Monday, 7 November 2011

Onwards and crudwards

Gone (he isn't mentioned anywhere here you know)
To business. What we saw at Sames' Park on Saturday was Everton's problems simply nutshelled. Can't score goals, can't defend, tippy-tappy it around a bit in the middle to no great effect.
The excellent executioners bong website says we're only three points worse off than the same stage last season, when we went on to finish seventh.
Yes we are, but we're also really shit. I mean, needing-a-priest-to-get-out-of-it shit. We seem incapable of regularly getting the ball and some of our players around the opposition box - it's one or the other. Jack Rodwell's goal shows what can happen if you get people forward.
At the back we can't keep crosses out, and this is where we're letting goals in from. Maybe it's because the full-backs aren't getting any protection - I don't know.
Let's not dignify playing Seamus Coleman on the left with any discussion, but generally he's been poor this season. He works had, and yes he was cheap, but he isn't very good. Running fast is great if you're strictly in the running fast business, but he isn't. He's in the controlling the ball and doing something with it business.
On the other side Royston Drenthe is clearly lively and quick and actually a good player, but he's also an idiot.  Prone to wander in, leaving Leighton Baines - our one truly excellent player - on his own. With Drenthe you probably have to budget for one major cock-up a game. Like if your mother was a hen.
Generally the problem seems to be we're going out hoping to get something, rather than forcing things. David Moyes has always been a reactive manager with Everton - rarely changing things early, even if we're playing shit. He's also been generally a conservative one, favouring 4-5-1 most of the time.
It worked well while we had good players but now we don't. Louis Saha - and it's an abject dereliction of duty to leave your team relying on him for goals - is isolated in most games or ends up going out wide to pick the ball up, leaving us with nowt up front.
Newcastle had two up front on Saturday and it meant that our centre halfs couldn't settle, whereas we are content to sit back and defend from the halfway line. This can work but wouldn't it be better to have some pressure further up the pitch?
This formation got the best out of players like Mikel Arteta, Steven Pienaar and Tim Cahill, but two of those have now gone and the other one is struggling for form.
Cahill's not scored for Everton since - you'd think this would be easy to find what with that internet and all but it isn't. I think it's about a year. Anyway, coincidence?
We look like a team struggling, not just for form, but for confidence. If we concede one everyone knows there's little chance of us scoring two.
Look at how Newcastle defended on Saturday, they did just enough most of the time. Like against Manchester United we never really looked like scoring - there were few occasions where you'd think, he should have scored.
Newcastle look half-decent but that's about it, we look slow and knackered. They had more than enough for to keep us out.
Moyes has obviously been dealt a shitty hand on transfers but he has to get on with it because if this team gets stuck down the bottom I doubt it has the quality or the oomph to get out of it.
Moyes seems to send them out looking to keep it tight until half time and go from there. He needs to send them out to attack because lately we look like we're hoping to draw, and it isn't working.

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