One of the reasons why I was wary of Everton sacking Ronald Koeman was the lack of an obvious replacement.
Ok, Sunday was grim and a change at the top was probably, regrettably, the right decision. But looking at the latest odds does not make pleasant reading.
It’s certainly a grim reminder that although we have ambitions to be part of the elite, we are nowhere near there yet.
I’m sure the following names will not even be considered by the Goodison hierarchy but just in case, here’s a few reasons why:
Unlike plenty of supporters I don’t subscribe to the revisionism of the David Moyes era. Yes, the way he let his contract run down in order to escape to Manchester United was a bit of a slap in the face, and his behaviour towards Everton in his first weeks in the job at Old Trafford was frankly insulting.
But, he still deserves our gratitude for keeping the club competitive despite having precious little money to spend. He also got his teams playing good football at times, even if his overly cautious approach cost him in big matches. That said, his time at Everton has gone and any thoughts of a return should be swiftly dismissed. It was felt at the time that a change was best for all parties, that his race at Goodison was run, and that still applies. His wretched spells at United, Sociedad and Sunderland only emphasises the point. His weaknesses as a manager have been exposed and they won’t suddenly disappear if he walks through the gates at Finch Farm once more. It would be an uninspiring and unambitious appointment.
Allardyce is actually a more progressive manager than many give him credit for. Ok, his tactics on the field are not particularly nuanced, but he was very much at the forefront of the sports-science revolution at the turn of the century while at Bolton and, Newcastle aside, he has left every club he’s managed in a better state than when he joined.
Searching for those marginal gains has made him into a very capable Premier League coach, certainly with lower-ranking clubs. But that’s the kicker. Allardyce has never managed a top club and his only honour as a manager in England is the Third Division with Notts County in 1998. Like Moyes he would certainly make Everton harder to beat and ensure we won’t go down. But if we have any sort of ambition Allardyce is not the man to turn to.
Though he has plenty of Premier League experience, Alan Pardew had done nothing of real note as a boss, bar two FA Cup final defeats (including that dance) and head-butting David Meyler while at Newcastle.
His smug persona - sometimes bordering on arrogance - is also unlikely to be appreciated by Evertonians. He certainly wasn’t by Newcastle fans, who labelled him part of the “cockney mafia’ alongside owner Mike Ashley and former managing director Derek Llambias. A terrible fit for all sorts of reasons. No thanks.
Giggs was quick to publicly throw his hat into the ring for the Everton job, and the Leicester job while he was at it, suggesting he’s not too fussed where he ends up. Such open desperation is not particularly attractive to prospective clubs, even from legendary players such as Giggs. It would be a huge gamble to appoint someone whose only experience is four games in interim charge of Man United following Moyes’ sacking in 2014. Great players don’t always make great managers (as we have just found out) so Giggs would be better off learning his trade a bit further down the ladder.
Another legendary player with a mixed record as a coach, Klinsmann was heavily linked with the job before Koeman’s appointment. I actually canvassed the opinion of RBM’s American contingent for some thoughts on Jurgen and the response was pretty conclusive: hell no. Tactically limited and with a habit of playing players out of position, he’s just the sort of manager Everton don’t need right now.