I hold up my hands, I was wrong. When we were linked with him to replace the sacked McLeish, I was not keen, 100% wanted Lambert ahead of him. Well I was wrong.
I have been watching Everton this afternoon and what a difference to us! I wonder where we would be now if he had become our boss instead of Lambert 18 months ago.
in fairness though, he had a top 8 side when he took over, built on very solid foundations, and had some money from the Fellaini deal - which the club knew that they would get, i am pretty sure.
Bit of a difference to where we were when Lambert took over.
But, yes, Everton are a v.good side, and Martinez is a very astute manager.
He'd have had the same problems as Lambert. At Everton he inherited a very good squad, albeit an overly defensive one, which had a pedigree built up over the years. He had a pretty good foundation to build on. Which he is doing, very successfully; he's a top manager in my view. In fact, I'd say that at the moment he's a better manager than Moyes; Moyes may yet come good, but he's got some way to go.
At Villa he'd have been faced with an overpaid squad most of which were past their sell-by date, reluctant to attempt any progress towards a more modern style of football; look at the grief Houllier was given. Lambert went for the brave but maybe necessary route of a total clearout. I don't think Martinez would have done a lot different. Maybe he wouldn't have dropped Bent, maybe he could have got more out of Ireland and N'zogbia. But it's a pretty big maybe.
I think we were unlucky Houllier went. If he'd have stayed I could see players like Cabaye and similar coming in, and the dinosaurs like Dunne and Collins moved on. We'd have replaced Young, Downing would probably have stayed, and he'd have made full use of Bent. And I think there was enough confidence in him to have backed him, in a way which McLeish wasn't.
Instead we had McLeish, a stop-gap. Not much backing because I don't think the confidence was there. And the decline continued big-time, and the mess got worse. If they'd got Martinez instead of McLeish, I think it would have been a totally different ball game. I think Martinez would have changed things in the way Houllier wanted to, and I think more backing would have been there (he wouldn't have come otherwise, he's not stupid). But he was committed to Wigan for another year, so didn't. By the time McLeish was sacked, there was a huge mess facing whoever came in. Would he have done better than Lambert? Don't know. Maybe. But a huge challenge for either.
please no more Houllier talk. he was woeful, and the quicker i forget him, the better.