January 14, 2023. Everton, eighteenth in the Premier League, receives Southampton, dead last in the championship. A crucial meeting in the fight for maintenance which is played out at Goodison Park where not everyone is welcome, since the leaders of Toffees have received the order not to come to the stadium for security reasons. Unheard of in the history of this historic club. “We can no longer tolerate club owner Farhad Moshiri failing to address the glaring leadership deficiencies at chairman, board and executive level,” justifies the NSNOW, a group of supporters of the club.
The Ancelotti era and a failed succession
However, nothing could have predicted this three years ago. In December 2019, Carlo Ancelotti took over the reins of Everton, following the dismissal of Portuguese Marco Silva. In his early days, the current Real Madrid manager had ambitious plans for the club. “The Champions League is the long-term goal, then declared Carlo Ancelotti during his induction press conference. Rien n’est impossible. »After half a season where the Italian technician managed to keep the English club away from the red zone, Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s band finished twelfth. The following exercise began with a bang, and the club created in 1878 even took the lead in the Premier League for several days before finding itself second at the dawn of 2021. Unfortunately, Ancelotti and his family experienced a second game. difficult season and with only three wins in the last twelve league games, their hopes of qualifying for European competition are definitely buried.
In the wake of the departure of the coach who has won the most European competitions, returned to Real Madrid, Everton welcomes another technician with a well-stocked CV on the European level: Rafael Benítez. Famous for his spell at arch-rivals Liverpool, the Spaniard is also infamous for calling Everton a « petit club » when he was leading the Reds. “Appointing a manager the fans already hate, who does that? It’s turning a deaf ear, said writer Jim Keoghan, a fan of Toffees and author of numerous football books,Associated Press. Because at Everton, although we are Evertonians, we are also defined by our hatred of Liverpool. It’s an important part of who we are.» The former Libero’s tenure finally ended in January 2022. His successor, a certain Frank Lampard, didn’t enjoy much more success. While he had ensured the maintenance of the team last season, the ex-star of the Blues was dropped from her role last January. It is now the Englishman Sean Dyche, renowned for his kick and rushwho has been on a commando mission for over a month to save the club.
More money for less results
However, the current situation is not just down to poor coaching choices following Ancelotti’s departure. To better understand where Everton are, we have to go back a little further. Shortly before the start of spring 2016, the Anglo-Iranian billionaire Farhad Moshiri bought 49.9% of the club’s shares and promised to make additional funds available for the transfer period. An influx of money which contrasted with the mode of operation of yesteryear Toffees. “Before his arrival [celle de Farhad Moshiri], the club was known for doing things right. David Moyes (Everton coach from 2002 to 2013, editor’s note) were doing great signings, getting great deals, and Everton were the best of the rest, Keoghan analysis in the columns of theAssociated Press. We thought money was lacking at Everton. We thought the money would come in and turn the best of the rest into an elite club. It was a disaster, really. »
Transfer window after transfer window, poor recruitment strategies with many casting errors will gradually weigh down the club. Excessive spending, for a return that leaves something to be desired, accumulates: 50 million for Gylfi Sigurdsson, 29 million for Yannick Bolasie, 27 for Davy Klaassen, 25 for Jean-Philippe Gbamin… “It’s like when someone wins the lottery and you hear these stories years later and they just slammed the money into golden houses, says Keoghan. It feels like Everton were overwhelmed with money and didn’t know what to do with it. » Since Moshiri’s arrival, there have been eight different coaches in seven years, which has also given the club instability.
At the dawn of a new stadium, the Everton Stadium, which should see the light of day for the start of the 2024-2025 season, a descent would be a considerable drama for the club, present in the first division since 1954. Out of 124 seasons , THE Toffees have played 120 in the top flight, which is an England record. Less than three months from the end of this exercise, England’s worst attack (17 goals scored) is now eighteenth. With a trip this Sunday to Nottingham Forest, the team of the eternal Séamus Coleman would be well advised to collect points there. Just to get out of the relegation zone and make the fans forget, for a week, the management’s failed choices.
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