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Allardyce hanging on at Everton, like a stubborn leech

This is his biggest payday after all, and milk it he will

Everton v Leicester City - Premier League Photo by Mark Robinson/Getty Images

After showing up half an hour late for his own press conference, Everton manager Sam Allardyce’s latest comments are only going to further infuriate a fanbase that is already weary of his excuses and defiance.

When asked if his future at the Toffees was under threat following the uninspiring football we’ve been seeing, the manager was stubborn.

“I think I’ve answered this question many times. I’m here as long as I win football matches. If you don’t, it doesn’t matter how long your contract is, you lose your job.

”At the moment we’re in a very good position and I’m slightly surprised by the speculation. The two differences are we’re not good enough away from home but we’re good enough at home.

”Look where we started down in the bottom end with everybody talking about relegation to where we are now, despite Burnley’s magnificent season means that if we beat them we’re level on points with them on Saturday. That’s the realistic point of view for me, all the other speculation will go on, it happens.

”The away form is a long standing problem, it’s not something that has only arrived with my tenure. It’s been there for a while and my job is to sort the away results out. 2017 was only two games won. 2016/17, it’s been 7 games in two years. It’s been there a while and my job is to sort the away results out.

“We were very close to a result at Watford, we made one slip up and it cost us a point.”

This avoidance of responsibility is nothing new for Allardyce, who has lately taken to evading questions and blaming just about everyone else but himself. The dull and frankly unwatchable football has been a key point of contention, and he dismissed that too.

“Style of football, for me, is about a team going onto the pitch and playing to it’s best to win the game of football.

“What style suits the players? The players responsibility within that system is to play to the highest level. If that doesn’t happen you need to change team selection or shape of the team.

“Style of play hasn’t been an issue apart from a legacy laid on my name ten years ago. Style of play is about all eleven players showing their commitment to the football club, performing better than the opposition and coming out with the win.”

Time to talk Burnley Football Club (A)...

Posted by Everton Football Club on Friday, March 2, 2018

If Blues needed Allardyce to summarize his utter blitheness about the role he has taken on at the Toffees in just a few lines, then this was it, when asked about the pressure to deliver results at Everton.

“The pressure at Everton is the same as Newcastle and West Ham United, but they’ve won a lot more in past years here. But there’s the same at West Ham and Newcastle. They have lots of fans that want to see the club win things and Everton are the same. You have to try and build a team to get success back.

“At this moment in time that would be writing this season off by getting safe and making sure you’re in a better position to compete for something next season, like European football again or a Cup final.

“That’s the sort of ambition we have to go for. I’ve only been here a couple of months and there’s a lot of difficulties you have to go through. We had 38 players, and had to reduce the playing squad by getting - I think there’s fourteen now - out on loan and now we can work better with the players on a day-to-day basis.”

Barely stifling yawns throughout the press conference, Allardyce’s smug dismissal of questions about his future or style of play is indeed worrying for fans already concerned with what assurances he received from Farhad Moshiri when he took on this job.

As for the comparisons with Newcastle and West Ham (who have both been relegated in just this decade), that was the ultimate sign of Allardyce’s lack of ambition and sheer lack of understanding that he has been brought into a club that is looking to establish itself in the top six, and he certainly does not possess the footballing brain or drive to be the person to do it.