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ToffeeLinks 03/10/2012: Baines The Player of the Month

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Steven Pienaar retires from International duty and Leighton Baines gets Everton's player of the month.

Michael Regan - Getty Images

If Tuesdays are slow, Wednesdays are even slower. The slowest newsday of the week (It is right smack in the middle though).

On to the links:

Everton's Steven Pienaar has told South Africa he has retired from international football | Mirror Online
"The 30-year-old Toffees star is focusing on his Goodison career now – though national boss hasn't given up on trying to convince him to return" --- Just in case you haven't seen it but it's yesterday's news as seen in the comment by (H/T) pearljamfan80 and darkbluejm15.

Everton FC keeper Tim Howard backs Steven Pienaar international retirement | Liverpool Echo
"Tim Howard hopes Steven Pienaar's retirement from international football can benefit Everton FC in the long term; and says he can fully understand his team-mate's decision."

Community-minded Tim Howard in good spirits as he targets Champions League football for Everton FC this season (VIDEO) - Everton FC News - Everton FC - Liverpool Echo
Tim Howard is involved in a community program called Kickz which has football training programs in "areas with high incidents of crime and anti-social behaviour".

One thing struck me more than anything - "Merseyside Police estimate the programme has contributed to a 79% reduction in crime in the targeted areas." If this is true, then it's truly insane that there aren't any more programs like these. Why don't we have these everywhere? The link also has a bunch of quotes from Howard and the clubs ambitions for the year.

Baines Is The September Star | evertonfc.com
Baines wins Everton's player of the month for September. He can probably technically win it any month, but this month there were probably a couple of people (Mirallas, Fellaini, Pienaar) that could have realistically won it. But Baines was the most consistent (no way!) without a bad game in between so he gets it.

A Pilgrimage: My Weekend Abroad to See an Everton Match | ToffeeWeb
Kind of a cool story (or journal entry) of a guy from Virginia travelling all the way to Liverpool just to watch Everton to take on Southampton.