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What The Papers Say - Friday 4 January

A round-up of Friday's local and national newspapers.

What The Papers Say - Friday 4 January

The views on this page are taken from the local and national media and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton. 

Daily Mirror

Phil Jagielka has has committed his future to Everton by signing a new five-year contract.
 
The new deal will keep the England defender at Goodison Park until 2017 when he will be 34.
 
The 30-year-old has established himself as one of the most consistent defenders in the Barclays Premier League since moving to Goodison Park from Sheffield United for £4million in 2007.
 
Toffees chief executive Robert Elstone said:” We are delighted Phil has agreed to commit his long-term future here at Goodison Park.
 
“Phil is a hugely important and influential player and I, like many Evertonians, look forward to seeing him play in a Blue shirt for many years to come.
 
“Discussions have been taking place for a short while and, now they are completed, I would like to thank Phil and his representatives for the professionalism and courtesy shown throughout those negotiations.”
 
Jagielka, 30, joined the Toffees in a £4m deal from Sheffield United when the Blades were relegated in 2007.
 
He has played nearly 200 times for Everton since then, and is now a regular in the England set up, having appeared 16 times for the national side.

Daily Mail

Fulham have launched a bid for Molde defender Vegard Forren.

The Norway international was due to join up with the national squad for their training camp but was pulled out after his club received a £4million bid.

The highly-rated 24-year-old defender has been watched closely by a number of Premier League sides, notably Everton and Sunderland.

Molde boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed: 'Vegard is not travelling to the national team camp, because we are in the final stages of negotiations with another club.
 
'It's possible that Vegard will go for a medical check-up and negotiate his personal contract.'

The Echo

PHIL JAGIELKA and Sylvain Distin could end their careers at Everton FC.
 
England defender Jagielka, 30, signed a new deal yesterday which runs to 2017, while defensive partner Distin, 35, is expected to be offered a new deal shortly.
 
And former Everton defender and ESPN analyst Martin Keown believes the pair are integral to Everton’s bid for Champions League football next season.

The pair have partnered each other in central defence on 11 occasions this season, and Keown said: “In Phil Jagielka and Sylvain Distin Everton have two defenders who really complement each other.
 
“One of the things which really stands out when you watch Jagielka is the number of blocks he gets in.
 
“He does extremely well inside his own penalty box, while Distin’s strength comes working the channels where he can use his power and strength.
 
“To keep playing as well as he does at his age is commendable. And they are just as valuable to Everton as the likes of Marouane Fellaini.”
 
Jagielka’s existing deal was due to run until the end of the 2014/15 campaign.
 
His extension now takes him until beyond his 34th birthday.
 
Blues Chief Executive Robert Elstone said: “We are delighted Phil has agreed to commit his long-term future here at Goodison Park.
 
“Phil is a hugely important and influential player and I, like many Evertonians, look forward to seeing him play in a Blue shirt for many years to come.”
 
After signing from Sheffield United for £4m in the summer of 2007, Jagielka was used initially in central midfield and at full-back.
 
But after returning to his favoured central defensive role he flourished and won a call up to the England squad in June 2008.
 
He has since won 16 caps and scored his first international goal last year against Italy – and has captained the Blues in the absence of club skipper Phil Neville.

The Echo

IN HIS spell as Everton FC manager, Colin Harvey brought talent as diverse and as dazzling as Pat Nevin, Tony Cottee, Norman Whiteside and Stuart McCall to Goodison Park.
 
But his reaction was resolute when he was asked once for his best Blues signing.
 
“Martin Keown,” he declared.
 
The feeling was mutual.
 
Snapped up from Aston Villa for a modest £750,000 in the summer of 1989, Keown made 126 appearances for Everton before being moved on to Arsenal for £2m.

But despite enjoying unparalleled success at Highbury, he never forgot his time on Merseyside, and revealed that the decision to move in 1993 wasn’t entirely his!
 
“I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Everton,” said Keown, now a TV analyst working on this season’s FA Cup with ESPN. “The only disappointment was that I couldn’t contribute to the club winning anything tangible in my four years there.
 
“I played under Colin Harvey and Howard Kendall and I was eternally grateful to them for the opportunity to play at a club like Everton.
 
“Looking back in hindsight it was probably a bit much to ask a young lad, which I was then, to step into the boots of a club legend like Kevin Ratcliffe. But I always gave absolutely everything.
 
“And it always felt like it was a club at the crossroads.
 
“We knocked Liverpool out of the FA Cup in 1991 after the famous 4-4 draw, then went to West Ham in the quarter-finals.
 
“It was played at night under the Upton Park lights and West Ham always seemed to get an extra impetus from playing under the floodlights.
 
“They went through and that seemed to be the theme of my time at Everton.
 
“We had a few near misses.”

But while Everton was a club in transition at the time, on the slide from the glory days of the 1980s, Keown’s career was in the ascendant.
 
It was during his time at Everton that he won the first of his 43 England caps, and Keown credits the Everton fans for his call-up.
 
“I think it was partly down to the Everton fans who helped get me into that England squad,” he explained.
 
“They made their voices heard at a time when people were being tried out in the national side and I got my chance.
 
“The atmosphere was always superb at Goodison. Even though I played a lot of my career at Highbury I loved Goodison.
 
“And I’m glad that the stadium has still retained its integrity. Everton is a big club, but it always felt like a family. There was always a togetherness and I hear that it’s still the same now.
 
“When I was there it was a like a big family, from Mary in the canteen through to the gaffer.
 
“It was like that even when I left the club.
 
“I thought I was going in to the manager’s office to negotiate a contract extension, instead he ended up offering me a new club!
 
“Then in true Howard Kendall style he opened a bottle of champagne and toasted the move with me!
 
“Arsenal was the only place I’d have left Everton to join. It was a move back down south, although my son was born in Merseyside and is a Scouser.
 
“He plays at the Reading Academy and I came back up to Finch Farm to watch him play recently. It must be the first time I’ve visited properly in almost 20 years and I couldn’t believe how I was treated.
 
“I was like a long lost son.
 
“I bumped into Gary Ablett and it was desperately sad to hear about his illness, but he made a big impression on me as did everyone else that day.
 
“Some of the faces are still the same – Jimmy Martin is still around – and I hope they have a good run in the Cup this year.
 
“Cheltenham are fourth in League Two and it’s quite a sticky pitch, to say the least, which could be a great leveller.
 
“But the experience David Moyes and his squad have will cope with that. I can’t see anything other than an Everton victory.”

TRIAL by television can be costly. Just ask Marouane Fellaini who spent three matches kicking his heels on the sidelines over Christmas, after his flagrant reaction to Ryan Shawcross’s attentions was picked up by at least three different camera angles.
 
It wasn’t always that way – as Martin Keown ruefully recalls.
 
A powerful, imposing central defender when Everton went to Wembley in 1991 for the Zenith Data Systems Cup Final, Keown left the celebrated pitch on a stretcher seeing stars.
 
An uncompromising Crystal Palace side which contained monolithic individuals like Eric Young, Andy Thorn and Garry Thompson, plus current Newcastle manager Alan Pardew, walked up the Wembley steps to collect the silverware – while Keown was having his face stitched back up in the Wembley hospital.
 
“If that match had been played today the authorities would have thrown the book at the players involved,” he said. “It was blatant off the ball ... well, let’s just say I was stretchered off and didn’t see any of extra time. But fortunately Wembley has its own hospital.”
 
Football has certainly changed since that brutal afternoon – and not just in the technology that now polices the game.
 
And it’s the role of defenders which has adapted more than most in recent years.
 
Keown famously became one third of the most resolute defensive triumvirate in modern football when he left Everton for Arsenal.
 
So rock solid was the axis of Bould-Adams-Keown that Gunners fans gleefully adopted the refrain “One nil to the Ar-se-nal!” – and so reliable was that defence that one goal was usually enough.
 
Nowadays the emphasis appears to be more on attack, even from the back.
 
“What you see now is that full-backs are given much more licence to go forward than they ever were in the past,” explained Keown, now a TV analyst for ESPN. “If you look back to when David Moyes first took over at Everton to now, the emphasis has changed completely for the full-backs.
 
“I actually thought Seamus Coleman was a winger I saw him flying forward so often, but he’s actually described as a right-back.
 
“On the other side Leighton Baines creates most of Everton’s chances.
 
“But that switch in emphasis exposes the centre-backs much more and an apparent strength can become a weakness.
 
“But in Phil Jagielka and Sylvain Distin Everton have two defenders who really complement each other.
 
“One of the things which really stands out when you watch Jagielka is the number of blocks he gets in.
 
“He does extremely well inside his own penalty box, while Distin’s strength comes working the channels where he can use his power and strength.
 
“To keep playing as well as he does at his age is commendable.
 
“And they are just as valuable to Everton as the likes of Fellaini.”

michael Jack petersonHave to admit I thought he was a real hardman in the mould of Tony Adam's; Jack Charlton. I was so sorry when he was moved on (for the money by the club)

Friday 4th January 18:02 Report Comment

Sam Peelgood memories Martin Keown - now lets get a cup run sorted

Friday 4th January 13:15 Report Comment

Chris WynneTo be fair, Lineker has said his biggest regret is not staying and winning the English League with Everton.

Friday 4th January 11:09 Report Comment

phil atkinsonGary has always said that we were the BEST club side he ever played for in his playing career, he repeated it recentlyon match of the day.

Friday 4th January 11:48 Report Comment

martin gwilliamCMON YOU BLUES LETS GET CHELTENAM SORTED, KEEP THE FOOT ON THE PEDDLE, NOT ONE PLAYER WHO WANTS TO LEAVE THE CLUB THIS TRANSFER WINDOW..... COYB

Friday 4th January 10:28 Report Comment

lee websterSounds like a nice fella. Was hard replacing ratcliffe but good player. Pity the likes of linekar never comment about the time they wore blue.

Friday 4th January 10:01 Report Comment
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