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The case for Marco Silva at Everton

Thursday 24th May 2018

So the great managerial merry-go-round has whirred into action at Everton. Sam Allardyce is out and a new man will be in post-haste. That new man appears to be Marco Silva.

The Portuguese manager was the prime target to replace Ronald Koeman in November and it appears that has not changed.

Doubts still remain about Silva, even more so after the manner in which Watford collapsed following his failed move to Goodison Park.

His detractors point to the fact that Hull City were still relegated under his leadership while Watford were on their way to the same fate before he departed.

Yet Moshiri remains as keen as he was seven months ago despite the detractions that some feel should make him look elsewhere. The Iranian businessman knows that Silva represents the best option at this moment in time.

The last time Everton were truly competing for a top-four place was under Roberto Martinez in 2013/14.

Martinez too was a manager that had a distinct philosophy with an attacking style that won many plaudits. He too, though, was a man who many a doubt had been raised about.

However, that style took Everton to one of their best seasons ever and within seven points of a top-four finish by the end of that campaign.

In the four years since the top four has become the top six but the way to get into it remains the same. In a league dominated by attacking flair at the top end of the table, copying it is the best manner in which to compete.

Under Allardyce, it was proven time and time again that a defensive approach was not the way to compete. In all the meetings with the top six, Everton simply didn’t.

If you want to beat them, you have to join them and Silva is the best option available to do that. His short stint at Watford proved, if only in a small period, that he is a man capable of doing it.

With a better, more talented squad of players at his disposal at Goodison Park his philosophy could flourish.

He is not a man with a track record of failure, either. Ask fans of Estoril, Sporting and Olympiakos and they will give glowing reviews. The same can be said of the majority of Watford fans.

It goes beyond both of those things, though. Everton is a club whose fans are more disconnected from their club than they have ever been.

In the past, their club was one that was synonymous with good, attractive football and earned the moniker as the School of Science as a result.

Under Allardyce and indeed partly under Koeman that was stripped away and they were not impressed by what was left behind. They do not want Barcelona or Manchester City levels of football, they are realistic, but they do want entertainment.

It is the least that a football fan should expect never mind those of the fourth most successful club in England.

For clubs such as Everton, who know they are unlikely to win the title and have to enjoy an excellent season to secure Europe or pick up an FA Cup or League Cup, entertainment should be the principal aim.

Everton and success were synonymous in years gone by but while that is not being delivered they must have the fall back of attractive football. It is something which success-starved fans can identify.

Merely hoping to survive is not a long-term solution or something that sells season tickets. Consistency is sold as a success in the Premier League era but that is not the case for a club like Everton.

In that regard, Silva is again the best man available to turn things around.

He may not be able to get Everton into the top six or winning titles once again but finishing as the best of the rest playing good football is at least something. It is significantly better than doing so in the manner Allardyce did. 

Last season was one with no highlights for Everton fans but under Silva they will be given something, even if they finish 8th once again. Fans will back a team that, at the very minimum, tries to be better.

That is very much the case at Goodison Park where the Dogs of War or David Moyes’ underdogs remain far better thought of than the expensively assembled squad of now.

Under Allardyce, they never tried to be better but Silva is an ambitious manager and sets his team out to play in a similarly ambitious fashion.  

Farhad Moshiri knows as much and that is why he is still keen to hire him. He may not be the biggest name or the safe but he represents the best option on multiple fronts.

If the least he does is gets Everton playing a style of football that has the fans proud to be supporters again, then he will have already succeeded where Allardyce drastically failed.

Sean Lunt

Football journalist working in the North West mainly covering Everton and Liverpool but with musings on anything football related. 

Total articles: 110

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