Two Toffees For The Price Of One
1) No new owners for Everton, are you going to be left behind, it does seem 'so last century' not to have big money foreign owners these days?!
Dominic Fitzpatrick I think there are two sides to the possible prospect of new investment. Any investment is likely to come from a foreigner; personally I am not sure foreign investment is a good thing. There’s obviously many perks that come with investment I.e. being to compete on a level playing field with the top four financially. I think many Evertonians like myself would love investment to be made into a new stadium for the club, which is paramount at this moment in time, especially with the pending move to Kirkby, outside of the city boundaries on the horizon.
Holroyd What we have that those big money teams around us don't is, a fantastic core to a side. We just need to make 2 or 3 signings a season to more than keep up with those who spend 100s of millions on foreign talent. We could probably get away with spending 20-30 million a year and easily keep pace, and this can come from the SKY money. You just look through Everton's team and see the terrific talent all approaching their peak, a back 5 of Howard, Baines, Lescott, Yobo, Neville/ Jagielka is more than a match for any of ours rivals, and with AJ and The Yak we have a strike force to be proud of. Our one Achilles heal at the moment would be our midfield, Mikel Arteta and Tim Cahill are obvious talents, but beyond that the rest are distinctly average. So Moyes should look for 2 wide men next summer, and I don't think we need big backing for that. Then we will be laughing our way to 5th place without spending overly big.
2) Were you satisfied with the transfer activity in the summer, do you have enough quality to sustain 7th or above?
Dominic Fitzpatrick I was, I can’t speak on behalf of every Everton fan however. I think David Moyes, once again, has proved his doubters wrong with some excellent dealings this summer. The one who stands out for me is Leighton Baines, he’s a cracking player, one for now and the future and at 5 million a real coup for us. The one negative point was the Fernandes debacle but we’ve moved on.
Holroyd Our summer business, in my honest opinion was fantastic. If we had signed a top midfielder I would of been on cloud 9, but I'm satisfied with what we got. Baines and Jagielka look like fabulous players, and will improve dramatically on our first 11, along with Pienaar, Gravesen and Wessels all on free or loan, we now have a decent squad. With this I would hope for at least 6th place, and the UEFA cup.
3) What are you expecting from Everton in the next few years, you seem to have a great manager but are hampered by debts?
Dominic Fitzpatrick I think you have hit the nail on the head. That has been the problem, that and playing in an aging stadium with very little income. The board have done fantastically well to keep us competing in recent seasons, but in order for Everton to keep building a new stadium is a must. The avenues of income one would bring will benefit the club massively.
Holroyd In 3 years time I would expect us to have won 2-3 trophies, and of broken the top four. As I stated before I think we are 2 midfielder away from a top top side, so if Moyes spends wisely again we will be more than a match for our lesser Merseyside rivals. Our debts are not that large compared to other Premier League clubs, and this isn't a major worry for me, nor do I think this will halt the Moyesie bandwagon. We are very much a club ready to hit the big time again, the glory years will be back sooner rather than later!
4) Are you guys seriously considering a move away from Goodison Park? Looks like a disaster for the soul-less City Of Manchester stadium, do you really want to move away from your history?
Dominic Fitzpatrick Yes its sad, very sad. Goodison is Everton and Everton is Goodison. No matter what people say about it, I.e. it being old, decrepit, it is still a fabulous arena for football and produces a terrific atmosphere on big occasions. Most of all, it is a sporting monument, and the prospect of selling up and having it bull-dozed down is hard to take.
Holroyd The move from my point of view is a tricky one, I think we may well have to leave Goodison as it will be hard to effectively expand and we currently have over 6500 obstructed views which is terrible in this day and age, however, I don't think Kirkby is the answer. The place itself is not suitable to begin with but I could live with this if it meant a stadium to be proud of, but what the club have come up with is not such a stadium. We seem to have left our motto of 'Nil Satis Nisi Optimum' (nothing but the best is good enough) and gone to 'Every Little Helps' (Moe Pies for Big Keith). The design reeks of soulless as you said, and we need to build a stadium that is individual to us, and suitable to house the mighty blues. This is a dark issue in the back of my mind when I'm optimistic about everything else Everton.
5) If you could have one of our players, who would it be and why? Who in our team do you fear for the upcoming match?
Dominic Fitzpatrick I think you have some terrific young players coming through, the likes of Agbonlahor, Moore, Young. I don’t think there are any players in your team I would love to have, but if I had to choose I would take either Agbonlahor or Young, they are two excellent prospects.
Holroyd The obvious answer to this would be Gareth Barry, it seems Bazza fever has hit the nation and I can't help myself sweeping along with it. However as much as I like the way Barry plays, I think people are going a little over the top over him. So I am going to go with Ashley Young, whenever I have seen him he has impressed me and although the price tag you paid is a little hefty, I'd still fancy a punt. Can't see it being long before an England cap, he looks everything Theo Walcott was supposed to be. I'm a little cautious about the prospect of barrys shot from distance in the match however, with Wessels looking likely to continue in goal, he hasn't really been fully tested yet.
6) What is your opinion of Villa, Villa Park and Martin O'Neill and have you ever tried one of our balti pies?!
Dominic Fitzpatrick Villa Park reminds me of Goodison, it’s traditional and it can generate an excellent environment for a football match. Martin O’Neill is a talented manager, I think he could have done a bit more to build your team this summer, after all the funds where available.
Holroyd Villa seem to be coming back into a challenging side again now, but you are desperately short of a few more 'top quality' players. You have pace all over the field, but sometimes just don't show up, and I feel this is partly because some of the players Martin O'Neill plays aren't fit to wear the Villa shirt. I could see a top 10 finish for the Villains but can't see you making the UEFA slots.
Villa Park has always been a nice ground to go to, always a good day out and a friendly atmosphere, but it will be interesting to see the view now as they have moved the away support!
Martin O'Neill is a good man manager but I always think his buys can be a little suspect, particularly his persistence with these players even if they don't perform.
I've never had a Balti Pie a simply couldn't betray our 'Big Boy Pie' in such a way!!!
7) What is your prediction for the Sunday clash and are you as sick as me with football not kicking off at 3pm on a Saturday afternoon...!?
Dominic Fitzpatrick I am happy to play on a Sunday if it means playing UEFA cup football! I think it will be a scrappy 1-1 draw.
Holroyd I hate all these moved kick off times, and it's going to be even worse for us if we can go on a UEFA cup run, as we will always play on Sundays! I love the traditional 3pm Saturday game, you can get a proper match day experience out of it, and can go out and drown your sorrows that night after a lacklustre display you simply can't explain!
I expect us to do you over this time, Johnson is due a goal, so I am going to go with 2-0 Everton AJ with both.
With thanks to the lads from Vital Everton