Everton v Brighton Preview

I was dreaming when I wrote this, forgive me if it goes astray.

It’s difficult to read anything about Everton right now, never mind these shite previews, so I’ll throw some more paragraphs out there into the void of online Everton in the hope some lifeform picks it up.

 

 

The Burnley capitulation last game out was another stab on he-with-head-of-bull, as we probably enter the tercio de muerte. Not that it’s entirely down to one man, or even two. In fact it’s a clusterfuck of gigantic proportions this season from many on the payroll at Everton and in such times there needs to be a ritual sacrifice or ten before we can start the healing process. It’s flippant, it’s crazed, you could say I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.

It’s now March and the painful truth is that Everton’s season peaked in the 35th minute of it’s second league game in mid August, away to Manchester City, when Wayne Rooney received a low cross from Calvert-Lewin, slotted, and then ran away antagonising the away fans. There was the zenith of a record spending summer and unbounded optimism amongst the fanbase. Just in that moment. Then the slide started and fucked if we can find any traction yet.

With it being modern times there’s a wave of opinion out there for all of us to indulge with our fellow Evertonians, and on match day if there’s any sort of anything less than an Everton win then the fume will incur. Fact is we do it rather well as a fanbase. If I read back my tweets during and post difficult games I easily deduct I’m a bit of a tit who needs some urgent context in my life, and to grow up.

 

 

Context is boring though, not now in this age of polarised views. Unless you’re extremely for or against – and dead angry – whatever is the issue of the day or month then your opinion is going to be vanilled out pretty quick. No matter what you think you’ll be able to find someone who either matches your viewpoint or is similar enough to embolden as an ally. As a result it’s now easier than ever to take an opinion and refuse to change it. It sets the tone for some crazy views out there, and twitter just loves to retweet these hot takes to fuck.

When times are shit for Everton it’s dead easy to create your own narrative for the predicament based on what you see, what you read and what your biases are. Want to believe Allardyce is a gravy titted fraud who’s putting his fingers up at Everton? Get to it. Moshiri is nothing more than a bagman for the dormant Usmanov wanting a favourable exit from Arsenal to come and spend Everton to a powerhouse? You’ll find that too. Moshiri is fraud and sucking the life out of Everton, leading to yet another failed stadium move? It’s out there on my timeline.

 

 

Everyone creates their own narrative to taste from the abundant material and opinion out there. This then becomes churned around and around until social media chooses the most engaging and contagious  of emotions – white hot anger – as the prevalent narrative and hey presto you have a crisis on your hands, and a wanton media gleefully sucking on it for link clicks, while stoking it themselves. Those with a moderate opinion get swept under the noise and subsequently it an be difficult to understand what the fuck is going on.

I’ve been feeding that narrative with with the jargest of Allardyce quotes in the past week on twitter, even going as far as to quote YNWA in yesterday’s press conference. There were some Lookman on loan updates that again lead to some directed rage at  Allardyce too. I’ve deducted that Allardyce doesn’t stand a fucking chance as many want to believe he’s saying this absurd stuff from an account with a woolmap as as it’s avatar and absolutely no news credentials.

There’s a tipping point amongst us where there’s a point of no return. For Koeman it was the Arsenal game, for Martinez it was when tennis balls starting getting lashed on the pitch. In both instances Moshiri hasn’t waited about (in contrast to his predecessor) and pulled the plug, sucking up considerable severance pay outs in both instances. Some may see this as loyal to our NSNO (lad) traditions, and others may twitch a little uncomfortable at it having parallels with Venky’s or all the other mental owners that have embellished our league. Allardyce will go at the end of the season I reckon and there’s not any Evertonians out there that would argue against it, and then we will be onto our next quest for figurehead and saviour. The fourth time we will have entered this process in two years. It’s a boom bust cycle that seldom yields anything other than relegation.

 

 

The rot is deeper than a Manager or four. Changing just the Manager in the summer would be akin to putting a sticking plaster over a particular troubling ulcer. There’s been many contributors to the demise of Everton. In a competent business with such turnover, public interest and market competition a similar occurrence would lead to a painstaking thorough review  of performance against KPIs, and drastic measures taken to resolve. Managers and Directors would tumble. Let us not forget the expensively assembled playing squad who shit it most weeks and are onto failing their third manager in one season. There’s no need for narrative, just facts.

Anything less than this figurative fifty food yard brush sweeping hard come summer and I worry for both what is coming next. To completely embrace the hysteria I was poorly articulating before, there’s a bigger tipping point waiting to happen this summer if the club get it wrong. With a disillusioned but empowered playing staff sat on massive contracts, a growing apathetic fan base and with yet another new Manager to riskily bed in there’s a potent storm brewing.

I just hope they know what the fuck they’re doing, as all the above is manifesting itself on the pitch most weeks now and it’s mighty disheartening.

 

 

Hey, speaking of that, how many points have we won that we deserved this season? Go and have a wee think back to all the games we won and drew. We’ve had our fair slice of luck and heavens forbid if we didn’t. We’d be nudging West Brom out of the way for air.

No there’s not any sort of crescendo that this is leading to, sorry. Let’s talk very briefly about Brighton.

Chris Hughton is one of the good guys in footie and therefore it’s nice to see a new team in the league with such a guy as its leader consolidate and get a crack at another season. They’re now above Everton in the league. For a team who came into this season with essentially a Championship squad embellished by £50m of new signings it’s quite some achievement.

 

 

I’ve been to Brighton only the once and had a pleasant enough experience so sadly there’s nothing in the tank to cruelly typecast them with, but I’m sure a couple of seasons in the Premier League will prove toxic to their fans’ ego and we will be able to sneer at them somehow.

I’ve little interest in previewing their players as I know shit about them, apart from Locadia who I signed on Pro Evo and Shane Duffy who was always a good sort for us and therefore is pleasing to see him back, until his customary 83rd minute winner from a shitshow of a corner.

Do you know that Brighton have never won at Goodison? You do now.

 

 

What to do with a problem like Everton? Pay me six million big a year and I’ll happy have a good crack at it. Fail like fuck at it too mind. Tosun is causing all sorts of debate but in reality there’s a player trying to adapt from an inferior league and it’s likely we won’t see him settle until next season. Sure we paid £27m but that’s sadly unordinary these days. Nice headed goal though, we love that shit from our centre forwards. Many a heart softened when seeing 2 strikers on the team sheet v Burnley, only for DCL to end up doing the Eto’o dance out wide on the left. I could throw all sorts of formations at you here as some sort of answer but what does this tit on the internet really know? Make sure Sigurdsson is in there doing bits though.

Fuck our midfield.

You know this season hasn’t gone to plan when we’re eagerly welcoming back the clearance scrambling Patagonian gazelle, Funes-Mori. But good to see him return and let’s throw a ten year contract at him if it means I never see Ashley Williams in an Everton shirt again. That’s not an exclusive club either, summer should provide good company for Mr Williams.

In all reality it will probably be Jagielka and Michael Keane, who rather worryingly gets done on through balls so crude and straight that they could be getting zapped by a triangle button in 1996 on International Superstar Soccer. Oh for a Valderama in our midfield right now. Not sure what’s happened to Holgate like. Baines is also reaching fitness but at the stage in his career won’t be the answer, which is fine as he’s gave so much (Woooooster!)  and we’re willing to try anything at the moment to prompt any sort of defensive cohesion. Coleman will be right back, Jordan Pickford will be hopefully a bit more liberal towards his goal line fetish.

 

 

So *exhales* that’s a lot of paragraphs for no one to particularly read.

A long winded way of saying this game is dead important for many reasons. Maybe so was Burnley and Watford though. But when I woke up this morning I could have sworn it was judgement day.

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