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Saturday, 29th September 2001

Everton 5
West Ham United 0

by Vinny Ryan

On Wednesday of this week I decided to go to Everton - I wasn't going to go as our away form, and especially form at Everton is appalling. But I still went....

I was confident - we'd just beat Newcastle 3-0 and were looking like we were about to get it together.... But that was not to be the case.....

The team was announced and It was exactly how I thought we'd line up - Repka was suspended and replaced by Song.
For those who sing 'we've only got one Song', all I can say is thank God for that.

In the first 30 seconds I thouht we should have been 1-0 down after Song and Hislop looked shaky - again.

In the first 25 minutes we were far from spectacular, but really not at all bad . We had the best chance when Schemmel made a good run down the line and crossed it for Di Canio who contrived to miss from just a few yards out - and no, it wasn't an open goal as some people have made it out to be - but it was a very good chance. However, it seems to me that because of Di Canio's miss the rest of the game seemed to be Paolo's fault. Paolo was poor - but he was just as bad as everyone else.

Just before half time we conceded - and that was it for us. The goal had been coming - we had invited them to cross all day long, and when Watson got an opportunity he crossed for Campbell to head in from close range. That goal was scored on the stroke of half time and it really hit us hard. We were also imformed Spurs were 2-0 up at home to Man Utd.

We came out in the second half knowing that we need to get a goal quickly. And a goal did come - just not for us.

Everton wrapped up the points when a free kick was swung in and Hutchison and Hislop got themselves in a mess resulting in Hutchison scoring an own goal.

That was the most gutted I'd felt all season.

About 3 minutes later Gravesen was allowed to run past everyone - he never took anyone o, he just ran in the other direction before hitting a poor shot which somehow went past Shaka.

It was then it hit me - this could be the season we go down.

I looked around at the players and thought - do any of you actually care? What has happend to West Ham - how could we go from Europe to relegation so soon?

When I heard someone shout remarks at Di Canio - I thought - Why just him? How can you single out one player? How come no one can say anything about Hutchison or Carrick - how come Carrick is not allowed to be critised?

When Everton scored their fourth goal I left. It didn't really matter though - I had been left totally disillusioned.

Are we going down? Is it too early to predict?

Just a final point - once again the fans were outstanding and sung their hearts out. They were a credit to the club.

But we were all ashamed of the players.

Player Ratings:

Shaka Hislop (4) - Very poor - again.

Seb Schemmel (5) - Our best player.

Nigel Winterburn (4) - Out of his depth.

Bert Song (0) - So bad words can't describe.

Christian Dailly (3) - Got the chat of the day when someone sung " Christain Dailly is a football genius" - I thought it it was funny - just like Chistain Dailly - one big joke.

Laurent Courtois (3) - Not very good at all.

Michael Carrick (2) - Dreadful.

Don Hutchison (2) - Nothing to say about him.

Trevor Sinclair (3) - Oh! So he was playing!

Paolo Di Canio (4) - Blame it all on Di Canio seems to be the way with some fans. He was poor, yes - but not entirely to blame.

Fred Kanoute (3) - Drop him. No good to us at the moment.

Subs used:

Ragnvald Soma (Winterburn) - Saw him take 3 touches before I left.

Shaun Byrne (Courtois) - I had left.

Paul Kitson (Kanoute) - Never saw him come on either.

Unused subs:

Craig Forrest, Grant McCann

When you pay money and see your team lose 5-0 then you have a right to be unhappy.

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