Everton sacked their manager Ronald Koeman earlier this week after their abysmal 2-5 defeat to Arsenal last weekend pushed them into the relegation zone. They appointed former defender and under-23s’ manager David Unsworth as an interim option but are yet to name a long-term replacement for Koeman. This has turned everyone into a matchmaker with all and sundry identifying who will be the best bet to take over the reins on a long-term basis.
From some news outlets believing that Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers could be a great option to the boxer Tony Bellew (who is an ardent Toffees’ fan) believing that they should replace Koeman with Diego Simeone, everyone has an opinion. So why not us? In this piece, I list three kinds of options and a few specific names within those kinds that Everton could consider.
Before we venture into the kinds of managers Everton could look at; it might help to understand what type of manager they would need. Many observers have mentioned this season that Everton seem like a pretty immobile team without a high-quality striker leading the line for them. They bought a lot of players over the summer, but they have not yet settled in. Everton need someone who can breathe life into such a squad and also adapt tactically to such a team. He has to be someone who can inspire the army of recruits, while also convincing the veterans such as Rooney and Baines. Let us see, which are the types of managers that Everton could consider.
Star Managers from Europe
Carlo Ancelotti is available, as is Thomas Tuchel. Diego Simeone is not available, but celebrity fans want him. These are managers who have had varying degrees of success on the continent – either in domestic leagues or European competitions. If Everton can get one of these to lead them, these managers are certainly capable of breathing life into the squad. However, the Toffees might find it difficult to appoint each of these managers due to various reasons.
Ancelotti is on vacation, but if he is given a star-studded team, he might have considered an immediate return to management. But Everton lack that star power that Ancelotti likes to have in his teams. Tuchel, it seems, is more keen on the Bayern job which is expected to open up again in the summer. Diego Simeone is at a club that he loves and it would take a lot more than a simple monetary approach from Everton to convince the Argentinian to Merseyside.
Other Managers from the Continent
If they look past these star names, Everton will find that a few other managers are available in Europe, who could fill their void. For example, former Barcelona manager Luis Enrique is available. He too might want a bigger job in football, but he is more likely to consider a challenge like Everton than Ancelotti. Another name that is being talked about is Shakhtar Donetsk’s manager Paulo Fonseca. Given the Premier League status and Everton’s pedigree, Fonseca might indeed be tempted. However, both these managers have been accustomed to playing with great firepower in the attack, which Everton lack.
Managers with English Premier League Experience
I feel this is the most likely source category for Everton’s next manager. But it is also the least ambitious one. The most ambitious target in this category would be Brendan Rodgers. The former Liverpool boss might want a tougher challenge than managing Celtic. Everton have a history with Rodgers as they were interested in signing him back when he signed for Liverpool. Burnley’s Sean Dyche’s name has also come up, but he himself has poured cold water on the prospect of leaving Burnley. Sam Allardyce and Alan Pardew are possibilities, but they should be last-ditch options to save Everton from relegation, not the leaders to lead Everton for the long term.
Another name that has come up is that of Ryan Giggs, who expressed interest in both Everton and Leicester City jobs. As the Foxes have found their new manager (Claude Puel), Giggs might be even more interested in the Goodison Park job. One option that Everton should be considering but is not being talked about a lot is the new Watford manager Marco Silva. Silva has shown with both Hull City and Watford that if he is capable of launching Everton higher up the table. The final name in this category would be that of their current caretaker manager – David Unsworth. For Unsworth, this is a promotion, and he will be happy with the job Further, he showed in the Carabao Cup game against Chelsea that he can organise Everton better than what Koeman did with them.
Of these managers, I would believe that despite Everton’s interest in managers such as Tuchel, their next permanent replacement for Ronald Koeman is going to be from the Premier League experienced category. While Rodgers, Giggs and Marco Silva are all good options to choose from, I feel that the Toffees’ best bet is to continue with David Unsworth. If Everton’s form does not pick up under Unsworth by Christmas, then they can look for a better option.