'I expected more from Koeman - I can't see him being in the Everton job by Christmas'

  • 13 day ago
  • 2 views

We've got a real treat for you on View from the Gwladys Street this week as we speak to broadcasting legend and lifelong Blue Elton Welsby.

Elton started out with Radio City in the 1970s before moving to Granada Television and becoming ITV's presenter on The Match and one of football's most recognisable faces and voices off the pitch.

Where are you at right now with Ronald Koeman?

I think he is doing a very poor job and I can't see him being in the job by Christmas.

I know what he was trying to do. He was trying to reinvent total football, the Dutch blueprint if you like and it's just not worked.

Ronald is a disciple of Johan Cruyff – who was a genius not just as a player but as a coach – and I expected so much more.

I think he's been hugely disappointing and I get the impression that his man-management skills aren't terrific.

Ronald Koeman is a man under scrutiny

So when he first came in, did you expect great things from him?

I certainly did... and I liked the targets he was going for.

I saw Davy Klaassen play for Ajax in the Europa League final and although Manchester United won that game he looked like the one bright spark in that Ajax team.

I've not seen anything since.

How does Koeman fit Klaassen, Wayne Rooney and Gylfi Sigurdsson into the same team?

That's a question he couldn't answer, or he doesn't seem capable of answering.

We saw how effective Sigurdsson was in a central role in the Iceland game the other night, you can't play him out wide.

He's quality, he's got to play in the number 10 role no questions – so where does that leave Rooney?

We haven't got a striker. Over the summer Olivier Giroud was very close to joining apparently, I think it was Mrs Giroud who put the kibosh on that one from what I understand but we – or Steve Walsh should I say – should have had a Plan B.

You don't replace 25 goals a season with a trio, or quartet depending on what happens to Ross Barkley, of number 10s. It just doesn't work.

There's no pace. Why isn't Ademola Lookman playing? Has he fallen out with Lookman or Lookman has fallen out with him?

With Yannick Bolasie still a while off coming back we're crying out for an injection of pace – it beggars belief.

How do you view Wayne Rooney's return to Everton?

Wayne has scored three goals so far but he's not a number nine any more, he's just not.

I think there's still a role for him but I think it's even deeper than a number 10 role.

When the plan was put in place – the Dutch blueprint if you like – I saw Rooney being the 'Cruyff', the guy who just directed traffic and went wherever he wanted.

I still think he can do that – but not the number 10.

He can operate just in front of the back four or a little bit further forward then fine because he's got huge acumen and a wonderful football brain.

He's intelligent enough to work it out, to get out on the pitch and do what you think you should.

Don't be strapped to a number 10 or number 9 role, see what's going on and then adapt, that's exactly what Cruyff did.

That's what I thought when Koeman was building his squad, this is what he's aiming at – total football.

But it's just not happening.

Wayne Rooney of Everton looks dejected after Apollon Limassol score their second goal

How would you organise the midfield?

Tom Davies has got to start, none of this messing him about, which makes you think about Morgan Schneiderlin, I've got my doubts.

I can't put my finger on why he's not performing the way he should but I don't think Koeman can either and really should, he's the manager.

Idrissa Gueye is fine. He's functional. He performs a function for the team and I don't think we can do without it.

Gueye and Schneiderlin together can shore up a lot of holes in front of the defence but you've got to have the pace to exploit the opposition with someone up front who can either score goals or at least hold the ball up.

What about the strikers he has got?

I think that Dominic Calvert-Lewin will be a great player for Everton, I really do.

As for Sandro Ramirez, the jury is out.

He was rated as the best young number 9 in Spain and we got him for just over £5million so that's worth a punt.

You don't earn a reputation like that in Spain unless you've got ability which he clearly has.

He's not settled yet but that's not to say that he won't.

The nucleus of a squad to compete at all levels is definitely there but I don't think they're being utilised right.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin of Everton celebrates scoring his opening goal against Sunderland

Koeman signed a three-year contract but there's never really been a hint that he'd stay beyond that, has that created a degree of uncertainty?

Whether it's after-match interviews or on the touchline, I don't like his demeanour.

You compare that to Duncan Ferguson when Oumar Niasse scored his first goal against Bournemouth – blimey.

Duncan was off the bench, punching the air and leaping about.

That's what Evertonians want to see.

If Koeman goes, which I think he will in the not-too-distant future, I'd bring David Unsworth and Ferguson in for the interim period.

You've got two massive Evertonians there and let's face it if players weren't playing for the shirt, woe betide them because one of those two would duff them up – you'd be scared not to play well.

My personal favourite is Sean Dyche at Burnley.

Burnley manager Sean Dyche

There is a question mark over whether he can handle the upgrade and the greater budget but I think he instills passion and organisation.

He's working on a shoestring at Burnley and has kept them in the division last season and it looks barring an awful run of results he'll keep them in the division again.

That's not Everton though. We've got to be better than that and he's got to be better than that to manage Everton but I think he's got it in him.

He's a man with no ego, which I believe Koeman has.

But he's got passion, drive, acumen and organisational skills, he's the one for me.

It would be a little bit of a gamble – it's not like you're hiring Jose Mourinho – but sometimes you've got to take a bit of a chance.

We thought we'd hit gold by getting Koeman. Wrong!

All this means it's a massive game at Brighton, how do you see that one shaping up?

It depends which way you look at it.

It could accelerate Koeman's departure or it could be a corner turned.

I'm not saying I want us to lose – good heavens – but if for example we got mullered then it might speed up the process of getting rid of Koeman and let's face it, money is not object to Farhad Moshiri.

Ronald Koeman and Farhad Moshiri

Looking at the bigger picture, are you excited to be an Evertonian at the moment?

Oh I'm always excited to be an Evertonian – crikey.

My first game at Goodison was against Cardiff in April 1962 and we beat them 8-3.

I was hooked. Primarily on a little guy wearing the number nine shirt with blond hair, no taller than myself – Alex Young.

He just orchestrated that game. I fell in love with Everton – and him – on the same day, all those years ago.

Does the proposed stadium move to Bramley Moore Dock fill you with anticipation?

Kind of. I'm a bit of a dinosaur, I'll be awful sorry to say goodbye to Goodison.

Like Arsenal's move from Highbury to the Emirates, the increase in revenue will be staggering.

I can see that but I'll still be very sad.

For about 10 years until I started working in the media I was going home and away.

What was it like covering Everton games on television when you had to be impartial?

I didn't find it a problem. You just have to be professional.

I was on Radio City between 1974-78 and Liverpool were doing everything under Bob Paisley.

People didn't think I could possibly be anything other than a Liverpudlian but it's professionalism.

You can't deny brilliance whether it's Liverpool or anyone else and have to do you job.

Elton Welsby was a household name in the 1980s and 90s, thanks to 'The Match'

Do you have best and worst game from those you covered?

I can give you both.

The best was Bayern Munich. That was unbelievable.

The worst the 1986 FA Cup final.

I was sat next to Jimmy Greaves. When Gary Lineker put us one up I was like a coiled spring.

I remember Greavesie put his hand on my knee and said: “Don't worry son, no problem, it's all boxed off.”

The next minute Gary Stevens gave it away to Jan Molby and 'boomf' we were heading to an inevitable defeat.

Of course I was working that day and had to come over as a neutral.