Duncan Ferguson has urged the fans to get Goodison Park “rocking” and create a “cauldron” of an atmosphere as he prepares to take caretaker charge of the side for the first time against Chelsea on Saturday.
First-team coach Ferguson was placed in interim charge on Thursday following the sacking of Marco Silva, who paid the price for a shocking run of form that has yielded just four wins from 15 league games.
The Scot remains an Everton icon, particularly amongst a certain generation of fans (like me), so it is sure to be an emotional occasion for him and the supporters alike when he takes to the dugout on Saturday lunchtime.
The 47-year-old has urged the Goodison faithful to generate a fearsome atmosphere and back the team as they look to dig themselves out of the rut they find themselves in.
Speaking to the official website, he said:
“We want it rocking, don’t we?
“We want the fans onside, which I am sure they will be – and they have been.
“It’s been a tough time for everybody at the club of late.
“We want Saturday to be a real cauldron, the atmosphere, supporting the team.
“Having the fans with you gives you a lift… an extra yard.
“Hopefully that is what will happen on Saturday and I am sure it will.”
Ferguson is due to take training for the first time on Friday, with John Ebbrell, Francis Jeffers and Alan Kelly stepping-up from their roles with the under-23 squad to assist him.
The Toffees slipped into the relegation zone following that miserable defeat at Liverpool on Wednesday and Ferguson knows how important it is for the players to show a response.
“We will put on a session today with plenty of talking and communication with them and trying to build them up for the game.
“We know how important it is and we’ll make sure they know as well.
“I am incredibly proud to manage the club, I have been here a very long time and it is a big part of my life.
“We have to try to get their performance up, make sure there’s a reaction from the past few games and it is my job to do that.
“[We want] what everybody wants, we want to see a team that is fighting.
“Passion for the shirt.
“But we have to be sensible, too. Chelsea are a very strong team, very strong on the counter-attack.
“We have to be careful about when we are pressing.
“It will be a great atmosphere on Saturday and we want a high-energy performance from the team.
“I am sure the players will be ready to perform.”
David Moyes remains the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Silva, though Vitor Pereira, Eddie Howe, Carlo Ancelotti, Marcelino and even Mauricio Pochettino have been mentioned in the media over the past 24 hours.