The views in these blogs are those held by the individual blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton Football Club.
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Well I don’t know about you, but I’m delighted the transfer window is now firmly shut for the next four months!
Like most Evertonians, I woke up last Wednesday with very few expectations that our day would be quite as busy as it was. I think everything that can be said has been said about Mikel Arteta’s move to Arsenal. I can’t recall a player ever speaking so affectionately about the club he has just left, and for that Mikel, we can only thank you!
Ask the majority of Evertonians what players we needed to bring in, and most would have told you “a left winger and a striker”. The additions of a Big Dunc-esque striker in Denis Stracqualursi (that’s easier to spell than say!) and a much needed pacey winger in Royston Drenthe are just what we wanted. Drenthe in particular excites me, having witnessed his ‘Player of the tournament’ performances in the U21’s European Championships in 2007.
It’s finally time for football to be our sole focus and concern. Aston Villa are the visitors to Goodison Park this weekend, a team who, certainly in my lifetime, have been a bit of a bogey side for us.
Villa have arguably had a much more turbulent ride coming into this season compared to us. The changeover in manager has seen two of their biggest assets in Ashley Young and Stewart Downing move to pastures new, with, in my opinion, no eye-catching replacements when you consider the sizeable amount of money that changed hands.
I’m always fearful of Darren Bent when he comes up against us. He’s the kind of striker we’ve been missing for years now; playing on the shoulder of defenders, causing a nuisance and a top finisher. If we can keep him quiet on Saturday, I’m struggling to see where the goals will come from.
We’ve still not got out of the traps yet this season despite our ‘smash and grab’ win at Blackburn. Hopefully that victory will be the spark that ignites a run of positive results, results that you feel we need given the ongoing unrest amongst a small minority of fans.
My brother criticises me sometimes for being pessimistic when it comes to Everton, but I have to say, despite the ‘below par’ performances so far, I’m quietly confident about this season. The transfer window was always going to be a difficult period for us, and although we haven’t exactly come through it unscathed, we know as a squad we have a team spirit that can not be matched in the top flight of football, and we also have fans whose passion can definitely not be questioned. Almost everybody has written us off now, but it’s up to us as fans to get behind the boys and prove why it’s so dangerous to write-off the under-dog.