Next Everton Manager Odds: Bielsa likely for Goodison hotseat after Lampard sacked
Everton have confirmed the departure of Frank Lampard after less than a year as manager.
Everton next manager odds
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Everton are a club in flux at the moment, with pundits and fans alike wondering where they are set to turn next following the departure of Lampard.
The Toffees took a minor risk when they appointed Lampard last year in the hopes that he would steer them to safety, given his lack of experience in a relegation battle. But the former Chelsea and Derby boss’ arrival at Goodison Park revitalised the club and its fans, and in their penultimate match of the 2021/22 campaign, Everton’s Premier League status was secured.
Over the summer, Everton brought in eight new players including Amadou Onana, Dwight McNeil and Neal Maupay, but also said goodbye to Richarlison. The new season started poorly, with Everton going six games without a win in the Premier League before finally getting off the board in a 1-0 win over West Ham.
Despite beating Southampton in their next match, Everton were unable to build any semblance of form, losing their next three. A 3-0 win over Crystal Palace towards the end of October stopped the rot for a moment but they haven’t won since. Across all competitions, 10 games have now passed for Everton without victory, including six Premier League defeats from eight.
“Everyone at Everton would like to thank Frank and his coaching staff for their service during what has been a challenging 12 months,” a very late club statement read.
“Frank and his team’s commitment and dedication have been exemplary throughout their time at the club, but recent results and the current league position meant this difficult decision had to be taken. We wish Frank and all his backroom team well for their future in the game.”
Paul Tait and Leighton Baines will take over in training until Everton appoint a new manager. But who could it be?
There were a few hours between the news breaking of Lampard’s sacking an Everton actually confirming the story, which meant there was a lot of time for names to be linked.
The early favourite and one of the first names mentioned is Marcelo Bielsa, who has been out of work for just under a year since being sacked by Leeds United. According to reports, Bielsa has already held talks with Everton owner Farhad Moshiri about the vacant role and has expressed his interest in returning to the Premier League.
Bielsa is admired by a number of the world’s top managers and would be a longer-term replacement as opposed to someone who could make quick changes to keep Everton up — though that would be the main priority.
The biggest thing about Bielsa is his tactics, and he would undoubtedly want to work hard to implement them as quickly as possible. During his time at Leeds, Bielsa utilised a number of formations for his system, but the most iconic — and the one most linked with the Argentine — is the 3-3-3-1/3-3-1-3.
At Everton, the back three would likely remain the same as in Lampard’s final match, consisting of James Tarkowski, Conor Coady and Yerry Mina, protecting Jordan Pickford’s goal. Vitaly Mykolenko would also probably keep his place in the midfield three as one of the fluid wing-backs, but Seamus Coleman may lose his place to someone like Ruben Vinagre.
Amadou Onana and Idrissa Gueye will battle it out for the sole midfield spot, with the former probably winning out. In attack, Neal Maupay could see himself back in the team having lost his place under Lampard, joining Alex Iwobi, Demarai Gray and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
On the other side of the Bielsa coin is Sean Dyche, the complete opposite in terms of playing style but also someone who has experience in lifting a team up the table and would have a more immediate impact.
For years Dyche was keeping Burnley safe in the Premier League and it was only last season that relegation finally won its latest war with the Englishman – though he did leave before the drop was confirmed.
In the short term, Dyche may stick with what he knows and who he knows at Everton, bringing a Burnley style to Goodison Park. A man in love with the classic 4-4-2, Dyche could be someone to get the most out of this Everton side, while making them solid defensively. Tarkowski will be his go-to man at centre-back, but we could also see Michael Keane brought in from the cold, having been pushed to one side by Lampard.
In midfield, Onana and Gueye are the perfect pairing — not that Everton have many other options — while Iwobi and former Burnley man Dwight McNeil would be able to provide both width and the ability for a narrow 4-2-2-2 depending on the game. Up front, it’s a strike partnership of Calvert-Lewin and Maupay.
A legendary striker at Goodison Park, Duncan Ferguson has been in temporary charge of Everton on a couple of occasions. First he replaced Marco Silva in an interim role which included draws with Arsenal and Manchester United and a win over Chelsea, before Carlo Ancelotti took charge.
Then, last year, he was the one-game stop gap between Rafael Benitez and Lampard, but lost his only match in the dugout against Aston Villa. Ferguson remained at Everton as assistant manager under Lampard, as he was for Ancelotti and Benitez, but left in the summer. Could he be back, this time as a permanent manager?
Marcelino hasn’t managed outside of Spain but he is well respected in La Liga, particularly for his work with Villarreal. When Marcelino took charge of Villarreal in January 2013, they were in the second tier of Spanish football, but he led them straight up and under his stewardship the Yellow Submarine finished sixth twice and then fourth. He also took the club to the semi-finals of the Europa League in 2015/16, but was sacked before he could lead them in the Champions League.
More success followed at Valencia, with Marcelino leading Los Che to Copa del Rey glory, and then the Supercopa de Espana with Athletic Bilbao. Marcelino has been out of work since June, having left Bilbao after 18 months at the end of his contract.
Like Dyche, Marcelino is a firm believer of the 4-4-2, but his Everton XI may look a little less “Burnley-y”. In place of Keane, Mina will likely come in but there will be hope that Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey aren’t forgotten. In midfield Gray and Iwobi will patrol the flanks, with the former showing moments of class albeit all too frequently. This is definitely an Everton squad in need of a true makeover.
Wayne Rooney’s name was mentioned when Benitez was sacked by Everton last year, but everyone thought it was too early for him to make the step up from job at Derby. The Englishman remained at Derby for the rest of the season but despite his best efforts couldn’t save them from relegation, battling against a hefty points deduction.
Rooney is now in MLS, managing DC United, where he ended his playing career, but struggled in the second half of the 2022 season with just two wins from 14 games (nine defeats).