What The Papers Say - 25 July
Wednesday's newspaper round-up.
The views on this page are taken from the local and national media and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton.
JOHNNY HEITINGA is considering following Tim Cahill out of Everton and joining Turkish club Fenerbahce.
The Holland defender is a £5million target for the Istanbul-based side and Everton are prepared to let him leave.
Manager David Moyes is keen on USA defender Geoff Cameron, 27, who plays for Houston Dynamos.
Everton's Johnny Heitinga is set to join Turkish giants Fenerbahce in a £5million deal within the next few days.
The Istanbul club hope to agree a price for the Holland international quickly, because he is entering the last year of his contract.
Toffees manager David Moyes is in the process of waving goodbye to midfield talisman Tim Cahill, who's bound for MLS side New York Red Bulls, and is fighting to keep Leighton Baines out of Manchester United's clutches.
Ironically, Fenerbahce have had Everton centre-back Joseph Yobo playing for them on loan for the last two seasons.
Now, they have gone back to Goodison for Heitinga, who looks sure to make the move.
Fenerbahce will offer the 28-year-old a long-term contract, and the fee they are prepared to pay may be too good for Everton to turn down as they seek to fund signings of their own.
Moyes wants money to buy Steven Pienaar back from Tottenham, 18 months after selling the midfielder to the Londoners.
Cahill's cut-price move to New York will not cover that expense on his own, so Moyes is set to part with another player.
Johnny Heitinga could become Everton's third big departure of the week after Fenerbahce made a £5million bid for the Holland defender.
After Tim Cahill agreed to move to New York Red Bulls for £1m, Heitinga is mulling over an offer to join fellow centre half Joseph Yobo, who signed for Fenerbahce on Monday.
Heitinga's compatriot and close friend Dirk Kuyt also signed for the Turkish club earlier this summer.
The 28-year-old, has entered the final 12 months of his Goodison Park contract and Everton manager David Moyes has lined up USA defender Geoff Cameron, who is also wanted by Stoke, as a replacement.
Everton are in pole position to land the Houston Dynamo centre half and could secure his signature for £1.7m.
Stoke have been struggling to agree that fee as they tighten their purse strings. Moyes is overseeing a revamp of his squad and offloading Cahill, Yobo and now Heitinga will give him scope to bring in new recruits.
Everton were due to fly to Indonesia yesterday to participate in the Java Cup but their trip was cancelled at the last minute due to problems with the tournament organisers.
Galatasaray and Uruguayan club Nacional also withdrew over issues of finance and safety.
An Everton spokesperson said: 'Officials here and our forward planning and security team deployed to Jakarta at the weekend have repeatedly asked for clarity and assurances from the organisers on the issues.
'Unfortunately we have not received the answers required in time to ensure our participation.'
JOHNNY HEITINGA is considering following Tim Cahill out of Everton by joining Turkish side Fenerbahce.
The Holland defender is a £5m target for the Turks and Everton are prepared to let him leave as David Moyes continues to overhaul his squad.
In preparation for Heitinga’s departure, Everton are trying to hijack Stoke’s deal for US international Geoff Cameron, 27, who plays for Houston Dynamos.
Stoke have already agreed a £1.6m fee, but Moyes is now showing interest. Heitinga, 28, has two years left on his £55,000-a-week contract, but Fenerbahce are ready to give him a pay rise.
The proceeds from his fee would help Moyes close a deal for Tottenham’s Steven Pienaar, while he is also interested in Blackpool’s Matt Phillips.
Meanwhile, Everton pulled out of a tour of Indonesia yesterday at the 11th hour over security fears.
Moyes’ squad was due to play in the inaugural Java Cup, but Galatasaray withdrew and Everton followed suit.
EVERTON FC pulled out of the ill-fated Java Cup amid fears no tickets had been sold in advance and security concerns about the tournament.
Blues officials made the difficult decision to withdraw from the inaugural pre-season competition in Indonesia at the last minute, after they could not get assurances over which other teams were taking part and when games would go ahead.
The four-team cup was scheduled to start on Friday, when Everton were due to play a Malaysian XI before facing the winners of another fixture on Sunday.
But Everton became concerned after original opponents Galatasaray withdrew on Monday, then their mooted replacements, Uruguayan side Nacional, denied involvement.
David Moyes and his players were set to fly to Jakarta yesterday, but were eventually told to stand down when it was confirmed the club had decided to cut their losses.
Everton have pledged to compensate fans who had flown to Asia to cheer on the Blues, and requested that they contact their communications department to make arrangements.
The ECHO understands that no alternative friendly fixtures will be arranged for this weekend, and the players will have a break before their next game at Blackpool on Sunday, August 5.
An Everton spokesman said: “Club officials here in the UK and our forward planning/security team deployed to Jakarta at the weekend have repeatedly asked for clarity and assurances from the organisers on the issues but unfortunately have not received the answers we required in the time frame necessary to ensure our participation.
“We are grateful for the support today of the Indonesian government in this matter, however the unresolved issues mean that the risk of travelling was too great.
“This decision was not taken lightly and we apologise for the obvious inconvenience caused to our supporters who have made, or were planning to make the trip and to our Indonesian fans who were looking forward to seeing Everton in action.
“The first team squad will now stay in the UK and continue their pre-season preparations.”
The club added that supporters who had independently booked to travel, or who have made their way to Indonesia, should first check their travel insurers and then email the Club on: email@example.com.
The ECHO were unable to contact the tournament organisers for comment.
IN HIS prime Tim Cahill never required Red Bull to be at his gravity-defying, defence terrorising best – but as his 33rd birthday approaches a true Blue icon has decided he does need to spread his wings after all.
The Aussie so respected and loved by Everton’s fan base has decided to call time on his eight-year Goodison career, and grasp the opportunity of a glamorous move to play for New York Red Bulls in MLS.
As one Twitter user posted last night: ‘Corner flags of the Red Bull Arena beware – you’re in for a pummelling’.
The esteem in which Cahill was held on the blue half of Merseyside has barely dimmed in recent seasons, but maybe for the midfielder the writing was on the wall before Monday night when his exit was agreed.
After a season when a normally prolific poacher scored just three goals for the Toffees – and went without finding the net throughout 2011 – his previously guaranteed first-team place had come under more scrutiny from David Moyes.
Cahill was only left on the bench on a handful of occasions towards the end of last term, but for a proud warrior who still feels he has plenty to give – perhaps the life of a bit-part player did not hold much appeal.
This was not, however, a transfer demanded by a player desperate to get away. If anything the Blue Kangaroo was initially tempted to stay for another season of Premier League battling.
But when his advisors – the Los Angeles-based and influential Wasserman Media Group, who also represent Ross Barkley, Jack Rodwell and Landon Donovan – received a host of lucrative offers ranging from China to the Middle East, it became apparent Cahill had plenty of options should he consider moving on.
Perhaps, in the end, he wanted to go out with his legend status intact. Everton’s leading post-war goalscorer in Merseyside derbies, an immense 68 goals in total to his name for a player who was never truly a striker, and countless inspirational winners.
There were so many moments. That audacious overhead kick against Chelsea, a season-altering late winner against Sunderland, those derby goals, and a defiant strike in a Manchester United fight-back.
Even when he wasn’t scoring he was up to something. That head-lock on Xabi Alonso as the Blues raced away to score during a 3-0 rout of Liverpool in 2006, the show of solidarity with Samoan Tsunami victims after scoring in the pouring rain at Bate Borisov, and that trademark jab-cross-jab celebration on corner flags across the country which put a smile on fans’ faces.
A man who sweated every ounce of perspiration for his club, who played through umpteen injuries that would have ruled out many, and absorbed what it really meant to represent the Toffees in a sparsely successful age.
He has certainly achieved a fine legacy – you only have to listen to the outpouring of sadness his departure will trigger among supporters.
And for Everton – in the unsentimental, cold hard light of day – the deal makes imminent sense. While it could not have hurt one iota to retain his finely honed goal grabbing instincts for another year, the Blues save almost £3m in wages and bank a £1m transfer fee.
They have already added Steven Naismith, seven years Cahill’s junior, who can operate in the same role, and can perhaps now afford another recruit in addition to the nearly completed deal for Steven Pienaar.
But for now, forgive Bluenoses if they remain sentimental for a while, and bid farewell to the man from the other side of the world who truly became one of their own.