Well done The FA, Pompey don’t deserve Europe.


The 2008 FA Cup winning Portsmouth team: ill gotten gains?

Now that Everton have finished 8th in the Premier League and will not be playing Europa League football next season I can comment, without accusations of bias, on the decision to prevent Portsmouth from being allowed to compete in Europe despite reaching the Cup Final. The decision means that whoever finishes 7th in the Premier League will take that Europa spot instead of the South Coast club and I have to applaud the FA’s decision on that front.

I’ve got nothing against Portsmouth, despite previous posts to this website where I’ve suggested that it would be good for them to be relegated (so as to relieve themselves of the mercenary remnants of Redknapp’s reign and start over). But as a club, I’m ambivalent towards Portsmouth, I certainly don’t want them to go bust but I shan’t miss watching them play. I’m also full of admiration for the job that Avram Grant has done since taking over, but despite his dignified slowing of their inevitable free fall, they don’t deserve a European adventure next season.

Click through to find out why…


Cheer Up Davey: It’s not quite the end of the world.


Cheer up Davey, its not the end of the world.

Cheer up Davey, it's not the end of the world.

Firstly, apologies for my slightly slack posting recently – I’ve been compiling an application to a postgrad journalism course and it’s been a lot of work. Gone are the days of just filling in a form you know, but I’m nearly there with it now so will be returning to regular posts ASAP (don’t mention exams though, yeah?).

Secondly, today’s post is as much for my own benefit as for yours. There are few things that can make me thoroughly enjoy the prospect of getting out of bed before six o’clock on a Friday morning, but one of them is the prospect of watching Everton playing in Europe. As those of you who’ve seen the score (which, for reasons of self-preservation I won’t repeat) will know, it wasn’t really worth it. Such a defeat is always demoralising and makes you feel like the world has just ended.

Click through to find out why, happily, it hasn’t…

BATE Borisov 1-2 Everton: Match Analysis

Tim Cahill heps Everton surpass adversity to defeat BATE.

Tim Cahill helps Everton surpass adversity to defeat BATE.

It’s football’s ability to show that adversity can be conquered that makes it so enjoyable sometimes. When Everton travelled to Belarus for their Europa League match against BATE Borisov yesterday, they were missing nine players from their first team squad through injury, suspension or intelligibility and when they arrived, stand-in captain Joseph Yobo picked up an injury in training just for good measure.

That meant that Tony Hibbert had to fill in at centre back while young Dan Gosling was forced to drop into the right back slot. It also enforced a change of formation from 4-5-1 to 4-4-2 because the only senior player on the bench (except Carlo Nash) was Yakubu, who came in to partner Jo up front and left us with outfield substitutes aged 17, 17, 17, 17, 18 and 19. And this was against a side who have won three league titles in a row and drew with Juventus twice in the Champions League groups stages last season.

Click through for the full article…

European Football: Three Conclusions

Will Evertons new star Bily help Russia shine in South Africa?

Will Everton's new star 'Bily' help Russia shine in South Africa?

After a full midweek’s worth of Champions and Europa League action, we should have plenty to talk about. Unfortunately, most matches involving English sides went… pretty much as planned. Still, I’ve drawn a couple of conclusions from this little lot of results, do let me know what you think…

1. Russia are going to have a cracking World Cup.

We all remember just how well Russia played at Euro 2008. I watched an awful lot of that tournament when I wasn’t moping around and wishing England were there, and the Russians were brilliant. Not only were they technically good, but they just seemed to run and run and run and then, for a change, run some more. They work incredibly hard, have great discipline and are a very effective team. Plus, they were managed by Mr. Magic himself, Guus Hiddink.

Click through for the rest of this, plus two more conclusions…