Everton at the time of writing are 18th in the Premier League. With the real threat of relegation looming, the question has become, why are Everton in such turmoil on and off the pitch? This is due to several reasons and none of them are new, for such a big club to decline it always takes time. The Toffees were consistently a team that finished just behind the big six but it is fair to say that they have significantly declined since the days of David Moyes.
Where Did It All Go Wrong for Everton Football Club
Poor Recruitment by Everton
Poor spending can ruin any team. In recent times Barcelona and Manchester United are prime examples of a team that’s suffered from poor transfer and administrative choices. Everton is no different as they have spent a fortune since 2016. The Toffees spent an astonishing £716.6 million on transfers from 2016 until the beginning of the 2023 January transfer window.
The 2017/2018 campaign saw the high spending continue, as they signed Cenk Tosun from Beskitas, and Davy Klaassen from Ajax, with neither purchase working out. Jordan Pickford has been a fine get for the team in the sense that he is a constant fixture in the team. Theo Walcott wasn’t a success, and neither was Gylfi Sigurdsson who was overpriced and not successful for more serious reasons.
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Wayne Rooney being reunited with his boyhood club was short-lived. The only player that Everton got the best out of was Michael Keane who is currently the captain and has been played often since he joined. All in all, there were few positive signs at Goodison Park.
This was the year they brought in Lucas Digne who turned out to be a great signing. However, players such as Andre Gomes, Kurt Zouma and Yerry Mina have not paid off. Richarlison from Watford for £35.2 million was a great signing at a good price. Unfortunately for The Toffees Digne is now at Aston Villa and Richarlison is at Tottenham Hotspur.
After that, Moise Kean, although a talented player, could not settle in Merseyside. Everton’s transfers were hit-and-miss, and the ones that were worth the money ended up leaving.
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To make matters worse, not only did they buy players for more than they were worth but they sold those players for peanuts. For instance, Tosun and Allan left for free.
As reported by the Guardian in 2022, Everton reported losses over the three previous seasons amounted to £371.8m. This will only cause problems in the future as they may not be able to bring in their ideal signings. Not only that, but if they go down and lose their key assets, they could experience problems similar to Derby County.
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Seeing an owner invest £500 million into the club and yet face relegation is baffling. It’s not how much you have but what you do with it and the Everton owner Farhad Moshiri has not used his money efficiently. While it is clear that he’s committed to the club and is funding a new stadium for the team, the entire hierarchy needs to operate more effectively to safeguard the future of the club.
The Appointment of Frank Lampard
Frank Lampard’s tenure at Goodison park was not a happy one. The results on the pitch were obviously not good enough, but the ex-Chelsea manager had to operate on a reduced budget while losing his best striker. He started his managerial career with Derby and nearly guided The Rams to the Premier League. After a promising start at Chelsea, which quickly disintegrated, Everton later decided to hire him. However, Lampard was always a gamble because of his lack of experience. The Toffees narrowly avoided relegation last season and performances haven’t improved this season, which led to Lampard’s sacking. Now with Sean Dyche in the dugout, the Everton board will be hoping he can add steel and determination to a team who have clearly struggled over the last 18 months.
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In summary, the Everton hierarchy have got it wrong too many times, whether that be managerial appointments, transfers, or the general running of the club. Those actions have consequences – and have been brewing for some time and have finally reached the surface. In the January transfer window, there have been no notable new signings. The departure of Anthony Gordon to Newcastle was a blow, but with Dyche now at the helm, Everton will be hoping results will improve.