Match: Barclays Premier League: Hull 2 Everton 0
Venue: KC Stadium
Scorers: Elmohamady (33), Jelavic (43)
Hull 2 Everton 0: Premier League Struggle Heading For Crisis
By Eoin Leeson
Everton’s Premier League struggle continued on New Year’s Day as they went down 2-0 against an ordinary Hull side.
Both goals highlighted our defensive issues, a key component in our struggles so far this season.
There was a lack of effort to close down Liam Rosenior who crossed for Ahmed Elmohamady to head past Joel Robles after slack marking from Leighton Baines.
Former Blue Nikicia Jelavic extended the Tigers’ lead when he capitalised on a poorly organised backline to lob the ball over Robles. Gareth Barry was the deepest player and after playing Jelavic onside failed to try and recover the situation.
It was awful defending now typical of this Everton team and we are only 6 goals away from conceding as many as we did in the whole of the last campaign.
We ended the game with 10 men after Antolin Alcaraz picked up two bookings. The second one was never a yellow and it was unfortunate on the Paraguayan.
That said an appeal is unlikely so with Phil Jagielka and John Stones just returning to full fitness, its likely Tyias Browning or Brendan Galloway will get a chance in the coming games.
We actually started the game quite well but as soon as Hull came at us we panicked and didn’t look like our assured selves from last season.
As great as his desire is, Muhamed Besic’s habit of getting yellow cards needs to stop as it hampers him for the rest of the game. Ross Barkley was guilty of another dive which wasn’t great to see.
Hopefully that ends along with his poor form.
It’s now very clear to see that this is no longer a blip in form but a fairly serious crisis.
I don’t think there’s any chance that we’ll be relegated but more that this is going to be a case of second season syndrome under Roberto Martinez where we underachieve after such a successful campaign last season.
That success is just one of the reasons why Martinez cannot be sacked in the next few weeks. He also needs to be given the transfer window and time to prove he can steady the ship.
However, if we are out of the Europa League and FA Cup and lie in the bottom half of the table by March then the board may have to act in some way.
He is a good manager but needs to rethink his tactics. The team need to be playing in a clear formation with line ups consistent. There has to be on emphasis on improving basic defending as well as shaking our predictable style up.
Aside from Martinez and the mistakes he’s made, the players have been really disappointing too.
The team’s results have been bad but the performances have been terrifying. Over the past few weeks there’s been no effort or desire from the majority of the players.
It looks like they aren’t playing for the manager and this is a problem. It’s crucial that captain Jagielka and the senior players help out the manager by bringing order and realisation in the dressing room that things are very bad at the moment.
The end of the season should see the end of Sylvain Distin, Barry, Aiden McGeady and Alcaraz’s Everton careers.
Christian Atsu’s loan better not be renewed either. Those five are the usual suspects when it comes to being slow, clumsy, wasteful and just quite bad.
Barry looks to have had his last good season in 2013/2014 while the evergreen Distin’s age has finally caught up with him.
Alcaraz is ageing and his career has never really got going here. There’s a reason he played for Wigan. McGeady hasn’t been convincing since joining and his rare moments of genius aren’t enough for Everton.
It’s not just those five though, a lot of other players like Howard, Coleman and Robles have to up their game too.
As a 15 year old fan, this is my first experience of real trouble at the club and it’s horrible.
Our next game is against West Ham in the cup. It’ll be tricky but maybe a break from the league is just what we need. A loss would really hurt Martinez though.
After that we’ve got Manchester City. Brilliant.
I read a quote recently that went like this:
‘Visiting teams must survive matches at this ground in the certain knowledge that if Everton don’t get them, the crowd will.’
That was a said by a journalist about Goodison Park.
Fulfilling this quote is so important for the team and the fans. We have to show the players and manager we’re behind them in the next two games, both of which are at home, while the players have to make Goodison a fortress again.
Imagine what Premier League and FA Cup wins against two teams that have enjoyed success this season would do for everyone concerned with the club. Please Everton.
Up the Toffees.