Everton sack Rafael Benitez as manager
Rafael Benitez has been sacked as Everton manager on Sunday after less than seven months in charge.
The Toffees appointed the former Liverpool manager, 61, as Carlo Ancelotti’s successor in June.
Everton, who lost 2-1 to Norwich City on Saturday, have won only one of their last 13 Premier League games and sit 15th in the table, six points above the relegation places.
The club say an update on a permanent replacement will be made in due course.
Everton held an emergency board meeting on Saturday to discuss Benitez’s future following the defeat at Carrow Road, which was a ninth loss in the club’s past 12 league games.
Everton’s travelling contingent demanded Benitez “get out of our club”, while another supporter invaded the pitch in an attempt to confront the Spaniard.
Benitez, whose previous job in the Premier League was at Newcastle United, leaves Everton with a win percentage of 31.8% – his lowest record in charge of an English club.
Everton have 19 points after 19 games and only twice previously have the Toffees had fewer points at this stage of a Premier League campaign (17 in 1997-98 and 2005-06).
‘Rooney will get a mention’
Former Premier League defender Stephen Warnock believes former Everton striker Wayne Rooney, who is Derby County’s manager, could be considered – but Brighton’s Graham Potter should be their first choice.
“Wayne Rooney will get a mention and it is up to Wayne where he feels he is at if he was offered the job,” Warnock told BBC Radio 5 Live.
“It would be very difficult to turn down, from a club and fans point of view. Is he experienced enough? He would get the respect of the fans and the players.
“The choice I look at, and Brighton fans won’t want me to say this, is Graham Potter. Everton fans want open and expansive football, and you would get that with him.
“This appointment has to be the right one. I don’t think (assistant manager) Duncan Ferguson is the right choice, they need to look elsewhere.”
Everton won four of their first six league games under Benitez, taking 13 points from a possible 18, but their form has collapsed since October.
They finished 10th with 59 points last season with current Real Madrid boss Ancelotti as manager.
Director of football Marcel Brands departed in December as owner Farhad Moshiri attempted to tackle the crisis surrounding the club.
Former Premier League striker Clinton Morrison added: “There has not been a plan at Everton for years. They have not spent well and that is why the director of football had to go.
“I knew it would be a big struggle for Rafa going there. He started ever so well but once you have been a legend at Liverpool, it’s always going to be difficult when you start losing games. It wasn’t good enough against Norwich. Top six? No chance. They could be in a relegation battle.”