Sunday, September 04, 2005

Last of the summer whine

It seems that not everyone was so thrilled as us at our capture of St Michael:

"In attempting to sign Michael Owen, Moyes showed commendable ambition and spirit. It was sad that the player didn’t want to come, and I wonder if the astronomical wages he will pick up on his short stay in Newcastle are a consolation for European football on offer at Goodison Park? His press conference at Newcastle told enough about that decision. Faced with nowhere else to go, and offered even more money than he was on as a bench warmer at Madrid, Owen spewed out the usual platitudes, then signed his contract which, rumour has it, contains an escape clause if someone bids £12 million, some £4 million LESS than the Magpies signed him for. I hope that’s true. I despise that 'giant' of a football club with a passion. Who can remember the North East giants, with one club in the city attracting less than 9,000 in Division 2 when they were this close to being relegated under the astute tactical genius that is Ossie Ardilles" [sic] ?".

Anyone catch that unmistakeable whiff of sour grapes? Unsurprising, I guess, when even with the attraction of Champions' League European football the mighty Everton have been pipped by us in the transfer market on no fewer than three occasions this summer. Of course, our ability to offer more appealing wage packets and stump up bigger transfer fees has been a factor in the capture of Owen, Parker and Emre - but we're also able to match their ambitions, something Everton couldn't do. "Moyes showed commendable ambition and spirit"? Laughable optimism, more like.

Incidentally this is the Toffees' first European adventure for years, during which time we've routinely qualified for Europe. One swallow does not a summer make. Delusions of grandeur perchance? In any case, that "adventure" is likely to amount to little more than a couple of away days when Dinamo Bucharest finish the job Villareal started and deposit Moyes's thuggish cloggers on their overachieving backsides with nothing to look forward to except living in Liverpool's shadow for another season.

And as for the "less than 9,000" comment - as with everything else, may we kindly recommend that you reconcile yourself with facts and reality? Thank you.


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