Another game, this time against Burnley, and more disappointment ladled onto fans. Despite a good first ten minutes (was it even that?) we rapidly regressed, eventually succumbing to a great passing move from Burnley. Yes, Burnley.
A pundit noted this week that we’ve built a nice house, but forgot the roof. I’ll add to that, we also have three front doors and no doorbell. What’s even more galling is that last year our blue house was in pretty good working order. Worse still, it’s only after a summer of expensive renovations and tinkering that we’ve ended up in this mess.
According to our dear majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri, via his broadcasting spirit in the sky Jim White, this was our first unexpected defeat.
— Jim White (@JimWhite) October 2, 2017
Moshiri’s statement was utterly wrongheaded, and there can be no doubt that the PR & Communications team at Everton are at their wit’s end. Instead of a carefully planned (and vetted) statement, Moshiri prefers to release his thoughts to Jim bloody White. Transparency can be good, don’t get me wrong, but with the mood Everton fans are in right now, Moshiri and White’s amateurish screengrab from an iPhone is winding many of us up even more.
Moshiri’s missive is a dog’s dinner from the off. He opens with, “We are in a bad moment.” Any mention of the word “moment” reminds me of Martinez, don’t remind me of Martinez. Please.
He then calls the Burnley loss our “only unexpected defeat”…. Another big mistake…. Unexpected defeat!? You were OK with us being obliterated by other teams without them breaking sweat? And what of us fans, are we just idiots for watching these “expected” defeats? One Australian blue summed it up perfectly:
Hey @Everton, can you or Mr Moshiri let me know which games are expected losses? These 1am kickoffs are really tiring in Australia and some extra sleep will be handy for games we don’t want to win 👍
— Ryan Reynolds (@Reynolds_R) October 3, 2017
Moshiri then moved onto some nonsensical Europa League bashing saying that the extra games in that tournament “haven’t helped” and that we have seven injuries. Is this just a rote regurgitation of Koeman’s excuses to the board for our rotten start? I’m baffled why Farhad Moshiri seems to think that the Europa League is an annoying and damaging distraction to our domestic campaign. This is just the kind of mindless tripe that Arsenal fans have had to put up with for years. Does he think that the sooner we get dumped out of the Europa League, the sooner we can focus on qualifying for the Europa League?!
Moshiri ends by saying that he stands by Koeman, that it’s early days, and that fans deserve better – somehow trying to sit on multiple fences. Next time issue a statement through the club, not through a piss-coloured tie wearing transfermonger.
Nil Statis Nisi Optimum and the Summer of Love
I used to defend David Moyes to the hilt against accusations that he didn’t live up to our motto. I even argued that the NSNO wasn’t realistic with his limited budget. Now though, with expectations dramatically raised, we have a right to hold Ronald Koeman to far higher standards.. This summer was a jabbering avalanche of statement of intent after statement of intent, a summer of puffed out chests and promises. I was giddy with all our signings. Transfer celibacy was a thing of the past. This was the summer of transfer love. Now we had millions to spend and lots of players willing to dance with us… Somehow though, when we sobered up and the music stopped and the lights came on we had three tenners stuffed down our trousers and not much else.
And what of that 20 goal a season striker? Why do we suddenly need one? Didn’t Koeman speak about us learning to share the goals throughout our attack. I thought it was our plan to sell our 20 goal a season striker and share the goals among several players… And all this talk of Giroud… He wouldn’t have solved our pace problems, he would have just added to them. A few days ago the Arsenal Twitter account wished the Frenchman a happy 31st birthday (wow – he’s the same age as Wayne?!) and asked what fans would get him for his birthday. A huge swathe of Gooners replied with one word: pace.
He celebrates turning 31 today…
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) September 30, 2017
“You said ‘Koeman Out’ – HOW. COULD. YOU!?!?!”
This week there was a pearl clutching reaction to the fans from many corners, with some saying that it would be madness to fire Koeman after seven games. But that number is wrong. It has been more than seven games – and it was pretty bad at the end of last season too. What is so shocking about wanting Koeman out? About blaming him for his scattershot tactics, his odd signings, and his inability to rouse either the players or fans?
We’ve started this season horribly, getting trounced my most of the “big” teams we’ve played, and enduring the worst ever start to a Europa League group campaign by an English team. We have no big name striker, an utterly skewiff lineup, and a manager with more ambitions for himself than Everton. We have a high profile director of football in Steve Walsh who, in concert with Koeman, has built a lopsided team bereft of confidence. It isn’t just incoming transfers that have been poorly planned either. At the beginning of the summer people were rubbing their hands together at the thought of how much money we’d get for Lukaku and Barkley. I can answer that question now: we’ll get £75 million for both. A paltry sum in today’s market.
This summer we baked a cake with our ambitions. It’s come out of the oven burnt to a crisp.