What The Papers Say - 28 June
Fara Williams & Joseph Yobo the topics in Tuesday's newspapers.
The views on this page are taken from the local and national media and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton.
Prospect Magaye Gueye hopes to make himself a regular fixture in the Everton first team next season.
The 20-year-old Frenchman plans to hit the ground running when the players return to Finch Farm for pre-season training next week and impress manager David Moyes sufficiently to earn a place in the starting line-up for the Premier League curtain raiser against Tottenham.
Gueye broke through into the senior set-up towards the end of last season and impressed with a series of cameo displays, earning himself two league starts.
Now the France under-21 international says that after his debut year in the English football has brought him up to speed, he is ready to make an impact.
“Next season hopefully I can play more games,” said Gueye “I think this first year was more about settling in and learning about English football.
“I think I have already got better in my time here. I have got more used to the style of play as it is different from France where the football is not as physical. That is the biggest difference I have had to get used to.
"My objective is to come back and have a really good pre-season, get really fit and strong, impress the manager and get into the team for the first game. I need to get a bit stronger, keep working hard and believe in myself. If I am on the pitch then I am happy.
“I like it at Everton and I am here for five years. My aim is to play more games now and improve as a player in the English league.”
Gueye reckons his best position is just behind the striker – though he is happy to play anywhere
“I can play on the left or on the right and up front – that is not a problem,” he said.
“But my favourite position is probably just behind the striker.
Phil Neville insists Everton are on an upward curve.
And Phil Neville reckons that the strength of Everton’s academy system means the Goodison Park glory years are just around the corner.
The skipper is disappointed about the failure of David Moyes’ side to gatecrash the top four last season.
But he insists that Everton are only going to improve in the coming years. Neville, 34, said: “If you ask a lot of Evertonians I think they’d be quite disappointed with last season.There’s been a lot of negativity surrounding the club but we should snap out of that.
“I think we’re so close to something very special here.
“We’ve a manager who is not afraid to blood young players and I think the future is bright.”
Bill Kenwright has told Turkish newspapers that a deal to transfer Joseph Yobo from Everton to Fenerbahce could be completed “in a few days.”
The defender, on loan at the Turkish champions, cut short his holidays in Nigeria to return to Merseyside and meet Blues officials in a bid to speed up a permanent switch.
Talks lasted two days.
The sticking point is still both clubs’ respective valuations of the 30-year-old.
Everton believed they had a contractual agreement guaranteeing £6m for the Nigerian skipper should Fenerbahce want to complete a long term move.
But the Turks have offered just £3m.
Blues chairman Kenwright, however, is reported to have told Turkish journalists: “I think a result can be achieved in a few days.
“I have had no other bids.”
Yobo was David Moyes’ first signing for the Blues, making 259 appearances.
He moved to Fenerbahce last summer and helped the club to the Turkish title, scoring the goal which clinched the championship in a dramatic last day decider against Sivasspor.
First the expectation, then the deflation – England World Cup campaigns do seem to follow a familiar pattern. In their opening game of the 2011 tournament, Hope Powell's Three Lionesses, having been dominant in the early exchanges and profligate thereafter, were held to a frustrating draw by Mexico.
History precludes panic. Defeat at Euro 2009 in their opening group game against Italy did not prevent England's progress through to the final and in the last World Cup Powell's side escaped the group despite beginning their tournament with a draw against Japan.
But this was clearly not the fashion in which Powell had hoped her team would kick off their campaign. Controlled and aggressive in an opening half-hour that might have seen them lead by a greater margin than the one secured by Fara Williams's towering header after 21 minutes, England had their grip on the game shaken off by Monica Ocampo's long-range strike and never recovered their composure. By full-time they were on the ropes and swaying, desperate for the bell.
An on-pitch pep talk was required from the coach – the Mexican smiles and English frowns at the final whistle were a sign of just what an unexpected result this was – but Powell denied she faced a challenge to lift her players.
"You're disappointed, you want to win the game don't you?" she said. "If you've had opportunities to win it you come off disappointed. If the players weren't disappointed I'd be worried."
New Zealand, the lowest-ranked team in Group B, who slipped to defeat against Japan, the top seeds, on Monday afternoon, are next up for England on Friday. Defeat would see England with one foot on the plane home, and a draw would have them scrambling to reach a potential quarter-final with the host nation and overwhelming favourites, Germany.
Powell dismissed the idea that Monday's results added extra pressure to the fixture. "We want to win every game," she said. "That's always the plan."
After a third-minute scare, with Maribel Domínguez scampering through on goal before being denied by a fine Faye White tackle, England had eased into gear and Williams gave Powell's side a deserved lead.
The Everton midfielder has a happy knack of getting important goals – she was on target in both the qualifying play-off matches against Switzerland and opened the scoring for her country at Euro 2009 – and she leapt highest to meet Karen Carney's corner and send a looping header past Cecilia Santiago in the Mexico goal.
Rachel Yankey and Williams again tested the 16-year-old, the youngest goalkeeper to play in a World Cup for either sex, but Leonardo Cuéllar's side were on level terms before the interval. Ocampo cut inside Alex Scott and sent a 30-yard effort screaming into the top corner that Karen Bardsley in the England goal might have done better with and kept out.
"I'll have to look at it again but I know Karen is very disappointed that she didn't get there," Powell said. "It looked like the ball shifted but I think she should have saved it.
"The goal was the turning point. It gave them confidence. When you've been under the cosh for most of the game and then you score it gives you belief. But we missed chances and we should've won the game, we know that."
Eni Aluko should have put England ahead before the hour but air-kicked in front of goal after Carney's backpost header, and then poked weakly at Santiago when well placed. Mexico should have had a penalty moments later after Rachel Unitt made a late challenge on Alina Garciamendez.
Thereafter it was a scrappy affair, with both sides seeming sapped by the heat – after a week soaked by thunderstorms, the temperature tipped 28C, the hottest of the eight days of England's stay in Germany.
Kelly Smith's scooped free-kick that plopped narrowly but unthreateningly over the bar was as close as England came to a winner. The striker Ellie White was sprung from the bench in an attempt to heighten the threat on the Mexico goal but ended up making a vital contribution in defence, deflecting away Stephany Mayor's goalbound drive in injury time.