Monday, March 31, 2008

Everton respond to Benitez's self-righteous jibes


Absolutely spot on response from Everton :

Everton have responded to comments made by Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez concerning the Toffees' travelling fans.

Benitez criticised Everton's away support in the wake of Sunday's 207th Merseyside derby, claiming they showed 'a lack of respect' with chants aimed at Steven Gerrard at Anfield.

Ian Ross, Everton's Head of PR, issued a statement in response.

He said: "Whilst we would never condone the singling out of individual players for vitriolic insults, it is a shame that Mr Benitez chose to ignore the actions of his own club's supporters.

"Not only was Joleon Lescott subjected to an afternoon-long barrage of quite disgusting and quite audible abuse, Phil Neville was seemingly spat at several times and was also punched in the back by a supporter as he took a throw-in.

"We have asked Merseyside Police and our Safety Officer to look into the matter.

"In calling for Everton supporters to respect his players, Mr Benitez should, perhaps, remember his comments of 12 months ago when he sought to belittle one of world sport's oldest and most respected institutions by describing us as a 'small club'. Respect is a two-way street."

Everton take a battering, Phil Neville takes a punch, Benitez takes the oportunity for another anti-Everton jibe

First and foremost Everton got battered by liverpool, top to bottom, start to finish. 4th looks a long way off when you look at the last three performances. The crazyness of this year’s cups means that UEFA cup qualification is looking difficult too. So many players have gone of the boil at the crucial time, it’s just worrying that such a great season is in danger of ending in disappointment.

In the backdrop of this comes that arrogant Spanish prick Benitez’s usual sly jibes at Everton. This time our fans are giving Gerrard too much abuse. Boo fucking hoo…I remember him running along the Lower Bullens giving it ears and I’m sure Super Kev, Gary Naysmith and now Lee Carsley remember getting stamped on. It’s not particularly savoury but ultimately you reap what you sow. It is a bit rich publicly criticising one set of fans whilst his own have been spitting at and hitting Phil Neville our captain…of course he doesn’t care about that, he knows how it will be reported and how much the Liverpool fans lap up his little digs…was it lost in translation again Pendejo?

Thursday, March 27, 2008

David France article in The Telegraph

Outstanding article in The Telegraph about David France and his collection with a good mention to the Everton Former Players Foundation. :

As the granddaughter of William Ralph 'Dixie' Dean, Melanie Prentice grew up surrounded by football treasures accumulated by the Everton legend during a playing career that brought him two League championships and an FA Cup triumph. But nothing had prepared her for the array of artefacts awaiting her arrival at Dr David France's home in Victoria, British Columbia.

"We were bewildered by the original artwork of Picasso, Magritte, Dali, Chagall, Warhol, Miro and others," she recalls. "It was an overwhelming sight but a mere distraction because before our eyes lay a priceless exhibition of the masterpieces of football's history. I can only draw comparison with Howard Carter as he opened the door to Tutankhamun's tomb. While there were no gilded mummies or papyrus scrolls, there were simply too many sacred football items to comprehend…"

Programmes dating back to 1886, ancient medals and photographs, books and international caps, documents and letters, cigarette cards and trading cards… Dr France's collection of football memorabilia attracted two bids of £1.25 million from the Middle and Far East in 2006, instead of which it will go on display when the new Museum of Liverpool opens in 2010, having been purchased by the Everton Collection Charitable Trust for a fraction of what the 10,000 or so items would have commanded at auction.

Born in a two-up, two-down in Widnes with one cold tap, one electric light, one outside toilet and one nail holding up a zinc bath, Dr France was dismissed as a 'slow learner' as a schoolboy and was unable to read until the age of 14. Having begun his working life as an apprentice gas-fitter riding the streets on a bike with coils of copper pipe over his shoulders, he resumed his education and gained several university degrees, including a PhD in chemical engineering. He subsequently won the Institute of Physics' Joule Medal for his research into hydrogen combustion, served as a consultant to NASA in rocket science (his Green Card having been sponsored by Senator Edward Kennedy) and ended his working life at the age of 42 in 1990 to concentrate on 'good deeds'.

As well as combing the world for Everton jewels for the past 25 years, he has flown more than two million miles from his homes in Canada and Washington state to attend games, published 16 books (the latest, The Golden Vision, about 1960s centre-forward Alex Young) to raise money for Alder Hey Children's Hospital, established the club's Hall of Fame and founded the Everton Former Players' Foundation, a charity to assist old Evertonians who have fallen on hard times and which Uefa use as their template for all such associations.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


France 1-0 England


Lescott didn't get injured tonight. That's about the only news. Nice to see Beckham get his 100th cap but ultimately that was a poor, poor, poor, poor, poor game. Not many people out there desperate to show the new boss what they can do. It seemed like the players had taken Nicolas Sarkozy's warm & comradely words to heart. Now I'm a Europhile myself by jeez...Get into them lads.


Crossing the park

Cool article about players who've played for both Everton and liverpool

That makes a total of no less than 29 players to make the direct move between Liverpool and Everton, with 20 of those being from Goodison to Anfield and 9 in the opposite direction. The most surprising part of this figure is that it turns out to be the greatest number of transfers between Liverpool and any other club, and 10 more than the next most common. Since Everton are our closest neighbours and most common trading partner, it would be natural then to expect Tranmere Rovers to be the next most common club for transfers, which turns out to be correct. What is perhaps most surprising is that there have only been 19 players transferred between Liverpool and Tranmere, with 4 from and 15 to the Wirral club. The next most common is Sunderland with 17, followed by a group of four clubs with 16.

The number of transfers between the two rival clubs is surprising to begin with, but even more so when we realise that there are also a fair number of players who played for both sides without making the move directly. David Burrows, Steve McMahon, and Don Hutchison have all represented both clubs, while a few others such as Dave Watson, Alan Harper, and Mike Newell played for Liverpool as youths and later played for Everton at the senior level. Beyond that, there are a fair number of Liverpool players who grew up as Evertonians. These include Robbie Fowler, Steve McManaman, Michael Owen, Ian Rush, and Jamie Carragher. Steven Gerrard was even photographed in an Everton strip as a young lad, much to the delight of the Blues supporters who found a copy of it.

With all of that activity between the two Merseyside clubs, they might look more co-operative than competitive. Perhaps that's not so surprising when we think not only of how physically close the two clubs are to each other, but also of how the two clubs are historically related. In fact, the analogy could be that the two clubs are like brothers and perhaps should respect each other as such. Then again, is there anything more satisfying than beating your brother?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Beneathus whinging

It has to be said it's great to see Benitez again making such an undignified public spectacle of himself and his club. I remember a time when Everton were the running joke and you had to work long & hard to come up with anything to criticise liverpool about.

The latest bleat-fest centre's on Mascherano's self-destruct routine at Old Trafford. Now I studied the footage on Match of the Day and I am pretty sure I've worked who was to blame for the whole incident. Not so The Rafatollah

The more deluded rednoses might still be lapping it up (just look at the excuse for journalism they get spoon fed by the local rags :

FAN VIEW: United have a new hero - Steve Bennett

The facts are the Utd are a street ahead of everyone this's just that certain teams have spent £150,000,000 attempting to close the gap only to see it widen.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Running on empty?

Everton 1-1 West Ham

In a way this sort of performance was inevitable. Earlier in the season Everton were just calmly dismissing sides like West the end we have to be glad of the point.

They'd hit the bar early on but I'd say we'd started brightly with the Yak scoring a great goal and having another wrongly disallowed.

As the game went on it became more and more apparent that the referee, Halsey, was allowing a lot of slack...How Ashton made it to half time without getting booked is a mystery. All Everton got for their dominance was a few mystifying advantages played when we barely had the ball under control and the foul had occured in a dangerous place. That said Howard had already pulled off a miracle save with his legs from a deflected free-kick.

Everton just had an air of tiredness and feeling sorry for themselves which seemed to become more entrenched as the game went on. We really missed Johnson, Cahill and Pienaar. Ultimately it was West Ham who took the game by the scruff of the neck and probably should have won it. Everton can feel pleased with the point expecially with all the teams around us dropping points. It was not the ideal preparation for next week's derby though. That is a make or break game. As it stands we are 2 points behind our lovable neighbours and 7 points clear of the chasing pack. A good position to be in but the last two games have been really disappointing...I think possibly 3 months of playing absolutely flat-out might finally be catching up with us.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Had a nice day on Saturday watching three matches of rugby. The fact that I've given up beer for lent dampened things somewhat but not really that muxh. Was in Bangor, North Wales for my brother-in-law's stags do and the Welsh grand-slam was top of the menu.

Italy v Scotland intrigued, it's great to see Italy doing well. They are slowly maturing and are becoming a real asset to the tournament. In the coming years you can see them challenging for the championship.

England came next, a few muted cheers from the locals greeted the Irish probing but England were impressive, there is no way to get round it. Everything clicked. Ireland were woeful, a revitalised England got quick ball from backs to forwards, it all flowed. Virtuouso performances from Cipriani and awesome tackling by Noon in particular shone. Where did performances like that and the one in Paris come from when you look at the abject capitulation against Wales and Scotland? Would the real England please stand up!

Danny Cipriani

Jamie Noon

And so onto Wales, I never really thought it was in doubt...France effectively started the game 25 points down. The Welsh started so well and the French didn't really react. The Welsh's none-commiting rucking meant there was never any space for the French to get going. The locals all lauded the grand slam and well done to just wonder what would have happened if England hadn't have had a mad 40 minutes in the opening game. Still what-ifs don't cut it. Hats off to the champions.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Fulham 1 - 0 Everton. It did have a bit of an inevitablity about it.

It really was a sickener though. Why do we always blow it at Craven Cottage? Fulham are a poor, poor side but you can't argue with the result. I know some sort of dip is understandable after the 120 minutes & the heartbreak of Wednesday but surely that was the perefect game to put it right in. We've been notable for our "bouncebackabilty" (thank you Ian Dowie) this season. A win there would have got everything back on track, instead the pressure is on now.

At least Villa lost I suppose. Worried about the striker situation. Having one fit forward can't be good, even poor Lukas Jutkiewicz is injured whilst on loan.

Joleon Lescott

Waterloo chipped in with a good win
at the weekend. Very good to see. There were a few vague relegation concerns after their losing streak. Now we are alomst certain to stay in National Division Two for another season. Chris O'Callaghan seems to think we are going in the right direction and I'd tend to agree. *Edit* More concerning is the reports coming from the AGM, from the report I read in the Daily Post the financial situation isn't the best. Attendances are pretty pitiful really, and it seems they aren't enough to meet the expenditures. My view...everyone needs to mobilise the troops. Bring everyone they know to the match, it's a great place to watch sport...more scousers need to get down there.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

European reflections

Everton really have lit-up what's a pretty tawdry competition. UEFA Cup for all it's faults could be the place where David Moyes' Everton came of age....that could be wishful thinking but everything considered last night really does cap a superb European sojurn. There might be fantastic things to come for Everton in the future but that Arteta goal last night was just an awesome, awesome moment....I think it's one that will always stay with me. The place went bonkers, ballistic, bananas it was royal blue bedlam. It's making me smile every time I think about it.

We had a bad night at the office in Florence and then went out on put it right in proper style. We took them to the cleaners last night, they were hanging on by there fingernails. Aside from that dodgy night in Florence that whole European party was ace (but for one silly mistake against Metalist at Goodison we'd have set a record for the longest ever winning streak by an English team in Europe)...the UEFA cup is still shite ( ;) ) but Everton are fucking ace.

It's great to think back over it. Metalist's porky physio getting dogs abuse from the Gwladys, McFadden's goal in the Ukraine, Victor suckering the defender to make it safe. The way he calmed the nerves against Larissa then just looked at the Gwladys as if to say "What was all the fuss about", dealing with Nurnberg's pressure then showing our class, The professional performance Zenit, winning at fortress Alkmaar, taking Brann to the cleaners then picking ourselves up off the floor and battering Fiorentina. 3, possibly 4, Champions League teams know all about Everton now...Let's do it again next season. Amongst the wins there is a sense of how far Everton have come. Ropey & living on their nerves against Metalist & Larissa moving onto calm mature performances against Zenit, Nurmberg and AZ Alkmaar...but there was also proper old style British blood & thunder efforts like Brann & Fiorentina.

You can't really be disappointed in going out on pens to the 4th place Serie A team...Just hope for many more European adventures like that. As I said to a mate of mine "I am bouncing. That's our Everton, the team that used to f*ck up all the time, wallow around lurching from disaster to disaster with the odd false dawn thrown in....our Everton playing like true heroes when it looked like it was beyond them. Everything you want your footy team to be."

ah well

Everton 2 - 2 Fiorentina (Agg 2-2) Fiorentina win 4-2 on penalties

I spent most of the night praying and ultimately my prayers were answered...but you knew that once it went to penalties Everton were going out. But bollocks to it...Everton did themselves proud, after the first leg we all consoled ourselves with how good a side Fiorentina were, last night we took them to the cleaners. The game ebbed and flowed but really there was never a time when we were on the back foot (I am one of the most pessimistic blues around but the way we took the game to them from the first whistle was so impressive).

Andrew Johnson

We scored at crucial times, both goals came when the game could have been swinging away from us. Whatever happened at the end nothing will ever take that Mikel Arteta moment away from us. The place went bananas, we'd done it. We'd done it in style too, it was a brilliant goal it really was. There were so many other chances too, credit really does need to go to Fiorentina's defenders, they made numerous world class tackles and blocks and still Everton leveled the tie. Forget about the lottery at the end...That was a fantastic night at Goodison Park.

There's nobody better than Mikel Arteta

My only regret about the whole night was Andy Johnson not trying his luck during the second half of extra-time...perhaps a player who doesn't spend every single game running himself into the ground chasing down everything and doing everything he can for the team, perhaps a more selfish player would have gone for glory instead of trying to set-up an easier chance for someone else....perhaps if he had done then we might have got that precious aggregate lead. But who knows.

The only thing we know is that Everton did us proud...last week in Florence perhaps showed our naivete in not being calmer on the ball and retaining possesion when we did have it and not dealing with a fussy referee. That's not the greatest of crimes is it? Fiorentina were like a rabbit in the headlights last night. Everton had a job to do and did it. No complaints from me, even if you'd have told me how it was all going to end I'd have still enjoyed every second of this European run. Everything from McFadden's goal away against Metalist right upto the final whistle and everything in between has been great experience for this team. Fingers crossed we get to do it again next season 'cause it was great fun.

Leon Osman

At the back of my mind, however, there is a tinge of worry shackled to Everton's European adventure...I just don't know if I'll be able to get to these games if Everton relocate out into the sticks. I hope and pray there is some sort of transport solution bundled into the who Kirkby project (There has been absolutely nothing mentioned about it so far). I only live across town and it's a pretty frantic turnaround in the evenings to get to these games...God knows how it'll work if there is another 5 mile long leg to the commute added to it.

Anyway that's for another day...I assume the Yes voters have worked all that out when they made the most important decision in the club's history. Not the time for post mortems and grumbling....Today is all about COYB! It really is a grand old team!

The boys in the royal blue jersey

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Lescott signs....Woohoo

This is great, great news. I real barometer for how things are going at Everton. If Lescott had kept one eye on the big three (and I wouldn't have blamed him if he had because he's been immense for two years now) it would have been a sign that we were punching above our weight.

When players like Lescott, Cahill & Arteta are eager to extend their stay it really does show you that Everton is a good place to be.

Mr Moyes take yet another bow.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Virtual worlds

This is fantastic, MapJack have done a google-esque street map of Chang Mai and this is the grotty looking roadside cafe where we had some of the nicest Thai food ever :

and this is the Libra Guestshouse where we stayed :

Monday, March 10, 2008

*jaw drops in incredulity*

Barmy, truly barmy :

Bitter gobshite Kopite ravings

"the only way Everton can breach the superiority complex we hold over them is by playing more games than ourselves, which tells its own story"

No trace of irony or winking smilies. The delusion levels are off the scale. I am embarresed for all the numerous spot-on rednoses who have to share a stadium with bell-ends like that. I think we can forget once and for all about Evertonians being the only bitter footy fans on Merseyside.

It does however tell a story about how far we've come under Moyes when they have to resort to this in order to make their season look better than it actually is. For the record I am convinced they will still finish above us. Everton are motoring along whereas most of their team is out of form, you have to ask questions of the manager for that but ultimately there is much more to come from them.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

The magic of the cup

It has to be said that this weekend has been ace. Pompey, West Brom, Cardiff and Barnsley in the semi-finals of the cup. Brilliant stuff. Can't wait to see how it pans out. I know Portsmouth must be massive favourites now but surely this weekend has proved that you just can't predict anything in this year's competition.

Back in the League Everton kept up the pressure on liverpool and perhaps more importantly Villa.

Sunderland 0 - 1 Everton

Despite my doom-mongering yesterday's other premiership results were good news for us with City and Blackburn both dropping points...The Stadium of Light was a difficult place to go. Sunderland are hapless away but pretty decent at home. The 1-0 win was another top result. Great to see Johnson getting back in the goals after working so hard for so long and getting nothing in return.

AJ score at Sunderland

AJ score at Sunderland

Saturday, March 08, 2008

back to earth with a bump

Well that was a thoroughly depressing week. Since the highs of the Portsmouth game it was gone steadily more depressing.

It's fari to say Fiorentina gave us a lesson on Thursday....we just didn't get hold of the ball at any stage. The night before our lovable neighbours had rested 4th place from us with a fairly simple 4-0 win over West Ham (Have they declared in true Curbishley style?). The Italians just kept possesion and Everton never really got going...after 20 minutes we were scrapping to get back into the game (and giving away numerous niggly fouls). Only being 2-0 down actually flattered us. We just looked a class or two below the Viola...I know they are a really decent side and bang in form but we are meant to be the same. Oh well, hope we can turn it round next week.

Then the next day we get the news that James Vaughan's knee is giving concern and he's been sent back to the specialist...hope he's okay. It'd be heart-breaking for him if he's going to be dogged by injury.

Today has done our European hopes no good whatsoever. Newcastle capitulated against liverpool and in the cup Utd got mugged by Portsmouth and Chelsea met a Barnsley side full of endevour and belief....fantastic performance. Real FA Cup magic. I couldn't really enjoy any of it because ultimately it means another UEFA place going elsewhere.

However take your hat off to Barnsley....brilliant, brilliant stuff. What footy is all about.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


There are times when being an American would be an advantage...Everton's results at City and at home against Portsmouth were prime examples 'cause the only way to describe them was "Awesome!"

It's brilliant stuff. Make no mistakes this was two very tough games. City's form at Eastlands (as everyone seems to be calling it now) is brilliant whilst Pompey are one of the strongest teams away from home. The fact that Everton just always looked like winning is what's the most impressive. They were clearly the best side in both games (despite what Sven or Redknapp might claim).

We know it can't go on forever but at the moment it's just so good to be a blue, Yakubu is just making it all look so easy. Johnson is doing everything you'd want from in. The midfield is fizzing and the defence is looking very assured.

Next up Fiorentina! It doesn't get any easier does it. Whatever happens now this team are fantastic.