In the first of a new series of blogs, Ryan Devlin reflects on the last ten months and the season that was, and could have been.
As Everton prepare to close out yet another season under David Moyes, I (and I’m sure many other Evertonians) am left with a strong feeling of disappointment. Yet again we are left without a trophy in a season where Stoke and Birmingham have both contested finals (the latter winning) in competitions where we were dismissed by lower league opposition. We are still left without European football back at Goodison and all the excitement and joy those magic nights under the floodlights brought with them, this is despite taking 4 points each from the 2 sides that are set to finish above us (and only suffering 3 defeats in the 11 games we have played against the top 6 I may add).
Some may say that out poor finishes are simply down to the fact that we don’t have the resources to match the likes of Liverpool and Tottenham. Of course we can’t match these big clubs in terms of spending and it’s unlikely we ever will do but surely we have a squad capable of matching them. As said neither team has beaten us this season whereas we have beaten them both once and were arguably unlucky not to beat them both in the reverse fixtures. We have a manager who is widely renowned for building a great squad with a virtually non-existent budget.
Surely Leighton Baines is better than Benoit Assou-Ekotto or Fabio Aurelio?
Surely Marouane Fellaini can overcome the likes of Lucas Leiva and Tom Huddlestone?
I’m sure I could drag up several more examples of just how capable our squad is of at least matching the likes of Liverpool and Spurs in terms of quality, so what’s the problem? Well the problem seems to be consistency, particularly against the smaller sides. Whilst we’ve been going toe to toe with the giants of the English game it’s the much poorer relegation fighters that seems to have given us the most trouble. Whilst the top sides seem to have the measure of these teams we seem to regularly struggle, no result over the course of the season better illustrates these lackluster performances than the 4-1 home defeat to West Brom, an outcome which should be unthinkable to a side with our ambitions.
Now in an ideal world a billionaire would arrive, give David Moyes an unlimited transfer kitty and we would be welcoming the players (both in quantity and quality) that we all know we desperately need, I think we’d all agree though, that just won’t happen so what else can be done that maybe, just maybe might be what we need to take us forward?
David Moyes is a top manager, no-one (not even me) would dispute that. He has taken a club that was barely fighting off relegation and turned them in to a side that is very disappointed with a 7th place finish. In his time here he has built a squad with enough quality to win a trophy and/or challenge the top 4, yet we continue to fail to do either. I don’t blame Moyes for our failings but it is apparent we are witnessing a team beginning to stagnate and run out of ideas. As much as I’d love a change at boardroom level that simply won’t happen so maybe it’s time we had a change a managerial level, maybe it’s time we gave another young, up and coming manager with fresh ideas (just like we did 9 years ago) the chance to take control of a quality squad and see what he could do with it? Perhaps a new man would be a breath of fresh air for a club with seemingly no other options in terms of how to move forward.
I respect David Moyes immensely for the job he’s done at this club but the last couple of years have made me feel like I can’t bare an endless cycle of disappointing summers, our best players leaving, poor starts with decent finishes resulting in a mediocre finishing position that can only get worse. Although many won’t agree with me maybe it’s time Mr. Moyes passed the torch and went out on a relative high? How else do we advance with a failing board that seems desperate to cling on to a club that’s slowly slipping back towards the mess it was in before Moyes took charge?
One thing is for certain, the next year or 2 could be vital for Everton’s progression, let’s just pray we come out the other side with smiles on our faces.
This is the first of our new “fans’ blogs” section of NSNO in which fans will give open and honest opinion on everything Everton-related. If you would like to take part in this new and exciting section, take a look at our writing for NSNO page and drop us a mail.