Last summer proved to be a disappointing one for Everton. The arrival of Farhad Moshiri earlier in the year had promised exciting things in the transfer window but they failed to materialise.
Big money was spent on Yannick Bolasie but the reality was that the Blues plugged the gaps with short-term options for this campaign.
They had been expected to flex their muscles but the majority of the spending was done with the funds accrued from John Stones’ move to Manchester City.
Yet, it was overlooked and excuses were made. Ronald Koeman and new Director of Football Steve Walsh were new to the club; even Moshiri hadn’t been around that long. Financial Fair Play rules were against us, etcetera.
The club was given some leeway because of these factors working against them. They will be given no such manoeuvre room this summer. Those in charge cannot hide behind the excuses this time.
It’s going to become a frustrating catchphrase for the Blues for the duration of the transfer window but this summer is going to be a big one. It simply has to be.
A look at the current squad shows that at least four first teamers are needed. Numerous signings are also required to fill out the substitutes bench, regardless of the title winning under 23’s potentially making the step up.
These signings do not have to be superstars but they must be of better quality than what was offered last year otherwise doubts will start to creep in.
It’s all well and good making smart signings like Idrissa Gana Gueye but Evertonians need an exciting signing to cling onto.
They also need that signing to make them certain of the trio currently in power at Goodison Park, Steve Walsh, Ronald Koeman and Farhad Moshiri. If they cannot provide the signings Everton need, questions will be justifiably asked.
That is why the summer is not just a big one in terms of improving the squad; it is a big one in terms of convincing everyone, even those outside the club, that they mean business.
Patience is needed because things are likely to be drawn out, they always are when Everton are concerned, but if they can do it even the biggest naysayers may start to change their stance.
Hold your nerve, silly season is about to start and the Blues are going to be in the eye of the storm.
The shape they are in at the end of it will be the clearest indicator yet of whether the future is indeed bright.