Everton want to appoint Frank Lampard’s successor by Friday, with Marcelo Bielsa the favourite; Sean Dyche and Ralph Hasenhuttl are in the frame; Arnaut Danjuma was set to sign for Everton but has now moved to Spurs; Farhad Moshiri is looking for investors but is not selling the club
Everton are seeking new investors, a new manager and new players
Everton want their new manager in place by Friday, with Marcelo Bielsa, Sean Dyche and Ralph Hasenhuttl in the frame to take over as Frank Lampard’s replacement.
The Toffees sacked Lampard on Monday after nearly a year in charge at Goodison Park, with former Leeds boss Bielsa the favourite to take over.
Bielsa is Everton owner Farhad Moshiri’s preferred option, but the cost of bringing the Argentine coach in means the deal is a difficult one to do.
Bielsa and his backroom staff are likely to cost Everton up to £1m a month – a figure which would cover all the members of the coach’s support staff.
Bielsa’s particular negotiating style sees him request a large fee which he then distributes throughout his coaching team, who come as a non-negotiable part of the package.
While Bielsa is No 1 on Everton’s wanted list, it is understood there are concerns among the bosses about the cost and about making such wholesale changes to their coaching staff structure.
With Everton ideally wanting a manager with Premier League experience, Sean Dyche and Ralph Hasenhuttl remain contenders for the vacancy, should negotiations with Bielsa break down.
What happened with Danjuma?
Everton were very disappointed over the U-turn of Villarreal forward Arnaut Danjuma, who looked set to move to Goodison Park on loan – but he has now finalised a move to Tottenham after Spurs made an 11th-hour bid for the forward.
Danjuma completed his medical last weekend and the club had even finalised the in-house media to announce the signing.
However, the 25-year-old failed to turn up to sign his Everton contract – and started the first part of his Tottenham medical on Tuesday evening.
That means a squad which is in desperate need of refreshing is still without a new face in January.
Moshiri admits failings behind the scenes have contributed to a scattergun and largely unsuccessful transfer policy under his ownership.
“Why hasn’t it worked? I think that is a big question as the structure is there,” he said of the move to a director of football during his time at the club.
“We have had Steve Walsh from Leicester, a very experienced scout, Marcel Brands, one of the top European directors, and now Kevin Thelwell.
“I think the reasons are that some of the deficiencies in various departments of football management were not addressed.
“Those are imperative to proper recruitment, that affects the performance availability and Financial Fair Play. Once you buy these players, you cannot buy additional players.
“We got very little out of these players.”
What is happening with Gordon?
Everton forward Anthony Gordon missed training for the second successive day as his future at the club looks increasingly in doubt.
The 21-year-old has been the subject of interest from Newcastle in this transfer window and missed the squad’s return to the Finch Farm training complex on Tuesday following the sacking of manager Frank Lampard.
Everton again expected Gordon to be at training on Wednesday but the PA news agency understands the academy graduate was absent for a second day without permission, casting further doubt over his long-term future at his boyhood club.
Midfielder Amadou Onana, reportedly attracting interest from Arsenal, did rejoin the group on Wednesday having been given an authorised absence by the club the previous day.
Only a month ago, Gordon, whose current contract expires in 2025, was set to sign a new deal but things appear to have soured since then.
Having started the Boxing Day defeat to Wolves, the winger has since made just two substitute appearances totalling 30 minutes and, despite being the club’s joint-top scorer in the Premier League this season with three goals, he was left on the bench for the entire 90 minutes in last weekend’s defeat against West Ham.
Both Newcastle and Chelsea made offers for Gordon in the summer but the club were adamant the youngster was not for sale and, while that resolve may now be weakening, without a manager in place it makes sanctioning any potential departure difficult.
It is an added complication relegation-threatened Everton do not need right now as they search for an eighth permanent manager in just under seven years of owner Moshiri’s reign.
Everton are looking at replacements for Gordon, including Hakim Ziyech. The Toffees are keen to sign the Chelsea winger and the Blues are considering letting him go.
Is Everton up for sale?
In an interview released this week, Everton owner Moshiri announced the club is not for sale. However, the Toffees hierarchy are looking for investment to cover a funding gap for the new stadium.
Moshiri told the club’s Fan Advisory Board (FAB) that he is looking for help financing the construction of Everton’s new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock in a video posted on the club’s website on Tuesday but recorded prior to their defeat to West Ham on Saturday.
That investment could come as anything up to 20 per cent in the club, but nothing more.
“The club is not for sale but I have been talking to top investors, really quality, to bridge a gap [in funding] on the stadium,” Moshiri told the club’s FAB.
“I can do it myself and the reason I want to do it is to bring top sport investors to Everton. We are close to having a deal done.
“It is not selling the club at all. It is bringing more expertise in terms of sponsorship, commercial development and a lot of specialist sport investors have this pool of knowledge.
“The stadium is the best-performing area of our operation at the moment: on time, on budget. Once we get through the current underperformance fans can start dreaming with me.
“The stadium was never a luxury for Everton. For us, it was a necessity.”
Moshiri: We need to be calm and ruthless
Nine defeats in 12 league matches accounted for Lampard with the club only staying off the bottom of the table on goal difference.
Former Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa emerged as the favourite to replace him but a deal for him remains complicated and, with the transfer window closing in six days, Everton want the new man in place by the end of the week.
The club have also considered Carlos Corberan, who has done an impressive job turning around West Brom’s failing fortunes in the Sky Bet Championship.
The out-of-work ex-Burnley boss Sean Dyche and Sam Allardyce, who had a previous six-month spell at the club to save them from trouble in the 2017-18 season, have also been mentioned.
Moshiri admits this is now a pivotal time for the club, which have not been relegated since 1951.
“This is the most critical time in our history. It is almost an existential point,” he said in an interview with the Everton Fan Advisory Board, conducted before Saturday’s West Ham game.
“I have faith in this board. I’m not shy to make changes. We make changes when there is a need.
“We will be ruthless. We need to be calm and we need to go beyond our current position on the pitch.”
Everton’s next six fixtures
February 4 – Arsenal (H), kick-off 12.30pm
February 13 – Liverpool (A), kick-off 8pm
February 18 – Leeds (H), kick-off 3pm
February 25 – Aston Villa (H), kick-off 3pm
March 5 – Nottingham Forest (A), kick-off 2pm
March 11 – Brentford (H), kick-off 3pm