As the new season approaches, which by the way feels like it has been an eternity, and the pre seasons are well underway the expectations of what to expect for the new season start to come to light.
Now as an Everton season ticket holder for the past 20 years I have experienced all sorts of expectations at the start of a season. The lows of yet another Walter Smith season through to the mass spend and Koeman style of football at the start of last season.
But this season the expectations I feel are not fully known, yes they are down from last year clearly but they are not back to the lows of Walter Smith, so I would call this an unknown season which we are heading into.
I am hoping that whatever it turns out to be, it erases last season’s bad memories, and our expectations are exceeded.
I have seen positive reviews and I have seen negative reviews around Marco, but can we really judge him on what he has previously undertaken.
He has won trophies when he had managed on the continent, did ok at Hull with what was already a side which was going down and did well at Watford before, let’s be honest, Everton rocked the boat with him and his squad.
But it is what he does with this squad and can he get a cohesive team together to really challenge the top 6 from day 1. This is in the unknown, so it is hard to judge him at such an early stage in his tenure as Everton manager.
If I did have a concern and that is he adopts zonal marking and the games which I have seen so far our defenders are not good enough for this type of style and there is no on on the posts for corners. Teams can and will exploit this.
Let’s lynch him in December if we are bottom with 0 points!
To be fair he has said on Sky Sports that the next couple of weeks he will be making big decisions in relation to the squad.
There is a lot of talk about the squad and the size of the squad and is it really good enough, again this is a difficult question to really answer as there are some players which have historically been good players.
A casing point here is Klassen who was the captain of Ajax, so how come he has all of a sudden become a player who cannot tie up Tony Hibbert’s boots. This genuinely could be a case that he hasn’t had the right coaching whilst he has been at Everton to fit into the previous systems.
Another player who I thought has played well has been Sandro (although I know he has been getting stick on Twitter) he has put in a shift, played some superb passes and crosses and he just needs to work on his finishing – but as we know about strikers this comes with confidence.
The defence is clearly a concern, out of who I have seen so far in pre-season then Coleman would be the only 100% starter against Wolves in a couple of weeks – there is just no pace.
But it is these players which now need to be coached better by Marco in order to get the best out of them.
Another question is do we still have ‘bad eggs’ in the dressing room, is there still a perceived division, as much as I liked Miralles I always thought that he could be one of the main instigators of a disruptive dressing room.
I could be wrong but if Marco can get this right then we may, stress may, get a team back together again.
The youngsters in the team should also be given the change this year watching Dowell and Robinson at left back have handled themselves well and I would certainly have them as back up players and develop them over the season.
So far zero, but as Marco has mentioned it will be a busy couple of weeks.
I thought it was right to get right to move Rooney and Funes-Mori, both of which were are large wages and don’t think they would have contributed much at all during the season. I think that this left a bad taste in Rooney’s mouth that Marco saw through the sentiment but for the right footballing reasons.
Those players who are unsettled or are unhappy then I wouldn’t begrudge them being moved on at all – Miralles, Bolasie, Martina, Williams.
I would hope that the social media mumbling’s of unhappiness around Lookman and Walcott are just that, social media mumbling’s and that we can keep these 2 and Marco can get the most out of them.
No one really knows who is incoming or out going, regardless if you are in the know, so some of the social media fume has clearly been unjustified at this early stage.
There has been a lot of negativity on social media about how the players are playing in these pre-season games, but let’s remember that these are PRE-SEASON games and nothing more.
Players are getting their fitness up, Marco is understanding who can play where and in what system and where he needs to work on over the next couple of weeks.
There were effectively 2 different teams being played over the weekend against Lille and Porto and the starting line up in a couple of weeks will be neither of these teams.
Some have shone and some haven’t but it’s pre season and nothing more. Some of the online fume, which can be funny, can also be unwarranted.
Don’t get me wrong, I have a good fume just see my twitter feed, but you cannot take anything from these games.
I have a feeling the next 3 weeks will be busy and exciting times for Evertonians and whilst we don’t have expectations going into the new season – I am excited to get back to Goodison and hear Z Cars ring out again.