Joined: 08 Dec 2017
|Posted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:32 am Post subject: nothing to lose except an Everton future
|Since becoming Everton’s majority shareholder in 2016, Farhad Moshiri has developed a reputation for being a man who does not understand that all publicity is not necessarily good publicity. This has been seen through his often toe-curling briefings to Sky Sports’ Jim White and once again at Everton’s AGM on Tuesday when the Iranian-born businessman claimed Romelu Lukaku rejected a contract with the club last summer because “he had a voodoo”. Lukaku, who is Catholic and not prone to making career decisions based on the advice of religious cults, is understandably considering legal action.
It was a crass choice of words on Moshiri’s part but in regards to Everton’s on-pitch fortunes, not the most significant thing he said to shareholders gathered at Liverpool’s Philharmonic Hall. Arguably that was his response when asked how far Sam Allardyce can take the club, having been appointed manager in November. “We’ll have to wait and see,” Moshiri said. Such a clipped, less-than-enthusiastic reply felt telling.
To some extent there is nothing new here. Allardyce signed an 18-month contract as Ronald Koeman’s successor and, as such, it was obvious how his appointment was viewed by those who hired him, namely Moshiri and Everton’s chairman, Bill Kenwright: a short-term firefighter tasked with pulling the club out of relegation trouble. Almost two months on that objective has pretty much been achieved – before facing Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley on Saturday, Everton sit ninth and are unlikely to go down.
The question now is: what next? Following last week’s FA Cup third-round defeat by Liverpool, the season is in effect over for the blue half of Merseyside. They are out of Europe, out of both domestic cups and, starting http://www.officialseahawksfootball.com/YOUTH+GEORGE+FANT+JERSEY with Tottenham, have 16 further league fixtures to complete. It is either a case of simply getting through them or using each to build for the future. For all concerned, and Allardyce in particular, it would make sense to focus Drew Storen Womens Jersey on the latter.
The 63-year-old has long spoken about how he feels he has been unfairly pigeonholed as a manager; an overly cautious tactician whose style of play is more meat and potatoes than tiki-taka. Well, here he is now, at the biggest club job of a managerial career spanning more than 20 years, and realistically the only way he is going to last beyond this campaign is by showing he is more than his reputation suggests. Sadly for Allardyce, Opta’s statistics show that during his Everton tenure, he has been just that.
After eight Premier League games under Allardyce, Everton’s goals-per-game ratio stands at 1.0, only a marginal increase on that under Koeman (0., lower than it was under caretaker manager David Unsworth (2.0) and lower than the teams that sit either side of them in the table – Leicester City (1.5) and Watford (1.4).
In comparison to Koeman and Unsworth, Allardyce’s Everton are also down on shots per game and shots on target per game (7.3 and http://www.authenticcanadienshop.com/authentic-41-paul-byron-jersey.html 2.6 respectively). They are also making fewer passes per game under the former England manager compared with Koeman specifically (368 compared with 430) and enjoying fewer touches in the opposition box per game overall (13 compared Chuck Klein Jersey with 19 under Koeman and 16 under Unsworth).
Everton have improved defensively, now conceding 0.8 goals per game compared with 2.0 under both Koeman and Unsworth, and are working harder, covering 112.2km per game compared with 109.5km under Koeman and 111.5km under Unsworth. But all that proves is that while Allardyce has achieved his first objective of making Everton harder to beat, he has yet to show he has what it takes to progress the club further than that.
“Part of this is to do with the make-up of a poorly balanced squad– nobody to set the tempo of play, for example,” says Paddy Boyland, contributor to the influential Everton podcast, The Blue Room. “Saying that, Ted Ginn Jr Jersey there have been occasions when Allardyce could have been bolder. Picking three defensive midfielders at Bournemouth springs to mind in that regard.