This morning’s news of Raphael Varane completing a £41 million (A$77 million) switch from Real Madrid to Manchester United is definitely a positive development for the Red Devils’ title hopes in 2021-22.
At the end of last season the general consensus was that Ronald Koeman had done a reasonable job in his first year in charge at Goodison Park.
The former Southampton boss guided the Toffees to a seventh-place league finish and Everton fans had belief the foundations were set to potentially challenge for a top-four finish in the 2017-18 season.
Significant investment for Everton bankrolled by Farhad Moshiri in the transfer window only increased the level of expectation for the upcoming season.
Results however have not gone according to plan and the latest result a disappointing 1-1 draw with Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday leaves Everton in lowly 16th position.
The list of incoming players during the transfer window and money spent was significant. Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea,£44m), Jordan Pickford (Sunderland, £30m), Michael Keane (Burnley, £30m), Davy Klaassen (Ajax, £24m), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United, undisclosed), Henry Onyekuru (Eupen, £7m), Sandro Ramirez (Malaga, £5.2m) and Nikola Vlasic (Hajduk Split, £8m)
The most notable player exit from last season was Romelu Lukaku, with the striker joining Manchester United.
While the Belgian was a derisive figure among the faithful during his tenure at Goodison he was someone who is a proven goal scorer. Everton have struggled to replace Lukaku.
It was a difficult start to the season with Europa League commitments and a fixture that saw the Toffees face Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Tottenham in the opening five matches.
With so many squad changes the Everton hierarchy stressed the need for patience for new players to gel and adapt. Patience is not always a virtue that fans possess and results are already testing the fans’ resolve.
Social media is often not the best place to look for rational discussion and it would be fair to say many Everton fans are less than content reading through a cross-section of the commentary.
Tactics and team selection will always be questioned when results are unsatisfactory and two wins from eight league games has turned the blowtorch onto the manager and the whole club.
The media scrutiny has also intensified in recent weeks. Pundit and former Liverpool striker Stan Collymore of the opinion that Everton should be doing everything they can to entice Carlo Ancelotti to the club.
Koeman tried his best to talk up the positives after the draw with Brighton. “My whole football life is pressure. We are in a difficult situation, but it’s one thing to come out of this and show fight like we did today”
A Europa League match with Lyon at Goodison Park awaits next followed by a clash with Arsenal.
Ronald Koeman is remaining stoic that he is the man for the job and can turn things around. For his sake he needs a win sooner rather than later or that blowtorch may just get a little hotter.