By Ian Mills
Another disappointing game at Watford with a 1-0 defeat, what are your views on the game?
As above, disappointing. After a solid performance against Manchester City with energy and fight, we see changes again with Calvert Lewin and Bernard dropped for Tosun and Sigurddson. From the team news it seemed to me be an attempt to shoe Sigurddson into the team albeit starting on the left wing and that seemed to limit us until we changed things and midway through the 1st half and became more central. The first half is better best forgotten in terms of an actual memorable football match but at HT we had arguably done well. The second half we unravelled for the first 20 minutes and were outfought for every ball. It’s time like this it’s clear we are missing a leader or 2 on the pitch and until that’s addressed it’s going to be a real flaw in this side. This spell ultimately caused our downfall with another cross in the box being flashed across to the back post and our Achilles heel struck. Tosun and Lewin missed good chances to equalise but as above until we address the lack of fight and not being tempted to shoe horn different players into the team then I can’t see us picking up a lot more points, especially with our run in!
Gylfi Sigurddson has been amongst the debate again this week. An article was circulated showing his favourable stats as one of the better creative players in the league, yet he is still coming in for criticism. Where do you stand on him?
Sigurddson in my eyes has become a little bit of a Lukaku. The stats always back him up despite his obvious flaws. Lukaku’s flaws of not being a team player or showing up in important games were blinded by his goal tally over the season whilst Sigurdsson’s flaws of seemingly not effecting games with big moments (which could be unfairly down to his price tag) as other team’s players seem to do are masked by stats such as we seen this week in that he does continually try to create chances in this side and perhaps the lack of a recognised number 9 is hurting more. I think the truth lies somewhere in between. I have watched games against lesser opposition that I’d argue have been crying out for him to take the game by the scruff of the neck and be the match winner & also watched games were I’ve thought if only we had a Saha or Lukaku in front of him. Should we have expected more? Yes. Is he in need of help to get the best out of him? Also yes.
Another person coming in for criticism is manager Marco Silva. Some sections of the media are saying he’s on borrowed time. Would it be wrong to dismiss the manager after only 9 months in the job?
Again similar to Sigurddson you have to look at it from a balanced point of view, there are 2 sides to the argument. Everton should absolutely not be scared of how the media react should it become time to move on from Marco Silva. If we lose the next 2 games and / or it’s apparent we are now nervously looking over our shoulder then I would say the club need to act. The other side of the argument is we all knew how big a job the next manager to replace Sam Allardyce would have. He’d have to create a whole new style of playing, bring in new blood and also dispel of 3 previous managers left overs, that shouldn’t be forgotten. My personal problem with Silva at the minute, and what will be his demise is he is seemingly so set on this formation of 4-2-3-1 and the way of playing it that is now becoming a real problem in how we not only defend as a team, but attack. The past 2 games he changed it to a 4-3-3 which gives me hope he has recognised it isn’t working but both times the traits of slow build up, playing it from the back and the striker being isolated has still been obvious. Especially with the next 2 games at a ‘fighting for their lives’ Cardiff City and a Merseyside derby he really needs to think about adjusting this approach, this coupled with the fact that he seemingly doesn’t think he can drop his own players to give them a much needed breather will be what loses him his job if he can’t adjust.
So if he does go, what / who then?
Time dependant. If he goes in the summer then it will be down to the season not finishing very well but us not being in any real danger. That will see another manager who plays the way Marcel Brands wants to play and a young attacking coach. Think Paulo Fonseca, Eddie Howe or Javi Gracia. If the board press the panic button this season due to us being dragged into a fight, then that type of coach/plan will be put on hold whilst we fight our way out. David Unsworth won’t get another go under Moshiri, Sam Allardyce certainly would be a media disaster and that leaves us with David Moyes. Don’t mistake that with me wanting Moyes back, but if we are 7 pts off the relegation battle with the fixtures we have left in April, I could certainly see Moyes coming in short term to steer us away. Here’s hoping it doesn’t get that far!