Stoke City and Roberto Martinez and That

Remember them sinister pencil drawings by sixth formers that used to adorn the walls of the art department at school?

There was always one of an iron or a kettle, and the distorted impression of the room it stood in reflected in the metal – the artist himself elongated like the figure in The Scream. Drawings of iconic figures and album covers always featured heavily – it’s probably all Tupac Shakur and H from Steps nowadays – but back in the 80s prog was still a thing, and so  you would always get pictures of the Pink Floyd ‘two flowers shagging’ and, of course, scenes depicting Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds.

One image in particular always stood out from the HG Wells space opera, and that’s the one with the ragged figure of a priest being vaporised as he holds up a tiny crucifix in pathetic defiance of one of the hulking alien automatons laying waste to London.

Well, dear reader, you can see where this is going right now, can’t you? That’s right, the murderous space tripod represents Roberto Martinez and what he’s going to do to Everton if something doesn’t change soon.

It wasn’t really, he was the priest, but we’ve discussed his obsessive faith in one style of play that often now that even the laptop has started underlining in red words like ‘possession’ and suggests as an alternative ‘fuck off writing this shite you bore and go outside and meet girls’.

Anyway, going down meekly at Stoke and then talking about the Europa League causing tiredness has got to start the alarm bells ringing for everyone now. Everyone.

Can we go down?

Fucking right we can.

Look at our league form. Then look at our results against Leicester City, one of the sides so bad they will be our saviours. Then look at how many games are left.

It would surely be the most Everton thing ever too, if on the brink of the most lucrative TV deal of all time the Toffees decided that they were going to dip out of the top division and pass up on it.

And how we laughed.

Does the trigger get pulled on Martinez now then? Aaah, but remember him in that Bring Me Sunshine video?

Chances are he will be given more time, but not much. The home leg against Kiev and then Newcastle at Goodison.  Fail to beat the Geordies and even the endlessly loyal Bill Kenwright will concede that it’s time to take the Spaniard out behind the woodshed.

We’ve always tried as much as possible to not compare Martinez with his predecessor, out of respect to both really. When we were flying last season it seemed churlish to pour scorn on David Moyes’s previous decade of hard work. Likewise, it’s somewhat disingenuous to now ‘yearn’ for the solidity and safety the Scot brought when everyone moaned about his conservatism for so long.

That said, you do feel as if Moyes would have almost cherished the situation we are in now, which probably indicates some of his limitations as a manager. Backs against the wall with some winnable home games to come, whereas you feel Martinez is lying in a darkened room with a cool flannel on his brow, murmuring feverishly about Wembley and the Nou Camp, old ginger spuds would just fucking love it. He’d have his trackies tucked into his shit trainees and be out there, throwing Tim Cahill or Marouane Fellaini up front and trying to blast upcoming sides like Newcastle, Burnley or Southampton out of the park through sheer force of will.

And the crowd would get behind that.

The worry, and we will know after the game on the 15th, is that Martinez’s very DNA makes it almost impossible for him to tap into those reserves of raw, indignant spite that are so integral to the whole ‘Everton experience’, because right now Goodison is more of a petting zoo than a bear pit.

Who knows, perhaps Martinez, with his undoubted intelligence and style, is indeed a manager ahead of his time. But Everton desperately need one for the here and now.

Ooh, serious face.

16 thoughts on “Stoke City and Roberto Martinez and That

  1. Great article, well articulated, but Im shitting, didnt sleep well last night, my partner thinks its us etc, cant let her know, its all about him. Play Kone up front with Lukaku, Miralas, Gibson, McCarthy, Naismith in the middle, lets go for games. We are horrendous to watch. We need heros, where are they

    1. Do you know what, I am inclined to agree, let’s just for the immediate future say “fuck this for a game
      of soldiers” and attack endlessly because there doesn’t appear to be a great deal of point in ‘trying’ to defend…we can’t….for toffee. As an added bonus lining up 1-2-5-3 would blow the Sky pundits’ minds.

      Given our current ability to play the game is falling faster than my interest in this sentence anything has got be worth a go….except Antolin Alcaraz of course, things aren’t that bad…yet!

  2. He bottled it when they capitulated against Arsenal and Chelsea, we actually played well in those games We attacked with impotesus and moved ball forward, had we have continued to play like that we’d have won a good half of our games. Instead he reverted to a Moyes in Pep’s clothing style of being negative as fuck but still trying to pass it like a weirdo.

  3. Remember at half time against Coventry under Mike Walker (the Barry Horne offside debacle) and the dj playing Linger by the Cranberries. Time to get Delores out of her box.

  4. The Kiev home leg is nigh on unwinnable and unloseable. All at the same simultaneous real happening time.

    If we win it by just a goal – then disgruntled Park End arl arse will give it: “Meh. Who’s arsed? We’ll get webbed over there – and it’s not like we’ve got a chance of winning the pot anyway. He’s getting no grace from me tonight – it’s all about Newcastle.”

    If we win it by 2 goals or more (yeah, anno, just go with it) – then angst riddled Street End lid will give it: “Sssake Ever-uhn! I’m made up, like lad. But why can’t we do this in the league? See, he has us all pumped up for this, and we play boss mate. But watch us on Sunday, we’ll get lamped by Newcastle. He does me head in! Knobhead! I’m dreading Sunday now!”

    If we lose 1.0 – then fuming granddad in the Upper Bullens will give it: “That’s it! We’re out of this now as well. Cheers lad. Brown shoes and brown kex! Tell yer, seen his type all me life fella. The only benefit is that it should free us up to concentrate on avoiding relegation – but their heads will well drop even further now. This was all they were arsed about. Now it’s gone too. We may as well plan for Brentford now. Hurry up Art, we can still make the Top House.”

    If we lose by 2 goals or more – then perma-incandescent in the Main Stand, hanging and frothing over the Director’s Box wall, will give it: “Kenwright! Yeah you bellend! He needs sacking tonight. Hear me, dickhead? Tonight! No, not tomorrow. Tooo-nite! Look at me when I’m talking to ya, yer ignorant get! Gambled our whole season on that second rate crock of crap yiz all have. And for wha, a few quid from ITV4? Get shut lad, and do one with him and take the rest of the comedians with yer. Yeah go edd, just sneer and walk on. Hello, Jenny love. No offence doll.”

    See? Unwinable and unloseable. A rare Everton feat. I’m not sure about it being drawable or undrawable. I’ll mull over that. I think that’s when the Paddock and the Enclosure would have their say, though.

  5. Wouldn’t it be great if we thought Roberto knew what to do and had a way of doing it.

    But we don’t, he doesn’t and he hasn’t.

    Difficult decision but I think he’ll be gone before next season. Pity it didn’t work out.

  6. I really want Martinez to succeed but I fear for him now. Frankly it’s incredible that the poor form is now down to post Europa League tiredness (so what was Christmas?) and phenomenal that the players will now be treating each league match like a cup final. What were you doing before lads? How reassuring. How about balancing Champions League with the Championship? If the players can’t hack league and Europa League, can’t see them fancying that much. The defensive three holding midfielders formation is worse than than the attack minded front 4 and the whole thing spanks of someone who really isn’t sure what to do for the best. So much for principles. Suddenly I can’t help but wonder if Bobby’s comments on the supportive Bill Kenwright were actually a bit of game playing knowing full well he should have (or has) genuine concerns for his job.

  7. “Put simply, we cannot lose at Stoke City.”


    Put simply, HE cannot lose against Kiev or Newcastle.

  8. MOB nails it yet again. The reference to the “Bring Me Sunshine video” sums up what Everton has become – fur coat and no knickers. It’s all about the show; unfortunately not the one on the pitch. I worried at the start of the season when I saw the giant image at the Park End of a manager who’s only been at the club for 5 minutes, and the adoration for a well-past-his-sell-by-date goalkeeper in the form of a “USA day” at Goodison to mark his allegedly brilliant World Cup. I wonder why they haven’t had a “Belgium Day” for the lad who belted the winner past him and who also happens to play for Everton? No, I fear the lunatics are running the asylum; “memorable matchday” should mean only one thing and that is coming away having witnessed an Everton team playing good, winning football. Instead we are fed a constant diet of platitudes, misplaced positivity, and so-called possession football that usually ends up going backwards and Howard smacks it into touch or to the opposition. Oh but we do have our memorable matchday experience to compensate; get real Everton, cut out the luvvy, limelight stuff and put some real effort into proper behind the scenes work of supporting how to achieve the right results on the pitch

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