Catch up with all the goings-on and kicking-off’s on planet Everton in the cold reaches of the Twitter-verse
Even before his side’s 3-0 annihilation at the hands of Ever-loan, Arsene Wenger was the latest (and probably most high-profile) person to ignite the loan issue. As reported by The Independent the grumpy, sleeping bag wearing Frenchman made sure to make his excuses before being served a warm helping of humble-loan pie at Goodison Park
Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger slams player loan system http://t.co/4QpFJl4eKm
— Indy Sport (@IndySport) April 5, 2014
On Thursday, The Mail’s Martin Samuel decided to weigh in on the matter but it really wasn’t clear which stance the columnist was taking. The headline suggested Samuel was ‘hooked’ by Everton’s ‘fairy-tale’ (because that’s the kind of patronising language that shows respect…) The piece itself championed teams gambling barrel-fulls of cash on players that might not work out while condemning a system that allows teams to challenge the status-quo within it’s means. To make matters worse, he suggests that every Premier League club should have wealthy fan owners like Bill Kenwright. Wealthy…WEALTHY!?!?
Here’s how @rbmersey told it’s followers:
Martin Samuel spouting rubbish again, but proof we're ruffling a few feathers. Long may it continue http://t.co/X3puv36KBI
— Royal Blue Mersey (@RBMersey) April 9, 2014
Cue a Twitter-storm of out-raged Evertonians. While I get the feeling that Samuel was genuinely trying to condemn the system in place rather than Everton for using the system, the media narratives that are so ingrained on a national level simply side with the established Premier League elite, leaving nothing but a patronising pat on the head for little Everton.
Everyone seemed to have their say but Evertonians were pleased to see their Catalan leader respond in kind, brought to us by Liverpool Echo correspondent Greg O’Keefe:
Martinez shrugs off criticism of #EFC's use of loan system pointing out that Blues also have 7 players out on loan (1/2)
— Greg O'Keeffe (@GregOK) April 10, 2014
"It's got its pros and cons but for us it was vital. We've given young players an opportunity. To criticise us is ridiculous." RM on loans
— Greg O'Keeffe (@GregOK) April 10, 2014
Samuel’s counter-piece to Evertonians’ responses to his original article, argued that if Everton had bought their loan stars on permanent deals, the money spent on acquiring them might have seen the club fall foul of Financial Fair Play rules. But aren’t FFP rules in place precisely to stop this kind of reckless spending? To encourage clubs to live within their means? To develop and give first-team opportunities to young and/or home-grown players (Barkley, Stones)?
Why bother to imagine a hypothetical universe where Everton grow ever-replenishing money trees at Finch Farm, when you’ve said in a previous article that you think the Premier League should be run by 20 Bill Kenwrights?
He might not be everyone’s cup of tea but The Mirror’s John Cross points to the ease at which certain Premier League managers are willing to forget things they said less than 12 months ago:
Worth remembering Arsenal tried to sign Demba Ba on loan and Wenger applauded Everton's use of the loan rules.
— John Cross (@johncrossmirror) April 11, 2014
Fan-site NSNO.co.uk host an article with some interesting comments from Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson, a self-confessed Blue currently at the reigns of the city council about re-opening Everton’s ground-move discussions.
Everton to announce new stadium debate within months http://t.co/XLjiE2pN9J
— NSNO Everton website (@nsno) April 11, 2014
Joe says that the council have been in dialogue with the club, with both parties putting offers forward to each other. He said:
“We’re working with Everton and I’m confident that we’ll be able to put a proposal forward shortly.”
“We’ve invested quite a substantial amount of money around the area [of Anfield] and I’m sure Liverpool Football Club would be the first to admit that.”
The stadium issue has gone very quiet in and around L4 since the disaster that was Destination Kirkby, and while the odd ground-share shout has been heard, more so in national media than at a local level, Joe has clearly stated the idea of sharing a stadium is more-or-less a non-starter:
“It’s not going to happen. The proposals from both clubs are so far advanced now that it’s academic, so let’s move on from that.”
Player of the Month
Who else vomited in to their corn-flakes this morning when they woke up to see that not two, but three Kopites had won the Premier League’s awards for March?
It was bad enough that Brendan Rodgers was given the award over Roberto Martinez when the pair achieved matching success last month, taking maximum points from every league game. But seeing Brenda line up for a cheesy photo with DJ Stevie G and Tom Daley, I mean Luis Suarez was enough to put anyone off their morn-flakes.
Giving a Player of the Month award to two players of the same team for them to ‘share’ is nothing short of cringey. It’s the sort of thing an under-10’s manager-cum-Dad would do to keep the kids happy- making sure his own son and the kid who genuinely is better than him, both get the praise they deserve. N’aww.
Anyway, Sylvain Distin picked up Everton’s own Player of the Month award at a Hilton Hotel lunch on Thursday.
— Everton (@Everton) April 11, 2014
I’m not saying the Frenchman has not deserved it, but I’m surprised he took the gong ahead of the likes of Romelu Luakaku, Ross Barkley and Seamus Coleman. Oh, and James McCarthy. And Gareth Barry. Oops, nearly forgot Leighton Baines, John Stones, Tim Howard, Steven Naismith, Leon Osman, Kevin Mirallas, Aiden McGeady, Gerard Deulofeu, Joel Robles, Matthew Pennington, Luke Garbutt, and MAGAYE GUEYE!
Aww hell, let’s give it to the lot of em, they all deserve it. They can each have it for a week, passing the trophy over to the next after a weekend sleep-over. Everyone’s parents happy now? Good.
Another legend passes
The all too sad news of ex Everton player Sandy Brown broke earlier this week, prompting tributes from the football community. Greg O’Keefe’s piece in the Liverpool Echo features quotes from chairman Bill Kenwright who hailed him as a ‘working class hero’ and reveals his remarkable feat of having played every position, including between the sticks!
— Greg O'Keeffe (@GregOK) April 8, 2014
Brown played for the Blues as a defender, making 31 appearances and helping the side clinch the championship title in 1970. Evertonian and author of several books including Howard Kendall’s autobiography Love Affairs and Marriage: My Life in Football, James Corbett led the tributes on Twitter:
Very sad news about Sandy Brown, a great character who has, like many players of his era, been in ill health for many years.
— James Corbett (@james_corbett) April 9, 2014
We know Everton take pride in their former players and the Former Players Foundation does excellent work in supporting those who need it most. It’s always great to see past players paraded on the Goodison turf and Derek ‘Degsy’ Mountfield tweeted this special occasion bursting with Gwladys Street legends:
Last meeting with the late Sandy Brown, will always remember the great reception he got that day RIP Sandy pic.twitter.com/yF3pqUtxfp
— Derek Mountfield (@DegsyMount) April 8, 2014
Let’s sign off with a photo of the great Scot in action for the Toffees