Tag Archives: Everton

Everton ready to get rid of key man in summer, Portuguese lined up as replacement

Everton ready to get rid of key man in summer, Portuguese lined up as replacement – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Everton are ready to replace Sam Allardyce in the summer after their poor run of form in the recent weeks.

According to reports, the Shakhtar Donetsk boss Paulo Fonseca is a target for the Toffees.

Allardyce replaced Ronald Koeman at Everton earlier this season but the Toffees are not happy with his contributions so far.

Despite an impressive start to his tenure as the Everton boss, Allardyce’s side has shown no signs of progress. Everton’s win over Palace on Saturday was only their second in ten games.

Farhad Moshiri has invested £239m on new players and it is evident that most of that money has been wasted on mediocre players like Cenk Tosun.

It will be interesting to see if the Toffees can convince Fonseca to take over at Goodison Park at the end of this season.

Allardyce has an 18-month contract at the club but he is simply not good enough to take Everton to Europe. In order to get more out of his investment, Moshiri needs to find a better manager and also improve the club’s recruitment setup.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Everton ready to dump £30 million defensive flop Michael Keane

Everton ready to dump £30 million defensive flop Michael Keane – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Everton are ready to offload £30 million defender Michael Keane.

The former Manchester United and Burnley stopper has failed to impress with the Toffees and manager Sam Allardyce will listen to offers for the 25-year-old.

Keane struggled to make the breakthrough at Old Trafford, but he did enjoy successful loan spells with Derby County, Leicester City and Blackburn Rovers.

He joined Burnley on loan in September 2014, before completing a permanent move for an undisclosed fee the following January.

Everton sealed a big money deal for Keane in July 2017, but the defender has rarely looked like living up to his lofty price tag.

Keane represented England at U19 and U21 level, before being called into the full England squad by interim manager Gareth Southgate for the World Cup qualifying matches against Malta and Slovenia in October 2016. He made his senior international debut in March 2017 in a friendly defeat against Germany.

Keane has been a major disappointment at Everton and a move elsewhere now seems inevitable.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Everton fans abused Morgan Schneiderlin vs Crystal Palace

Everton 3 – Crystal Palace 1

Crystal Palace were big losers in the Premier League on Saturday at Everton.

For the first time since Palace were promoted back into the English top flight, they Eagles lost to Everton.

The goals all arrived in the second half, as Palace lost their concentration at the start of the second half.

Everton’s record signing Gylfi Sigurdsson broke the deadlock, before Oumar Niasse doubled the Toffees’ advantage.

Tom Davies killed the match as a contest scoring Everton’s third, before Luka Milivojevic bagged a consolation penalty for the south Londoners.

Everton fans abused Morgan Schneiderlin

Back in the January transfer window there were reports that Morgan Schneiderlin could leave Everton.

Schneiderlin had attracted negative headlines earlier in the campaign when he reportedly had a training ground bust-up with David Unsworth.

In general, Everton fans have also been unimpressed with Schneiderlin’s performance on the pitch this season.

On Saturday against Crystal Palace, the French midfielder was brought on for Idrissa Gueye with ten minutes to go.

In a scene which everyone in Goodison Park saw, a large chunk of Everton’s crowd booed Schneiderlin as he came on the pitch.

Social media reaction is below.

Also see: Shocker for Everton: Man City defender suffers a knee injury.

Also see: Everton breach? Marco Silva threatens Watford.

Everton boss Allardyce told it’s ‘too late’ by Roy Hodgson ahead of Palace clash

Apology

Sam Allardyce has been told it’s far too late to offer any apology for mocking Roy Hodgson when he was caught in a sting on camera as England boss.

He mocked Hodgson’s speech impediment and called him ‘Woy’, something that many considered to be seriously distasteful at the time – and something that Hodgson expected an apology over.

However, since he’s never been offered one, the Crystal Palace boss claims it’s now too late, and that his relationship with Allardyce isn’t great, ahead of Everton’s meeting with his side.

Hodgson said: “Do you like being insulted? No, not particularly. Did it bother me? I didn’t lose any sleep over it.

“My relationship with him before, I always thought was good. Now I would expect it to be less good.

“Would I like him to apologise? No. It’s far too late. It has gone. It belongs to the distant past.

“In jobs like I am doing at the moment when you are the manager of a Premier League club, you live very much in the ultimate present and the future.

“I’m not interested. I’ve said what I’ve got to say.”

Points

Given how tight it is at the bottom of the table, the one thing all sides need to do is pick up points – especially from the teams around them, and while Everton are in better shape than they were pre-Allardyce, their shocking performance against Arsenal will certainly have knocked their confidence.

Not only that, but it seems that Allardyce may consider a change in players, and Hodgson will know they are there for the taking if he sets his team up right.

Of course, it was a huge blow to Palace to see Zaha added to the injury list that already includes Bakary Sako, Jeffrey Schlupp, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Martin Kelly, Scott Dann, Jason Puncheon, Connor Wickham and Julian Speroni – especially since they’ve not won a league game without him since September 2016.

How to beat Everton? Just remember to defend!

The final days of the transfer window provided us with a handy distraction from Tuesday night’s dismal outing at Swansea. Shiny new Aubameyang and a re-polished Ozil allowed us to focus on two very positive things, but going into today’s game against Everton we have to find a way to respond.

In general, our problems this season have been on the road and at the Emirates we’ve been very solid. This is the table for just home games this season:

That record is something that bothers Arsene Wenger because he says he doesn’t really understand the difference between home and away. There’s a pitch and a ball and some opposition, so what’s the problem? The manager said:

In my whole career, I hated that difference between home and away, that’s why I’m especially unhappy with our away results. Personally, for me, there is no difference. When you walk on the pitch you don’t look too much where you play you just do what it takes to win the game.

Maybe it’s a kind of psychology to ensure his players don’t focus on the fact they’re not in the comfortable surrounds of the Emirates, but could it also put doubts in their mind about playing at home? If we’re crap away, why can’t we be crap here? I hope not, obviously, and today Wenger has to find a way to get his team sorted out again.

A few weeks ago we smashed Crystal Palace 4-1 with a very encouraging performance, but the old adage about only being as good as your last performance applies when you’ve won just three of your last eleven games in the league, and the shambles at the Liberty Stadium looms large over today.

Swansea enjoyed far too much freedom in midfield, and the first goal came from us losing possession and Granit Xhaka switching off at a crucial moment – not for the first time this season. The Swiss international’s place should be in jeopardy, no question, but our midfield options mean that the manager could easily decide to keep him in the team. If it were me, for his sake and ours, I’d drop him because not only is he costing us goals, he’s badly out of form and I think it would do him some good to sit a few games out to get himself refocused.

Assuming we play with a back four again, something Wenger pretty much confirmed in his press conference yesterday, it means three in midfield, and with Jack Wilshere fit again I suspect it’ll be him, plus Aaron Ramsey and if he does drop Xhaka then Mohamed Elneny is the likely candidate to replace him. All things considered, I don’t really an issue with that combination but there’s a lot of responsibility on the Egyptian to offset the more attacking instincts of his two partners.

The other big question, of course, is does he start Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. He seemed to set the scene for the record signing to start from the bench by revealing he’d been sick this week, but he was in full training yesterday and while we don’t have all the medical info available to us, that’s a promising sign.

My suspicion is that he’ll start with Lacazette up front and have Aubameyang as an option from the bench that could really change things if we need to. If things are not going well his introduction would lift the fans and the team, and generally he tends to do this with new players for their first game. That said, fitness/wellness permitting, I’d be all on for lashing him in from the start, and getting him working with Ozil and Henrikh Mkhitaryan straight away, but let’s see.

As for today’s opposition, there’s the return of Theo Walcott to contend with. The potential of of a former player doing you damage is something we always worry about, and he comes into this game having scored twice in midweek. Maybe though, Sam Allardyce will have given us a little boost with some comments made on Friday, saying of Arsenal:

I’ve always felt, that defensively they are weak because of the amount of players they commit forward.

He’s not wrong really, but when the opposing manager calls you ‘weak’ before a game, we’re in pin his words on the dressing room wall territory. Especially coming from someone like Allardyce with whom we’ve had plenty of history. Whether the manager can find a solution to our defensive issues is another question though. He said yesterday he regretted not buying a defender during the window, at the same time insisting the personnel were not the problem:

It’s not a lack of effort, it’s a lack of focus in vital moments of the game. I feel that sometimes we do it well and sometimes not. It’s always difficult. For example, at Swansea we had 75 per cent possession, you always think to attack, to attack and you forget to defend when you lose the ball.

‘FORGET TO DEFEND’?! It means the solution is easy enough, just remember to defend. Makes the team-talk pretty easy. Honestly though, I know Arsene says some stuff in press conferences that we shouldn’t dig too deeply into, but forgetting to defend sounds like it’s right up there with some of the silliest.

The thing is though, you can sort of see he’s right. We often get caught with too many players ahead of the ball; even when we are in defensive situations and positioned correctly, we see lapses of concentration like Xhaka’s on Tuesday night; and at times defending seems like an afterthought.

Let’s hope there’s more focus on that today, and with all the other distractions behind us now, we start to see some green shoots of recovery in terms of our performance and the result. I don’t need to say how important three points are, they need to win this however it happens.

For some extra reading this morning, check out the Tactics Column in which Lewis Ambrose looks at the issue many are wondering about: how does Arsene Wenger deal with his attacking options with the arrivals of Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan? Check it out here.

And, as we have an evening kick off there’s plenty of time to catch up on the podcasts you might not have got around to over the last couple of days. James was back from his travels for a new Arsecast Extra and there’s also the behind the scenes low down of the transfer window with David Ornstein.

Arsecast Extra 211

Arsecast 460 with David Ornstein

Thanks so much for all the nice feedback on the shows this week, glad you enjoyed them. We’ll have a live blog and all the post-match stuff on Arseblog News, catch you later for the game.

Until then.

Arsenal 5-1 Everton: Toffees blown away by Gunners new attacking dynamic

Match reportPlayer ratingsBy the numbersVideo

For the second time this season Arsenal stuck five goals past Everton in the Premier League. The last time it got their manager the sack, this time it simply sparked Sam Allardyce into a tantrum where he blamed his players for not carrying out instructions, probably to distract everyone from the fact he’d called Arsenal defensively weak beforehand and then had to watch his team defend like drunkards on ice. And by ice, I mean meth. But also on actual slippy ice.

Arsene Wenger started with Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, looking for his two new signings to spark some attacking life back into the side, and he was certainly rewarded. The two combined beautifully in the 6th minute, sending the Armenian in behind and his first time cross was stuck away from close range by Aaron Ramsey.

A corner, flicked on by Steve Bould and finished at the back post by Laurent Koscielny doubled the lead, and had the Frenchman not put it away, Aubameyang was loitering with intent and would have made sure.

Update: I actually meant to say Mustafi flicked it on like Steve Bould, but early morning mind mush made it come out like that. I like it though.

Good work from Iwobi and Ozil saw the Nigerian set up Ramsey, and while there was an element of good fortune to the deflection, I choose to think – much like Nacho Monreal against Chelsea the other week – he played for it, skidding a shot off Mangala’s arse which wrong-footed the keeper and flew into the net.

3-0 up after 19 minutes and Everton tried to hit back through Theo Walcott who was denied by a sensational Mustafi block. Ozil provided us a vision of the future when he played Aubameyang in behind and to see an Arsenal striker race towards goal with the opposition going full pelt behind him and not catching him was like a flashback to days of yore when Thierry Henry did exactly the same. Sadly the keeper saved with his feet, but Aubameyang didn’t have to wait long for his goal.

Sure, he might have been offside, but as Arsenal fans we’ve learned that this season offside is a fluid concept which doesn’t mean what we thought it meant, so to be on the right end of one of those was very welcome. It was that combination we were all hoping to see, Mkhitaryan to Aubameyang, and the finish … oooof, really quite delicious indeed.

So, 4-0 at half-time, and much like in the Crystal Palace game it, understandably, went a bit flat for us after that. Everton obviously got a Big Sam bollocking at half-time, I suspect as a punishment he might have even shown them his bollocks, so they were a little more energised and up for it. Theo Walcott was probably their most dangerous player but he was taken off and Dominic Calvert-Lewin game on and promptly scored a goal which denied Petr Cech his 200th clean sheet.

I have visions of watching Arsenal in 2034, an injury crisis has forced Arsene Wenger to call on the former Czech international, and with a gutsy display for a man who had retired 15 years previously and now has to wear headgear the size of a stetson, he finally gets to 200 by saving a penalty.

The Arsenal keeper had been hurt earlier in a clash with Oumar Niasse, and once the goal went in decided he didn’t need to play through the pain so David Ospina came on. He had almost nothing to do for the rest of the game, and as Aaron Ramsey was about to be taken off he completed his hat-trick.

It was fitting that his third goal came from Mkhitaryan’s third assist, and of all of the goals he set up, I liked this one the most. Not because there was anything particularly complicated about it. In fact, it was the simplicity I enjoyed because having won the ball he looked up, saw Ramsey and just played him the perfect pass which the Welshman made no mistake from. It was precision football, and the quality of the pass in the final third is so often the difference between a good chance being taken or going begging.

Ramsey came off, Wilshere came on, and at that point it was done and dusted. Allardyce’s defensive glass house was in bits because of all the stones he’d thrown, and Arsenal had enjoyed another good day at home, a couple of excellent debuts, and all around the pitch there were players who performed well.

Ramsey, Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang’s goal made them stand out, but beforehand there were some worries about the midfield and the team selection. Granit Xhaka might have found himself on the bench had Jack Wlshere not been ill all week, but he put in a very solid performance – one that was badly needed for him and the team.

So too did Alex Iwobi who I thought contributed really well to the way we played, particularly in the first half. I was pleased to see it because he has been the brunt of some criticism lately, but I think since that incident a few weeks ago he’s got his head down, worked hard, looked stronger and fitter, and while he wasn’t great at Swansea, that was true of everyone, not just him.

Afterwards, Arsene Wenger said:

In the first half we were quick, mobile, technically very sharp and we finished very well as well. Overall, the two new players integrated well into our game and they looked as if they had played for us forever. Our challenge, I think, is to find the balance. We are a very offensive team, we want to play that kind of football, but we have to find the balance between attacking and defending and that will certainly be our challenge between now and the end of the season.

I’m not going to say defending is an afterthought or anything like it, but this morning it’s hard not to focus on the other end of the pitch, and what we saw yesterday was really encouraging. For a player to get three assists on his home debut is really something, Aubameyang was quieter in general but showed what he’s about – both with his pace and his finishing – while Ramsey’s hat-trick is very welcome.

In January we lost three players who scored 60% of our goals last season, So, while Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan are excellent additions, we need more from other areas of the pitch too, and we know that Ramsey is more than capable of getting goals from midfield. That takes him to six for the season, with Wenger looking for 10-15, and maybe with the way the attacking dynamic has changed he can get that.

Make no mistake, we are now a different team going forward than we were with Alexis. I’m not dismissing what he did for us or anything like it, but it’s very clear that we’re not going to play the same way with the new players we’ve added to the side. There was more pace to our movement, more zip to our passing, better movement, and Everton just could not cope.

It’s early days, but it augurs well and there was an awful lot to enjoy about yesterday. That’s been in short supply in recent times, so take some time to bask in that today, and I’ll be back tomorrow with more and an Arsecast Extra.

Until then, have a good one.