Benitez’s painful reign as Everton manager has ended after only 6 and a half months in charge. Rumours of his departure began to surface after Everton’s soulless and humiliating performance against the Premier Leagues then bottom side, Norwich City FC which resulted in a 2-1 defeat. Only the canaries third victory of the season. It has since been confirmed by the club in an official statement. The situation was simply untenable and the news of the departure has been greeted with a sense of relief from the Everton community.
The worry of course, is that the man who was responsible for thinking that Benitez was the right man for the club, is the same one who will be deciding his successor. The next will be Moshiri’s sixth managerial appointment in five years, he has made bad decision after bad decision and if it wasn’t for the stadium build would have next to no credit in the bank amongst fans.
Everton must now stabilise and try to pick up some much needed points starting with Aston Villa next week, in order to stop increasingly real worries of relegation. One rumoured solution is to hand temporary charge to a duo of Duncan Ferguson and Leighton Baines. Following Marco Silva’s departure in December 2019 this was the strategy. The result: an epic 3-1 victory over Chelsea where the images of Big Dunc going wild on the side-lines went viral. This type of energy, passion and enthusiasm is exactly what Everton have been lacking under Benitez, Ferguson may well be the man we need to unite as a fan base once more. He is clearly extremely well thought of around the club, he knows the players and has the ability to inspire, the Everton board should go down this route, rather than rushing in to a big decision. That being said, Ferguson has been a part of the problem at Finch Farm for the last six years, he cannot absolve himself of responsibility for the crisis the club is in. This makes you think, that if he hasn’t been able to positively effect things in an assistants role, how is he possibly going to make things better as the Head Coach.
Whether good or bad on an interim basis, it seems unlikely that Ferguson would be handed the job on a permanent basis. Worryingly Roberto Martinez is being heavily linked at the moment on a temporary or permanent basis. This was first reported by Telegraph Football and is now being picked up by many others on Twitter. Going in this direction will not smooth mood at Goodison, Martinez had a good initial spell at the club but there was a reason for his dismissal, defensively we were an absolute shambles and Bobby has done nothing to suggest he could fix Everton’s backline now. Since leaving all he has managed to do is waste Belgium’s golden generation. Martinez would be an extremely underwhelming appointment, one that would give cause for concern over Everton Football Club’s status as a Premier League outfit.
Other options being linked include Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard, whilst my number one choice, Graham Potter is unsurprisingly, given the state of the club said to be uninterested in the role. Ultimately unless someone of the calibre of Christophe Galtier became available, it seems most sensible to go with Duncan until the end of the season, at which point the footballing review should be complete and hopefully Everton can plan for the future in a cohesive manner after Ferguson has kept us in the league and lifted our spirits in the process. Though this is probably extremely wishful thinking and Bobby Martinez will be rushed back by the end of the week, only for this cycle to repeat itself once more.