What is going on at Everton FC? by Owen Parkes


For something a little bit different, questions have been asked to @owenparkes123 on twitter and including them all, this is going to be a piece that highlights every issue, from zonal marking to manager situation.

Since last Saturday, Everton football club is like the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about. This season was going to be the season it was all supposed to be different for Everton. With an alleged good summer of transfer business again and Marco Silva seemingly having got to grips with the club, then a top six finish beckoned. Now, with the lack of any sort of consistent quality in the Premier League, Everton can still do just that. However it is looking unlikely for me that Marco Silva is going to be at Everton long term.

The rumours this week say he has got ‘three games to save his job,’ but surely that promise gets broken if West Ham come down to Goodison next week and win? Either way, hope is not completely lost for Marco Silva yet, there is ashes that can be stoked to
restart his Everton career because there is no appetite amongst boardroom level to change the manager, but results could force their hand.

Are players not playing to the same level they reached last season or is it all Marco Silva’s fault?

No one at Everton is blame free this season. Marco Silva has made mistakes and it is his future that is only, in the immediate future is up for negotiation, but irresponsibility runs through the club. Marco Silva is known best as a really good coach and a really good man manager. All of the players he has played under have had nothing but good words about Silva which in turn shows he makes players better. His tactics are not the best, however, as he shows inability to want to change system, style or personnel at crucial times.

However, even with all this being said, the players are not playing to the same level they did especially at the end of last season and no one takes responsibility on the pitch
and that has been the way since David Moyes left the football club.

Pickford? So far, average, has not improved on last season with only two clean sheets so far. Coleman? Has been incredibly poor, his defending has slumped to new lows this season. Keane and Mina? Keane has had a bad start to the season without Kurt Zouma but Yerry Mina has probably been Everton’s best player. Lucas Digne? Still of a high standard but not reached his peak. Schneiderlin? Poor. Gomes? In and out, mostly been unfit, Delph? Not a great signing,, plays very much like everyone else. Sigurdsson needs to be dropped, Richarlison has been inconsistent, Bernard and Iwobi have been doing well but
always seem the first to be dropped and Calvert-Lewin has been inconsistent whilst Moise Kean is still adapting to the league. So therefore, it would have to be a bit of both, but it is not all the fault of Marco Silva at all.

Formations for Saturday and beyond? When to chuck Gordon in, Lewis Gibson maybe too. What will we do when we hire Alan Pardew?

Firstly, 4-2-3-1 does not work at all. The formation that best suits this Everton side is 4-3-3. Four defenders, with two progressive fullbacks who press high up the pitch, a three in midfield, no necessarily with an ‘attacking midfielder,’ but three workmanlike, energetic midfielders, and a three up front, narrow and can force the opposition back. Pickford, Sidibe, Keane, Mina, Digne, Gomes, Delph, Davies, Richarlison, Kean, Bernard, is how it would work, in practice.

Also, a 4-4-2 would not be a bad idea. If Marco Silva wants to get results that buy him some more time and wants a short term fix, he should take a leaf out of his opponent last Saturday’s book. A narrow 4-4-2 would mean that Everton can defend in a low block forcing teams out wide where Keane and Mina can deal with balls into the box and counter attack with quick transitions to catch the opposition off guard.

Everton would not enjoy much of the ball, but it would be a ‘back to basics’ system that gets us up the league. Pickford, Sidibe, Keane, Mina, Digne, Iwobi, Gomes, Delph, Bernard, Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison, is how this would come to fruition. This, for sure, is not aesthetically pleasing for those who prefer to play in a open way, but style is irrelevant when you are 18th in the Premier League after the second international break is it? Anthony Gordon and Lewis Gibson should be on the bench for the Watford game in the Carabao Cup, with a view to bringing them on with half an hour to go.

As for Alan Pardew, well yeah, Alan Pardew. If you dare, Everton.

What are your thoughts on the manager situation?

Last Saturday broke me. I hadn’t felt like this about the club since Ronald Koeman was manager. Sam Allardyce did not even take me to them new lows. Marco Silva will lose his job as Everton boss sooner rather than later. It feels like a point of no turning back no for Silva. Anyone who has followed me on here knows I like Marco. I still do and I think he’s a good coach but he’s not a good enough manager to influence games. Whilst he’s Everton manager I will get behind him of course but I don’t have any faith in him turning it around. Sheffield United was my turning point. Other people will have their respective moments. With Koeman it was Atalanta away. With Sam Allardyce it was Arsenal away. With Roberto Martinez it was Kiev away and then later on Swansea at home in the third season. All them moments to me felt like no return moments. Sheffield United felt like no return with Silva but Saturday confirmed that for me. And for all them, it’s been their own doing.

Stubbornness, no will to change. The system is predictable and simply boring. 4231 is so laboured and workaday it is unbelievable. Marco Silva’s Everton is boring, predictable, scared, fallible and an overall poor side with decent footballers but no team spirit. Marco Silva will lose his job, whether it be now or at the end of the season.

What next?

For me, the next Everton manager SHOULD be Rafa Benitez. The man is top drawer isn’t he. He has won the Champions League, La Liga, the Europa League and a load of other trophies. But I think his greatest achievement to date was what he did at Newcastle. He took a fractured club under Steve McClaren and gave them purpose. He kept them up twice, once with a top ten finish and won the Championship. All on zero money. I think he’s a class manager and would walk over broken glass from China to manage Everton.

I would also have Jose Mourinho. Speaks for himself but if either of them two didn’t fancy it I would then appoint Sean Dyche. No to Moyes, Arteta, Blanc, Ten Hag, Howe, Hutter and Gracia.

Thank you for the questions and let me know if this is something you would like to see more often.


Owen Parkes