It would appear that Everton are once again under scrutiny for daring to try and break the glass ceiling that is the Premier League’s top four. Throwing money towards a solution as Manchester City have done and to a lesser extent Liverpool is apparently okay. What isn’t okay apparently is for teams who can’t throw money at a Champion’s League push finding other ways to compete.
Evertonians shouldn’t even be angry by articles such as those that appeared in The Daily Mail this morning anymore. It’s a desperate attempt by the media to maintain the status quo. Liverpool have been allowed into the fold this season thanks to an intensive campaign to transform public perception by the club. Let us not forget last season Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool were a laughing stock in the media, fast forward twelve months and he’s a visionary and Suarez is being treated like the model pro he undoubtedly isn’t. This isn’t bitterness on my part, Liverpool’s form this season is beyond anyone’s expectation but the difference in their treatment by the media this season does highlight the fickle nature of the national media.
We are not a trendy club. Roberto Martinez is starting to change that but the fact is that David Moyes gave us an underdog tag and it has stuck. That means that we have to work that little bit harder to prove that we belong in the top four. We are a big club but the media have forgot that it is up to us to show them again in any way we can. Martinez gets that and he seems to be finding a way to do it. The media have pointed to how important our loan players are and few would disagree that they have played an important role in our season. Barry and Lukaku in particular have been vital. However, did anyone complain at Sahin’s ill fated big money loan to Liverpool? Is there outrage at Loic Remy’s loan to Newcastle? It would appear that such things only matter when it affects the top four.
Of course concentrating on our loans devalues and insults the contributions our largely excellent core have made to were we are this season. James Mc Carthy has been at least Gareth Barry’s equal and cost, by Everton terms a considerable sum. How about Seamus Coleman? Here is a player bought for pennies and developed by Everton into the best right back in the league? Steven Naismith? Sylvain Distin? Leighton Baine? The list goes on.
This is before I even mention the young players that have come into the side this season. If loans are damaging the game then why doesn’t someone ask Ross Barkley and John Stones how they feel about their lack of opportunities? Is it harming their progression? Would there be an uproar if our loans had all turned out like Lacina Traore? Everton are doing things a different way. Throughout history we have been the innovators and this will continue under Martinez. If and when we break into the top four we will have earned it, we will have deserved. The media can spout their vitriol as much as they like, it changes nothing. Evertonians know it, football fans know it and whether they will admit it or not, the media know it as well.