Everton Season in Review: Part 2By: Brian | May 26th, 2011
Once again we have a post from a new writer here on Everton Offside. Taylor comes to us from the US and his experience writing for one of the oldest college newspapers in the country. His thoughts on Evertons season are below, and my thoughts follow his in the remaining paragraphs. As always leave any thoughts or questions in the comments below.
Taylor: Going into the season, there was a lot of optimism surrounding Everton Football Club. Our strong finish last season showed the quality in the side, and many predicted a top 4 finish. While I was certainly optimistic last summer, I was not amongst those that thought we could qualify for the Champions League. There are simply too many clubs with vastly larger budgets than us competing for those 4 spots. Still this season has been somewhat of a disappointment. Our inconsistency is maddening. We can compete with the best teams in the league week in and week out, yet we always seem to falter against weaker opposition. We have shown we can play good, attacking football, but often lack the final ball and the ability to break down weaker teams that tend to sit back and defend against us. Our core group of players is as good as any in the league, but our depth is not as talented as those that consistently finish at the top. While this is largely due to our small budget, it is frustrating, because we have shown that we can compete with the best, but always come up just a bit short. It is often baffling how we can go and beat a top team in their house one week, and then lose at Goodison to a weaker team the next. Injuries have certainly been our enemy this season, but all too often our top players have not shown up. That being said, our team spirit is not in question. The boys all seem to be friends off the field and want to fight for each other on it. We have shown an ability to overcome adversity unlike any team in the league. It has been a roller coaster of a season, and I think if you look at our overall performances, 7th is not an unfair finish. If someone predicted 7th in November, they would have looked like a fool, so I suppose we can be happy that the boys put together such a strong finish to the season. At the same time, the last few months have proven that we are a quality side, and if we could only play the entire season like we do the second half of it, we would be in Europe every year. I have a lot of optimism going into next season. During our injury plague, some young guys stepped up and performed well, and they will certainly be very useful going forward. If our squad stick together and stays the same over the summer, and we can start the season like we finished this one, we will be a force to be reckoned with. Clubs with much larger budgets than us would kill for some of our players, and teams with similar funds can only dream of the squad we possess. While we will be left wondering what could have been this season had we consistently performed at our best, we can at least be proud of the boys and their ability to finish the season strongly, and can have hope for a better finish next year. So to sum it up, I am disappointed because I know we are better than 7th place, but in retrospect, we did not perform at our best consistently enough to finish above some of the teams above us, so our current position is a fair reflection of the season.
Brian: As for me, this season really just seemed to be a typical Everton season under David Moyes. Once again we started the season off slowly, drawing games we should have won, and losing games we should have drawn. The only real difference seemed to be the lack of injuries early on, but that problem fixed itself as we moved in to the new year. Tim Cahill truly saved our butts in the first half as his knack for getting a head on the ball proved to be the one bright spot during those dark months. As usual, the turn of the calendar brought a type of form to the Squad, as Everton managed to remain unbeaten at home through the second half of the season, and dropped very few points in a charge that saw them secure a 7th place finish, up one spot from last season. Unfortunately this season Everton was not able to qualify for the Europa League as both the Carling Cup and FA Cup spots went to teams that did not qualify for Europe, which is a shame as the squad could use the extra money. As always Everton turns toward the summer with the hope of hanging on to its stars, while being able to bring in a few low priced players that David Moyes can work his magic on.
That is all for our quick season reviews here on Everton Offside, check over at Royal Blue Mersey in the coming days for their brief take about how this season went with Everton. Of course just because the the season is over doesn’t mean that we are going anywhere. Over the next few weeks we are going to look at Everton’s season from every conceivable angle as we wait for the silly season to open up. After that we will move into looking at the future for Everton, including previewing the new season, taking a look at the new squad, and as always hoping against hope that Everton can retain some of their biggest names in the hope of finally making a challenge for the final Champions League spot. On other fronts we hope to have some news for you about the future of the Everton Offside/Royal Blue Mersey partnership that includes new writers, new features, hopefully a new podcast, and if we are lucky a few other goodies that we can bring to our readers. Hope you enjoyed this season, and until next time COYB!