What will Brands exit mean for Everton future?

Marcel Brands (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)
Marcel Brands (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images) /

It’s been officially confirmed that Marcel Brands has left Everton and now Blues’ fans are left with further uncertainty about what his departure means for the future of their football club.

The terse and almost embarrasingly short statement from Everton certainly didn’t leave you with the feeling there was much regret over this situation!

Removing Brands doesn’t solve the problems at the club, at least not in the short-term. While the Dutchman may well have been a key participant in some of the many mistakes that have afflicted the team, obviously the problems are much deeper than just him.

The former PSV Eindhoven man was part of what has become a highly disfunctional club in which huge sums have been wasted over the last five years on a host of managers and players without achieving any success on the pitch.

And, he can only be held partially accountable for what’s happened in the last three and a half of them since he took up his post in 2018, more than two years after Farhad Moshiri bought the club.

Brands’ did though seem to become a focus for some of the anger and frustration Evertonians have been expressing as results continue to go wrong and the team slides down the Premier League table.

Exactly what role Brands played in creating this situation is still unclear to those of us outside the club who couldn’t be a fly on the wall at the meetings and discussions that led to decisions on who was to become manager and which players to bring in.

There are certain decisions and buys like that of Moise Kean which certainly did seem to have his fingerprints all over them.

However, it seems that many of those bigger football decisions were taken by Farhad Moshiri himself, which begs the question what was the point of Brands’ position if he wasn’t pivitol in such choices, particularly over managers?

And, as the Toffees’ face a game tonight against Arsenal, which is a match you feel they simply have to get something from, Brands departure, of course, does nothing to change who picks the side or how they will be set up to play.

That is all down to the man who seems to have come out of this whole debacle in a stronger position than ever: Rafa Benitez.

The Everton manager was not the man Brands wanted to replace Carlo Ancelotti last summer and the evidence suggests Benitez also went behind the back of the Director of Football when making his signings after he took the job.

As I said yesterday, in some ways this decision clarifies matters because now there can be no question who should be held responsible for the players that come in through the door and whether they are successful or not.

Longer-term what will the club do? There was mention in the statement from the club of a ‘strategic review’ taking place, we don’t know what that exactly means.

Is there going to be another Director of Football appointment made and if so what exact role and power will that individual have to make key football decisions?

I’m not sure who would want to come to what is obviously a club in crisis. Especially, when he is facing a situation in which his opportunties to do things is severly contrained by an owner who now seems to have placed almost his entire faith and the future of the football club in the hands of his latest managerial choice.

Meanwhile, in the short-term can Benitez pull the team out of the tailspin of disasterous results that have plunged the Blues’ closer to the relegation zone? And, if he can’t what then? The board would surely have to consider making a change there as well before the slide becomes unstoppable.

So, despite what has happened this weekend it seems to me that all the questions that promted the fans anger and despair still remain to be answered.