'd either enjoy the lionshare of possession but struggle to convert it into a chance/goal or we would score, but only one, and would be pegged back because of the aforementioned problem.

We only took 29 points from a possible 42 against non-top 4 opposition at Goodison last year. Against Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal we took 7 points from 12 at Goodison and only Chelsea beat us.

We cannot possibly say that Martinez has identified the areas of the squad that need to be improved. Results considerably improved when Donovan provided his services, meaning we had the natural pace and width to open teams up at home and stretch them. The defence and goalkeeper position will be under more scrutiny than in previous years and we have options at the other end of the pitch as well.

Martinez impresses me with his all-around demeanour and talk in the interviews I've seen. In one particular interview, I believe in the United States, he alludes to the different systems and styles of play he may need to adapt dependent on who we are facing. This excites me. Under Moyes, I was under the impression his system was his system and seldom did he change it.

Whether it was Beattie, AJ, Yakubu, Beckford, Saha, Jo...the strikers were pretty much deployed in the same way, in terms of hurrying the defenders, running the channels and anticipating the knock-ons from Cahill/Fellaini. Obviously, each striker offered different attributes to the role but that wasn't Beattie's game, it wasn't Saha's game and it wasn't Jelavic's game.

Moyes asking the midfield to harass and win the second balls and his all-around percentage football were endemic to the whole regime and, in my opinion, was one of the reasons Everton hit a glass ceiling under his tenure. Obviously, we also need to look at the heavy external investment in other clubs in contrast to Everton's finances but that would be for another discussion.

It is my firm and deep-rooted belief that Moyes performed excellently in the first 7 years of his role but struggled after that. Even after the fall-out of Lescott, Moyes still had the squad to finish fourth. He built a squad capable of finishing in the Champions League but it was he himself who held Everton back in the final few seasons.

His strength was finding bargains in the transer market and even though there were a few poor signings in there, my main gripe was that he never identified the areas of the squad that needed immediate attention. As I've mentioned in another thread, one summer he went after Moutinho, failed, and then went for Fellaini (even though they are two vastly different players). Or how he went for Leroy Fer in January, but then when he missed out he decided to part with some of his money for John Stones instead (who became the fourth out-and-out right back at the club). Sometimes it seemed he was just on the lookout for good players as opposed to what Everton needed at the time.

This is where I feel Martinez differs, for better or worse. The proof will be in the pudding. I expect a slow start to Martinez's tenure. I don't think the defence will be as titanic as the Lescott-Jagielka union of 2007-09 but an improvement on the last few seasons would be highly appreciated. Hopefully Martinez can identify what makes Jelavic tick in terms of style-of-play and service and get the best out of him to revive his Everton career (whether that be playing with support of Kone or as the lone wolf again). I'll make a prediction Everton will finish 7th again next year, but then hopefully we'll start to see steady improvement as the squad settles in the next few years.

As an aside, I don't know if this was scheduled while Moyes was at the club or not but it's a refreshing change to see Everton play good teams in pre-season (Real Madrid and Juventus) as opposed to farmers (Melbourne Heart, Perth Glory etc.)

*Disclaimer: Moyes probably would have been more proactive in the market this year with the new TV deal money but who can say for sure?





Quality post this mate. :thumbsup:
Steinbeck's maxim: ďSocialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.Ē.

August 15, 2013, 07:05:54 PM
Reply #13
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Fern


I've watched enough of the pre-season games and I reckon the minus' outweigh the plus'. For me, our play in the last third (attacking) of the pitch, developing enough goal scoring moves from midfield into attack, has been very poor. In a nutshell I agree with this quote from Mark Lawrenson...

Under Moyes, Everton were an incredibly difficult team to play against, always organised and stingy in defence. In the Premier League, you want to be difficult to beat. Thatís what Everton did under Moyes, and by hook or by crook they would often get results.

 Martinezís Wigan, though, could be very impressive for half an hour in a match but then be undone by individual mistakes and sloppy defending and lose. Thatís ultimately why they went down.


 http://www.dailypost.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/mark-lawrenson-the-difference-between-5731397


 

Exactly, but there seems to be too much expectancy that he'll get results with that style and I'm telling you that isn't the case.
Sod playing attractive football with lesser players with ability, that becomes a liability. People raved on about how Wigan played but where did it get them? Then people will say 'but we have better players than Wigan' but we've been rumoured to take half their players! I hope he doesn't turn us into an attractive playing but weaker outfit or our dreams of pushing thew top 5 will diminish quickly and will find it impossible to recover in the following seasons with out type of budget! With a team of players we have at our disposal, you have to be stingy and thats why Moyes was spot on. He would have done a lot better if he had decent resource -there's only so much you can get out of the same group of players, year in year out.

Martinez, be warned!