Welcome to Everton, Marco.
There you were casually doing them tactic things, flashing an impressive watch on the touchline, the weird thing in press conferences where you suck your top lip slightly behind your lower lip, and then BOOM you got beat to West Ham at home.
Reeks of complacency and it’s just not good enough, you’ve taken the head clean off NSNO and pissed in the neck basically Mr Silva. And for that you must pay.
And so it was in his sixth game as Everton Manager that Marco Alexandre Saraiva de Silva – to give him his full kopite title – lost his first game and thus his beautiful Iberian flower died. No doubt Moyes is licking his lips and making sure he’s working double ovies on a zero hour for any media outlet that will have him. He wants to get the gang back together again, but this time railroad Moshiri into buying a striker so Everton are truly back. Back baby. Fucking back.
Rewind a moment there how the fuck did we arrive there? It was one defeat. Just a solitary loss, and one in which we played better than probably 80% of all games last season. So why does it feel like the pressure is on Marco Silva?
I’ve been studying this through some extensive research on social media (scrolling through twitter) and through highly scientific polling of Evertonians (shit polls where no one votes, also on twitter). I have a definitive answer. The reason why there’s a big hullabaloo about Everton’s manager tasting his first defeat is – you ready for it – twitter itself.
You see, most Evertonians that you surround yourself with are sound. Sure there may be the odd crazy in your gang but it spices things up, plus he or she have other redeeming features so you’ve forgiven them for still being insistent that Bilyaletdinov could player behind the striker, or that Lukaku was a fraud. A couple of pints of Carling after a particularly disappointing result and they’ve got over their rage accusations and are reminiscing about the time they hitchhiked to every game and sold their bathroom to get to Rotterdam etc etc. Twitter doesn’t work like that though. Take that crazed opinion and suddenly it’s getting retweeted the fuck out of it, comments flying left right and buffalo, and hey presto it’s got the platform it usually doesn’t get. Now let me tell you dear reader that tweeting one crazy opinion is like a big fuck off royal blue bat signal for all the other crazies, so now they jump in eager to cement a rare ally, and the debate turns into a vortex of fume until someone calls the other nonce sufficiently for a block or temporary ban.
But everyone’s seen it, and it’s stuck in their minds, as opposed to the reasoned views they also read or even discussed with you in person. And that loco has been magnified beyond their true representation in the fanbase. Not only that but you seen other crazy fucks with the same opinion because of the bat signal. Suddenly there’s a cultural problem, an inherent texan outbreak amongst those you call your fellow blues. But it’s the other way. I’ve just threw a Marlo quote out there to contextualise Marco, and therefore quite happy to end this pointless fucking monologue right here and now.
So onto Arsenal and the chances are we’re looking at 2 consecutive weekends of Everton dipping because while they’re not at the very pinnacle of this league, they’re better than us, playing at home and look in much better form than our bunch.
They’re also under a transformation too as Arsene Wenger eventually binned edgy cockney flutes protesting his presence, and in came Unai Emery who looks one part Get Off My Train and two parts Channel 5 Hammer Horror (the films, not last weekend). I’d use this as my lead to decimate Emery but he’s got loads of credit in my goodwill bank for providing us with the eternal beauty of The Fanta Scruff Final when his Sevilla team left boxies wafting in the wind, post right hook from a heroic four foot Spanish Power Ranger.
As it happens Arsenal are sort of relevant to my opening few paragraphs about “the modern fan” and their increasing impact in and around the game. When you think Arsenal fan now, many of you will go straight to Arsenal Fan TV in your mind. Small sharable chunks of post game fury, entitlement and some dead fucking weird lexicon have been flying around the past few seasons to give the impression that all Arsenal fans are twats. It doesn’t matter what the reality is because the only reality that matters is what’s presented on the internet and various media.
There’s been a shift in football away from being patronised by long standing (usually kopite) pundits, and social media is happy to fill that gap. Eager media sources can then spin it that they’re in there truly representing the fans. Media being media though there’s bias towards drama in soliciting this fan opinion. Suddenly the fans voice is paramount in what decisions the football club have to take. If there’s a shitload of pressure on the players/manager/owners then even better the impact the story makes. And the reasonable, ordinary fan looks on.
Were those Arsenal fans right to rally strongly against Wenger? Only time will tell. But what happens if Emery doesn’t work, then the one after that? Then you have a boom bust cycle fuelled mainly by the edgiest fans, and the weakness or desperation to be liked of the owner. You could argue that Everton’s competitive edge in a crowded marketplace under Moyes was continuity and consistency, allowing for mid term plans to come to fruition, where others were chopping and changing. Those “glass ceiling” fifth placed finishes that we’d sell our second born for now. Arsenal qualifying with comfort for the Champions League every season became the norm. Were we both too comfortably numb and yearning for some excitement, some strange? Or were you just watching the games, maybe saying the odd over the top thing caught in the moment and then you’ve calmed; incredulously watching as some absolute shitheel pretends to speak for your entire fanbase? What happened to moderate opinions being sound? Stop fucking polarising me. Who is polarising me? No one, absolutely no one, this righteous battle is entirely invented in my head and only half a mirtazapine can send me to sleep.
And before the WERS YER AMBISHUN NSNO LAD posse ride me out of town, I wanted Moyes moved on too. Way too deep, this preview.
Anyway just checked and it seems Arsenal have won their last four games, coupled with not winning at Arsenal since before Wenger was even Manager means that this is one tough task for any Everton member of staff seeking quasi redemption for the West Ham shitshow.
Their players? You know them, but here’s some of them:
Aubameyang – Slight, pacy, technically gifted, tortures Everton at home like so so many of his Arsenal team mates in the 20 years before him.
Lacazette – see above.
Ramsey – still burns my head out that Stoke fans boo him because he broke his leg.
Ozil – Let a warm owl roost on his eye sockets and 2 chicks will hatch approximately 7 weeks later.
Torreira – diminutive all action midfielder signed from Sampdoria this summer, he’s pretty good and this is your warning.
Mustafi – FOR FUCK SAKE MOYLES PLAY THE KIDS oh hang on Arsenal just played over 20 large for the bad pube head and he’s fucking shit.
Papastathopoulos – Finally, an Arsenal player with more letters in his name than goals we concede against them in a season.
Cech – hoping Michael Keane doesn’t take his lead and return looking like a dopey basketballer trying to play Prop.
Onto Everton. There’s nothing quite like a defeat to offer up gaping holes that you could see but our recruitment team in the summer seemingly couldn’t (hint: they could). Take up front for instance, I offered up a cautionary fret about Tosun’s lack of goals a few weeks ago and right away was reminded that he ran about loads up front and enabled others to take the glory. If that was how things worked then Marcus Bent would have had a stand named after him at any new home we eventually stumble into.
Tosun is out of form and confidence, this doesn’t mean he’s shit but instead means he may have to spend some time on the bench while Everton explore other options to get them goals they need to win games. Richarlison is back from his suspension and is the obvious candidate, but anyway I reckon Tosun starts this, along with Richarlison one side and Walcott the other. Bernard looked sound for a first half of competitive English football. Like a wee Pienaar but with pace, going way overboard here.
Everton haven’t got their mix in midfield right either, and it’s against better opposition that this will show if not solved. Passing the ball through to blue shirts in advanced positions seems primarily the problem. Hoping new signing Gomes can remedy this is risky as there’s no guarantees he transitions across to English football so well, the Sigurdsson in a two test didn’t work so well either. Gueye’s passing was shite last game out, so considering all of this I’ll side step any suggestions this tactically dumb dickhead can muster and leave it to M Silva.
Defence isn’t a happier story either on the basis that we keep conceding way too many goals. For pinning hopes on Gomes also read: Mina. I’m in the camp that reckons Holgate will turn into a fine central defender but his inexperience is exposed at the moment, so it’s up in the air for two – any two for fuck sake – to form some sort of cohesive partnership that doesn’t piss goals. Digne and Kenny didn’t look so shit last game out which elevates them to our Man Of The Match by default. Pickford will play in goal, he doesn’t concern me the occasional fuck up or two because he’s one fine keeper.
Only the most optimistic of you would call an Everton win this weekend with any sort of confidence. I’ve completely failed to articulate it sufficiently above but for this season the results may not be the main consideration. Without delving into “we won the passing” realms here it’s going to take some time to *hopefully* jump start Everton out of a multi season malaise. And for that we are going to all need to roll with the punches, including yet more of the gut wrenching weekend ruining defeats that Everton do so well.
Why do I even need to explain this? You’re just like me. You get where this at.
Tell you what though, we really could do with a fucking win.