Sanctioned for financial infractions, the Toffees, who face Manchester United on Sunday (5:30 p.m.), see the specter of relegation more than ever. But there are reasons for hope.
The news hit like a bombshell. And the scope of the explosion is not yet known. Last weekend, an independent Premier League commission handed Everton a 10-point penalty for financial offense. The Liverpool club would not have respected the rules of “profitability and viability“.
Before facing Manchester United on Sunday (5:30 p.m.), the Toffees are in penultimate place in the standings with 4 small points, while they were fourteenth before the sanction. Enough to once again glimpse the specter of relegation. Last year, Sean Dyche’s men saved themselves in extremisthanks to a 1-0 victory on the very last day against Bournemouth.
If there is one quality that I think describes this club (Everton) it is courage, determination and fight. They will fight against anything and I wish them the best.
Mikel Arteta, Arsenal manager and former Everton player.
“Shocked and disappointed» by this “totally disproportionate and unfair” sanction, the heaviest ever inflicted in the history of the Premier League, Everton appealed. “The club does not recognize the conclusion that it did not act with the utmost good faith“, he reacted in a press release. Concretely, he is accused of having suffered a loss of 124.5 million pounds sterling (142 million euros) between 2019 and 2022, while the maximum authorized ceiling is 105 million pounds (120 million euros). ).
While waiting for the appeal to be processed, the English club, which has never left the elite of English football since the 1954-1955 season, will have to deal with the sanction. Before him, only two teams in the history of the Premier League were sanctioned with a withdrawal of points during the season: Middlesbrough in 1996-1997 and Portsmouth in 2009-2010. Both were relegated. Not really reuring.
But there are reasons for hope for the Toffees. They remain on six victories in their last nine matches. And Luton, first non-relegation in the standings, is only two small points away. A group of supporters have raised more than £40,000 to buy anti-Premier League protest gear which they will brandish against Manchester United on Sunday. “They feel injusticeconfides Dyche, the coach, to the BBC. All we can ask for is their support and support in the stadium.»
Everton will therefore try to transform the immense feeling of injustice which inhabits them into strength. If he and his men feel “injured» by the situation and that they will have to “work harder for longer“, Dyche erts that everyone is “ready for the next challenge“. A wind of “us against the world” floats in the stands of Goodison Park. Kevin Thelwell, director of football, said in the wake of the sanction that Everton’s spirit remained “strong ” And “unshakable ”, while insisting that the club was “United“.
Having ped through the ranks of the Toffees as a player between 2005 and 2011, Mikel Arteta, the Arsenal coach, confided in a press conference that he was experiencing “a very difficult time” since the announcement of the sanction. But he is convinced that his former club will recover. “Everton have been in plenty of other tough positions and they always find a way outhe ures. If there is one quality that I think describes this club, it is courage, determination and fight. They will fight against anything and I wish them the best.»