The Tim Cahill derby was not a fixture many of us were expecting to see on the January calendar back at the start of the season, alas, here we are, going away to Millwall in an effort to keep alive a very much dying season with the faint glimmer of the FA Cup in the distance.

As much as I have tried to bring the optimism this season, I can’t any longer pretend that the season isn’t dead in the water. Pull the plug on the life support, it’s not healthy. If you offered me 17th right now and the season would end, I would take it in a heartbeat. Just get us off of this horrendous timeline and into May, June and July where Everton is simply an afterthought and the sun is shining as we go back to enjoying our lives, something that us Evertonians scarcely see the luxury of.

Enjoyment has also been a key theme in the media this week, with Mr Allardyce coming back yet again with comments to a club he managed for a few months. He seems to have handled the breakup very poorly, and we would do well to simply ignore him and his clique of old-school, hateful media compatriots. He is nothing more than a man who is bitter that he was not up to a job he had no right to get in the first place. Sam Allardyce is a very sad human being, and offers nothing of value to anything he touches. Lest we forget that he is not only a hateful, spiteful man but also that he is a national disgrace following his fraudulent time as England manager.

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That is all I will say on Sam Allardyce, and let him be consigned to the history books right alongside his Mesozoic brand of ‘football’, and not given another thought beyond the old boys’ club that is his talkSPORT gang.

Anyway, Everton have a game to play, for better or worse. We are not in a good state, that has been very well documented, however now is not the time to succumb to the whims of modern football and swing the axe on Mr Silva, far from it.

He should be backed like never before, and all of our support should be given to the manager. The team is not worthy of any support, and I’m not suggesting for a minute that they should be given that unwarranted affection, given as they do not offer anything back. The freeloaders in the team will slither out come the end of the season, and Mr Silva and Mr Brands can get to work on transforming a genuinely toxic club.

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The rest of the season should be spent on developing our talent, and giving the younger players both around the first team and in the academy some chances to make an impact. There will be no pressure on any of them to perform, and who knows, we may find a long term solution from an institution that has been neglected for too long. Tom Davies was meant to be the next big player to come out of the academy system, but that train seems to have derailed for now. But it is players like him who should be the focus of the season going forward, to see if they can grasp the brass ring and give Mr Silva more options to think about come May.

With that in mind, my teams from here on out will follow that philosophy, as we have realistically staved off any thoughts of relegation.

João Virgínia — Jonjoe Kenny, Michael Keane, Yerry Mina, Lucas Digne — Tom Davies, Beni Baningime, André Gomes — Bernard, Ademola Lookman — Dominic Calvert-Lewin.