Everton sack Rafa Benitez as manager after only six and a half months in charge

The former Liverpool and Real Madrid boss was unable to turn around the club’s fortunes

Karl Matchett
Sunday 16 January 2022 15:34
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<p>The Toffees’ fanbase were vocal against the original appointment of Benitez </p>

The Toffees’ fanbase were vocal against the original appointment of Benitez

Everton have confirmed the sacking of Rafa Benitez as manager, following the Toffees’ defeat to Norwich City on Saturday.

A 2-1 loss left the side in 15th, with only five wins in the Premier League this season and only one in the last 13.

The timing of the departure is made somewhat surprising after the board backed him with the recent arrivals of full-backs Nathan Patterson and Vitaliy Myolenko, as well as a loan deal for Anwar El Ghazi. The sale of Lucas Digne offset those new faces.

However, results – in particular against the side who were bottom prior to the weekend – and a growing discontentment among a fanbase who were vocal against the original appointment of Benitez, have ultimately proven defining factors.

No immediate replacement has been named by the club. A short statement on their website simply read: “Everton Football Club can confirm the departure of Rafael Benitez as First Team manager.

“Benitez, who joined Everton in June 2021, has left the club with immediate effect.

“An update on a permanent replacement will be made in due course.”

Speaking after the defeat at Carrow Road, Benitez pointed out that he was taking over a club which had deep-rooted problems spanning several managerial appointments, saying: “I am a professional and I have enough experience. I came here to fix issues that were coming from the last five years. What I have to do now is analyse the mistakes we are making and make sure we avoid that for the future. The rest is not in my hands.”

Everton’s next game is against Aston Villa, who are now led by Benitez’s former captain at Liverpool, Steven Gerrard.

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