Liverpool jibes heighten Moyes' desire for FA Cup success


Six celebrating Everton players stood in front of their 7,000 fans in Sunderland after their 2-0 FA Cup win on Tuesday night. Every time their arms went up, so did the level of noise. Tuesday night was a good night to be an Evertonian, but it did not quite feel as good a night to be the club's manager.

Not because there appeared too many flaws in the demolition of Sunderland at their own ground, although even then, their manager scoffed at words like perfect, principally because they had missed good chances and only scored twice.

Perhaps you had to see the intensity of Moyes to understand that he would not have gone within a million miles of those six players celebrating, because after 10 years, reaching a semi-final is nowhere near enough.

Moyes' team-sheet for the Merseyside derby on 13 March should have given warning to everyone in English football that his patience in waiting for a piece of silverware to push all those plaudits out of the way has reached breaking point. Then Moyes made six changes and significantly weakened his team, who capitulated fairly unimpressively. Losing a derby is never pleasant, but the taunting from Liverpool's supporters ("10 years, and you've won f*** all') seems to have poured paraffin on the smouldering coals deep inside this fiercely driven manager.


Moyes has 10 years worth of praise from everyone in the game. He has built and rebuilt and he has done it without much money and he has found jewels in the lower leagues and has polished them and installed his burning desire inside every single one of them.

That was what impressed so much on Tuesday night. Call it fear or call it respect but not one Everton player would have been in a hurry to walk back into the visiting dressing room after Lee Probert had blown the final whistle to face their manager as a loser. You cannot consider Moyes a loser, not after making Everton good again without the finance to push on for the top four, but in his focus comes the notion that he will never consider himself a winner until he walks up those steps at Wembley, for a final, with his side victorious.

Liverpool in the semi-final will not be intimated, certainly not for their second visit to Wembley inside two months, but they face a team that has a collective desire so strong it blew away Sunderland in a way not seen since Martin O'Neill installed a pretty similar set of ideals there to Moyes' upon his arrival in December.

When the six took their curtain-call, Moyes had long since disappeared down the tunnel, not for him celebrating quarter-final victories any more.

Perhaps the comparison at this point should be to his fellow countryman Colin Montgomerie, a golfer who could never push his first major over the line. These things can often be about timing, and Moyes, at 48, has never been more hungry.

Who knows who won the Merseyside derbies in 1995? Who cares? Everton won the Cup and Joe Royle helped create a moment every Evertonian will cherish to their dying day. History beckons if the current Everton manager can get two games right.

"This is all about us," said Tim Cahill, who was one of the celebrating six. "We are too experienced to start worrying what Liverpool are doing. Being an Everton player is something I relish.

"Everyone can put figures on the table, but our manager has got the best record in the world when it comes to spending money and what he does for the club. As players, we have to make sure that money is well spent."

Collective responsibility. It is Everton's strategy to win the FA Cup.

Arts and Entertainment
Armstrong, left, and Bain's writing credits include Peep Show, Fresh Meat, and The Old Guys
TVThe pair have presented their view of 21st-century foibles in shows such as Peep Show and Fresh Meat
Arts and Entertainment
Keys to success: Andrew and Julian Lloyd Webber
arts + entsMrs Bach had too many kids to write the great man's music, says Julian Lloyd Webber
footballMan City manager would have loved to have signed Argentine
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Hand out press photograph/film still from the movie Mad Max Fury Road (Downloaded from the Warner Bro's media site/Jasin Boland/© 2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)
films'You have to try everything and it’s all a process of elimination, but ultimately you find your path'
Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films

New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning


Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy

Russia Today’s new UK channel began broadcasting yesterday. Discussions so far have included why Britons see Russia as ‘the bad guy’

New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain

Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch at the premiere of The Imitation Game at the BFI London Film Festival
filmsKeira Knightley tried to miss The Imitation Game premiere to watch Bake Off
Enner Valencia
footballStriker has enjoyed a rapid rise to fame via winning the title with ‘The Blue Ballet’ in Ecuador
Arts and Entertainment
A top literary agent has compared online giant Amazon to Isis
arts + entsAndrew Wylie has pulled no punches in criticism of Amazon
Arts and Entertainment
Charlie Sheen said he would

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Bryan Adams' heartstopping images of wounded British soldiers to go on show at Somerset House

Bryan Adams' images of wounded soldiers

Taken over the course of four years, Adams' portraits are an astonishing document of the aftermath of war
The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities