Frank Lampard is the leading candidate for the Everton manager’s job after Friday’s interviews concluded, with an announcement expected soon.
Everton held a final round of talks with three candidates to replace Rafa Benitez – Lampard, Vitor Pereira and current caretaker manager Duncan Ferguson – for the vacant manager role on Friday.
Everton owner Farhad Moshiri had flown into London to hold talks with all three candidates.
The club is searching for a successor following the sacking of Benitez this month after just 200 days in the wake of Everton’s 2-1 defeat at Norwich.
Everton sit 16th in the Premier League and are just four points above the relegation zone having won one and drawn three of their last 14 matches.
Earlier on Friday, former Everton striker Wayne Rooney revealed he turned down the chance to talk with the Toffees about their managerial vacancy because he wants to stay as Derby County boss.
Rooney said: “Everton approached my agent and asked me to interview for the vacant job, which I turned down.
“I believe that I will be a Premier League manager and I believe I’m ready for that 100 per cent, and if that is with Everton one day in the future that’d be absolutely great. But I’ve got a job here to do at Derby County which is an important job to me.”
Asked if it was a hard decision not to speak to Everton, Rooney added: “Yes, of course I did [think hard about it].
“They got in touch with my agent and my agent let the administrators know as well. Of course it was a very difficult decision for me.”
Everton Q&A: Why are the fans protesting?
How are things going at Everton?
Not well. The Toffees are 16th in the Premier League having secured 19 points from 20 matches, with the side starting 2022 with three Premier League defeats.
A 2-1 loss to embattled Norwich was the final nail in the coffin of long-disliked manager Benitez and came just days after the club allowed France international Lucas Digne to join Aston Villa.
Fan favourite Duncan Ferguson took temporary charge but failed to steer Everton to a much-needed victory, with Aston Villa winning 1-0 at Goodison Park on Saturday with Digne providing the assist.
What is the current mood in the fanbase?
Fury fuelled by a need for change. Before Saturday’s match, a plane flew over Goodison Park calling for long-standing chairman Bill Kenwright’s departure, with the trailing banner reading “22 years of failure, Bill. Time to go”.
There was more anger on display after the final whistle as around 150 fans stayed behind to protest, chanting “Sack the board”, “Bill Kenwright, get out of our club” and “We want our club back”.
Frustration has continued to be expressed since then, with a number of supporters congregating outside the Liver Building – where Everton’s commercial offices are based – before another protest took place on Wednesday night outside Goodison.
What issues are there at the club?
Everton have no manager, director of football, head of recruitment or scouting chief, with few trusting those at the top of the club to make the right decisions and improve things.
The club have been owned by Farhad Moshiri since 2016 and the Iranian businessman certainly cannot be faulted for his financial backing, having already spent over half-a-billion pounds on transfers since his £200m takeover in 2016.
Last week he committed another £100m to the club after increasing his stake to 94 per cent but he has consistently made poor decisions. On Wednesday, fans voiced their objections to potential new manager Vitor Pereira, agent Kia Joorabchian – reportedly advising Moshiri – and Kenwright.
Everton’s next fixtures
February 5: Brentford (H) – FA Cup
February 8: Newcastle (A) – Premier League
February 12: Leeds (H) – Premier League
February 19: Southampton (A) – Premier League
February 26: Manchester City (H) – Premier League, live on Sky Sports
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Source : Sky Sports