Tag: Everton

The 200% Pre-Season Previews: Everton

Plus ca change. It has, in recent seasons, got to the point at which we could set our watches by the undulations of Evertons season. Pre-Season grumpiness at a relative lack of activity in the transfer market, followed by a slow start to the season during which the a feeling of discontent hangs heavy in the air over Goodison Park and a strong second half to the season which sees the club finish in, all things considered, a relatively healthy position. This time last year, we spoke of this club with an air of weary resignation, a feeling that here was a club that was not reaching its potential through a lack of investment in its playing staff. That feeling remains the same this summer, but with the club not having suffered anything quite as traumatic – yet – as last summers loss of Mikel Arteta to Arsenal, there is, perhaps, a greater feeling of serenity surrounding the clubs support than there was twelve months ago. Another part of this has been the exceptional form of Nikica Jalevic, whose form last season turned out to be the more pleasant surprises of their season. Jalevic has turned heads but will almost certainly start the new season at Goodison Park, and the arrival of a player at the club who is capable of scratching the itch that supporters have for a...

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Match Of The Past: Everton

Everton Football Club is one of English footballs great institutions. Founder members of the Football League in 1888, they are second only to Arsenal in terms of their unbroken record in the top flight – they will celebrate their sixtieth consecutive season next year – and have won a clutch of trophies along the way as well. For a look back into their archive, we’re going to take in one defeat but three wins and one of the greatest matches in the entire history of the FA Cup. First up is a match from September 1969 against newly-promoted Derby County. Derby went on to win this match, but Everton ended the 1969/70 season as the champions of England. We’re then fast-forwarding to arguably the clubs greatest ever season. In 1984, the club had won the FA Cup and this qualified them for the following years European Cup Winners Cup. In the semi-finals they were drawn against Bayern Munich and, after drawing 0-0 in the first leg in the Olympic Stadium, returned to Goodison Park to play out one of the greatest nights in the entire history of the club in the second leg. Meanwhile in the league, they had become serious championship challengers, and one performance on Match Of The Day against Sunderland definitively marked out their credentials. For our final two Everton matches, we’re skipping forward to the...

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100 Owners: No.100 – John Houlding (Everton & Liverpool)

There is a point of view held by some that the olden days were better and somehow purer than the world that we live in today. Considering the twenty-four saturation news coverage that football entertains these days, this is perhaps unsurprising. Every tiny story can be blown up out of all proportion, and every word that anybody even remotely connected to the game utters is forensically analysed and interpreted in as many different ways as conceivable. For many years, however, the game remained largely invisible to all those that didn’t attend matches, and the political manoeuvring that took place behind the scenes was veiled in even greater secrecy. For the first of our century of profiles, we’re reaching back to a time before television and cinema, to the frenetic and frequently chaotic days that saw the introduction of the professionalism of football in England. St. Domingo’s FC was founded, as so many of our clubs were, as the off-shoot of a church – in this case, a Methodist church. They played their formative years on an open pitch on Stanley Park in Liverpool – which now separates Goodison Park from Anfield – where they attracted the attention of a local brewer whose house backed onto the park, John Houlding. Within four years, the club was considering turning professional and required an enclosed ground of its own if it was to...

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The 2012 FA Cup Semi-Finals: Everton 1-2 Liverpool

Shortly before 12.45 this afternoon at Wembley Stadium almost ninety thousand people fell silent in memory of the Hillsborough disaster, which happened twenty-three years ago this weekend. It was a moment to bring a lump to the throat, a moment to pause and reflect upon the lives and deaths of ninety-six people, of whom seventy-seven were under the age of thirty years old at the time that they died. It was a moment to cast aside club loyalties, and to wish silently for justice for these people and their relatives. Yet with the end of the minute’s silence came a familiar roar. For all the commemoration today, this afternoon was about the twenty-first century, the fraternal rivalry between Liverpool and Everton and the conclusion of what has been, in various idiosyncratic ways, a remarkable season for both of these clubs. In amongst the traditions and the history surrounding this afternoons match, however, certain prosaic truths about the game of football remain as constant as the laws of physics and not very far from the top of that list are the words, “Get rid of it!”. Twenty-four minutes into this afternoon’s match, that basic rule went out of the window, as far as Liverpool’s defence was concerned. It had been a quiet opening to the match, with both times feeling each other out, prodding and poking for a weakness at...

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The Spectre Of Goalline Technology Reappears

Over the weekend, the debate over goalline technology resurfaced as Queens Park Rangers defender Clint Hill’s header against Bolton Wanderers clearly crossed the line with assistant referee Bob Pollock claiming he was unable to see due to a Bolton defender on the line blocking his view. Hot on the heels of the International Football Association Board’s (IFAB) announcement that they were committed to accepting technology, and that they would be reviewing two systems in the summer. It now seems inevitable that goalline technology will be introduced to football sooner rather than later, and many media outlets were unable to contain their glee at this development, with one sportswriter on Sky Sports Sunday Supplement claiming that it was football’s embarrassment that it had so far resisted the introduction of technology, although like the rest of the pro-technology lobby, no-one comes up with an answer to some of the logistical questions raised here two years ago. But does the media’s agenda just lie with wanting to improving the game, or is there more to it? The rolling report on the incident on Sky Sports News was revealing. As well as a plea from Sky Sports’ main analyser Gary Neville saying that technology has to come in because of the sheer number of times these incidents have decided championships and relegations, and how replays can give an instant decision on whether the...

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