Actions, words, louder, Tony Morley and fighting talk from Marouane Fellaini

Where to begin? There is a match preview coming up tomorrow but before that we've got an Everton player, who is actually playing quite well this season, talking the talk before the match on Sunday. We all know what can happen when a player comes out and starts talking big.

Okay, you might not actually call it fighting talk from Marouane Fellaini, but he's warning us that they're coming to take fifth. He's also quite complimentary about our good season, but he reckons teams have figured out how to play against us.


I'm actually hoping for a surprise this weekend from our manager, because I reckon Fellaini is close to spot on and teams have figured out where our strengths were and they're playing it against us. Matches against Manchester City and Spurs spring to mind.

They’re not fifth for no reason. I think they've had a great season, particularly in the first half of the season.

Maybe now, in the second half of the season, they are finding it a little bit more difficult, as maybe teams are finding out a little bit more on how to play against them – but you can't take away it’s been a top season for them.
Marouane Fellaini, April 8th 2009

Moving on, before I get to the best part of my post today, Tony Morley (one of my boyhood heroes) reckons Martin O'Neill and Gollum are on a par, in terms of their abilities as football club managers.

It's not surprising Morley has a word or two to say on this subject as he was an Everton fan growing up and well, he's one of ours now, so it would be quite interesting to know who he will be cheering on on Sunday. I could take this a little further but I won't.

David Moyes has done a fantastic job and I'd put him and Martin O'Neill on a par. It's going to be interesting when they play each other. I can't see it being a great game but it's going to be a vital one. If Villa beat them I think it will put them right out of the race.
Tony Morley, April 8th, 2009

What Morley doesn't say, is that if Everton beat us, then we are pretty much out of the race, if Arsenal win. But I suppose we're not going to see something like that on the club site.

Now, this is the part which might cause a bit of banter today. It's the Martin O'Neill dinner for the fans that travelled to Moscow debate.

Graham Taylor says it's an admission of guilt and The Mirror even claimed yesterday that Martin O'Neill is paying for it out of his own money. Martin O'Neill has denied that and he's also denying that it's not an admission of guilt, but a 'club function' to reward the fans that travelled.

Well, actions speak louder than words Mr O'Neill. You might say it's not an admission of guilt but that is what it looks like, but if it is not an admission of guilt, when are you going to contact the thousands of fans that travelled to Anfield and arrange a 'club function' for them?

I don't mean to get on his back, but what he did in Moscow was wrong and many voiced those concerns before hand and well, it didn't make sense at the time and it still doesn't. Much like playing four in midfield doesn't work when you are playing against five or changing a successful team or changing a winning team in a game.

I'm actually not getting on his back, but this dinner thing is sort of setting a precedent that if there is a bad loss away from home you'll get dinner and drinks with the club. Where do you draw the line, does it need to have a minimum of first team players or does the result have to be x number of goals?

What I mean is, if it doesn't happen every time we get thrashed away from home then all it is doing is sort of confirming that the dinner for the supporters who travelled to Moscow is an admission of guilt, or are the fans that travelled to Liverpool not as loyal?

Martin O'Neill has to basically chalk this up as a mistake and move on. He can't comment on it because every time he does, he's just going to get an opinion from me and every one else. If this comes up again, he just has to say nothing - it was a mistake, he'll learn from it and we should move in.

Still, I'm not going to drink beer tonight watching the football. That's what I'm going to tell the wife anyway, because when I get home from the football, she'll be in bed and I'll be more likely to fall asleep on the sofa than make it to bed and give her good reason to shout at me in the morning. Just because I tell her, doesn't mean she doesn't really know that I am going to have a beer. Stop talking about it Martin.