It’s an exciting new era for the Belgian national football team.
Roberto Martinez’s appointment as head coach didn’t have too many fans jumping for joy. First assistant coach Graeme Jones wasn’t the biggest draw either. But the announcement of Thierry Henry’s recruitment shocked and delighted Belgians in equal measure.
The Arsenal legend is going to be the team’s second assistant coach. Many of the regular attackers have spoken out in favour of his appointment with Michy Batshuayi paying tribute to him on Twitter.
Message for the fans
Now the new coaching staff have a message for supporters ahead of their first game. They face a Spain side adjusting to the post-Vicente Del Bosque era in a friendly tonight before meeting Cyprus for a World Cup qualifier. Hear them out by watching the video below.
The news that Thierry Henry was going to become the Belgium assistant manager came as a shock on Friday morning. Nobody had seen it coming. Then again, it’s not as though we were speculating on a daily basis about where Henry would end up. To clarify, the shock didn’t stem from the fact that the Arsenal legend seems like a bad coach. Nothing like that at all.
It just seemed very random, didn’t it? Well, maybe it shouldn’t have.
Belgium boss Roberto Martinez has explained to journalists why Henry was always the perfect candidate for the job.
The ideal candidate
A winner of the World Cup and European Championships with France, Henry knows how to conquer the international stage. He was a member of a team that had to change their mentality, Martinez pointing to the period leading up to the World Cup in 1998.
As well as passing on this experience, his work on a one-on-one basis will be invaluable.
Much to the surprise of just about everybody, Roberto Martinez was announced as the new Belgium manager today.
Having sacked Marc Wilmots in the wake of their Euro 2016 quarter-final exit at the hands of Wales, the Belgian FA were on the hunt for a new manager, and they’ve gone for Roberto Martinez, of all people.
Given that his most recent experience ended in an unceremonious sacking, it’s hard to fathom how Martinez could land such a big job.
Romelu Lukaku not best pleased?
And this footage appears to show that Romelu Lukaku is not best pleased.
Sitting on the Old Trafford bench during Wayne Rooney’s testimonial tonight, Lukaku put his head in his hands right after the announcement had been made.
He then turns to Ross Barkley, murmurs something, to which Barkley replies ‘No way.’
We then see Lukaku whispering something in Kevin Mirallas’ ear in the tunnel…
Considering how quickly word spreads around football grounds, it’s entirely plausible that Lukaku had just heard the Martinez news, and it doesn’t bode well for the Spaniard.
Belgium announced the appointment of Roberto Martinez as their new manager tonight, much to the general shock of the football world.
Having parted ways with Marc Wilmots after their disappointing Euro 2016 campaign which saw them exit at the hands of Wales in the quarter-finals, the Belgian FA were on the lookout for a new manager, and didn’t waste much time in appointing Wilmots’ successor.
While they should be credited for their speed, their actual choice of manager should really be questioned.
Having been sacked by Everton just before the end of last season, Martinez’s stock has never been so low.
Once hailed as the face of the new young modern manager, Martinez is more associated with comical defending and endless excuses these days.
He somehow managed to turn a talented Everton side into a shambles last season, his biggest success in his career is an FA Cup win with Wigan, and he’s now been handed one of the biggest jobs in international football.
The Guardian claim the scoop on the story that everyone was expecting: after losing once again in embarrassing fashion at Sunderland last night, it really only looked like a matter of time before the club hierarchy made the inevitable decision.
Martinez arrived at Goodison Park amid much hope, promise and dreams, but those dreams turned out to be piped ones, as he badly failed to get the best out of his talented squad.
Aside from a few flashes of attacking brilliance, the most noteworthy aspect of the Toffees’ play under Martinez has been their sheer inability to defend.
That said, while his sacking did look inevitable, it seems a bit strange and callous to sack him with one game remaining in the season; why not just let him finish out the season with dignity?
The Guardian claim that the decision has been taken and that Martinez has been informed, and that the official announcement will be made once all the terms are agreed.
What a calamitous cock-up this is. Everton were showing fan tweets on their Fan Zone screen at Goodison Park in a feature that wasn’t very well thought out. The mood around the club is hardly harmonious.
Either they’ve got a buffoon in charge of the fan zone screen or they have a programme that can’t detect negative messages because several calls for Roberto Martinez to go made it on to the screen.
Daily Mail journalist and Everton season ticket holder Joe Strange recorded it below.
According to the Daily Express, Germany manager Joachim Low is the new favourite to replace Roberto Martinez as manager of Everton football club.
With many supporters calling for Martinez be sacked, his future at Goodison park looks bleak to say the least. Everton haven’t had the strongest campaign and have found themselves in the bottom half of the table this season.
Martinez still has three years left on his contract with the Toffees, but has admitted that he has received no assurances from the club that he will still be in charge come next season.
Infact, when questioned on whether he had received any assurances, Martinez stated: “No, no, no. I’ve been given no indication whatsoever. Clearly, that’s not in my hands and that’s not a question I can answer.”
With that being said, the bookies have slashed the odds on Martinez being replaced by Germany coach Joachim Low, in the summer.
Low is now 2/1 to be the next Everton manager – slashed from 20/1 – and a statement from Betfair read: “Soon to be out-of-work Manuel Pellegrini had been the 5/2 favourite to take over at Goodison Park with David Moyes 4/1 second favourite but after an avalanche of bets came in for the Joachim Low, the German manager has been slashed from 33/1 to 2/1 favourite.
“Everton will certainly be making a statement of intent about next season if they have managed to secure a World Cup winning manager.”
Everton are lining up Mark Hughes to take over from Roberto Martinez, according to tomorrow’s Mirror.
Martinez is really under the cosh at Goodison for failing to deliver on all the promise of last season; his young and talented squad are languishing in the bottom half of the Premier League table, when they should really be competing for the European places.
Granted, Martinez did take them on a good FA Cup run, where they were eventually beaten by Manchester United in the semi-final, but that run merely papered over the cracks.
The simple truth is that Martinez’s side are abysmal at defending, and lack direction in midfield, and it seems Everton now want to bring in the more austere and realistic Mark Hughes to take over.
Hughes has done a decent job at Stoke, and would probably fancy the chance at a bigger club, having been sacked by Manchester City so acrimoniously.
Also on the clip below, LVG reveals that Manchester United practised penalties in training ahead of the Everton FA Cup semi-finals.
Louis van Gaal: “Yesterday we also exercised our penalties. 20 penalties were taken and Sergio Romero stopped one and David De Gea (stopped) zero. But today it was the most important penalty that he stopped.”
Question: Who missed?
LVG: “Not so interesting. Always negative. Why not (look at it) as positive for Sergio (which) it can also be.”
After Louis van Gaal on the clip below is Everton boss Roberto Martinez, who undoubtedly faces the sack after a poor season at Goodison Park…
Roberto Martinez finds himself under more pressure than ever tonight, having watched his Everton side slump to a 4-0 defeat to Liverpool in the Merseyside derby.
The Spaniard has been heavily criticized all season for failing to get the best out of his talented squad, and for always insisting that they play ‘the right way’ to the detriment of organized defending.
But credit to Martinez, he made no bones about criticizing Funes Mori, who was sent off for an awful challenge on Divock Origi.
A series of tweets have since been shared by Everton fans, as club chairman Bill Kenwright and new owner Farhad Moshiri spoke to fans on a train over the weekend about Martinez and his future at the club.
The power brokers at Goodison Park have confirmed that Martinez is staying put, and he won’t be sacked this summer.
Moreover, the club plan to back to Spanish boss with significant investment over the summer.
Everton still have the chance of finishing the season with a trophy, as they face Man United in the semifinal of the FA Cup this weekend.
See the tweets on Roberto Martinez’s standing at Everton below.
On train with Moshri AND kenright – photos will happen!
Given that Everton are without a win in their last 5 Premier League games, it isn’t difficult to see why Toffee fans aren’t impressed. There has been lots of protests over manager Roberto Martinez and many fans believe that the Spaniard should be given his marching orders.
Everton currently sit 12th in the Premier League table – 12 points away from a european spot – and many people have questioned where the club is going from here. They have often been known as a selling club, who are unable to compete with the top clubs in the league, and this seems as if it isn’t going to change anytime soon.
Romelu Lukaku, Ross Barkley and John Stones are amongst those who have been linked with a move away from the club and given recent results, you can see why. Lukaku has already stated that he would like to play Champions League football next season and you have to feel that Ross Barkley and John Stones will be feeling similar in the near future.
After today’s 1-1 draw with Southampton, Everton fans once again took to social media to express their displeasure with the club.
I have absolute zero confidence in @Everton getting anything from a game at the min! Seriously doubt we’ll pull it round in the next 2
Whether or not there is any substance to the following rumour, it’s existence represents the discord between Everton fans and manager Roberto Martinez as the season winds down.
Despite having players like Romelu Lukaku, Ross Barkley and John Stones on their books, Everton have struggled this season.
Yes, the Toffees are in the FA Cup semifinal where they are to face Man United, but after the 1-1 draw at Watford on Saturday they have dropped to 14th in the Premier League. That’s simply way too low for a team that should be competing for the European places.
Unsurprisingly, both Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink and Everton manager Roberto Martinez were asked about Diego Costa’s alleged bite of Gareth Barry following Saturday’s FA Cup quarter-final match at Goodison Park.
First up, Hiddink looked to play down the incident and defended the Chelsea striker: “he was chased a bit in the game as well.”
To a supplementary question, Hiddink refused to reveal what Costa said in the dressing room after the game.
Everton manager Roberto Martinez was also asked about Costa and also pointed the journalists away from the Gareth Barry incident.
See the video below of both Hiddink and Martinez, with transcripts of the Costa answers after the clip.
Guus Hiddink on Diego Costa’s alleged bite of Gareth Barry: “To be honest, and everyone who follows me a bit knows that I try to be fair in my judgement whether it’s pro or against. I haven’t seen it so far. It is difficult now for me to say it yes or no in this incident. What I, without saying that I want to give a judgement on this, he was chased a bit in the game as well. They went after him and so they knew it, and it’s within the rules, but also as a referee you must protect a bit the situation and I’m not saying to protect with capitals, but knowing and feeling the atmosphere when there are very small but a multitude of a little provocations and then comes the moment where I would like to give judgement but I haven’t seen it and then I’m speculating.”
Roberto Martinez on Diego Costa’s alleged bite of Gareth Barry: “My interpretation is that I don’t think it was a key moment in the game and I don’t think we should focus on it. I think it was an emotional game and rightly so. You want to see players that are desperate to win the game for your team. I thought Diego Costa had a fighting spirit, I don’t think it was much (more). I would like to praise the referee, the way he handled those emotions (of the players) I think the sending off of Costa was right, the sending off on Gareth Barry was right and he never ever allowed those emotions to stop the fluency of the game and that’s what you want, the referee to make those sorts of decisions and whatever happens with Diego Costa, I think we should see it as what we want to see in a Cup game – real emotions and I’m sure that the two players shook it off at the end of the game and it’s nothing to look back on.”
Roberto Martinez has admitted that it was indeed him dancing at a Jason Derulo concert in the video that went viral this morning. The Everton boss wasn’t embarrassed about being there or his moves.
When one journalist said he was hoping that it wasn’t him, Martinez responded brilliantly: “Why? It’s always good to get inspiration from creative people.” The journalist replied: “Oh. Fair enough, yeah.”
See Martinez speak about ‘the big bus and the smart car’ in the video below.