Liverpool’s head man Rafa Benitez has called Everton a “small team” following his team’s disappointing 0-0 draw in the derby. It’s certainly true that we’re no longer “massive,” to use the EPL cliche. If we were, we wouldn’t be so happy with a draw achieved through defensive tactics. But a “small team?” I don’t think so.
English football has four giants — Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Arsenal. These are the clubs with the resources to bring in top foreign stars and (Man U excepted) fancy continental coaches like Benitez. After the big four, there’s no English side bigger than Everton. We had a top four finish (ahead of Liverpool, as a matter of fact) two years ago, and we’re currently ahead of every other club in the tier behind the big four. That includes the likes of Tottenham, Newcastle, Aston Villa, and Manchester City. And none of these clubs can match Everton’s history. In truth, a few years ago we were falling out of that tier, but that was before David Moyes became our manager. Now we’re so big that Sylvester Stallone is a supporter.
Instead of worrying about Everton’s status, Benitez should be asking himself why he decided to play without a left-winger on Saturday, thereby failing seriously to challenge our right back who was playing his first match since being injured months ago. On second thought, it’s comments like those from Benitez that help keep the derby what it is.
UPDATE by JOHN: Irrefutable proof that Stallone is, in fact, an Evertonian:
I dunno. That’s definitely an Everton scarf or whatever, but is it really Stallone? Yahoo says so, so it must be.
PAUL adds: Yes, it’s Sly. He now owns a small piece of the club, though he’s not invested enough to enable us to bring in a fancy Spanish manager like Benitez. Word is that Stallone cheered passionately for Everton and went crazy when we scored a late equalizer.
The slogan on our scarf, “the people’s club,” is a bit unfair to Liverpool. Their fans are people too. It’s just that so many of them live in Devon or Norway.
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