Thursday, November 14, 2019

Can Marco Silva turn things around at Everton?

David Nugent in Editorial, English Premier League 28 Jan 2019

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Apparently, Everton head coach Marco Silva is a bright young tactical genius who will be a top boss one day. He has been lauded within the game for the past few years.

Yet, little of that tactical genius has been on display for Everton in recent months. A last minute 3-2 defeat at Millwall in the FA Cup fourth round on Saturday just summed up the Toffees of late. The fact that Millwall scored their second goal via a handball mattered little to the Evertonian’s, such was the depth of their anger and disappointment at their team’s latest collapse.

Zonal marking a massive problem

As an Evertonian, it is hard to sit and watch the Blues making the same mistakes repeatedly. The biggest bugbear of late for the Toffees is zonal marking. Silva likes to use zonal marking on set pieces.

Zonal marking may work well when the players are capable of playing it properly. However, it is obvious to all watching Everton that none of the centre-backs can use the zonal marking system. Millwall scored three goals from set pieces.

The third goal saw Millwall defender Murray Wallace standing completely unmarked in the five-yard box. In fact, there were three Lions players standing in position to get on the ball, with hardly an Everton player in sight. The lack of ability of the Toffees defenders to use the zonal marking system has cost them all season. Silva needs to change the system or his team will continue to concede very easy to avoid goals.

Can Silva motivate the players?

When the likes of Richarlison and Andre Gomes arrived at the club in the summer, they cited Marco Silva’s presence at the club as a big motivation in deciding to join the Merseysiders.

From the outside, Silva seems to lack the sort of charisma that inspires and motivates. Good bosses bring the best out of players, which is why some teams overachieve with poor players.

Looking at the Everton squad, it is full of expensive and talented players. However, something is just not right amongst them. Players seem to be low on confidence and even the brighter players from earlier in the campaign are struggling to find their form.

Silva has shown very little in his time at Hull or Watford to suggest he has the ability to motivate players for more than a few months. His reigns tend to start brightly before tailing off, just as it is at the minute at Everton. The next few months will be a massive test of the Portuguese boss’s managerial acumen and mental resolve.

Silva is now one of the favourites to leave his job

Marco Silva is now odds of 3/1 to be the next Premier League boss to lose his job. Only Leicester’s Claude Puel is shorter odds.

Everton fans were divided on Silva’s appointment at the beginning of the season. However, the majority decided to back him and hope he could bring around the change needed in the team.

The early signs of his reign were positive. However, a terrible few months has many questioning whether the club should sack Silva after less than a year in charge. Most supporters want stability after a hectic few years of managerial changes at the Merseyside club. However, Marco Silva needs to prove that he can be the man to take the team forward.

Everton fans are witnessing a team that cannot pass a ball a few yards to a teammate, while struggling to defend the most basic of set pieces. There has even been talk amongst Evertonian’s that the team may be dragged into the relegation battle. It seems unlikely, but not impossible.

The next few games at Huddersfield on Tuesday night and a home game with Wolves at the weekend now look vital. These games could decide whether Silva stays or leaves.

If the team continues to produce the dross it has been producing in recent months, then the Portuguese boss will be the latest boss to fail in one of the most difficult jobs in English football and leave the club.

Can Marco Silva turn things around at Everton?


David Nugent

David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.



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