Everton have a clear future under Carlo Ancelotti

Of course Everton have denied reports that Barcelona came after Richarlison last week as the transfer window closed. The Spanish champions had reportedly bid 100m euros on the Brazilian which Everton had rejected immediately.

If it was true then the club would have spoken to club manager Carlo Ancelotti, and he was having none of it. He was asked in a press conference and it was very clear that Richarlison is not for sale. This will be refreshing news for a club like Everton who are so used to losing their best players. Ancelotti even stated that the current team can be built around the talents of the Brazilian and that he is here to stay. And so he should  be, by all accounts he only signed an extended contract in December which would see him at the club until 2024.

These are encouraging times for Everton. When Ancelotti arrived they were flirting with relegation, now they are above a team like Arsenal and in 9th place, form is good and Everton are getting the results.

This past weekend also showed great mental strength as the club came back from 2-0 down against Watford who are fighting relegation themselves to win 3-2 after a 90th minute Theo Walcott goal.

The atmosphere has really shifted at the club and there is a feel good momentum not seen since Roberto Martinez’s first season here and not as big since David Moyes first arrived on the scene almost 20 years ago. The fact that Everton have a name like Ancelotti in the dug out is still pinch yourself stuff from an Everton fans perspective. They might be seen in the same light as a team like West Ham, yet it is the Hammers living in the past having appointed Moyes who is now clearly past his best. Everton have moved on and they boast a better manager than a lot of clubs in the Premier League now, they decided to take that huge leap and whatever they are paying Ancelotti he is clearly worth it.

After disappointly going out of the FA Cup Everton’s season in effect ended, but it also feels like there is a new dawn for the club. What will be the clubs objective for the remainder of the season? Glancing at the league table they are just one win from 6th place and they could be aiming for a points total of 60. That could well ensure 6th and a possible Europa League place which would be a step in the right direction.

Also there was heartwarming news for the club who have confirmed that Andre Gomes will return after his horrific injury. He should be available for the clubs game away to Arsenal in three weeks time. There is a long road to go for both Gomes and Everton but at the moment things are certainly looking up.

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Can Everton rise to the challenge after Gomes’ horrific injury?

For a club that couldn’t buy a win and seeing one of your regular players in Andre Gomes receive an horrific injury was just the icing on a cake that no one wants to eat. It’s fair to say that it’s been a tough opening campaign for Everton football club, but could the injury to Gomes which will almost definitely see the player miss the rest of the season actually give Everton an extra gear?

The players will be feeling distraught about what has happened to Gomes, and when he injured his ankle in what was a freak accident against Tottenham, we saw a different character to this Everton side, one of determination not arguably seen since Roberto Martinez’s first season in charge of the club. The club suddenly forced themselves into the game and 1-0 down they searched for and got the equaliser through a thumping Cenk Tosun header.

This past weekend was another huge game for Everton away to Southampton. On paper one could have made Everton the favourites given that Southampton had come into the game conceding 14 goals in their last 3 competitive matches, but with Everton you just never know. They took the lead early on but as the game continued Southampton got back into it and then Danny Ings ex-Liverpool player equalised and that seemed to be it for the Toffees. In normal circumstances their confidence would have evaporated but something different happened at the weekend and a team who are supposed to be low on confidence took the game by the neck and scored again through Richarlison to win 2-1.

The victory was only Everton’s 4th of the season and 2nd in 10 matches and lifted the club to 15th place with 14 points, 6 points from the bottom three. Manager Marco Silva has been under pressure to keep his job but it does seem that every time his P45 is being prepared his side manage to get a win. He will be hoping that Gomes can be some sort of lasting influence on the club- do it for Gomes not only in the league but in the Carabao Cup where Everton have reached the quarter finals.

Everton’s next game is against Norwich who have been very poor and the club will be favourites to win that game at home and win they must because December will be their hardest month of the season. As Christmas comes Everton will have to play the likes of Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, and could well end up with 0 points.

Can Silva turn on the magic once more or is his job back on the line?

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Everton could struggle next season in the Premier League with a lack of signings


Everton are a team who could have in theory been relegated a few times in the last 20 years and yet they remain one of the longest serving clubs in top flight history in England. They have been consistently in the top league for almost 70 years and that says a lot.

Under coach Marco Silva no one is expecting the club to be relegated next season, they have a quality team but the problem is that the club have not been very active in the transfer market, and there is just 30 days to go until the window slams shut.

Everton have only brought in 3 new players and one of them was from the academy in promising defender Sebastian Kristensen who has also been playing for Danish side Lyngby.

The other player is Jonas Lossl a goal keeper who was with Huddersfield who were of course relegated last season and he will be clearly seen as a back up to Jordan Pickford. The one transfer everyone has been focused on is Andre Gomes, who was on loan at the club last season. Now Everton have made that move permanent after sealing a deal with Barcelona in the region of £22m. That’s all very well but a player who was already at the club is hardly an exciting buy.

Everton really need to bolster their squad with 2 or 3 more quality signings and given the TV money involved with football now fans should expect this. The problem for Everton of course is that they are looking to move away from Goodison Park and are probably making that a number 1 concern when it comes to their finances. Just look at how it has affected both Arsenal and Tottenham when trying to buy players, Tottenham went 2 windows with no buys. It’s unsure if a club like Everton could afford to do that.

Next season will be okay for Everton but it is a question of what do the team want? Do they want to improve on last season, reach the Europa League? Right now with their transfer policy all the team needs is a key injury to the likes of Sigurdssson or Richarlison and they could get into trouble if they have not brought in any quality. At best Everton could be finishing mid table and that would signal a step backwards.

The long suffering fans should expect more investment whether they will get it is quite another thing.

Andre Gomes fills the Arteta void for Everton

Andre Gomes Everton Barcelona Premier League

Seven years after Mikel Arteta left Everton for Arsenal they may have finally found his replacement. Andre Gomes has filled a hole that the Blues have been looking to fill for the best part of a decade.

Dubbed the best little Spaniard we know by an adoring Goodison Park faithful, Arteta was an undisputed star during his time on Merseyside. Ask anyone to rank the club’s best ever signings and he is always towards the top of the list.

Fleet of foot with an eye for a pass and a goal, he finished the 2006-07 campaign with nine goals in 35 league games, no club in the Premier League has ever spent £2 million better. Man of the match awards were a regular occurrence as far as Arteta was concerned. Continue reading

What can Everton expect from Mina and Gomes?

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Here we are in the middle of October, and still Everton supporters are yet to see either Yerry Mina or Andre Gomes pull on the shirt.

Injury problems have dogged the two players signed from Barcelona, but the current international break appears to be a blessing.

With the pair almost back to match fitness and having taken part in a behind-closed-doors friendly, the fortnight without a league game is being used wisely in order that they’ll be available for selection for the match against Crystal Palace. Continue reading

Deadline Day magic: Assessing Everton’s 2018 transfer window

Yerry Mina

Sometime last week, the transfer window was looking like being something of a disaster for Everton Football Club.

The majority of their work had been reducing the wage bill and moving on those deemed not good enough.

Wayne Rooney was the biggest departure, shipped off to MLS for the final part of his career after a less than glorious one-year return to his boyhood club.

Rooney provided some of the best moments of last season but the boy who up Goodison Park all those years ago was now a man struggling to live up to the standards he had set over his career.

Continue reading

Wonderful deadline day for Everton shows board’s ambition

bernardThe transfer deadline has closed for Premier League clubs, and of all the clubs in the English top flight it could well be argued that Everton fans enjoyed the best deadline day of the lot. Signing not one, but three players in the space of 10 minutes saw some top quality players arriving at Goodison Park. Some arrived on permanent deals while others were loans, but in all the Toffees secured the services of the likes of Yerry Mina and Andre Gomes from Barcelona, Bernard from Shakhtar Donetsk and by the looks of things Kurt Zouma will be arriving on Merseyside on a loan deal as well. Mina in particular is a real coup for the club, as he was also interesting Man Utd – Everton have done very well.

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Barcelona, please get rid of Deulofeu!

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Though Barcelona’s transfer business seems to be centred on whether they can secure Antoine Greizmann from Atletico Madrid, sporting director Robert Fernandez has an awful lot more work to do in clearing the decks.

It appears that Douglas (yes he’s still a Barcelona player!), Aleix Vidal, Paco Alcácer and Andre Gomes will be given their P45’s at the very least this summer, but other fringe players could also be part of a mass clearout.

One of those is Gerard Deulofeu.

The winger was let go once before, on loan to Everton and then, to his surprise and disgust, to Sevilla. Continue reading

Barcelona set for squad rotation in April


Barcelona remain on course to win the treble of La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League titles this season, but manager Ernesto Valverde will need to do some tinkering.

The Catalans have won the treble three times before, in 1958-59, and famously under Pep Guardiola in 2008-09, and again under Luis Enrique in 2014-15.

However given the tame predictions of how they would fare under Valverde this season, at the start of the campaign, this season could be the biggest achievement yet.

The former Athletic Bilbao boss has diligently redeveloped Barcelona’s tactical approach, as their Golden Generation enters their thirties, and a need for new blood emerges.

Continue reading

Rating the ten most expensive summer signings so far

arsene wenger

The summer transfer market is just passed halfway, as it started on July 1 and ends on August 31. Some teams have made big moves, while others have lost star players and even others have done little to nothing.

Therefore, let’s rate the ten most expensive summer signings so far!

1. Gonzalo Higuain: from Napoli to Juventus – €90 million

Is it an overpay? Yes. But is it a massive deal for Juventus? Definitely yes. Higuain scored a record 36 goals in Serie A last season and joins the club that has won the last five Italian championships. The Old Lady weaken Napoli, their biggest rival from last season and finally feature a world class striker again.

Rating: A-

2. Leroy Sane: from Schalke 04 to Man City – €50m

The Citizens brought in Nolito to an already established wing attack, featuring the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Jesus Navas, David Silva and Raheem Sterling. The transfer of Sane makes sense in regard to the future, but spending a massive amount on a 20-year-old that is primed to ride the bench most of the season? For now, not convincing.

Rating: C+

3. Granit Xhaka: from Borussia Mönchengladbach to Arsenal – €45m

Arsenal have made just one big signing this summer but it was a good one. Xhaka will give the Gunners’ midfield much more quality, stability and versatility. The Swiss international won’t rock the stats sheet but he’ll do his job, work hard, and fire his team-mates up. His fee was pretty heavy but all in all, great business by Arsenal.

Rating: B+

4. Henrikh Mkhitaryan: from Borussia Dortmund to Man United – €42m

Another Bundesliga player making the switch to the Premier League. This might be the deal of the summer transfer market so far, as Mkhitaryan is considered one of the best playmakers in the game today and United were in dire need of one. Simple.

Rating: A

5. Sadio Mane: from Southampton to Liverpool – €41.2m

Liverpool have been lagging behind a bit when it comes to making big moves this summer. However, they did sign Mane from the Saints for a hefty transfer fee. Too hefty. The winger registered two fine seasons at Southampton but that doesn’t justify the Reds overpaying massively for him. Mane might work out at Anfield, but his price tag will always be too big.

Rating: C

6. Michy Batshuayi: from Marseille to Chelsea – €39m

Chelsea needed young blood upfront and struck a big deal with Marseille for Batshuayi, who impressed many during his two seasons in Ligue 1. There’s a feeling that the Belgium international could be gold at Stamford Bridge due to his warrior mentality, but €39m for a player that has started just one full season at Marseille? Big price for potential.

Rating: B-

7. Mats Hummels: from Borussia Dortmund to Bayern – €38m

When Bayern do business on the transfer market, they do it right on almost every ocassion. Getting Hummels, one of the best defenders in the world, back from Borussia Dortmund will help them retain their mega status in European football. The fee was pretty large but Hummels is one of the few defenders that are able to justify it.

Rating: A

8. Eric Bailly: from Villarreal to Man United – €38m

Talking about a defender that can’t justify spending €38m is… Bailly goes down as Jose Mourinho’s first signing in charge of Manchester United but one that really didn’t make any sense. Sure, the Red Devils needed defensive help but this massive amount for a 22-year-old from Villarreal? Yikes!

Rating: D

9. N’Golo Kante: from Leicester to Chelsea – €35.8m

Chelsea endured their worst season in years and needed reinforcements, especially on the defensive end. The Blues were able to land surprise star Kante from champions Leicester City for a reasonable price, beating the likes of Real Madrid and Juventus in the process. Kante gives Antonio Conte all the skills he needs from a defensive midfielder.

Rating: B+

10. Andre Gomes: from Valencia to Barcelona – €35m

Barcelona were in need of some fresh blood and got more than one talented young gun this summer. They paid the biggest fee for Gomes, a player that disappointed at Euro 2016 and was just decent at Valencia. The 22-year-old could develop into a valuable player with the Blaugrana but that’s more hope than reality at the moment.

Rating: C