Reporter notebook: How do you solve a problem like Everton? | Football News

How do you solve a problem like Everton? This is a question that many Everton citizens have been trying to answer for some time.

In February, Farhad Moshiri will celebrate – if that’s the right word – six years as the club’s majority shareholder, and during that time there have been six executives, two football directors and two CEOs, a staff turnover not necessarily conducive to success. , and to date this hypothesis has been confirmed.

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It’s also fair to assume that a billionaire businessman was something Everton Football Club desperately needed – former owner and current president Bill Kenwright carried out an extensive search for the right keeper for his beloved Blues.

Success – in the form of silverware – was not achieved during Kenwright’s tenure, with a lost FA Cup final and a Champions League qualifying season as good as that, but success can be measured in many ways.

Kenwright has openly admitted that he does not have the financial power to take Goodison’s club to the next level, but Everton fans are hungry for trophies, the latest one arrived in 1995, and this is the longest period without silverware in the illustrious. club history.

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti (AP)
Carlo Ancelotti’s 18 months at Goodison Park promised good things but did not materialize

Success has been measured by keeping the club in the Premier League, pushing above its weight on many occasions under the management of David Moyes, and producing a community arm of the club that is rightfully regarded as a beacon of good practice. The club had an identity, a direction, even if in the end it did not see a tangible reward, coveted by its fans.

It would be fair to say that Moshiri’s club today is not the stable and comfortably operated establishment it bought in 2016. Kenwright has only signed two managers into his property after Walter Smith, and has enjoyed a close personal relationship with both Moyes and Roberto. Martinez, but £ 500m has been spent since Moshiri arrived – many believe badly – and league positions in recent years have done little to challenge that conclusion.

Everton has published pictures of the proposed new stadium
Everton are now in the construction phase of their new stadium at Bramley Moore Dock

However, comfortable and stable would never have satisfied a fan base that had seen a team win two European titles and trophies during the mid-eighties and many more before.

The fact that Moshiri has invested so much money in the club is to be applauded. He is also overseeing the construction of an exciting and impressive 52,000-seat stadium on Liverpool’s waterfront and has delivered a “Hollywood Manager” in the form of Carlo Ancelotti.

Indeed, he has appointed different types of managers, but it seems that this is where the problems that the club is currently facing have arisen.

Everton football director Marcel Brands in the stands during the Premier League match at Goodison Park, Liverpool
Marcel Brands recently stepped down from his role as Everton’s football manager

A football director and manager structure did not work, the financial outlay far exceeded the level of success it achieved, while both Steve Walsh and Marcel Brands left the club with a very firm spotlight on recruiting and a lot of criticism. to the process and the results it provided.

However, when investigated further, the process can be accused of having a number of flaws; the suggestion is that a number of those incoming players were a mixture of choices from many different people, not always appealing to all concerned, and if that is the case then that would suggest blurry lines of responsibility. It’s never a good thing: it leads to a lack of accountability which in turn can lead to opportunism and / or demotivation.

In the past, player signing was a matter for the president and manager, but this is no longer the case and it appears this system has created the perfect storm, with its disastrous effect compounded by other contributing factors.

Trying to sell or switch to the ones that didn’t work – and there have been some – has been problematic and costly. This in turn has limited the club’s purchasing power with issues related to profit and sustainability regulations and thus the downward spiral continues. Then this results in the pitch often having a mismatch and a variety of unhappy players.

Everton manager Rafael Benitez during the Premier League match at Liverpool's Goodison Park.  Image date: Saturday October 23, 2021.
Mixed results on the pitch since the appointment of Rafa Benitez as manager in the summer

Everton have announced a review of the football structure after Brands’ departure and this must be an opportunity for the club to regroup and agree on a system that everyone can live with, and everyone can follow, from owner on down. It is vital that this happens as the status quo cannot be sustainable in the long or even in the short term

About 27 years without a trophy is not acceptable in a club which, when the Premier League began, was proudly up there with the most success in England as a strong and respected member of the original ‘Top Four’.

I am convinced that everyone at the club wants it to be successful. Farhad Moshiri has enjoyed a savior relationship with Everton fans, but that really risks getting lost if a clearer and more defined strategy isn’t evident in the future. This also needs to be communicated in a meaningful and personal way to those long-suffering supporters.

Now is the time for unity and not for division, for the challenge not for surrender and for leadership not for irresolution.

This once bulwark of the English game cannot collapse further from the top table. He has the means, the desire and the following to be great again … if the person running it can find a way to make it work.

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