One city, two tribes

The old saying goes that there’s more than one way to skin a cat. This was most certainly the case as Everton tallied up yet another victory at Goodison Park. Gone was the free-flowing dynamism from L4’s resident samba merchants, minus one sumptuous through ball from Bernard to Sigurdsson which the Icelander failed to convert. In its place came a more laboured effort from Marco’s burgeoning side. To a great extent we can attribute the change in flow to Saturday’s opponents and their apparent lack of willing to engage in a game of football. In a match that bared more resemblance to a war of attrition, with the forces of Everton standing virtually as the games only aggressors, it was the Toffee’s who emerged victorious. With the still relatively young tenure of Silva now firmly up and running, we look forward to greater tests of our resolve. Nevertheless, from every battle emerges a hero. This weeks’ offering, and Commander-in-chief of our midfield was one Andre Gomes.

What a player this lad is. In a match characterized by erroneous passing, and staggered link up play, Gomes was as a burning ray of sunshine, navigating the plains of Goodison like a Cheetah around the plains of Africa. Elegant, smooth, but with deadly penetration. That ability to cut through opposition defences, beginning all the way on the edge of our own box is a skill that has been lacking at Goodison for countless years. That old sporting adage is that the great ones make the players around them better. As we review Mr Gueye’s sublime displays thus far this season, he stands in stark contrast to the shadow he presented of himself last. The common denominator? Gomes. That’s not to say that Silva, Brands et al. Don’t deserve credit either. But the eye ball test is all that fans are ultimately concerned about when forking out money for a day out watching the blues.

Thanks to the blues, County road doesn’t half seem sound these day’s doesn’t it? Those £2 ever-so-slightly stale pints taste like nectar, and personally I think the adhesive thick film layering the floors of certain establishment’s just adds’ character. Said no interior designer ever.

Oh I feel like, singing the blues…

Oh it’s bliss being a blue at the minute. Who’s next then? Oh right, yeah. Que Evertonian pessimism. Sunday’s supposed to be God’s day, so I’m told, and if our recent record is anything to go by, divine intervention may well be required in order to overcome our most irritating of rivals. It is true, we have suffered at their hands before. Many a display has ended in ignominious defeat, bereft of anything other than a stale taste in the mouth. But there’s something a bit different about this Everton team. Even the oh-so-lovable, eccentric caricature from across the park said so. Speaking of which, he lost it a bit this week didn’t he? It’s always enjoyable to see the slipping of the mask from the media’s darling, and those poncy histrionics on display especially in a derby week. And when compared to the calm and composed gaffer at the helm at Goodison, I must say I enjoy the lack of circus. Maybe because I’m dull. Perhaps, because I’m bitter. Either way, I take great satisfaction in anything resembling a Kloppite meltdown.

On to the game then, and what should we expect? Well, it’s always hard to tell at their place. And despite my hyperbole, it will be a tough one. Gomes and Gueye will be key components to the would-be heist, especially in the break down and nullifying any space available to their front three. Our full back’s need to be on their game, ensuring that their marauding runs are supplemented by balanced defensive work, and tactical astuteness. Other than that? We offer genuine threats, and real pace which is something we haven’t taken there in a while. selection should be almost identical to that of the Cardiff encounter. Perhaps Lookman might get the nod over Walcott, certainly when hearing the positive reviews given by the boss in his pre-match discussion. It would be quite the vote of confidence from the manager, who has used the youngster predominately in an impact capacity during the course of this season. Whatever Marco opts for, we know that it will offer a vitality that seems a million miles away from last seasons’ offering.

As we conclude this brief but hopefully light piece of entertainment, we can believe that morale in the camp is high. We should go to ex-digs with a smile on our face, and proud of who we are. We are Everton, are we’re fckin sound.

In a Moshiri masterclass of PR pettiness the likes of which will bring a smirk to the most level headed of Evertonian, the Liver birds are now blue. Now it’s down to Marco and the boys to ensure the city is, too.

Until next time, and always. Up the toffees.

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