Ronald Koeman’s Stubbornness Has Cost Him His Job

Ed Angeli

Ronald Koeman is a cold man; a distant figure who shows little interest in getting close to players, the media or even his own fans. Such approach brought rewards last season, but has failed miserably this time around with an obvious detachment between manager and the club; it’s cost him his job with the Dutchman becoming the third Premier League manager casualty this season.

The animosity between the manager and fans has killed Goodison Park, with the ground totally flat after the humbling from Arsenal; that old buzz and hostility that usually greets teams when they arrive on Merseyside is missing; Arsenal controlled the game from the off, and could have been out of sight in the first-half had it not been to the excellence of Jordan Pickford,

This coldness projected by the Toffees gaffer has been criticised by former Everton defender, Alan Stubbs:

“With Ronald, there seems to be a real lack of connection between him and the fans. There doesn’t seem to be a bond.

“You see Klopp with the Liverpool fans, he seems to get it. With Koeman and the Everton fans, it seems to be a cold relationship.”

— Alan Stubbs, speaking to the Daily Star

Koeman does not seem the type to be flexible or change his ways; it’s the Koeman-way, and that’s that. Such stubbornness is seen with the Dutchman’s adamance on playing Wayne Rooney and Gylfi Sigurdsson together – it’s not utilising their marquee signing, Sigurdsson, in his best position; zero goals and zero assists this Premier League campaign says that more than anything.

Other than Dominic Calvert-Lewin, there is no pace in the Everton side. The Toffees are predictable, one-dimensional and lack any threat out wide with Koeman’s continual persistence of keeping the likes of Kevin Mirallas on the bench. There’s nothing exciting about this Everton side, other than relying on Wayne Rooney to roll back the years.

Koeman’s continual changes at half-time, such as Tom Davies coming off the bench against Arsenal – the ninth time in 17 games that the manager has made a change at this stage (stat taken from BBC) – suggest he doesn’t know what he’s doing from the off; making it up as he goes along.

Yes, Everton were dealt a horrible Premier League start with visits to both Manchester clubs, a trip to Stamford Bridge and welcoming Arsenal and Tottenham at Goodison; however, the problem is Everton were only competitive in one of these games. They can’t fall back and say, at least the games were won by small margins; they conceded 15 goals in these games, and only scored three, taking just one-point.

It’s not been good enough, and the Dutchman’s sacking is far more reasonable than Craig Shakespeare’s at Leicester. Where Bill Kenwright showed patience with Roberto Martínez, despite dark periods for the Spaniard at Goodison, can be seen because of Martinez’ character and likeability keeping him in the job longer than he should have; Kenwright is a patient boss, proven by Everton’s few managers since the parting of long-time servant, David Moyes. However, Koeman’s stubbornness and clear lack of a decent working relationship with his seniors has ultimately cost him his job.

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