Everton want to appoint Frank Lampard's successor on Friday, with former Burnley boss Sean Dyche set to be appointed; ex-Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa also held talks with the club and was owner Farhad Moshiri's No 1 choice for the job; Ralph Hasenhuttl was also in the frame
Friday 27 January 2023 18:57, UK
Everton want their new manager in place by Friday and Sean Dyche is now expected to be appointed as Frank Lampard's replacement.
Both Dyche and Marcelo Bielsa held talks with the Toffees on Thursday, but the former Burnley boss appears to have won the race to take charge at Goodison Park.
Everton are believed to feel Dyche can hit the ground running, with the club having 18 Premier League matches still to play, while he already knows a handful of the club's players.
Dyche will be given money to spend on transfers before the window closes.
Bielsa's plan for Everton was a restructure of the playing side of the club from top to bottom. He had a detailed long-term plan and not just a short-term fix.
Bielsa feels Everton are a great club but the timing was not right and he had reservations about whether the squad could adapt to his methods midway through a season.
A source involved in the negotiations has denied that Bielsa wanted to work at the club with the underage teams before taking over as head coach in the summer.
Bielsa did have a long meeting with Farhad Moshiri, the Everton owner, on Thursday night. The former Leeds boss is understood to have impressed, but it is thought he would need a summer to get the team into the shape he would have liked.
Bielsa was pictured landing at Heathrow Airport by the Daily Mail after reportedly arriving on a flight from Brazil. The Argentine was Moshiri's preferred option, but the cost of bringing him to the club meant the deal was a difficult one to do.
Bielsa and his backroom staff were 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 was No 1 on Everton's wanted list, it is understood there were concerns among the bosses about the cost, and about making such wholesale changes to their coaching staff structure.
Everton ideally want a manager with Premier League experience, which made Dyche a strong contender for the vacancy.
Everton sacked Lampard on Monday after nearly a year in charge at Goodison Park.
Everton were very disappointed over the U-turn of Villarreal forward Arnaut Danjuma, who looked set to move to Goodison Park on loan - but 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."
Anthony Gordon appeared at Everton's Finch Farm training ground on Friday after a three-day absence.
Sky Sports News reported this week that Gordon was not there on Tuesday due to a planned absence, but did not show up on Wednesday and Thursday for unplanned reasons.
The 21-year-old has been the subject of interest from Newcastle in this transfer window but, despite reports, Sky Sports News understands he has not handed in a transfer request.
It is also understood that a bid of £40m could be enough to convince Everton to sell Gordon in this transfer window.
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.
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."
February 4 - Arsenal (H), kick-off 12.30pm
February 13 - Liverpool (A), live on Sky Sports, 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