The dust has settled from Sunday’s decision by Everton to cut ties with manager Rafa Benitez six months into his tenure at Goodison Park, and Duncan Ferguson will take charge of the Blues for now.
While a ‘structural review’ continues behind the scenes at Finch Farm, a slew of positions lie open at the club which appears to be operating on a skeleton staff now with no Director of Football, no scouting heads, no chief of physiotherapy, and now no manager or assistants bar Ferguson and goalkeeping coach Alan Kelly, both of whom predate Benitez.
For now though the club has announced that Ferguson will be assisted by Academy coaches John Ebbrell and Leighton Baines even as rumours swirl furiously about Roberto Martinez, Jose Mourinho, Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard, Graham Potter, Niko Kovac, Diego Martinez and any number of employed and out of work managers all supposedly expressing their interest in drinking from the poisoned chalice at Goodison Park.
The crew at Royal Blue Mersey got together to discuss who they thought would be best placed to take over as the next permanent manager of Everton, the sixth in the six years since Farhad Moshiri became a shareowner at the club.
Pete - This club needs a plan and they need to stick to it. If we bring in a Director of Football, let him make all footballing decisions: that means all player decisions and hiring/firing managers. Moshiri should be setting long-term goals and setting budgets – nothing more.
In terms of the next appointment, I think we need to buy time. I’m very sceptical about Ferguson as a permanent appointment, but let’s give him an indefinite interim role while we see if he has the nous to do the job long-term and, if not, to let us figure out a legitimate long-term strategy that we can actually stick to.
Tom - Duncan Ferguson is the obvious choice to try and bring some stability and eke out some vital wins over the next few weeks to lift them away from danger. If it goes well then consider giving him the job until the summer.
Then I would like someone like Potter, but only if a DoF is appointed at the same time - ideally his current boss at Brighton Dan Ashworth. Farhad Moshiri then needs to promise to leave the football decisions to them and not get involved. There have been structural issues at this club over the past few years that have gone far beyond the manager’s dugout.
Geno - If we are going on the list released on Sunday, I would think that Potter is at the top of mine and everyone else’s list based on what he has done at Brighton over the long term, but it would probably require Big Dunc for a short stint till the summer to pry him away.
Other than that, I would go for either Rooney or Lampard. I think both work well with youth and, in Rooney’s case, he has proven to have the ability to take a disaster and turn things around rather quickly.
Kevin - Duncan Ferguson as interim, whilst we appoint a DoF, this time fully empowered to run all footballing operations at the club, with no interference. The DoF should handle targeting of the next boss, in the summer if necessary. Marcelo Gallardo or Erik ten Hag if possible, Potter otherwise.
Geoff - The interim manager has got to be Ferguson, bringing in a Ralf Rangnick-style appointment to a side in 16th position is the wrong answer though I would not put anything past Moshiri.
Long term, should be a choice between two: Lucien Favre whose teams play quick attacking football, well organised and gives youth a chance. Lampard, harshly sacked by Chelsea after a win percentage of 52%, even though they were bringing in a world class manager in his place. With the 2019 transfer ban in place he surprised everybody bringing through many current Chelsea and England stars. Believes in young players.
Matt - Duncan Ferguson until the end of the season then Christophe Galtier. The job he has done at Lille and Nice is out of this world.
Pat - Short term has to be Big Dunc hopefully with Baines close-by. Long term, I wouldn’t mind seeing Martinez make a return. I feel like he has gained some valuable experience with Belgium, and I certainly liked him most out of Ronald Koeman, Sam Allardyce, and Marco Silva. I would not like to see Lampard or Rooney take the helm.
Trent - I think Ferguson should be caretaker boss and that he should be offered the full time position should he show promise in that role. He has learned as an assistant and should be given a chance to at least see what he is made of. I do not like the idea of Martinez again, feel Mourinho could be iffy, and feel more regarding Rooney as I do Big Dunc.