Everton 'identify top two targets' to replace sacked Rafa Benitez

EVERTON are on the search for a new manager following the sacking of Rafa Benitez.

Posted Monday, January 17, 2022 by Express.co.uk

Everton have identified Roberto Martinez and Duncan Ferguson as their two frontrunners to replace Rafa Benitez, according to reports. Benitez was sacked by Everton on Sunday following a run of just one win in 13 Premier League matches. The Toffees are 16th in the table, only six points above the relegation zone.

Benitez lasted just six months at Goodison Park following his much-criticised appointment last summer.

Many Everton fans were not happy that a successful former Liverpool manager was now in charge at their club.

Everton's official statement following the sacking of Benitez said an announcement on his successor would be made "in due course".

The statement read: "Everton Football Club can confirm the departure of Rafael Benitez as First Team manager.

Everton 'identify top two targets' to replace sacked Rafa Benitez
Everton news: Rafa Benitez was sacked on Sunday

"Benitez, who joined Everton in June 2021, has left the Club with immediate effect.

"An update on a permanent replacement will be made in due course."

And Everton chiefs are already lining up managers who they want to bring in.

TalkSPORT claims Roberto Martinez and Duncan Ferguson are the top two targets.

Martinez managed Everton between 2013 and 2016 before being sacked.

However, the Spaniard has got plenty of support in the boardroom at Goodison Park.

Martinez has spent the last five-and-a-half years as manager of Belgium.

He signed a new contract with the Red Devils in 2020 to keep him in charge until the end of the 2022 World Cup later this year.

But Everton seemingly want to bring him back to the Premier League before then.

Meanwhile, Ferguson is another option for Everton chiefs.

The former striker has been on the first-team coaching staff since February 2014.

He was put in caretaker charge in December 2019 following the sacking of Marco Silva.

Ferguson was unbeaten in his four matches in charge, winning three.

He remained as assistant coach to both Carlo Ancelotti and Benitez and is now in line to get the job full time.

Ferguson is likely to be placed in charge on an interim basis until the Everton board settle on a permanent successor to Benitez.

The Telegraph claims Derby County boss and former Everton striker Wayne Rooney also has support from the club's hierarchy.

Former Bayern Munich manager Niko Kovac has also been mentioned as a potential candidate.

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