Are Everton doing enough to maintain their identity?

Football FanCast columnist Joe Jennings wonders if Everton are doing enough
to maintain their identity within the City.

The
commencement of the much awaited Liverpool One shopping development last week
raised a few eyebrows among Evertonians, resulting in gripes towards the
reputedly inadequate club we love and cherish.

For me
personally, it made me think about our stature and presence in the City of
Liverpool, or as I concluded, our complete lack of it. As the tape was cut,
hordes of eager and self proclaimed "abiding"
Liverpool fans surged into their new shiny club shop as Evertonians looked on
not only with envy but sheer disgust.

Liverpool is
proving a tourist honey pot, with the masses flocking to the city of culture to
sample a taste of Scouse life. What are Everton doing to exploit this? Barring
closing the club shop within the city centre and saddling the equally
contemptible JJB with our merchandise.

Why is it
that we as a club find it unthinkable to market ourselves off the pitch, is it
really that laborious? I find it absolutely baffling, I simply cannot grasp the
reasoning behind not opening a club shop in a thriving city that is literally
saturated with tourism and in turn money. Going to the club shop to purchase
Everton related merchandise is all well and good, but in reality, it is
unpractical and unfitting of the marketing developments within football in
general.

Walking
along Church Street, only a few weeks ago was astounding. Admittedly, it was a
relatively hot day but it pained me to view a sea of red in front of me. In my
opinion, for every ten Liverpool jerseys that were donned, only one or possibly
two Everton replica shirts were spotted. Now maybe this is irrelevant, maybe it
is a mere coincidence but in my opinion this is a sad reminder of the reality
of our predicament; we are living in the shadow, literally.

But this can
be halted, which is the most frustrating aspect of the whole scenario. We're
finally getting things right on the pitch with Moyes and a respectable,
well-equipped squad, which is what we all desire, but in years to come who'll
be there to watch us, what legacy will we have?

Sadly, at
the current rate, not only will young Evertonians continue to diminish
frequently but the visitors to Liverpool city centre will result in the
dramatic upturn in fortunes of the beloved neighbours. What connection will we
have with Liverpool if the proposed ground move reaches fruition, what will
prevent the "One City- One Love- One
Liverpool
" media tool being spun?

The
slackness of the marketing department at Everton Football Club is not only
astounding, but evidently inadequate and ill-equipped to the task of managing a
top-five Premiership club. How can a club of our size be so anonymous to
hundreds of thousands of people? I recently travelled abroad, I spoke to a fair
few football fans, mainly under the age of 16, who for the life of them,
couldn't grasp the concept behind me supporting Everton if I lived in
Liverpool, it was as if we didn't exist.

If only we
had somebody within the club who had a shred of knowledge of how not only to
gain publicity, but maintain it. Why can't we adopt the approach of many
others, literally bobbing up and down in front of the cameras like an annoying
rabble that to refuse settle for limited exposure? Last week, the world's
spotlight was on the city of Liverpool, we missed out, big time.

I look on
with great fear and agitation as the countdown to the Kirkby bomb reaches
nearer, hopefully it will self destruct and the haunted tunnel will grind to a
halt. But one thing will prove absolutely crucial, David Moyes and his Everton
squad must win a trophy before it's too late, we can no longer continue to
produce such die-hard schoolboy blues with a glittering history from the ‘80s.
We must embrace ourselves for the darkest possible predicament, winning a
trophy gives the young fans something to think about, something to feel proud
about, and now more than ever, those are the fans we need to capture and in
turn nurture.

NB
– Joe Jennings is competing in our Bloggers Euro Championship so if you can
give his article a rating in the voting box, it would be greatly appreciated.

Article title: Are Everton doing enough to maintain their identity?

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