Frank Lampard is reportedly now the sole candidate to take charge at Everton, with the Toffees board hopeful of confirming him as manager in the coming days.
The former Chelsea boss has been out of work for just over a year now, having left Stamford Bridge last January. Since then, he’s reportedly eyed various jobs, including Norwich, but is yet to get back into the game. Now it seems his wait is set to end by being named as successor to Rafa Benitez.
The Toffees were seemingly intent on appointing Vitor Pereira. However, following supporter protests, together with a U-turn by Farhad Moshiri, it seems Everton will instead pursue Lampard.
Former Porto coach Pereira, meanwhile, admits the fan protests about his potential appointment left him feeling hurt.
“Of course [it upsets me]. This is the first time in my career I have seen this kind of thing, I’ve never had these comments about me.
“I think these critics are not directed at me. It is the environment now as the club is not in a good position and the supporters are passionate – and this passion is the power of the club.
“They don’t know me, my work or me as a person or my CV. I don’t take it as a personal attack. I work in a lot of countries, different clubs, at different levels, and we got several titles but before you start work you don’t know the person and you cannot judge.
“But I understand the feelings of the supporters because, in the last few years, the club didn’t get good results and it is normal they are not happy.”
Frank Lampard to hold talks on Thursday
When quizzed on the turmoil surrounding the club, Pereira added: “This is something I cannot control.”
And with his prospective appointment seemingly doomed to failure before it begins, a move for Lampard looks on the cards.
As such, The Independent claims Everton’s board are to hold further talks with Lampard on Thursday.
And if they can find common ground and he impresses Moshiri, Lampard could be unveiled as their new boss before the weekend.
Dele Alli to become first signing
Lampard will likely only then have a matter of days to alter Everton’s squad. Indeed, with the transfer window closing on Monday, he’ll have precious little time.
However, a separate report in the Daily Express claims a link-up with Dele Alli looks to be on the cards.
The midfielder is free to leave Tottenham this month if he can find himself a new club.
Antonio Conte is desperate to move him on to free up a space for a new signing.
And the Express claims Lampard is unlikely to pass up the opportunity to work with the 25-year-old.
Lampard is reportedly a huge admirer of Alli, and has waxed lyrical about him in the past.
After the Spurs man scored a brace against Real Madrid in 2017, Lampard noted his approval to BT Sport.
“In terms of young players in world football, his runs and timing and obviously his quality of finishing, is up there with anybody.
“I see those angled runs I tried to make. I always tried to make runs behind defenders. That’s because the defenders were sometimes marking and don’t see that angled run behind.”
Alli’s career may have has since faded. However, the paper reckons Frank Lampard will relish the chance to work with him and rejuvenate his form.