Everton reportedly want to make Friday the day they are able to finally decide who out of Vitor Pereira, Frank Lampard and Duncan Ferguson will be their new manager.
The Toffees have seemingly made a habit of struggling to find the right manager for the long-term vision of the club. In fact, since David Moyes left in 2013, five coaches have faced the sack at Goodison Park.
Rafael Benitez was the latest casualty after spending only half a season in the dugout. And the search to replace the Spaniard has proved exhaustive and drawn-out.
As such, former Chelsea boss Lampard has been installed as one of the new favourites.
According to the Daily Mirror, though, the race remains wide open between the pair and current caretaker boss Ferguson.
Indeed, all three will speak to Everton owner Farhad Moshiri and the club’s board on Friday. Pereira and Lampard’s talks will be the third round of discussions they have had with the Toffees.
The fact that Everton have decided to re-interview Portuguese coach Pereira despite the fan backlash is telling.
Ferguson will also have the opportunity to put his name forward to take the manager’s job long-term. However, the Daily Mirror adds that it is ‘essentially’ Lampard vs Pereira.
Everton will ask all three candidates to lay out an ‘extensive’ and ‘thorough’ plan on how the club can avoid relegation this season.
The Toffees have only won two Premier League matches since September 25. In that time, they have slipped from fifth to 16th.
What’s more, they play 18th-placed Newcastle in a crunch clash next.
Pereira, Lampard eye Everton job
Toffees chiefs will also ask the candidates to set out their long-term vision for the club alongside rebuilding the team.
Benitez and his predecessor Carlo Ancelotti both talked about Everton being a project which needs time. However, neither manager got the sufficient longevity they sought.
Indeed, Everton have a new stadium coming down the track and want to be in a stable position by the time they leave Goodison Park.
In the immediate short-term, though, Everton want a new manager in by the time the transfer window shuts on Monday.
Reports have claimed that Lampard is eyeing a signing for the club before the cut-off.