Date: 16th June 2008 at 2:31pm
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Nigel Hokey Cokey has said Villa should look at Everton as an example of how to build successfully over time.

And to be fair he has a point.

Under Moyes Everton have pretty much improved season on season and they finished above us by a couple of points even though Martin O’Neill has only had a couple of years with us.

Their growth has been a huge success for them and is all credit to Moyes. But in many ways in far less time, we blew 5th place last season with some shoddy results and should’ve taken Everton out of the races far earlier.

So although we should look at Everton and see how long it can take to grow, ultimately given the time periods Everton had one or two element we didn’t have in my opinion.

The experience and the bottle.

For how good we were and did, we bottled it in games like Fulham. That’s what we should take from Everton, sticking at it. Grinding out results consistently and learning not to bottle it in games you know you should win hands down.

Speaking on the official site, NRC said:

‘For any team not in the top four, it’s a building process. You’re not going to get the guaranteed quick fix to get into the top four.

‘The top four teams have been doing it for years; they have been spending serious money for years on wages and transfer fees. And it takes time. Any club has to eventually build up to that process.

‘Last year we were in and around fourth or fifth place all season. We had a few results which didn’t go our way and we let ourselves down in certain games against Middlesbrough, Sunderland and Wigan at home and Fulham away.

‘But it was a consistent season for us and no one can complain. We didn’t really have as bad dip like other teams. What we did in the League with the money we spent, it was great.’

It was great, and yes they let themselves down in the games mentioned. Had we won those Everton wouldn’t have been in with a chance of 5th place. That is something we need to remember as we go through the next campaign – every point counts, and we will only improve if we don’t throw points away.

‘Look at Everton. All credit to David Moyes, but how long has he been building there? A very long time. Next year will be the manager’s third year and we had a chance of overtaking them for fifth spot until the final game.

‘You look at where we are now and what we could do, we have to have reality and it was a good season.

‘We used the fewest amount of players in the Premier League, we had the smallest squad in the League and people don’t understand how hard it is to win games in the Premier League.

‘Last season I would say it was the most competitive the Premier League had been for years.’

If anything, although there are things we can learn from Everton and Spurs to a degree in how they have been building over the years, next season we can if we perform, show the chasing pack some things of our own given the timescales involved in our building.