Everton 0-3 Tottenham…
Quarter-hearted, half witted, and totally depressing…
…And it could have been so much more, we were genuinely lucky not to be on the receiving end of a considerably more brutal beating.
Yes, it’s early in the season. Yes, a lot of our players need to acclimatise. Yes, Spurs are great, and were no doubt overjoyed to be away from roomy Wembley and back at a cozy pitch against the Everton invertebrates. On top of this Sod’s Law was out in force. Kane, freshly released from his August curse, remembered how to score. Twice*. Sissoko, supposedly an abject failure of a signing, was an absolute beast, slapping our midfield into embarrassing submission.
To get the best out of Everton, you have to turn Goodison into a fortress. On Saturday it was a sieve.
Selling Lukaku didn’t have to be the end of the world. Koeman’s tactic of replacing Lukaku’s goals with a more communal effort seemed sound. But not buying a striker entirely, and then relegating Calvert-Lewin to the bench, seems like an act of self sabotage. Add to that the two defensive midfielders, three number tens, and half of our back four looking hungover or drunk – or both – and we had a recipe for disaster. Martina looks competent – occasionally good, even – going forward but he isn’t the answer at the back, and the £12 million we paid for Ashley Williams looks like a rip off even in today’s hyper-inflated market – since when was his first touch a flinch?
Koeman seems intent on short term fixes, ignoring youth, and persisting with players who don’t have the legs or stomach for a fight. The thud and blunder of Saturday’s mess of a display against Spurs can’t be repeated. Chances to make amends will come thick and fast with our clogged calendar. Goodison doesn’t suffer fools.
PremierLeague: Sat 20 Jan (15:00); West Brom at Goodison
Wed 31 Jan (19:45); Leicester City at Goodison